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[Magic: the Gathering] Turbo Frog Still Not A Deck

GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
edited November 2013 in Critical Failures
Magic: The Gathering

magic_the_gathering.gif

Origins of the Game (credit: @Shadowen)
This game was invented in 1994 by Dr. Richard Garfield, a hilariously fat cat with an honorary degree in tormenting mice. His understanding of nature’s unforgiving savagery lent him unique insights he fashioned into the initial design of the game. Like many cats, though, he soon grew bored and wandered off to do other things. Since then, the game has come under the direction of the MaRo, a hideous beast that delights in torturing people after they give him money, and its erstwhile "owners", Sorcerers by the Sea. However, their perch is precarious.

At the age of eighteen the game is now legal, but in the intervening time it has become a self-aware monster, its tentacles spreading to all corners of the globe, and now rather than the other way around it is busy fucking us to get at that sweet, sweet cash. They tend it carefully, lest they become its next victims.

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General Gameplay Concepts
Cast spells! Fight with creatures! Cast more spells! Is your opponent dead yet? Yes? Good job. No? You're probably dead. Shuffle up and play again!

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Can You Give Me A Real Primer, Please
OK, yes. I stole this too:

If you want to get a closer look at the rules, check out this link and click on “New to Magic”. There is also a game called Duels of the Planeswalkers (there are three games right now: the original, 2012, and 2013), and you can get the demo for any of the three versions for free on X-Box Live, Playstation Network, or Steam. They have tutorials built in! Isn’t that thoughtful?

...you’re having trouble finding players? Fair enough. You know the store where you got those cards? Ask them if they have any events. Typically they will have a thing called Friday Night Magic. There’s meet and greets, mini-tourneys, casual play, trades, anonymous group sex (but they will deny it if asked), the works. Also, don’t worry about the lore. Do you need to care about the story in Risk? No, you just conquer all the other motherfuckers. If you want, you can look into it, but it doesn't need to distract you from enjoying the game.

The Colors
There are five colors of magic and tens of thousands of individual cards between them (not to mention colorless cards!), but they generally adhere to the following style. (Some cards step out of these for various reasons, but this is a good rule of thumb.)

White: Efficient armies of small creatures. Permanent status effects. Healing. Judgment. Angels. “Good guy” magic.
Blue: Countermagic. Flying creatures. Locking down the board. Mind control. Card advantage through drawing more cards than an opponent. Mermaids and gigantic sea-creatures. “Dick” magic.
Black: Creature killing. Creature punishment. Player punishment (and not just opponents). Card advantage through forcing an opponent to discard. Vampires. Zombies. Ghouls. “Bad guy” magic.
Red: Direct damage hitting creatures and players. Fast creatures with drawbacks. Fire. Goblins. Dragons. “Psychopath” magic.
Green: Enormous creatures, hard to kill creatures, magical energy generated by creatures, and anti-air that would make an SR-71 nervous. Elves and beasts. “Forest path” magic.

Here are some USEFUL LINKS:
Magicthegathering.com - This is the Magic mothership! You can find all sorts of goodies here, including article series that cover the many facets of magic from both a player and designer perspective. I'm pretty partial to Making Magic, Building on a Budget, and Limited Information!
Gatherer - This is Wizards' official card database. You search for cards using some different parameters (color, cost, artist, to name a few). Good for building theme decks or finding a particular wording.
The Magic Rules page - This is where you can find the comprehensive rules alongside a list of every keyword in magic.
MagicCards.Info - a Gatherer-esque site which provides quick search, comparison of different card arts for individual cards, and card pricing information.
Star City Games - This is probably the next biggest Magic site next to the mothership; it has its own database alongside its own daily columns. As an added bonus, Star City is a very reputable Magic retailer, and is a good place to look if you want a price reference for certain cards.
ChannelFireball - The best free resource for Magic: the Gathering strategy articles, and a reputable card dealer in its own right.
MTGSalvation - A good website dedicated to Magic, and the best source for compiled information about "spoiled" cards from upcoming (unreleased) Magic sets.
Tappedout.net - A website used to post decks to share with others, or to find ideas for your own decks.
Essentialmagic.com - This is another site that allows you to construct decks and post them online for critique. It also has a comprehensive list of formats and what sets are legal in each of them.
The Magic Academy - This is an article series that was written as a tool for new players to get themselves familiar with the game. It explains the philosophies behind certain cards, when to play them, when to attack, how to block correctly, and other helpful topics.
Five Rules for Avoiding Manascrew - One Weird Trick To Devise A Solid Mana Base For Any Deck
Deckbuilding 101: Five Tips for Better Deckbuilding - A must-read for any Magic player. It doesn't really discuss specific strategy, but spells out certain fundamentals that every Magic player should absorb right into his bone marrow.

