Attendees who purchased the most expensive Magic: The Gathering’s 30th anniversary convention ticket tier are finding they’re able to recoup the costs on-site, thanks to an unannounced inclusion in their goodie bags.
Those who purchased Magic 30’s $700 Black Lotus tier are discovering their complementary bags include four packs of Magic’s upcoming 30th Anniversary Edition. Considering the previously announced retail price for four packs of this is a whopping $1000, guests have already taken to flipping them to the convention’s vendors to not only get back the money for their ticket, but also likely cover travel and hotel costs too.
The first reports of these packs being included in the Black Lotus tier’s gift bags came via Reddit, with user Moonberries sharing a picture of four 30th Anniversary Edition packs alongside their copy of Richard Garfield, Ph.D. (a card that was already revealed to be in the bag). Allegedly, they were stuffed “haphazardly” in the Timbuk2 backpack that also comes with the ticket.
In a later comment, they then confirmed they then received an offer from one of the vendors set up at the convention to buy all four packs for $800 – both recovering the hefty cost of the ticket, and also making a $100 profit.
On top of the back, Richard Garfield card, and, of course, the 30th Anniversary Edition packs, the Black Lotus ticket includes VIP access to multiple areas at the convention, promo cards, sleeves, a playmat, booster packs for Mystery Booster, Dominaria United, Commander Legends, and Modern Horizons 2, and entry to the exclusive Crimson Anniversary Night Party. While all of these were previously revealed on the Magic 30 website, the inclusion of the Anniversary Edition packs was kept secret until attendees opened their bags.
The 30th Anniversary Edition is a reprint of Beta, one of Magic’s first releases, and includes cards otherwise barred from reprints, such as Black Lotus, the Moxes, Ancestral Recall, and the rest of the Power Nine. The catch is that the cards have an alternate back to regular MTG cards, meaning they can’t be played in organised play – they’re reproductions of cards, not valid game pieces – leading to many to criticise Wizards for releasing “official proxies”.
The backlash towards the Anniversary Edition has been intense. Their high price has often been the biggest criticism, costing $1000 for four booster packs of 15 cards each. As it is just four boosters, it is still incredibly rare to pull a worthwhile card from these, even ignoring that they’re not playable. After a year of endless product releases, Secret Lairs, price increases, and the announcement that Magic is Hasbro’s first $1 billion brand, the move to release $1,000 cards that can’t even be played as the game’s big 30th anniversary product has been seen as exploitative on Wizards of the Coast’s part.
The overwhelming advice from the community for those at Magic 30 who find these booster packs is to not open them, as they are vastly more valuable sealed. Just flog them to the vendors and make your ticket money back.
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