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Local retailer had $300,000 worth of Magic: The Gathering cards stolen at Gen Con

The stolen goods are largely Commander Masters and Collector Booster sets

Hands move several different Magic: The Gathering cards across a table Photo: Mark Abramson/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Nicole Carpenter is a senior reporter specializing in investigative features about labor issues in the game industry, as well as the business and culture of games.

Thieves took off with “upwards of $300,000” worth of Magic: The Gathering cards days before the start of major tabletop convention Gen Con, according to Indianapolis police. Two unidentified men walked off the Indiana Convention Center floor in Indianapolis, where Gen Con was held, with a pallet full of boxes. Pastimes Comics & Games manager Zack Reiter told Polygon the cards were Magic: The Gathering cards.

Pastimes Comics & Games is both a retailer and a tabletop tournament organizer. Despite the theft, the company hosted events throughout the convention, which took place from Aug. 3 to Aug. 6. The cards were stolen before Gen Con began, when exhibitors were setting up for the event. Police, in a Facebook post asking for help identifying the duo, said the two men “acquired a pallet jack” before taking a pallet full of plastic-wrapped boxes. The alleged thieves walked off with the cards, which have not been located.

The pallet was piled high with pricy Magic: The Gathering Commander Masters and Collector Booster sets, Pastimes Comics & Games wrote on Facebook. The duo appear to have stolen more than a dozen boxes of these sets, which they seem to have removed from the plastic wrap at some point during the heist. “Detectives are still seeking help in identifying both individuals,” police said. Police said on Facebook and later reiterated to Polygon that the theft occurred on Aug. 2, but Reiter told Polygon via email the theft took place Aug. 1.

Police declined to comment further on the alleged Magic: The Gathering card heist.

Shortly after news of the stolen cards went public, Gen Con attendees and onlookers began to speculate that the cards stolen were the highly sought after Disney Lorcana cards. The game doesn’t launch until Aug. 18, but Disney and game publisher Ravensburger hosted a special pre-sale on Aug. 3 — an event that drew long lines that some said were unsafe for attendees. However, Ravensburger quickly confirmed that all its cards were accounted for.

Update (Aug. 9): This story has been updated to include new details from a Pastimes Comics & Games representative.

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