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Release of New Sets
New sets come out roughly every three months, with a "core set" being released every summer, and a "block" of three thematically- (and often mechanically-) linked sets being released at three-month intervals throughout the year.

Since Magic 2010, core sets have been comprised of roughly 50% new cards and 50% reprints. They serve to be simpler sets mechanically, which lowers the barrier-to-entry for new players, as well as helping to sculpt the Standard environment by defining a set of reprinted cards which are available to the format. The most recent core set is Magic 2013.

The advanced expansions that comprise a "block" are comprised of a much higher ratio of new cards to reprints (90-10 or 95-5, excluding basic lands), and tend to introduce more complex cards and interactions. The first set of a block is typically a "large" expansion (~250 cards), and the second and third sets are "small" expansions (~160 cards). The current block is comprised of three sets: Return to Ravnica, Gatecrash, and (ahem) Dragon's Maze.

Duel Decks, Premium Decks, Commander products, and "From The Vault" anthologies are released periodically, and provide Wizards a way to make more money by releasing cards that are in demand for other formats, without making those cards legal in Standard by shoehorning them into a new set.

---

Magic: The Gathering Online

A Guide for the New and Returning Player (totally mostly stolen)
As it goes with most things, players enter and exit the game with some regularity. Similarly, the game changes with the introduction of every new set and the costs to play are always in flux due to the various economic conditions and overall popularity of the game. So how you gonna stay on top of a thing?

To start: Rules Primer for New and Returning Players

Once you've slogged through that, you can start in two places on MTGO (or both): Limited, or Constructed.

Limited (Booster Draft / Sealed) - These formats are played using unopened product, and the prize payout for Limited events *is* unopened product, so the cost-per-event will vary wildly based on your performance. It can also be dangerously expensive for the beginner or bad player, so be cautious about entering into the game and heading straight to the draft queues. Expenditures of $11-$14 will quickly multiply and you will be broke as fuck.

Standard - The most popular "Constructed" format, comprised of the two most recent "blocks" + the most recent core set (though there is a brief interval where multiple core sets are legal). As with most Constructed formats, Standard has a high cost of entry that is partially exacerbated by the fact that the format rotates yearly and players have to "re-up". However, once you have a deck built, its shell will generally last you 6-12 months, and your cards will tend to retain at least a portion of their value until they rotate out of the format. Standard events also have a much cheaper entry fee, since you don't have to cover the cost of unopened product.

Beyond Limited and Standard, you'll find Block Constructed, Modern, Legacy, Pauper, and Classic. Besides Pauper, which is exclusively commons (albeit some relatively expensive commons), the other formats all have similar (or greater) costs to Standard.

FAQ
Q: Where can I procure this game?
A: Right here, at the official Wizards site.

Q: This is ugly as hell?
A: The new version of the MTGO client is in Beta testing. Also, a lot of people fail to appreciate how hard it is to get a full M:TG battlefield's worth of cards and information onto a single screen without having it look cluttered. It used to be even uglier.

Q: It runs like shit.
A: Yeah, sorry.

Q: What is there to do in the game?
A: Almost everything you can do in Paper Magic, and a couple other things besides. Currently, you'll have access to about 90% of every card ever printed -- almost everything worthwhile that's Pre-Mirage has been compiled into four Master's Edition sets, while everything from Mirage on is available (though only Standard-legal sets are purchasable from the official store). All the major formats are played online, with a constant stream of Draft, Sealed, Block Constructed, Standard, and Modern tournaments. The occasional Legacy and 100-Card Singleton tournament will also fire, but don't hold your breath! The multiplayer room is home to 2- and 3-Headed Giant, Emperor, Commander/EDH, FFA, and other niche game types.

