Magic: The Gathering (TCG) Catch-all

Fedaykin98 wrote:
I've been using Dragon Shields with KMC Perfect Sizes to double-sleeve Commander decks.

So by the time I got through five Commander decks with double sleeves (never mind that I got some bad batches of Perfect Size sleeves that weren't as small as they're supposed to be), I was convinced I was a neurotic idiot for double-sleeving.

Then within 10 minutes of starting our Commander night on Saturday, my brother spills my friend's drink into his deck, getting Coke inside the outer sleeve of some cards...but not inside the inner sleeve!

I guess I'm now a confirmed, lifetime double-sleever.

In other news, 6 people is way too many for Commander, especially if one hasn't played in 20 years, and another has never played. Still, I think people had a good time, and the newer folks want to try a sealed deck night.

Hey, does anyone in the DC/Baltimore area play? I was thinking of starting a group that meets every now and then to play MTG for a few hours on a Saturday, maybe once a month or something. Would anyone be interested? It will is potentially a mix of GWJers and a few of my own friends. Right now I don't know where we would meet, as I don't know who is interested, I just came up with the idea a few minutes ago.

I finally started a regular group last fall. I already knew TheWalt, and one of our friends' little brother wanted to play sometime. I've had my eye open for professionals who play Magic for some time, but I rarely make it to store events because I have young kids.

Anyway, we met a 4th at the RTR pre-release. He already had a group, though not a large one. Now we're doing drafts and such every week or two. We did a Commander night so we could try out that format (lesson learned: 4 is the right number, not 6), and I lent decks to a couple people who were getting back into Magic after 18 years, and one who'd never played before.

Tonight we're doing a sealed deck night, since that's kind of a good format for both new and experienced players. Have 3 from my regular group and 3 who have barely played.

By the way, the best place I've found to buy boxes is CollectorStore.com . $90 boxes, no tax, free shipping if you spend $100 or more.

I think I'm in the same boat of wanting to get a local group started because A) I won't be playing with my coworkers anymore and B) we didn't play all that often or seriously anyway.

Vancouver-Richmond, BC area for any GWJers who want to scratch that Magic itch more regularly.

Btw, the next block was announced at PAX East this weekend, and there's a brief article about it today on the official site.

The fall set will be called Theros, and appears to take place on a Greco-Roman inspired plane.

Mark Rosewater also tweeted that this set was lead designed by him and lead developed by [I forget], and that this was the same duo who led on Innistrad. A lot of folks (not me, but I have little experience with it) consider Innistrad to be the best set to draft ever.

Hoping for a card called "Unleash the Kraken!"

Fedaykin98 wrote:
Btw, the next block was announced at PAX East this weekend, and there's a brief article about it today on the official site.

The fall set will be called Theros, and appears to take place on a Greco-Roman inspired plane.

Mark Rosewater also tweeted that this set was lead designed by him and lead developed by [I forget], and that this was the same duo who led on Innistrad. A lot of folks (not me, but I have little experience with it) consider Innistrad to be the best set to draft ever.

Hoping for a card called "Unleash the Kraken!" :lol:

Several of my friends are looking forward to it as well, and are already trying to figure out if it will be something along the lines of War of Humanoids vs Gods/Themselves or Gods vs Gods. On a side note, I am attempting to build a black/red knight deck based around discarding cards then playing knights from the grave, I plan for it to be mostly creatures and of course Tibalt will be in it as well.

Immortal Servitude wants to be in that deck too. I so want to make a deck with this card. But I think for flavor reasons it would be zombies.

BassMadMadoo wrote:
Immortal Servitude wants to be in that deck too. I so want to make a deck with this card. But I think for flavor reasons it would be zombies. :D

I'm using Haakon, Scourge of Stromgarde, so it will be interesting. http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=haakon,%20stromgald%20scourge

Oh yes, Haakon looks pretty rad. I was thinking standard deck creation since you mentioned Tibalt. Did you pick up the new Dual Deck for the foil alternate art Tibalt?

BassMadMadoo wrote:
Oh yes, Haakon looks pretty rad. I was thinking standard deck creation since you mentioned Tibalt. Did you pick up the new Dual Deck for the foil alternate art Tibalt?

Indeed, I got to test it out and it is evil if you get the right hand. One of my friends modified it intensely, adding in such cards as Rakdos' Revenge and Choice of Damnation, he made an evil deck into something people will not play against under any circumstances. On the other side though, I haven't gotten to test out Sorin yet, though I hear it can be nasty as well.

In my final days at the office I managed to dominate coworkers with a lot of those new Gatecrash cards, injecting a lot of the Boros flavour into my humans deck and creating a surprisingly effective exalted/extort Orzhov life sapper. (still haven't pulled a Blind Obedience yet tho...)

