Magic: The Gathering

THE MANA DORK – The Second Sun Approaches!

by May 11, 2017

Amonkhet Prerelease –  The Second Sun Approaches!

amonkhet-prerelease-mana-dork

Hail Nicol Bolas, the God-Pharoah! May his return come early, and may we be found worthy!

amonkhet-prerelease-approach-of-the-second-sun

The store’s Amonkhet prerelease is only hours away, and Magic’s newest set has a ton of fun toys for Limited and Constructed play. Cycling looks like it will be making some noise with the new cycling dual lands and a number of fun payoffs like Drake Haven and Archfiend of Ifnir. The new exert and embalm mechanics are going to make for some very interesting choices during games, the Aftermath cards will have players agog (atog?), and the prevalence of -1/-1 counters will have implications for removal spells and build-arounds in every colour.

Here’s everything you need to know to do probably-better-than-last-time-maybe-or-at-least-walk-in-with-more-confidence-because-confidence-is-good-right-yes-excellent-good-show!

amonkhet-prerelease-aven-wind-guide

EMBALMS AWAY

Embalm is pretty straightforward: it’s like Flashback, but for creatures. Once the Embalm creature is in your yard, you can pay the Embalm cost and exile the creature to create a token that’s an exact copy of it, except it’s also White and a Zombie. (Which raises the question: most Zombies are Human, but Humans are also Human. Does that mean an Embalmed Anointer Priest is a White Zombie that’s more Human than Human? These are the things I think about.)

 First things first: yes, the Embalmed token itself also has Embalm, but it doesn’t matter, because tokens can’t exist in the graveyard. (Or in your hand, library, or exile.) Whenever a token would change zones — by dying and going to the graveyard, for example — it vanishes from existence as a state-based action, before players receive priority. Which is a fancy way of saying that before you could activate the token’s Embalm ability, the game has already ushered it along into the next life.

That being said, Embalm is still powerful and something you should think about when building your deck for the Amonkhet prerelease. You’re getting two creatures off of one card, on a bit of a layaway plan. Don’t count them as two creatures when you’re building with them, of course, but do remember that you’ll be able to clog up the board state a little longer, and that you’ll be facing down extra blockers and board stalls some percentage of the time. I’d definitely consider looking at exile spells like Cast Out and Final Reward for the creatures, and bounce spells like Winds of Rebuke to deal with the tokens. (Remember what I said about how tokens can’t exist in players’ hands? Turns out, if you bounce a token… )

amonkhet-prerelease-ahn-crop-champion

I HAVE BEEN EXERTING MY BRAIN BUT CANNOT COME UP WITH AN EXERT PUN

Once more unto the breach, my friends, once more, or close up the Hekma with our Naktamun dead! Exert lets a creature give 110% when it swings to convey some additional benefit, at the cost of not untapping the following turn.

A reminder for using Exert — you must declare whether or not you’re Exerting a creature BEFORE blockers are declared. The option to Exert a creature triggers as the creature’s being declared as an attacker, so you have to decide before your opponent declares blockers.

This means you must Exert your creatures carefully if you want to successfully use them during the Amonkhet prerelease. There’s no use Exerting every time and skipping every second combat — AND giving your opponent a combat step where he knows you can’t block! I’d be careful to Exert only when you need it for your creature to get through or when you specifically need the creature’s Exert bonus. If you can read your opponent and anticipate what the boardstate will be in a turn or two and whether or not it’s safe, go ahead!

amonkhet-prerelease-heaven-earth

IN THE AFTERMATH

Aftermath is pretty straightforward: it’s like Flashback, but for spells.

Wait, what? Don’t those already have Flashback?

Actually, Aftermath is a new take on split cards like Fire // Ice and Ready // Willing. Cards with Aftermath also function as two separate spells, but one of them can only be cast from the graveyard. Then, just like with Flashback and Embalm, the card gets exiled.

 Once again, we’re getting the value of two cards for the cost of one, on a bit of a layaway plan. This time, though, we’ll have to be more careful — many of the Aftermath spells have heavier mana costs than normal, and none of them have cycling, so they’re not going into your graveyard for free. I would look at the “normal” side of an Aftermath card when building your Amonkhet prerelease deck and judge whether or not I actually want it in my deck before including it.

