Ben’s Corner: New Day, New Products, New Location!

Ben’s Corner is back, and is now a Monday feature! Read all about the latest news, deals, and product updates from the world of StarCityGames.com. In today’s column, I talk about some exciting new changes coming to the site, including updates to our Foreign and Misprint card categories!

Welcome back to Ben’s Corner! It’s been a few weeks since my last column. I spent Thanksgiving week visiting my mom’s side of the family with my girlfriend, Kate. This past week, I stood in as editor of StarCityGames.com while Ted Knutson was off covering the Magic World Championships.

But enough about me. Let me bring you up to speed on some exciting new additions and changes coming to StarCityGames.com!

Ben’s Corner: Now on Monday
Previously, Ben’s Corner ran as a weekly Friday feature. Pete Hoefling (he who owns StarCityGames.com) and I have decided to move Ben’s Corner to Mondays. The reasons for this are legion:
1) It gives me an entire weekend to write up Ben’s Corner, and therefore I can use information from any tournaments I’ve attended that Friday/Saturday/Sunday in Ben’s Corner. For instance, if any hot new Vintage tech emerges at the Power Nine Tournament in Rochester, I’ll be able to write about it that Monday.

2) Sometimes I have instructions for ordering cards to be delivered in person at tournaments. It does more good to have those announcements on Monday, as opposed to on the day before the tournament.

3) Ben’s Corner will now be run week-long on the main page of our online store. We plan to revamp that page to include information such as shipping deadlines for product releases, dates for major upcoming tournaments, and sales-related announcements. Moving Ben’s Corner to that page, and having it be updated each Monday, is the first step in that process.

4) More people do their lunch-break shopping from work on Monday, as opposed to Friday. I’ll be able to get the word out about our newest products and inventory updates to a larger audience through this move.

The Monster
For those who are new to this column, let me explain The Monster. Over the past couple of years, we’ve collected more cards than we’ve been capable of processing. As time went on, these cards accumulated and accumulated, until we were left with literally hundreds of thousands of good (non-bulk) cards that were not put into our inventory! These boxes of cards took on gargantuan mass, and thus was named The Monster.

Over the past few months, we’ve had several additions to the StarCityGames.com team, all of whom have contributed greatly to getting through The Monster — from sorting to grading to filing. We’re about halfway through the sets — alphabetically from A to Z — and we should be caught up within the next couple of months.

What does this mean for you?

It means a greatly-expanded inventory of cards. For an example of this, take a look at Dark Ritual. Take notice of how many more Mercadian Masques and Mirage Dark Rituals we have, when compared with Urza’s Saga or Tempest. We probably have hundreds, if not thousands, of Saga and Tempest Dark Rituals in the monster, but it’s a matter of getting them graded and put into the system. I’m a stickler for grading, and I want to be sure that when I say a card is Near Mint, then that card is Near Mint.

Recently, we’ve gotten Ice Age, Invasion and Invasion Foil, Judgment and Judgment Foils, Mirage and Arabian Nights moved from The Monster to inventory. Next up are Mercadian Masques, Legends, and Italian Legends.

New Products To Be Added
You might notice that we have a few categories in our system that are relatively barren. These include Foreign Singles, Rarities and Misprints and Italian Legends cards. The truth is that we haven’t had time to upload most of these cards, since we’re still playing catch-up with the more standard-issue cards. Now that The Monster is moving along, we see the light at the end of the tunnel. We have tens of thousands of foreign and misprint cards sitting around the offices, and we want to find them all loving homes.

If you take a look at the Italian Legends singles, you’ll notice that we’ve scanned in the Italian versions of all of those cards — previously, we had just used the English scans. As I mentioned above, Legends is one of the next sets slated to be graded and inventoried. I will simultaneously add both Legends and Italian Legends cards to the system! Please note that the prices on Italian Legends cards will be lower than they are now — we had simply duplicated the English Legends prices on those cards when creating the category.

In addition to adding cards to these previously-existing categories, we will also be creating new categories for the gold-bordered World Championship singles. These cards are of great interest to the casual player, as you can put them in sleeves and use them in non-competitive play.

Ordering Cards for delivery at Power Nine Rochester
If you would like to order cards to be delivered in person at our Power Nine Rochester tournament, please note the following instructions:

1) Please have your order placed by Thursday, December 8th at Noon. I will be flying to Rochester early on Friday, and so that lead time is necessarily to make sure that your order is properly processed, pulled and packed.

2) All orders must be paid in advance by either credit card or Paypal. Sorry, if you want to pay with cash or by check, we will be unable to take advance orders. Keep in mind we will be bringing a full line of Vintage cards to the tournament location in Rochester.
3) Please select UPS Ground as your shipping method, and copy/paste the following note in the notes field of your order:

“Please deliver this order in person to the Power Nine Tournament in Rochester. As per the instructions in Ben’s Corner, please remove the shipping cost from this order”.
You will not be charged shipping on any orders delivered in person.

Best Wishes,

Ben Bleiweiss
General Manager, StarCityGames.com