I want to share my complete disgust of your implementation of Iconic Masters with one small bright note that others have pointed out to me.
Let’s start with the positive. From what I have heard, this is a great draft format. Unfortunately, I have not had the time to draft it. Because of this, I will leave it at that.
Now for the complaints, I have 3 major issues with this set.
Iconic … it was not.
When I think Iconic, I think of Mishra, Urza, Nicol Bolas, Yawgmoth, the Phyerxians, The Thran, and the stories around these characters. I do not necessarily consider characters or planes introduced after the Mending to be Iconic with a few exceptions. Arguments can easily be made for Avacyn. Beyond that, I don’t get. Let alone they broke from the standard of now reprints from the last 3 years like they’ve done for with other master sets. The gave it a less Iconic Feel. I think the big miss was the no planeswalkers.
Wal-Mart, Target, Ready????
Let me start by saying, I have not problems with WotC distributing their games through Wal-Mart and Target. However, I do think they have an obligation to the Local Games Stores. While it may only be a guess, I would imagine that LGSs are their primary source for acquiring new players that stick with the game. Big box stores don’t hold FNM. They don’t do sealed events or drafts. These events push a lot of products. I would think it would be advantageous to push unique products like this through the local game store not just as a reward to the LGS owners but as means to strengthen the community.
All that said, I will admit that I bought 6 +1 draft packs from Target because of rumblings of packed value in these over 2-week timeframe playing the Professor’s Booster Box Game, “Draft Pack” edition using TGC mid. I bought these one at a time over the course of two weeks. Here were the value cards my opening:
- Aether Vial, Primeval Titan x 2 – $49
- Flusterstorm (Foil), Tefari, STP, Thundermaw Hellkite – $85
- Horizon Canopy, Than Dynamo – $37
- Auriok Champion, Magnus of the Moon, STP, Misha’s Bauble, Lightning Helix, River of Tears (Foil) – $34
- Horizon Canopy, Rune-Scarred Deamon, Lighting Helix $39
- Flusterstorm, Yosei $30
– While this was the official end of the game, I open one more since I came so close to the $32 threshold
- Urabrask, Serra Ascendant, and Thran Dynamo $16
It wasn’t til the 7th one that I had a real bomb. Never the less, I’m worried this is a real pattern. Maybe it was dumb luck for me but I’m worried that WoTC is seeding these packs to appease the big box stores.
Too many releases in a short period of time,
Since August 25th there has been 5 major products releases not including other products such as Duel Deck, Starter Packed, Gift Boxes and FatPacks with Unstable just a week away. I can’t believe that many sets release in a short period of time is reasonable or sustains able.
- Commander 2017 (Aug 24)
- Ixalan (Sept 28)
- Iconic Masters (Nov 17)
- From the Vault: Transform (Nov 24)
- Explorers of Ixalan (Nov 24)
November feels like product overload. I think WotC should focus on a product 8 per year cycle. That all said, I feel like they want to mimic Pokemon and trying jam as much product in front of faces as they can. I believe to prevent player release burn out WotC should only release ONE supplementary product between sets, so that would be
- 3 Blocks
- Master Set <=Should only be available at Local Game Stores
- Multiplayer (such as Conspiracy or Explorers of Ixalan)
- From the Vault OR Anthology <=Should only be available at Local Game Stores
I believe this will keep the target market engages and without oversaturating the market.