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Subject: The Long View of Magic the Gathering rss

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G. Gambill
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In this episode of The Long View, special guest
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and I discuss the classic collectible card game, Magic: The Gathering In our conversation we discuss the factors that contribute to the longevity of this game, recent innovations, stereotypes and assumptions about the game and its fans, and if there are, in the end, any differences at all between ccg players and boardgamers. Thanks to www.2d6 for hosting The Long View, and thanks as well to www.gamesurplus.com for their continued support of the show. The Long View is a proud member of The Dice Tower network. Thanks also, as always, to YOU for listening!

The episode can be found at http://www.2d6.org/2012/11/the-long-view-magic-the-gathering..., here in the bgg podcast directory, or subscribe through iTunes. You can also join The Long View guild for links to episodes and news.
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fightcitymayor
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"This is a really weird game, and you’ll find that most people will not want to play this."
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This isn't a bad podcast for Magic beginners, especially if you're coming from a boardgaming point-of-view.

It's interesting how much angst certain people approach Magic with. How scared people are that there is this monolithic subculture standing in the way of their enjoyment.

I'm also surprised that the idea of Duel Decks wasn't brought up more. It's a far better idea for beginners than the "run to eBay and buy 1,000 random cards that probably won't gel together very well at all." It involves no deck-building, or booster-drafting, or background whatsoever, and they are tuned to go against each other. Better to just learn the game first, then worry about drafting & combos & mana-curve later on.



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Pete Lane
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fightcitymayor wrote:
This isn't a bad podcast for Magic beginners, especially if you're coming from a boardgaming point-of-view.

It's interesting how much angst certain people approach Magic with. How scared people are that there is this monolithic subculture standing in the way of their enjoyment.

I'm also surprised that the idea of Duel Decks wasn't brought up more. It's a far better idea for beginners than the "run to eBay and buy 1,000 random cards that probably won't gel together very well at all." It involves no deck-building, or booster-drafting, or background whatsoever, and they are tuned to go against each other. Better to just learn the game first, then worry about drafting & combos & mana-curve later on.


Well said. I haven't been able to listen to the PC from work, but I plan to tonight. Otherwise I agree with the above, that Duel Decks and Intro Packs are a great gateway into the game.
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Steve Wagner
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I listened to this episode and this was my first time listening to this podcast.

First, I'd like to say that for my first listen, this was a very good podcast. I liked that you gave your reasons why you didn't like playing at the beginning and your feelings during the plays.

I liked that the Limited Resources Podcast was brought up. Not only is that probably the best Magic podcast, but it may be the best podcast I've ever listened to. The only other podcast that may compete with that in my opinion is The Dice Tower, which is fantastic.

Next, I want to add some more Magic information for beginners. I played close to the beginning, where it was simpler but the cards weren't as good. Now, the game is more complicated, but the cards are much better. This is a great time to play Magic, but it is best to learn either from a friend or play it on the Xbox, PC, or iPad. I highly recommend the video game versions, even for a player like me who has played a lot, they are very well done.

Also, there are 2 casual formats that didn't get mentioned in your show which are good for players who want to play casually.

First, is Pauper. In this format, you only play with commons (you can expand it to uncommons to, if you like.) This helps players less worried about the expense of playing and more about the skill in building and playing decks.

Second, is Commander. In this, you choose a legendary creature who is your Commander. See this link for more details on it. The nice thing about Commander is that it can be modified for a group. A group doesn't like a card, then it can be banned in that group. Plus, it's easier to build a Commander deck, because you can only have 1 of each card in a deck.
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Josh Morgan
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Cube is probably my most favorite format. There are some pretty great pauper cube lists that are pretty great. The /r/mtgcube subreddit has some pretty great info and people to answer any of your questions. Cube is drafting format where someone hand selects what cards are included. The beauty is that it can be as simple or complex as you want. I would suggest that someone looking to get In to cube read up on te format a bit and look at some card lists to get a feel for the possibilities. Some of the less expensive cube lists can be had for $75 or less and would provide tons of replayability.

All of that said, cube is probably best for those with some understanding of the game and not a brand new player. However it is very rewarding and something I highly recommend.
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Steve Wagner
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I recommend cube also, but it definitely isn't best for beginners, like you said. Limited is probably not best for beginners either.

The best way to learn is to have someone teach you and build your first deck for you. Duels of the Planeswalkers works perfect for this, although it isn't perfect, because it skips over some of the rules.
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Tommy Occhipinti
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SVan wrote:
I recommend cube also, but it definitely isn't best for beginners, like you said. Limited is probably not best for beginners either.

The best way to learn is to have someone teach you and build your first deck for you. Duels of the Planeswalkers works perfect for this, although it isn't perfect, because it skips over some of the rules.


I think the difficulty of starting to play limited is often overstated. Build 6 or so decks out of the cube you want to draft and play them with someone. Make sure they get to the point where they are understanding the rules, and start saying things like "Man, this card is awesome!" and "is this card really any good?" With a willing player, this should not take long.

Once you've done this, they're ready to start drafting. It of course helps if you have a very focused cube with a small number of keywords, but it is do-oable more generally. Help them build their decks, let them talk about picks, let them take back their mistakes they see immediately, don't take back yours, etc. It works best if you have multiple people learning at the same time, as they can play both against you (the experienced player) and the other new players. I've never had any problems, and everyone I have introduced this way is still interested in playing.
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Thanks, folks, for taking the time to listen to the podcast and for posting such insightful thoughts on MtG from a boardgaming point of view. Reading these posts, I'm realizing how much I left out of the discussion and all the additional points that can be made about MtG.

The first few posts here are exactly right about Wizards' preconstructed decks--a very affordable and approachable way to get into the game. I hope I conveyed the point in the podcast that buying hundreds of assorted cards on ebay is NOT a good approach, and that I likely steered Geof away from enjoyment of the game by having him do this. As I tried to convey on the podcast, this will probably lead to confusion and frustration.

As for cube-drafting, it's certainly true that the accessibility of this format depends entirely on the cube (set of pre-selected cards used in a draft) itself. There is an excellent episode of Limited Resources that discusses a ton of casual limited formats (some of which I mentioned on The Long View)--including Solomon, Pack Wars/Mini Masters, and so forth. It's Episode 136 and is available here:

http://www.mtgcast.com/mtgcast-podcast-shows/active-podcast-...

My main goal (and I think Geof's too) is to spark just this type of discussion among boardgamers, and (as one of the posters above points out) to encourage gamers to think of MtG as part of the gaming hobby that they can experiment with and enjoy. That's how I look at it, personally. I don't think of myself as a MtG player, but as a gamer who happens to enjoy MtG along with a lot of other styles of games. Despite the many omissions outlined here, I hope I was able to convey that point at least and encourage some discussion about one of my favorite card games.
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