Ten Minute Magic (March 2016) – MTG Twitch, Match Draws, and MTG GP Coverage Kickstarter

Join Joseph Dunlap and Ben Cottee in this week’s episode of Ten Minute Magic, a weekly podcast format that highlights recent news in the world of Magic: The Gathering and looks at exceptional comments from recent Magic content on the internet.

This is what’s going on in Magic: The Gathering this week…


1. Gaby Spartz Goes Full Time

Last week, Gaby Spartz announced she is taking a sabbatical from the media company Dose, where she has been working for the seven years since leaving college and currently sits on the Board of Directors. She is making this move so she can participate in Twitch streaming and Magic: The Gathering coverage on a full time basis.

The Magic: The Gathering community is excited to see Gaby going full time in this field. Some say this is a reckless move, while others see this as a sign of the opportunities in the gaming world that are worth grasping.


2. “Goblin Token Blocks Serum Visions”

An interesting incident from last weekend’s MOCS was recounted on Reddit in which a match completely bugged out. In response to a graveyard interaction, the match restarted and both players’ timers reset to 25 minutes each. This is a known bug in MTGO and has been recorded on Twitch streams in the past.

Following the match reset, hand mulligans were buggy, an Endless One became invisible, and an Empty the Warrens yielded 3 tokens instead of 6. The invisible Endless One was unblockable as it was impossible to choose as a block target, but a Serum Visions in the player’s graveyard was selectable as a block target. Out of curiosity, the Storm player attempted to block the Serum Visions. Sure enough, the phrase “Goblin token blocks Serum Visions” appeared in the game log.

The Reddit user followed up by saying, “At least I made it through 9 rounds of the MOCS without facing a Myr Superion,” which if you recall from last week’s episode, is currently bugged on Magic Online.


3. Brian Braun-Duin: A Draw Should Be Worth 0 Points

Following Eric Froehlich’s article that brought to light the practice of intentional draws and concessions at high level play, and a rebuttal of sorts from Ross Merriam on StarCityGames Select, Brian Braun-Duin came up with his own solution this week: make draws worthless. The best summary of this article comes from the author himself:

“Removing the value from draws wouldn’t create a perfect system, but it would create a system where players play more matches of Magic, play those matches faster, and play to win those matches. Instead of navigating tiebreaker math, players can just stick to navigating their matches of Magic instead. That’s the kind of change that should be drawn up.” – Brian Braun-Duin

Is a change like this possible? Would habit and “the way things have always been” stop such a change? Do you think this is a viable solution?


4. Aaron Fortythe: Restricting Eye of Ugin is Not the Plan

Aaron Forsythe sent out a tweet today that hinted at the upcoming Banned & Restricted List update. The tweet said: “I’ve had lots of inquiries about restricting cards in Modern instead of banning (probably from Tron players that run one Eye). Not our plan.”

Apparently there has been a lot of questions about whether this would be an alternative to outright banning a problem card, but his wording is interesting – “probably from Tron players that run one Eye” – which makes sense, if you’re a Tron player, it’s in your best interests to not want an Eye of Ugin ban, but for Aaron Forsythe to talk specifically about Eye of Ugin makes us wonder if maybe that’s the direction they’re headed for the upcoming bans.

The general reception to the tweet has been: “Please unban something as well, perhaps a blue control card that costs four mana,” or specifically Jace, the Mind Sculptor. Many players are asking, with the copious amounts of Modern bans in recent years, that cards be allowed to leave the bench and come back into Modern. Occasionally this has happened, the most notable unbanned card being Wild Nacatl.


5. Grand Prix Coverage Kickstarter

On the weekend of May 27-29, there will be two concurrent Magic: The Gathering Grands Prix, one in Manchester, UK and the other in Minneapolis, MN in the US. Under the 2016 coverage schedule, neither are slated to be livestreamed.

GGsLive has started a kickstarter to fund coverage for GP Minneapolis, and they are asking for $20,000 USD. The streaming team will be the normal commentators you would expect, so it feels odd to fund via a kickstarter. This comes after the controversy of shotgun coverage for the SSS earlier in the year, so it’s fair to say the reduced coverage is not going over well in the midst of an eSports explosion.


6. Zac Elsik Takes Down Memorial Tournament

Zac Elsik, friend of Draw 4 Podcast who appeared on this weekend’s episode, snagged a win at the 250 man Hunter Burton Memorial tournament in Dallas with Grixis Control. According to Zac, the payout was “$1200, a sweet watch, and an invite to the next SCG Invitational.”

Congratulations to Zac on a strong finish!


7. Featured Manaleak Articles

Matt Gregory wrote an article this week entitled Top 8 Best Shadows over Innistrad Cards You Need to Pick Up At Your Prereleases. The article received a lot of feedback, and two comments that shared a common thread of thought.

gregory article title

Glenn Angel commented: “Someone needs to write a ‘top common/uncommons’ to play post.”

Alex Curley commented: “Cool breakdown. I wished you took the time to go through commons and uncommons as picks instead for better strategy.”

The first episode of Ten Minute Magic – Diversity in Magic: The Gathering, Mecha Goyf, and Reading the Cards – was released last week and was pleasantly well-received.

tmm article title 3-27

Jack Copestake commented: “Thought this was brilliant and an excellent addition in the UK Magic scene.”

Adrian Thoung wrote a helpful article called How to Teach Magic: The Gathering to New Players in 7 Simple Steps which, which deceptively simple, held true in its points.

adrian article title

Nic Masetti commented: “I have found that when making decks for new players, try and go with a tribal type theme. I taught a friend of mine how to play and most of our games revolved around elves (mono-green) and vampires (mono-black) that obeys the rules of plenty of creatures but it adds the interaction of lords. What made it more fun is it was exceptionally fair, more or less 50/50. That made him want to play over and over as the games were literally always a turn away from one or the other winning.”

Thank you for joining us in the second instalment of Ten Minute Magic. We would love to hear your feedback on the presentation, format, and length – the idea is to run through Magic news and recent article discussions in roughly ten minutes – so please leave a comment with your thoughts and we look forward to hearing from you.

Joseph and Ben

Please let us know what you think below...

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