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Magic The Gathering

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Well, recently a lot of people have been suggesting that I get into Magic the Gathering. For those of you who don't know what it is, it's a popular playing card game in which two or more players use creatures, mana, artifacts, etc. to fight each other or a common opponent. I've looked it up and learned the basic mechanics and some common strategies, but it seems like an expensive hobby, and one that could fill my rather little free time.

 

 

What are your thoughts? Do you play Magic? If so, what kind of deck do you use? Should I start getting into it? Any general advice or other comments?

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Well, recently a lot of people have been suggesting that I get into Magic the Gathering. For those of you who don't know what it is, it's a popular playing card game in which two or more players use creatures, mana, artifacts, etc. to fight each other or a common opponent. I've looked it up and learned the basic mechanics and some common strategies, but it seems like an expensive hobby, and one that could fill my rather little free time.

 

 

What are your thoughts? Do you play Magic? If so, what kind of deck do you use? Should I start getting into it? Any general advice or other comments?

It's certainly pricier than many hobbies, but at the same time, it's one that isn't totally expensive to get started in. Compare to geekdom's other big-name game, Dungeons and Dragons. That one costs $25-$40 per book, and the books are set up in a way that you'll almost certainly need at least two if not more. In comparison, a pre-built starter deck of Magic runs about $13-$20 (the higher end usually means some kind of special edition set rather than basic, though) and booster packs of random cards run about $4. (Prices good as of a year ago, that's when my game store went out of business.)

 

As to how much time you allow it to suck up, well, that's up to you. I hardly ever play anymore and when I do, I just borrow one of my husband's decks. He plays usually about once a week for an hour or so now. When we still had the store, he played more often, probably about three times a week for a couple hours at a time, with another hour or so each week dedicated to deck-tweaking.

 

For advice... hmm. See, I started playing Magic back in 1994, before Fallen Empires was out. I mostly stopped playing in late '96 after Mirage was released, pretty much due to my annoyance at a power that a lot of Mirage cards had, which was undefendable except by other cards that had that power. (At least, under the rules of the time. Remember that Magic has evolved over the years.) To be blunt, I got sick of losing to eight year olds with no concept of strategy, but whose parents were regularly buying them full boxes of Mirage boosters.

 

Anyway, so much for the history lesson. Figuring out a strategy is good. Even if you have a preferred play style, building a couple different decks is good, too. Like, one of the best decks I ever built was a red/white all flying deck. (Sort of. Lightning moves through the air, so it counts as flying, right? rolleyes.gif ) Serra Angels, Shivan Dragons, Walls of Swords, Dragon Whelps... it was a sweet deck. Hardly anything could block me. Except for that one guy with the red goblin deck. His Goblin Kings gave all goblins Mountainwalk, which meant I couldn't block anything from him if I had even one Mountain on the table. Since his goblins cost less to bring out than most of my creatures, he'd nibble me to death before I could smack him with one of my bigger and more impressive but slower to get out creatures. I ended up putting together an all-white deck to deal with the goblin deck. My husband tends to like blue/artifact decks that are designed to control everyone else's cards, but he's also got an interesting green/black deck, too.

 

Point being, it's more than possible to put together a killer deck with pretty much all commons, if you work out your strategy well. So no, you don't have to go chasing down every booster deck under the sun looking for that elusive super-powered rare, nor do you have to bankrupt yourself buying a single card for $20 or more because it's rare. If you can, go down to your local game store and sit in on a few games... it's possible that other players will loan you a spare deck if you tell them you're looking to learn the game, and even if they won't, watching the games will give you an idea of what playing is like.

 

 

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Ok, thanks for the info! I've actually decided to try it out, but now I need a deck. I know they sell pre-made ones, but from what I've read, it's much better to build a deck from scratch. The problem is, I don't know how to do that yet... What should I do? Get a pre-made starter deck? A ton of boosters?

 

Also, thanks for the idea—when I can, I'll see if I can sit in on some games. wink.gif

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Go ahead and start with a pre-made deck just to get an idea of how the game plays. The main weakness with the pre-made decks is that as soon as they come out, people who've been playing for a while can build a deck to beat them. However, the advantage is, they will have a good balance of lands to everything else.

 

Once you've played a few games, then go ahead and start buying boosters and tweaking your deck or decks.

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The starter decks often have very weak cards in them, I would recommend getting a duel deck. These decks typically have very good cards and are tournament worthy.

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Another thing worth considering is the deck builder's toolkit. It comes with 125 semi-random cards, four boosters and 100 land. They should go for around 20$ or so.

