Market Watch Top 10: Links, Spellbooks, and Lightsworn

Jason Grabher-Meyer

7/28/2017 11:00:00 AM
 Comments

Welcome back to another Friday Market Watch!

For the past several weeks, sales in the TCGplayer Marketplace have largely revolved around a few groups of cards: Link Monsters and everything related to them have seen consistent interest, as players try to get a handle on the new mechanic and its place in competition. On one hand, the two big Link Monsters from Starter Deck: Link Strike have topped the sales charts since their debut – Decode Talker and Link Spider. On the other, cards played alongside them such as Blackwing – Gofu the Vague Shadow have surged as well, often outpacing the Link Monsters themselves.

From there we've seen revolving interest in Spellbook of Secrets and Spellbook Magician of Prophecy, thanks to Code of the Duelist's Spellbook of Knowledge; classic Lightsworn cards, thanks to their reprinting in Battles of Legend and the advent of the Twilightsworn theme; and Timelords, which see some competitive use in the OCG. Link Monsters and the cards associated with them have remained hot since their debut, but these three groups of cards keep trading off in position.

Beyond those cards we've also seen some individualized demand for a handful of singles: stuff like Pre-Preparation of Rites, once again in demand due to interest in the Vendread theme; and Giant Rex, riding the continual optimism surrounding Dinosaurs.

With no big sanctioned tournaments happening until YCS events return at the end of August, and with several weeks left before Regional Qualifiers begin for the 2018 season, we're left with a fairly static set of trends. So with that in mind, what were the big winners this week? Let's take a look at the Top 10 bestselling cards by volume, from Monday to Friday in the TCGplayer Marketplace.

#10: Zaphion, the Timelord

 Zaphion, the Timelord
$3.50
$1.40
$0.44
Zaphion, the Timelord136821
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN032
Level 10
Type Effect Monster
Monster Fairy
Attribute WATER 
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

Cannot be Special Summoned from the Deck. If you control no monsters, you can Normal Summon this card without Tributing. Cannot be destroyed by battle or card effects. You take no battle damage from attacks involving this card. At the end of the Battle Phase, if this card battled: Shuffle all Spells and Traps your opponent controls into the Deck. If this card is sent from the field to the GY: You can draw 1 card. Once per turn, during your Standby Phase: Shuffle this card into the Deck.


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Almighty Cards 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.44
WakiTaki 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.46
Gray Occult Gaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.75
Davis Cards & Games 1st Edition - Moderately Played 1 $0.75
Apex Cards 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.92
Resource Gaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.92

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

The most-played of the Timelords in Japan, Zaphion's made the Market Watch Top 10 several times since its release, offering a scope of effect that's extremely rare in the game today. Nobody really knows what the next format's going to be like, so big, broad effects that may be useful against a wide range of strategies in unpredictable metagames early into a new format are attractive.

Combined with a range of options – chiefly other Timelords and the possible use of Time Maiden – Zaphion's a surprisingly flexible card that could fit into competitive play in a number of different ways. That makes it a safe buy this time of year, even if it only exists on the competitive fringe compared to bigger, more important cards.

#9: Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner

Code of the Duelist Sneak Peeks arrive this weekend, bringing with them the new Twilightsworn monsters. Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner remains an incredibly powerful mill card, graveyard enabler, and recursive combo machine that builds momentum and fast OTK's, so it's no surprise that players are snapping up the Ultra Rare reprint from BLLR. If there was ever a widely successful Lightsworn variant built without Lumina, I certainly don't remember it.

 Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner
$1.62
$0.49
$0.25
Lumina, Lightsworn Summoner136827
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN038
Level 3
Type Effect Monster
Monster Spellcaster
Attribute LIGHT 
A / D 1000 / 1000
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

Once per turn: You can discard 1 card, then target 1 Level 4 or lower "Lightsworn" monster in your GY; Special Summon that target. Once per turn, during your End Phase: Send the top 3 cards of your Deck to the GY.


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sugoi tcg 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.25
Island Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.26
DNA Comics and Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 3 $0.33
Warblade 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.34
GalaxyTCG 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.35
Ashley's Cardshop 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.36

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#8: Felis, Lightsworn Archer

Felis is another competitive Lightsworn card that makes sense to grab in the run-up to Twilightsworn. We've seen it played in Championship-level Lightsworn decks before, effectively one half of the theme's core Tuning engine. And while Lumina's been reprinted many times – it debuted as a nonfoil and only got easier to collect from there – Felis is actually a bit more scarce as a newer card printed only twice before Battles of Legend.

 Felis, Lightsworn Archer
$3.62
$0.48
$0.29
Felis, Lightsworn Archer136832
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN043
Level 4
Type Tuner/Effect Monster
Monster Beast-Warrior
Attribute LIGHT 
A / D 1100 / 2000
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

Cannot be Normal Summoned/Set. Must be Special Summoned by a card effect. If this card is sent from your Deck to the GY by a monster effect: Special Summon it. You can Tribute this card, then target 1 monster your opponent controls; destroy that target, then send the top 3 cards of your Deck to the GY.


