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Is Goblin Guide a fair trade for two Hallowed Fountains? Does it matter if the fountains are from original Ravnica versus Return to Ravnica? What if the Goblin Guide is from Modern Masters 2017? Does that change the value any? Will a throw in of a foil Smash to Smithereens make this a better trade? In whose favor? Is it okay to trade if you’re on the losing end of a few cents of value?
This video will show the means to answer those questions and more. It will cover setting up and maintaining a trade folder, proper trade etiquette and theory including uptrading, downtrading, throw ins and of course pricing.
Please note: this video is designed as a guide to successfully navigate trades in good faith. It does not contain tips and tricks meant to maximize your trade experience by taking advantage of a trade partner’s ignorance and/or trust, I.e. “Sharking.”
In fact rule one for this video is that if a trade that is excessively in your favor begins to form, you should always be very clear and upfront with your trade partner about this imbalance. Never taking advantage of your trade partner, even a little, is the #1 directive. If you disagree, then this video is not for you. It is recommended you shut this video off, and reassess who and how you wish to be.
TRADE FOLDER SETUP AND MAINTENANCE
While there’s no absolute method by which to sort your cards within your trade folder, having some system is preferable to having none at all. Why? Because just having a disorganized trade folder might mean that your trade partner could pass over potential trades.
This is a headache, I’m looking for the tron lands and i only spot one of them even though this folder has all three. If these had been better organized, it would have been easier for me to identify that you had the cards I was looking for, and we might have been able to work out a trade for them.
Thus, organization, if only just a little, is key. There’s many orders you can organize your trade folder by, several of which I cover in my video How to Sort and organize your collection, but the simplest if of course just by color.
TRADE ETIQUETTE AND PROCEDURE
An ideal trade is one card or one selection of cards, exchange for another card or selection of cards of equal or near equal value. Typically, an imbalance of up to about fifty cents is acceptable for a fair trade.
However, there are many factors that should be considered when trading which can complicate this: Are you trading cards that may be rapidly going up in value for cards that may be rapidly going down in value? What about trading a large a selection of low value cards for one high value card?
Before we can cover that, let’s start with the basic concept of card pricing. Where and how do you get card prices from? How do you know what your cards are worth?
Tolarian Community College any time I see a new player in a card game, whether it be yugioh, magic, Pokemon etc, I always inform them if how to price cards using tcg or inform them when they have pulled a valuable card. This helps create a form of trust with that player or with that players parents (assuming they are underage) and helps make them aware of potential ripoff artists trying to scam them out of a valuable card.
Professor I have a important question that maybe you can help me with. Is modern just decks using any cards listed on the magic website as modern legal? I mean like if i have a deck using cards from different sets listed there as legal. can planeswalker decks from older sets(listed on the website as in modern) be used in that format. I'm just trying to understand the format I have personally been playing. I have been using cards from current or older sets to build decks or using planeswalker decks against a friend doing the same. Is this modern?
Prof my trade binder is old like about 5 or 6 years old instead of keeping my cards safe they are starting to get damaged. I have a monster protector binder. Also Any suggestions for valuable commons or uncommons I should add to my binder. I have reliquary tower in there.
Also people who trade for value will offer you “unfair” deals, because they don’t need the cards you are giving them, but you are getting cards you need. If there is a card you need, losing a bit of money for it is well worth it (unless you are an investor)
We do a lot of buying and selling in our LGS. The store is fine with this and actually is very creative to make sure they also have parts of the cake. They set up an escrow service so you can trade with people you don't know with the store as the middleman, making sure you only pay after you get your goods. You can even drop the goods in the store to be picked up by another customer, or collect your pay there. I think this is healthy for both the playerbase and the store.
6:48 I GUESS that's a way to go, but how is it practically worth anyone's time to dig through a binder AGAIN to make up such a tiny imbalance? It would take an eternity to trade like that. Maybe the difference is between people who trade for the monetary value and people like me that just trade to complete collections or cards I just happen to like.
2:43 OMG, yes, please! Have a section where you put cards you've traded for that day marked as not for trade or put them in with the backs facing out, or something. No matter what though, no non-trade cards in your trade binder that are in no way marked as such! Such a waste of time.
Aether Revolt prerelease. Pulled three Fatal Pushes. One was foil. Sold all three (before the matches began- and to the judge [who was playing in the prerelease]!) for $25 cash. Biggest mistake in my career, though it was when I was returning to the game so I wasnt the brightest.