 (Also, a side note for the more invested among us, and by “invested” I mean “people who like Isochron Scepter“: as of Amonkhet’s release, all split cards are treated as though their CMC is the combined CMC of both halves when in any zone other than the stack. This makes them much more difficult to use with Scepter and similar effects, but much easier to actually remember how they work without six minutes of Googling and a judge call. Overall, I’m a fan.)

amonkhet-prerelease-scarab-feast

I LIKE TO RIDE MY CYCLING CARDS, CYCLING CARDS, CYCLING CARDS

An old friend slides back into Magic with Cycling’s appearance in Amonkhet!

Cycling is sometimes challenging to evaluate. Cycling cards are usually a little overcosted, but the benefit is that they’re not dead in your hand or deck — if you’re in a situation where you’re holding a Cycling card that does nothing for you, you can cash it in to draw a card instead, and have another chance at drawing that premium removal spell much-needed land drop. In general, you can safely include narrower effects and more toolbox-y cards in your deck when they have Cycling, because they don’t take up an entire card slot.

With Cycling, I’d be careful to manage the number of cycling cards versus the number of cycling-payoff cards in your deck. I’ll be looking for at least 8-9 cycling cards before I include my first Drake Haven or Horror of the Broken Lands.

amonkhet-prerelease-bounty-of-the-luxa

GENERAL NOTES

As always, drink water, eat healthy, get some rest, and don’t be afraid to call a Judge if you need to, they’re there to help everyone at the Amonkhet prerelease.

Also, remember BREAD — bombs, removal, evasive creatures, aggressive creatures, then duds. Live by the bread, die by the bread. Be the bread.

(… if you’re wondering why none of those phrases used “bread” originally, I recommend breadening your horizons. Eh? … Eh?)

amonkhet-prerelease-combat-celebrant

THE PLANESWALKER DECK CHALLENGE CONCLUDES IN OUR NEXT COLUMN — WHILE YOU’RE WAITING, COME HANG OUT AT THE STORE 

I have finally plunged the Dovin Baan Planeswalker Deck we’ve forged over the course of Aether Revolt (1, 2, 3) into the crucible of Standard combat at A Muse N Games, even as the fires of the Revolt began to smolder. Soon, my friends, I shall tell you tales of towers, rats, and energy. Soon.

In the interim, A Muse N Games is hosting Amonkhet prereleases events all weekend! Swing by at midnight, noon, 5 PM, and 6 PM Sunday for sweet, sweet Amonkhet Prerelease Sealed action — and a chance at sweet, sweet prizes!

On top of that, the GPT Farewell Tour continues with GPT Montreal Standard on Sunday April 30 and GPT Vegas Legacy on Sunday May 7, both at noon (11 AM registration)!

Finally, it is time for the human boardgames to be celebrated! International Tabletop Day is Saturday April 29, and A Muse N Games has a bunch of fun things planned and prizes waiting! Bring a game, bring a friend, bring both, bring neither, just come on down!

See you at the store!

Jesse Mackenzie is a regular contributor to A Muse N Games. He has spent the last week staring at As Foretold and dreaming of free counterspells on his opponents’ turns. Tune in every two weeks for The Mana Dork, his column on all things Magic!

Hour of Devastation Release Weekend

by June 3, 2017

Hour of Devastation, the latest Magic the Gathering set, will be here on July 14th, 2017! Here is what we have scheduled for the release weekend:

Friday, July 14

Noon: Hour of Devastation Draft
Players receive 2-packs of Hour of Devastation & 1-Pack of Amonkhet, and draft the best 40 card deck they can.
Entry Fee $20
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

3:30 pm: Hour of Devastation Draft
Players receive 2-packs of Hour of Devastation & 1-Pack of Amonkhet, and draft the best 40 card deck they can.
Entry Fee $20
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

6:30 pm: Hour of Devastation Sealed
Players receive an Hour of Devastation Prerelease kit (while supplies list). These includes a Foil Promo, Spindown Counter, 4-Packs of Hour of Devastation and 2-Packs of Amonkhet.
Entry fee $36
Players will enjoy 4 rounds of swiss.
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

7:30 pm: Commander
Both casual and Competitive pods as usual.
Entry fee $6
Prizing: Casual Players each receive a Booster Pack for participating.
Competitive Players – prizing to the winner, prize TBD based on players entering. (8 or more players and a revised Dual will be up for grabs.