Q: How much is this going to cost me?
A: A new account costs 10 dollars (if you like the game, it's going to end up costing you a lot more). Every new account comes with a set of gold-bordered cards taken from the Duels of the Planeswalkers game, as well as a mish-mash of cards from the most recent core set and a booster from that same set. It's suggested that you don't "open" the Planeswalker pack, as the cards can't be used outside of a single specific format and they will clutter your collection.

Q: How do you get unopened boosters for less than $4 each? How do you get boosters that are no longer sold by Wizards?
A: People and bots sell them! Generally, since the payout for Constructed and Limited tournaments is in booster packs of a current set, people are willing to sell those for less than face value in order to turn them into a more universal MTGO currency ("Event Tickets," which correspond roughly to dollars). You can frequently find packs of recently released sets for around 3.5 "tickets" apiece.

Q: Where are good places to buy singles on MTGO?
A: @ChaosHat recommends CardHoarder and MTGO Traders. He claims they are "consistently cheap" and "pretty nice".

Q: Where can I sell my singles back to feed my drafting addiction?
A: I'd recommend any of the CardBuyingBot bots, or the Supernovabot bots. Their prices are generally pretty fair.

Q: How could anyone pay that much for fake cards?
A: Because the game is fun? Also, if you collect every card in a set, you can redeem them for a pull set of paper cards (check the "set redemption" details on the MTGO website to see which sets are currently eligible for redemption).

Q: How do I join the PA clan?
A: Add metaghost to your buddies list once you sign up. Then, if you see him online, PM him and ask for a clan invite. He claims to usually be on evenings, EST/EDT.

Q: How come I can't play spells at the appropriate times? I'd really appreciate being able to drop a Qasali Ambusher on dat azz.
A: Check your stops. Go into your Gameplay Settings and you'll see a grid of boxes structured according the various timing steps. If the game isn't letting you cast a spell when you want/should be able to, check the appropriate box. Beware of too many stops though, as it can slow your play to a crawl and result in undeserved losses. As a related aside, to respond to your own spell-casting, primarily for the use of a card like Twincast, you must hold the CTRL key as you cast the initial spell.

Q: My opponent in this tournament hasn't done anything for like 3 minutes. What gives?
A: In what is one of the most annoying and persistent glitches of all time, it's possible that it's YOU who haven't done anything for 3 minutes. Sometimes priority doesn't get passed properly and the client bugs out. If you think this might be the case, close MTGO, re-open it and log back in.

Q: When I'm online, how do I link cards in the chat windows like a pro?
A: Just put the card name in curly brackets. Like this: {Terror}

---

Good luck! This may be a card game for children, but you're an adult, god damn it, and you're going to win.

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Posts

  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    Reserved for... whatever people reserve this post for.

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  • metaghostmetaghost An intriguing odor A delicate touchRegistered User regular
    Just because Magic players love spoilers doesn't mean you should hide the entire OP behind spoilers.

  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    Very well!

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  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    Meh, it's makes scrolling past it faster! Damn if you do, damned if you don't. Now where's my sliver spoilers for 2014.

  • Custom SpecialCustom Special I know I am, I'm sure I am, I'm Sounders 'til I die!Registered User regular
    I think magiccards.info should be added to the useful links.
    Gatherer it's very useful for wide searches, but I really like using magiccards.info for looking quickly at multiple card arts and sets and having the super handy price range right on the same page.

    XBL: F4ll0utBP | STEAM | PSN : CustomSpecial | Bnet: F4ll0ut#1636
    Elbasunu
  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    edited April 2013
    I think magiccards.info should be added to the useful links.
    Gatherer it's very useful for wide searches, but I really like using magiccards.info for looking quickly at multiple card arts and sets and having the super handy price range right on the same page.

    Added!

    EDIT: post or PM me any other feedback you have on the OP. I'll be pruning and tweaking periodically throughout the day.

    Griswold on
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  • XeddicusXeddicus Registered User regular
    You may want to add a bit into the MTGO section about constructing your decks for the proper format and how the casual game modes can be hard to get a game going (except for pauper and a few others) and it ranges from wait a bit to never (mutiplayer Legacy) and that playing the formats that allow all the cards can be a little rough since a lot of people have killer decks.

