November 28 is the first anniversary of one of Magic: The Gathering’s biggest recent controversies – the $999 Magic 30 set. Just over a year ago, throngs of MTG fans lashed out at the overpriced promotional product, which contained non-legal reprints of the TCG’s most expensive cards. Despite the heavy criticism, these fancy proxies are worth thousands of dollars today.
The MTG set that made fans angry contained just four booster packs, each containing reprints of Magic cards from Limited Edition Beta. This classic set includes some of the most expensive Magic cards ever printed, including the infamous MTG Black Lotus. While they’re certainly collector’s items, the cards are not tournament-legal, making them glorified MTG proxies.
Fan criticism of Magic: The Gathering 30th Anniversary Edition only increased as Wizards of the Coast attempted to promote the set. Celebrity influencers who received the Magic 30 set for free were bombarded by negative social media comments, and one YuGiOh YouTuber issued an apology after promoting the set.
Despite their tarnished reputation, the 30th Anniversary Edition cards are still worth a lot of money in today’s trading card game market. Some are even more expensive than the original cards they’re based on. TCGPlayer values the top cards from $200 to $1,500 – and judging by the fact they’re all out of stock, these cards must have had an extremely limited print run.
(It’s worth remembering, though, that these cards came in a set that cost $999. So maybe the return on investment isn’t all that great, after all.)
TCGPlayer’s estimates don’t even include proxy versions of the MTG Power Nine. You can find evidence of sales for these cards on eBay, though. Someone bought a 30th Anniversary Black Lotus on October 20 for $2,602 (£2,058), and a Mox Jet went for $2,004 (£1,585) on October 2. Heck, someone even paid $1,599 (£1,265) in September for a sealed box.
Some eBay sellers have been way more ambitious, but we’re yet to see if anyone will pay $10,000 for six sealed copies of the Magic 30 set. Still, these sales prove one thing. However the majority of the MTG fanbase feels about the 30th Anniversary Edition, a few lone wolves are willing to splash the cash on them.