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I used to play MtG when I was younger, around '95-98(?), and found an old box at my parents with a lot of cards that I'd be more than willing to part with. I know some at least are from edition IV. And for some reason there are some spanish, german and italian cards as well that I think I got in some sort of collector's box with rare packages.

I got the TCGplayer app for the phone that's working great for the most part, but some cards it can't determine the value of because there are none for sale. There are a few cards that it thinks are German that are actually in English, but I'm guessing this is a glitch and not because there's something odd with the card it's scanning.

Question: How would I go about valuing cards like that when I have very little understanding of what a realistic value is, and there are none for sale to show me a good base line?

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Option 1: Look the cards up on cardmarket.com or other secondary market sites:

Have you tried any other site except for TCGPlayer? There are numerous other sites which let you gain insight on prices of MTG-cards. I'm guessing you live in the US so you may not know about Cardmarket.

Note that this site is mostly used in europe, so prices may differ significantly from the prices in the US. But on the other hand you will find pretty good comparable figures since people often offer cards in foreign languages. Cardmarket also lets you filter by languages and card gradings.

Other options: CardKingdom.com, magicmadhouse.com, mtgmintcard.com

Option 2: Determine the approximate Value of Cards on your own:

Since the cards you're looking at are pretty old, they are most probably relevant in the formats Vintage or Legacy. Are your cards present in any of the meta decks? If not, they probably won't be worth too much. If they are not in any of the meta decks, how do you evaluate their power level?

  • Does it have Strong stats? (if it is a creature)
  • Combo potential?
  • Good Value for low mana costs?

If you can answer any of these questions with yes, they may have some value. Certainly this approach can only give you a seperation between potentially valuable cards and bulk. You can never exactly tell the value of a card without having access to the market.

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    I'm actually from Sweden, but I've long been removed from the whole TCG-community so I didn't know about that site. Since the cards I have that are not in English are actually in other European languages, so that might be a good thing with that market. It's an excellent suggestion to look into. As for option 2, because it's been over 20 years since I played, I really have no idea how powerful a card is based on stats or other things. But it's a good answer to what I was asking about, except the bit about me having very little understanding of today's power levels. – Daniel Nordh Mar 17 at 16:05
  • @DanielNordh If you're Swedish, the national site SvenskaMagic should be of use. – August Janse Apr 7 at 8:03
  • @AugustJanse Wow, that site looks straight from the 00's :) Not sure how it helps with valuing the cards. Perhaps I'm missing the function because the design is so dated? Looks more like a way to get in contact with swedish MtG players? – Daniel Nordh Apr 8 at 6:09
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    @DanielNordh There is a database of cards with individual price histories ("Kortpärmen"). The site also has functionality for selling and auctioning out your individual cards to other players ("Torget"), though that will cost you a 50 SEK membership of the non-profit org. – August Janse Apr 8 at 7:21
  • @AugustJanse Ah, thank you! The site really could use a face lift to help newbies like me. :) – Daniel Nordh Apr 8 at 7:51
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scryfall is a excellent search engine, and it gives you the average prices in euro based on cardmarket data. So you can use it to search one specific card in one specific edition, and get to know that a 4th edition of Shivan Dragon is around 2€.

It also helps with the FBB editions (foreign black border). When a card was a reedition, but printed for the first time in a specific language, it would be with black borders instead of white. Those are more valuable for people that want black-bordered cards that are too expensive in their original black-bordered english edition, so you might want to have a special attention on these.

Scryfall also allows you to have a view by set and sort by price in euro, allowing you to see which cards are over a specific value (2€ for example). Use the "checklist" view for that, sorted by prices in euro. Here's the list of white-bordered 4th edition cards using that view.

To find the available sets, you have a specific link in the top menu.

Here's what I did lately to find the prices of my cards.

First, I did sort them by set and color in WUBRG order (white, blue, black, red, green, artifact and multiolored). This can be tricky as some sets look similar in early editions, so you may need to read a guide first. Be aware that for foreign black borders that can be trickier. For example I have a black bordered french third edition Dragon Whelp, and the card frame and template looks like an english fourth edition, except for the copyright year and the language. So trust the copyright year more than the looks on old cards if they're not in english.

Second, for each set, I go on scryfall and display a list of the cards sorted by price in euro, the more valuable first. This helps seeing immediately if you have one of the more expensive cards. Not all cards have a price displayed, so also go at the bottom of the list to see cards that may be missing a price in euro, but that could still be valuable. You can go directly on cardmarket for a more specific search for those.

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    Thank you for a lot of helpful information! – Daniel Nordh Mar 23 at 7:42
  • You're welcome ;) – liberforce Mar 23 at 9:17

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