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I think a lot depends on when and where (and who against) you are going to play. There's a big difference between casual games amongst friends, and more competitive environments.

 

For casual play I would certainly recommend starting with starter decks, judge which ones suit your playing style most (aggressive, defensive, complicated strategies or straightforward creature-bashing, ...), and then expand on that. Buying booster packs is great if you don't have specific deck-goals in mind and build casual decks with whatever you have available, but if you do have an idea of what cards you want, you're better off buying singles in most cases.

 

For really competitive play, I would recommend doing online research on deck archetypes. For Standard tournaments the cards you are allowed 'rotate': it's always the cards that have appeared the last two years or so that can be used (some cards get reprinted an thus stay 'legal', others disappear). Which means the card pool you can build with is relatively small compared to all MTG cards that have appeared ever, and that results in 'archetypes' of different decks that work in the current environment being developed rather quickly every time something changes. The main MTG site is a good place to start with that. They used to have a column called 'Building on a budget' that is very useful for starting competitive players, I don't know if that's still around, though.

 

Do beware of the budget, though. If you want to keep up with the competitive constructed formats, it is going to cost you. You can sell or trade cards that have rotated out, but at that time they'll definitely be worth less than when you bought them (that's when players like me get in to buy great cards that the competitive players can't use anymore smile.gif ).

 

An alternative way to play competitively with a tight control of budget is to find 'Limited' tournaments. That is where you don't start with a pre-built deck, but everyone gets an amount of cards (either by opening a pack/boosters or by drafting) to build their deck with. The plus side is everybody has the same chance of opening a great bunch of card or a less good cardpool, you won't get overwhelmed by people who jut have more money to spend than you. Drafts are also a good way of collecting specific cards for your competitive constructed decks.

 

I've gone through different phases playing magic. We started with a bunch of friends who just bought a booster whenever we had a little money to spare, and built crazy decks (mostly themed) that were ridiculously ineffective but great fun (I remember those days with a particular fondness).

Later the people in our playing group shifted and included a few guys who also played competitive magic, and we had to start investing more time and money into building decks, if we wanted to have a chance of ever winning a game. It is rewarding to see a deck you have built really working as it is intended, but the drawback is that games got more predictable, and in my opinion, slightly less fun.

Then our interests shifted and we didn't want to invest that time and money anymore, though we still like to play the game. We now have gone back to pre-built decks. Everybody at the table uses one of those, keeping the decks pretty balanced.

 

If you have more questions, feel free to PM me, I can't promise I'll be following this thread closely.

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Okay, thanks everyone! I bought a pre-made deck but I don't have anyone to play against. I don't want to go to the comic store, because I've heard through you and others that pre-made decks kinda stink, so I know I'll lose every time. Is there any place anyone knows where a n00b can play and learn the game better?

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Find a friend who allready has a couple of magic decks. Try to play against his different decks and even try to beat him with his own decks. Thats the best way to learn how to play magic.

 

Allthough i don't like to play against constructed decks. Themed decks are always fun, both to play with and against them. But those optimized 40 cards constructed decks are no fun at all, usually they target on one single strategy and just finish the game in a single unstopable combo. Beating your enemy down lifepoint by lifepoint is much more fun.

 

Well, even with themend decks, you can build some very anoying decks tongue.gif Like the great black deads with tons of regenerating and auto-returning creatures in it, the classic red burner decks oder the white / blue tap-decks which can easily render your whole army useless.

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I started with the 2012 Core Set and there are some cards I got that were mythic rare. So I went to Hasturs (the hub of Magic) and got $10 of store credit and with that a friend and I split our money to get a $40 Dark Ascension fat pack with 9 booster packs, a poster, 70 basic land cards and so on. Beforehand, I got my hands on some REALLY old Magic cards from the 90's and to be fair, I think it's a good start for beginners. Their uses were simpler and artwork was less superior to the newer ones but I feel it's more unique.

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I only recently started playing Magic. I have been playing with one of my friend's decks, so I'm not sure how much it would cost to build a good deck... (Although I have seen pretty cheap prices at flea markets and garage sales. The question there is if the cards are actually any good.)

