With decades of existence under its belt, Magic: the Gathering is a game that has enjoyed a solid player base for an exceedingly long time.
Many other games tend to fall into and out of fashion rapidly. Magic, however, has proven to be reasonably popular throughout its lifespan.
Because it’s been around for long, it has a ton of booster boxes to choose from. If your search is for one that you’ll get the most value out of, we’ll help you find it.
In this guide, we’ll be discussing what we believe are some of the best MTG booster boxes for the money.
We’ll cover these topics:
- What kind of qualities to consider for your value
- Our selections for the best booster boxes for your money
- The pros and cons of choosing each box
- Our overall recommendation
Let’s take a look.
Features to Consider
The potential resale value of individual cards in your booster box is honestly only one facet of its worth.
Value means something different to just about everyone. Some may mean which booster box may be the most fun for drafting, others may mean which one has the most interesting theme.
Because worth varies from person to person, we’re defining the best for your money through the following considerations:
- Possible formats
- Potential returns
The overall themes that inspire each set and its subsequent booster box differ widely.
For instance, the highly popular Innistrad used horror-based themes and included grisly tribes like vampires, werewolves, and zombies.
Other sets have focused on Greek or Egyptian mythology. Themes can add an interesting flavor to any deck or collection and are perfectly valid to consider.
Beyond flavor, there are mechanical themes introduced by different boxes, too. An illustration of this would be the vehicles used throughout Kaladesh.
If there’s a particular inspiration or mechanic you enjoy playing with the most, be sure to examine those as you look for a booster box.
Some sets have cards that are great for use in particular formats, such as Commander/EDH or drafting.
Think about your favorite format before you choose a box. If there’s a format that’s your favorite, you may as well choose a box that contributes most to that format.
Interested in learning about some of the best booster boxes for drafting specifically? Take a look at our list here.
Of course, when you think of something that’s best for your money, probably one of the first things that you think of is price.
Whether you’re on a budget or you just don’t want to spend a lot on your box, cost is something else to factor in. A rule of thumb with booster boxes is that they get more expensive the older they are.
So then those searching for the least expensive boxes should usually look into the most recent sets.
Another consideration is the potential value of individual cards.
Boxes with cards on the reserved list, for instance, are likely to continue to rise in cost. The reserved list includes a list of cards that will not be reprinted for the purpose of ensuring their long-term value.
If you’d like to take a look at the up-to-date reserved list, you can check it out here.
Additionally, boxes with especially powerful cards tend to also hold their value fairly well. However, if some of these cards are banned from a format – such as Commander – they will almost certainly plummet in price.
Generally speaking, older boxes, although valuable, don’t offer the best returns. That’s because you need to pay at least several hundred dollars just to purchase them, and unless you open the box and pull a lot of the best cards from the set, you’re not likely to make that money back.
Best MTG Booster Boxes for the Money
Core Set 2020
If you’re a beginner or you’re looking to introduce new friends to the world of MTG, core sets like the one for 2020 are a solid choice. They generally represent the latest block as a whole, demonstrating new mechanics and themes.
- Highly affordable
- Great as an introduction to Magic
- Good for drafting
- May see a lot of basic or low-power cards
Masters sets take much-loved staples and powerful favorites and combine them into one reprinted set. Master 25 was an outstanding example of this, and was printed to celebrate Magic’s 25-year anniversary in 2018.
If what you want is a box that will give you consistently good pulls, this is a wise selection.
- There’s a chance of some really valuable cards, like Jace, the Mind Sculptor
- The cards you pull will overall be higher in power than with many other boxes
- Like other Masters sets, this one tends to run a bit more expensive
Innistrad was an immensely popular set partially because of the gothic tone it had. You can get that same flavor of horror in Eldritch Moon at a more modest price – and with a good chance of getting some powerful planeswalkers.
- Popular horror-based theme
- Fairly affordable
- Unique mechanics like meld and double-sided cards
- Contains some weaker tribes, like werewolves
- Not as many high-value cards as some other boxes
Return to Ravnica
With Return to Ravnica, you’re getting five guilds so you’ll have plenty of two-color support. Furthermore, it’s an incredibly inexpensive booster box with some valuable shock lands in it.
- Potential to pull expensive shock lands that are a staple in many decks
- Good for drafting
- Not a whole lot of mono-color cards to choose from
- Overall power level of the box is lower than others
Khans of Tarkir
Building three-color decks can take a lot of tinkering, and Khans of Tarkir brought a lot of cards supporting these kinds of decks. It also comes with a variety of strong legendary creatures and expensive fetch lands.
- Tri-color wedge theme that helps build decks with three colors
- Lots of legendary creatures to choose from for those interested in Commander
- Could potentially pull a pricey fetch land
- Can be a bit more costly initially
We think that all of the boxes on this list have potential. But if you want a box where you’ll get consistently the most powerful cards, as well as those that can be used in a variety of decks, consider Masters 25.
This box will contain cards that are staples in most formats, cards that are absolute powerhouses, and generally more valuable cards.