The Monday before New Year’s Eve (another in the shitty line of arbitrary holidays that thankfully offer days off from work), I went to Twenty Sided for Monday Night Legacy. I ran Shardless BUG, as usual, and it looked like this:

Blue Jund

Maindeck (60)
Baleful Strix
Shardless Agent
Deathrite Shaman
Jace, the Mind Sculptor
Liliana of the Veil
Creeping Tar Pit
Misty Rainforest
Polluted Delta
Tropical Island
Underground Sea
Verdant Catacombs
Abrupt Decay
Force of Will
Ancestral Vision
Hymn to Tourach
Maelstrom Pulse
Sideboard (15)
Baleful Strix
Toxic Deluge
Golgari Charm
Nihil Spellbomb
Force of Willl
Mindbreak Trap
Hymn to Tourach

Garrett and I played a few games prior to the start of round one that can easily be described as “loose.” I don’t think I won them.

Round One vs Meru’s Maverick Deck

photo 1-2

Meru’s been playing Maverick forever, he’s a master. Game one I made one mistake, don’t remember what it was, and it cost me. Game two I made two mistakes (played Golgari Charm to kill a 1/1 give-a-creature-protection creature, then hoped with my next Golgari Charm I could kill two Knight of the Reliquarys after a Nihil Spellbomb graveyard eating, but had forgotten one of the Knights was active so Meru ate a plains and fetched up a fetchland to keep’em both alive and kicking). I don’t remember what the second mistake was. Dane, sitting next to me, shook his head and said we all had those kinds of days. Hold your Charms, kids. Hold’em tight.

Game two went to time. I didn’t kill Meru by turn five so the round, now at 0-1-1 went to him. Game two was probably mine due to how sweet my hand was, but what can you do? Rules are rules. OH! Gaddock Teeg is a super pain in the ass if you’ve got Toxic Deluge in your hand. SUPER PAIN IN THE ASS.

[Author’s note: After posting my article to the Hipsters’s mailing list for a once over and edit from our crew, it came to our attention that Toxic Deluge is unaffected by Gaddock Teeg‘s abilities. The X is an additional cost, not a mana cost, and so can be paid. Oops. Magic has lots of subtle language that I can’t always wrap my head around. Oh how different game two would’ve been!]

Round two pairings went up and I got the bye. I walked over to Orlando and he gave me the “nothing I can do” face and shook his head. I told him that I was gonna drop because sitting around for an hour not playing Magic isn’t why I came to play Magic and I had Assassin’s Creed to play and an article to not be writing.

As in most competitive games I wanted to run that match back. It happens every week during basketball. If I win or lose I want to try again with the same teams and figure things out a bit, see how the dice roll, etc. Building up that energy and then emptying it into nothing is a total fucking buzzkill.

On the train ride home I continued reading The Possibility of an Island (Michel Houellebecq), a book described to me by an important pretty lady as “like Camus plus sci-fi for today,” or maybe that’s what I imagine her describing it as. Anyway, it’s accurate.

So that’s it. That’s the Magic I played this whole week. No Modern. No Standard. No drafting. One Legacy game.

During Hipsters’s Thursday editors meeting I asked for help, for ideas and topics. There was some discussion about how my interest in Magic goes in waves, which is true. I thought a little about how frustrating it is to have had so many local-ish PTQs last season, so many GPs within affordable range, and to have next to nothing this season so far. There’s no way with the shortened season length I’ll be able to get to 1500 points again without spending serious dough on plane tickets, which I’m not willing to do. With Sunday PTQs now being a thing Monique is mostly out for rides, that group is slowly coming apart it seems. At the very least it’s not as consistent as it has been. Fettoblaster has commitments out the wazoo so he’s usually out. Hunter doesn’t play constructed and is preparing to get married and has an insanely demanding job so there’re not rides in his SUV either. Beep beep who got the keys to the Jeep? Not this guy.

My sights are set to Richmond and the Modern GP there. It’s the only chance I’ll have to use my three byes this season before they go back to one or two byes. I feel like I’m growing up and Magic is slipping away from me for the second time. I love the game but it is so drastically inefficient as a use of time I can hardly stand it. Good news is that it probably means I’m happy in other areas of my life. My painting is bonkers right now. I’ve figured out how to paint ghosts trapped within the ice cage of time. I’m seeing a brilliant woman who inspires me, and though she has no negative thoughts towards Magic, I find myself not playing as much anyway. #sigh. Things are going very well. I hope Xenagos’s ascension to divine status will reinvigorate my Magic practice. Until then it’s hopefully a PTQ in Philly (I’ll probably play Mono U unless someone gives me a different deck they’re stoked about).

OH! Almost forgot. Monique asked me to talk about some Magic art. She mentioned that Hopeful Eidolon looks very different from many of the cards in the set.

So, I looked the artist up, Min Yum. She’s done 15 total illustrations for Magic. She created Baleful Eidolon in a nearly identical style to his hopeful sister.

I think it’s a pretty good take on what being an enchantment-creature is. It’s bestow. It’s between forms until its form is determined. The rest of the art in the set is more linear, more obvious in regards to the interpretation of the concepts involved in the cards. Min Yum also illustrated Artisan of Forms and that card is very traditional. Who knows why they’re different?

This style reminds me of Bill Sienkiewicz’s work. I know him from comic books but he’s done Magic cards, too: Phyrexian War Beast and Soldevi Steam Beast. Here’re some examples of his work that I think look sick:

Bill Sienkiewicz’s work is less computery and more 1990s response to abstraction within figuration than Min Yum’s but they’re branches of the same family tree. I don’t really know what else to say about it. It’s ethereal. Otherworldly. It’s illustration, so beyond an image’s content being offensive, I don’t know that it really matters to me. I have no beef with photoshopped art but none of this gets me terribly excited. I’ve been really into Nicholas Poussin lately. He puts all of these fools to shame.

I’ve been playing some D&D with my main bros. It’s tedious but fun. At the very least it makes for interesting notes and cool photographs.

ddnotes photo 5

That’s where I’m at.

Thanks for reading.

Lots of love,
MTGO: The_Obliterator

Artist, cheerleader. Matt started playing at the end of The Dark, hit his stride during Mirage block, and quit Magic after finding booze, drugs, and sex during freshman year of art school. In 2011 or 2012 Twenty Sided Store opened eight blocks from Matt’s apartment in Williamburg, Brooklyn. He kept his distance for a few months due to fear of the game’s power over him but eventually caved. Matt’s main MTG interests are Unhinged lands and constructed formats. Power and Toughness is his weekly summation/journal article and he writes an Arting Around article now and then, too.

Bonus: BDM posted this link to awesome abandoned places on the Earth. I like the way it looks.

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