Incredible Find !!! Alpha Volcanic Island FIXED

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pickle.69
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Incredible Find !!! Alpha Volcanic Island FIXED

Post by pickle.69 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:31 pm

I finally decided to remove my gem from its case to scan it for you since so many people asked me about it.

Some alpha rares where included in beta boosters/starters actually.
Alpha does not have a Volcanic island because it was missed on the Sheet.

There where though problems in the Beta printing Process and on a very few sheets, maybe only one, they used alpha blades and print style.

For Xmas I decided to present you the absolut highlight in my collection.

Image

Image

Enrico you own me $50.000 :)
Last edited by pickle.69 on Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:42 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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ende73
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Re: Incredible Find !!! Alpha Volcanic Island

Post by ende73 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:35 pm

pickle.69 wrote: Image

Enrico you own me $50.000 :)

OMG !

OMG !!!!

](*,) ](*,) ](*,) ](*,)

I had always heard you talk about this card but couldn't bring myself to actually believe you.

It's truly gorgeous ! I had heard vague rumors that very few of the "Not in Alpha version but only Beta" cards DID really exist, but this is the first time it's confirmed by someone.

Did you notice that the border is not solid black like Beta Volcanis but shows the double-colored border typical of all Alphas ?

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:24 pm

Hi Richard.
=D>
My Question is,do these cards exist in Alpha ?
Circle of Protection: Black
New piece of art for each of the 5 basic lands Beta.
Want/Have Lists.
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=8903
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=1515
I Love you Dad.R.I.P.

Magik321
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Post by Magik321 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:25 pm

Thats one beautiful card. Nice one.

EDIT: How can we confirm this truely is an alpha card by the way? I checked my alpha and beta cards, the borders looked same to me. :-\

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ende73
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Post by ende73 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:53 pm

Magik321 wrote:Thats one beautiful card. Nice one.

EDIT: How can we confirm this truely is an alpha card by the way? I checked my alpha and beta cards, the borders looked same to me. :-\
The fact is the few Beta cards (normally) missing in Alpha (the ones Alexis mentioned) have a solid black border (try locating a scan of a Beta Volcanic Island on the Internet), whereas this one has the typical double-border (I think it's called belevement).

At this point it's safe to assume that Cop: Black and the basic lands are also in existence. I wonder if Wizards will confirm all this.

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Post by yvel » Thu Dec 20, 2007 2:27 pm

Is that Real Alpha card or just a Beta miscut ?

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ende73
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Post by ende73 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 4:39 pm

yvel wrote:Is that Real Alpha card or just a Beta miscut ?
I would also have voted for Beta miscut if it wasn't for the border issue I pointed out earlier :-k

At this point my best guess is that this card leaked out from an incredibily small test-print run... maybe Wizards realized they had mistakenly left out Volcanic Island (and Cop: Black ?) out of the Alpha set they had designed, which makes sense because I never understoof why the game would be designed with 9 out of 10 possible Dual land combinations and 4 out of 5 possible Circles of Protection.
They probably tried to make good by fixing the print run, but then changed back again and decided to include the missing cards in what became Beta which was to be released soon after...

in this case this card would belong to a sort of Alpha-Beta Edgar edition ! =P~

Any other thoughts ?

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Re: Incredible Find !!! Alpha Volcanic Island

Post by yvel » Thu Dec 20, 2007 4:44 pm

In fact the respond is here :
pickle.69 wrote: Some alpha rares where included in beta boosters/starters actually.
Alpha does not have a Volcanic island because it was missed on the Sheet.

There where though problems in the Beta printing Process and on a very few sheets, they used alpha blades and print style.
Beta Miscut... So not the Missing Alpha.

Good find btw.

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ende73
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Re: Incredible Find !!! Alpha Volcanic Island

Post by ende73 » Thu Dec 20, 2007 4:46 pm

yvel wrote:In fact the respond is here :
pickle.69 wrote: Some alpha rares where included in beta boosters/starters actually.
Alpha does not have a Volcanic island because it was missed on the Sheet.

There where though problems in the Beta printing Process and on a very few sheets, they used alpha blades and print style.
Beta Miscut... So not the Missing Alpha.

Good find btw.
Ah, right :-k

pickle, is that the story you have from the source you acquired the card from ?