 

My deck that I got from my friend is a white health building deck. It is pretty cool, and it has helped me to learn the basics of the game pretty well. smile.gif

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Glad you've learned the basics. smile.gif You can learn pretty quick unlike how Yu-Gi-Oh is nowadays. The deck I have is blue, white and black but I'm pretty sure it's a beginner's mistake to have a tri-color drck unless if you have a hybrid creature that uses three colors. Also, the cards I find where I'm from come REALLY cheap. There are these grab bags at this table-top gaming store called Hasturs where it's $2 for 30 card pack and $5 for 3 packs. They even have tournaments every friday but there are requirements for the cards in your deck. Still, I'm having a lot of fun playing this game. C:

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I've never played this game, but after looking at some Bogleech articles, I really, really want to play it. Well. Collect the cards anyway. I'm not that big a fan of card games like this. But it was a lot cooler of creatures than I ever would have guessed. =)

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So there's a new set coming out in a couple of weeks. Anyone else looking forward to Dragon's Maze? What guild(s) are you planning to play?

 

I'll be playing Dimir at the midnight prerelease tournament and Orzhov at the noon prerelease on Saturday here.

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I learned to play recently, using cards from the old Ravnica release from 2005 or so. I'm still not very good. I really like it though! I probably won't go into tournaments.

 

As for guilds, for casual I like Simic/Gruul, but I'm also fond of Dimir/Orzhov.

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Tournaments are not always overly serious. Just find a comic shop that has a nice atmosphere and does Magic draft tournaments, and go to Friday Night Magic there.

 

As for this weekend, it's going to be a prerelease, which is the best sort of tournament for a newer player to play at. The cards are all new, and the people there haven't had more than a week to review the set as a whole, so the experience difference makes as little difference as it ever will there.

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I absolutely loved prereleases and releases. Limited was my favorite format because it set everyone on equal playing ground and trying to create a deck out of the choices was so much fun~ Too bad it cost so much. XP Wasn't as big a fan of draft because I usually forgot what I was trying to make or tried changing it halfway through and usually ended up with a pile of mismatched cards (though this one time worked very well for me with a three-colored deck that stomped our little draft group we had that night. I loved Innistrad and Dark Ascension~)

 

Though...I have a lot of issues with the game, and it's going in a direction that I'm not liking. Too many mechanics that are being used heavily or strategies being encouraged that I'm not a fan of, so I stopped playing last summer. I've got a bunch of cards laying around, and still love my decks and the look of the cards, but I've fallen out with Magic. It was a fun three years, but I think my wallet is happy I stopped. X3;

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I remember me and my cousins were obsessed with this game when it came out. Now, honestly, I forgot how to play it. LOL. But I remember my brother bought me the Daniel Zinc deck for my birthday and I always dominated with it. My favorite card: the Wrath of God.

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Alright, so Pontiff of Blight and Aetherling totally wrecked at the prerelease. I like how I got off to some slow starts but still managed to compete well. I'm really liking the new limited environment based on the prerelease.

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Welcome! This is just a sweet little thread to discuss Magic! Talk about favorite cards, least favorite cards, amazing card combos, etc...

 

To start everyone off: What do you all think of the new Theros set?!

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I like playing Magic with a computer program so I don't have to actually buy the cards |D

 

I have a deck centered around what is totally the best card ever, the Evershrike.

 

user posted image

 

(that's a version with modified card art, not the official card even though the text/center art is the same, but still~)

Edited by TheCompleteAnimorph

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Well, recently a lot of people have been suggesting that I get into Magic the Gathering. For those of you who don't know what it is, it's a popular playing card game in which two or more players use creatures, mana, artifacts, etc. to fight each other or a common opponent. I've looked it up and learned the basic mechanics and some common strategies, but it seems like an expensive hobby, and one that could fill my rather little free time.

 

 

What are your thoughts? Do you play Magic? If so, what kind of deck do you use? Should I start getting into it? Any general advice or other comments?

Hi I use a water/air deck normally. It was a Christmas present!

It is pretty cool to play it with like 3-4 players it makes it super fun.

You can go to a good goodwill and get like 2000 cards my deck changes too but as I learned the cards I know how to play well now.

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I enjoy Magic greatly! I went to a convention, and they gave me a free deck to check out. It's really fun! I got the green deck, not sure what its called.. And kept spawning spiders to freak my brother out. xd.png

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oh man this is my thread.

 

 

If any of you wanna see my insane budget troll deck, here it is.

 

Oh lordy Jezzus.

Ouch. That looks like it would hurt blink.gif

 

I've played for about a year now and it couldn't be better. I recently obtained a booster box for the brand new set, Born of the Gods, as I've made a resolution to collect the entire set. Some of the cards in that set are insane.

 

Take Fated Return, for example:

 

user posted image

 

With some serious mana gain cards and a bit of luck, that's an amazing card.

Also Elvish Piper. Not from Born of the Gods, but still.

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