Welcome back for another week of High Stakes MTGO! After a small break due to important deadlines in my day job I'm back for fully developed High Stakes MTGO articles.
Although I had very little spare time these past few weeks my account saw a lot of movement. I didn't really have the opportunity to speculate on cards spotlighted during Pro Tour Shadows over Innistrad such as Seasons Past, Dark Petition and Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet (which I can't believe I missed) and I mainly sold a few of my positions according to their new trends, selling out too early in some cases.
Following the end of Shadows over Innistrad release events a lot of prices are currently rebounding. Battle for Zendikar and Oath of the Gatewatch singles are more or less slowly taking off and Modern cards are cycling up for the most part. This is going to be a good period to sell and look for tastes-of-the-day to cash out on, especially in Standard and in BFZ and OGW.
The new Standard rotation structure simply doubled the opportunity for cards to have their moment of fame. We can already see that effect on some Magic Origins and Dragons of Tarkir cards that probably would have not shined in the previous rotation structure.
As usual, the live portfolio is available here.
Buys This Week
This oath is starting to see play in more and more decks in Standard, Modern and even Legacy. I clearly didn't catch it at its absolute bottom but I think I still have a good margin of progress from my buying price.
Oath of the Gatewatch just stopped being the main set opened from drafts so I would expect the price to slowly creep up if the green oath keeps seeing play across several formats. You can also check Adam Yurchick's article for additional reasons to buy Oath of Nissa.
Affinity decks are not as prevalent now as they were a few months ago, which might partially explain why Creeping Corrosion crashed to its one year-low at 1 tix last week. This is part of the usual up and down cycles in Modern that are of interest to speculators. As of writing, the price has already heavily rebounded; I might actually be selling this one very soon.
Sales This Week
After a global dip at the end of April, the price of these Magic Origins painlands are back up. With less and less time before ORI rotates out of Standard I have to intensify my sales of painlands. I have lowered my minimum selling prices at least momentarily to liquidate several hundred copies.
Along with red in general in this current Standard metagame, Shivan Reef and Battlefield Forge are pretty low. Hopefully the metagame will evolve to favor red and these two painlands next. If not, my last chance will be a change brought by Eldritch Moon.
This bulk spec never got anywhere. I took advantage of an unexpected little spike last week and sold about two thirds of my position here. I'll wait a little bit more now that the price is back to its baseline, but I'm only looking to exit this position at this point, with or without further gains.
The price of the Legendary Cube Prize Packs keeps fluctuating up and down but the global trend is still up since last December. Sales from speculators surely have affected the trend but I keep selling my stock as soon as the buying price is at 2.8 tix or more.
As I mentioned before, this spec has been a great ride and I don't want to ruin everything by being caught by an unexpected reprint. For this reason I'll be selling more of these packs whenever the opportunity occurs.
The powerful Eldrazi creatures (this along with Thought-Knot Seer) were somehow relegated to the sidelines during PT SOI. Reality Smasher even dropped to 1.4 tix, when I decided to buy it. A week later the Smasher was back in the 3.5-4 tix range, its pre-SOI high. At this point I had more than doubled my spec and I decided to let go with 130 tix in profit in only about a week.
Despite my latest move, I think this guy may have more to offer in the long run. I just felt like this spec had been good enough to me at this very moment to lock in some profits. If Reality Smasher goes below 2 tix again I'll become a buyer once more.
Never has a full set spec gone this well in such a small period of time. OGW was also strangely disappointing in that it's the only full set spec I couldn't buy as many copies of as I wanted, because the price was moving up too soon, too fast. Anyway, OGW sets are up by more than 50% compared to my buying price. Historically it's very hard to beat a +50% on a full set spec.
Whether OGW will be the exception or not is nothing to worry about any more, as far as I'm concerned. I sold my 11 OGW full sets and got exactly what I was looking for.
