Switching topics a bit, back to specifically the Reserve List, this is something I’ve been thinking about for a while, but I just never bothered to write it down or anything.
First, I want to comment on the legality issue, which I believe is actually a non-issue, but not because I think there are ways around it. I think it’s a non-issue, because even if there were guaranteed ways around it, it wouldn’t matter.
Basically, the reserved list (RL) represents a promise to not devalue specific cards via re-printing them. Collectors and investors rely on this promise. If WOTC were to just reprint the RL, even if there were absolutely no legal ramifications, the collectors and investors could pull all of their money and boycott WOTC, which would cause massive damages to WOTC. So, regardless of the legalities of reprinting the RL or violating the spirit of the promise, if they get too close to the line, the result will be the same.
So, I’m assuming that the RL is here to stay. Fortunately, I think the issue of card availability is separate from the issue of maintain the RL. The collectors and investors care about the value of the cards, not the cards themselves, which is the key. They simply don’t want to lose a bunch of money.
I believe both issues can be handled via something akin to a stock split, which increase the card availability without actually reducing the value of the cards still available.
Basically, WOTC reprints* RL cards, like Black Lotus, but they don’t sell or distribute the reprints normally. Then, they make a standing offer trade. Anyone who sends in an original RL card that can be validated for legitimacy will be sent 10 new versions of the same RL card.
By not distributing the new cards any other way and making this offer to anyone, the value of the new cards will always be exactly 1/10th of the old cards, and the total value of all the cards in circulation will always remain what it is. As one fluctuates up or down, the other will as well.
So, if a Black Lotus costs $5K, I can sell it for that, or trade it for 10 New Black Lotuses that are all valued at $500 each. Selling all of them would still get me the same $5k in value.
In fact, this method is likely to actually increase the overall value of RL cards from a collector’s standpoint. More people are likely to buy these RL cards, because they are more affordable, increasing the overall demand, which would increase the price of both new and old versions (because they are actually pinned to one another). Furthermore, as the new ones get bought up, the old ones will start becoming rarer, and some people would still prefer the old version, increasing the demand for only that version, but because the two are pinned, the value of the new version would increase as well.
Furthermore, because the total value is a net 0, you can actually customize the exchange rate for specific cards. For example, maybe the P9 and a select few other cards are exchanged at a rate of 10 for 1, but the duals are exchanged at a rate of only 5 for 1, depending on what the ideal exchange rate is.
So, the collector’s and investors can stand to actually make more money, while the players can get significantly cheaper versions of the cards to actually play with.
Am I missing anything, or could this actually work?