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MTGO and the Prerelease Objects That Just Won’t Die

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Do you play on Magic Online? Did you have your account before Wizards shut off the lights on version 3 and saddled players with the disaster that is version 4?

Then you are probably very familiar with five items in your digital collection:

M15_EntryObject_W_reduced_v2 M15_EntryObject_U_reduced_v2M15_EntryObject_B_reduced_v2M15_EntryObject_R_reduced_v2 M15_EntryObject_G_reduced_v2

Because Wizards is so nice and cares so much about players (not because they were trying to limit the backlash of the client transition), the company provided each MTGO account with five "entry objects" to participate in MTGO prerelease events for Magic 2015. Once the window to use these objects closed (remember, these were only good for the prerelease period that closed on July 28—more than six months ago), Wizards kindly removed the excess ones from users' accounts.

What?

No, actually, these objects are still there in all their annoying glory. Every time I want to check out the number of tickets and phantom points I have in my account, I have to see these annoying and useless digital items listed, even when I specify that I only want to see tickets.

event_ticket

I decided this weekend that it was too much. I opted to pursue removing these items from my account, no matter how annoying it was. And, oh, was it annoying.

First, I went to the help room on Magic Online. I asked an ORC (online response crew) team member how to pursue this. I was told I needed to email Wizards. I clicked the link provided and was sent to... a blank page?

blankWOTCpage

People have been complaining about this issue on Twitter for weeks, mainly with regards to being unable to file for compensation (which is just completely unacceptable, of course, but a topic for a different time). I was tempted to just give up right there, but I asked the ORC if there was a way around this issue. I was told to use a different browser, which didn't work, but a different computer finally did.

I was pretty frustrated at this point, but I also have a policy of not giving too much trouble to low-level service workers—it's not their fault their employers produce a bad product with bad customer service policies. You can see evidence of these two conflicting feelings in the email I wrote:

Subject: Please remove M15 prerelease packs from my inventory

An ORC told me I had to email you all. Please remove these very annoying things and cease putting untradable items in MTGO accounts. Thanks, guys and girls! 🙂

Considering I probably should have just been able to right click and select delete to remove these from my account, this was already way too much effort to go through for items that literally have no use whatsoever at this point. I closed my browser and assumed (hoped) that the next time I logged on to Magic Online, these items would be gone.

Not so!

I got a follow-up email from Wizards asking for more information. (To WOTC's credit, it came only about three hours after I sent my initial request.) Here's the text of that email:

Hello,
In order to further investigate your request, please reply with as much of the following information as possible:
First and Last name registered to the account:
Email address registered to the account:
ZIP/Postal Code registered to the account:
Security question registered with the account:  What is your paternal grandmother's legal name?
Answer to Security question:
We take your account security very seriously. Therefore, while we want to assist you, we will require that you be able to answer certain pieces of information as registered on your account. Once we verify that you are the account owner, we can proceed with your request.
We would appreciate your feedback on the service we are providing you. Please click here to fill out a short questionnaire. To login to your account or update your question, please click here.
Brent A.
Online Response Crew
Wizards of the Coast
1-800-324-6496 (US and Canada)
425-204-8069 (From all other countries)
Monday-Friday 7am-7pm PST / 10am-10pm EST
Saturday-Sunday 7am-7pm PST / 10am-10pm EST

Let's recap: These items are worthless and provide absolutely no value to anyone. I went out my way to sign in to my Wizards.com account to send an email requesting that these literally worthless items be removed from my MTGO collection. And I am now being asked to confirm my identity (something accomplished by logging in to Wizards.com, right?) in order to move forward.

Ignoring the sunk cost fallacy and deciding I had spent too much time on this to give up now, I pressed on, though I was a little concerned that the security question asked my grandma's legal name. Did they mean maiden name? There's a pretty big distinction there.

In any case, I sent the requested information and got a response within an hour. Success! ...Right?

Hello Danny,

Thank you for contacting Wizards Customer Service. I have received your email and have forwarded it up to the appropriate team to have the M15 tokens removed.

Please let us know...BLAH BLAH BLAH
So I guess at this point I'm hoping that the next time I sign in to MTGO, these will be gone. I admit, though, that my hopes are not high.

Danny Brown

Danny is a Cube enthusiast and the Director of Content for Quiet Speculation.

View More By Danny Brown

Posted in Free, M15, MTGO

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3 thoughts on “MTGO and the Prerelease Objects That Just Won’t Die

  1. As frustrating as the things are, and as annoying as you may find the process, its reasonable (in my mind) to forward you to support to help take care of something that cannot be fixed in client.

    It is unreasonable that the ticketing system is down, on that we agree.

    But your derision at them verifying you as the legal owner of the account before removing (even useless) product from the account is totally unfounded in my mind. Coming from a background in support I can’t even begin to explain how often I had people cursing me out when I told them I couldn’t access their account without verifying ownership. Its security. You have financial value on your account, its the same reason people use security tokens on their phone. WOTC is covering their ass and that’s A-OK With me.

    There are plenty of good reasons to be upset about MTGO. In fact, there’s enough that I sold all my product on mine and quit playing. But that shouldnt leas us to post blind rage articles of little to no quality substance.

  2. Having unusable items that you can’t delete is kinda bs, I gotta agree, but I’m actually ok with making you jump through some hoops before letting their employees remove things from your account. It protects both them and the owner of the account from fraud and claims of such.

    I’ve got a question that’s kind of related to the article: are all pre-release objects still untradable? I had an experience during the RTR pre-release where I purchased some tickets and the necessary clan pack to enter the tournament for a friend who didn’t have a credit card and was unable to give him the pack he needed to enter the tournament. I haven’t tried to enter any pre-release sealed tournaments since then so I honestly have no idea.

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