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We're all just here for the deep Urza lore - Talking about Magic: The Gathering!

Balrog

(He/Him)
My kids are going through a phase where they're wanting to play Commander about every day so we've all been putting together new decks for laughs. Here's a few I've put together in a past few weeks:
Koma, Cosmos Serpent: I play a bunch of Equipment, Changelings, and miscellaneous Tribal (like Advocate of the Beat to put +1/+1 on the Changelings) stuff early on and shoot for ending the game by sacking Serpent tokens or Changelings as needed. It's been pretty fun to play.

Varina, Lich Queen: Zombie tribal with as much Mutate things as I could fit in. There's also a lot of graveyard shenanigans. This deck was more or less an excuse to put most of my Godzilla themed cards in one deck lol.
 

Mr Bean

Chief Detective
Saw this in my LGS discord tonight. Some codes for swanky new Arena sleeves - one for each Strixhaven class now that spoiler season has started.

RockJocks (Lorehold)

ArtClub (Prismari)

DebateDuelists (Silverquill)

SwampPunks (Witherbloom)

MathWhizzes (Quandrix)

The tonal shift is a little whiplash inducing, but I'm looking forward to a light goofy set after all the METAL.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I have to say, so far I'm digging the art direction in Strixhaven way more than I did in Kaldheim. A lot of what they showed in the preview stream yesterday was gorgeous.

On the flipside, I'm kind of annoyed that all of the uncommon Mystical Archive cards (16? 18? can't remember) are cards that have already been printed in Arena. When I think of "the most powerful and iconic spells from Magic's history", Strategic Planning and Whirlwind Denial aren't really on that list, y'know? I was hoping they'd have a comparable power level to the rare/mythic ones we've seen so far, especially when the other side of the coin has stuff like Lightning Bolt and Demonic Tutor. Oh well. At least the limited environment should be pretty unique!
 

JBear

Internet's foremost Bertolli cosplayer
(He/Him)
So am I the only one who isn't ready for Kaldheim to go away? I can't recall the last time a set was on the way out and I was still enjoying the draft experience this much. It might be my favourite draft format since coming back to the game (although Eldraine is close, probably owing in large part to the theme).

On the flipside, I'm kind of annoyed that all of the uncommon Mystical Archive cards (16? 18? can't remember) are cards that have already been printed in Arena.
If this is at least in part because it made for less of a lift to have the mystical archive cards available in Arena, then I'm all for it, because I only found out today that they're going to be included in Strixhaven drafts. I had assumed they'd be paper only, and I'm excited to be wrong.
 

SabreCat

Sabe, Inattentive Type
(he "Sabe" / she "Kali")
My wife and I are really excited for Strixhaven. Between Mystical Archives and the generally entertaining theme, it's the first time I've seriously considered buying a booster box. Not a collector box, that's a bit too rich for my blood, but maybe Set Boosters? So many options these days!

Do any Tyrants play Commander on Spelltable? I got really close to playing via the PlayEDH Discord, even had a couple of decks checked over, but then I saw that one of the mods wears a Pepe for an avatar and I backed out of there so fast I fell on my butt.
 

Bulgakov

Yes, that Russian author.
(He/Him)
So am I the only one who isn't ready for Kaldheim to go away?

I have loved Kaldheim and all the variety in archetypes/deck construction that was available in limited. I thought Foretell was a great mechanic, and I have been thrilled to see some commons like Sifwulf Packmate and Masked Vandal be powerhouses in the limited scene. Strixhaven looks fun too, but I would totally play this set for another month.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
My wife and I are really excited for Strixhaven. Between Mystical Archives and the generally entertaining theme, it's the first time I've seriously considered buying a booster box. Not a collector box, that's a bit too rich for my blood, but maybe Set Boosters? So many options these days!
If you want to buy a box of draft boosters, you and your wife could do some of the two-player draft formats like Winchester or Winston. Another friend of mine has been doing that with his wife for the past few sets and they've been having a great time.
 

Destil

DestilG
(he/him)
Staff member
Kaldheim is easily the most compex and nuanced draft format in an era defined by complex and nuanced formats.

