Outside of Bunt and Kick, using your locks is something that can be very important to success in trading among the other users. Even in Bunt and Kick, which both have quite a bit of locks to use, things can start to get tight if you have been playing for a long time. With only 25 and 30 to use in Huddle and SWCT, I get questions all the time of which cards should be locked, and I wanted to offer a few thoughts on my strategy.
Starting in 2014, the team created the lock feature, which prevented a card from being added to trade offers that werent initiated by the owner of the card. If anyone tried to include the card in any trade, it would give them a message that explained it was not available.
With super limited cards becoming more and more common, locks were a game changing feature that made trading bearable again for the people who had top collections. With only 25 available at first, people quickly found that they needed more than what was there. Eventually more were added to Bunt and Kick, bringing counts high enough that a user could protect their prized cards without having to make a judgement call on which ones to leave in the wind.
SWCT also added more in a way that most people were not expecting, asking for people to buy a pack or a bundle to get another 5 for usage. Not only was this incredibly unpopular, but still far behind where Bunt and Kick were.
Huddle is the only app not to add more locks, and users are growing increasingly frustrated over not being able to lock down cards in an app that produces the lowest count stuff of all four put together.
Advantages of Locks
As with any collectible situations, having protection is a huge deal for high value goods. With so many people out to capitalize on the the situation, locks can serve as a partial safeguard against the “fishers” who send out hundreds of trades looking for people to accidentally accept.
They can also signal to other users in SWCT which characters you are looking for, as many will lock their hoard to showcase that no trades will be available for that character.
Most importantly, it has a convenience aspect as well, especially in receiving unsolicited trade offers through the feed or blind trades. A low count card can attract new users who will offer junk due to lack of knowledge, or experienced users looking to add to their collection. Not everyone is willing to sort through offer after offer on their top stuff – especially in counters for something they need.
Disadvantages of Locks
When a user locks a card, it effectively removes it from circulation. So much so that even blind trades will not show the owner. This is somewhat of an advantage to an owner, as it will prevent people from knowing who to contact for something they want, but it also hides the card from everyone. Some people do not want to remain anonymous, especially if they are proud of their collection.
Taking cards out of circulation can put strain on the economy for a certain card – especially if it is limited in availability or new. The cards where this is a problem are few in number, so I am not even sure if this is a big enough deal to mention.
Similarly, it can be discouraging to new users, who see that they are far behind from the get go, and cant even try to pick up the cards they joined the app to get. Again, this is a minor consideration, but it is what it is.
I want to say, adding locks to the game just cant be seen as a bad thing, especially with how many people get robbed of great stuff because of scams. All consequences are minor, compared to the major consequences of not having locks to use.
What Cards Should You Lock?
If you cant bear to lose a card, lock it. That’s my rule. If there are few to no offers that would ever entice you, dont leave a card out there. This mentality should be applied when weeding out lesser cards when all locks are used up, almost prioritizing the ones you cant bear to lose.
Similarly, if a card gets a lot of attention you dont want, using a precious lock could save you the hassle of all the offers from people who will harass you. Things like low count cards and 1/1s fall into this bucket, because your name WILL show up on blind trade offers no matter what. A lock will prevent that.
In SWCT, I mentioned that it is customary to lock your hoard card both as a signal and as a convenient way to avoid other hoarders from trying to raid your stash. If people see you hoard Luke Skywalker, they are more likely to offer their hoard for yours based on seeing that indicator.
What Cards Shouldnt You Lock?
Cards you would move for the right offer might be best to leave unlocked. I cant even count the number of great blind trades I have received out of the blue for a card I wasnt enamored with. You never know when the overpay is going to come, and locking a card you might move will prevent those good offers. Bad offers will come too, but that’s a risk I can deal with.
Similarly, locking base cards in the sports app is probably not a good idea, as the unlimited count and ease to acquire will make the lock worthless. Locking untradeable cards falls under the same circumstances, as there is no reason to lock a card you cant trade.
Here are the criteria I usually think about when I get something in I have to lock, but have none available. Everyone’s criteria is different, which means its in your best interest to think about how your list shakes out.
- Card Count
- Card type
- Visibility on the main sheet
Right now, I have all my locks used on Huddle and SWCT, but Bunt I have a number left to use. With few low count cards released on Bunt that I own, its easier to prioritize. My collection focus is small, so that gives me a lot of room to maneuver.
We can all hope that Huddle and SWCT catch up with the trend set by Bunt and Kick, as I feel it would be welcome across the spectrum. Locks are a luxury that shouldnt need to be a luxury, a feature that should almost be unlimited. One can only hope.