/ Community

Cardsphere Year Two in Review

As Cardsphere enters the terrible twos, we’ve returned with another tempting schmear of interesting statistics that we’ve gathered from everything we’ve tracked since Cardsphere went live way back on May 27th, 2017.

Cardsphere, however, would be nothing without our beloved and dedicated community, so before we get to the hard numbers, I wanted to take a moment to reflect at some of the ways Cardsphere community itself has evolved over the last year.
The most obvious change is probably the addition of me (Efren) to the Cardsphere team. I was already working with Cardsphere in the capacity of an unofficial and unpaid community manager (now just unpaid), but in addition to that, I’ve helped launch the fledgling Cardsphere Youtube channel, which currently hosts pro-tips, tutorials, and promotional videos, and will soon host other types of content that we have in the works which would be more appealing to those who already know how to use Cardsphere.

The community itself has also taken an interesting shift. It has grown larger and Cardsphere has become known enough that our bot which monitors for social media mentions has become somewhat obsolete. It still works fine and does its job well enough, but by the time someone from our Discord community can click the link to respond to a question about Cardsphere, another random internet person has already responded. This could be just because Cardsphere is a bit larger than it was last year at this time, it could be the reach of our beloved stable of sponsored content creators, and it could be that we’ve hung around long enough, helping people move enough cardboard that people feel they no longer have to be wary of trading their cards online using stored value. Realistically, it’s probably a combination of the three, but even our very own discord server is very different than it was a year ago. Most of the regulars don’t know about and were never part of Fight Club, have no knowledge of the cuts/offers war, can’t figure out why some of us say we haven’t launched, and have to ask why our mods are called The Tunnel Snakes (they rule).

These inevitable changes to the community that is the heart of Cardsphere makes me both proud at the growth and the fact that Cardsphere is loved by a larger group of people, while still somewhat wistful at the fact that we will someday have to shed our persona as a scrappy underdog run by three people in their free time.

The Data

As we have before, we'll present the data in lists, tables, and charts below, but will also provide links to download more complete data in CSV format.

Social Media

We have kept using social media organically -- we do not pay for advertising, likes, or follows. We do not use giveaways to inflate our social media numbers.

At least one competitor who invested heavily in doing this closed down this year, so we believe we're correct in not pursuing social numbers too heavily. Instead, we continue to invest in sponsorships and content creation to get the word out. We have some neat ideas about promotions for year three that we're excited to be sharing with you soon.

  • Number of Reddit subscribers: 1,196 (+198)
  • Number of Facebook followers: 406 (+73)
  • Number of Twitter followers: 1,043 (+457)
  • Number of Discord members: 695 (+105; inactive users purged quarterly)
  • Number of blog articles published: 233 (+143)

Cardsphere Draft Simulator

Another part of our marketing strategy is the Cardsphere Draft Simulator.

  • Total Number of Drafts Completed: 29,590
  • Number of Draftable Sets: 15
  • Most shared single draft: 78 replays RNA-RNA-RNA
  • Number of ads displayed: 0

Top 10 Formats by Drafts Completed

  1. RNA-RNA-RNA: 11,156
  2. WAR-WAR-WAR: 6,906
  3. GRN-GRN-GRN: 2,219
  4. UMA-UMA-UMA: 2,216
  5. RIX-RIX-XLN: 738
  6. DOM-DOM-DOM: 663
  7. M19-M19-M19: 518
  8. LRW-LRW-LRW: 216
  9. MM3-MM3-MM3: 142
  10. MM2-MM2-MM2: 141

We plan to continue offering support for new draft sets upon their release, and backfilling old sets. As much as possible, we will publish older sets in synch with flashback drafts on MTGO. Thank you to all the individuals and communities who contributed rating information for the sets!

