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DispatchMetaGameplay

by The Regional Nation of The Northern Light. . 350 reads.

The Monthly Snapshot - Issue 1


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||| Overview ||| | ||| Why Should I Read This? |||
·


Overview

The Monthly Snapshot is a regular publishing of information in regards to happenings within the NationStates Cards. It details overall market use (by players), the most notable cards, the most recognizable traders, card events, and more!


Why Should I Read This?

As to why it is advisable to read the Snapshot, it is due to the fact that NationStates Cards is a growing and expanding feature. It was supposed to have only been an April Fools event in 2018, but it was later kept due to a massive effort by players to keep the feature. Therefore, administrators and players have been tirelessly working to make cards more interesting, and the Monthly Snapshot serves to highlight ongoing things players might've skimmed past (due to the relatively new addition of cards as a whole).


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What's Been Going On?

Currently, NationStates has been adding constant changes/additions to cards. These include several user-created tools (most importantly the 1) Comprehensive Guide, 2) Card Queries Page, and 3) Card Market Watch), new regional programs (see The North Pacific Cards Guild and Link10000 Islands for examples), new technical features, and more. Judging by these constant new additions, it is evident that NationStates Cards is rapidly cemented itself as yet another subcommunity in NationStates.

However, despite cards current strong presence within the larger NationStates community, there are hopes for even greater heights! This is due to several key factors:


~ 1. The Vast Majority of Major Regions Now Take Interest in Cards - The already-listed regions (i.e. ones based from The North Pacific and 10000 Islands, are two notable examples, but they are not the only regions that possess cards programs. The West Pacific, The Pacific, The East Pacific, and The Rejected Realms are known to have dabbled into cards in their own manner, ranging from holding contests (and offering cards as a prize) to publishing their own informational dispatches!

Here's just a few examples of some major regions work in cards:

~ The East Pacific:

Conclave Seal Contest


Introduction

Hello! We are the Judicial branch of the East Pacific, also known as the Conclave. Nice to meet you! In-case you don't know, here's who we are before we continue:

Viceroy
(Like the Head of the United States Supreme Court)
Zukchiva

Arbiters
(Like the Justices of the US Supreme Court)
Asendavia
Pakitsk
Wallenburg

Coincidentally, we are the ones hosting this competition! It's very nice to meet y'all; make sure to say hello to us if you see us! We are relatable and are not just some dusty ancient men sitting on a high tower. I promise. ;D


The Contest

The aim of this competition is to create a new seal for the Conclave.

The seal currently in official use (the one on the top of this dispatch), was created around and used since 2014 by Aleita Astor, a former Viceroy and beloved citizen of the East Pacific, based upon the designs of Juris (another former Viceroy) and East Malaysia.

It's a seal that's been used for more than half a decade, and for good reason. It projects the virtues of justice, duty, power, and discipline: values that we as Arbiters try to embody everyday. However, with the start of a new decade (woohoo!), and the failure of the Fedele coup, us Arbiters, in our dusty and sorry offices with coffee stains, thought it would be a good idea to get a new seal (and probably new offices as well). And what better way to produce a new design than a community contest? So that's what we did. :]


Proceedures

Please follow the listed procedures below carefully. Failing to do so may result in your entry not being considered for voting and you not receiving the participation prize.


Proceedures
1. Create your design. (Remember to save frequently!)

2. Upload your image to an image uploading site. Imgur is a very great site and simple to use.

3. Telegram Zukchiva the link to the image with a TEP resident nation (explained below).

4. Wait for the results to be posted!

Note: Seals will be ranked based on our (the Conclave's) linking of them. Other nations may also be asked to judge.

Note: The contest will run for a period of three weeks, from January 16th, 2020 EST to February 6, 2020 EST.

Note: The seal chosen for first place may not be adopted by the Conclave. Whether the seal is chosen to become official will be decided by the Arbiters.


In addition to these procedures, certain requirements must be met for your design to be considered, as listed below.


Requirements

Be a TEP resident.
With the heavy symbolism and ties of this symbol to this region we call home, we as a group decided it would be best for only TEP residents to participate in this contest.

Make the image background transparent.
This will make the seal look better on multiple site backgrounds.

Limit the size of the image.
Please don't make it too big. The image needs to be a proper fitting size of decent quality.
LinkSome examples Linkof how the seals are used. LinkClick these green words to see them!

Send your design through telegrams only.
Seriously. Entries need to be organized and nation names need to be recorded, so it's easier for us to use telegrams than sites like Discord because of the ability of telegrams to be sorted into folders. Send your designs (after following Steps 1-3) to Zukchiva.

No NSFW, Nazi, fascist, or discriminatory elements/symbols/images.
These types of images go against the administrative policy of the East Pacific and will not be tolerated.


Suggestions


Don't limit yourself to TEP imagery or colors.
Our region has beautiful symbols, like the mason compass. However, other design tropes may work as well. The current seal, for instance, doesn't have any symbols nor colors relating it to TEP, yet it's been our official seal for so long.

Make something that would look good on TEP forums.
Check out the requirements section above (scroll up), and click the three green links to see how the seal is often used above blocks of text.

