Battle for Zendikar Fat Pack Review
The Battle for Zendikar is upon us! The set is now finally available and everyone is getting hyped over the Expedition lands. And by hyped I mean HYPED! With good reason too, as they are some of the most gorgeous lands produced for the game. It’s coming to something when you can build a full legacy deck with your cheapest land being an [card]Underground Sea[/card].
But that’s not why you’re here, you’re here to read about the Fat Packs! Well, that’s good, because a few days ago, this dropped through my letterbox:
Well, actually, that’s a lie, it wouldn’t fit through the letterbox so the postman had to ring the doorbell and just handed it to me… what’s that, you want me to actually talk about the Fat Pack? Well, I suppose I could.
I’ll stop trolling you all now and actually start opening it. The first thing you see when you do is this panorama:
As one of the major pieces of art of the set it’s hardly a surprise that we see this here. We have Gideon looking out at us with a facial expression I can’t quite read, either he’s pretty miffed or he might have been turned by a vampire and is looking at us the way I size up a double pepperoni pizza with stuffed crust and sweet chilli dip. Mmmmmmm…
Speaking of hungry, that dude in the background is screwed. For a mighty being of Ulamog’s stature he looks like he’d fill him up about as much as a Twiglet.
Anyway, back to the Fat Pack, there’s more gubbins to look through yet. Next out the box we have the Player’s Guide and a couple of deckboxes. The Player’s Guide, for those of you who don’t know, gives a little information on the themes of the set before displaying each and every card in full, glorious technicolour for your perusal. In theory you could collect all of these and build your own physical copy of Gatherer, but I doubt anyone has been crazy enough to do that. If you have been crazy enough to try this however, please do get in contact, it would be a lovely thing to see.
I’ve shared my feelings on the deckboxes before, so I won’t go into too much detail here now. Needless to say I am not a fan of these in their current state as they do not hold enough cards and they do not hold them sleeved. This results in pretty much every single one of these that I’ve come into possession of being binned immediately. I do have to give some credit for getting it right with the prerelease boxes for this set though, as mine was able to contain my sleeved deck, some tokens and all of the rest of my cards from the pre release as well as my little D20 too.
Speaking of which:
IT HAS A DIE IN IT!
What do you mean, that’s not the exciting part? It’s a sweet, spindownn D20 with the set symbol in place of the 20. What’s not cool about that?
I guess it also has a nice, sturdy storage box too, not the Gideon art again. See, that chap keeps popping up everywhere. I’m getting more and more convinced that he thinks I’m a black pudding. Oh, and there are nine boosters too, as always. These contain cards.
Right, let me finally get to the point. I think I’ve beaten around this bush long enough that it’s now just a pile of twigs.
Fat Packs have been selling out everywhere. There is unprecedented demand for them, and only a limited supply. Many places have been cancelling preorders because they haven’t been able to get enough stock in. At this time, there will not be a second run of them. This demand is not down to the cool picture, or the Player’s Guide, or the deckboxes or D20 or even the nine packs that come with the box.
This time it’s down to these *cue moody soft focus photo*
Full. Art. Basic. Lands.
80 of them.
The secondary market is where we have to look to find our value for these. Most places will sell Fat Packs at £30 to £35, and boosters at £3 each. Some simple maths tells us that for just the basic lands to turn us a profit we need to be hitting about 40p per land to break “even” and have the boosters as profit. Considering that these days the original Zendikar full art basics go for about £1 each you could be looking at about £80 in just the land in 2-3 years time. That’s a lot of value for a Fat Pack, and is the primary reason they have been in such short supply.
However, we should look to the boosters to actually see some of the cool new cards that Wizards of the Coast have put the effort into designing and making for us. Whenever my wife and I get some boosters we will open them together and read the flavour text to each other, then try to guess the card.
Here were a few of our favourites:
“Some Eldrazi, their purpose is obvious: suck the life out of the land, birth new Eldrazi. Others aren’t so obvious, and those are the ones that make me really nervous” – Chadir the Navigator
This one was a little close to home.
“Whatever volcanoes dream of, it seems like they always wake up grumpy.”- Raff Slugeater, Goblin Shortcutter
“With precise coordination and even enough blood spilled, one can be driven off, even brought down. But two… that’s a lot of blood.” – Munda, ambush leader
“No, don’t! Nal, it’s me… “
“No matter how big your champion, theirs is bigger. No matter how great your number, theirs are greater. No matter how voracious your appetite, they are hungrier. That is why the Eldrazi will win.”- Kalitas, thrall of Ulamog
This one sounded a little Braveheart-esque:
“For the lands you have lost and the beauty that remains, for freedom and the future, we must hold nothing back!”- Gideon Jura
And finally, one that my wife will be using regularly to me when I talk about Magic too much:
“Quiet now, you dreadful vermin”- Noyan Dar, Tazeem Roilmage
I would really recommend doing this at some point, it helps give a far greater Vorthossy understanding of the cards and picks out little bits of the story here and there that you hadn’t realised before. For example, [card]Outnumber[/card] foreshadows the reclamation of Sea Gate by the Allied forces.
Because I know you’ll want to know what rares I got in the packs, here you go:
Drowner of Hope
Shrine of the Forsaken Gods
Scatter to the Winds
With foils of [card]Mountain[/card], [card]Lantern Scout[/card] and [card]Salvage Drone[/card].
Overall, I really enjoyed opening the Fat Pack, it has a lot of ways to make value out of it, from grinding the basic lands to opening an Expedition (which I didn’t, by the way). Not only that, but the whole visual style of it is pretty cool. I would rate this product 9/10 with a mark docked off for the poor deckboxes and the fact that it didn’t have that pretty [card]Flooded Strand[/card] I was after in it!
Community Question: What was the total value of all the cards that you pulled from your Fat Pack?
Thanks for reading,