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Insider: Buy List Updates

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Another day, another Buy List update. Mirrodin Besieged has made its triumphant debut onto the buy lists and pretty much all the cards we had expected to be valuable are there with little in the way of surprises. We need more sleepers.

I would like to thank TCGPlayer for their retail price coalition, Magic Traders for their eBay data, as well as Cool Stuff Inc, Troll and Toad, Starcity Games, Channel Fireball, Card Haus Games, Altereality Games, Strike Zone, MTG Mint Card, ABU Games and of course Kelly Reid’s Dragons Den Online for their online buy lists.

First up this week we have the top 60 list. It’s a combined list of both Standard and Extended but the top four spots all go to cards from well established Standard decks.

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Jace, the Mind Sculptor is still king of the Planeswalkers but is sitting there right next to the new comer Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas. [card Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas]Tezz 2.0[/card] made a big impression at Pro Tour Paris and I think he’ll be able to maintain a decent price for a while to come. That of course lowers the potential value of a lot of the rest of the set so I could easily see even more Worldwake-esque polarization to be on the way. Rounding out the top 5 we have M11’s Primeval Titan, Rise of the Eldrazi’s Vengevine and Lorwyn’s Thoughtseize.

I have a bit of a rant to go on before I continue.

Shortly after the new Tezz decklist from Pro Tour Paris went online, I went eBay to purchase a set of Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas expecting that they would jump in price. I don’t do much in the way of speculative purchasing, these were only to play with, not to flip for profit. There were many sites including Troll and Toad and Card Kingdom that had them available for sale at around the same price, but with shipping and tax, the sale would have ended up about $10-$15 higher than the eBay offering. I suppose that ultimately it teaches me not to buy from someone with a positive but sparsely populated rating (250 transactions). I reasoned that since I only have 100 transactions under my belt and am an honest buyer, then I should ignore the low transaction number (compared to the thousands that others boast) and give the guy a chance. Monday of the next week rolls around and there has been no communications from him so I send off an email asking about a tracking number. Sometime later that night I receive a reply that says his binder was stolen and he was cancelling the sale. This is certainly a plausible event to happen. Binders and cards are stolen often enough that it’s not really a shock when it happens, but I’m not inclined to believe him. The timing is certainly suspicious, and a number of small inconsistencies don’t add up. His eBay profile says he’s from Bend Oregon, and the local shops seem to have events on Tuesdays and Fridays. This being the case, when was this binder stolen? Before the purchase and he hadn’t pulled the auction down, or after when they should have been set aside or already shipped? Ok, so maybe they were in the binder at FNM and he planned on sending them out on that Saturday and just didn’t notify me. He claims to have been trying to get some replacements in order to complete the sale, so that could be the reason for the delay in notification. Though there are two shops within 1.5 miles of each other, he claims that they aren’t available from the only shop in his home town or from it's patrons. That could be possible. After all, getting a full playset so fast isn’t super easy to do unless you’re pretty lucky, especially in a small town. After I protested the cancellation he went on to explain that he had really been looking forward to the sale of them because he had intended to use the money to buy a box of MBS. He had in fact already borrowed the money for that box from his father and the money from the sale was to pay him back. I’m further bothered by the fact that this auction was for cards that are rare but aren't unique. It's not some irreplaceable set of exploring gear left to him by his great great grandfather or something (and why would he sell that anyway unless it was part of the plot of a movie by Machael Bay based on toys from the 80's?) He could still acquire more and honor the sale and maintain his claimed hard earned 10 year eBay rating. I called the local stores in Bend Oregon to ask if someone’s binder had been stolen but no one picked up the phone. I’m not sure that confirmation of a stolen binder would even mean anything. I mean, he could have contacted me to let me know. The delays make me thing he was more likely struggling with telling me this “story” rather than looking for replacements. Allowing bought and paid for cards to be placed into an environment that they could be stolen is also irresponsible.

I'm thinking this weeks FNM might be a road trip... see what deck he's playing... what do you think?

All these little things add up to a big flashing red sign screaming that he’s trying to scam me. It’s not even an original plot. This kind of thing happens fairly often, probably more often than binders being stolen. I’m not out for revenge; if I was I would just link you to his eBay profile and warn you not to deal with him. I would pretend to have power and influence so that I could make sure it cost him appropriately for unethical practices like this. I can’t really do that though because he could be telling the truth. Coincidences (combined with irresponsible behavior) can sometimes happen. Who knows? I suppose it’s a good thing that I tend not to play Blue.

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Our current top Mythics read like the list of most expensive Pro Tour cards, which is some justification for the pricing. [card Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas]Tezz 2.0[/card] is being purchased by online stores for more than he was being sold just a week ago. He is of course the lynch pin in the newest Standard deck on the block…

… to me though he still seems pretty limited in scope of use. The deck could certainly be dominating, but [card Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas]Tezz 2.0[/card] isn’t like Jace, the Mind Sculptor who can fit anywhere you can wedge two islands. There are a few pretty good Tier One playables in Mirrodin Besieged so he might not be able to maintain a $50+ price tag but it doesn’t seem too unreasonable right now. How’s that sentence for definitive?

I have to assume that Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker is in high demand in the casual crowd, so make sure to grab them from the binders of your competitive friends and move them to your Commander junkie friends. and by grab I mean trade and by friends I mean friends. Buy low, sell high, visit a new magic store for FNM… maybe in Bend Oregon... it’ll work out.

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The First list gives us a ranking by percentage delta of those cards which are on Buy Lists for a price that is higher than the average eBay price and the second is the same but based on Store pricing. The margins are a bit slimmer on some of the cards then they were last month. Jenara, Asura of War, Lord of Extinction, Kalitas, Bloodchief of Ghet, Liege of the Tangle and Sun Titan all show the promise of margins from smart Buy List sales. Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas shows unreasonably high on this list, so I think the eBay averages on Magic Traders just haven’t caught up with real world yet.

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Stoneforge Mystic really jumps out at me on this list. If you can get eBay bargains on these little guys they’ll make great trade fodder if not make you a few quick bucks. Rounding out the top six we have all the current fetch lands. I pick up every one that I can trade for. They might dip a bit when they rotate later this year, but they’ll always be useful in any format. The Extended Rares are of course basically just the Faeries deck in order of value…. More or less. Ok, so the Omen deck is there too. Dig through the old boxes of cards and search for the Prismatic Omens you never thought would have a place. It might be a good time to cash some in.

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Now these are some interesting Womby list. If these values stay stable long enough for you to receive an eBay shipment and get the off to a store, there are some margins to be had for sure. Gather up your Rise of the Hobgoblins, Cool Stuff Inc wants them for $1.50 each.

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Above are the complete Uncommon lists.

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Crumbling Ashes seems like an odd one to spike demand, but there it is and ABU Games wants them for almost $0.50 each.

Due to some technical limitations I’ve had to strike the calculations for most of the Commons, but they probably weren’t interesting anyway….

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That’s all I have for this week, but thanks for tuning in and remember to tip your wait staff (tip well too because they have to split it with the bussers).

Magic Analyist
Chris McNutt
Level 1 Judge
@fatecreatr on Twitter

10 thoughts on “Insider: Buy List Updates

  1. Yeah, sounds like the seller's panties got in a bunch when he realized how inexpensive he was selling them for. Unfortunately, you suffered for it. I'd be mad too. E-bay transactions are legitimate business transactions. Using the internet's anonymity is not an excuse for bad business practices. (Or trolling.)

  2. For some reason these articles didn't work for me before, but I tried it again and glad I did. Very, very impressive and helpful work! A real shame you got burned on that trade…

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