Trouble with finding the right colors?
LinkCheck out this site. It gives you the ability to generate random color palettes of five colors, and you can also lock down colors so that the program finds colors related to the specific colors you locked down. (Check it out to see what I mean!)

Avoid bright colors.
When you think of justice or law, you think dull colors. While colors certainly don't have to be dull, don't make them neon pink either.


Rewards

Of course, any cool contest will have rewards. Rewards for this contest will be in the form of NationStates cards. All cards will come only from those found within Zukchiva's deck.


Rewards

First Place
- Will receive a legendary card (make pick from one of two legendaries available.)
- If seal is chosen, will be credited with seal design on TEP forums.

Second Place
- Will receive an epic card. (May pick from 18 available cards.)

Third Place
- Will receive an epic card. (May pick from 17 available cards after second place picked their card.)

All Participants
- Will receive an ultra-rare card. (Will be able to choose in order on who submitted design first.)


Afterward

And that's it. If you have any questions, you can ask Zukchiva! We hope you decide to make a design!


Disclaimer


BY SUBMITTING A DESIGN, YOU AGREE TO ALLOWING THE CONCLAVE TO USE IT IN ANY OFFICIAL CAPACITY OF THEIR CHOICE IF YOUR DESIGN IS CHOOSEN.
Read dispatch


~ The West Pacific:



Written by Reçueçn

Trading Card Glossary


Glossary of terms: This guide is aimed at those who are interested in getting involved in the NS trading card game but are maybe a bit intimidated by the learning curve or don't know all the jargon involved. Some definitions may seem pretty obvious, but hopefully are helpful to a newcomer. Not included (with two exceptions) are any nicknames for various card players or cards, of which there are far too many to decide who to include. It can be very useful to know who someone's puppets are as well, but this is often easy to figure out by looking at who a nation gifts cards to or receives transfers from. So without further ado, some definitions:

0-owner: A card with no copies in circulation. This is usually a card whose owner has CTE'd. (That makes it more rare to find the card; in fact, it used to be you couldn't find these cards anymore at all, but it was changed in January 2020 by [violet] here.)

1%er: One of the top-ranked players in the card trading game. (Usually used either in a resentful or ironic way.) However, because so many nations are puppets or belong to users who don't play, most players find themselves in the top one percent. You could divide the number by 100 then to be more accurate: the rich elite to whom the term refers in fact make up only the top 0.01% of all nations.

Dead-inside: A card whose nation has CTE'd. Note that you can't tell this by looking at the card: you have to go to the nation's page itself. It is *not* the same thing as a card with an ex-nation flag. Dead-inside cards are important because they can only rarely be found in packs, unless they happen to be at auction at the time you open the pack, in which case there is a boosted (but still small) chance of finding them.

Dropping: Dropping is a strategy used to make a quick profit without gaining or losing any cards; the profit comes from another user overpaying for a card. It works like this: you notice that a card you own is at auction, and either due to a low original ask or a high bid (perhaps you help out here by starting a bidding war on the card), there is a noticeable difference in price between the current highest bid and the ask with which it is paired. The person who has the current highest bid on the card thinks they're getting a good deal, since they will only be charged the average of their bid and the ask--they're not paying the full price of their bid. At this point you drop them by placing a bid of your own at the same price as the ask and simultaneously selling your card for the same price this person has bid. You sell a copy and buy a copy of the same card, so there is no change there, but you make a profit of the difference between the price at which you sold the card to your victim and the lower price at which you have bought it.

DV: Deck value. This is how much all your cards together are worth, according to the in-game market value computations. This is how users are ranked for the cards badge. It does not include the value of any bank you may have.

Ex-flag/Ex-nation: An ex-nation card is a card from Season One whose flag is the "ex-nation" flag of a CTE'd nation. Note that because of the way Season One cards were printed, the nation may or may not actually be CTE'd. It may have returned since its card was printed. (Conversely, a nation whose card is *not* an ex-flag card may have CTE'd, and it will not be reflected on the card.)

Farms: NationStates puppets especially for farming cards: used to answer issues and gain additional packs of cards.

Heist: To heist is to steal bank from another user's transfer (see below). The term can also be used as a noun. By selling a card another user is buying for a high price, you can effectively steal bank from them.

JV: Junk value. This is how much bank is earned by junking a card, and is the same price it costs to gift the card.

KK or Koem: Koem Kab, the user behind the nation of the same name, which is far and away the richest and most successful nation in the card trading game. (So much so that he has been given a Security Council condemnation out of jealousy.)

Leg: A card with 'legendary' value. Plural: legs. Can also be referred to as legends.

Match: To accept someone's bid or ask on a card by offering or requesting to sell the card for the same price. Or, in a more complicated auction, it can refer to different bids or asks pairing with each other as the situation changes.

MC: Mindless Contempt. For a long time the most valuable card in the game, a Season One legendary card whose owner has ceased to exist, meaning until [violet] changed the way cards for CTE'd nations work, it could no longer be found in packs (with the exception of a pull event: see below).

MV: Market value. This is an in-game calculation to help estimate the value of a card, and is the rolling average of the last 10 trades of a card (not including sales from a nation to itself). However, there have been bugs in the system which may not all currently be fixed as of the end of 2019.

