Value in 2016 Huddle seems to be awfully volatile. As a whole, the situations that exist with the market stem from card counts attached to certain sets, and with that a value system based on availability over anything else. It can be beneficial in some circumstances, but it can also be insanely frustrating.
As with most issues in Huddle, the bed was made last year during a period where design options were limited. Because the same pictures needed to be used for thousands of cards, the Huddle team opted to control other elements of value, such as supply, boost, and rewards. As expected, this set a pretty powerful precedent, that they are still dealing with to this day.
When the full license kicked in, you had a smattering of vocal veterans who longed for the rarity of 2014-15, and a slew of new users who were just discovering Huddle for the first time. Obviously, the crossover effect won out, and higher count cards became increasingly less valuable as the year progressed.
Cards with counts as close to 1 as possible became the high end currency that top users traded in, and it became a competition to see who could amass collections consisting of only these cards. The market soared, because many of these individuals were happy to pay in spades to users who wanted more quantity over quality.
Thus, the economy was built around the lowest count cards in Huddle, rather than the standard value driving factors. Even lower tier players with low counts could still be valuable, just because there werent many around.
If you wonder why a Limited Variant with a card count of 120, like Rodgers can be had for less than the cost to open 5 packs, its because of this situation. That’s what bothers me, because count shouldnt be everything.
Top Low Count Sets
Right now, if you want the best of the best, the Gold Legends are a no brainer. As a set, there is really nothing that eclipses these in value. The recent release of the Deion Sanders signatures are similar in value, but the lack of a marathon element, will prevent widespread chases of the individual pieces of the 4 card set.
I would even go so far as saying that most of the Legend market is controlled by a select few, who have managed to hone in on cards of this nature without much dispute from people who pull the cards outside of the group. There are strays that remain outstanding, but as a whole, the legends are close to impossible to obtain. For the most part, that is the way it is expected to be.
The same can be said for the ultra rare limited cards, which are numbered to a player’s jersey number. Because these cards can be as low as 1 as we saw with Cam Newton, the group of card count enthusiasts have done their best to obtain as many of these as possible. Frequent targets include Rodgers at 12, Beckham at 13, and a few others who combine popular players with crazy low counts.
Other sets like Dual and Triple signatures are very much sought after and in the mix, especially if the count stays below 15. Any card that goes above the 100 level is almost out of scope, which as said before, has impacted the economy to the point that its frustrating.
Why This is a Good Thing
Low counts limit supply, and for many cases, demand can be huge – especially for popular players. Because Huddle does have a lot of readily available cards, owning a low count insert below 50 or even below 25 is something that can boost your profile in a very measurable fashion.
Conversely, if a card is more available, the cost to obtain them on the secondary market is much more reasonable to manage. This means that collecting most of the inserts you want wont be too expensive, and collections with less of a laser focus can grow easily without much investment.
Why This is a Bad Thing
First, its hard to predict the card count on many releases, as there is no set number involved. This means diving in head first when counts are low can backfire easily, and the user is left with a card that isnt worth what they put in.
Even more frustrating, design and cool factor for any given card is almost a non-factor, which is what makes me the most angry of anything. Cards that I would have literally killed for last year during the head shot era have a lesser value, SOLELY because count is high(er). This is not a good thing at all. It ensures that your collection will not be worth much come any foreseeable future.
The vanity of owning low count cards is driving the higher count huddle economy into the ground, even more so as the community sees how unattainable the low count inserts really are. I have long supported that people who spend the money to get the cards deserve the prestige that comes with what they pull, but im not sure I support that everything else is valueless as a result. Maybe I have to change my approach.
This type of situation does not exist in the other apps the way it does in Huddle, and that is why I feel like this discussion is more of a growing concern. Although low count inserts obviously has clout in SWCT and Bunt, the general value of the rest of the cards isnt impacted in the same way it has been with Huddle.
Some of this situation was self inflicted by the Huddle team’s assessment about the first “premium” type cards being higher count, but the course correction may have been too drastic in both directions based on the way the economy has responded. Its as if the middle class has almost been eliminated, and its odd that this is the case.
Maybe I am overreacting, and maybe I am looking at this from a jaded perspective, but im still curious to hear what people say. I guess I just want people to appreciate more than just the cards that only a few people can own, while still letting those cards sit on their pedestal where they are. Is that possible? Im not sure anymore.