Over the last few weeks, Star Wars Card Trader has been one of the most enjoyable experiences for a number of different reasons. Being that it is a game based 100% on collecting, I think it creates a lively economy that hinges on many factors for value. I have noticed that there is a distinct value difference sometimes between Base Parallel Inserts and Regular Inserts, and I wanted to offer my thoughts.
A base parallel insert (BPI), refers to an insert that is created by adding a new color to the normal spectrum available in the base structure. Instead of White, Blue, Red, Yellow or Gold, the insert is Green, Purple or Orange.
A regular insert is a card that doesnt share the normal base design, such as Vintage or Widevision, etc. These inserts can potentially be further split into pack pulled inserts vs award inserts for completing sets, but that’s a different discussion.
From what it looks like, the regular insert group is more valuable for a variety of reasons, usually stemming from reward status. For instance, if I collect all 30 of the Vintage cards, I get a reward card for the marathon. If I collect all of the Purples, at the moment I get nothing. That is a prime motivator in determining elongated value among the inserts, especially if the marathon set is one that everyone wants.
That being said, rarity is usually on the side of the BPI cards, as Greens, Orange and Purples are usually significantly more rare than the regular insert sets. At the same time, like with every card, it all depends on who you are trading with, and who is the character on the card.
Most importantly, the new hotness will always be more valuable than the older cards, with a few exceptions. If you have a brand new Orange card that only a small group of people have pulled, its going to be more valuable to those master set collectors who want one of everything. After 300 copies have been pulled, maybe not as much.
Lack of Gameplay
This is where the carry over from the other apps may have an effect, as BPI cards have been less valuable in every game unless they offer a gameplay advantage. In Topps Bunt and Topps Huddle, the BPI cards usually had larger point scoring ability, thus making them more valuable than they normally would be. In SWCT, there is no gameplay, so it becomes a different tale.
Bottom line, if you like the BPI cards (which I definitely do), chase them to your hearts content. I have amassed quite a collection for very little, and its all because people have viewed the greens and the like as inferior to the other group. Its easy to pull a 7000 count Elite Soldier, but I am happy to give that up for a Green Vader. Do what you like and this game will continue to be awesome. You dont have to follow the trends at every turn.