Customer Review

404 of 405 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Cheap Way to get a lot of Cards!, July 27, 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
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This review is from: Magic the Gathering - MTG: Deck Builders M13 2013 Core Set Toolkit (Toy)
I am going to split my review into 2 pieces. One for new players and one for people who already know how the game works. The last portion of the review is for everyone.

**For New Players**
I highly recommend this box (plus intro decks) for a new player. The price on Amazon is unbeatable for this box. At less than $18 for this kit, you get a huge amount of cards to start off with. Great value if you need cheap cards. There is enough in this box alone to make an "ok" deck. Best purchase a few (or all of) the intro decks to have a better selection. Remember to keep your deck size as close to 60 as possible! The more cards you have past 60 increases your chance of drawing a card that isn't your best card.

**For People with Magic Cards**
If you already have a decent amount of cards, I do not recommend this pack due to the marketing strategies of this box. This contains a fixed 85 card count and the only "semi-randomized" cards are a small selection of about 11 cards. The variance in these 11 cards follows the strategies outlined in the How-to fold outs included with the box. So... bottom line here is that this box is giving you around 11 or so new cards plus the booster packs. You should get at least one 2013 booster and one 2012 booster. The intended targets for this box are new players. There is not much to gain from this box if you are looking for more 2013 cards.

I have put together an extensive analysis on which of 3 products would be the most cost effective way of getting new cards.
The 3 products being compared are:
Magic the Gathering M13 2013 Core Set Booster Box 36 Packs
Magic 2013 Core Set Fat Pack
Magic the Gathering - MTG: Deck Builders M13 2013 Core Set Toolkit (2012 Edition) 285 Trading Cards including 4 Booster Packs (current item).

~~2013 Booster Box~~
Item cost: $94.94
Number of packs: 36
Cards per pack: 15
Approx. Lands: ~30
Total Cards: 540
Unit Cost per Pack: $2.64
Unit Cost per Card: $0.18

~~2013 Deck Builder Toolkit~~ (this item)
Item cost: $17.30
Number of packs (Two 2013, rest older): 4
Cards per pack: 15
Approx. Lands: 100
Regular Cards: 185
Unit Cost per Regular Card: $0.09
Unit Cost per Land Card: $0.17
Unit Cost per Card $0.06

~~2013 Fat Pack~~
Item cost: $30.00
Number of packs: 9 (All 2013)
Cards per pack: 15
Approx. Lands: 80
Regular Cards: 135
Total Cards: 215
Unit Cost per Card: $0.22
Unit Cost per Land: $0.38
Unit Cost per Card: $0.14
Unit Cost per Pack: $3.33


This data tells us that the Deckbuilder toolkit would be the cheapest purchase. However, the Deckbuilder kits do not contain much variety in the cards and are mainly intended for new players. Bottom line, this is good for starting players only. There is not much to gain from this if you already have a collection of cards.
Currently the cheapest way to get 2013 cards is from booster packs. The cheapest way to get booster packs is to buy them one case at a time.

5 Stars if you do not have magic cards.
2 Stars if you have magic cards.
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Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 11 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 2, 2012 4:20:41 PM PDT
Andrew Funk says:
Thanks for the breakdown. I just played my first game of Magic last weekend, and this is exactly the information I need. I'm trying to understand the standard tournament format (because I want to make sure any cards I buy are playable for a while). Your review is quite helpful.

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 4:58:27 PM PDT
Luke20333 says:
You're quite welcome! I also purchased a 2013 booster box and got a decent selection of cards. 3 Planeswalkers! The price tag on the booster boxes are costly though ($90) but it is cheaper to buy them by the case than individually if you are in the market for 2013 cards.

Posted on Nov 12, 2012 2:05:13 PM PST
B. Dawes says:
Opinion on someone who sold their collections years ago and are interested in getting back in?

Posted on Nov 25, 2012 4:09:30 PM PST
Relentless says:
Perhaps prices have changed recently, but Fat Packs are not going for less than $42 these days. Otherwise, awesome review/comparison.

Posted on Dec 21, 2012 11:17:34 AM PST
J. Threlkeld says:
I'm interested in buying this for my 2 kids (both teenagers) but don't know if they will be into it or not. I understand that each player needs their own deck. I'm wondering if there are enough cards in this set to make two decks or do I have to buy two sets? I'm sure two sets would be ideal but since I don't know if they'll be in to it or not, it would be nice to buy just one set while we try it out.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 21, 2012 1:39:24 PM PST
Luke20333 says:
J. Threlkeld,

Magic is really great card game! If your kids don't have any physical cards, I would recommend trying the newest digital version of Magic. It's called Magic: The Gathering Duels of the Planeswalkers. It's available on all major consoles (Xbox, PS3) as well as on the iPad and on PC via Steam. The game runs $10 on each platform. Note Steam is offering 25% off for the game through 5 Jan 2012.

As for the physical cards, this kit is designed to boost existing decks. I would purchase the starter decks. You can snag all 5 starter decks on amazon for a steal compared to buying them separate (~$45). If they like the physical card game, than this kit would be great!! But don't overlook the digital edition; it's cheaper and you don't have to buy screen protectors/deck boxes, etc. it's all digital!

Hope this helps,

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 21, 2012 1:50:05 PM PST
Relentless says:
Excellent recommendation, Luke. I would have them try the digital version first (which also has the added benefit of helping figuring out game mechanics and have an impartial arbiter enforcing the rules), then if they stick with it, move to either starter decks or event decks. If they _really_, really like the game, then buying boosters and participating at local drafts is the way to go.

Posted on Jun 1, 2013 12:27:10 PM PDT
Psy says:
Hands-down the absolute most helpful review I've ever read for anything, anywhere. Thank you for putting in the work on this.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 5, 2013 11:32:26 AM PDT
My daughter just started and I am playing with her. She purchased this and 5 booster packs. There is certainly enough cards to create 2 decks, especially as most players seem to only play a couple colors at a time.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 9, 2013 12:02:03 AM PDT
Luke20333 says:
That is great news! The card game is a classic and almost feels like an evolved form of chess. Winning matches against your friends and family is quite rewarding. Glad you are enjoying the game. May the odds be ever in your favor!
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