Feature: Dealer Talk

Posted in Event Coverage on November 30, 2006

By Hanno Terbuyken

Card dealers on site are an information mine for coverage reporters. They are the ones who know what's going over the tables, what players frantically search for just to get those last six cards for their decks. This time, though, they were lost in the masses. From Flagstones of Trokair and Teferi to Proclamation of Rebirth and Bogardan Hellkite, the opinions were all over the place, spread across five dealers.

Muse Vessel

"One card that we have been selling to top pros only was Muse Vessel," said Michelle from Gaming etc. Ohran Vipers were also going well, but not as well as the one card almost everybody asked for this morning: Proclamation of Rebirth was in high demand, but not by a large margin. "Everything we put out, we sell," explained Michelle. Two cards didn't really sell that Michelle had expected to go better: Magus of the Scroll and Birds of Paradise.

Ravnica brought plenty of Birds into the market, and the saturation with the little flier is high. The same goes for Dark Confidant and Char, even though Boros parts are in demand, maybe even as a harbinger of Extended on Friday. Andy Stokinger from Queen's Domain couldn't name a single card that was selling exceptionally well, but he did notice that "Boros parts as well as cards for the Tron decks were asked for a lot." Asked again for singles, Andy named Tormod's Crypt and Gemstone Mines, selling "because many people don't have them yet."

Joe from Cutting Edge Cards had Annex as the first card that came to his mind, with - surprisingly - Ronom Unicorn clinching a close second place. He also mentioned Cryoclasm, Fortune Thief and Greater Gargadon and - not so surprisingly - Bogardan Hellkite as the red leader. But the absolute top seller at Cutting Edge was Ancient Grudge. That may well be a sign that people are preparing against Affinity for Extended Friday.

Extended also entered the mind of Eric Bertin from Parkage: "Bogardan Hellkite is our absolute top seller." He speculated that the players would even play the deck in Extended, porting the Standard Dragonstorm decks over to the older format. Tidings, Remand and Serrated Arrows also flowed over his counter. Eric also sold an unusually high amount of Invasion sac-lands (those like Ancient Spring and Geothermal Crevice), typically used to propel something expensive into play fast - Dragonstorm, maybe?

Fact or Fiction

At Troll & Toad Europe, Nigel and Shane sold an even wider array of cards. They experienced the same rush for the Urzatron that Andy Stokinger had described, only with added Coldsnap singles. Haakon, Strongald Scourge, Ohran Viper, Adarkar Valkyrie, and Scrying Sheets went in company with Flagstones of Trokair and Teferi. "We've just been filling player's sideboards," Shane noted when talking about Trickbind. The old card that snapped to the fore of both dealer's minds when I asked them was Fact or Fiction.

Overall, pieces for the Urzatron, Dragonstorm and Boros decks stood out as the three major indicators. Because they sold all day long, it's likely that these choices will also influence Extended on Friday. As for individual cards, Proclamation of Rebirth bolstered the high number of Snow White decks in Standard, and Bogardan Hellkite seems to be the overall winner of Wednesday's selling frenzy, maybe even showing up on Friday. We'll be watching it, and be sure to check out Brian David-Marshall's metagame breakdown of the Standard day!

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