Monday, July 26, 2010

The Last Guardian

When you need mac n' cheese…or cat litter…or shampoo, you probably have a local store you invariably go to. You're familiar with the isle layout. You know where everything is. You know the entrances and exits.

I have a place like that.

It's called Target.

You probably have a Target. Perhaps we have shopped together at Target, unknowingly, perhaps at different Targets in different cities but with unified mind all the same.

Yesterday I saw a product I've been curious about for a while… the Deckbuilder's Toolkit.

Let it be known I do not buy my products lightly. I weighed the options back and forth for a while, as my cart sat patiently filled with cat litter, mac n' cheese and a delicious toolkit-shaped void.

Eventually the id won. The kit went into the cart. I pushed my treasures back towards the check out. I was almost there.

And then I had to face him.

The Last Guardian.

He was wearing a red shirt, as is customary of his ilk. He lurked behind the register, his eyes gleaming.

He wanted my money…and so much more.

I could have perhaps picked a different lane, as it is in Target there were others also willing to take my selections. But this one I chose

"Oh, Magic the Gathering!" he said, as if welcoming an old friend.

"I used to play this! Great game. My friends and I all had these cards when we were kids."

I didn't really know where the conversation would go…and this kept me on edge. Sometimes they go one way, sometimes they go another. I tried to smile.

Me: "Yep, I know all about that."

Him: "You know, I gave my whole collection away. Man, I'm really kicking myself now for it. I heard some of those cards are worth thousands of dollars."

Me: "Isn't that something."

Him: "I had a huge collection. Holograms, foils, you name it."

If this is some type of cold reading, he wasn't doing very well. I try not to give him any more information, and just try to get my bags of merchandise back into the cart.

He sees my hurry, but continues talking.

Him: "Oh, some of the new decks are really cool, too. I really like 'Hell's Minions'."

Him: "Yep, see you later, have fun!"

And then I was free, and into the packing lot. I was alive, my body and soul completely free of either cursing or petrification.

The contents of the Tool Kit are fairly well known at this point.

To tell you the truth, one of my main interests in getting this kit were the Lightning Bolts. In all the reviews I've read, the Kit has contained 3 of the ol' 3-damage-for-1-mana instants. And, as it turns out, mine was no different.

I've been playing since revised, and I did have a few Lightning Bolts to start with. But then my wife wanted to make a couple decks, and my precious Lightning Bolts somehow exited from regular circulation. She's never used a red deck against me either. Just one of those funny things.

So I got the Lightning Bolts. And a huge pile of other cards. One was Explosive Revelation, which is headed straight for my Niv-Mizzet EDH deck. The fact that you get to KEEP the card you draw makes all the difference, I think this will be amazing.

 Also contained inside were 4 booster packs. Priced at $4 normally, they made the Toolkit's retail of $20 seem like a pretty good deal. The Boosters I got were 2 Zendikar, 1 Worldwake and 1 Rise of the Eldrazi.

Booster Packs are random…totally and completely random. You are getting 15 cards picked out of about 249 by a machine. And 8 of these cards are probably going to be trash. But the dice came up a natural 20 this time around because one of the Zendikar packs contained none other than a foil Scalding Tarn, which will also be joining Niv-Mizzet. A card I never would have paid the money for as a single, and there it was looking up at me.

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