Last week, Bunt released the first batch of Post Season cards that are in place for the chase for the overall season championship. These cards are the mirrors of the base set for the teams they represent and the Super Rares carry an ENORMOUS boost on down. It creates a huge predicament for people who have played all year, as many of their cards now need to be replaced.
I am a huge fan of the way these cards look. They definitely represent a different flavor than the base cards, and add an element of chase just in that regard. I think that it is something that is needed to differentiate the scoring, as ill discuss in a moment. Bunt’s design team really did a great job with these cards.
This is where things are going to get very dicey. VEEERRRRYYYYY dicey. All of the post season cards have a huge boost attached to them, as the commons will now score at 2x, with an increase in boost per rarity leading to the SR cards getting an insane 7x boost. This makes the cards ULTRA playable, which in turn devalues the regular season cards almost completely. Its almost like this is a brand new season, where the previous season’s cards become worthless. Not a great message to send to your top players who have build entire lineups around Black and Fire Boosts. These cards, which were once the top scoring players to covet for the post season are now replaced with uncommon and rare cards that score as much or higher, and are much more available to trade for.
I cant understand the way Bunt is doing this regardless of the cost of these packs, as the old cards should not have been cannibalized in this fashion. Its not a good strategy overall, will piss a lot of people off, and asks that users spend thousands more dollars for cards they already have. Obviously, Topps needed to find a way to keep the VIPs buying for the playoffs when most of them have 9+ of every playable card, and this is a surefire way to make that happen. I rarely want to use “Money Grab” or “Greed” in my assessment of these things, but it would have been much more acceptable to make single specific cards available in packs that carry bigger boosts. Redoing the whole card structure is not acceptable.
The issue is further exacerbated by the fact that the playoff packs are separated out, and require a 5000 coin purchase to get the chance at one card. I understand that the regular season cards are still valuable in that they are owned, but that doesnt excuse this pack strategy. It would have been far more acceptable to replace the current packs with new playoff packs that house nothing but these cards. That would have at least been less obvious of the above mentioned situations.
Because of the existence of play in games, these first batch of playoff packs are extremely hard to justify. Two teams will only have 1 game where the cards are playable, and there is no reward *YET* for collecting every one. You have to pick your players with care, because the pendulum could swing one way and the card is out.
Its almost better to wait for the divisional packs to come out so that you know you will at least get 4 games out of your investment.
Target the same guys you normally would, as its clear that the pitchers at 7x are going to DOMINATE this format. Truncated timeframes of play mean that huge points from one guy could win you some a top spot in the rankings.
I have rarely been as frustrated with Bunt as I am with this new format, as this is such a hard pill for people to swallow. Although the switch from 2013 to 2014 was a similar shift, this is more rapid and without warning. Many people already guessed that 2013 cards would not be valuable in 2014 and stopped buying. This is completely different because of the boosts assigned to the cards.
I understand that money is important to maintaining the app, but there has to be logical uses of marketing strategy to get people to buy in. Using special inserts in lieu of giving SR playoff cards a 7x advantage makes things a bit comical.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out, but I am not a fan.