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Insider: High Stakes MTGO – Oct 2nd to Oct 8th

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Hello and welcome back to another week of High Stakes MTGO!

Times are definitively rough for speculators, and for my portfolio more specifically. The changes announced two weeks ago, mainly affecting Modern at this time, combined with the usual price depreciation observed during the release of a new set, are putting my bankroll and overall speculative decisions to the test.

As judged by the Modern Staples price index, format prices have collectively dropped by about 15%. Depending on what's in your portfolio, you may have even lost more than that. Some prices are stabilizing, but different cards have completely different price trajectories.

Looking at the Treasure Chest curated card list, some cards are still losing value, such as Cavern of Souls, Horizon Canopy and Blood Moon. Others, such as Liliana of the Veil, Tarmogoyf and Creeping Tar Pit, seem to have stabilized. A third category of staples, including Inkmoth Nexus, Twilight Mire and Kataki, War's Wage, have already markedly rebounded or appear not to have reacted at all to the announcement.

More Modern flashback drafts are to come after Kaladesh (KLD) release events; Innistrad block is next. If a week of triple Avacyn Restored was not just a month away, I would be very tempted to grab a few copies of Cavern of Souls. This land is such a pillar in Modern and Legacy and certainly doesn't deserve the abrupt drop of roughly 50% that just happened in the past two weeks.

In all this chaos, Standard may be where the salvation begins. With the emergence of a new Standard environment prices are also shaping up. Many cards saw a temporary dip last week as the KLD prerelease events fired, but almost everything is now rebounding. Will we finally see Battle for Zendikar singles and full sets go up? Will Crush of Tentacles be more expensive than Chandra, Flamecaller by the end of this week?

With all this turmoil, my most recent decisions have been to cut down losses and salvage what I can from losing positions. As bad as things might¬†be, this period¬†of the year is still big in¬†buying opportunities, in Standard especially‚ÄĒI want to have more cash available as Pro Tour Kaladesh¬†lines up.

Let's review my moves this past week. The live portfolio is still here.

Buys This Week

emn

Two more Eldritch Moon¬†(EMN) full sets purchased this past week. With the fresh tix generated from my sales, I'm likely to add a few more playsets again this week‚ÄĒhopefully right in time for a general price hike in the wake of Pro Tour Kaladesh.

My most recent full-set specs were rather under-performing to say the least, and I'll try to be more conservative about expectations this time around. Several EMN rares and mythics have the potential to explode, but isn't that the case with about every set? Overall I'm targeting a price in the 110 to 120 tix range.

sq

I reloaded on 46 more copies at an average price of 2.08 tix. Not the best price since Spell Queller hit 1.5 tix at the end of this past week, but its price has already rebounded to 2.5 tix. Currently, this Spirit seems to have better prospects in Modern than in Standard. I hope this changes soon to push Spell Queller closer to 4 tix, which would be a decent selling price for me.

zen

Two of the many Modern cards that took a hit right after the announcement of the Treasure Chest curated list. I thought my stocks with these guys could easily support more copies, and I'm still convinced that the impact of the Treasure Chests is exaggerated. I guess we'll see in few months if doubling down with these two cards was a good idea or not.

nph

Less than a month ago, New Phyrexia was the most expensive set on MTGO. Then in the same week the set got flashback-drafted and the Treasure Chests were announced.

Torpor Orb and Phyrexian Metamorph are no Modern superstars but have shown great potential in the past, and I like them for this exact reason. Since they are not the usual Modern contenders, I would expect their current bottom to be fairly solid, while they could triple or quadruple if they become popular again.

Spellskite is definitely of another caliber. This artifact creature is played in many different decks in Modern and I'm expecting a rebound, although a moderate one, rapidly.

Sales This Week

I bought this card following Time Spiral flashback drafts. The Rack probably got a little boost recently with Tom Ross piloting 8-Rack to a seventh-place finish at the SCG Orlando Modern Open last month. A 40% profit is not something I'm going to neglect in this time of skinny cows, especially since I have a few new targets in mind at the moment.

ktklog

Khans of Tarkir (KTK) is simply not redeemable anymore. That doesn't help my KTK full-set spec, which already wasn't doing any wonders. With virtually nothing to expect from these in any foreseeable future I would rather take the loss and reinvest the tix now.

I still own a lot of fetchlands and haven't sold them yet. I'm hoping they can do better than the set as a whole. The only positive thing here is that a handful of Modern-playable cards, including Anafenza, the Foremost, Sorin, Solemn Visitor, the fetchlands, and Siege Rhino, will hit their absolute bottom soon.

bfzlog

Not all hope is lost for Battle for Zendikar sets as few mythics and several rares are rebounding a bit at this time. Nevertheless, I decided to let a few sets go to free up some tix before Pro Tour Kaladesh. Will we be able to break even with BFZ full sets? I'm not even counting on that, to be honest.

On My Radar

Does it surprise you to hear that Pro Tour Kaladesh is the one thing I'll be paying attention to this weekend? More precisely, I'll try to take full advantage of the Pro Tour hype by selling winning positions and attempting some quickflips.

Once again, paying attention to underdogs and cards not well covered at the Pro Tour could lead to interesting buying opportunities. During Pro Tour EMN, Pedro Carvalho piloted a U/R Thermo-Alchemist deck to a strong finish in Standard, notably causing Goldnight Castigator to jump from 0.8 tix to 4 tix in about a week. What will be the next Castigator? Or why not Castigator itself, since this Shadows over Innistrad (SOI) mythic is again under 1 ticket these days?

Although they won't necessarily rise next week exactly, I'll be watching the evolution of my EMN full sets. Oath of the Gatewatch full sets rose fairly quickly right after Pro Tour SOI and the bulk of the price hike happened in less than a month.

 

Thank you for reading,

Sylvain

2 thoughts on “Insider: High Stakes MTGO – Oct 2nd to Oct 8th

  1. Hi Sylvain,

    As a someone new to this site, I was wondering if you had any advice/tips on how to best purchase more than a playset of a certain card within a timely manner, because obviously obtaining 4 of a card at a time to hopefully speculate on is hardly profitable, and going from bot to bot trading for a single card at a time is quite tedious. And from what I can tell, many popular trading options only allow you to get a playset at a time.

    Thanks!
    -Charlie

  2. Hi Charlie,

    I might go deeper into details in a separate article but here is the short answer:

    Unfortunately there’s no trick that I know to buy more than 1 playset at a time. Very few bots have more than 4 copies of a card for trade and either won’t let you trade for more or will increase the price after the 4th card.

    Some bot chains including Mtgotraders and Goatbots let you trade repetitively for more than 1 playset. Alhtough the price might go up, that’s probably the best way to do. These bots are fast are very well stocked.Sure it may take few minutes to collect 50 copies of a card and if you want the best price you will have to compare many different bots.

    As tedious as it can be you can still get a very good yield $ wise for your time. This is also why speculating only on bulk cards is not the best and you want to include more expensive so you manipulate more Tix per hour.

    I have a defined routine when I’m looking for a card and check several bots very quickly. It usually doesn’t take me more than 10-15 min to buy 50 or more copies at the best price.

    Hope that helps

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