With GBT-13 rapidly approaching and packing all sorts of new toys the set has one more surprise for us that being ZRs.
Initial speculation suggested this might be a rarity comparable to early GRs and unfortunately those fears were confirmed with the Japanese release of the set.
On top of that as of GBT-12 SP packs have also been noticeably absent.
So I thought I would share my thoughts on the situation and take a look at the potential implications of this move.
Loss of SP packs
Let’s start off with SP pack, or lack thereof.
SP packs have been a staple of each new set since GBT07 replacing secret rares which had themselves replaced secret packs. Right off the bat, this was a well-received idea, increasing not only the number of SPs in a case but also creating a more reasonable way of obtaining SPs to max their decks out.
I don’t really need to go into all the reasons why people liked SP packs but its also important to note the effect they can have on card prices. Having easier access to SPs means that more people are likely to buy SPs this, in turn, increases the supply of the base rarity counterparts and reduces price. In a game with as volatile a market as VG having some way to keep supply up is very important. Sets have a short print life and buyouts are incredibly frequent so reducing launch prices goes a long way. Just recently we have seen excellent prices on G-set 11 thanks to the changes in box structure with very few cards breaking the £10 mark at release and those that did for the most part dropped.
So it’s no surprise that G-set 12s lack of SP packs has turned some heads, and raised prices. This becomes more of an issue when you consider that power creep has stepped up its game and new cards are often 4 ofs. On top of all this, the loss of SP packs reduces the expected value of a case which can lead to less being opened and throttle supply even further.
Obviously, it’s not the end of the world and the supply of higher rarity cards has been increased by the new box structure anyway but comparing the launch prices of GBT-11 to 12 you can see a very clear difference.
ZR and the loss of SGR
Which brings us nicely to ZR a brand new rarity debuting in GBT13. And based on Japanese case openings and prices these are looking to be on a whole other level of pricing. On top of this Bushiroad has rolled GR and SGR rates together by altogether removing SGR entirely.
So breaking it down we once again see the loss of alternate versions of cards and instead an increased supply of basic GRs. Obviously there isn’t a larger supply of GR card types, in fact there’s exactly the same but without a “chase” version for collectors to get. Unlike SP packs I don’t think this too negatively effects the market as based on Japanese pricing the pricing seems to have met in the middle and although there is no longer a higher value version that means the whole supply is now the same price rather than half being more costly.
Now onto the real meat, ZRs.
I think a lot of us were expecting this but that’s not to say we aren’t disappointed. ZRs are 2 per case with 1 of each card type, that means there is only 1 Drachma and 1 Meggido per case.
As you can imagine pricing on these cards is almost unprecedented the only thing that really comes close is the pricing of early GRs and the Japanese version of ЯЯЯ (being 1 per case, however also obtainable via the trigger campaign) and the prices are sky high. Meggido is sitting at roughly £80 and Drachma a whopping £105 (based on Yuyutei pricing).
So there’s 2 sides to the argument here, on one hand we’re looking at high value chase cards which can potentially increase the supply of everything else, on the other we now have cards that easily break £100. As of right now the power level of these cards mostly mitigates the cost Drachma is more flashy than functional and Meggido is only semi-wanted in Aqua force as far as competitive builds are concerned. However that’s not to say future Zeroths will remain at this power level and a nationwide staple could be devastating to the game.
Currently without getting into slippery slopes ZRs are probably a good thing, as they encourage more boxes to opened and help increase supply, but looking ahead they could be dangerous.
On top of this the argument in favour of them was already solves by previous SP packs so the help these things do is minimal even if you give them the benefit of the doubt.
Well I guess we now know the true goal of Gyze, but for the time being I think we’re alright.
Chase cards are safe for the market and even benefit it, so long as future Zeroths continue with the trend set by Meggido and Drachma these will in all likely hood have a positive effect on the market.
But I’ve learned from playing this game for so long that Bushi often makes the worst possible decisions so I’m pessimistic about the whole situation.
All that said
Thanks for reading