Vikings: Scourge of the North

Vikings Scourge of the North

Wargaming is certainly something I never intended to explore nor is it that far away from my current interests to be shocking. In fact, aside from the historical aspect of the hobby, wargaming seems like something that is neighbors to activities like Magic, D&D, and other passionate fandoms. Since attending 1d4 Con I have developed an interest in historical wargaming but do not possess the means or desire to get into miniatures. This led me to search for alternatives that would more compact and cheaper but still retain the strategy…

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Numenera — Starter Set

One of my current RPG groups is in recovery. After two years of weekly Pathfinder campaigns, the group collectively lost interest in most RPG games which has led to a fun delve into weekly boardgames. Because I always want to play new games and learn new games, I am making a small campaign of introducing the group to new systems / settings by use of starter sets. These 20-30$ boxes come with a condensed ruleset, pre-generated characters and enough material to run a gamer for 2-3 hours. It is from…

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1d4 Con 2019

Worlds Away It was Saturday of the convention and during the twilight hours of 10pm, all of the blocks of games would be in their 2nd or third hour with still two hours to go. The vendor hall closed early at 7 and for few quiet hours the outside of the Clarion Hotel in Shepherdstown West Virginia is filled with the occasional shuffle is a person carrying games or the occasional smoker — though that activity is smaller than other conventions. It had rained all days and by now the…

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Ravnica Underworld: Krenko’s Way

This is a continuation of my thoughts and feeling about the D&D MTG campaign my group is beginning. My group is comprised of interested players who have had little to no experience with the system. What they do have, however, is knowledge about the campaign world which is the city planet of Ravnica. What Wizards has done is thrown our group a rulebook that will make our dreams possible and begin a long campaign in the underworld of Ravinca. There was a lot of questions on how this was going…

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Ravnica Underworld: Beginning The D&D MTG Campaign

ravnica

The Guildmaster’s Guide To Ravnica (GMGTR) is perhaps one of the best things which could be published for our current Magic The Gathering (MTG) / Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) group. I mean, how could Wizards have done a better job at tying my two special interests together? Perhaps combine it with my love for science fiction? Perhaps in the future. This recent supplementary book ties in the plane of Ravinca, all of its collected history, and general lore for proposed adventuring using the 5th Edition (5e) ruleset for D&D. It…

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Life After Brawl and the Birth of Rogue Formats

Ravnica Island

I have written a lot about Magic the Gathering and spent a big part of summer focusing on the format known as Brawl. Previous articles followed this new format from rocky beginnings to more rocky endings with the actual state of the format still unknown to the community. If one wants to read the history of Brawl one can page through my previous articles or just read the summary on MTG Goldfish. What is important is that Brawl came and went much with exctiment and jokes made at its expense.…

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Dungeons and Dragons – Art and Arcana: A Visual History

”If you thought that was cool, wait till you try the real thing.” A friend told me something to that effect in the schoolyard one day in 1984. My eleven-year-old mind was still reeling with excitement from having spent most of my weekend engrossed in The Warlock of Firetop Mountain, a book unlike any I had ever read before. The Fighting Fantasy gamebook by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone had totally swept me up and pulled me in to a magical domain of excitement and peril akin to the wondrous…

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D&D and MTG: Ravnica Incoming

I never really thought this whole D&D/MTG thing would go past the level of novelty but here we are almost a year old and looking ahead to a new set. If you have read any previous articles, my Magic The Gathering playgroup began playing Dungeons and Dragons with the stipulation that we adventure through popular worlds of Magic. This isn’t that far of a jump as Wizards of the Coast oversees both hobby factions though there has been little crossover in supporters for both hobbies. While both things seem super…

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A Brawl in Ravnica (Part 2)

If you remember my previous article in regards to a Brawl In Ravnica, I was discussing the various commanders one could use if they were attempting to play Brawl. I think I am going to extend this article in just discussing the cards themselves and their implications as a full commander. My playgroup and I might be moving away from Brawl until it sorts itself out for a more wild west of casual play. This does not mean the rollercoaster format of Brawl cont be of interest to other people…

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A Brawl in Ravnica (Part 1)

Brawl In Ravinca

EDITORS NOTE: At the time of writing this article, Brawl has been announced to be retiring from MTGO which closes a very few strange months for the format. While Brawl still exists and most likely will continue, its existence as a 1v1 competitive format closes the chapter on a format that is suffering at establishing its identity. Below are my thoughts on Brawl in the era of Ravinca. ——— A brawl is surely brewing. Well, we hope. Brawl, for me, has been a wild ride. From excitement to hopeful to…

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Guilds of Ravnica: Artwork

I love Ravnica and so will you. We are about to fully plunge into spoiler season regarding the next set for Magic the Gathering: Guilds of Ravnica. This set will bring players back to a plane that is a “Ecumenopolis” — a word I just learned which means a worldwide city. Ravnica was initially released in 2005 and with a sequel, Return to Ravnica, in 2012. The announcement of a third installment into this ecumenopolis, instilled a deep seated sense of joy as Return to Ravnica was my first set…

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Sand Castles: Adventures in Design

I really couldn’t come up with a snappy title for this article so we are going with Sand Castles. I believe it works for now but I could change it in the future. “Sandbox” games are a term which describes open ended tabletop adventuring where the players make choices which leads to further development in the story. This type of adventure design contracts the much maligned “Railroad” story where player’s choices mean little in terms of where the narrative travels. Sandbox adventures lay at the core of RPG design with…

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Casual Magic: The Summer of Brawl

Magic the Gathering: BRAWL

If you have been following any of my recent articles on casual Magic, you have seen an interest in Wizard’s newest format Brawl. To summarize, Brawl is a 60 card singleton format based around a commander that follows the Standard rotation schedule and to some extent its banlist. While it is easy to think of it as EDH-lite, its complexities and nuances seem to have both positives and negatives for different fanbases. Brawl has also had a rocky start from the bizarre rollout, to an online domination of one deck,…

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Casual Magic: The Philosophy of Group Hug

This is perhaps one of the first deck explorations I have written for this site and it comes from years of tinkering and playing with a specific EDH strategy called Group Hug. To catch everyone else up, EDH is a format for Magic the Gathering where multiple people play with 100 card singleton deck at 40 life. The games are longer, the cards are crazier, and format has become a paragon for casual players as its regulations is dependent on social politics and in group rules. While the atmosphere of…

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