If that's the case then we should also look for an Alpha Tropical Island with the correct artist name ! ](*,) #-o

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Post by fvzappa » Fri Dec 21, 2007 8:01 am

ende73 wrote:
yvel wrote:Is that Real Alpha card or just a Beta miscut ?
I would also have voted for Beta miscut if it wasn't for the border issue I pointed out earlier :-k

At this point my best guess is that this card leaked out from an incredibily small test-print run... maybe Wizards realized they had mistakenly left out Volcanic Island (and Cop: Black ?) out of the Alpha set they had designed, which makes sense because I never understoof why the game would be designed with 9 out of 10 possible Dual land combinations and 4 out of 5 possible Circles of Protection.
They probably tried to make good by fixing the print run, but then changed back again and decided to include the missing cards in what became Beta which was to be released soon after...

in this case this card would belong to a sort of Alpha-Beta Edgar edition ! =P~

Any other thoughts ?
COP: Black was playtested, I own 3 copies of the pre-alpha playtest card, which includes their initial run of playtest, to the final stages of playtesting. So I assume that there was every intention of it being included. I heard something about the artist not meeting a deadline... not sure if that is true or not.

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Post by Tenacious_Dyl » Tue Dec 25, 2007 8:37 am

I guess I'm confused. I found a decent scan of a Beta Volcanic here:

Image

It seems to be identical to the scans posted by pickle.69 except the corner's cut of course. The whole "two color black border" thing is the same, as are the small white triangles between borders, and every other detail on the cards (that I can tell) seem to be identical.

Not to say that pickle.69's isn't really "Alpha", but how can / do you differentiate? I'm afraid I'm a bit lost...

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Post by EddieO » Tue Dec 25, 2007 8:59 am

That seller is selling fake cards......there is a a bunch of posts on other forums about this seller.....his cards all appear to be fake, not to mention the front scan wear marks don't match the back of the scan wear marks.....they are simply piss poor fakes.....and of course, a bunch of suckers will end up buying them....


Later EddieO

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ende73
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Post by ende73 » Tue Dec 25, 2007 4:16 pm

Tenacious_Dyl wrote:I guess I'm confused. I found a decent scan of a Beta Volcanic here:



It seems to be identical to the scans posted by pickle.69 except the corner's cut of course. The whole "two color black border" thing is the same, as are the small white triangles between borders, and every other detail on the cards (that I can tell) seem to be identical.

Not to say that pickle.69's isn't really "Alpha", but how can / do you differentiate? I'm afraid I'm a bit lost...
Yes, that scan is of a fake card.

If you look at other Beta Volcanics posted around on auction sites, you'll notice what I mentioned about the solid black border.

Merry X-Mas !
(don't take me as a PC and MTG freak, I'm posting today simply because I'm sitting at home with a terrible fever ](*,) )

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Post by Tenacious_Dyl » Wed Dec 26, 2007 6:42 pm

Of course the scan I find is from a scammer / faker. D'oh! :'-(

I did find a few of my old COP:Black (Beta) that match this though, interesting fact about the double-borders I didn't know... very cool card you have there pickle.69!!

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Re:

Post by cataclysm80 » Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:04 am

Magik321 wrote: How can we confirm this truely is an alpha card by the way? :-\

I get asked this question a Lot.
Since this thread seems to be the source that causes the questions, I think it will be easier for everyone if I just answer here for everyone to see.

pickle.69 wrote: Alpha does not have a Volcanic island because it was missed on the Sheet.
fvzappa wrote: COP: Black was playtested, I own 3 copies of the pre-alpha playtest card, which includes their initial run of playtest, to the final stages of playtesting. So I assume that there was every intention of it being included. I heard something about the artist not meeting a deadline... not sure if that is true or not.
I've spoken with Wizards of the Coast employees who were there when this happened, including the art director Jesper Myrfors, and the Magic Production Manager Dave Howell. Everyone agrees.
When Alpha was made, the artwork for Volcanic Island and the artwork for COP:Black hadn't arrived in time, so Alpha was sent to print Without those cards. (The slots on the sheet were filled with extra basic lands.)
Alpha versions of these cards can not exist because their artwork did not yet exist, and they weren't on the sheet.

The Volcanic Island artwork did arrive in time for the Beta print run. The art still hadn't arrived for COP:Black, so the art director (Jesper) created something on the computer. (COP:Black is the first computer generated art in Magic). It was also decided to add a third artwork version for each basic land.
These 7 "new" Beta cards, being created after all of the other cards, do not have the little white spots in each corner of the black card border.

ende73 wrote: At this point my best guess is that this card leaked out from an incredibily small test-print run...
That guess is wrong. Dave Howell has said that there were no test prints done for Alpha, Beta, or Unlimited. As Magic Production Manager, he would know. Jesper Myrfors agreed with him, and added that Wizards didn't have the money to pay for test prints in those early days. "All of the money that WotC had went into Alpha. Beta was printed when we began to get some of the cash in from Alpha sales."

