Infamous Price Gouger Martin Shkreli Wants To Collect Rare Magic: The Gathering Cards

Infamous price gouger Martin Shkreli has found his next potential scheme, and it's a little less glamorous than his shady pharmaceutical company: Magic: The Gathering. Shkreli posted on the MTG subreddit yesterday fishing for details about collecting rare Magic cards. He identifies as a "new and wealthy player" who collects "wine, art and other goods", apparently unbroken by the reported $US4.5 million ($6 million) in unpaid taxes he owed last February. Source: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

The MTG community is currently embroiled in a debate over Magic's reserved list, a list of cards that publisher Wizards of the Coast says will never be reprinted. Collectors benefit from the increased value of these rare cards, driving up their prices and reselling them for a pretty penny. Players, on the other hand, are furious. Because these older cards are financially out-of-reach, certain decks using those cards are nearly impossible to craft. To many, it reads as hostile to those who aren't rich, something Shkreli, who drew controversy last year after he marked up the price of an AIDS drug by more than 5000 per cent, is intimately familiar with.

Shkreli's interest in MTG's reserved list cards, professedly the Black Lotus cards, reflects poorly on so-called "entrepreneurs" in the Magic community, according to Reddit commenters. Some say that Shkreli's curiosity will finally prove to Wizards that the reserved list is against the spirit of the game.

This isn't Shkreli's first foray into competitive gaming as an investor. Last February, The Daily Dot reported that the pharmaceutical CEO owed hundreds of thousands of dollars to League of Legends players he hired to compete on his amateur team. The team, Ex Nihilo, did not quality for the League Champion Series.

When it comes to Magic, Shkreli said on Reddit that he plays "a little, but not competitively", referring to MTG as "my game. Soon."

"Please don't make a big deal of this," he added.


    Rich douche wants to accumulate rare and valuable collectibles. More on this breaking news as it develops.

    On the upside, him buying rare cards isn't going to actually hurt anyone. He can wipe his ass with them for all I care.

      Although then there's the bit where he asks "has anyone had any insight on Hasbro's intentions for the company?"

      Perhaps he has some evil plan to buy it, then he'll get special one-off cards printed just for himself and turn up at tournaments and clean up with his invincible deck of cards that only he possesses :P

        Not that I play MTG, but Im sure they'll just ban that card from tournaments (though if he owns the company he can force them to allow it; either way it'll get real messy real fast)

      Shkreli isn't really a douche. He upped the price on that medicine because it was ineffective. He was trying to get a new drug created. Meanwhile, if people still needed that drug, he would give it to them for $1. He's doing it for the greater good, he just wants to play the villain.

        His claim was that because only a few people needed the drug the overall impact of making it unaffordable was minimal, with no apparent regard for the individuals affected.

        He upped the price to fund research, through sales, for a new drug. If he was giving it away for $1 to people who need it, how exactly is he receiving funding?

        I've got a friend in the US that suffers from Lyme disease. (I'll link to an article about him at the bottom) He needs the medicine and it is great at treating his condiiton. It's not a "Oh, this could help a little maybe", no. It helps. Full stop. IT's not ineffective in the slightest. As Kermitron said, it was because he could jack up the price and it'd only effect a small number of people. If 90% could no longer afford it, since he jacked the price up five THOUSAND percent. That's not an exaggeration. 5000%.

        If he was doing it to raise funds for research, why not use the two million he spent on an unreleased Wu-Tang clan album? Have you seen his testimonies in the court visits he made during the debacle? He was the smuggest git, grinning widely when they were taking about people not being able to afford the medicine, suffering in pain. He didn't give a shit.

        Give that article a read. He isn't just A douche, he is THE douche.

    I'm a 34 yr old long time magic player (never competitive, always just for fun) and I'd rather burn my black lotus than let this POS pay any sum for it...

    It seems to me that he'd fit right in with some of the douchebags holding WotC hostage to the Reserved List using an army of lawyers to make of a few words said by an inexperienced representative of a once young company a contractual bond whose breach they're willing to pursue to the utmost consequences. They much rather make the game worse for everybody than risking a devaluation of their "investment". Most of them are not players themselves, either.

    Thing is it's not your Black Lotus he wants. It's the ones on the secondary market. The ones that are publicly available (and sure whatever he'd be able to pickup privately) disappearing will then drive up demand and lo and behold a new price hike putting them further out of reach of players wanting to get into these formats.

    We already know what WoTC did to the prices of Duals just by releasing Eternal Masters. Imagine if some rich "investors" completely drained the secondary market of these cards. What would happen to the price and availability for the average player?

    Of course WoTC doesn't care though as Vintage/Legacy feels like it isn't a major concern anymore. As a result the reserved list is now hurting the players. The initial collectors have turned into investors and now want to protect the value of the cards they have purchased. Sure that's understandable, but I believe it's against the original intention of the Reserved List. This was about holding the current value of the time, not allowing things to continue escalating until only investors could buy certain cards, and as a player if you enter into the older formats being stuck with non-competitive decks due to card unavailability/price.

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