Eternal Weekend is something I found myself really looking forward to. I’ve been planning on going to this once-a-year event since it was announced to be in my hometown of Pittsburgh. Basically any big event in your own town should be automatically attended just based on proximity. Take advantage of the close events whenever possible. There are always financial opportunities waiting for you to seize them. Also, there is Magic to be played if you desire.
This year I tried my hand at Vintage. I tried the Null Rod approach in Eldrazi, but starting off the day with three Null Rod mirror matches that I lost two of was not ideal by any stretch of the imagination. It was cool to play against the powered decks, but much less cool to play against strategies exactly like what I was trying to do. An interesting experience but one I wouldn’t like to repeat.
The real reason I’m excited for Eternal Weekend is for the big Legacy event. Last year I top-eighted this event and I was pumped to try and run it back. I developed the three-color Eldrazi deck last year and I still think it’s perfectly situated in the format, so I updated my list for this year and basically played the same deck. It was a great choice and the tournament went alright until my luck turned.
There were a lot of sweet moments from this weekend I could go into. My Miracles opponent drawing three one-ofs in a row (including a maindeck Cast Out) in order to beat me. Getting double Ruination’d in one game, or how I almost blind-called my opponent on Dredge and kept a terrible hand because it had a Grafdigger's Cage. All in all, I had a fun time beating down with my foil Eldrazi army.
This is not a tournament report, however. Rather I want to cover my finance takeaways from the event. Let's jump in.
Vintage Doesn't Affect Prices
Paradoxical Outcome is a staple deck in Vintage right now. You wouldn’t know this based on the price of the card, though—it’s still a bulk rare!
I feel like this is true for a lot of cards in that format. Certainly not the high-end cards like Mishra's Workshop or Power 9 that just keep increasing in price, but the newer cards that shake up the format don’t change price based on their usage in Vintage.
Bulk Is Dying (Rares)
In the era of mythic rares, the normal everyday rare has become almost obsolete. Outside of corner cases with bomb rares, the majority of rares can’t even hold the value of a dollar. Dealers are catching up with this. I’ve spoken in the past about mythic rares bottoming out below a minimum buy price of $0.25, but today I want to focus on the value of a bulk rare.
Recently we did some “spring cleaning” at my shop and cleared out a ton of extra bulk rares from our boxes. I mean, who really needs fifty Deadbridge Goliaths, right? The problem is that although there has been an industry standard of buying any bulk rare with a rare symbol for $0.10 each, that time is coming to an end.
What I’ve found is that dealers are now offering less than that. I’ve seen in-person dealers who buy bulk rares at $0.08, $0.07, and even $0.05!
There are still dealers holding up the standard $0.10 price for us, though, and smaller businesses almost always have that price intact as well. After all, buying rares for $0.10 store credit is basically guaranteed not to lose any money, with the potential to gain much more.
Bulk Is Dying (Commons and Uncommons)
Another industry standard that is going by the wayside is a steady price for 1000 bulk commons and uncommons. It used to be, years ago at this point, that dealers would always buy your bulk for $5 per thousand, or more if you found a hot price.
Now, unfortunately, this is not even close to the case. If you take your bulk to a big event, you’ll be lucky if out of the whole room you get a couple offers on your bulk. One reason is that big dealers don’t want to spend the time and resources necessary to sort and price all of those cards. It’s much more time-efficient to price higher-value cards than the nickels and dimes. Another reason is that many of these dealers don’t want to ship these cards back because most of them fly into events.
After a while, the price per thousand on bulk dropped, and continued to drop down to $3. That’s where we’re at right now, for those dealers still actually buying these types of cards.
Regardless of the reasons, the fact is that fewer and fewer dealers are actually buying bulk. Since I have my store now, I have not been inquiring about this at other local stores so I’m not sure how smaller business are operating. If you have a good outlet for your commons and uncommons and you’re getting a good price for them, stick with it. If not, you’re in the same spot as I am. If you have an answer to this question about what to do with your bulk, let me know in the comments.
Bulk Pickers Are Picking Up
Even though dealers buying bulk commons and uncommons are hard to find these days, dealers still need the goodies. You can keep the chaff, all they want are the cards they're likely to sell.
This weekend I unloaded a ton of cards like this. I spent the evenings of two consecutive weeks sorting 100,000 bulk commons and uncommons for the goodies and I too left the chaff behind. Anyone want to buy some bulk?
Dealers will always take your good commons and uncommons and for quite a sweet price too. So, work on those picking skills and start saving a pile of cards to unload at your next event.
Picking skills will always be worthwhile so learning now will be a huge asset in the long run. There are tons of articles out there about this skill, so check them out and start picking!
Good Deals Are Everywhere
This may seem obvious, but dealers really want to sell the cards they have to make money on their investments. That means a lot of the time they will have aggressively priced cards somewhere in their case. If I have a card that’s been sitting around for a while, I tend to reduce the price to entice patrons to buy it.
Additionally, there is a lot of bargaining that goes on at events. They might have it priced at $50, but if you can buy it online for $45, what’s the harm in asking them to match it? I’ve gotten many deals just by asking if they will accept a lower price. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t.
When they don’t give you a better deal, you might go somewhere else to buy the card. And if you can't find that you can always return to the first vendor and buy it at their asking price.
There are deals to be had if you’re willing to look for them and ask if they can happen. Many times dealers will be more willing to give you a deal if you sell them cards as well. Like, you helped them, so they’ll help you in return.
Over the weekend, I had a couple conversations about showdown packs. Wizards is trying these prizes out and they can have a ton of value in them. At minimum you’ll be getting some bulk cards plus a Rebecca Guay foil land.
Initially I dismissed the price on these lands as a temporary high, but they’re sticking. Every dealer in the room seemed to buy these at a static $2 per land and, if you asked, usually $3 per Island. I figured those buy prices would subside, but they seem pretty solid. To me, that makes these lands worth tracking down.
As a store owner, that means I can afford to buy these and sit on them if they don’t sell. Players seem not only to like them but also to be willing to spend money on them. Otherwise the buy price would continue to drop.
If you aren’t playing in Showdown events, the stores I know of have super causal Standard events where they're given out to Top 8. Check out some events in your area because you could be missing out on an easy payday.
That’s all for me for this week. I hope you enjoyed my financial roundup of Eternal Weekend. It was a profitable experience for me and I’ll definitely be going next year. As always, give me your love, advice, and opinions in the comments below.
Until next time,
Unleash the Force!