9:30 pm: Archenemy / Planechase Commander
Entry fee $6
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

Saturday, July 15

Noon: Hour of Devastation Draft
Players receive 2-packs of Hour of Devastation & 1-Pack of Amonkhet, and draft the best 40 card deck they can.
Entry Fee $20
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

4:00 pm: Hour of Devastation Draft
Players receive 2-packs of Hour of Devastation & 1-Pack of Amonkhet, and draft the best 40 card deck they can.
Entry Fee $20
Prizing: 1.5 Packs per player into the prize pool.
Each player playing through all swiss rounds receives a booster pack from the prize pool!

Hour of Devastation Prerelease Weekend July 8-9

by June 3, 2017

Hour of Devastation Prerelease

A Muse N Games is hosting 4 Hour of Devastation Prerelease events for the newest Magic: the Gathering set! Midnight, Noon, and 5 pm on Saturday, July 8 and then 6pm on Sunday,July 9.

Hour of Devastation prerelease events will start promptly with deck construction at the listed start times. Early Bird registration $35 taxes in if you register before 10:00 pm Wednesday, July 5. Regular registration is $40 taxes in.

Each participating player will receive a special prerelease pack containing 4-packs of Hour of Devastation, 2-packs of Amonkhet, a spindown life counter, and promotional foil card! Two Hour of Devastation booster packs per player will be placed into the prize pool. Any player who plays through all four rounds of swiss receive at least one Hour of Devastation booster pack from the prize pool.

Further prizing information will be announced closer to the date of the Hour of Devastation prerelease. You can preregister now in store or online below.

Midnight

Noon

5:00 pm

Sunday

Amonkhet Game Day

by May 14, 2017

Amonkhet Game Day is a standard format tournament with swiss rounds and a top cut.

Details

Date: May 20-21, 2017
Registration: 11:00 am
Start Time: 12:00 pm
Entry Fee: $6 (taxes included)

Prizing

amonkhet game day prizing

Promo cards—one for each event participant
8 rare, premium promo cards—one for each player in the Top 8
1 first-place playmat—for the winner of our Game Day event

Amonkhet Standard Showdown

by May 7, 2017

Amonkhet Standard Showdown starts May 6th at A Muse N Games!

Amonkhet Standard Showdown

Entry Fee $6. 3 rounds of standard action with Amonkhet Standard Showdown booster packs from Wizards of the Coast up for grabs. Events start every Saturday (with the exception of May 20th for Amonkhet Game Day) at 3:00 pm.

Amonkhet Standard Showdown booster packs consist of 2 rares or mythic rares, 1 Amonkhet full-art, and 1 premium card from a currently legal Standard set (it can be any rarity, and it can be a full-art land). It is worth noting Masterpiece Series: Amonkhet Invocations will not appear in these booster packs. Prizing distribution will be determined based on the number of entrants.

The Amonkhet Standard Showdown events are a great way to show off your latest deck builds using the new Amonkhet set and/or any standard legal cards. Along with our Tuesday night Standard days, these events give you weekly opportunities to play in a fun and competitive atmosphere.

Amonkhet League

by May 10, 2017

League starts May 7 at 2pm with the finale on May 28!

To enter the league, a player gets 3 packs of Amonkhet for $20.

  • Players will open three booster packs and use those boosters to build a 30-card deck
  • The league will last three weeks. (Players may enter the league at any point during the league)
  • After every 3 losses, or once each week, players can add an additional pack of Amonkhet to their card pool for $6 (taxes included)
  • Matches consist of a single game. Each player gets one free mulligan at the start of the game
  • Players can bring their league decks and play games throughout the week in addition to getting together on Sunday afternoons for league day!
  • Prizing will include various promos, foils, and other goodies, depending on total players involved in the league

Magic Open House April

by April 12, 2017

Magic Open House

Magic Open House is an all day event with many events throughout the day to celebrate Magic the Gathering at A Muse N Games. We will be hosting our usual Saturday draft at noon, mini masters tournament throughout the day, and a 2 pm standard tournament.