It really didn't blow me away at first but now I am really enjoying the Gatecrash even more than RTR. The guilds are more up my alley (Orzhov, Boros, Dimir) as opposed to only digging Rakdos in Ravnica.

I started out liking Gruul the best, and then Boros, but now my favorite GTC guild to play is Orzhov.

I am just getting into Magic again for the first time since 1996, thanks to PAX East! A friend suggested I buy an Event deck for nostalgia. We played a few games and it was great! However, I can tell the game has moved on a lot in 17 years, as some of the subtleties of the Event deck were lost on me. I was hoping I could draw on your collective experience for a bit of advice on where to go from here.

Some background: My wife is interested in learning to playing with me, and we aren't likely to make constructed decks for a long time, if ever. However, we like a variety of game experiences. The two Event decks we bought were from Avacyn and Gatecrash and they were a good start, although Intro decks might have been a simpler reintroduction. I've since picked up two Intro decks (Magic 2013 green/red and black/white). We played tonight, and they are definitely better for the level my wife and I are at. We held off on opening the boosters and it is neat to see her excited about what they might hold...

So, my question is: without using constructed decks, how can we make sure the matches are even? We are looking for a grab-deck-and-play experience like a living card game, at least to start. I know Intros should be weaker than Event decks, therefore we shouldn't play Intro vs Event. But I am curious if in the future we could buy more Event decks and expect them to be an equal match for the ones we already own. It already seems like Gatecrash is stronger than Avacyn Restored- another friend at PAX had Return to Ravnica and it seemed better matched. If we buy event decks from Magic 2014 and beyond, do you think they will be about as powerful as current Event decks, or is it more or less random? How can we make sure this game stays fun without taking up all our time keeping up with the metagame? Cheers!

They make sets of two decks that are meant to be played against each other, called Duel Decks. The latest one just came out about a week ago - Sorin vs Tibalt. You can get it for $20 plus shipping at collectorstore.com, or a few bucks more off Amazon (may have free shipping).

My favorite set is Ajani vs Nicol Bolas. I think it's still fairly affordable on Amazon, but the price has gone up over time.

Last fall there was a Ravnica-themed pair called Izzet vs Golgari. It's okay, but in my experience and also a friend of mine's, Izzet always wins.

Imho these are the best pick up and play tool. Theme decks are probably not bad, but they usually contain a less interesting mix of cards, imho. Theme decks are probably slightly less complex, but I wouldn't say the Duel Decks are too complicated.

Schmutzli wrote:
So, my question is: without using constructed decks, how can we make sure the matches are even?

Duel decks are built precisely for that purpose. I've heard good things about the Sorin vs. Tibalt set that just came out. The Venser vs. Koth decks are pretty good for that as well if you can find them.

If you decide you want to build your own decks to get the same experience, here's an old Duelist article on how to do that. I made some of my favorite decks after reading that article back in the day. Still have them too... they must be like 15 years old at this point. Angels vs. Vampires was the original pair. Now I've expanded them into a set of 5 decks that are more or less balanced along enemy color lines.

The Sorin vs. Tibalt package looks great. I'll probably order one in the hopes of converting one of my board game friends over to the dark side.

I just put the finishing touches on my discard/mill deck, heavily Dimir-flavoured. I originally fantasized about making a Rats deck befor realizing I was lacking in rat cards and generally had trouble sustaining the theme of rats and things that dwell around sewers.

But I will say this: Consuming Aberration...soooo good. I definitely need more than 1 in my deck.
It's "only" going for about $2.20. And I told myself I wouldn't invest in singles.

Was cleaning out the closet and found my missing magic cards from years gone by.

IMAGE(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v660/BaronOfHell666/2013-03-29180843_zps68453205.jpg)

Also found books on DOS, C++, visual basic, action figures, and the remote to a car that I thrown out because I couldn't find the remote. Still only half way down clean it out. Also had about 400 other magic cards that are in these plastic deck holder things. So if you need magic cards should come clean my place.

I got to test out my deck, it's still missing a few cards but it is definitely the fastest deck I have ever used and it hits hard despite the highest power in the deck being three. I can't wait until I have all the cards I need to complete the deck, Coat of Arms is going to make things silly when it arrives.

Maclintok wrote:
But I will say this: Consuming Aberration...soooo good. I definitely need more than 1 in my deck.
It's "only" going for about $2.20. And I told myself I wouldn't invest in singles.

That was one of the 5 prerelease promo cards for Gatecrash and it's the featured rare in the Dimir intro pack, so they're a bit easier to come by than usual.

That's a sweet find, Baron of Hell. (Except possibly for the Homelands booster.)