Overbidding: Offering to pay more than the current highest bid on a card.

Pennybidding: To bid only a cent (.01 bank... or so) over the current bid in an auction. Pennybidding is considered rude by 1%ers who resent wasting time on an auction (each bid adds a minute to auction length). The author of this glossary is of the opinion that anyone who complains about pennybidders is spoiled and that it is a perfectly valid strategy.

Piggybacking or Sneaky Transfer: Using an existing auction to transfer bank by selling another copy of the same card for a very high price just at the last minute of the auction. This cuts down on heists by avoiding having such a high bid outstanding for an entire hour.

Processing: Going through packs of cards to determine what to do with them, whether junk, sell, gift, add to a collection, et cetera. This may or may not include actually opening the packs.

Pull: To find a card in a pack.

Pull event: Because cards have a chance of being pulled when at auction, even if the nation behind them has CTE'd, players will sometimes purposely sell cards back and forth and farm in the meantime to try to find the card.

Pup: A puppet nation (in this context, one used for farming). Also called farms or sometimes puppies.

S1: Season One, or a card from Season One.

S2: Season Two, or a card from Season Two.

Snapshot: There have been two snapshots, one for each season. This is the moment at which the details and appearance of a card are determined. During the original April Fools cards event, cards were dynamic, meaning their appearance changed with their nation. When cards came back and S1 began, there was a snapshot which updated and finalized the appearance of season one cards. (This is why there are ex-flag cards: some cards exist for nations that no longer existed during the snapshot.) S2 began with a snapshot which finalized cards' rarities, but then there was a period where players were allowed to update various aspects of the appearance of their cards.

Sneaky Transfer: See Piggybacking.

Sniping: Sniping is sneaking in on an auction at the last moment. Usually this refers to heisting, where the goal is to steal bank from a transfer (see below) but it can also be used in the opposite direction to refer to overbidding at the last moment to try to win an auction.

TCALS: Trading Card Anti-Laundering Service, a term coined by Testlandia to refer to the mechanic behind Pull Events (see above). TCALS sometimes inserts a card that is currently at auction into packs from newly answered issues. (More bids on the card in the auction are correlated with more cards being 'printed' by TCALS.) TCALS was intended to make it more difficult to perform a Transfer (see below), but was used by players to create more copies of valuable cards and has been very controversial. There has been much discussion about the way TCALS works, resulting in the admins implementing a change to the mechanic in July 2020.

Transfer: Almost always a Bank Transfer (Card Transfers are usually unnecessary since you can gift cards to yourself). A transfer is a sale to oneself via a puppet in an effort to get more bank on your main account. By selling a card for a high price no one else is willing to pay, you can ensure that your puppet wins the auction and the bank spent winds up on your main account. The danger, however, is that someone else has the same card, sees the transfer, and sells the card for just slightly less to make off with your bank (a heist, see above). Cards being transferred have an additional chance to be pulled during the auction.

Transfer card: A card specifically used for safe transfers of bank. This is usually a card that has few owners, or may have CTE'd. Perhaps it is simply a card of which you own a high number of copies. The market value of the card is likely not reflective of its true value, since by transferring it repeatedly for more than it is worth the market value calculations become inflated. Cards at auction have an additional chance of being pulled so another user may find the card you are using and try to heist you (see above).

Transfer Fee: the price paid to gift a card to another nation. The same as a card's Junk Value.

True CTE: This is a card whose nation has CTE'd (a dead-inside card, see above), of whom it is safe to assume that they are not coming back. A card whose nation CTE'd yesterday is not a true CTE since they may log in again in the future. In theory there's no way to know when a card is a true CTE, but by looking at how long a nation has been CTE'd and comparing that to how long it existed one can make an educated guess. True CTE's are valuable cards because they can only rarely be pulled except during a pull event (see above).

Turn and Burn: This move is similar to dropping (see above) but it is a bit more difficult to pull off and you don't need to own the card to do it. Like dropping, it involves working up the price of a card in a bidding war, once you've won the card, you turn around and sell it right away again before your opponent removes their higher-than-usual bid. Again you can make profit here because there is a difference between bid price and the actual price paid when an auction is resolved. Since you pay the average between your bid and the original (lower) ask, you can then ask the same amount as the similarly high bid of your opponent to make a profit.

UC: A card with an Uncommon rarity.

Underask: To ask less than someone else for a card, usually one at auction. This is the main mechanic used when sniping or heisting (see above). If someone has asked a price for a card that is more than it is worth--for example, in a transfer--by asking just less than them you can take the bank that has been bid on the card.

UR: A card with an Ultra-Rare rarity.

Thanks for reading! You've made it to the end of this guide. If you have any answered questions, please check out the card channel on Linkour discord server, and we will make an effort to update this guide if deemed ncessary.

Hopefully now you're fluent in cardspeak, and you know that if you 'pull someone's leg' you're not playing a trick on them. Happy farming!

Layout by Bran Astor & Fujai


181
LinkLink
TWP


Read dispatch


~ The Pacific:

SECRET SANTA

Secret Santa! Much like the types of Secret Santas that you see in schools or workplace, it involves you having to present a gift to a randomly selected person. However, spending on a gift here is not necessary. Your gift can come in the form of a short poem, a story, a honest compliment, an image you have drawn for them or even an e-card that you can easily acquire from the internet. The essence is ... it's not the gift but the thought that counts. Just make sure to deliver your gift before Christmas!