There will be participation prizes from Wizards of the Coast as well as draws and prizing for the tournaments. Bring a friend who has never played Magic before and you will receive a premium full-art basic land from Amonkhet and your friend will receive a free welcome deck (while supplies last).

Modern Masters 2017 League

by March 29, 2017

Leauge starts April 2 at 2pm (Ends April 16 at 6pm)

To tnter the league, a player gets 3 packs of Modern Masters 2017 for $35.

  • Players will open three booster packs and use those boosters to build a 30-card deck.
  • The league will last three weeks. (Players may enter the league at any point during the league)
  • Every week, players will add a booster pack to their pool, rebuilding as often as players would like. Players can also add a booster after three losses. (MM17 boosters are 20% off for league members for league purchases = $12)
  • Matches consist of a single game. Each player gets one free mulligan at the start of the game.
  • Players can bring their league decks and play games throughout the week in addition to getting together on Sunday afternoons for league day!

Grand Prix Trials Farewell Tour 2017

by June 3, 2017

grand prix trials
Earlier this year, Wizards of the Coast announced that in store Grand Prix Trial events would be ending after Grand Prix Las Vegas. A Muse N Games will be the only store in Manitoba hosting Grand Prix Trials for both Grand Prix Montreal (May 19-21) and Grand Prix Las Vegas (June 14-18). To help send the Grand Prix Trials into retirement, we are happy to announce the Farewell Tour 2017!

Magic the Gathering Grand Prix Trials Farewell Tour will be hosted by A Muse N Games consisting of 10 tournaments between March 25 and June 2. We will be running GPT Events for Standard, Legacy, Modern, and Limited.

 

Date Time Event Type Entry Fee (taxes included) Add this event to your Calendar
Sat, March 25 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Legacy $20 Facebook

Google

Sun, March 26 Registration: 11:00 am
Deckbuilding: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Limited Featuring Modern Masters 2017 $95 Facebook

Google

Mon, March 27 Registration: 6:00 pm
First Round: 7:00 pm
GPT Vegas Modern $20 Facebook

Google

Sun, April 9 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Modern $20 Facebook

Google

Sun, April 16 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Legacy $20 Facebook

Google

Sun, April 30 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Montreal Standard $20 Facebook

Google

Sun, May 7 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Legacy $20 Facebook

Google

Fri, May 26 Registration: 6:00 pm
Deckbuilding: 6:30 pm
GPT Vegas Limited Featuring Amonkhet $50 Facebook

Google

Sun, May 28 Registration: 11:00 am
First Round: 12:00 pm
GPT Vegas Modern $20 Facebook

Google

Fri, June 2 Registration: 6:00 pm
Deckbuilding: 6:30 pm
GPT Vegas Limited Featuring Amonkhet $50 Facebook

Google

GPT Farewell Tour Playmat

Winners of each Grand Prix Trials event will receive the GPT Farewell Tour 2017 Playmat! There will also be some playmats that will be given away so everyone has a chance to get one!

grand prix trials

Event Details

Standard – Entry Fee $20

Three packs of Amonkhet per player will be entered into the prize pool.
Prizing will be distributed after swiss rounds, before the cut.
First place will also receive a GPT Farewell Tour 2017 playmat.

Legacy and Modern – Entry Fee $20

One pack of Modern Masters 2017 per player will be entered into the prize pool. Players may opt to substitute and receive Eternal Masters or three packs of Aether Revolt instead.
Prizing will be distributed after swiss rounds, before the cut.
First place will also receive a GPT Farewell Tour 2017 playmat.

Sealed Modern Masters 2017 – Entry Fee $95

Each player will receive six packs to build their decks. Two packs of Modern Masters 2017 per player will be entered into the prize pool.
Prizing will be distributed after swiss rounds, before the cut.
First place will also receive a GPT Farewell Tour 2017 playmat.

