Posts Tagged draft

Review: Vintage Rotisserie

First of all, this is not something the majority of folks are likely to just pick up: vintage rotisserie draft, as I have discussed previously, is only for the most highly enfranchised of Magic players, and even then it’s not for everybody.  However, I have done it now three times (!) and thought it would be a good time to talk about it.

Overall, I have not done well in the play-the-games portion.  But I have had lots of exciting moments during the draft proper – times when I realized exactly the card I needed and was able to pick it up, or times when I made someone yell in agony as I swiped their card before they got to it.  And I have also had some very fun games despite losing a lot.  I would not have thought, when told about a format where you needed to know all 12,000 Magic cards, and where simple missteps in draft could be a big problem for your deck, that the entire event would be so fun.

Things I have learned, that I would share with others!

  • Having a fixed set of cards, like 1000 or so of the “top contenders” based on consensus, out for people to see and interact with is an excellent way to do this kind of draft.  Having everyone do tons of homework and agonize over weeks in an asynchronous, not-in-person draft is kind of poopy.
  • Drafting a fun deck is probably better than a boring, skill-intensive deck (and some of the fun decks are skill-intensive too!)  It’s just way better to be enjoying playing, you can devote mental energy elsewhere, and the decks are close to each other in power level anyway.
  • For anyone who has played forever and is still into Magic, has or knows someone with a big collection, and/or likes to hang out with friends for a long Magic-related activity, this is the thing to try!  Kind of the pinnacle of draft experiences.

Overall: B+
“Game Pieces” per Game: A+++ (12,000 cards to choose from!)
Skill Required: More than I have, but fun nonetheless!
Wide Appeal: D

p.s. For those who are familiar with Magic, I have drafted a blue-black Time Vault combo deck, a blue-black-red Storm combo deck, and today I drafted a black-blue aggro-control deck.  I was very close to drafting an Elves deck which Aaron ended up drafting, too.

Thanks to Kyle Boddy to introducing me to it, and Brian David-Marshall and Randy Buehler for making in-person drafts possible with WotC folk!

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Rotisserie and the Highly Enfranchised

We often discuss the differences between lightly and heavily enfranchised players with respect to Magic, and also our new players and our “people we wish were players” audiences.  But it’s always amazing to me that Magic has such depth that it can support people who have been playing for 15+ years.  What sort of consequences does that sort of longevity have?

Take, for example, this activity related to Magic I am currently participating in: we are taking all 11,000 cards in Magic (one of each, essentially) and drafting in a predetermined order on a Google docs spreadsheet until we each have 75 cards.  Then on Sunday we are going to meet in a bar and battle each other with decks constructed of these cards.

It is amazing to me that Magic is robust enough a game to support this kind of activity.  Our current set on release, Magic 2011, is a set designed to be appealing to newer players.  The eight of us drafting are taking cards from over 50 such expansions and are furiously constructing strategies with them, some of which are totally new and some of which are based upon some of the many years of professional level gaming with Magic.

What a game.

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