The people at my LGS is pretty easygoing with price differences. The general rule is that if the value of all of the cards are less than $20 (10 on each side) then no more of a dollar difference is allowed. If the total is between 100 and 20 then 5 dollar difference is allowed. Then if it's 200 total, then 10 difference is allowed
I've been playing magic semi casually for about 2 years, going to prereleases and the occasional draft... I wish I had enough cards with any trade value to even fill one page of a binder, let alone a whole one
In my experience, downtrading is something that is really useful for new players - as long as it is done in a way that isn't taking advantage of them. Back when I was first getting into Magic (I had been playing causally for a couple of years, but I had never been to a card store until then) I had a Thoughtseize that was over $30, but I had no use for it, and was looking to dump it. A guy ended up trading me a pile of over 150 bulk rares and uncommons for it, and I couldn't have been happier. It probably would have cost a lot more than $30 to get all of those cards as a buyer, but as a seller he would never get that much for them, so it suited both of us well. And even though most of those cards weren't very good, as a new player just getting that many rares was a big deal, and many of those cards found their way into my first couple of commander decks.
Hey guys I need some advice I have about 600 cards, half from preconstructed decks and the other half from random booster packs I used to buy from Walmart, target, and from a prerelease event I went to for dragons of tarkir. I’m going to start looking at prices of them starting with cards that (to me)seem more valuable. My problem is my cards are all from wildly different sets and years, I started during the “Frost” ice age type decks that were out years ago and from then on I would buy random boosters from random sets(I was young and never played competitively). I really want to get into playing Friday night magic with people though but I’m certain since my cards are old and random I should try to trade or get rid of them it just seems like so much work sorting out which ones are valuable
I am learning so much from this channel :) I decided to start playing MTG literally 5 days ago and I know how to get started playing, what Friday night magic is, what kind of binder sheets to get, why to use dragon guards and why double-sleeving is important for expensive cards and foils. (because humidity) that is why! so so many good hints, clues and recommendations. I am sure I have saved a bunch already from the get go. Thank you Professor.!
Didn't know about Scryfall, nice site. But I was not able to find a way, even with the advanced search, to look for foils? Am I missing something? :/
Also, what are your recommendations on binders Professor? I like the way the binder at 1:20 looks, what is it and where can I get it?
I've never really had a trade binder but my friend will sometimes have multiple so whenever he's trading I'll always watch the other person to make sure they don't try to pull something out while he's distracted. So there can be another tip have someone watch or just don't look through them at the same time. Might take longer but you'll hopefully not have any cards stolen
Sorry iam a noob here and starting out. You say for example you keep a commander file, modern, standard etc.....I have a stupid questions? I thought all legal cards were all magic cards and all playable in all format types. The only diff being each game type has diff quantities of cards. Yes or no? It's all confusing.....
Trading is a wonderful experience in my eyes. I feel like I am always up trading or down trading. Turning junk into gems, or cards of value into cards I want is really satisfying. You honestly never know who will want to trade for things you have. :)
What about things that relate to magic that aren’t technically MtG? I’ve traded for non-card items before, like one time for a deck box I needed. People sometimes throw in a spin down or cool sleeves too.
Its harder to find common or uncommon cards in my opinion. Must trad binders only have rarer or mytic. But when you ask if they have a common card like arbor elf. Every one answer the same. "Yes I have it, its back home". It took me 2 months to get hold of a simple arbor elf! Glad you talked about an common folder.
In addition to any "regular" trading, I have a system set in place with a few long time friends. Before going into the details, a disclaimer: use this only with people you really trust (in fact, you'd trust them enough to lend them some money, because that's what this system is at its core).
First step is to agree on a pricing reference. Any of the suggestions in the video could work, as long as everyone involved agrees.
Next, you need to agree on a good tracking method. Ideally, you want to track which cards were traded, by whom, when, and which was their price at the time. I use a full blown database for this (I'm a programmer after all), but a notebook could work as long as it's used rigorously.
Also, the entire group needs to agree on a "credit limit". It depends on how much you trust each other, and it could go from as low as $2 to the hundreds.
Now, whenever cards are traded, the transaction is recorded, and the players' balance is updated: if player A gives $10 word of cards to player B, then player A's balance is increased by $10, which is deducted from player B's. Balances should always add up to exactly 0. If a trade would bring someone's balance negative and below the "credit limit", then that trade shouldn't be performed.
To prevent this from turning into a chaotic disaster, there is a rule of consensus: adding someone new to the trading group, changing the "credit limit", changing the pricing reference, or any other change to the rules should only be done with full consensus from everybody in the group. Also, no cash involved, ever (if two players want to make a transaction involving cash, they should do it entirely outside this system).
