Pack Crackin': Portal

Magic Untapped cracks open some Portal booster packs from 1997.

In 1997, Wizards of the Coast introduced to Magic: The Gathering a new set designed specifically for beginners.  That set is known as Portal and, while at the time the set was scoffed at by the majority of enfranchised players, time has shown it to be a rather sought-after set.  It's also a rather difficult set to find these days thanks to its low print run and relative unpopularity when it was in print.

A 215-card set, Portal features no instants, enchantments, or artifacts (though it did have sorceries that could be played at specific times such as during combat).  Portal booster packs contain one rare, three uncommon, nine common, and two basic land cards.

Despite its beginner level focus, Portal actually contains some surprising powerful and valuable cards.  Topping the list (at time of filming) was Sylvan Tutor, though in recent days the free turn card Last Chance has catapulted itself into the number one spot.  Other strong and highly sought-after cards include two more tutors (Cruel Tutor and Personal TutorWinds of Change, and Natural Order -- all of which are worth between $30 and $80 each.  

There are also a wide variety of valuable cards worth between $5 and $20 such as Devastation and Wrath of God, with a couple of them (such as Cloud Pirates and Nature's Lore) being commons.

Magic Untapped spent about $40.00 ($19.99 per pack) on a pair of booster packs of Portal.

Watch the video below to see how fortunate (or unfortunate) our pulls were.  Spoiler alert: The pulls are amazing.

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Barry White

Barry White is a longtime Magic: The Gathering player, having started in 1994 shortly before the release of 'Fallen Empires.' After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno, he went on to a 15-year journalism career as a writer, reporter, and videographer for three different ABC affiliate newsrooms.