Community

  • Number of accounts: 21,761 (+10,213)
  • Number of business accounts: 213 (+101)
  • Number of premium accounts: 116 (+42)
  • Number of users referred: 706 (+368)
  • Number of countries with Cardsphere users: 93 (+12)
  • Number of messages sent: 252,175 (+153,442)

Top 10 Countries by User Count

  1. United States of America: 16,722 (+8,081)
  2. Canada: 1,632 (+737)
  3. Great Britain: 522 (+250)
  4. Australia: 452 (+178)
  5. Italy: 385 (+85)
  6. Brazil: 276 (+41)
  7. Germany: 162 (+80)
  8. Portugal: 128 (+45)
  9. France: 111 (+65)
  10. The Netherlands: 97 (+48)

This Complete Data Set

Top 20 All-Time Senders (Number of Cards)

  1. 20,846 - Brax
  2. 12,051 - DogonSiereht
  3. 11,479 - jkatz
  4. 11,197 - Doug Montalvo
  5. 10,270 - Harmless Offering
  6. 9,978 - Green Sleeves
  7. 8,663 - Getting There Games
  8. 9,193 - Krause94
  9. 7,520 - Geoff
  10. 7,514 - Cyric
  11. 7,452 - OldSchoolCardsPls
  12. 7,101 - SA Cards
  13. 6,114 - Merlin76
  14. 6,063 - BevMo
  15. 5,663 - Burb
  16. 5,646 - Maruff
  17. 5,640 - Bfellow
  18. 5,585 - Dr. Infamous
  19. 5,140 - Justin Weinstein
  20. 5,065 - Kevin Winner

The top twenty users account for 22% of all items sent.

This Data Set to 50th Place

All Time Top 20 Traders By Count Per Country

Top 20 All-Time Senders (Value of Cards)

  1. $54,208.81 - Peter Twieg
  2. $52,811.00 - Woadworks
  3. $48,832.65 - Doug Montalvo
  4. $40,827.94 - MTG Underground
  5. $28,789.00 - FeedTheClan
  6. $24,964.63 - DogonSiereht
  7. $21,576.91 - Atomic Planet Comics
  8. $21,539.22 - Cyric
  9. $21,321.41 - Getting There Games
  10. $20,658.24 - MES
  11. $18,696.78 - BrevKicks
  12. $17,397.72 - Bfellow
  13. $16,262.88 - SA Cards
  14. $15,458.22 - gunhoe86
  15. $14,714.25 - Settlers
  16. $14,209.16 - Brax
  17. $13,225.05 - Burb
  18. $12,206.92 - poxpower - send old cards
  19. $12,106.27 - DELTA622
  20. $11,311.04 - Malcolm Moss

The top twenty users account for 18.5% of all value sent.

This Data Set to 50th Place

All Time Top 20 Traders By Value Per Country

Top 10 High Volume Trader Pairs

Otherwise known as the "People will say we're in love, Clarice" list. The number shown is how many packages moved between the two traders.

  1. 77 - FeedTheClan & Peter Twieg
  2. 58 - althemighty & Peter Twieg
  3. 48 - Doug Montalvo & Brian Doran
  4. 38 - Doug Montalvo & Woadworks
  5. 34 - Kuroari & althemighty
  6. 34 - Chuck Z & Getting There Games
  7. 31 - Doug Montalvo & MES
  8. 31 - Brian Doran & Brax
  9. 31 - Woadworks & gunhoe86
  10. 27 - Kendall Lux & MES

Top 10 Earned Badges

  1. First Volley (Received a card)
  2. Courier's Capsule (Sent a card)
  3. Rise of Eagles (Sent to USA)
  4. Foil (Sent a foil)
  5. Thieving Magpie (Received a foil)
  6. Gold Token (Deposited funds)
  7. Trade Caravan (Moon) (Sent a card worth over $25)
  8. Treasure Cruise (Received 100 cards)
  9. Into the North (Sent to Canada)
  10. Merchant Scroll (Sent 100 cards)

Unearned Badges

  1. Crusading Knight - Sent to Malta
  2. Sengir Nosferatu - Sent to Romania
  3. Imperial Recruiter - Referred 100 users
  4. King Macar, the Gold-Cursed - Received 5000 foils
  5. Duskwatch Recruiter - Referred 50 users
  6. Dwarven Recruiter - Referred 10 users
  7. Whirling Dervish - Sent to Turkey
  8. Lurking Chupacabra - Sent to Mexico
  9. Zedruu the Greathearted - Sent 5000 foils
  10. Sorcerer's Strongbox - Sent 500 sealed products
  11. Trained Condor - Sent to Chile

Some of these badges were designed to be achieved at a much later date, as mentioned last time. Still, I do feel like we're letting the Maltese, Romanians, Turkish, Mexican, and Chileans down.

