Q: Three dollars for an expansion pack? A dollar for singles? You must really be making a killing, with a markup like that!

A: Packs are a great deal when you look at the price of the single promo cards, which are, yes, $1 apiece. This is mostly because they are printed in vastly smaller quantities than a full deck of cards, or even a cello-wrapped pack, so our price doesn’t go as low per card as it does on packs. Also, picking and packing single promo cards is the most laborious type of order, so unless people are buying bulk packs of 25 of the same card, the price doesn’t go cheaper than that on singletons – not even for retailers.

So packs, obviously, are a better deal than singletons. Taking a brief survey of expansion/promo packs at this time, they seem to range from four cards up to seven or eight per pack. It looks like our pricing has been a bit inconsistent through the years, ranging from $2 to $5. Licensed assets, like the Castle Expansion, usually cost more, but that has varied as well.

Incidentally, we don’t make expansion packs just so we can make a few bucks with a massive profit margin — at least not on sales of the expansion itself. Mostly we print them in conjunction with the initial release as marketing materials that we can use to promote sales of the main game when it first comes out (usually by giving them away – marketing materials are an expense, not an income stream).

So yes, we hope they help us make more money, of course, but the idea is that they are boosting sales of the main product. If they’re really popular, we’ll find a way to keep them in print when they run out, but that can really depend. Subsequent print runs for consumer sale are always much smaller, such that our margin decreases significantly, so keeping them in print for fans is something we do primarily because we like to keep our fans happy, not because they’re a major source of income for us.