Collector pulls mint Magic: The Gathering card worth $27,000


Of course it was Black Lotus.

At this point, the value of that damn card is self-perpetuating. It’s a decent card, and reasonably rare, but it serves more as a prestige item than anything else. The chief source of it’s “value” is in the semi-legendary status it has among people familiar with the game. Everyone has heard about Black Lotus, and so when you actually find one it’s like finding a four leaf clover.

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I once had a beta Mox Pearl. I bought it for 50, sold it for 100 when I felt I outgrew M:tG and wanted to pay for a university exchange in Japan.

A few years ago I found out Magic was still totally a thing. I sometimes regret that choice to sell, but that regret is tempered by my ignorance of what that card is actually worth today.

Anyway, I am happy for this person and wish them all the best. Well played, sir!

I had a similar thing- Sold my cards in the mid-90s for around $600 and bought a car. As I understand it, 3 of the cards I had are now worth that much by themselves. I had probably around 8000 cards total, mostly unlimited and revised. A bunch of them are in the $100 range now.

The Mox is around $800 these days.

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I had a roommate who collected MTG vigorously he’d burn the common ones he didn’t want in the fireplace. They’d turn odd blues and orange, I am sure it was toxic. He’d make a ton of money, back in the mid 90s, at trading meets and etc. I can only imagine what it is like now.

Damn! I could have sold that to pay for my new iPhone!

…we are obviously terrible collectors.

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If I have to wallow in my bad collecting decisions, so does everyone else.

You’re welcome.


I’m sure my mistakes will be in the opposite direction. I’ll be too lazy to sell my cards until they are worthless again. Got suitcases full of them, and several binders packed with rares and foils. Oh, well.


I like toys. I deliberately don’t say I’m a “toy collector.” In my experience, collectors are the enemy of people who just like to play with freakin’ toys. They’re the reason that older stuff goes for absolutely ludicrous prices. But beyond that… There’s something deeply depressing, even disgusting, about someone who claims to love toys, but doesn’t take them out of their boxes and play with them. It’s like those people who buy old books by the foot, because they want to look like the sort of person who has a lot of books, and then they never actually read them.

It’s probably not nearly so bad with Magic. Rarity is an intentional factor of the game; some cards are supposed to be hard to find, so that’s okay. But “collectors” still give me a bit of a bad taste in my mouth.


I’m surprised it hasn’t been said.

But I’d tap that…


Magic is slightly different in that you don’t really need the original physical cards to play the game - you can relabel new ones (in sharpie if so desired), print whatever you want and put it in opaque-backed sleeves, or even use one of the several PC versions. I’m not sure if that leaves the original cards more collectable (since you can keep them safely stored yet still play), or less (since you don’t actually need them).

Once again, I just do not possess whatever area of the brain is stimulated by a) opening shit up on you tube and b) collecting a piece of paper that is rare only because they didn’t issue that many of them - not because its brethren were lost to time or because the artwork is so beautiful and precious. I feel happy for this guy, he got the Lotus! but sometimes I wonder if something is wrong with me that I don’t get this.

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Under your rules, every game is winnable with a sharpie.

Not really.
(Quick caveat, haven’t played for nearly a decade myself).
Back when I played, generally folks had to own the cards they were proxying, at least as many as were in a particular deck, and, if it was one that someone was likely to call “bullshit” on, generally have them with them (suitably protected, granted), or have some folk who would at least vouch for that fact they owned it.

But, even ignoring that, a deck entirely of rare cards dosn’t make you a winner in Magic. Rare cards are kind of like very specialized tools. They are extremely useful in specific situations, but, often, a hammer and screwdriver (aka, commons) do just as well. This isn’t like being able to make all your pieces queens in chess, more like an entire board of knights all with various quirks. Designing a deck that has interesting mechanics is a game in and of itself, to the point where I’ve seen folks who put together extremely interesting and elegantly designed decks but weren’t really “tournament” types, and people who employed cards like a blunt instrument but performed amazingly in actual games.

Being able to “proxy” cards that you can’t actually find/afford really wouldn’t change much.

Under those rules, it’s possible to cheat if you can draw unnoticed on your cards, yes. I somehow fail to see the problem if you’re just playing for fun - there are many ways to cheat at MtG, and this would be one of the easier to notice. (And if you’re really really worried - require your opponent to countersign them before you start.)

I used to play a lot of Magic, when it first started out. Then I started dating and gave away all my cards. Still pretty sure I made the right choice.

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I get the best of both worlds. I play against my girlfriend.


The skill at magic is deck building, card interaction, timing, etc, and should not depend upon one’s ability to afford the game. The way the game is sold is only a marketing trick and has nothing to do with gameplay.

I would happily play against someone with a deck of DIY index cards if they chose.

There are a bunch of people in the Youtube comments claiming how you can’t get a Tropical Island and Black Lotus in the same alpha starter pack, and so are claiming this is a resealed pack done for dramatic effect. Of course, none of those comments are providing an explanation for why the guy who made the video happened to have a Black Lotus lying around and wanted to do something theatric with a 9.5-10 mint alpha lotus instead of keeping it in a protective covering to retain its value…

LOL. I gave all my cards to a guy for a crappy drum set.