This week’s column was prompted by Rizzo’s telling me to put or shut up. More importantly, it has to deal with several ups and downs that have affected me as a Magic player and my community as a whole.
To begin with, I must explain what I mean by a "Decipher Counter," since that term will pop up throughout the article. It’s a term coined by a good friend, Jeremy Saint, that refers to the fact that in Star Wars, cards are not banned; rather, cards are created to invalidate certain strategies. Being a Blue player at heart, he had a heart attack when he saw they had printed Scragnoth. He called it the most broken, stupid, decipher-counter ever seen. 🙂
Anyway, this whole column will be split into sections containing two paragraphs, one about bad stuff (the Agony) and the other about good stuff (the Ecstasy), all of which relate to my situation right now as a Magic player.
The Agony: One of the best Magic stores in Ottawa, the Pagan Playground, closed down very suddenly last Monday. It had been in business for three years, but had to move last September from its central, downtown location to a more isolated location in lower town. This hindered its sales, but the loyal gamers that we are kept going to the new place. Unfortunately, the store was not making enough money to pay its bills, so it had to close. This is all bad for our community, since Magic is already a small niche, but…
The Ecstasy: …we all pulled together as a Magic community. We all emailed each other and figured out alternatives to go to. We contacted local stores to find out if they would sponsor Friday Night Magic and accommodate the group of barbarians that we are. So far, we are in limbo, but we have found a place to go.
The Agony: Long, drawn-out Sealed deck reports, especially those punctuated with cheesy song lyrics at their conclusion. I think if anyone in the Magic community is a Decipher Counter to me, Sean McKeown must be it. Not to disparage him. He knows probably more about Sealed construction than I do, but his articles tend to carry me to a high (absorbing all the good info) only to be thrown into a deep pit, screaming in terror (reading lyrics by the Goo-Goo Dolls or Sarah McClunker). It’s often too much for this fragile heart to take.
The Ecstasy: Well-written, to-the-point articles. There seem to be fewer and fewer of these around, but Mike Mason recent column on the Extended bannings was quite good, though I think he underestimates the power of Survival of the Fittest. The fact is, once it comes out, you either have to remove it, quickly, or you will find yourself overwhelmed by your opponent’s resources – because he is tutoring every turn, and you’re not.
The Agony: Going through mid-terms with mountains of snow and ice so cataclysmically huge that I could walk straight out of my fourth-floor apartment window and walk DOWN a snowbank into the street below. Sure, I can peg my friends with ice balls – but hey, that’s only fun and games until someone loses an eye.
The Ecstasy: Escaping the frozen wastes by being allowed into the secret conclave that is the Star City Mailing List. At long last, I can witness up-front what the most brilliant minds of the Magic community are up to, while posting my own incendiary opinions and enduring some Decipher Counter articles. As someone on the list pointed out, they write so much there that their articles to the site are lacking at times. I think this list is a must for anyone who wants good tech or a good laugh. Too bad I am forbidden of talking about it.
The Agony: Knowing….naaaah, I can’t be this negative. The world will just have to spin on its axis for a moment.
The Ecstasy: Finding out Canadian Nationals is coming to town in four months. I am already taunting the Star City list so they can send someone down to shut me up or share beers with me, whichever happens first. This is huge for us actually…In the past, Canadian Nationals has been held in Toronto, Toronto and, Toronto… Oh, and in Vancouver, I think. Now that the national Capital will have it, IT WILL NEVER LEAVE! BWAHAHAHAHAHHAH! FOOLS! LITTLE DID YOU SUSPECT OUR ORBITAL MIND CONTROL LASERS WILL FOREVER DOOM YOU TO HOLDING NATIONALS IN OTTAWA! THE POWER!
So that’s my brainstorm for this week.