NOTE: Once the Kickstarter ends, please go to www.mtgprice.com for further updates!
NEW BACKERS START HERE:
Hi, I'm Alasdair. I run MTGPrice.com: a site that helps people price, collect and trade Magic cards. I've been playing magic since Revised and I've played a LOT of tournament magic, including on the Pro Tour (I did terribly :)
MTGPrice.com has been around for almost three years and more than 200,000 magic players use it every month to track the value of their collections, look up historical prices, see what cards are currently rising or falling or just to compare prices across different vendors (unlike some other sites that use a single source, we pull prices for everyone from eBay and Amazon to ChannelFireball, StrikeZone and ABUGames to many other hobby stores).
For almost the full three years, people have been asking for us to create an iOS and Android app. We've decided that now is the time to build one.
The thing is, we want the app to be really, really good. We don't just want to repackage our website and call it an app - we want the thing to be native and fast and slick and wonderful - all the things a really great app should be. Thus, we've turned to Kickstarter to help us get the cash needed to hire a world-class designer and a developer to help us.
What we're building
We're building an Android and iOS app with the following features:
1. Fast price lookup with autocomplete. Shows our "Fair Trade Price", current price at a bunch of stores, historical price graph. We pull prices from many difference sources, not just a single site.
The premium version of the app will also show buylist prices (the cash price a vendor will pay you).
This is our core use-case: the idea is that you'll be able to pull out your phone and know the price and price history of a card (in any printing) in under five seconds.
2. "My Collection" tool. Track your complete magic collection and its total value. Track the value over time in a graph. See which cards have changed in price recently.
Manage your "wishlist" of cards and receive alerts when we find especially good deals on these cards.
Track multiple collections - perhaps you want to track all the cards you lent a friend, or all the cards in a particular deck.
3. Fair Trade Wizard. Trading with someone at a GP? Just pull out the MTGPrice.com App and you can tally up each side of the trade. The premium version of the app (which you'll receive if you back us) also has an option to show buylist prices of every card in the trade.
We don't stop there. The Fair Trade Wizard will log this trade for you, automatically updating your collection and wishlists. It will also let you review these trades in the future so you can see if you're making good trades over time.
4. Trade Matcher. Want to trade with another app user? Just enter their username (or scan a QR code) and be told all of the things someone wants from you and what you can give them.
The MTGPrice.com app will work out the best possible trade between the two of you, taking into account every single card you have for trade and every card in your wishlist.
The premium version (which all backers receive) will also let you mark specific cards as high or low priority so you can ensure you get those above all others.
5. Trade Locator. Find everyone in the area with the MTGPrice.com App and arrange trades with them!
Imagine being at a GP with four thousand people in the room. You need a foil Snapcaster Mage but can't find anyone with one to trade. Hit the "Trade Locator" button and see everyone with trades nearby. Type in a card and see any users with that specific card for trade.
(Of course, you can disable this feature whenever you don't feel like trading.)
6. Price alerts. We'll give you an alert if a card on your wishlist or in your collection sees a price movement past a particular threshold. We'll also tell you which cards you don't own are currently hot and which are drifting downwards.
7. ProTrader features. MTGPrice.com has a service (currently $4.99/month) that provides a TON of extra features for people with larger collections. For example, you can view historical inventory graphs for specific vendors, get daily alert emails showing trending cards and use advanced tools to find the best deals available form each store. (You can read more about ProTrader here: http://www.mtgprice.com/protraderSignup.jsp)
As part of the app, we'll have additional ProTrader features available for subscribers, including in-app price alerts.
8. NEW FEATURE - Browse a user's collection. You will be able to view a users collection/trades/wishlist (if they have marked it for public viewing). You can also do basic sorting/searching (same filters as for your own collection).
We MAY support a "9 ring binder" view where you can page through a virtual binder of cards (sorted by set and color) for tablets - we're 50/50 on this.
You will have the option to "add to proposed trade" when paging through the users collection as well as the option to toggle prices (and, for Kickstarter backers, Buylist prices as well).
REALLY IMPORTANT: We formerly said that we'd be building iOS AFTER Android. This is NO LONGER THE CASE - iOS and Android will be released on the same day!
Additionally, we have a whole bunch of stretch goals in mind if we can raise above the amount needed for both platforms. Specifically, we'll support international vendors, multiple currencies, different card conditions (only NM-M for now), hundreds of different vendors and faster price updates (currently we update daily). We'll go into more detail if it looks like these stretch goals are reasonable.
Anyway, what are you waiting for? Help us build the most amazing MTG App in the world!
We have 24 hours left and I'd REALLY like to hit the $20,000 mark to support foreign cards. As a result, we're offing the following add-on purchases:
$5 Pledge level and above - Get *personalized* MTGFinance advice on your current collection, future specs or anything else you want to know about. Advice will be given via email and will be detailed and thorough (the length of a typical mtgfinance article on our blog, except 100% customized to you.) Reasonable followup questions are permitted. COST: $50
$75 Pledge level and above - If you have already ordered at the $75 pledge level and above, you can purchase additional playmats at $15 each. (Our cost is $8.50 for the mat, the rest goes to fund the app). COST: $15 per mat.
To order an add-on:
1. Click the “manage your pledge” button on the project’s page.
2. Increase your pledge by the amount needed to claim the add-on(s).
3. Save your pledge. Do not change the tier that you originally pledged at.
Once the Kickstarter ends, we will send out a survey to everyone who paid more than their pledge amount, asking them what they would like to order.
Risks and challenges
While we have a lot of experience building MTG Pricing tools, we don't have a lot of app-building experience. We have a decent understanding on Android app development but almost none when it comes to iOS-specifics which is why we'll be working with a specialist developer for the iOS port.
As with any app, it's always theoretically possible that the app store will reject us. If this happens, we'll find a way to get approved or, at least, will provide a direct download link. This seems extremely unlikely however given the nature of the app.
Also, in case it wasn't clear from above, we will be building this thing so that users of MTGPrice.com and both the Android and iOS versions of the app can all trade together - the platform you use won't matter.
Any questions? Please ask! firstname.lastname@example.org is the best address to reach us.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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