More Trading Tales

Real life examples of some trades, and why Daniel was happy to have ’em.

Several months ago, I brought to you a record of trades I completed at a tournament. This past Saturday, I attended a tournament – and once again kept track of all my trades. When I was thinking what to write about this week, I remembered those records that I had kept and decided to bring you more trading tales. What’s special about my trading experiences this weekend is that I encountered many different kinds of traders, from sharks to scrubs. So, this is no ordinary rabbit… er… article. So prepare to read about the other side of Magic. … Well, prepare! Go on! You ready? Great, let’s begin.

Trade #1

4 Adarkar Wastes FOR 4 Sulfurous Springs

First of all, I was following Rule #1 for trading, which can be found here. I handed my wantlist to the person I was trading with, and he said, "I’ve got the Sulfurous Springs." He’d been asking about Adarkar Wastes, and he said, "Dude, I will SO trade you four Sulfurous Springs for four Adarkar Wastes. They’re from Ice Age." Well, I needed the Adarkar Wastes more, but I decided to help him out. I pulled out my three Sixth Edition Adarkar Wastes and an Ice Age one, and, though he wasn’t happy about the editions, he gave me four Ice Age Sulfurous Springs. (I later bought four Adarkar Wastes – all from Ice Age – with store credit.)

Trade #2

3 Force of Will FOR 1 "Hammer" Hammer
1 Undermine 3 Saproling Burst
1 Avatar of Hope 1 Jade Leech
1 Foil Staunch Defenders

The first question on your mind is probably, "What’s a ‘Hammer’ Hammer?" Well, it’s a Mirage Hammer of Bogardan signed by "the Hammer." Very unique, and a pretty addition to my collection. The next question on your mind is, "Foil Staunch Defenders??" Well, I have a little – thing – with Staunch Defenders. Ever since it came out, it’s been in every one of my W/U decks. (Maybe THAT’S why I never win…) I just like the card, that’s all.

Anyway, my four Force of Wills were on everyone’s mind all day long, and I think there were two or three traders who looked through my binder and only asked for the Forces of Will. I had to turn these guys down because they didn’t have much on my list. However, this guy had plenty. The "Hammer" Hammer was a sweet little bonus. The original deal was just the Forces and the Undermine for his cards, but he asked if I would throw in an Avatar (I have a collection of Prophecy Avatars, Legendary Spellshapers, and Winds). I asked which one, and he said, "Do you have Avatar of Hope?" "I sure do!" I responded, and the trade was made. An onlooker expressed my opinions perfectly: "Of all the Avatars . . ." But we all have our passions. 🙂

Trade #3

1 Phyrexian Dreadnought FOR 1 Greel, Mind Raker
1 Thorn Elemental 1 Alexi, Zephyr Mage

Just a little trade, here. I was running low on Alexis, and I like to keep my Avatar/Spellshaper/Wind pages filled, so this was just a little collection refresher. Just a note: Thorn Elementals seemed to be trading very well this weekend. Is the card really all THAT hard to find?

Trade #4

2 Deranged Hermit FOR 2 Pyre Zombie
1 Yavimaya Hollow 1 Avatar of Will
1 Multani, Maro Sorcerer

Basically, I just wanted the Pyre Zombies, but the Avatar of Will was a bonus. Being a strictly Type II player, trading away good Extended stuff doesn’t really bother me, and I think I got a pretty good deal (seeing as how I never play with the cards I traded).

Trade #5

4 Enlightened Tutors FOR 1 Foil Latulla, Keldon Overseer
1 Foil Arrest

This trade happened so fast that I wasn’t even sure that it happened. I had just finished NOT trading with someone, and I was putting the cards that he’d pulled back away when someone asked if he could look at my binder. I said sure, and he basically rifled through it. He got to the end where I’d randomly thrown some Enlightened Tutors in there (I think it had something to do with me wanting every non-basic land card of my Sneak Attack deck in my binder). He said that he could use them and handed me his binder. I remarked, "Wow, foil Latulla," and he said, "Will you trade the Tutors and a foil Arrest for the Latulla?" I said, "Sure!" and it was done and he was gone. It happened so fast that I don’t even remember the guy’s face. Oh well; I know I wasn’t hallucinating because I have the foil Latulla to vouch for me.

