A new card I almost overlooked joins the super small list of cards that start with X, and in another color that needed one. Now only white and red are forced to splash for X cards or use [card]Xanthic Statue[/card]!
Xenograft joinns the ranks of [card]Xanthic Statue[/card], [card]Xantid Swarm[/card], [card]Xathrid Demon[/card], [card]Xenic Poltergeist[/card], [card]Xiahou Dun, the One-Eyed[/card], [card]Xira Arien[/card], and [card]Xun Yu, Wei Advisor[/card] as all of the Magic cards to ever begin with the letter X.
Almost makes you want to make a mono-black theme deck where every card starts with the letter X....well, until you find out how much Xiahou Dun costs!
Wow am I tired! My new job has me up at 4:30 am, I rarely get to nap during the day, even though I get of of work at 2:30 because the kids are always up to something and I just plain old never get anything done around the house unless I go to bed far too late.
Everyone around the web is talking all Innistrad, all the time, but frankly due to my schedule I don't have a whole lot to say about it. The cards have great flavor and several are quite fun, but I have never been much of a Tribal fan, so I'm looking to whip back out the [card]Extinction[/card] and [card]An-zerrin Ruins[/card].
Not too long ago, when I knew I was going to have this much trouble forming coherant thoughts, I asked on my Twitter feed (@shoe_wooberg) the following:"Writing articles about magic is hard when you barely have time to PLAY magic! Any variant format article topics anyone wants to hear about?"
The only reply was from a friend of the site who writes over on Muse Vessel:
@Shoe_WOOBERG Have you played 15 Card Highlander? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
I have, indeed, played 15 Card Highlander. but it was quite some time ago when Ravnica was in standard. My thoughts I remember on the format:
- Any kind of card that mills a ton of cards quickly is BROKEN.
- Ignoring the "Standard legal cards only" portion of the rules breaks the format.
- Getting there with combat damage is a must, and usually very difficult considering the small number of cards you have to work with.
- Seems like one really great strategy would be a somewhat efficient beater with a bunch of awesome removal would be the best way to go with a deck.
Here is my little brew, using the latest standard card pool.
[card]Red Sun's Zenith[/card] seems stupid good because it is a finisher and removal and keeps you from running out of draws/gas. Basically the whole point of the deck is to push through a [card]Stromkirk Noble[/card] with burn as removal/backup, or switch to long-game mode with [card]Inferno Titan[/card]. I am out of practice with this format, so I have no idea if this is good or not, but it is what I would try first. Maybe I will see if I can get my playgroup to toss something together and get some results for you next week.
Thats all the time I have for today, so until next time...
Use YOUR shoes as counters!
This week, we take another go at the Hidden Gems series, where I highlight an awesome resource for Magic, Variant Formats, or just casual play in general. Today, My special guest is Andy...AKA Ghooosts! (on Magic forums), who is the brain behind commandercast.com
Fot those of you who don't know. EDH/Commander is the most popular Magic variant format these days. Commandercast is a podcast devoted to that format exclusively. Pretty much the first (and possibly the only) podcast devoted to the format alone, these guys put out some great material. This week also marks the launch of thier official website, formerly being a blogspot site.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Andy, and I'm generally not very interesting, but I do run a website called CommanderCast.
When did you start playing Magic?
I started playing back in elementary school when The Dark was the newest set, as far as I knew. I started playing it because the cards looked really cool, but didn't play too much until Tempest block. I've played on and off since.
What Formats do you play, other than EDH/Commander?
My favorite Magic format is Type 4. Rainbow Stairwell, Cube drafting, Big Box, and good old casual 60x4s are all actually formats I prefer over Commander, but are less popular locally so I don't get to play them as much.
What is your favorite type of deck to play?
I like to play relatively interactive games, but beyond that I play a lot of different decks and can't really say I lean in one particular direction. My favourite decks of all time are U/G Quiet Roar, Masques-era Ponza and U/B Reanimator pre-Mystical Tutor banning. Though it was around when I wasn't playing, I also consider the Time Spiral/Lorwyn-era RDW deck a beautiful design. I like red decks that do more than throw burn at opponents until they run out of cards or win. My favourite card is Magus of the Moon.
Tell us a little bit about CommanderCast.com!
CommanderCast is exclusively about Commander/EDH. It started out as a podcast, but eventually we branched into videos and articles as well. The goal of the site is to provide Commander players with a focused resource, and provide members of the Commander community a sounding board they might not have otherwise. I also try very hard to ensure other quality websites about Commander get some shine on CommanderCast by frequently linking to them.
What made you decide to start CommanderCast?
One specific weekend I had nothing to do and decided to record a podcast on a whim while listening to an excellent show called Radiolab. That's literally how it happened. I keep doing it because people are very supportive and contribute their time, work and thoughts in the form of guest hosting, feedback, articles, behind-the-scenes work and videos. My initial plan was actually to eventually fade into the background and focus on the technical side of everything, but Donovan and Adam convinced me otherwise.
How large is the CommanderCast team? Care to give a shout out to your fellow "staff" members?
It's way too big now, and it'd be selling everyone short to try and summarize the wonderful work they do in a small answer. There's more than fifteen people working on CommanderCast in various capacities currently. Here is a link to the staff page.
What's in store for the future of CommanderCast? Any spoilers for your adoring fans?
I have no idea beyond the next few weeks. I think it's safe to say further expansion is on the horizon since people continue to generously contribute their work to the website. I'd like to think CommanderCast is approaching a point where it will be self-perpetuating and run regardless of whether I still have any interest in it or not.
Anything else you'd like to add?
Please check out the websites in our Friends section, they're producing very good work and you're really missing out if you don't read them.
