Friday, May 21, 2010

Step N: Sort Your Cards

In previous posts, I featured an "unpacking" video of one of the first "starter" Magic experiments. It was of course the original Magic: The Gathering Starter Deck. This is what we had to work with, folks.

Since 1993 (holy cow, Deep Space Nine is the same age as Magic the Gathering), Wizards has attempted to find a better way to "start" the new magic player out on the right path to excellence, enjoyment and eventual psychological addiction (I kid, I kid).

The most promising evolution was the Theme Deck. "We will give you cards, and they will all work together!" Wizards said, and then passed out such awesomeness as Jungle Jam (a tutor card, right out of the gates!).

The basic structure of the theme deck has changed back and forth since then, but today a new product just came out and I feel genuine jealousy for the today's magic beginner.

Today, Wizards released the "Deckbuilder's Toolkit."

Here's a professionally-done unboxing from the always entertaining Evin Erwin

If I strip all my emotions away and look at this Toolkit objectively, one of the best card offerings in this box is probably the playset of Terramorphic Expanse.

After almost 2 decades, still the most frustrating thing about playing a game of Magic is not having the right lands to cast your spells. In the Time Spiral expansion, they came out with the ultimate utilitarian do-everything land fixer in the form of the Expanse, and they've been reprinting it like crazy since then. And the Deckbuilder's Toolkit apparently gives you FOUR of them. BAM. In 1 fell swoop.

Compare this to the Beta Starter, where you might not get enough basic land! Does anyone remember trading for basic land? I don't even remember doing that, but surely I must have at some point. Because you sure didn't get that stuff for free.

Second is probably the Lightning Bolts. Because they are awesome.

Another interesting feature that I just found out today while watching Erwin's video: one of the fold-outs is actually a detailed deck construction manual. It tells you how to make a deck! How to find synergy. How to figure out how much land you need. Typical archetypes to get you going.

No more singleton "I like things" decks…what will the world come to?

This is really a lightning-leap forward in Magic development. And hopefully they keep printing these for a long time. I might even get one, I've played Magic for quite a while and still don't have 4-of many of the better utility cards. Plus Internet says its only $20, which is only a little more than those 4 packs cost normally.

What a country!

No comments:

Post a Comment