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Paladins Game Castle 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.30
Ashley's Cardshop 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.33
DNA Comics and Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 5 $0.37
IDeal808 1st Edition - Near Mint 23 $0.38
GameTimeCC 1st Edition - Near Mint 23 $0.38
CoreTCG 1st Edition - Near Mint 14 $0.39

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#7: Dark Hole

With so many decks prioritizing big Turn 1 setups toward the end of the competitive season, and the very real possibility that cards like Zoodiac Drident and Master Peace, the True Dracoslaying King will remain a part of competition whenever we see a new F&L List, mass removal has been hugely popular. But that popularity reached a new head this week, as Dark Hole broke into the Top 10 and took the Number 7 spot.

That's kind of surprising, and it's a bit of an indicator that we'll see a continuation of the “Playing For Turn 2” trend that's been so influential since the North American WCQ.

 Dark Hole
$4.44
$2.97
$2.27
Dark Hole66853
Set Legendary Collection 3: Yugi's World
Number LCYW-EN053
Type Spell Card
Attribute SPELL 
Rarity Secret Rare
Card Text

Destroy all monsters on the field.


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Pastimes 1st Edition - Heavily Played 1 $1.37
D20 Hobbies 1st Edition - Heavily Played 1 $1.75
MyPersonalTCG Unlimited - Near Mint 1 $1.76
Ziege Games Unlimited - Lightly Played 1 $1.87
Davis Cards & Games Unlimited - Moderately Played 1 $2.00
Blackstone Games 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $2.27

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#6: Linkslayer

One of the biggest cards of the past few weeks in terms of total sales, Linkslayer has seen very little competitive play overseas in OCG territory. But its ease of summoning, its flexible removal effect, and its ability to both clear the way for and extend combos, has made it tremendously popular.

And while Linkslayer's clearly Level 5 to keep it from becoming Rank 3 or Rank 4 fodder for even more ridiculous plays, it seems to have sparked a bit of a renaissance of interest in Rank 5's as well, combined with the current anticipation for a comeback from ABC-Dragon Buster and Galaxy Soldier.

 Linkslayer
$2.99
$0.37
$0.10
Linkslayer138010
Set Starter Deck: Link Strike
Number YS17-EN004
Level 5
Type Effect Monster
Monster Cyberse
Attribute EARTH 
A / D 2000 / 600
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

If you control no monsters, you can Special Summon this card (from your hand). Once per turn: You can discard up to 2 cards, then target that many Spells/Traps on the field; destroy them.


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CullowheeCards 1st Edition - Lightly Played 1 $0.10
Collector's Cache 1st Edition - Near Mint 3 $0.15
Kirwan's Game Store 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.15
Inertia Gaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 100 $0.16
RIW Hobbies 1st Edition - Near Mint 5 $0.17
Wizards Quest Gaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 40 $0.17

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#5: Link Spider

I've seen numerous players refer to Link Spider as the best Link Monster available through Circuit Break, and while that may be an extreme viewpoint, you can't deny the sheer convenience of its Link Materials and the impact it has on competitive play. Link Spider's a must-own, and it's well worth the price tag if you don't want to pick up Link Strike yourself… Or if it's becoming tough to find in your area.

 Link Spider
$2.99
$1.94
$0.95
Link Spider138067
Set Starter Deck: Link Strike
Number YS17-EN043
Type Link/Effect Monster
Monster Cyberse
Attribute EARTH 
A / D 1000 /
Rarity Super Rare
Card Text

1 Normal Monster
Once per turn: You can Special Summon 1 Level 4 or lower Normal Monster from your hand to your zone this card points to.


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Zero hour games 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $1.00
JbTcg 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $1.01
BudgetCards 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $1.04
IDeal808 1st Edition - Near Mint 4 $1.45
The Deck Box 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $1.70
ForTheFunGaming 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $1.75

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#4: Spellbook Magician of Prophecy

Spellbook of Knowledge finally arrives this weekend, though it won't be tournament legal for another few days. The ability to Spellbook of Secrets into Spellbook Magician of Propohecy, summon it to search Knowledge, and then sack Magician off to draw two cards is close enough to Pot of Greed that it's basically become the most popular draw engine in overseas competition.

Regardless of where the competitive landscape is headed here in the TCG, it's almost impossible to imagine metagames where players aren't running Knowledge, and that's put Magician and Secrets on upward Price Trends in the TCGplayer Marketplace. While both cards are still accessible, it's important to note that demand IS outpacing supply, and that could take its Toll on the availability of both cards at any time. If you don't have your playsets yet, get them while the BLLR reprints are still cheap.

 Spellbook Magician of Prophecy
$3.75
$1.13
$0.50
Spellbook Magician of Prophecy136839
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN050
Level 2
Type Effect Monster
Monster Spellcaster
Attribute WATER 
A / D 500 / 400
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

If this card is Normal Summoned or flipped face-up: Add 1 "Spellbook" Spell from your Deck to your hand.


