MAGISCOPES, Part II: The Art Of Grubwology

I knew that you’d read this article! That’s because I am tapped into the mystic art of Grubwology – the science of determining personalities and futures according to what sort of player you are.* For those of you who don’t follow me regularly (but why would you click on anything with "Part II" in the…

I knew that you’d read this article! That’s because I am tapped into the mystic art of Grubwology – the science of determining personalities and futures according to what sort of player you are.* For those of you who don’t follow me regularly (but why would you click on anything with "Part II" in the title if you hadn’t read Part I?), last week I featured the first six Grubwologic signs and gave their readings. This week, I shall finish that endeavor. So, without further ado, here is the second half of the Grubwologic Zodiac:

Leo – Astrology: Lion; Grubwology: Vampiric Lion

Personality – You are a pro player. You win every game you play, and playing for fun is a joke in your playtest group. You spend more time driving to PTQs than playing in them, but when you are playing, you’re always winning. You have pro points in the double digits. If you are matched against an opponent under the age of eighteen, you scoff and beat the snot out of them. You’re allowed to be overconfident – you’re just that good. You forgot to pay echo on your Albino Troll? It makes no difference. All you need to do is apply a little concentration, and the game is yours. As for trading? That’s a close second to casual play amongst you and your groupies. You have every card you could possibly need from the winnings from Pro Tours. The part of your collection you’re most proud of: Your sheet of Rishadan Ports in your binder, filled front and back, with a foil one in the middle of each page. Of course it’s not in there to trade, you grubby kid! It’s just there to flaunt my skill.

This week – You will attend a PTQ. You will, of course, win. While you’re trying to decide what cards to buy with your fantastic winnings, a sneaky Ponza player will steal your binder and flatten your tires. It doesn’t matter how much skill you have: If you turn your back on a Ponza player, you will pay.

Advice – This week, avoid all Sagittarius. Your best friend this week is Taurus.**

Virgo – Astrology: Virgin; Grubwology: Defiant Hero

Personality – You are a Rebel player. You detest casting spells, and if you had your way, the only spell you would cast in the course of a game would be Ramosian Sergeant. You love card advantage ad nauseum, and because of this, you miss the true beauty of rebels: Surprise. You prefer an extremely boring route to victory, dealing with searching for rebels and swarming your opponent. Fun? That’s merely a fairy tale told to newbies when you try to make them start playing. You’re dead set on winning, even it if means playing a deck more boring than Bargain. However, unlike Bargain players, you’re very versatile. You can compete in MBC, Standard, and even Draft. You’ve probably also got yourself a competitive place in post-Artifacts Cycle Type II. However, even then, no one will even remember your name after playing "just another Rebel Deck."

This week – You’ll be invited to play in a casual game. There will be five players, and each player will play with one color. Also, each player will be able to ban one card from one player’s deck. After you ban Massacre from the black deck, you will expect to win easily. After playing flawlessly and with two Glorious Anthems, you will have knocked out three opponents, and you will be about to demolish the black player (who will only have played a Blood Pet the whole game, along with a Swamp each turn). You will pass the turn to him after demolishing the green player, and he will cast Plague Wind. You will have nightmares for the remainder of the week, and you will never again attend a casual meeting of Magic players.

Advice – This week, avoid all Libra. Your best friend this week is Aquarius.

Libra – Astrology: Scales; Grubwology: Balance

Personality – You are a casual multiplayer. You love the fun of the game. You wouldn’t pick up a Replenish deck if you were paid, and, most likely, you wouldn’t know how to use it even if you did. You enjoy playing games with more than two opponents, and if you tried to play your deck against one player, you’d be blown out of the water. You fear commitment and challenge. You know that you’re not skilled enough to win any tournaments, so you pretend that you’re just in it for the "fun" of the game. However, you lay awake at night, dreaming of winning a tournament, or at least making top eight. You’ll never get there, so you let yourself just have fun playing. During the day, you’re fine about your lack of skill. It’s only at night, in the depths of your soul, that you wish you were better. On the plus side, you’re liked by all Magic players, and many players wish that they had "groups" like you do. You are content with the fact that you don’t have too much of a driving compulsion to win (during the day), and you’ll stay that way to the day you quit.

This week – As usual, you’ll engage in your weekly casual play. You’ll bring your newest creation: Prophecy.dec, featuring all the Winds, Avatars, and Legendary Spellshapers. When you come from behind to defeat all seven of your opponents, you won’t be able to help but beam as you imagine being handed an invitation to the Pro Tour.

