Privileged Perspective 16 – Once More Unto The Breach

So today we are going to do something that we have never done before, and could theoretically never do again. Thanks to a conflux of semi-recent events, driven primarily by the new foreign card market, I am about to sign up for TCGplayer—and you’re going to go through it with me! Obviously this experiment is going to take more than a week to have quantified results, so we will see how far we get today and I’ll update you as appropriate.

AUTHOR’S WARNING: The proceeding segment is an extreme stream of consciousness, like the righteous Dream Theater track of the same name.

Okay, so the first thing I did was make a bunch of guacamole. Basically mash up some avocado, add taco seasoning, diced tomato trinity from the supermarket (not as good as pico, but way easier), and lime juice. Avocado is a super-food, which means you can eat way too much of it and not hate yourself for it! Any sort of gourmet sweet chili flavored chip will do nicely.

The next step was going to TCGplayer’s website. Down at the bottom of the home page appears to be the registration link.


Also, the USS Enterprise for some reason? How is that okay? Does CBS know about this? And I can only assume that the superhero figure is supposed to be my noted nemesis, Frank Lepore. Hang on, folks, it only gets worse from here.

Hey, log in time! This should be-



Ugh, this is gonna be a while. So, did you watch the Oscars? [Editor’s note: No.] Yeah, me neither. Hey, how about [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card]? I haven’t really talked about it on here, but I was starting to get psyched up about it on Reddit leading up to this weekend, and I guess everyone else figured it out too. A 4/4 for five mana (an easy-to-cast five to boot!) is a decent rate, and its ability is sort of in that EDH school of card advantage, where it’s an incremental gain that left unchecked can take over a game (but does little to nothing if stopped immediately). I say “EDH School” because traditionally things like rate and card advantage were only evaluated on an up-front basis—[card]Divination[/card] was two cards right now no matter what, while [card]Rhystic Study[/card] was maybe more than two cards later. Obviously both are better in certain formats, but this just highlights WOTC’s push to have interaction and development on the battlefield and not the stack.

Okay, so TCGplayer’s guy emailed me. Looks like he’s going to reset my password? As someone who got locked out of his university provided email account very often, this feels eerily familiar.


No screenshots here because I’m filling in my info. Just look over there for a minute, okay? C’mon, don’t make this weird.

Ugh, bank stuff. I can’t have this just go to my PayPal account? I’m starting to really regret this.

Okay, now they need to verify my email AND phone? They want to either call or text me. Uh, text obviously. I’m a Millennial, we fear human interaction. We capitalize Millennial, right? Probably. Damn kids.

So now that they’ve texted me, taken a blood sample, and know my entire life story, we are finally able to start selling cards! First thing I’m going to add to the inventory is a promo Pernicious Deed, because why not?


Okay, seems pretty easy so far. Let’s try a harder one, Euro promo Forest.



Luckily, I was able to find it by sorting by rarity (they let you sort by all the different columns, which is nice. I appreciate that). Here’s the next problem though.


…I guess we are just gonna keep this one.

Okay, let’s get down to the real business and start listing some foreign cards! The first thing we are going to list is a JP foil Shrine of Piercing Vision.


So basically, we scrolled down until we found the listing (there are a lot!) and punched it in. Oh! I changed the shipping price too. It was on the front page of the selling page, it lets you set flat rates for everything. I’m also listing a JP non-foil Polukranos, a JP foil Seventh Edition Gravedigger (spicy!), an English foil Scourge Form of the Dragon, four Demon of Death’s Gate, a Russian Day of Judgment…


Oh, brother. What now?

Okay, so it looks like I can only have ten cards listed at once, and I can’t move up to a higher level until I sell two things. I went ahead and dropped the quantity of those demons to three so I could throw up that Day of Judgment. Hopefully somebody buys something soon!

/Looks at clock, word count, clock again

Okay, so I guess let’s just run this down to the buzzer.