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Wubalubb Cards 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.50
WeLitXD 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.70
One Punch Cards 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.70
Paladins Game Castle 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.72
Davis Cards & Games 1st Edition - Moderately Played 2 $0.75
Potts Gaming Store 1st Edition - Near Mint 12 $0.85

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#3: Decode Talker

A must-own fundamental Link Monster like Link Spider, Decode Talker's control effect is more powerful than it looks, and might make the most convincing argument for Links over the coming weeks. It's holding steady at about $3.50 in the TCGplayer Marketplace, riding a flat Price Trend even as the supply dwindles. Seriously, check that out: as of this writing the Marketplace stock was down to less than two pages of listings.

 Decode Talker
$5.97
$4.60
$3.69
Decode Talker138065
Set Starter Deck: Link Strike
Number YS17-EN041
Type Link/Effect Monster
Monster Cyberse
Attribute DARK 
A / D 2300 /
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

2+ Effect Monsters
Gains 500 ATK for each monster it points to. When your opponent activates a card or effect that targets a card(s) you control (Quick Effect): You can Tribute 1 monster this card points to; negate the activation, and if you do, destroy that card.


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TCGWarehouse 1st Edition - Near Mint 4 $3.69
JohnnyBCardsComics 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $3.70
Davis Cards & Games 1st Edition - Moderately Played 2 $4.00
Dice Addiction 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $4.40
Ebtoys 1st Edition - Near Mint 32 $4.50
Top Cut Chicago 1st Edition - Near Mint 63 $4.69

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#2: Blackwing – Gofu the Vague Shadow

The single most popular Link-adjacent card in the Marketplace this month, Blackwing – Gofu the Vague Shadow pulls double duty as a topnotch Synchro Material, and the bringer of free Link Materials even if it's just getting you Link Spider. Gofu was crazy value last summer when it was run chiefly as fodder for big plays with Ultimaya Tzolkin and now it's got alot more range.

We saw tremendous demand for Gofu when Links were first announced, and another surge hit a couple weeks later when it was confirmed that Tokens were valid Link Materials under the new Link mechanics. It's no surprise to see Gofu flying high in every Top 10 week in and week out now that Links have arrived here.

 Blackwing - Gofu the Vague Shadow
$5.99
$4.02
$2.89
Blackwing - Gofu the Vague Shadow129995
Set OTS Tournament Pack 4
Number OP04-EN011
Level 5
Type Tuner/Effect Monster
Monster Winged Beast
Attribute DARK 
Rarity Super Rare
Card Text

Cannot be Normal Summoned/Set. Must first be Special Summoned (from your hand) while you control no monsters. When this card is Special Summoned from the hand: You can Special Summon 2 "Vague Shadow Tokens" (Winged Beast-Type/DARK/Level 1/ATK 0/DEF 0), but they cannot be Tributed or be used as Synchro Material. You can banish this card and 1 or more face-up non-Tuners you control, then target 1 "Blackwing" Synchro Monster in your Graveyard whose Level equals the total Levels the banished monsters had on the field; Special Summon it, and if you do, it is treated as a Tuner.


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Dolly's Toys & Games Unlimited - Near Mint 1 $6.26
Buis Card Place Unlimited - Near Mint 6 $7.20
Djtcards Unlimited - Near Mint 1 $7.26
EllenBaker Gaming Unlimited - Near Mint 1 $7.27
PhantasmGaming Unlimited - Near Mint 3 $7.94
RainbowSteve Unlimited - Near Mint 8 $7.94

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

#1: Spellbook of Secrets

And finally, no one card in the TCGplayer Marketplace sold more copies this week than Spellbook of Secrets!

Wherever the game's heading card advantage is likely to be relevant, and nearly free card advantage combined with deck thinning is an attractive prospect that's created huge anticipation for Spellbook of Knowledge. I'm really eager to see where Knowledge winds up next weekend when Code of the Duelist is officially released in the TCGplayer Marketplace; as an Ultra Rare, it could easily become the single most popular card from the release.

 Spellbook of Secrets
$24.00
$1.50
$0.90
Spellbook of Secrets136864
Set Battles of Legend: Light's Revenge
Number BLLR-EN075
Type Normal Spell Card
Attribute SPELL 
Rarity Ultra Rare
Card Text

Add 1 "Spellbook" card from your Deck to your hand, except "Spellbook of Secrets". You can only activate 1 "Spellbook of Secrets" per turn.


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Davis Cards & Games 1st Edition - Moderately Played 2 $0.75
Cards Depot 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.90
One Punch Cards 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.90
WeLitXD 1st Edition - Near Mint 1 $0.90
Yugioh Black Market 1st Edition - Near Mint 2 $0.93
Davis Cards & Games 1st Edition - Lightly Played 2 $1.00

Store.TCGplayer.com allows you to buy cards from any of our vendors, all at the same time, in a simple checkout experience. Shop, Compare & Save with TCGplayer.com! - [Store FAQ]

We'll be back on Monday after the COTD Sneak Peek weekend with another Top 10 countdown. Code of the Duelist cards won't be available for pre-order for another few days here on TCGplayer, but we should start seeing them creeping into the Top 10 on Friday; be sure to check back on Monday for one last look at current trends, and then hit us up again four days later to see the first big movers from COTD.

We'll see you then!

-Jason Grabher-Meyer


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