  • ElbasunuElbasunu Registered User regular
    beatiaire was improperly including basic lands in it's faux drafts. fixed now.

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  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    I already miss the old thread.

    Add something about how playing Blue makes you a horrible person. The kind that kicks dogs and cheers for the Oakland Raiders.

    oh h*ck
  • metaghostmetaghost An intriguing odor A delicate touchRegistered User regular
    Turkson wrote: »
    I already miss the old thread.

    Add something about how playing Blue makes you a horrible person. The kind that kicks dogs and cheers for the Oakland Raiders.

    I first-picked Sphinx's Revelation in an RTR draft, then immediately moved into Golgari.

    Because fuck blue.

  • LucedesLucedes might be real Registered User regular
    @Turkson weird typo there, i think you meant to type Red.

  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    Posted my prerelease pools & builds for those interested.

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  • metaghostmetaghost An intriguing odor A delicate touchRegistered User regular
    Lucedes wrote: »
    Turkson weird typo there, i think you meant to type Red.

    Playing Red doesn't make you a horrible person, just means you're into helplessly flailing whilst in the grip of fate.

  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    2HG this weekend with girlfriend

    She went Orzhov, got Golgari as ally. I went Simic, got Azorius as ally.

    Pretty balling.

    The Simic pool was really solid. Plasm Capture, three Runner's Bane, a bunch of other counters and controly stuff alongside a capable evolve curve.

    The Orzhov pool was weird. Two extort cards, total. But pulled an Alms Beast. Decided to go an agro Orzhov and control Simic route. It worked great!

    ...except gf had done midnight prerelease and was literally chugging coffee after coffee and still nearly falling asleep. So we dropped after two rounds, and gave the second team our victory by conceding at the last possible moment (even though we had the game completely locked down).

    Probably one of the best 2HG experiences I've had, despite it being cut short.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited April 2013
    @Griswold - Suggestion: bracket [Magic] in the thread title. [Magic]al cards.

    BTW, there was at least one 2HG flight at another local store where the players made a gentleman's agreement prior to pack opening that nobody will play Debt to the Deathless.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
    DevoutlyApathetic
  • ElbasunuElbasunu Registered User regular
    Did they agree not to play all the other cards that reference opponents? because that sounds dumb as hell to me.

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  • ShadowenShadowen Snores in the morning LoserdomRegistered User regular
    Your OP pleases me, @Griswold. Sleep well. I'll most likely kill you in the morning.

  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    Shadowen wrote: »
    Your OP pleases me, @Griswold. Sleep well. I'll most likely kill you in the morning.

    I, um...

    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQfHyEkoWbZmUSdX-U8PWoMKo0cZgj54_Xva8RHwpCo48RG_9xWlg

    ?

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  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    Lucedes wrote: »
    @Turkson weird typo there, i think you meant to type Red.

    Red really needs something else besides burn, dragons, random effects, and overly wordy terrible horrid horrible bad awful gross disgusting revolting miserable expensive sorceries.

    So after cracking 28 packs and getting 2 shocklands, I can say that the odds of a shockland per pack is 1/14.*

    *Most likely wrong

    oh h*ck
  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    Turkson wrote: »
    Lucedes wrote: »
    @Turkson weird typo there, i think you meant to type Red.

    Red really needs something else besides burn, dragons, random effects, and overly wordy terrible horrid horrible bad awful gross disgusting revolting miserable expensive sorceries.

    So after cracking 28 packs and getting 2 shocklands, I can say that the odds of a shockland per pack is 1/14.*

    *Most likely wrong

    I got 1 shock across 12 packs, so I don't think that's far off.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • blahmcblahblahmcblah You pick your side and you stick - you don't cut and run when things get ugly. Registered User regular
    1/15 for me so far.

  • B.C.B.C. is a bee! remember me?Registered User regular
    Apparently casting Epic Experiment is a good way to piss people on MTGO off.

    Friend code for Pokemon fiends everywhere: Arch 0447-6824-1112
  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    Feral wrote: »
    @Griswold - Suggestion: bracket [Magic] in the thread title. [Magic]al cards.