SIGN UP THROUGH LinkHERE
SIGN UPS STARTS 1 DEC // ENDS 07 DEC

WINTER FLAG CONTEST

As the name suggests, the theme of the flag contest this time around is well ... WINTER! Any resolutions and dimensions are accepted and your submission should NOT include gore, violence, sexual or explicit content, content that expresses negativity towards the Pacific or any other organizations or regions, hate speech and non-PG13 elements. Afterwards, a winner will be selected by the Culture Committee and will be awarded a prize from the Pacific and lands a feature in the World Factbook Entry.

SUBMIT YOUR FLAG IMAGE LINKS TO Japanese Schoolgirls OR COMMUNITY#7177 ON DISCORD
SIGN UPS STARTS 1 DEC // ENDS 14 DEC

ROCK PAPER SCISSORS TOURNAMENT

The Rock-Paper-Scissors Tournament is a new concept that the region will be trying out. A literal pure game of chance will test your luck against other people’s and the luckiest contestant will come out on top. The mechanics of the game is simple; you will have to register your nation in the Google Form below and you will be contacted via telegram to choose one of three options - rock, paper or scissors. The same will be done to your opponent and once both of you have locked in your answers, the matchup will conclude in a victory for one. If the matchup ends up a draw, the players are contacted to choose an option once more and will repeat until it ends in a victory for either of the two players. It is an elimination bracket tournament so the matchups will continue until the winner of the final matchup arises from the tourney!

SIGN UP THROUGH LinkHERE
SIGN UPS STARTS 1 DEC // ENDS 07 DEC

ADVENT CALENDAR

The Pacific is also having its own advent calendar! Much like last year, we're going to try our hand at trying to add a little something something to the last twelve days before Christmas by dropping a video link in our Advent Calendar dispatch every day. It's a surprise so the only way to find out what the video contains is to simply click on it and enjoy.

ADVENT CALENDAR DISPATCH HERE
CALENDAR STARTS 12 DEC

TRIVIA TIME

The Pacific will also be trying out the RMB Trivia Time for the first time ever. A trivia question will be posted in the RMB during major and minor update (12 AM and PM Eastern respectively) and whoever gets the answer first gets a point. Points will be tallied at the end of the celebration and whoever has the most points also win a prize from the Pacific! Better get your winter knowledge ready for the theme of the questions will obviously be winter. There will be some mixed bag questions thrown in just to spice things up! Looking forward to see you, pursuers of trivia!

TRIVIA TIME STARTS 2 DEC MAJOR UPDATE

CARD RAFFLE

Literally being a Pacifican nets you the opportunity to be blessed by legendary cards! Stand a chance to win an East Durthang, Jar Wattinree or Shnailand card! The prerequisites are simple - just have a World Assembly status and make sure you’re endorsing East Durthang to be part of the selections for the card raffle.

Read dispatch


~ The Rejected Realms:

Explanation

When answering issues, you may have seen a little button that says "Open Pack". This will give you 5 cards, which have rarities and represent different nations. And occasionally, you'll get a card of the legendary rarity, the highest rarity.

Every Friday, we will randomly pick two nations to give a legendary card.

These two nations will be a World Assembly nations in the Rejected Realms having endorsed delegate Dead I Jack.

The nations will be telegrammed to pick a legendary card owned by The Rejected Card Keeper, and if they respond, they will be given the card. Cards are first come first serve.

How to Become Elligable for the Giveaway

How to become eligible:

  1. Join the World Assembly by clicking here and pressing "Apply to join".

  2. Endorse Dead I Jack by clicking here, and pressing the button that says "Endorse Dead I Jack".


Read dispatch


At this rate, it becomes clearer and clearer that, despite NationStates Cards being a fledgling addition to the site, tremendous growth has already been shown due to the efforts by some of (even) the largest regional communities (the original being The North Pacific) to enhance the experience.

~ 2. Long-time Features of the Game are Integrating Cards Into the System - These long-time features deal with two extremely old additions of NationStates: 1) the World Assembly and 2) issue/World Census badges (in addition to cards being used for region building).

For the former, this implementation of NationStates Cards into the World Assembly was initially started by Bormiar, who was the author of Security Council Resolution #287 - Condemn Koem Kab, breaking new ground as to how Security Council resolutions may be used to call to attention the influence of well-known traders and how their influence has been used to affect (whether positively or negatively) nations all throughout the international community (further resolutions are currently being drafted to acknowledge the work of other card traders). As for the latter, due to inspiration regarding Bormiar's referring to cards as "artwork", a World Census badge was added on December 12, 2019, with this badge being titled "International Artwork" and solely being achievable through increasing one's deck value!

~ 3. Off-site Areas of NationStates Now Frequently Discuss Cards (and its Future) - This includes regional forums and Discord servers. For example, The North Pacific has its own Linksubforum that relates to cards, and many regions maintain channels specifically to discuss cards on their Discord (The North Pacific, The West Pacific, The East Pacific, and 10000 Islands).

