I have always been about physical objects. I still listen to CD's in a download era. I still buy DVD's in a Redbox/download era. I still pay by bills by mail in an email era and I still buy cards from a store. Why? Because I can physically see what I paid for. I don't have to give it back. I won't lose it due to a glitch. I know my bills will arrive safely.
I guess you can call me old fashion, but I don't get the appeal of having pictures of cards. If I wanted just pictures, I could just as easily go to Panini's blog and grab this....
Boom! I even got this for free! HUGE HIT!!
Paying to get nothing seems pointless and doesn't appeal to me. I have seen other collectors pay $80 for a digital card that they will never touch and it makes me shutter. I have heard other pay even more. Big shutter. Those types of numbers could land you something pretty significant you can actually hold.
But, I guess, big guess, I can see the appeal for some. Opening digital packs to chase your favorite teams/players might be fun. Trying to land the rare cards before your friends. For me, I would rather open up a physical pack and do those same things. Pulling a digital autographed card or rare card is as appealing to me as that picture of the Mariota above. It's just a picture that holds no value.
I am not saying there isn't a place in the hobby for digital cards. There obviously is and it helps keep the card companies going which is a good thing. I guess I am mainly saying it definitely isn't for me.
Other than not being able to physically touch the cards, here are a few other concerns that I have about them.
- They hurt LCS'. You can't buy digital cards from them and if you are spending all of your hobby funds on digital, we will continue to see the LCS' disappear. Would probably hurt card shows as well.
- I am hoping it is being used as a bridge to collecting for kids but not the whole idea of collecting. If the future of collecting all goes digital because we teach kids this way, the hobby could disappear.
- Bonding with kids and other collectors. There was nothing more memorable for me than sitting down with my father and sorting cards and getting together with friends and trading. You can't do that on your mobile device correctly. That's like having Christmas dinner and texting the person across from you asking them to pass the mashed potatoes. Where is the human interaction most of us seek?!
- Instead of buying packs of digital cards, buy packs of real cards to find codes to unlock digital cards. Make these digital cards run at 1:4 or 1:6 packs. Don't let us know who it is, what kind of pull it is or how rare it is. Part of the fun will be the unveiling!
- Once the digital card is unlocked, give the person a choice of claiming the card as a physical card or letting them risk it in a fantasy type game.
- If the person decides to gamble their card and they lose, they don't get the card or a prize. If they win,well that's up to the company what happens from there.
I don't think digital cards are horrible overall if they are used the right way. If they are used strictly to make money and are not here to help the hobby expand, than that means they are not being used the right way.
These are just my thoughts. You can leave yours below but if you disagree, please don't be on the attack. Make your points valid and without threats. It's great to have a discussion, not great to turn it into a war. We are all in this hobby together.