    BTW, there was at least one 2HG flight at another local store where the players made a gentleman's agreement prior to pack opening that nobody will play Debt to the Deathless.

    Two of my friends were able to combo Debt to the Deathless with Zhur-Taa Ancient (Mana Flare beast). D:

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    Feral
  • silence1186silence1186 Character shields down! As a wingmanRegistered User regular
    blahmcblah wrote: »
    1/15 for me so far.

    I think your chances are supposed to be half those of getting a shockland in RtR or GTC.

  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    edited April 2013
    3 for 46 so far (so ~1/15)... all of them opened by my wife in her two pools. :P

    EDIT: And one Maze's End, not I need any after 6 prerelease events.

    Vyolynce on
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  • FremFrem Registered User regular
    What is the best way to acquire interesting cards for casual play with friends, and maybe occasionally strangers at cons? Starter decks and deck building kits?

  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    I like some of the duel decks. The starter decks at least come with two packs now but I'm not a huge fan. I don't know what comes in deck builder kits.

    oh h*ck
  • NullzoneNullzone Registered User regular
    Deckbuilder kits are just a bunch of copies of "staple" cards, not really what you want. If you want interesting decks you can bust out casually, duel decks and products like Planechase are the way to go, as the decks are thematic and include a span of interesting cards from across magic's history.

    FeralKurgan
  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    edited April 2013
    Frem wrote: »
    What is the best way to acquire interesting cards for casual play with friends, and maybe occasionally strangers at cons? Starter decks and deck building kits?

    Do your friends have decks already? What kind of decks?

    Griswold on
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  • FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    Has Wizards announced this summer's casual multiplayer product yet?

    I've been behind on the news.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
  • metaghostmetaghost An intriguing odor A delicate touchRegistered User regular
    Feral wrote: »
    Has Wizards announced this summer's casual multiplayer product yet?

    I've been behind on the news.

    I'm under the impression that Modern Masters is taking the role for the year, though it obviously serves a different function.

    Could be wrong about that, but I would expect WotC to have released a one-sheet about any additional product coming this summer.

  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    metaghost wrote: »
    Feral wrote: »
    Has Wizards announced this summer's casual multiplayer product yet?

    I've been behind on the news.

    I'm under the impression that Modern Masters is taking the role for the year, though it obviously serves a different function.

    Could be wrong about that, but I would expect WotC to have released a one-sheet about any additional product coming this summer.

    Seems quite likely, given its June 7 release date.

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  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    I believe they have made a passing mention of some Commander stuff (and making that an annual thing), but that might be positioned later in the year to maximize gift potential.

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  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    I really, really hope all the stories of Modern Masters being a limited print are just rumors and innuendo. Modern is way too expensive to get into at a competitive level.

    oh h*ck
  • VyolynceVyolynce Registered User regular
    Turkson wrote: »
    I really, really hope all the stories of Modern Masters being a limited print are just rumors and innuendo. Modern is way too expensive to get into at a competitive level.

    If by "rumors and innuendo" you mean "direct quotes from Aaron Forsythe."
    The set will not be Standard legal and will be produced in very conservative quantities
    There will be inevitable comparisons of this set to Chronicles, a much-maligned release from 1995 that flooded the market with reprints of highly sought-after cards from Magic's first few expansions. The outrage from collectors with regards to that set led to the creation of the Reserved List, and our hands are still tied from the effects of those compounded mistakes 17 years later.

    Chronicles was brought up internally time and time again as Modern Masters evolved. Our R&D and Brand teams have spent many hours contemplating what Chronicles was trying to accomplish and where it went wrong. I ultimately feel that its biggest sin was that it did not respect people's existing collections—a sin we have no intention of repeating.

    A glance at print run numbers available in the public domain shows that Chronicles likely increased the number of some cards in existence by a factor of ten or more! Cards that were rare and highly collectible were suddenly ubiquitous. The error was one of scale, and while I understand what the people working here at the time were trying to accomplish, in retrospect it was handled badly. Granted, they were adding their cards to what was then Type 2 (now Standard) and we are not, but I have to think there was a better way for them to solve the problem.