Rank of Country Badges

We introduced the "send to a country" badges to increase our international trading. Anecdotally, I know it works with many users who hunt badges. This is the ranking of the badges from most to least awarded.

  1. Rise of Eagles - (USA)
  2. Into the North - (Canada)
  3. Didgeridoo - (Australia)
  4. The Monarch - (Great Britain)
  5. Conqueror's Galleon - (Portugal)
  6. Path of Bravery - (US APO/FPO Military)
  7. Saprazzan Cove - (Belgium)
  8. Ninja of the Deep Hours - (Japan)
  9. Irrigated Farmland - (Netherlands
  10. Festival - (Brazil)
  11. Jacques le Vert - (France)
  12. Traverse the Ulvenwald - (Germany)
  13. Hot Springs - (Iceland)
  14. Iceberg - (Norway)
  15. Spirebluff Canal - (Italy)
  16. Sheep Token - (New Zealand)
  17. North Star - (Finland)
  18. Horned Helm - (Denmark)
  19. White Knight - (Poland)
  20. Rishadan Port - (Singapore)
  21. Tropical Island - (Taiwan)
  22. Karn, Silver Golem - (Argentina)
  23. Aisling Leprechaun - (Ireland)
  24. Merrow Commerce - (Hong Kong)
  25. Misty Rainforest - (Malaysia)
  26. Coastal Tower - (Croatia)
  27. Snow Hound - (Switzerland)
  28. Lightning Bolt - (Slovakia)
  29. Battleflight Eagle - (Austria)
  30. Horned Troll - (Sweden)
  31. Elite Inquisitor - (Spain)
  32. Castle - (Czech Republic)
  33. Mox Diamond - (South Africa)
  34. Satyr Hoplite - (Greece)
  35. Awaken the Bear - (Russia)
  36. Whirling Dervish - (Turkey)
  37. Sengir Nosferatu - (Romania)
  38. Lurking Chupacabra - (Mexico)
  39. Crusading Knight - (Malta)
  40. Trained Condor - (Chile)

Top 10 All-Time Blog Articles by Unique Views

Number shown is the unique views of the article.

  1. The Magic: the Gathering Experiment by Phil Morris. Published July 19th, 2018 with 12,314 views.
  2. Is Ultimate Masters Good? by Markus Leben. Published November 6th, 2018 with 10,223 views.
  3. Chaos Draft: A Complete List by MrLuBuFu. Published December 8th, 2018 with 9,637 views.
  4. Mono Black Devotion in Modern by Saihaan Khan. Published February 10th, 2018 with 9,382 views.
  5. Deadly Designs: Guessing at Ravnica: Allegiance Mechanics by Markus Leben. Published November 15th, 2018 with 9,336 views.
  6. Making Mythic in MTG Arena; Estimating How Long it Takes to Reach the Top by MrLuBuFu. Published December 27th, 2018 with 9,196 views.
  7. Top 8 Characteristics of a Great Limited Format by Ethan Saks (Lord Tupperware). Published September 19th, 2018 with 5,813 views.
  8. Data Mining to Evaluate the Magic the Gathering Arena Economy by MrLuBuFu. Published April 2nd, 2018 with 5,760 views.
  9. When To Give Up On A Deck by Darin Keener. Published July 28th, 2018 with 4,364 views.
  10. What's Winning in WAR Drafts? by Ethan Saks (Lord Tupperware). Published May 6th, 2019 with 4,300 views.