From 18 tix on April 25th to 40 tix this past weekend, this is how fast a price can grow with Modern cards, even with a high starting price tag. With Future Sight flashback drafts just around the corner and a price already that high, this was a selling opportunity I didn't really want to miss. Too bad I was so reluctant to buy more copies above 21 tix. Chances are I'll rebuy some copies of the Grove later this month.
On My Radar
While I'll be watching my Modern specs in the new format as the metagame settles, my Standard specs are really the ones I don't want to lose track of. Unlike Modern specs where missing a peak is not the end the world since just about everything is cyclical, Standard specs do not offer that degree of freedom.
Especially for specs from Magic Origins and Dragons of Tarkir, this is the final lap. I tried to sell some of these positions during PT SOI, some of them perhaps a little too prematurely. However my portfolio still holds a lot of specs from these two sets, including mythics, rares, bulk specs and thousands of painlands!
With ORI and DTK positions I clearly can't miss any spike. As I'm writing these lines I'm carefully watching Dragonlord Silumgar making his way to the top again. Good results during the two Standard GPs of this past weekend would mean an extra 2 or 3 tix per copy, but I will have to sell during this spike.
I'm also aware that I will have to suffer some losses here and there. For instance I'm not going to wait until the last minute to sell Woodland Bellower and it looks like 1 tix is the best I can hope for at the moment.
I'll also be watching my BFZ and OGW specs. Although I may have more time with those specs I will nonetheless be selling when my target prices are met. Reality Smasher was the first one down this week for this very reason. I'm happy when my specs have a high turnover and I intend to keep up with the pace with my Standard picks.
Questions & Answers
These are recurrent questions but my answer is actually evolving so it's totally fine to revisit this. As bot chains are evolving too, I'm using now bots I was not using few months ago.
Adam is assuming correctly that I almost exclusively use bots for my transactions, probably 99.5% of the time. The spread very often favors using bots and with a limited time to dedicate to MTGO, I try complete as many transactions as possible when I'm online. Bots are the fastest mechanism to buy and sell cards.
As you certainly know there's no one bot chain that has the best selling and buying prices for all cards. Even if such a bot chain existed I would need to check other bots anyway to acquire the dozens of playsets I want for each position. These days, whether I'm selling or buying cards, I always put up five websites (in no particular order): MtgoTraders, GoatBots, DojoTrade, MtgoLibrary Bots and Clanteam.
MtgoTraders and GoatBots are two of the largest vendors online and have the advantage of keeping a large stock of just about any card. More importantly, they will let you buy as many copies as you want if you are willing to pay a small increment after each purchase (or accept a smaller price after each sale).
CardHoarder and CardBot are two other large bot chains that use the same pricing as MtgoTraders. I rarely use them since when a price gets too high with MtgoTraders it will get too high as well on these two other stores. By habit I keep using MtgoTraders. GoatBots is also a bot chain of choice for boosters and full sets.
DojoTrade is a bot chain you should consider if you're not using it already. You are limited with buying and selling a playset per 24 hours but they have a decent stock and very competitive prices, often the best buying/selling ones. They also sell sets at great prices which is another advantage.
MtgoLibrary groups together a ton of individual bot chains, big and small. At some point I've probably used about 95% of the regular, decently-priced and -stocked bots, and I must have attained the "speculator" special pricing for some of them. It's easy to compare prices across the various bots, and I simply start with the cheapest when buying or the most expensive when selling. I would strongly recommend respecting the playset limitation some bots have set to avoid being banned. There's more to gain in the long run by respecting these limits.
On their website Clanteam bots advertise boosters, full sets, Standard and recent Modern sets, but actually sell almost everything if you check their bots on MTGO. They rarely have the best prices but are always competitive. They sell full sets and are also one of the very rare chains to buy full sets. One thing that comes handy with Clanteam is that they buy absolutely everything for 0.0001 tix at the lowest.
Besides this I happen to screen the Classifieds from time to time or check alternative bot chains such as Mtgo Academy or TheCardNexus and bots using the same software. And once every blue moon I buy or sell to humans through offers on the Classifieds.
Thank you for reading,