Advice – This week, avoid all Leo. Your best friend this week is Gemini

Scorpio – Astrology: Scorpion; Grubwology: Phyrexian Walker

Personality – You are an Extended player. You enjoy having the power of the Immortals on your side. "The Immortals," of course, refers to the expansive selection of cards available in Extended. You are claustrophobic – that is, you can’t handle the controlled card pool of Standard. You might look into a window of a Standard tournament and see people playing with cards that would be considered awful in Extended, and you shudder. However, there’s something about Standard players that makes you envy them more than anyone else in the world: Dark Ritual. It’s so simple, in Standard-talk, to discuss the possibility of "first turn, Ritual, Negator," and somesuch. However, in Extended, that kind of talk is harshly monitored and controlled. Nevertheless, your mastery over a huge card pool (even without Dark Ritual and Mana Vault) gives you an impressive quality of card management.

This week – You’ll get together with some friends to play. As a group, you’ll decide that the banned and restricted list is out the window. So, you’ll put Dark Rituals and Mana Vaults into your Necro deck. And then, the addiction will begin. You’ll re-realize the power that was stricken from you by the DCI. You will want to become a Standard player, but when you see that you’ll have to put your decks in your binder, you won’t have the heart. But, you won’t be able to give up Dark Rituals. What will eventually happen is that you’ll drift in a state of confusion, never knowing whether you’re coming or going.

Advice – This week, avoid all Pisces. Your best friend this week is Cancer.

Sagittarius – Astrology: Archer; Grubwology: Morphling

Personality – You are a Permission player. You crave the power to control your opponent’s spells. You love being able to grant or deny permission to cast spells. You have carefully monitored your own growth over the past few sets. You were immense when Mana Leak and Forbid were in the environment, but the rotation of the Rath Cycle left you bereft of the will to counter. But now, oh now, you are powerful once again! These days, you can tap out and STILL counter important spells! Yes, your power is great, and your strongest weapon is Morphling. But, in all of your glory, you have failed to realize that Morphling is going to fade away. And so is Masticore. And Thieving Magpie. And Faerie Conclave. After the rotation, you don’t realize that you will be once again powerless. You are caught up in your power now, and you will abuse it to the ends of its days.

This week – You will attend a tournament. You will play Bargain, Replenish, and Ponza. When the fourth round comes up, you are so hyped up on power that you will feel as a god. Your fourth round will be Replenish, and you will scoff at the easy win. You will win the first game, and the second game will see a Quash in your hand. You will sadistically want to Quash your opponent’s Replenish, so you will wait, with your opponent at four life and you controlling an active Masticore. You will become so haughty that you will have only one counter in hand when your opponent is holding Replenish and Counterspell with a graveyard full of enchantments. You will fall from your pedestal and lose the game, as well as the subsequent one. Your next matches will be Stampy, Rebels, Stampy, WW.

Advice – This week, avoid all Aries. Your best friend this week is Scorpio.

Capricorn – Astrology: Goat; Grubwology: Jaguar

Personality – You are a Type II player. You enjoy the ever-changing environment, and you are looking forward to Invasion. You desperately try to stay on top of the newest ways to combat Replenish, as well as the spoilers and information about the new set about to be released. At this point, you’re saving up your money in order to buy the boxes of Invasion that you’ll need to compete. But competition is all that matters. Even if it means spending your personal savings, you must buy three boxes of Invasion in order to "stay on top of things." However, despite your driving force, you still believe that Magic is a game to enjoy, and that is admired by many.

This week – You will draft. You will very luckily pick the following cards: Replenish, Counterspell, Morphling, Phyrexian Negator, Rishadan Port, Dust Bowl, Lin-Sivvi, and Masticore, as well as a bunch of cards of varying commonality. When you sit down to build your deck, you will realize that you have a pile, and you will drop from the tournament and save yourself the trouble of losing. When asked if you’ll trade your new Port, you will growl and turn away, clutching the land to your chest like a wild beast guards its last morsel of food.

Advice – This week, avoid all Aquarius. Your best friend this week is Pisces.

Well, there it is. The final six signs of the Grubwologic Zodiac. I hope that I’ve succeeded in opening your eyes to the wide world of Grubwology. Until next week!

Daniel Crane
[email protected]

* – There’s been a bit of confusion about this. Your Grubwologic sign is based on what kind of PLAYER you are, not when you’re born. Be aware of this.

** – He may have stolen your binder, but there’s only one type of player that can match you in Magical deftness, and birds of a feather flock together.