But I’ve been pretty sick of every bomb in the set for a while, so not sad to see it go.

Strixhaven draft looks really fun, if a bit more limited.
 

shivam

commander damage
(he/hiim)
i loved kaldheim so much and i super don't love strix so far, adn would happily trade one for the other
 

Destil

DestilG
(he/him)
Staff member
Only done a sealed and 3 drafts, but I think this the first good end to end format in a while? Games aren't as miserable as pretty much every other modern set, and I'll take a slightly less complex draft if that's what it takes.

Learn letting you find answers, a lot of the good 'bombs' being sorceries/instants that don't hang around seems great, so far.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
I averaged around three wins in my Kaldheim drafts, but I've been getting my ass kicked in the Strixhaven drafts I've done (maybe ten or so?). First one went 6-3, then every other draft past that died at two wins. I think I had one three-win draft yesterday and one four-win draft today. I feel like every third opponent has an elder dragon while I keep opening unplayable rares like Ingenious Mastery.

I've had trouble finding enough playables when there are only five real archetypes -- it feels like you're really pushed to choose a color pair early, but if someone else at the table is also in your colors neither of you is gonna have a good time. Maybe I'm just really bad at reading signals when the pool is that much smaller.

However, I did have one of the greatest and most ridiculous things ever happen to me in a draft yesterday: Time Warp into Mizzix's Mastery to replay Time Warp, giving me three turns in a row to win the game. (That's the only time I've had crazy power like that in a draft so far.)
 

Destil

DestilG
(he/him)
Staff member
Only done a sealed and 3 drafts, but I think this the first good end to end format in a while? Games aren't as miserable as pretty much every other modern set, and I'll take a slightly less complex draft if that's what it takes.

Learn letting you find answers, a lot of the good 'bombs' being sorceries/instants that don't hang around seems great, so far.
And right after I post this I sit down across from Turn 2 Sparing Regiment. On the draw. Goddamn it.

EDIT: You know I actually have a containment breach in my board...

Not really the set's fault; didn't get a chance to learn it thanks to bad mana that game, anyway.
 
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SabreCat

Sabe, Inattentive Type
(he "Sabe" / she "Kali")
Played some sealed prerelease at home with my wife, which was a great time! Mystical Archives make these packs doubly fun to open.

One of my draft boosters contained two Mystical Archives, one of them an etched foil!

...both of them were Divine Gambit.
 

lincolnic

can stop, will stop
(he/him)
Someone actually played it against me in a draft the other day when I had three cards in hand.

They were all lands.
 

Destil

DestilG
(he/him)
Staff member
Yeah, I got hit by divine gambit with nothing good in hand already, too.

if you’re not playing aggro it may actually be a decent card here. Lot of games can come down to a long stall.
 

Tangent

(she/her)
It's a sign of just how little I get to play Magic that I'm coming here to post that I finally got to do some test drives of my ridiculous mini-cube project (link).

I forced myself to get the card list into a workable state (partly by just keeping on imposing constraints on myself), printed out paper proxies of everything (even though I have a majority of these cards already), and then stuck a bunch of stickers on them to help with sorting.

All the games so far have been in "theme deck mode" where the cube gets organized into 5 different 60-card singleton decks, but I've at least been happy to see players able to assemble a little value engine on the fly. Things are tuned for multiplayer, and I removed a lot of feels-bad stuff like counterspells (my kids hate to see their big game-winning creature get countered), and I probably don't have enough removal, so things have so far have been very durdly multiplayer games while everybody tries to build an overwhelming board state. Honestly that's what I hoped to see, because win or lose, everybody feels like they are getting to play.

No matter what, I'm happy enough with the results that I'm hoping I can slowly, slowly push my playgroup (where I'm the only person really serious about Magic) toward drafting once they've learned the cards a bit more.

This same playgroup overlaps heavily with my D&D table, and they seem at least mildly interested in trying out the new set, so I might try to do the same design exercise of building a four-person "mini-cube" based on AFR.
 

Tangent

(she/her)
It's been long enough that I don't think this counts as double-posting or anything...

