There are several bizarre financial patterns in the MTG world that do not make any sense. Some need some explanation – that’s what our financial roundup articles are for. That said, there are some financial movements that even we have difficulty explaining. That seems to be the case for one new and very overpriced Lord of the Rings card that is guaranteed to appear in every single MTG bundle! Are these MTG bundle promo cards overpriced?
The One Ring – MTG Bundle Promo
For those who don’t know, Magic: the Gathering has recently announced and previewed its biggest crossover to date. The official preview season for the heavily anticipated Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth begins next Tuesday (a week from tomorrow as of the writing of this article). That said, in order to help entice stores to prepurchase the product, a “First Look” has become commonplace for each set release. Lord of the Rings’ First Look showed off the above MTG card.
Firstly, it’s probably important to mention that many MTG players who have read this card are pretty sure that it’s incredibly powerful. All you need is a way to untap The One Ring multiple times in a single turn to draw your entire deck. The downside of this card occurs the next turn, which means its completely broken until then.
This has singlehandedly caused one old MTG card to see an absolutely ludicrous financial increase. Mind Over Matter increased from $35 to $75 over the course of a week thanks to its interaction with The One Ring. Thanks to its ability to untap an artifact in exchange for discarding a card, The One Ring and Mind Over Matter allow you to draw your entire deck. This should, hopefully, represent just how powerful The One Ring can be under the right circumstances.
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Why is a Guaranteed MTG Bundle Promo $100!?
Frankly, depending on how rare The One Ring is, the card does offer an ability that could incur a significant price on the secondary market. I do not think the above price, however, is a correct encapsulation of what a Mythic Rare that is available in every single Lord of the Rings bundle should be worth.
That’s right, the above full-art The One Ring will be available in every single bundle product that players buy. Regardless of this, copies of The One Ring’s full-art version are currently selling for more than $100 on TCGplayer! Considering that The One Ring will be so easy to access, its early pricing is rather bizarre. It should also be noted that there doesn’t seem to any particular party at fault for this. At the moment, this price is simply what The One Ring is selling for on the site.
It should be noted that The One Ring’s Bundle promo won’t even be exclusive to the Gift Bundle. According to the above graphic shared by Wizards of the Coast, these are a guaranteed find in any bundle and can also be found in Collector Booster packs, making them even more available.
This isn’t the end of the strange pricing situation with these guaranteed Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth bundle promo cards. Frodo, Sauron’s Bane also has a guaranteed full-art iteration that is a part of the panorama available in these bundles. That card doesn’t have enough sales to generate a market average on TCGplayer, but currently has an average listing price of $46. This brings the bundle’s value to $150 for just two promotional cards.
Fortunately, the last two cards in the bundle adhere to a bit of reason. Gollum, Patient Plotter, an uncommon in the main set, currently only has an average price of $6 for its bundle variant. Samewise, the Stouthearted is priced a tad bit higher, retaining a market average of $7. This pushes the current value of the bundle-guaranteed panorama to $163 at its absolute lowest.
Is This Worth it?
Unless the availability of these cards has been somewhat misrepresented, or otherwise misunderstood by us, this seems like a gross inflation of what these Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth promotional bundle cards will be worth. If The One Ring ends up seeing competitive play (it will definitely see Commander play), then I could see the value of the card being $10 or more. A big part of a card’s secondary market price, however, is scarcity. Unless the Bundles that these cards are being offered in are less numerous than it seems from The One Ring’s infographic, these cards are going to be absolutely everywhere. Important to mention is that this iteration of The One Ring doesn’t even seem to be a bundle exclusive; you can find it in Collector’s Boosters too!
Whether the Bundle is worth it or not is a question that’s tough to answer at this point in time, but, once again, unless we messed the information up in some way, do not buy these cards for their current values. They should be absolutely everywhere following the release of Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth, and, much like anything that gets reprinted in a Bonus Sheet, this will drive their value into the ground.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, though. This will make the new Lord of the Rings cards easily accessible to everyone. Having access to powerful cards for low prices means new players can easily pick up the game. This will also make some of the core characters in the Lord of the Rings IP easy to track down for new players drawn to the game by its latest crossover. All in all, I think making cards as available as possible is only a good thing – especially since the collectible aspect of MTG will not be going anywhere anytime soon.