Additionally, NationStates also possesses an (unofficial) Discord server that solely deals with card trading, and has some of the biggest card traders and even Testlandia themselves.


How is Season 2 Changing Cards Up?

Overall, you might've noticed that the appearances of all cards look Linkslightly different than what you might've seen Linkoriginally. This is due to the fact that Season 1 has long ended, and with Season 1 ending, the cards from that season are no longer frequently pulled (from players' packs). Instead, traders are now expected to draw Season 2 cards from packs, thereby affecting the market by causing players to, as a result of the scarcity of Season 1 cards, more-frequently buy/sell Season 2 cards on the market.

It is still possible to draw packs that contain Season 1 cards. Infrequently, players may see themselves 1) pull packs that solely contain cards of previous seasons or 2) specifically previous seasons' cards if those cards are currently being auctioned. This lower, but existing chance to pull Season 1 cards has (therefore) enabled continuous trades of those season's cards, which provides the trading community a much-needed assurance that they'll acquire cards they might've missed out on for their collections.

[Also, with deck value also being an Linkupcoming factor into nations' card rarities, a spike within Season 2 card trading (along with a continuation of Season 1 trading) is to be expected due to the desire for everyone acquire the much coveted legendary card status.]


If All Cards are Pullable, How Does This Affect the Market?

As mentioned above, cards of previous seasons are pullable (including ones of ceased-to-exist/CTE nations). This sole fact has affected the market in that 1) players continue to maintain standing bids on cards from previous seasons (a good example being made here) and 2) certain cards (of previous seasons) are frequently auctioned by traders in an attempt for multiple nations to draw them from packs.

The former is as such due to traders' hopes that someone will pull their desired card and sell it to them in the future, while the latter is being done out of respect for the increased chance to pull cards when they're being auctioned (see below for further details regarding this).


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General Trends

Link

Link

Thanks to Racoda for making the GIF!


Any Noticeable Shifts?

Overall, trading activity has been steadily increasing as a result of the introduction of Season 2 of NationStates Cards. This shift is first noticeable from 11/30/2019 and onwards, with particularly noticeable jumps being made due to the efforts by mass-buyers such as 9003.

In terms of auction activity, the average number of auctions seems to be numbered at 2500, with several outlying peaks being shown out of respect for the immense purchasing of Season 2 common cards by many traders (Linkparticularly the one mentioned above).

As for gifting activity, though lower than auction activity, the average number seems to have also increased. Based on the first graph, its current mean seems to center around 1000 daily gifts, a definite increase in comparison to the average 800 that Season 1 was bringing. As to why this increase is as such, there seems to be no traders that particularly cause the increases/jumps shown on the graph, and that the overall trend shift has been positively affected due to an overall increase in cards (whether it be due to the introduction of Season 2, new regional card programs, and more!).

Finally, as for the overall trend shifts regarding each season, it is shown (and hinted earlier) that the overall trading activity for Season 1 cards has decreased as of 11/30/2019. Currently, the total number of Season 1 trades usually sticks to around 400, and this is due to the fact that Season 1 cards are now (in respect to Season 2 cards being released) much rarer to draw from packs. With this new-found rarity in perspective, it is to be expected that the daily trade activity of Season 1 cards has fallen short (though still existent, since you can still pull them from packs) in comparison to the increasing trend of Season 2 trades (which currently sits at 2000-4000 at any given moment).


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General Trends

Link

Thanks to Racoda for making the GIF!


Any Trend Shifts?

Notably, nearly every single trend in rarity trades has increased, with the one exception being the trend for legendary cards. This change has first been noticeable from 11/29/2019 (i.e. during the preview of Season 2 cards), and most rarities have seen an estimated increase in trading (per day) on an average of 200, a noticeable difference in comparison to the significantly lower trades during Season 1.

Seeing that these trend increases are closely correlated with the start of Season 2, one has to wonder as to whether trades across all rarities will become even higher once Season 3 (hypothetically) releases!


Overall Trend Differences?

Between all these trends, it is clear that legendary cards rank the lowest in trades (relative to all other trends within the graph above). This may be the case for either of these 3 reasons: 1) overall lack of legendary cards due to the rare chance to draw them from packs, 2) lack of sales within the legendary market due to the high expense of purchasing these cards, or 3) dominance within the legendary market by a select few traders. Overall, the first two reasons are self-explanatory, due to legendary cards, in order to be classified as "legendary", needing to be rare and higher-priced. However, for the third reason, this is proven by the existence of several users, most notably the ones whom possess the highest deck values within the entire traderbase. With this in mind, newer traders may be required to work harder than usual in order to involve themselves within the legendary market, therefore being an additional/potential factor into the overall low trend regarding trades within this rarity.

As for epic trades, the chief reason as to why trading activity (despite epics being the second rarest/most expensive card type in the game) is currently stable is due to near-constant purchases by several dedicated collectors. This primarily centers around the collections of Frisbeeteria, Guard Captain, and Wopruthien, and each trader possesses collections that near in the thousands! With the works of these three (along with other traders) in mind, we expect the epic market to remain consistent for a long period of time.

