Monthly Archives: May 2011

The Commander’s Chair – The Lost World

Some people say that size doesn’t matter. Those people do not play green in Commander. Today, I will be going over the Jurrasic Park archetype for Commander. This archetype has one of the most simple, yet effective game plans. The plan is to drop as many big creatures as you can, and stomp your way to victory.

While a relatively simple deck style, it does require you to build the deck in a very different way to any other Commander deck. One of the largest differences in building a Jurrasic Park deck is the land count. Usually, Commander decks run between 35-40 lands. A Jurrasic park deck runs 45 lands and still runs mana accelerants. The other difference is that Jurrasic Park decks do not usually run non-creature answers to other decks. If a big creature can happen to shut down a combo player, that is just an added bonus. Today will use Mayael, the Anima as our Commander in an example of a Jurrasic Park deck. Read the rest of this entry

Facing the Double Drops

Picture yourself a Magic player. Okay, you’re here, so you probably don’t have to picture that. Odds are, you’ve also probably gone to a tournament or two, so you know a little bit about the way those work. You’ve sat behind your desk or at your table at home and pored over your collection, and you’ve spent the countless hours and had the agonizing headaches when you made the decisions about the final cards to cut. And so, I’ll just tell you to bring back those memories, and picture yourself at a tournament, with the fifty minutes ticking down, a handful of cards, and in front of you, two untapped Islands.

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From zero to Top Deck Hero: Lessons Learned

Hello everyone!

My name is Mike. I have been playing magic on and off again since 1995. Ever since M10 came out I have been playing on a regular basis. I have to admit this is not the same game it once was for me. Back in the day it was throw together some cards and some lands and have some fun. Even a few years back My best friend and I had just got back into magic and were thinking we had a great grip on the game because we knew a few combos here and there. Something changed over the last couple of years however. We discovered the massive amount of magic resources on the internet.

Now we are on a “quest “ to become better magic players. We have both picked formats that we want to improve on and we are concentrating on them. His are standard and commander. (I know that commander is not a competitive form of magic but meh). For myself I picked standard and draft. I have decided to talk about at least my side of our quest here. Why you might ask? Well the answer is simple people learn from mistakes. Please learn from mine so you don’t make your own. Read the rest of this entry

Taking a stab at GP Providence

Hey folks. I have returned from GP Providence with some bad news. I am a total scrub. Haha, just kidding. But no seriously, going to GP Providence was quite the experience and I thought I would share what I learned from my experiences at the event. Especially what some of you should remember to do when you leave to go to a large scale tournament. Read the rest of this entry

Into the Arena: New Phyrexia Prerelease

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Thran Utopia #9: Of ducks and swans

Hello there! Today I’d like to pay some attention to a few of my decks that underwent a few changes, decks that demand changes, and even some decks that turned out to be pretty awesome. That’s the beauty (or perhaps pitfall) of physical experience with a deck – you never know how your baby will blossom. Today is about a few ugly ducks, and a few decks that turned out to be beautiful swans, and everything in between. Five decks – let’s sort the duck from the swans! Read the rest of this entry

Red Cast Wins #2 Got Burn?

Red Cast Wins #2 Got Burn?

The group takes a look at the new Event Decks and their thoughts on the cards in each. We talk a bit about going rogue and have some laughs at the reactions people have to some rogue tactics.

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You’re a Designer, Harry! #8 – Go for the Gold (or Hybrid)

Hola, world-weavers! Last time, we talked about how we tweaked the design skeleton yet again. And we’re probably about to do it again. Does it seem like we just keep shuffling things around in a little rut in this grand scheme of a design process? That’s not how I see it. I imagine these articles I write to be like me, as the lead designer of the four-color set, holding a design meeting every week to discuss the set. However, members of the design team attending these meetings are in a constant flux! It’s a different number of people present at every meeting, which means some things don’t come into light until later when “Designer X” comes out and makes an observation that changes everything (not really everything)! Then we (gladly) take a step back to focus on a vital part of the set or go back to the drawing board completely.

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The Commander’s Chair – Tap that Core

One of the most enjoyable Archetypes to play and to build for Commander is a Themed Deck. Themed decks are based around a specific card or mechanic. They are fun to build because they care more about playing with style than winning. There is a card out there that I absolutely love, but I do not play nearly enough;

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You’re a Designer, Harry! #7 – Fixing and Fixing

Welcome to another installment of You’re a Designer, Harry! Last week, we reassembled the design skeleton because there were some corrections made that were relevant to the set’s design. This week… we’re once again reassembling the design skeleton! Yes, that’s right, there are yet more changes to be made as we continually discuss and learn about issues pertaining to how to go about designing a four-color set. We’ll also talk about the implications of mana-fixing for a “four colors matters” set. But before we go any further…

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