Notes:
Alpha was sent to be printed in May of 1993 with a $40,000 deposit towards a $120,000 total bill. That was all the money Wizards could scrape together, with the rest of the bill being paid for after product was sold. Carta Mundi's willingness to go along with this payment plan was helpful towards selecting them to do the printing.
Alpha printing proofs (for final approval before cranking up the printing press to full speed, Not the same as test prints) were used by Peter Adkison to demonstrate the game at Origins game fair in July 1993. They're identical to regular Alpha cards.
Beta was sent to be printed in August of 1993.
Test prints weren't made until sometime after Revised was released.

pickle.69 wrote: There where though problems in the Beta printing Process and on a very few sheets, maybe only one, they used alpha blades and print style.
In addition to the Volcanic Island, COP: Black, and new art of each basic Land which were added to Beta, there are also some cards from Alpha which needed corrections and were fixed for Beta. viewtopic.php?f=5&t=9803&hilit=Alpha+Volcanic
Wizards only burned film (color separations for making printing plates) for the new Beta cards and the ones that needed corrected from the Alpha printing. Carta Mundi then blanked out those cards on the previously used Alpha films and made new printing plates with the blank spots. Then they used a step and repeat process with their camera to put the Beta cards in the correct spot to finish making the Beta printing plates. That's why the changed cards could look different or be missing the little white spots in the corners, while all the other cards remained identical to Alpha.
Once these Beta printing plates were made, they were used for the Beta print run. This single set of plates easily did the whole Beta print run.

It's not possible for "very few sheets, maybe only one" to have been printed in the Alpha style. To have a different printing style would require a different set of printing plates. Not just a single different plate, but a different plate for each color (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black).
The claim that Carta Mundi would go to all of that work making new plates to print only one sheet is borderline ridiculous.
Even if Carta Mundi had wanted to do that, it would not have been possible to make those plates because Wizards says they did not supply Alpha style Volcanic Island films to make plates from.
As we've already discussed, No Beta test prints were made.

Regarding the die used on the Beta cards for corner rounding, EVERYTHING that I have found indicates that all cards printed during the Beta print run were cut using the same die. (Beta corners are different from Alpha.) More on this topic in a moment.

pickle.69 wrote:Some alpha rares where included in beta boosters/starters actually.
yvel wrote:Is that Real Alpha card or just a Beta miscut ?
After packaging all of the Alpha sealed product, Carta Mundi had numerous Alpha rares leftover. They had printed to many. Alpha sold out very quickly, and Carta Mundi still had these Alpha rares when Wizards ordered the Beta print run. Carta Mundi asked Wizards if it would be OK to use up these Alpha rares by putting them into the Beta sealed product. Wizards said Yes. No need to waste the cards, use them up, and maybe save some money by not having to print as many Beta rares. Keep in mind that Alpha and Beta are Not different sets, they are two print runs of the same set. We weren't supposed to be able to tell them apart, and the Beta corners were supposed to be the same as Alpha. Starter decks were made first, so those Alpha rares were put into Beta starter decks.

Carta Mundi made a mistake when they used a different corner rounding die for Beta.
Normally, Carta Mundi made regular playing cards, and the corner rounding die wasn't critical because the whole deck would be the same. (2 decks per full sheet of cards) With Magic however, your deck could be assembled from different print runs, so consistent corner rounding was very important. Trading Card Games were a new thing, and Carta Mundi did not realize the error. Wizards did notice the error after they received the Beta cards, and was very concerned, calling Carta Mundi to see what had went wrong. Carta Mundi made up an excuse about the tool being sharpened in between print runs, and promised that it wouldn't happen again. Future cards would have corners just like Beta.
Wizards shared the Carta Mundi corner rounding story with anyone who asked. The production manager later found out that this was just an excuse and there really were different corner rounding dies.

Note: The Alpha corner die was accidentally used on a small number of Revised & Ice Age cards (no rares), and on a larger number of 4th edition (again no rares). The print runs of these sets were much more complex than Beta, being about 100 times larger than the Beta print run, and each consisted of multiple print runs, Ice Age & 4th having multiple sheet layouts and multiple sets of printing plates. Alpha cut Revised & Ice Age are Extremely hard to find. Alpha cut 4th can be found if you look around a bit.

The corner rounding die does not cut one card at a time, or even one sheet at a time. It is more or less a rigid tube that has approximately 1000 cards at a time, shoved through it with a hydraulic ram to clip the corners on the whole stack.
Note: The corner rounding method changed around the same time that the Carta Mundi USA printing facility opened (during 1996).

The supposed "Alpha Volcanic Island" has worn corners, but they do resemble Alpha cut corners. The print differences between this card and a Beta Volcanic Island are quite noticeable though. The card really does not look like a Beta Volcanic Island. It is not simply a Beta Volcanic that is miscut.


Now for some examples so that we can make some comparisons...