The main cons of this method is that it requires significant trust among the group and very careful tracking (if you have an accountant or programmer in your group, you are lucky). The main pro is that the use of "balances" grants great flexibility: you can make a trade that is not strictly balanced today, and then maybe next week use the balance to tilt another trade in the other direction. This method also enables 3+ side trades: let's say player A wants only some cards owned by player B, player B wants some stuff from player C, and player C wants something from player A: as long as the balances are kept within the limits, the trades could be easily done. This kind of transaction would me more complicated, or sometimes even undoable, (especially when many different cards are involved) as a "regular" trade.
This system is not for everyone, but it may work in some groups just like it works in mine, so I wanted to share it.
I keep things in my binder that I specifically use to trade for reserve list/legacy staples and nothing else (unless really trying to find pieces for a modern deck quick)
People don't understand that and have a mindset like you said, "why have it in the binder then"
Down trading a foil for a non-foil version of the same card, plus a bunch of others that add up to the equivalent value is a good deal. You always have to consider how much you get hosed trading in to stores for a comparison, unless you sell online.
for me i do color and card type (in order creature, sorcery, instant then enchantment.) in my binders with rarity (in order mythic, rare, uns and commons.) when shown. for artifacts its reagular artifacts then equips then creatures. lands is by all/unique first (exm command tower) then by color then split color (white/blue, white/black, blue/red then blue/green and such.) in them.
A good one.
I remember the good old days when I would do a dozen or more trades a week. There were all those trading sites like Communal Haven and Trading Card Games, and I would go to Post Office four nights a week to send cards to Australia, Canada, Spain and all over the world, while in the daytime my postman brought me cards from players I traded with. It somehow ended with Katrina. That's why I call it the Pre-Katrina Era. Life was different those days.
My LGS allows selling cards by players as long as they are tourney regulars. If you play every week, you can sell as many cards as you want. This also motivates people to actually play as often as possible. Those who show up thrice a year with their binder, and try to sell cards, are 'kindly' asked to leave.
I often find myself down trading to profit in the long run. Five five dollar cards that see steady play for a twenty-five dollar card that sees play usually nets a profit overtime as the five dollar cards may rise an average of two dollars a piece in the same time period that the twenty-five dollar card rises around five dollars, in such a case my profit over time has doubled.
good video, I love that you are always thinking about new players. we can all remember trading away great cards in our very early days because we didn't know any better. I traded a Sword of Light and Shadow for some Shadows/Eldritch Moon bulk rares!
Speaking of trading and finance, what do you have to say about selling?
I have been a player since theros and I think I need to stop magic right now to focus on school. I do not know how or where I can find fair deals for selling cards (or how to sell them fairly)
I have two folders
My standard folder is organized as follows
W,U,B,G,R,C, by guild, by shard, by pie, four color, 5 color
My not in standard, aka modern/commander
cool promos or foils, popular staples(if I have any), same as standard
Knock out video, Prof!
Thanks, especially, for mentioning the frustrating, unproductive, but far too common habit of keeping cards stored in "trade" binders that are not actually for trade.
I ran into this the other day at my LGS. I was asking around for trades when someone remarked that they had a need for Master of the Pearl Trident. I did, so I asked to see their binder to find a suitable trade. I started looking through, and inquiring about certain cards that interested me. First, I asked about a Sheltered Thicket for my Jund Dinos deck in standard. The answer was that it was not for trade. Though disappointed, I kept looking for other cards. After the getting the same reply four cards in a row, I closed the binder, handed it back, and said "This is not a trade binder."
Please, all viewers and MTG players/collectors, DO NOT keep a binder like this person's.
Before the unbannings, someone offered me a JTMS for my masterpiece of close to equal value. I turned it down cause I had no use for Jace, and I was considering playing my card in an edh deck. I regret that to this day as the values are definitely not legal anymore.
When I got back into the game during ravnica theros standard I was trying to build U/W control and while looking through some of my old stuff I found out I had a foil cranial plating. I offered a trade with a guy, my foil cranial plating from 5th Dawn for his Jace architect of thought.... Yeah he was trying to make it seem like it wasn't the best idea for him but he knew what he was doing.
At the moment I have been putting any cards valued above two dollars in my folder. Be they mythics, rares, or even a few uncommons. While the financial value of the other bulk rares and mythics currently not included is not great, should I still put them in my binder in case they interest someone in a potential trade? Or should I stick with how I have valued my cards already?
I've had people trade their Magic cards for a copy of original Starcraft. Many, many moons ago! Also a bottle of Vodka.
Every new player should watch this video when they are testing the waters of trading.
It's always good to be comfortable with a trade and avoid people who are pushy or intimidating to get what they want. Especially just after a Prerelease event.
As the local judge and someone who runs the local trade/buy/sell Facebook page. This intimidation can become a problem when older players prey on the cards opened by younger or inexperienced players.
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