Hello reader! What We Learned is a weekly feature here at Hipsters of the Coast. The goal is to take some of the events and articles polluting the Magic world, strip out the chaff (tournament reports, game theory, economics) and give you our superior opinion. Complaints are encouraged.

Well, I guess everyone was wrong about the Mayans. It turns out that ancient civilizations that weren’t able to predict the white man coming from Europe to commit genocide on their people were just as bad at predicting the end of the world. Let’s face it, people have been predicting that the world is going to come to an end for as long as we’ve had the ability to put thoughts together. The Babylonians thought the world was ending 2500 years ago. The Jews and Christians thought it was ending 2000 years ago. The Dark Ages clearly were thought of as the End of Days and as recently as last year people were convinced that there’d be no tomorrow.

Predicting the end of the world has been around forever. People are just awful at predictions. Except for Nostradamus. Everything he predicted has come true or will come true. That’s what happens when you make vague predictions. Other people do the hard work for you. For example, I have a vision of a future where the game of Magic is plagued by an overly powerful spell that will contain a Mana symbol most commonly found in the most powerful of spells. I bet that one comes true by April.

This is why we spend way more time looking back than looking forwards. It’s just so much simpler to not make mistakes when you’re talking about events that have already happened. Don’t get me wrong, most people are still flat-out awful at looking backwards, but it’s less painful than looking forwards. The inevitable “year in review” has come to bombard us with top-ten lists and deep retrospectives about the last 365 days. Just last week I reviewed the year of Magic products, but that doesn’t count, because it was a Holiday article, not a Year-In-Review article. Unfortunately for you this is a Year-In-Review article. So here goes:

2012 wasn’t too bad at all.

No really, that’s all I’ve got. I’m not going to sit here and brag about how great my year was (it was awesome) or how things have been improving economically (unemployment is down) or how the next four years will be better than the last (four more years). On the other side I’m not going to remind you of all the senseless violence that goes on in the world (Sandy Hook) or the ongoing struggles for freedom and equal rights (support gay marriage) or the never-ending strife between people of different beliefs (get your act together Middle East).

2012 wasn’t too bad at all. It had ups and downs, heartache and joy, etc. etc. Now is the time to look forwards to what’s on the horizon and start planning for a better 2013.  It’s fine to indulge a little bit in the review of last year, but do so with an eye for what you can do going forwards to make 2013 suck a little less. Honestly, what more can you ask for than for next year to just suck a little less?

2012 wasn’t too bad at all, but we can make 2013 much better.

The Quick Hits

On 2012: Paulo has a pretty textbook designed Year-in-Review for y’all to kick things off. [PV’s Playhouse]

On Awards: I’ve been told that Reuben Bresler is a stand-up comedian. In fact his profile at StarCity Games says so. Did the word ‘comedy’ get redefined this year while I was on vacation? I could only stomach the first half of his 2012 Year-End Awards. If you can make it the full 10 minutes then you have a much higher tolerance for ‘comedy’ than I do. [The Newsening]

On Cashing In: Adam Barnello had a pretty good time this year turning cardboard into cash. It turns out growing up doesn’t suck. [Recurring Nightmares]

On Complaints: Not everything in 2012 was peachy keen and Matt Sperling wants to make sure you know that he’s not happy about a few things. [Sperling’s Sick of It]

On Online: Worth Wollpert figured out that when more people are playing paper Magic, more people play online Magic as well. He also sorted out that as they improved the quality of the Beta for the new client more people liked it. Finally, he reported that league play, which was the most popular part of the old client, will maybe make its return in 2013. This guy must get paid a lot. [Magic Online]

On Walmart: Jason Alt wants people to support their Local Game Stores and consider the hidden costs of going solely through online retailers while analyzing the benefits of building a community. I would give this a couple reads because he’s 100% correct. [Jason’s Archives]

On Yin & Yang: Here’s a look back at 2012 with both the positives and negatives in the Magic community, courtesy Jon Agley. [StarCity Games]

The Week Ahead

Christmas is coming. Check out the MTGO Online Holiday schedule, since it’s not like you’re doing anything else important, right?


A Very Merry Christmas
And a Happy New Year
Let’s Hope it’s a Good One
Without Any Fear

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