Sealed Amonkhet – Entry Fee $50

Each player will receive six packs to build their decks. Two packs of Amonkhet per player will be entered into the prize pool. If there are 16 or more entrants, top 8 will additionally booster draft Amonkhet.
Prizing will be distributed after swiss rounds, before the cut.
First place will also receive a GPT Farewell Tour 2017 playmat.

FAQ:
Q: Can I register in advance for a tournament?
A: Yes, players can register in store at their convenience.

Q: If I win an event, do I have to use my byes with the GP of the corresponding type?
A: WotC has informed us “Winners of your Grand Prix Trials may apply their byes to any (or all) of the three Grand Prix.”

Q: The event says that it starts at noon, but registration starts at 11am, when should I show up?
A: The first round of the event will start promptly at noon. The store opens at 11am. We encourage players to arrive no later then 11:45.

 

Amonkhet Prerelease Weekend April 22-23, 2017

by April 26, 2017

AMNG Amonkhet Prerelease info

For the next Magic: the Gathering set Amonkhet  A Muse N Games is hosting 4 prereleases! Midnight, Noon, and 5pm on Saturday April 22. Then 6pm on Sunday April 23.

Amonket prereleases will start promptly with deck construction at the listed start times. Early Bird registration $35 taxes in if you register before 10:00 pm Wednesday, April 19. Regular registration is $40 taxes in.

Each participating player will receive a special prerelease pack containing 6-packs of Amonkhet, a spindown life counter, and promotional foil card! Two Amonkhet booster packs per player will be placed into the prize pool. Any player who plays through all four rounds of swiss receives an Amonkhet booster pack from the prize pool. There will also be flights of open dueling during each prerelease.

We also will be giving away four special Amonkhet playmats at each prerelease! Those who finish first and second will receive a mat, a third will be given away in a random draw, and a fourth will be given away to a participant of open dueling by random draw. A championship plaque will also be given to the winner of the Midnight and the Sunday 6:00 pm prereleases.

Register in store or online through Eventbrite

Time Facebook Link Online Registration
Powered by Eventbrite
Midnight Facebook Register Now
Noon Facebook Register Now
5:00 PM Facebook Register Now
6:00 PM Sunday Facebook Register Now

 

Standard Spring 9 Week Challenge

by February 16, 2017

Wizards of the Coast has challenged us to run 15 Standard tournaments in  9 weeks, and get a bunch of spiffy rewards for our players!

 

Alt Art Battle Lands from BFZ

When is the challenge?

February 13 – April 16, 2017

What do we have to do?

Run 15 Standard tournaments.

How are we going to accomplish this?

We normally run Standard on Tuesdays (at 7pm), so that takes care of 9 standard tournaments. We have to fit in 6 additional standard tournaments. We’ll be running some of them on the following dates:

  • Monday February 20, 1pm (Louis Riel Day)
  • Sunday March 5, 2 pm
  • Sunday March 12 2 pm
  • Saturday April 15, 2pm (Part of the Magic Open House!)

Additionally we are going to be offering “On Demand Standard Events“.
Any time we have 4 folks in store and they want to have a standard round robin tournament, we’ll fire it up. $6 per person, 1.5 packs per player into the prize pool. Each participant will get a booster at the conclusion of the round robin from the prize pool, the remaining packs go to the winner.

But how do players get the spiffy alt-art battle lands?

Players participating in Standard events between February 13 and April 16th will receive “Aether Revolt Standard Series” punch cards. After participating in 6 Standard Events, players can turn in their punch card to claim one of the 30 Alt art Battle Lands. Players may redeem  more than one completed punch card, while supplies last.

*Alt Art lands will be distributed  on a first come, first serve basis, until supplies are exhausted. The sooner you complete and hand in your card for 6 events the sooner you secure your Alt Art Battle Land [Example: John players in Events of 2/14, 2/20, 2/21, 2/28, 3/5, & 3/7 – he turns in his card and requests a Sunken Hollow on 3/7, when the Alt art cards come in, we would contact John and let him know his Sunken Hollow is ready for pick up!]

Any players who participate in 15 Standard events will be entered into a draw to win a special Amonket Playmat!

**Playmats and Alt-Art Battle Lands will be available to be picked up sometime in Mid April. Players will be contacted when they are available.