This image clearly shows the black border of a typical Alpha or Beta card having two different shades of color. (This is a Beta Demonic Tutor.) The inner portion is mostly black, but also contains dots of blue, red, and yellow. This is called rich black and was on the Alpha and Beta films that WotC sent to Carta Mundi.
The outer portion of the black border is plain black. That was not on the film from WotC, and was added by Carta Mundi to fill the blank white space between the cards on the film. This was done with black tape on the film before making the printing plates.
Most cards show a white “dot” (actually more of a little triangle) in the corners between the two black borders.
The little white triangle exists because the rich black borders WotC provided had rounded corners, and the tape that Carta Mundi used to fill the space between the cards could only be applied in straight lines.
Image
Notice that the inner border (rich black) is a lighter shade than the outer border (plain black). This was not intentional.
For Alpha, WotC did their own color separations but did not adjust for dot gain. Dot gain is how much each ink dot grows when it's on the card stock. You might think of it like ink bleed. It's possible to get to much color on the card stock, and that makes the card appear very dark. I think that for the most part, dot gain adjustments are made before burning the color separations to film, but dot gain can also be affected by things like ink level, ink viscosity which can change with temperature, and print speed. Carta Mundi saw that the color separation films had not been adjusted for dot gain, and performed an automated adjustment when making the printing plates. This was better than nothing but less than ideal.
That automated adjustment lightened up the cards a little, which is why the inner black border (rich black) appears to be lighter. It would have been darker and matched the outer border better without the adjustment, but then the whole card image would have also been darker and difficult to read.
Wizards didn't like the accidental two tone borders. Future expansions avoided the two tone borders by having Carta Mundi apply the entire black border with their tape.


For Beta, when Carta Mundi added the new and corrected cards onto the printing plate, they forgot to make the automated dot gain adjustment. This is why those cards appear darker than their Alpha versions, and the two tone black border on these cards is very closely matched. Some people say that these cards don't have the two toned border, but if you look closely, you can see that they Do have it, and that the inner border is actually a little darker than the outer border.
Here's some examples...
Beta Channel
Image

Beta Red Elemental Blast
Image

Circle of Protection: Red
Image

Circle of Protection: Black
Image

Volcanic Island
Image


Tenacious_Dyl wrote:I guess I'm confused. I found a decent scan of a Beta Volcanic here:
"link to expired eBay auction"
It seems to be identical to the scans posted by pickle.69 except the corner's cut of course. The whole "two color black border" thing is the same, as are the small white triangles between borders, and every other detail on the cards (that I can tell) seem to be identical.
EddieO wrote: That seller is selling fake cards......there is a a bunch of posts on other forums about this seller.....his cards all appear to be fake, not to mention the front scan wear marks don't match the back of the scan wear marks.....they are simply piss poor fakes.....and of course, a bunch of suckers will end up buying them....
ende73 wrote: Yes, that scan is of a fake card.
If you look at other Beta Volcanics posted around on auction sites, you'll notice what I mentioned about the solid black border.
Tenacious_Dyl wrote:Of course the scan I find is from a scammer / faker. D'oh! :'-(
Many Fake Beta Volcanic Islands were sold on eBay during 2007 when this topic originally came up. Those fakes had the white dots in the corners.

Jim Bruso wrote: All the beta volcanic island I have ever ever open from boxes never had white spots . All the 23 years I been in the business, no white spots. There were a ton of fakes in 2007 of them.

This next picture is of a fake Volcanic Island that a major collector found in his collection.
He had it for 7 years before he realized that it was fake.
Image
another pic of the same fake card
Image
Beta and Unlimited Volcanic Islands both have a small amount of space between the card border and the blue line around the cards perimeter.
On this card, the black border on the left side adjoins the blue line with no space between them. It is clear then that this card has been altered.
Further inspection revealed that this card was a real Unlimited edition card with carefully inked borders.
Also notice that the inner border is lighter colored than the outer border.
Whoever made this clearly modeled it after one of the non-corrected Beta cards. They probably didn't have a real Beta Volcanic to look at and didn't know any better.
Also notice that the lighter inner border is not "rich black" with the various colored dots, which it would be if it were real.
If the corners were clipped on this card, it would strongly resemble pickle.69's "Alpha Volcanic Island".


You can see that sometimes you need to look very closely to spot a fake.
pickle.69 enjoys having a mythical Alpha Volcanic Island, so I don't expect him to provide any close up pics that would prove the card isn't what he says.

Here's what we know though. It can't possibly be an Alpha Volcanic Island, and it doesn't look like a Beta Volcanic Island either.
The fact that it has Alpha corners while not being an Alpha card tells us that someone has intentionally modified this card to appear like something that it isn't.
The card must either be an inked Unlimited card as shown above, or a complete fake.

pickle.69 is a big Magic collector, and I'd like to think that he could spot a complete fake if he had one, so the card is probably a carefully inked Unlimited card, and maybe he just hasn't realized it yet. It took another major collector 7 years to realize he had a fake, so that's quite possible, especially if the card is stored somewhere safe and not looked at frequently.

Tav
Last edited by cataclysm80 on Tue Aug 23, 2016 9:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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