I've been thinking a bit about trying to brew a commander deck with the restriction that every card besides basic lands needs to be double-sided, meld, split, or flip. I'd like to apply that restriction to the mana base as well, otherwise it feels like too fuzzy of a constraint. I think that means the only dual lands available are the pathways, and I'm not aware of any mana rocks that fit the constraints.

What I'm wondering is if it is better for such a deck to go WUBRG and use Esika (so that legendary creatures can be part of the color-fixing), or go mardu so that there's less color fixing needed. I need to be at least mardu because (1) I'm a mardu kind of girl, and (2) I want to include all six meld cards from EMN. Does anybody with a lot of EDH experience want to weigh in on which option is likely to be more practical?
 
Mardu opens up having Extus as the commander, if that would make a difference. 5-color would give you 10 duals, where as 3-color is only 3 duals. In just Mardu, there is one mana rock and 6 flip lands that make any color for fixing Link. That number goes to 11 for 5-color Link

How fast is your meta? My personal playgroup is fairly slow (games don't end until turns 8+ usually) and I could see something like this working. I feel like a deck with these types of restrictions could be hard to play in a very fast meta. It sounds super cool though! I might throw together a list to goldfish.

Edit: Thaumatic Compass and Treasure Map could also provide some fixing as well.
 
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Tangent

(she/her)
Well the "lucky" thing for me is that I don't really have a meta to worry about. My wife is the only other person in my circle who is really into Magic and has her own decks. Usually if I can scrape together a game it involves my kids, or friends who aren't big into Magic, so its usually just people grabbing from a stash of commander precons I keep around.

As a result of those constraints, I'd rather brew something that is under-powered than over-powered, so long as the result isn't a complete mess. I think you are on the right track that I need to goldfish both the 5-color and 3-color manabases to see what will/won't result in a functional deck.

I'd like to solve the "not having a meta" problem in the long run, but so far try to get my IRL friends into Magic hasn't worked that well, and being neurodivergent + trans makes breaking into the world of webcam play terrifying.
 

Büge

Arm Candy
(she/her)
You're not actually on cam for Spelltable, though, and I'm a member of a couple Discords that have regular webcam games, and they're all trans-friendly. Still, I understand your anxiety.
 

Tangent

(she/her)
Yeah, I’m on a discord I could probably use to find a game in a hurry if I tried. It’s mostly in that very ADHD space where even *wanting* to do a thing doesn’t mean you can make yourself able to do that thing.

Also: saw Shivam on Twitter talking about how having the eldrazi come to innistrad was a big turn-off and I feel like I’ve seen that sentiment before. Can somebody break it down for me as somebody who doesn’t really follow the Magic story and wasn’t playing during OG Innistrad or the return?

For me, finding out that there was a point where Magic basically did Bloodborne (before Bloodborne was a thing) was really cool. Brisela is my kind of card(s). Am I just too much of an edgelord?
 

shivam

commander damage
(he/hiim)
my problem with Shadows was that the set changed from gothic and victorian horror to cosmic and body horror. The art was absolutely disgusting and the whole tone of the setting shifted to being way more of a mindfuck. I found it incredibly stressful and unpleasant. Brisela is a big example of how fucked up everything was.
 

Tangent

(she/her)
Thanks so much for clarifying! I hope me asking didn't come across as combative or anything. I legit just wanted to better understand in case I was missing things.
 

shivam

commander damage
(he/hiim)
No problem at all. Mechanically, I loved the set a lot. It's just the art was too much.
 

Tangent

(she/her)
For me the important constraint would be that every card has more than one "face." DFCs, split cards, and flip cards all have the property of having multiple names, multiple pieces of art, and multiple text boxes. All of them are card styles/frames that take a little getting used to for players who haven't seen them before (without just being one of the recent avant-garde alternate treatments).

For me, embalm and eternalize seem more like a variation on flashback or escape, and they don't really cause the same kind of bewilderment. Morph would probably be a mechanic a little more aligned with the idea, but even then it doesn't affect the card style/frame.

To each their own, of course.
 
Would Adventure cards fit your criteria? They don't have the multiple artworks, but do have multiple names and text boxes. There are definitely some interesting cards in that category, as well as fixing in green.
 
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