Overall, the ultra-rare market has seen a slightly lower trend than epics (perhaps a mere -50 in average market activity). However, ultra-rare cards, due to being relatively cheap and (still) valuable, are likely to maintain a steady market activity for months on end (even already, the potential benefits within the ultra-rare market have been capitalized by several mass collectors, particularly Karen Matheson and An Actual Hurricane!).

Rare cards are (arguably) the third most traded rarity as of now (overtaking epics by an average +50 trades). This is due to these cards being much cheaper than the other cards mentioned above, therefore enabling many players to purchase them en masse! The leading trader for this seems to be Mara Jade-Skywalker, though we expect that many others to also play a role into this card type's popularity.

For uncommons and commons, both (naturally) are dominating the market by far. Uncommon activity within the market averages to a daily 500 (overtaking rare cards by 200-300 trades), while commons, on a typical day, weight in around 2500 trades! As for the huge spike of trades, it is due to the (overall) cheapness and widespread presence of these card types, allowing newer players to quickly acquire one of these cards. Also, due to the commonality of these rarities, many traders (primarily 9003, Giovanniland, and Destructive Government Economic System) have taken massive steps in order acquire as much of these cards as humanly possible!


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Card Description - Soops

Soops is the name of a card that happens to be one of the rarest Season 1 legendary card, along with being the most valuable card in the entire game (at least for now). It was first publicly sold on 4/2/2018, and its traits (including being ceased-to-exist for over 2 years) have made this card, despite being the card of an unknown user, one of the most notable items of value on the market!

Number of Owners: 30

Total Number of Trades (Including Gifts): 98

Number of Collections Soops is Featured in: 12

Junk Value: 1.00 Bank

Market Value: 1228.00 Bank

Highest Sale of Card: 8/12/2019 for 3000.06 Bank

Most Recent Sale of Card: 4/27/2020 for 825.62 Bank

Most Recent Gift of Card: 4/28/2020 byCard Farmer 1293


Why is this Card So Popular?

The absolute reason as to why Soops is such an influential card is due to the fact that very few traders are able to collect all Season 1 legendary cards due to the aforementioned card's rarity. Soops has been an ex-nation legendary since the introduction of cards in 2018, therefore severely limiting as to who may draw this card from packs.

As a result of this card's rarity, many influential collectors (including Koem Kab and The Northern Light) have been purchasing this item for hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of bank, inadvertently increasing the card's worth to the point where very few cards even come close to matching Soops's market value.

Overall, due to the extremely limited quantity of Soops cards, this item has (very likely) been the sole reason as to why the Season 1 legendary market requires such a large bank investment, and the possession of even one of these cards has been attributed to symbols of high status within the NationStates Cards traderbase!

This has changed with the most recent pull event where a further 35 copies of the card were found! Many new owners of the card now exist. As such, the question on many traders minds is whether this card will lose its place soon as the most valuable card.


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||| Trader Profile ||| | ||| Interview |||
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Trader Profile - Koem Kab

Koem Kab is the name of an anonymous user who currently possesses (by an extreme margin) the largest deck value within the NationStates Cards leaderboard. Their #1 ranking in deck value has been the case since the beginning of Season 1 (though Farrakhan would Linkbriefly surpass them for a few days), and their notoriety within the cards playerbase has garnered them enough infamy to become the first condemned trader by the World Assembly Security Council.

Their deck value primarily stems from their near-monopolization of legendary cards, and this nigh-omnipresence within the legendary market comes from their immense bank stashes on (both) their primary nation and their satellite state: Greatest Chernobyl. Furthermore, Koem Kab and Greatest Chernobyl manage thousands of puppet states (including the Super Bowl, Oslasa, Molies, and Epiaris nations), drawing cards from said puppet states in order to 1) junk for slowly-cumulative amounts of bank (which would then be transferred to their main account), 2) heist nations' bank transfers, or 3) sell the cards from those nations to their main nation.

[Examples of all being shown here: Link(1) Link(2) Link(3)]

In addition to their legendary market dominance, Koem Kab has been repeatedly known to instigate massive inflation schemes for (typically) worthless cards (see the following as an example). These schemes involve the selling/transferring of a card Koem Kab already owns to their satellite state (Greatest Chernobyl) at an enormously high price. This results in Koem Kab, due to selling those cards for a high price, acquiring an interestingly high market value for that card and gaining the bank from their satellite state at the sale's conclusion.

Overall, Koem Kab, despite being an extremely secretive user, has made an overwhelmingly noticeable impact within the community, and traders from all over NationStates now associate the terms "rich" and "omnipresent" (the latter due to them seemingly being online at all times) with their name.


Interview

Due to efforts by The North Pacific Cards Guild, NationStates had a once-in-a-lifetime chance to interview Koem Kab! Here's what the user had to offer:

1. What has gotten you so interested in cards?

Koem Kab: I found collecting cards very fun, and it gave me something to do for hours.

2. Do you view card farming (i.e. creating multiple puppets to generate cards) as part of the game or an unfair advantage?

Koem Kab: It is part of the game. It's like any other game where if you spend more time and effort into a game, you get more rewards as a result.

3. What advice would you give to nations that are considering entering the cards game and/or nations that are just starting to build their decks?