They do indeed, I personally read Muse Vessel on a daily basis and I hear that Shoe guy writes some good stuff over at WOOBERG!
That's all the time I have for today, so until next time...
Use YOUR shoes as counters!
Greetings WOOBERG readers. Sorry for the delay in articles this week. My new job has kept me quite busy with server outages and Blackberry problems, as well as my son's first day of Kindergarten and my folks coming into town from halfway across the nation!
Today I want to do a little something different. Here and there, a website shows up in the Magic community that offers something completely different and extremely useful to Magic players. Hidden Gems is staged to be my little way of helping guys like me just trying to make an awesome Magic website and to help get their names out to the general MTG gaming populous
My first victi...err feature is on deckbox.org. Deckbox offers something that no site has done well (in my humble opinion) thusfar; Created an inventory system for decks and collections that is stored online. I'd love to tell you more, but instead I will defer to the creator of the site Sebastian Zaha
So Sebastian, introduce yourself to the minio...err readers!
My name is Sebastian Zaha, I'm a web programmer currently living in Vienna, Austria. I've been searching for an online solution to inventory my cards and create decks that i can link to friends, and I did not find one, so... I've made deckbox.org.
When did you start playing Magic?
I've started playing Magic in december 2008, during the Lorwyn / Shadowmoor block, with Laura, my girlfriend and a couple of other friends. We got the Elves vs Goblins and Jace vs Chandra duel decks, and we loved it. Slowly we joined the local Magic community, and participated in some small tournaments (We were living in Cluj, Romania at that time).
What formats do you play primarily?
I played mostly standard in 2008-2010, and a little bit of Extended at the end (after they made extended smaller, I've been messing around with a [card]Doran,[/card] deck). In this last year after moving to Austria, we had little time for Magic so we only played the occasional friendly EDH match.
What is your playstyle? Favorite deck?
As I started Magic with a goblin prebuilt deck, I kind of stuck to aggro style decks, tried some goblins in M10 too. The green and black colors also really appealed to me, with their chaos, destruction and powerful creatures, so Jund was a logical step to take. As controversially overpowered as it was, I really enjoyed it [the deck].
Most of our readers have probably already clicked the link to check out the site, but -Shameless Plug- give them a little mini tour. Let 'em know what deckbox.org aims to accomplish.
Deckbox is a website which aims to facilitate the creation of card inventories, tradelists, wishlists and decks. It allows easy data entry with autocompleted dynamic inputs, quick filtering and sorting, and easy visualization of collections. Since people have tradelists and wishlists on the website, trading is also made easier, cards can be passed between people with a few button clicks.
What compelled you to start deckbox?
Laura and I have been working for a "web 2.0" company for a while, and we had strong opinions about how web applications should work, and confidence in the fact that a web solution is vastly superior to a desktop / offline one. I wanted to be able to just paste a link representing my wishlist to my friends, and I wanted them to see it as it is, up to date every time they accessed it. I wanted to convince my friends to join the website as well, so that when I look at their profile page, the website could instantly show me what cards I need from the cards they have for trade. Then we would be able to create a trade on the website, modify it dynamically until we both agreed and then with the click of a button, to update our tradelist / wishlist automatically. All these things would be possible with a web application, and we were eager to implement them.
I completely agree, I have already begun the arduous task of entering all of the cards in my (shamefully massive) collection. I have several EDH decks entered and am eventually going to get my trade binder entered as well. I also see that Deckbox has been working on doing some intigration with social media websites as of late...any comments on that?
We implemented a system which allows other websites to have card tooltips, by only including a piece of code from deckbox. It has been a great success, many sites taking advantage of this script, most notably the official EDH forum on http://mtgcommander.net . More information about how people can use this can be found on the help page: http://deckbox.org/help/tooltips.
In an effort to give credit where credit is due, is there a deckbox.org team or just you in a lonesome shack in the wilderness with nothing but a hatchet, a fifth of vodka and a T1 internet connection?
I have started the website by myself, doing whatever was needed, from system administration, programming, designing, and public relations. Laura, my girlfriend, joined me after deckbox had the basic features fleshed out, and she implemented the community and events sections, Facebook integrations, comments on decks and other cool things.
Being a lover of variant formats and all, I noticed that deckbox.org has all of the Archenemy Schemes and Planechase Planes (AWESOME!) but lacks the Vanguard cards (SAD PANDA!). Is there any plans to add Vanguard cards to deckbox? Does deckbox import from Gatherer or is it entierly seperate? If gatherer goes down wll deckbox?
We try to keep the card database always up to date, and the small things missing I hope to address as soon as possible. The database is our own, but the data in it was imported from the official magic resource - gatherer.wizards.com. If they have the cards listed, we have them too. For those cases where they do not, we will try to get the information from mtgcards.info or other sources.
Being that is's spoiler season, do you have any spoilers of future of deckbox.org?
We're not ready to announce things just yet, but we have a host of cool features planned, in various stages of implementation. Expect an exciting newsletter at the beginning of next month.
Thanks Sebastian, I know I speak for many MTG players (and WOW/40K CCG as well!) when I say that deckbox.org is a fantastic resource for players!
That's all the time we have this week, tune in next week when we will talk about stuff AND things. Until Next time:
Use YOUR shoes as counters!
Moderator of WOOBERG.net, the Encyclopedia of Magic Variant formats, Shoe has been playing MTG since mid to late 1994, He acquired the nickname ‘Shoe’ through a stupid joke made during a MTG game about the Chimpokomon episode of South Park. He loves MTG and gaming in general and hopes to work designing games one day. He plays mostly with his 6 year old daughter these days, but multi-player, and weird formats are his preference.