The Trades

We had hopes of doubling the value traded in Year Two, but fell a little bit short of that mark. However, seeing all-time trade value over 2.5 million dollars is a large enough number that it's hard to really grok, and we're fairly proud of it.

escrow

  • Average package size: 3.89 items (+0.04)
  • Largest package: 1154 (no change)
  • Average value of traded cards: $3.43 (-$0.12)
  • Number of cards available for trade (excluding multiples per user): 3,807,635 (+1,531,227)
  • Including those that are Non-English: 95,012 (+41,512)
  • Number of Wants (excluding multiple copies per user): 271,823 (+106,786)
  • Including those that allow more than one language: 11295 (+1,800)

UniqueSenders3

Trades Per Price Bucket

Price Maximum 75th 50th 25th Minimum Count
Under $1.00 1038% 82% 70% 50% 1% 363,995
$1.01 - $5.00 1,000% 81% 75% 65% 1% 265,725
$5.01 - $10.00 403% 83% 77% 70% 5% 77,945
$10.01 - $25.00 266% 85% 80% 74% 9% 55,242
$25.01 - $50.00 857% 86% 80% 75% 10% 14,574
Above $50.01 512% 90% 82% 75% 3% 11,5349

Download this complete data set.

Here's another view.

buckets

Top 20 Traded Sets

Number is the count of items from the set which have traded.

  1. Dominaria 33,605 trades
  2. Ixalan 27,083 trades
  3. Amonkhet 21,725 trades
  4. Guilds of Ravnica 21,605 trades
  5. Kaladesh 20,849 trades
  6. Core 2019 17,220 trades
  7. Battle for Zendikar 16,727 trades
  8. Hour of Devastation 15,706 trades
  9. Rivals of Ixalan 15,489 trades
  10. Ravnica Allegiance 15,454 trades
  11. Aether Revolt 15,224 trades
  12. Shadows over Innistrad 14,970 trades
  13. Modern Masters 2017 14,234 trades
  14. Unstable 13,985 trades
  15. Khans of Tarkir 13,821 trades
  16. Iconic Masters 13,517 trades
  17. Masters 25 13,079 trades
  18. Eternal Masters 11,990 trades
  19. Ultimate Masters 11,829 trades
  20. Oath of the Gatewatch 11,546 trades

Top 20 Least Traded Sets

Number is the count of items from the set which have traded. I have removed a bunch of irregular sets in Cardsphere that don't map to a recognizable released product.

  1. Starter 2000 3 trades
  2. International Edition 5 trades
  3. HasCon 15 trades
  4. From the Vault: Dragons 20 trades
  5. Battle Royale 59 trades
  6. Beatdown 64 trades
  7. Commander's Arsenal 65 trades
  8. From the Vault: Exiled 68 trades
  9. Magic 2015 Clash Pack 79 trades
  10. Global Series: Jiang Yanggu & Mu Yanling 84 trades
  11. Fate Reforged Clash Pack 86 trades
  12. Magic Origins Clash Pack 89 trades
  13. Collectors' Edition 92 trades
  14. From the Vault: Legends 94 trades
  15. Guild Kit (Gruul) 96 trades
  16. Duel Decks: Elves vs. Goblins 101 trades
  17. From the Vault: Relics 103 trades
  18. Starter 1999 107 trades
  19. Duel Decks: Divine vs. Demonic 108 trades
  20. Deckmasters 112 trades

Complete Data Set

Top 20 Most Wanted Cards

People still like lands. This list never changes much.

  1. Snapcaster Mage
  2. Polluted Delta
  3. Scalding Tarn
  4. Steam Vents
  5. Bloodstained Mire
  6. Flooded Strand
  7. Watery Grave
  8. Lightning Bolt
  9. Verdant Catacombs
  10. Wooded Foothills
  11. Blood Crypt
  12. Birds of Paradise
  13. Liliana of the Veil
  14. Sacred Foundry
  15. Breeding Pool
  16. Misty Rainforest
  17. Stomping Ground
  18. Cavern of Souls
  19. Overgrown Tomb
  20. Hallowed Fountain

This Data Set to 50th Place

Top 20 Most Owned Cards

  1. Evolving Wilds
  2. Negate
  3. Counterspell
  4. Naturalize
  5. Duress
  6. Dark Ritual
  7. Cancel
  8. Pacifism
  9. Llanowar Elves
  10. Mind Rot
  11. Serra Angel
  12. Swords to Plowshares
  13. Brainstorm
  14. Lightning Bolt
  15. Plummet
  16. Giant Growth
  17. Disenchant
  18. Sol Ring
  19. Demolish
  20. Divination