Koem Kab: I would advise them to create at least 25 nations for card farming. When you are doing a bank transfer, use a card you have multiple copies of which will allow you to minimize your losses on anyone trying to heist. Also don't sell a legendary for whatever the highest bid on it is unless it is close enough to Market Value.

4. What are your views on penny bidding and/or dropping and/or heisting?

Koem Kab: Penny bidding is fine when it is the first bid you are making, but when it becomes a bidding war, it isn't since it just wastes time. Dropping and heisting adds an interesting aspect to the game. Dropping provides a risk to people trying to get a cheap card, and and heisting provides a risk to a bank transfer.

5. What do you think about your condemnation?

Koem Kab: I am proud of the condemnation. I definitely agree that I deserved it. The resolution itself did a good job on giving the reasons why it was deserved.

6. When did you start collecting cards en-masse? Like, did you start as soon as the first April Fool with a goal in mind, or did you start collecting a lot at the start of S1, i.e. the cards making a comeback after April Fools?

Koem Kab: I started collecting from the very beginning. The goal I had in mind was to collected nations I found interesting, and nations with high NS stats. Then I collecting goals changed and instead focused on collecting as many legendary cards that I can.

7. How many puppet nations do you run?

Koem Kab: I have over 1000 puppets for card farming. The number of puppets I farm in a day depends on how much I am willing to do. Although not all 1000 in 1 day.

8. Have you noticed any big differences between Season 1 and Season 2?

Koem Kab: The biggest difference between the 2 seasons is the card design. Another difference is that during Season 1, CTE cards couldn't be pulled but during Season 2, although not at the beginning, they can be pulled but at 10% of the rate of a non CTE card.

9. Are there any other card players you appreciate?

Koem Kab: Mikeswill is a player I appreciate since he is a friendly player. I notice he sometimes doesn't outbid me when I place a bid when he normally would even if the card is selling for cheap. I do the same back to him sometimes.

10. What is your favorite card and why?

Koem Kab: My favorite card is Season 1 Frisbeeteria mainly because of the GIF which looks great on the card. In addition, it is a highly valuable card and a legendary.

[All questions were asked by Praeceps, current Guildmaster of The North Pacific Cards Guild.]


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What is the TMCCC?

The "TMCCC" is the shortened term that stands for The Monthly Card Collection Competition. It was first started by The North Pacific Cards Guild on LinkDecember 14, 2019 by order of the first Guildmaster Praeceps.

As to what the TMCCC does, it is (essentially) a contest between all traders within the cards community to see whose collection fits the month's theme (whatever theme it may be) the most! The month's theme (which is decided by Guild leadership) can be anything, ranging from cards that relate to comedy or collections that solely deal with the topic of love.

At the end of each month, two winners are decided (one by regular Guild members, and the other by Guild leadership), and each winner is awarded a legendary card for fitting that month's theme the best! With that in mind, it is highly encouraged to participate in the TMCCC, since you may find yourself a much-needed asset (should you win) in the form of highly valuable cards!


December 2019 Theme

On December 14, 2019, the very first TMCCC was held, with the theme for the competition being anything related to winter. All submissions were then brought to the North Pacific Cards Guild for Linkvote.

On January 5, 2020, Koskalherria's collection won (receiving 6 out of 13 total votes), with the collector being awarded a Season 1 Crazy Girl card.


January 2020 Theme

The second TMCCC to ever be held was initiated on January 2020, with the theme being lights and fireworks, with the most-voted collection being Aerilia's entry (receiving 4 out of 10 Linkvotes) on February 4, 2020 and the user being gifted a Season 2 Xoriet for winning.


February 2020 Theme

The third-ever TMCCC was, due to being hosted on February 2020, naturally going to be love and affection. Notably, due to wanting the ability to reward different types of collections for the competition, the Guild decided to (permanently) introduce two winners to the competition! Guild members will vote on the best collection for the first winner (i.e. the Member's Choice), and leadership decides the other winning collection (a.k.a. the Master's Choice). With this new introduction, onlookers can expect for 2 legendaries to be gifted during every TMCCC, and those who manage to win both the Member's and Master's choice shall be gifted both legendary cards to their deck!

That being said, the first dual-award vote began on LinkMarch 2, 2020, with the winner of the Member's Choice being The Lovebirds's Linkcollection and the winner of the Master's Choice being Kyskalherria's collection.

Each winner was later gifted their own legendary cards, with The Lovebirds being sent a Season 2 Tzo and Kyskalherria being sent a Season 1 Mousebumples


March 2020 Theme

For March 2020, the theme was chosen to be mathematics. This month marked the date in which a collector truly is capable of receiving awards from both competitions!

Rice Insun's collection had managed blow every other entry out of the water, therefore allowing the user to win both competitions! On LinkApril 3, 2020, the Member's Choice vote began, with Rice Insun's collection receiving the majority of the votes (i.e. 9 out of 12), while the Guild leadership also agreed of the collection being amazing to the point of deserving the Master's Choice award.

As such, Rice Insun had received 2 legendary cards (1 per competition), with the two being a Season 2 The Macabees and Season 2 Noahs Second Country. Many congratulations are sent to them for being the first to accomplish this feat!


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What are Pull Events?

