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If I open a pack, and it contains a foil, this foil could be any card in the set, from basic lands to the most expensive mythic rare. My question is, does each individual foil card have the same chance of being opened? Or does it follow the same distribution as boosters follow?

To illustrate, if you were to open boosters until you got 14 foils, would those foils be in a distribution equivalent to the number of commons/uncommons/rares in the set? Or would those 14 foils be in the distribution equivalent of a booster (e.g. 10 commons, 3 uncommons, 1 rare)?

Crucially, can you supply evidence to support this?

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Good luck finding in this. –  wesdfgfgd Jun 6 '13 at 17:37
Clearly you would have 10 commons, 3 uncommons, 7/8 of a rare, and 1/8th of a mythic rare. –  corsiKa Jun 6 '13 at 18:11
Anecdotally, there's roughly 1 foil rare per pack. A few comments on the thread at forums.mtgsalvation.com/showthread.php?t=263332 suggest that mythics are about 1::7 with rares and that the ratio rare:uncommon:common is about 1:3:5, more or less. –  Steven Stadnicki Jun 7 '13 at 0:56
I would have thought, considering the amount of product stores open, someone would have at some point figured out an estimate of how foils are distributed. It's hardly going to be business sensitive information –  Patters Jun 7 '13 at 8:32
Why don't you just write to WOTC and ask? as you said it can't be sensitive information. –  Pow-Ian Jun 10 '13 at 16:38

1 Answer 1

This is well understood at this point by people who open boxes. There are around 6 foils per box (36 packs), with on average 1 of those being rare and one foil mythic every 8 boxes. This follows the standard rarities (with mythic being 8:1 to rares.)

So the answer to your question is

  • 1 in 6 rare
  • 1 in 48 foil

NB - There have been some sets with additional foils or slightly different print runs -- I'm talking about the standard here, not the exceptions.

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this sounds very plausible, however this doesn't follow the standard distribution of a booster pack (10 commons to 3 uncommons to 1 rare), it sounds more like it follows the ratio of the set (i.e. each foil has an equal chance to be any card in the set), but its very difficult to tell. To follow booster distribution it would be closer to 1 rare in 2 boxes. Has anyone taken the time to record a run of foils when they were opening cards? –  Patters Nov 7 '13 at 10:01
@Rawrgramming - I was talking about mythic ratio in my standard comment. Yes they have taken that time as I said in my first sentence, that is where I got my information. Most of the major stores have a post about this. –  Hogan Nov 7 '13 at 14:49
Cool, it might be worth providing links to such information to help illustrate the answer –  Patters Nov 7 '13 at 14:51
Just put "chances of foil mythic rare" into google and then ignore all the stuff that isn't from a major wholesaler. I found 3 different posts that confirmed the above. I'm at work so I can't browse those sites now. –  Hogan Nov 7 '13 at 15:47
Thinking about it, the ratio of foil mythics to foil rares essentially has to be the same as the ratio of regular mythics to regular rares, because the sheet layout is identical - there's just a 'rares and mythics' sheet, in regular and foil versions, and whenever a rare/mythic is needed a card from this sheet is slotted in. –  Steven Stadnicki Nov 15 '13 at 18:18

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