Preparing for Pre-Release

Pre-Release is my favorite time to be a magic player. As a MTG financier (hate the word, love the job) it is a very exciting time, but can also be a pitfall. There is alot of money to be made, but alot can be lost as well. How do you know what to grab and what to dump?

Keep what you want. If there is anything that perks your attention, trade, buy, or keep it. There is nothing quite like brewing after a new set comes out. Don’t sacrifice your killer U/R shenanigans deck you want to play at fnm just because you think one card will go from five dollars to three. Play with it. Magic is about having fun (and winning).

Yoda vs. Green Lantern (101/365)
Power over Finesse JD Hancock / Foter / CC BY

Look for power cards. Power will always win over finesse. Look for the cards that are the best value for their cost.

Listen to the experts. The guys at (hate to beat a dead horse but…) Brainstorm Brewery and Quiet Speculation both know what they are talking about. I understand why you may not want to pay twelve dollars a month if you aren’t trying to become a financier, but everything on Brainstorm Brewery is free. Take advantage of it.

Don’t listen to your friends (or anyone really). Most of them are well meaning and maybe a few are good at magic. They may be right some of the time, maybe quite a few times they have guessed or speculated on something. Figure it out on your own. I’m not saying friends can’t help, but use your own reasoning. They are your cards, it’s your money, and in the end it’s your responsibility. Besides, these are probably the same friends that conned you into investing hundreds, maybe even thousands into thousands of pieces of cardboard with cute pictures, weird numbers, and complex rules so that they could feel better about their addictions and have someone to suffer with.

Listen and read anything you can about the set. My person choice in poison is Limited Resources. There are two hosts that really know what they are talking about. They do 4 hour set reviews on commons and uncommons. I have found these extremely helpful going into pre-release as well as old episodes on more general things like technical play or how to draft control. Find something that entertains you and gives you relevant information.

Magic The Gathering Cards

Win Packs. You can be wrong on a few specs if you won fifteen packs while doing it. I’m not in favor of opening the packs but do what you want. I like to either sell them, or trade them at a five dollar value. Normally I value packs at four, but they haven’t come out yet so five has always seemed reasonable. I would rather someone else take the chance and stay with a guarantee.

The most important thing that you can do is show up. I can’t imagine not going to a pre-release. They are not only a ton of fun, but there is a huge opportunity to pick up more cards and make some cash. So for all the grinders, sacrifice some sleep, invest $20, and play some magic.

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