Duel Deck Questions

I am fascinated to see what happens when this Duel Deck comes out on Friday. Elspeth’s price is still firmly in the $16 range, which is about as low as it’s ever been. The best probable corollary to her is [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card]—a Standard staple ‘walker that got the Duel Deck treatment last year. The spot that the arrow is pointing to is the exact date that the product was released.


Of course, I don’t think the Jace comparison paints the entire picture. While Jace was a four-of in Standard, he was only played in a few decks. Elspeth, while typically maxed at three copies or less, is played in a wider variety of archetypes. While I’m sure people bought the Jace decks just to own Jaces, they were still four [card]Sphinx’s Revelations[/card] and more away from playing most of the Jace decks in the format. Elspeth, on the other hand, casts a wider net.


This is also probably the best Duel Deck in terms of marquee names. Elspeth is a Standard powerhouse with Cube and Commander potential, and Kiora isn’t Tibalt. In actuality, I like Kiora a lot, and it’s a very popular seller in my store (my LGS, not the TCGplayer store we started just now). While I don’t expect either to make the jump to eternal (or “non-rotating”) Constructed events, they’re both individually powerful cards that will likely hold strong casual demand. Sadly for Kiora, I expect her value to plummet (perhaps more so than Elspeth) as she becomes the unwitting casualty of people tearing open these decks to load up on Elspeths. [card]Mother of Runes[/card] is about to outstrip its demand entirely, shy of the Urza’s Legacy/FNM foils.

I’m excited that we are getting more copies of [card]Decree of Justice[/card], because that card is very cool and neat. That was our best control finisher once! You kids don’t know how lucky you have it.

The [card]Explore[/card] art is great, and there are two in the deck, which is funny. I’m glad whoever designs these was also not bullish enough to only put two copies of [card]Accumulated Knowledge[/card] in the deck—that would have been unforgivable. Still, it needs an [card]Isochron Scepter[/card] to imprint one on…

Well, I’d say we’re about close enough for government work, so let’s close out this bad boy with some:

Quick Hits!

  • My MTG finance call of the week is Ghirardelli’s Intense Dark Cherry Tango Chocolate Squares. So decadent! It’s like my mouth is swimming in a midnight sea of amaretto.
  • Haven’t sold anything on TCGplayer yet. Dammit.
  • Speaking of TCGplayer, I’m going to go win one of their 5K Open things on Saturday. I went to check out the comment section, and discovered these are your choices for interacting.


It’s like internet stratigraphy—it gets older as you go down! LOL HOTMAIL SUCKS.

  • I tried to list one of those JP Jace v Chandra [card]Counterspell[/card]s on both PucaTrade and TCGplayer (they should pay me for this week’s article at this point), and neither platform support it.
  • Saito went 11-3-1 at GP Memphis with a very affordable mono-black aggro deck. It played no mythics at all, with [card]Obelisk of Urd[/card] as a four-of as well as [card]Mardu Strike Leader[/card]. The first-ever Privileged Perspective preview card, [card]Mardu Shadowspear[/card], was also a four-of. I’m not going to play it in a tournament that I’m paying $35 to enter, but I am definitely going to start slinging it at FNM.
  • Dragons of Tarkir spoilers start soon! I can only assume WOTC is going to do the right thing and give me my preview card on time. Come on guys, be cool. WE NEED THIS.
  • If you haven’t already, check out the Brainstorm Brewery Patreon and donate. Your generous contributions keep their podcast on the airwaves, and stop writers like me from jumping ship to Star City (they wish they had me).
  • Were you aware of the crazy Wheel of Time pilot that aired two weeks ago? It ran at 1:30 a.m. on FXX, and starred friend of the program Billy Zane (is that better, Jason?). Apparently the director died and the producers are now suing Robert Jordan’s wife! Show business is crazy.
  • Whisperwood has gone up $5 since you started reading this. Wait… $6.
  • Don’t forget to submit questions for my mailbag article! I’d like at least one of them to be Magic related, but whatever. I’M GIVING THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT.
About the Author
I've been gaming MtG finance since artifacts were brown. Longtime magic player and TO. Loving husband and father. Cube > Commander.

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