A Different Kind of Spike

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The term "spike" gets tossed around in this game quite a bit, and it's funny how it means different things to different people.

If you ask a tournament grinder what a "Spike" is, they'll tell you it refers to one of the psychographic profiles MaRo came up with to describe the different kinds of players. Spike is the diehard tryhard who will do anything to win and doesn't see anything wrong with copying a deck off of the internet, borrowing cards or making a 12 year old girl cry. I don't see anything wrong with that either, necessarily. I can't even pretend I never made a 12 year old girl cry, because I totally did, but in my defense, all I did was wince and make a sucking noise when she asked if she could still Top 8 after losing to me. There's no name for the financier psychographic profile, but if there were, that would be me.

If you ask someone like me what a "Spike" is, my answer will probably be about a sudden price appreciation following some sort of event. I wouldn't even think about the psychogenic profile thing until way later. It's funny how what we think about most often shapes our snap response to an ambiguous question like this.


All of this got me thinking about whether there is a different kind of spike, and that is a sudden increase in the amount of sales activity we're seeing. The dreaded income tax filing deadline season is upon us and people are getting refund checks. Are those of you with businesses seeing increased sales activity? Do you try to get extra stuff listed in time for this season after noticing an uptick at this time of the year several years in a row?

The discussion in Reddit this week got me thinking. I am in the middle of a huge buylist cycle, but I have noticed TCG Player sales improving slightly- I don't list much, but what I do list sells about as quickly as I list it. What do you think? Income tax refund season sales spikes - fact or fiction?

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Jason Alt

Jason Alt is a value trader and writer. He is Quiet Speculation's self-appointed web content archivist and co-captain of the interdepartmental dodgeball team. He enjoys craft microbrews and doing things ironically. You may have seen him at magic events; he wears black t-shirts and has a beard and a backpack so he's pretty easy to spot. You can hear him as co-host on the Brainstorm Brewery podcast or catch his articles on He is also the Community Manager at and writes the odd article there, too. Follow him on Twitter @JasonEAlt unless you don't like having your mind blown.

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One thought on “A Different Kind of Spike

  1. Aboslutely plausible. People who get large influxes of cash rarely just sit on it, and MTG players are no less irrational than the norm.

    Actually, we’re a bunch of greedy covetous little Smeagols, we are.

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