Secret Lair: Raining Cats and Dogs Hits $1k on Secondary Market

Josh Nelson • January 24, 2024

Editor's Note: Since publishing, the secondary market price of Secret Lair: Raining Cats and Dogs has dropped dramatically.

Earlier this month, Wizards of the Coast announced their plans to shift their print-run model for Secret Lair drops from on-demand to limited-print. These plans officially began with the drop of Secret Lair: Raining Cats and Dogs, a preconstructed Cat/Dog kindred deck. Over the days ahead of January 22nd, Wizards revealed that cards like Jetmir, Nexus of Revels and Anointed Procession, both popular cards, would be featured in the deck. Unsurprisingly, the primary commander for this deck would turn out to be Rin and Seri, Inseparable, another fairly expensive card that appeals to cat and dog lovers alike. When the deck dropped on January 22nd, merely twenty days later, it was an instant success. Even at a price point of $150, the deck sold out in only six hours!

This is likely seen as a big success for Wizards because the drop sold out so quickly. Unfortunately for many who wanted to acquire the deck, six hours was too short for the pet lovers. So, what went wrong here?

A Secret (Lair) Too Well-Kept

For one, the social media team running socials for Secret Lair did not announce the start time for the drop. Even though an email went out, many consumers complained that the window between the email going out and the drop launching was too short.

Furthermore, Wizards of the Coast instilled a cap on how many drops a person could order. With previous drops capped as high as 60 per customer, Secret Lair: Raining Cats and Dogs had a cap of only five. However, vigilant Twitter users found that even that didn't hold entirely true:

Despite the announced cap, however, sales for the Secret Lair still met the upper limits. Moreover, scalpers seem to have snatched up a good number of these decks in what little time consumers had to purchase them. On TCGPlayer, people looking to buy the decks on the secondary market were met with steep markups. At the time of writing, TCGPlayer has three sellers selling one drop apiece at $400, and one seller selling five at $1,000 per deck.

Regarding eBay, And Bots in the Queue

Meanwhile, eBay is also participating in marked-up sales, with the drop selling as low as nearly $280 at its lowest. This is still $130 more than Wizards sold the deck for directly. The highest current Buy It Now price for the deck is $599.99, plus shipping. This is certainly better than the $1,000 asked for on TCGPlayer. However, this is a listing asking four times as much as Wizards charged.

Auctions for the deck on eBay are not much better, with the lowest price for an auction being $245 at the time of writing. Fortunately, at this time, the margins between the lowest auction price and the highest are slim. The highest price right now is $250 plus shipping.

Even while waiting in the store queue, many complained that bots would likely buy it out before that hour elapsed. While the verdict is out on whether bots did take up queue space, for many, the deck sold out quickly.

This example seems like an immediate result of cause and effect. If there is any consolation to come of this, it may be that Wizards of the Coast is aware of how well their Secret Lair drops sell now, if not already. Wizards of the Coast is a company largely reliant on market data to drive future products. Therefore, ideally, they may take this as a sign to better prepare their drops for the future.

On January 8th, we reached out to Wizards of the Coast. We posed questions regarding print run calculations, fail-safes in case of selling out, and the decision process. They have not gotten back to us as of yet. However, we will report further if new developments occur.

Josh Nelson wears many hats. They are a music journalist when not writing gaming news. Beyond this, they're a scholar of the Sweeney Todd urban legend, a fan of monster-taming RPGs, and a filthy Aristocrats player. Josh has been playing Magic since 2001 and attributes their tenure to nostalgia, effort, and "aesthetic".