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AuthorBennie Smith

Bennie Smith began playing Magic in 1994 and started writing about it shortly after. A Virginia State Champion, he enjoys few things better than winning at tournaments with home brews. Commander is one of those things. He loved the format so much he literally wrote the book on it: The Complete Commander.

Friday Night Magic – Part Two

Wow. I have to say I have been very pleased with the response to my last article. While a lot of it consisted of things like "Bennie, you’re an idiot– the foils you suggested are horrible," the main thing was that I struck a cord out there. People *do* care about the prize support for…

I’m Back! Regionals, Lame Ducks, And Prophecy

Apologies to those of you who’ve wondered where I’ve been; it seems life has gotten in the way of fun as usual. I recently started a new job and while I’m loving it, it has been keeping me insanely busy. Way too busy to play Magic. It’s also been mentally draining, which has interfered with…

The Cynical Approach To Choosing A Regionals Deck

Most people who know me would probably describe me as a generally happy-go-lucky, optimistic kind of guy. I tend to expect the best from people, and generally count on things working out for the best in the world around me. I wasn’t always like that; my childhood and teenage years weighed heavily on my psyche,…

Accelerated Decks: The New Type 2

Before I get into the meat of my article, there’s one more thing I wanted to add to the whole”Bad Cards” debate that’s been sparked recently about broken rares and unplayable rares. The DCI needs to do the right thing and emergency ban . There’s no question that the card is inherently broken, and spawns…

The Tragedy Of Bad Rares, Part Deux

I have to tell you, it’s been great getting the feedback that I’ve gotten in response to my last post. Sometimes when you’re writing, you get disillusioned because you feel like you’re shouting into a great void, and no one listens. Reminds me of the line from the original Alien movie advertisements (gosh is that…

The Tragedy Of Bad Rares (Or, Look At Me, I’m R&D!)

Bad Rares. It’s part of Magic, right? Sure it is, always has been. But should it be? I can remember a while ago, someone posted an article that talked about”skill-testing cards.” I think they were talking about in a Limited format, and how it takes some skill to see how good certain cards are; for…

Phyrexian Scriptures: The Last Ritual…

About half-way through the Extended season, the Necro- deck emerged and caused quite a shift in the environment, as you may know. This reputed unstoppable combo deck and its ilk led to the banning of and in the extended format, also as you may know. It is my assumption that this banning, while effective, was…

Masques Block Constructed: Turns One And Two

The Pro Tour New York Qualifier season ended rather unceremoniously for me; my last shot at qualifying was waylaid by a family emergency and I couldn’t attend. So, I never got a shot at throwing Dancing Dead Things in front of the /Illusions juggernaut to see if my theories worked. On the plus side, my…

Nemesis And The Future Of Control Green

First off I need to ask you if you’ve seen the latest issue of Scrye, the one with the Dark Pokemon energy symbol on it. Have you read Omeed’s article on Type 2? In it, he mentions control green and ways the deck gets around . He talks about the obvious, dull and uncreative choice…

From The Ashes, Dancing Dead Things?

I wanted to give a quick thanks to all of you for the feedback I’ve gotten in response to my”Disney-freaking-World?!?” column the other week. Whether you came down on my side of the argument or in support of National’s home this year, it’s good to let Wizards know we care about the venue for this…

Blair Witch Green, Extended Style

After mixed success with green creature based control last weekend, I briefly thought about switching up and playing a more established deck. But then I thought again. This is my hometown! I couldn’t NOT play green here; people are going to be disappointed if I shuffle up an Oath or Necro deck. Besides, none of…

Disney-Freaking-World?

Alright, faithful readers… I have a question for you. Was my article posted at the top of today’s articles? If it wasn’t, I need a favor from you. Mailbomb our good editor with your outrage that you had to scan down the page to find my article. I mean, do you really want to have…

Kicking Off Extended At Star City

Last weekend kicked off the Extended season, with all eyes peeled on Grand Prix Seattle to glean the latest tech from the pro’s. However, some of us made the trek to Star City in Roanoke, Virginia to jump into Extended feet first, to try out decks first hand in the quest for the coveted Pro…

The Blossoming Of Green Card Advantage

Ahhhh. Now that’s the sound of satisfaction. It’s a good time to be playing green. Back in August, I wrote a column for Star City entitled”Why Green Lacks the Power Cards.” I basically stated my opinion that green was such a weak color because R&D consistently shafted green out of any cards that might generate…