This Data Set to 50th Place

Top 20 Most Traded Non-Foils

  1. Rat Colony
  2. Lightning Bolt
  3. Swamp (Full Art)
  4. Forest (Full Art)
  5. Island (Full Art)
  6. Mountain (Full Art)
  7. Plains (Full Art)
  8. Fatal Push
  9. Faithless Looting
  10. Opt
  11. Sol Ring
  12. Damping Sphere
  13. Counterspell
  14. Field of Ruin
  15. Steam Vents
  16. Temple Garden
  17. Glacial Fortress
  18. Brainstorm
  19. Persistent Petitioners
  20. Overgrown Tomb

This Data Set to 50th Place

Top 20 Most Traded Foils

  1. Fatal Push
  2. Nexus of Fate
  3. Swamp
  4. Forest
  5. Plains
  6. Mountain
  7. Island
  8. Path to Exile
  9. Opt
  10. Mutavault
  11. Lightning Bolt
  12. Goblin Token
  13. Spirit Token (Full Art)
  14. Thopter Token (Full Art)
  15. Unclaimed Territory
  16. Aether Hub
  17. Ramunap Excavator
  18. Elemental Token (Red) (Full Art)
  19. Clue Token (Full Art)
  20. Zombie Token (Full Art)

This Data Set to 50th Place

Data Set Showing Combined Foil/Non-Foil to 50th Place

Top 10 Most Valuable Trades

Card Set Condition Index Offer Paid
Ancestral Recall Unlimited SP $3,119.08 93% $2,600.00
Mox Pearl Unlimited SP $2,357.48 94% $1,994.42
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale Legends SP $2,500.79 84% $1,900.00
Mox Ruby Unlimited SP $2,093.00 96% $1,800.00
Mox Jet Unlimited SP $2,462.78 77% $1,700.00
Mox Emerald Unlimited SP $2,162.00 87% $1,700.00
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale Legends NM $2,306.76 59%% $1,350.00
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale Legends NM $1,274.99 96% $1,222.00
Mishra's Workshop Antiquities SP $1,859.07 72% $1,204.67
Forcefield Limited Edition Beta SP $1,361.35 82% $1,000.00

This Data Set to 20th Place

Delivery Times

We previously published an article about Country to Country delivery times. Here's an update to the data set.

This table shows the 75th, 50th, and 25th percentile delivery time in days, broken down by our top ten country pairs. The all-time count of cards traded is also listed.

From To 75th 50th 25th Count
US US 6.7 4.9 3.8 587,171
US CA 14.1 10.6 8.3 36,425
CA US 14 10.4 8 24,663
CA CA 9.8 7.2 5.3 15,613
US AU 18.9 15.2 12.6 7528
PT US 12.8 10.2 8.3 7208
US BR 17.7 13.8 11.9 5717
US GB 11.1 8 6 4907
US PT 13.3 9.7 7.8 4870
USMIL US 20 15.5 10.7 4449

Country to Country Delivery Statistics

Cash In and Out

  • Number of times funds were added: 11,582 (+6673)
  • Number of users who added funds at least once: 2,082 (+996)
  • Number of users who added funds more than once: 1360 (+679)
  • % of those who cashed in who did so more than once: 65% (+2%)
  • Most times a single user added funds: 152 (+33)
  • Largest cash out request: $5,555.56 (no change)
  • Total amount cashed out: $658,089.72 (+$461,229.72)
  • Most money ever in escrow (value of cards in transit): 65,075.13 (no change)
  • Money held by all users (size of economy): $191,968.82 (+$32,201.34)

In Summary

It's been a good year. We're proud of what we've accomplished with your help, and we're still very committed to leveling up Cardsphere. Right now we're a very small niche market with loads of room to grow, but that's a good place to be. In our first two years we've entertained a few offers to purchase or invest in Cardsphere, and have turned up our noses. Michael likes to say that remaining independent gives us a long runway. It's a good thing only being accountable to our users, and we're comfortable continuing with slow steady progress.

That being said, we do find ourselves entertaining a wider variety of options for features and how Cardsphere operates than ever before.

We're excited to see where Year Three takes us.

And we're still so happy you're coming, too.

Thanks.