Yesterday, WOTC announced a new product- Grab-and-Go Event Decks. They said:
Event Decks are designed to be strong, capable Standard-legal decks…
Each Event Deck is 60 cards, plus a 15-card sideboard—ready for all of your dueling needs! Also included: a Spindown life counter and strategy guide to help pilot your deck to victory.
So- what is this going to mean? I’ve seen speculation that these will be a bare step above the usual intro packs, with playsets rather than 1 copy each of slightly more playable commons and uncommons, and a few reasonable rares. That might be true, but I have to think that Wizards has something more in mind. When you look at the Wizard’s FNM page, you see this:
Looking for ideas of what to play at Standard Friday Night Magic? Check out these links for card and deck lists:
* Nationals Qualifiers Top 8 Decks
* Pro Tour–Amsterdam Qualifying Season Top 8 Decks
* Magic Online Events
I don’t think it makes sense for Wizards to encourage players to play decks from high-level events at FNM, but sell decks that are nowhere near to that quality.
On the other hand, it’s hard to imagine what the price point would be on Super Friends or Mythic out of a box. Based on the recent Duel Decks and From the Vault: Relics, it seems to me that Wizards is willing to undercut secondary market prices by 50-75%. If the Event Decks are priced at $20-35 (similar to other special products), then, the contents could be worth between $40 and $140. A pretty big range, sure, but if that’s the case we could see not just RDW, but something like a Sun Titan/Baby Jace UW deck like the ones that did well at French Nationals. That’s not bad.
My big question is about the source and turn around time for these decks. Are they coming from FFL? That’s probably the most reasonable in terms of making these decks current, but… they might not be good, and the sideboard could be aimed at a completely fictional metagame. If they are based on winning lists from big events, the value of the cards might not be what Wizards wants to print in a sealed product, and turn-around time probably becomes an issue. But I think that’s by far the more appealing option, if there’s a way to make it work.
I wish we’d been given more details- maybe an example decklist of a current deck that they could have sold as an Event Deck, or some information about the source of these decklists. Nonetheless, I’m pretty excited about this. I think it’s a chance for Wizards to effect a change in the price of standard, if they choose to, and I’d certainly be interested to see FFL decks if that turns out to be the source.