Sorceries In Seattle

This weekend, Seattle plays host to a StarCityGames.com Open Weekend like no other. Join @SCGLive on-site or follow the online coverage!

Tomorrow, the StarCityGames.com Open Series makes its way to Seattle once again!

Last year, we saw Jeremy Lochridge triumph in the Standard portion with Jund, while Kyle Boddy won the Legacy with New Horizons. How the times change—now it’s U/W Caw-Blade assuming the mantle of Standard oppressor, and the Jund deck from our Cincinnati Standard Open is suddenly an internet darling.

Legacy has experienced an impressive shift as well. Blue control decks were shut out of the Top 8 during last year’s Seattle Legacy Open, but they’ve become a major influence on the format this season. Watching Legacy develop has become a personal joy for me, as every single tournament sees someone bring something new and exciting and perform well with it. The format is so open (no pun…yeah, you got me) and rewards tight play and innovation more than most. The phrase “on any given Sunday” seems to manifest itself quite physically during every Open weekend.

Seattle happens to be one of my favorite cities in the United States, and places highly on my list of acceptable places to live. While its proximity to Wizards of the Coast and its thriving (and talented) Magic community are certainly reasonable incentives, I’m a simple man. I like the crisp air, the bustling urban center, the excellent public transportation, and the fine people.

I also like seafood.

If you’ve never been, the Pike Place market is a must-see. It’s a public farmers’ market overlooking Elliott Bay and a combination of curiosity and cornerstore. There’s an incredibly diverse assembly of shops and restaurants, and plenty of great food to be found. This is where you’ll want to pick up a little something to take back home, for those who enjoy bringing back gifts. You’ll also get a chance to check out where a lot of Seattle’s fish start their day before winding up on plates, which is cool, and the Market is very close to the first Starbucks.

Yes, that is the only thing special about it. However, the market is at its best earlier in the day, so knowing a spot to get a good cup of coffee is valuable! Starbucks franchises litter the city—I’ve theorized that you could throw a rock from one to the next visible one and successfully traverse the city, stopping at each one only once.

Enough about Seattle. It’s sweet, you’ll have fun, etc. The tournament itself will be at the Lynnwood Convention Center, a reasonable hop north of Seattle itself and in the nearby city for which the convention center is named. Rooms 2D-E will house our events, and that’s where the Magic happens. When the Magic ends, the official hotel for the venue is the Best Western Alderwood at 19332 36th Avenue West. You can contact them for questions or reservations at (425) 776-7600.

Joining us are two Magic illustrators, and each will have their own booth set up for signings and to sell prints and originals. Franz Vohwinkel brought you the illustrations for favorites like the Shards of Alara Oblivion Ring, Glacial Fortress, and Myr Battlesphere, in addition to other modern hits. Pete Venters has a bit more old school in his repertoire, including Ensnaring Bridge, Flametongue Kavu, Phyrexian Dreadnought and a major crowd-pleaser—Survival of the Fittest.

We’ll be hosting an alterist this weekend as well: MJ Scott, better known to many of you as @moxymtg. She’s an excellent alterist, and you can view some of her work at www.moxymtg.com, which displays her alters in addition to blog content. MJ is also a Vorthos contributor for GatheringMagic.com, where she sounds off about the finer (and stranger) things in Magic. If you’d like to arrange a special commission with her at the event or in the future, go ahead and shoot her a message: [email protected].

@SCGLive resumes this weekend as well! We’re continuing to implement broadcasting and technical advances, and you’ll see the true fruits of our labors soon enough. Every weekend has brought a new improvement to our process, and I expect this weekend to represent a fine chapter in our ongoing mission to explore strange new worlds to bring you the best live Magic coverage anywhere. Gavin Verhey will be joined in the booth by debut commentator, Player of the Year Brad Nelson! You’ll be able to follow them from Round 1 of Standard all the way to the Legacy finals with the hashtag #SCGSea on Twitter.

In addition to tournament coverage, Brad will be able to discuss the experience of working on his biography with Rich Hagon: Grinder: The Story of Brad Nelson, which will be released on Monday. I’m very much hoping that a few Wizards employees from the not-too-distant land of Renton, WA will make the trek this weekend and step into the booth, offering you guys some new, behind the scenes insight into the game we know and love.

-Glenn Jones

Coverage Content Manager