Pull events are auctions in which traders deliberately sell rare/valuable card(s) that they own to themselves (or other players, should they be trusted enough) in an attempt to have other nations pull those cards (from packs) during the auction's duration. Pull events usually have a set time and date as to when they occur (along with prior notice given before they actually start) in order to give the chance for players to prepare (whether by saving up card packs or doing other tasks that allow them to participate in the event), and these events typically yield a greater chance to pull rare nations' cards than when opening packs on a normal day (a.k.a. during a time when that card is not being auctioned).

The North Pacific hosts these pull events each month, with the card to be auctioned (and pulled) being chosen by a nomination + vote from players within and outside of The North Pacific Cards Guild. At times, should The Northern Light possess enough bank, multiple cards may even be selected for the monthly pull event!

Seeing that The North Pacific regularly hosts these pull events, we've decided to regularly update the card playerbase on what went down during these exciting times, including 1) what cards were chosen (by the Guild) to be pulled, 2) who contributed to the ability to even auction the chosen card(s) for the event, and 3) who were the ones lucky enough to pull those cards. See below for each month's pull event!


December 2019 Pull Event

On November 29, 2019, the very first Linkpull event vote was held within The North Pacific's card guild, with former TNP delegate + historical resolution author NASTIC 2 being chosen by everyone. The card was then put up for auction on December 1, 2019 at 9 P.M. EST by The Northern Light and Destructive Government Economic System, leading to several pulls by players (including Feu de Glace, The Tampa Bay Rays, The Northern Light, and Koem Kab on card farming puppets).

In addition to NASTIC 2, due to the pull event occurring right before the start of Season 2 (i.e. December 3, 2019), multiple other pull events were started (at around the same time/date) to add on to the festivity. These included Tupelope (auction conducted by The Northern Light and Destructive Government Economic System), Mindless contempt (conducted by Drexlore and Frisbeeteria), Anime Daisuki (conducted by Luna Amore and Ballotonia), and Sentimental Journey (conducted by ROM), with many players (including Zazumo, Arumdaum, and Gorundu) managing to pull copies of these cards.


January 2020 Pull Event

On January 16, the Linkfirst vote of 2020 was held for said month's pull event. The same card (i.e. NASTIC 2) was chosen by the guild. NASTIC 2 would see its re-auctioning on January 26, 2020 on 9 P.M. EST (thanks to The Northern Light and Destructive Government Economic System), with Renaissancistic People (auctioned by Destructive Government Economic System) also being added as a bonus. The latter card was found by Dracacre, while NASTIC 2 was pulled by several nations (i.e. Leto II Atreides via the Spice Harvester nations and The Northern Light via Card Farmer 511, the latter gifting the card to Bormiar as per a Linkcard giveaway request).

Leto II Atreides would later attempt to re-sell both of their copies of NASTIC 2 using puppet a nation of theirs (i.e. Alia Atreides), enabling many additional traders (i.e. 9003, The Mongo Empire, Camnicopia, and Jamas Ragi) to pull the card (in packs) several hours later. Also, one of Leto's copies of NASTIC 2 would be outbid by Xoriet, enabling her to also gain the card (though at the cost of 325 bank).

Overall, despite there being much fewer auctioned cards in comparison to December 2019's pull event, January 2020's event would see a much greater success rate with the card initially voted on (a.k.a. NASTIC 2).


February 2020 Pull Event

On February 20, the Linksecond vote of 2020 was held for the month's pull event. Season 2 Nervun was ultimately chosen to be auctioned (and pulled), but Season 1 HMS Unicorn was later added due to a surplus amount of 1000 bank on The Northern Light.

Both cards would see themselves being auctioned February 23, 2020 at 3 P.M. EST (due to being sold to The Northern Light by The North Pacific Card Collections), with Racoda (via RSCA Privateer 11) managing to pull a copy of Season 2 NERVUN and Feu de Glace (via Embassy to Novoroyssia) pulling a copy of Season 1 HMS Unicorn. Both are extremely rare and well sought after items, so big congratulations are sent to both of these users for their luck!


March 2020 Pull Event

On March 19, the Linkthird vote of 2020 was hosted for the month's pull event. Season 1 Pergamon was firstly chosen to be pulled, with Season 2 Old Tyrannia later being thrown in due to an extra 1000 bank on The Northern Light. [Note: Season 1 Pergamon was known to have been the most expensive epic card in history, so it required the aid of Bormiar gifting it to make the card's pull event possible.]

These cards were auctioned on March 29 at 3 P.M. EST (both being sold to The Northern Light from The North Pacific Card Collections), and this pull event was known to be the most successful of its kind in months. Both auctions lasted for an estimated 7 hours, therefore enabling the following users to pull copies of each card:

Additionally, this pull event had enabled several additional users to gain (via Linkpurchase) copies of Season 2 Old Tyrannia (most notably Mikeswill, Ter Voland, and Noahs Second Country) hence why this particular pull event has become extremely known within the cards community (both an enormous amount of pulls for both cards and an additional owner gain through trading)!

Have an interesting idea for an article about Cards you want to share with the world? YOU can write for the Snapshot. Reach out to Praeceps or Destructive Government Economic System

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