Trade #6

1 Stroke of Genius FOR 3 Ghitu Fire
1 Thran Quarry 1 Foil Collective Unconscious
1 Thorn Elemental

Again, this guy just wanted some of my random Extended stuff that I don’t care about too much. I valued the Stroke highly, so I really didn’t know if I’d be able to pull off a deal for his three Ghitu Fires. However, I was in luck: This guy is an anti-foil-ite. That is, he doesn’t seem to care for foils at all. Here’s why: Someone came over to us while we were trading and saw his foil Tangle. The onlooker exclaimed, "Foil Tangle!!" He had a thing with Tangle. The guy I was trading with said, "Take it." The onlooker said, "Really?" The trader said, "Sure. You seem to like it." Trying to make a joke, I looked at the first foil rare I came to. "Foil Collective Unconscious!!" I exclaimed in imitation of the onlooker. He took me seriously and offered the above deal. Being a sucker for foils, I took it. I guess we both ended up pretty happy with that trade.

Trade #7

4 Sneak Attack FOR 1 Prerelease Avatar of Hope
1 Utopia Tree 1 Treva, the Renewer
1 Dromar, the Banisher
2 Foil Plains

I wanted to replace the only Avatar of Hope that I had, so I pulled out the prerelease version this guy had. All in all, a fair deal, I think. Plus, this helped me on my task to make all the basic lands in my Green/White deck foil.

Trade #8

3 Grim Monolith FOR 1 Foil foreign Plains
1 Deranged Hermit 1 Foil foreign Forest
1 Avatar of Might 1 Kavu Titan
1 Avatar of Fury 1 Crosis, the Purger
1 Blazing Specter
3 Fires of Yavimaya

Now THIS guy was a total shark. He was a shark and a half, though he was about the nicest shark I’ve ever met. He was EXTREMELY persistent to get his own way, but he totally undervalued my cards and extremely overvalued his. He had a page including two black bordered Moxes, a black bordered Time Walk AND Ancestral Recall, plus a SIGNED Black Lotus! I offered him about a bazillion cards for any one of those, but he wouldn’t accept. (Oh, well… I wouldn’t expect him to.) This shows that this was the kind of guy that could get any card that he needed – that’s probably why he was so sharkish.

Here’s basically how he acted. I offered him a fair deal, and he said, "Hmm… How about you throw in three Avatars." THREE?? No way. Then, I offered another fair deal, and he said, "How about you throw in four booster packs? No, wait… five." I’m thinking "Yeah right!" There’s no way I was going to put up fifteen dollars extra for a fair deal. He went on like this, constantly trying to get three for ones. But, here’s what really irked me. We ALMOST had a good deal, and I asked him if he would throw in four Llanowar Elves (English, Sixth Edition). He refused, and, because of that request (as far as I can tell), he called off the deal. I mean, they were Elves, for Pete’s sake. He also ended up offering me a rare and three Fires for four rares. Please.

Finally, we arrived at the above deal, and I finished with him. He tried to initiate further trading with me later on, but I pretty much declined him. It was too difficult managing him the first time.

Well, those are the trades I made, though I did some more "trading." There were several people that I tried to trade with whom I just didn’t make any deals. This happened for several reasons that I find indicative of what normally happens when a deal doesn’t get made.

Most commonly, we couldn’t find anything of equal value in each other’s binder. Occasionally, one or the other of us couldn’t find anything period in the other’s binder. There was one instance, though, that shows what a real shark is like.

I handed him my list, and he said that he had the Ghitu Fires (this was previous to Trade #6 in which I got a MUCH better deal). He asked me at what I valued them, and I honestly responded, "About three dollars." That’s what I could get them here at Star City for. He said okay and started looking through my binder.

He’d come to a card and ask me how much I valued it. Almost every time I said, "I dunno. How much do you think it’s worth?" and almost every time, he said, "One dollar." EVERY card in my binder was worth at most one dollar to him. Now, would you trade a Stroke of Genius, Thorn Elemental, and Multani, Maro Sorcerer for a Ghitu Fire? No, I wouldn’t, either. To top things off, he was laughing at me the whole time for valuing my cards at over a buck, and he kept saying, "Well, you said you’d give three dollars for Ghitu Fire. . . ." If you come into this situation, just back out of it. I told him that I didn’t think we’d be able to do any business, and he said, "I’m just not seeing it happening," so we quit. And good riddance!

Anyway, that’s my account; I hope you’ve learned something. And, if you haven’t, at least you’ve been entertained. Or, forced to read this article by blackmail. But you wouldn’t say anything about that, now would you?…

Daniel Crane