    We won't make that mistake again. We don't want to turn cards from scarce to abundant in the blink of an eye, but we do want to alter the availability by a matter of degrees, all with the goal of growing the reach of the Modern format. Ideally, over time, any short-term drop in desirability of older cards you may own will be recouped as more players enter the format. I can't say it enough: our print run is very small, especially compared to what we're making for our current headliner sets like Return to Ravnica. We're playing in a very delicate space, and we know that, but the promise of the Modern format was that we would address card availability issues, and we are focused on figuring out the best way to do that.

    If the set works and accomplishes what we want—more Modern players—we'll contemplate making another set like it some time down the road. But for now, our plan is to stick with our small printing and keep a close eye on what happens.

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  • turtleantturtleant Gunpla Dad is the best.Registered User regular
    Yep, I've already written modern masters off. Tiny print run + super in demand + being full of second hand sellers wet dreams means I doubt if I ever see a pack, much less be able to buy enough to cut into the price of a modern deck.

    Unless they tell collectors to get bent, modern will eventually start to die, just like vintage and legacy are.

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  • metaghostmetaghost An intriguing odor A delicate touchRegistered User regular
    edited April 2013
    While I do think Modern is a format at risk, I don't think card availability is one of its primary concerns. Modern Masters may seem to have been developed with the intent of bringing an additional quantity of some cards to market, putting an emphasis on the issue of card availability, but I suspect they really just wanted to leverage any interest in the format while they could. Modern seemed to have worn out its welcome with competitive players, and this is a way of bringing attention to Modern without forcing players to actually play Modern. It's a somewhat ingenious solution to the problem.

    Ultimately, Modern is much more capable of being affected by the release of new sets than Vintage and Legacy are; as such, it can be better sustained by the release of new sets, especially now that the shocklands are in abundance. There's no real way for Wizards to reprint the original dual lands that I'm aware of, otherwise I imagine they would have.

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  • FremFrem Registered User regular
    Griswold wrote: »
    Frem wrote: »
    What is the best way to acquire interesting cards for casual play with friends, and maybe occasionally strangers at cons? Starter decks and deck building kits?

    Do your friends have decks already? What kind of decks?

    It varies, but we mostly play together casually using whatever. One friend has been doing this since Revnica and is hardcore; he has a ton of cards and decks. Another one just buys duel decks and starter decks and uses them largely as is. Yet another friend is hardcore with limited income; he doesn't have many decks, but he carefully assembled each one on paper and bought each card individually.

  • GriswoldGriswold that's rough, buddyRegistered User regular
    Frem wrote: »
    Griswold wrote: »
    Frem wrote: »
    What is the best way to acquire interesting cards for casual play with friends, and maybe occasionally strangers at cons? Starter decks and deck building kits?

    Do your friends have decks already? What kind of decks?

    It varies, but we mostly play together casually using whatever. One friend has been doing this since Revnica and is hardcore; he has a ton of cards and decks. Another one just buys duel decks and starter decks and uses them largely as is. Yet another friend is hardcore with limited income; he doesn't have many decks, but he carefully assembled each one on paper and bought each card individually.

    Cool!

    If your friends are rocking 60-card decks without adhering too much to any given Constructed format, I would just poke around on Gatherer and try to find a couple cards you might want to build around.

    -If you like blitz aggro with decks full of cheap creatures, cards like Wild Nacatl and Burning-Tree Emissary might be worth building around.
    -If you like big, beefy, midrangey creatures, there's always Loxodon Smiter and Wilt-Leaf Liege.
    -If you like burn, there's an infinite number of Lightning Bolts and their variants.
    -If you like working to stabilize the game and then controlling it superior late-game options, you can always build around a card like Mystical Teachings.

    The list goes on and on, and there's no shortage of powerful cards in the game's history. If you can find a couple to build around, you can narrow your Gatherer searches to find the missing pieces (or the fine folks here can help you!)

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  • TerrendosTerrendos Decorative Monocle Registered User regular
    You could also check out the MTG and StarCityGames sites. They'll occasionally have crazy/silly casual decks alongside the "Standard metagame defining decks" that they also tend to post.

    Alternately, get hold of a couple of Maze's End and build a deck around that card, with Door to Nothingness as your alternate win condition.

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