Who is the Magic: The Gathering Duel Decks Anthology Boxed Set For? Inc. Unboxing Video & Review
I’m not going to go over the Anthology boxed set in this article, we did that in the video.
You should go and watch the video now, I’ll wait…
(Apologies in advance for the low volume, we’ll better position the mic for future videos.)
I know what you’re thinking, I don’t write like a man who has a beard.
Anyway like I said I’m not going to go over the decks and content, I’m going to expand on a point I made on the video.
Who Is this for?
Who are Wizards making this Duel Decks Anthology for?
You know that feeling you get when you look through the spoilers and you spot a card and you scratch your head?
“What is it even for?”
“I can’t even think of a casual game when I would cast that rubbish.”
Well if you’ve ever thought that about a card it was probably not you that Wizards had in mind when they designed it. The dozens of cards that you were nodding your head at as you went through the card image gallery were for you. That list you made of pre-ordered playset cards were for you.
You see that’s how Wizard seem to like to make things, for all the people who play their game, not just the Spike player, not just the constructed guy but for every kitchen table Timmy or Commander cultist.
A while ago I read about the price of a card called Consuming Aberration, its a five drop mill card, it saw zero constructed play but it was holding its price at around £3. The finance sites were a little puzzled why was this awful card asking such a relatively high price?
The answer is that its a great kitchen table card, serious players scoffed at its slow clunky abilities but a whole bunch of players saw this as a decent win condition in their EDH games and other casual formats.
If you go onto any forum you will see posts lamenting the rubbishness of mill as a viable tier 1 strategy, lots of people asking for mill cards that cost less than 5 mana, but this seems to be the sweet spot for mill in casual games. The folks at Wizards know that mill is a popular casual strategy and they make cards for those people.
This brings me onto the Duel Decks Anthology. This product is also not for everyone. Not because it has weird cards or because it caters for non-tournament players but because it is an aspirational product.
A what now?
You know those people who pay the extra for the V.I.P package at GPs? Well this is a product for them. It seems harsh to say this but not every product Wizard released is designed to be available to you. The Duel Decks Anthology is like a toned down version of those crazy expensive silver Planeswalker sets that Hasbro have done for the last two comic cons.
They are supposed to be exclusive, they are supposed to be rare and sort after because that is where their value lies.
It hurts to realise that Wizards are purposefully making things that the majority of their customers will not be able to get unless they spend a lot of money but that is how the economy of it works.
Don’t get too upset though, Wizards don’t make exclusive cards, they are all just versions of cards that in most cases are easier to get a hold of.
Modern Masters 2 is going to be expensive, a lot of people are going to get upset that Wizards and shops are charging such a hefty price for these cards but Modern Master is the equivalent of going to a football match and paying the extra to sit in the V.I.P box. In fact its a little bit more accessible than that.
There will be a few different price points, for such a product. You can go all out and buy a box or two, if you’ve saved up or you have enough disposable income to spend on your hobby, or you might be able to get a few pack to draft with. This is probably where Wizards think the majority of their players are, somewhere in the middle.
You might not be bothered about drafting the set or busting packs, you might be the person who just want’s a few cards for their Modern deck and you’re hoping that the new release will bring the price down on a few cards, or make them more available than they were before.
This in turn is different from the regular Duel Decks, they are great, cheap enough for everyone who wants one to have the opportunity to buy one. They are stuffed full of cards that Wizards thought would be popular and needed in Standard. They will probably end up supporting the newer players after the core sets come to an end later this year.
The Duel Decks Anthology is not that though, its just a nice big shiny box that cost a bunch of money and looks really great. It’s there for people to aspire to be able to afford it. If you enjoy playing Magic on any level you do not need this product, sure you want it because it’s awesome but not having it won’t make your normal everyday Magic experience any worse. I do kinda wish there was a Duel Deck called Twix vs Maltesers though.
The thing is though, spending your Student loan on this might seem like a great idea now but you better get used to the taste of cheap noodles.
Interested in another opinion on the boxed set? Check out this review by the Tolarian Community College
Community Question: Would you like to see Wizards release another Duel Deck Anthology boxed set?