Just F Y'all's I's, I don't think I've mentioned that there's a Grand Prix in Houston the weekend of June 15. And the format is Sealed Deck, so anyone can easily participate.

Me, TheWalt, and the rest of our crew are greatly anticipating it.

Vargen wrote:

If you decide you want to build your own decks to get the same experience, here's an old Duelist article on how to do that. I made some of my favorite decks after reading that article back in the day. Still have them too... they must be like 15 years old at this point. Angels vs. Vampires was the original pair. Now I've expanded them into a set of 5 decks that are more or less balanced along enemy color lines.

That's an awesome article, thanks. I'd love to see your 5 deck card list if you have it handy to share.

Also, Mind Grind: amazing.

I was on a 3 turn clock against the Simic event deck. My milling had gone fairly well during the match but was on the defensive recasting Mortus Strider and any rats I could muster to block the growing enemy army. Final turn of play I cast Mind Grind, pumped 6 mana into it and decked my opponent out of his 22 remaining cards, pulling out the upset.

In another match I tried the same desperation move when my opponent had 10 cards in deck and he pulled 5 lands in a row.

It's a powerful card but just as importantly it's an interesting card to use

I got a Mind Grind out of the half-box I split with a friend. Easily one of the most screwed up cards I've seen in a very, very long time. The only problem is I hate mill decks, they're boring to play and they're boring to play against.

I have no love for milling, even if you can win with it, and I'm a total Spike.

Some people love it, though. I don't think I've ever been milled out except in a game of Commander, of all things, and there it wasn't even intentional - I had drawn more cards than the winning player during the game, and lots of mill that applied to everyone had been played.

I have a standard mill deck I made, but I don't think I've ever won with it by milling somebody out of existence.

Usually I get one or more Jace's Phantasm's out early followed by at least one Mind Sculpt. Game tends to end pretty quickly after that (especially if I pull Trepanation Blade).

I'm not arguing against the effectiveness of mill, I've lost to it before, but there are so many more interesting ways to play the game. My favorite combo decks that I've made are:

- An Exalted deck that I call Stoic Vigilance. Lock-down is a combination of Winter Orb, Static Orb, Dueling Grounds, and Stoic Angel, and it uses Seedborn Muse to free itself from the restrictions. It's fun, it can win even without getting the full lock, and it's pretty damn efficient too.

- A power deck I call Progenitor (little RE5 reference there). The entire idea was "how can I cast Progenitus without actually casting it?" Elvish Piper, Keeper of Progenitus, Joiner Adept, and Dramatic Entrance make it a super fun combo deck which has successfully dropped a Progenitus on turn 3 before.

Most of my decks are some kind of crazy combo deck. I also have a Dragonstorm deck that can drop a 15/15 Kilnmouth on turn 1, a Vampire deck that can kill a single player with 2 spells, and many more. My point is just that mill, as far as combo-centric decks go, is pretty low on the fun meter.

Is the Dragon deck like this:

Swamp, Dark Ritual, Entomb, Exhume (or other reanimator spell)?

Actually, that could only get you a 14/14 Kilnmouth turn one, on the draw. Math makes 15/15 improbable, so what's your line of play?

I had a Dragon Reanimator deck once. I'm almost done porting it to Commander.

Close, but it's a Dragonstorm deck. I might be mis-remembering the numbers, might not be 14/14. Let me re-compute:

Mountain, Rite of Flame x3, Seething Song, Dragonstorm, 2x Dragon cards. Rite of Flame x3 gives you 7 red mana, Seething Song gives you another 2 for 9 plus you've cast 4 spells. Dragonstorm costs 9, storms 4 times, so you grab a Kilnmouth. 2 Dragon cards in your hand gives the Kilnmouth +6/+6, so 11/11 total.

OK, so 11/11 not 14/14, but you get the idea. The one time I managed that actual draw my friends immediately conceded. It's weak to a Force of Will or other first turn counter, but the actual draw is pretty rare. Much more often I'll get like a 3rd turn 2-3 creature Dragonstorm, or I'll just wind up drawing my Dragonspeaker Shamans and just flat casting a bunch of dragons.

And just like that, I'm thinking I should change that deck to be five colors, because the old deck was four (no green). The current build is Jund (BRG). Hmm.

REALLY thought it was cool to play Eternal Dragon in that deck.

Looks like I may be getting back into Magic!!! My new manager started last week, and he's just coming from a job at Wizards. For our first team meeting today, he brought in cards for everyone - everyone got a 2013 Intro Pack, Gatecrash Booster Battle Pack, and Return to Ravnica Battle Booster. We may start doing games over lunch or something! Glad I'll have someone to play with again.