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TOPIC: Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs

Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #1

Hi all, if this has been discussed previously, forgive a relative newbie who has dived in - this is not a complaint - just an ask to better understand rarity of tokens.

In my mind I was comparing token rarity to Magic cards but as I watched the 8k purchases the last two years I have some rarity/scarcity questions:

1. With an open ended PYP that has no limits, how is the UR scarcity maintained? It seems reasonable that some URs are requested hundreds of times more than others. Is an UR actually a specific percentage of a print run for ALL tokens printed that year? Are there URs that are really far rarer than other URs? (I understand some transmutes remove specific tokens almost completely outside of collector's hands)

2. Jeff had sent a message about printing some more Onyx URs today. Are Onyx URs controlled with a method that there are never more than say 10% of every UR ever printed as an Onyx OR is the only control for how many Onyx URs exist simply tied to the number of Onyx 8ks ordered? Meaning in some years there could potentially be more Onyx URs for a specific token than the matching gold backed UR because it was not a popular PYP selection?

It looks like there is a control in the random packs for rarity much like random packs of Magic or Pokemon cards but absolute rarity in a print run because you can order every token in the set as well as an ability to PYP 500 Shirts of the Oaf seems counter to my understanding of absolute rarity.

Perhaps my thinking is flawed and this is not the same type of rarity. I just know if I could have ordered additional Timewalks or Black Lotus back in the day....well... 😀

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #2

You're correct, the quantity of each UR varies on what the UR is, because as you note they are "made to order" based on how many of each are selected as PYPs. URs should have similar quantities (I think) in "00" packs, but not from PYPs. I also agree that the quantity of each selected as ONYX varies based on how many ONYX sets are ordered.

Even Magic isn't totally tied to quantities of cards tied to how many are randomly inserted into packs, because special sets like Secret Lair sets introduce far more of some cards into circulation. Sets like Secret Lair are similar to PYPs, in that in a sense they are printed to order.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #3

ElvisPrime wrote: Hi all, if this has been discussed previously, forgive a relative newbie who has dived in - this is not a complaint - just an ask to better understand rarity of tokens.

In my mind I was comparing token rarity to Magic cards but as I watched the 8k purchases the last two years I have some rarity/scarcity questions:

1. With an open ended PYP that has no limits, how is the UR scarcity maintained? It seems reasonable that some URs are requested hundreds of times more than others. Is an UR actually a specific percentage of a print run for ALL tokens printed that year? Are there URs that are really far rarer than other URs? (I understand some transmutes remove specific tokens almost completely outside of collector's hands)

2. Jeff had sent a message about printing some more Onyx URs today. Are Onyx URs controlled with a method that there are never more than say 10% of every UR ever printed as an Onyx OR is the only control for how many Onyx URs exist simply tied to the number of Onyx 8ks ordered? Meaning in some years there could potentially be more Onyx URs for a specific token than the matching gold backed UR because it was not a popular PYP selection?

It looks like there is a control in the random packs for rarity much like random packs of Magic or Pokemon cards but absolute rarity in a print run because you can order every token in the set as well as an ability to PYP 500 Shirts of the Oaf seems counter to my understanding of absolute rarity.

Perhaps my thinking is flawed and this is not the same type of rarity. I just know if I could have ordered additional Timewalks or Black Lotus back in the day....well... 😀


I must have missed the message from Jeff about printing more Onyx UR's??? Is there a shortage? Can someone fill me in?
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world." - Albert Einstein

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #4

They put an email out to all 8k buyers. They didn't order enough onyx sets and will be sending out incomplete sets this week, to be completed when they get more in from their supplier.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #5

It was just in email to folks who placed an 8k order. They had more Onyx orders than anticipated and are printing some additional Onyx URs to make up for it. Really reasonable and also awesome that we have a better than expected demand.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #6

While the Secret Lairs do add more copies of certain cards, they are always different art and are more limited than say the number of Amulet of Treasure Finding that would have been chosen as PYPs. I think reprints in sets like Modern Masters have more of an impact on after market value the Lairs.

When looking at TD URs, I think you need to weigh the usefulness of the token along with how crowded the slot is in which it needs to be equipped. Then you need to look at whether or not it is going to be part of a transmute, like the UR shirt.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #7

balthasar wrote: While the Secret Lairs do add more copies of certain cards, they are always different art and are more limited than say the number of Amulet of Treasure Finding that would have been chosen as PYPs. I think reprints in sets like Modern Masters have more of an impact on after market value the Lairs.

When looking at TD URs, I think you need to weigh the usefulness of the token along with how crowded the slot is in which it needs to be equipped. Then you need to look at whether or not it is going to be part of a transmute, like the UR shirt.


Are you saying that there were more Amulets of Treasure Finding made than sets of Secret Lair are made? I'd have thought that Secret Lair sets dwarf the quantity of any True Dungeon UR token due to the millions of Magic players.

Regarding ONYX URs running out, I'm not surprised at all, it seems like there are far more ONYX $8K auctions than I've seen in the past. Which is great! :)

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Last edit: by Mike Steele.

Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #8

balthasar wrote:
When looking at TD URs, I think you need to weigh the usefulness of the token along with how crowded the slot is in which it needs to be equipped. Then you need to look at whether or not it is going to be part of a transmute, like the UR shirt.


I think this is an important point. At it's core this is a supply and demand equation. "Better" tokens aka ones that find there way into a lot of builds, are BiS, or similar will be higher in demand and therefore be provided more supply to meet that demand, more of that token will be released into the wild. But eventually they will go out of print at which point new supply stops. If that token continues to be in demand and the token economy is healthy that token's price will continue to rise, even though far more of that UR was put into circulation, than say a less useful token. Then down the line even though the less useful token was in much less original demand and should be rarer as fewer were released, you would think that token would appreciate, but it just won't because it never had the demand in the first place. So even though the relative "rarity" or number of units of some URs is likely much higher than others it's likely they will still hold there value. At least until something better comes along. If anything this supply imbalance artificially holds down the price of the better tokens in the short run, if they were scarcer say only available via 00 packs, there price would rise quickly from the outset aka "good" Magic:TG cards.

The token economy feels very different to me than the Magic:TG one.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #9

Mike Steele wrote:

balthasar wrote: While the Secret Lairs do add more copies of certain cards, they are always different art and are more limited than say the number of Amulet of Treasure Finding that would have been chosen as PYPs. I think reprints in sets like Modern Masters have more of an impact on after market value the Lairs.

When looking at TD URs, I think you need to weigh the usefulness of the token along with how crowded the slot is in which it needs to be equipped. Then you need to look at whether or not it is going to be part of a transmute, like the UR shirt.


Are you saying that there were more Amulets of Treasure Finding made than sets of Secret Lair are made? I'd have thought that Secret Lair sets dwarf the quantity of any True Dungeon UR token due to the millions of Magic players.

Regarding ONYX URs running out, I'm not surprised at all, it seems like there are far more ONYX $8K auctions than I've seen in the past. Which is great! :)


No, I am saying that people will order a big pile of AoTF but not a Secret Lair, also that the ratio of AoTF to other URs from the same set will be higher than any card in a Lair to the normal quantity in print of the same rare. Secret Lairs have a very short window of availability when compared to the 2 years that an UR is in print.

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #10

balthasar wrote:

Mike Steele wrote:

balthasar wrote: While the Secret Lairs do add more copies of certain cards, they are always different art and are more limited than say the number of Amulet of Treasure Finding that would have been chosen as PYPs. I think reprints in sets like Modern Masters have more of an impact on after market value the Lairs.

When looking at TD URs, I think you need to weigh the usefulness of the token along with how crowded the slot is in which it needs to be equipped. Then you need to look at whether or not it is going to be part of a transmute, like the UR shirt.


Are you saying that there were more Amulets of Treasure Finding made than sets of Secret Lair are made? I'd have thought that Secret Lair sets dwarf the quantity of any True Dungeon UR token due to the millions of Magic players.

Regarding ONYX URs running out, I'm not surprised at all, it seems like there are far more ONYX $8K auctions than I've seen in the past. Which is great! :)


No, I am saying that people will order a big pile of AoTF but not a Secret Lair, also that the ratio of AoTF to other URs from the same set will be higher than any card in a Lair to the normal quantity in print of the same rare. Secret Lairs have a very short window of availability when compared to the 2 years that an UR is in print.


I'm not sure I agree that some people don't order a pile of Secret Lairs (I think the max per person is in the 32-60 range), but I do agree from a percentage standpoint that top URs like Treasure Enhancers have a higher percentage of the print run than top Magic cards. Primarily because the main Magic sets that are randomly distributed have such high print runs. I think PYP URs are probably somewhere between 3-4 times as many sold as the random "00" URs in ten packs from token orders and TD runs (depending on how many 10 packs from TD runs there are compared to 10 packs/condensed tokens from token purchases).

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Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #11

Really excellent points guys, I appreciate the thoughts provided here. Obviously rarity in my MTG example is not the only thing that drives the actual card value, utility is a major factor. There is a base price afforded due to the rarity of the card and then there is the utility value which can be stratospheric for some cards that will never be reprinted.

Obviously TD is a different animal because there are different limits on slots and a duplicate token affords no extra value when having four of a specific card in a deck would increase your odds of pulling and using that card in a CCG. Also one can't sit down at a table at a comic shop pull out their tokens and play a TD game on demand with a random stranger which reduces the overall pool of available players.

I do see how community growth will play a role in larger print runs over time regardless of token rarity - more players should mean larger token print runs and the smaller runs of previous years will increase the value of of those tokens that are BIS (as long as there are no reprints! I am not a fan of what I paid for my Charm Bracelets before they were announced as a reprint! but I do accept that is always a risk in every collectible/rarity game unless there is a proclamation that a specific item will not be printed again)

My takeaway is that relative market value is far more than just a function of the fact that .02% of a print run was any one specific token.

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Last edit: by ElvisPrime.

Question - Actual/Absolute Rarity of URs 1 month 2 weeks ago #12

There are a couple of other differences between Magic cards and True Dungeon tokens that come to mind, in my opinion.

First, for Magic cards collectors care quite a bit about different printings. An Alpha Birds of Paradise is worth a LOOOOT more than a recent printing of one. For the most part, printings don't seem to matter as much for True Dungeon tokens (collectors completing sets of course often do pay premium prices for tokens they need). Once a token is reprinted, the early printing(s) seem to have about the same value as the reprints.

Second, there are a lot of Magic cards / sets/ sealed boxes that I feel comfortable investing in for the long-term. Not just the early sets, but even more recent items like a Dominaria Booster Box (for example). I don't really see any True Dungeon tokens as long-term investments though, from a financial perspective - I have no problem investing in them for long-term enjoyment of course! I can't really think of any token that someone could buy now and feel comfortable that it will be worth more in the long-term future. The way token development seems to work, any given token is likely to be either reprinted or replaced via obsolescence at some point (often in the 3-6 year timeframe, but sometimes tokens get obsoleted within a year or two). The closest tokens I can think of as a safe investments are Treasure Enhancing tokens like Charm of Avarice or the UR Nuggets, but even those could be reprinted in the future.

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