Getting Started in Magic the Gathering

Magic the Gathering is bloody expensive.  If you’re just getting started in tournament play it can get very expensive very quickly.

Here are a few tips to help you get started in the game without spending £100’s.

I also have a few survival tips 🙂

Check Legality

Not every card is legal for every tournament. At this moment in time, Innistrad, Scars of Mirrodin, Mirrodin Beseiged, New Phyrexia and 12th edition are legal for standard. Buying cards from other sets is a waste of money if you intend to play standard (the most common tournament format.)

You could push this a step further and say that Scars of Mirrodin, Mirrodin Beseiged and New Phyrexia will rotate out in 2012 so less attention should be paid to those sets.

If you want to know what is and isn’t legal, either look at Google, as your local tournament organiser or leave a comment and I’ll reply ASAP

Pick a Colour or Style

How do you play? Do you like to play big green stompy creatures? Small white weenies? Counterspells? Removal? Burn?

Deciding which strategy, which quite often your choice of colour, will remove 80% of the potential card pool from you to choose from.

Buy an Event Deck or Intro Pack

Event Decks contain a fully complete deck ready to play. These are not terrible decks either, you can win with them.

If an Event Deck matches your strategy and Colour choice then pick one up and add to it with other cards. This is a great way to pick up a tournament deck very very cheap.

Intro Packs are pre constructed decks but are often not as powerful.

Buy a Fat Pack

A Fat Pack contains loads of boosters and lands. They’re random so it’s more of a ‘hit and hope’ approach. An Event Deck + a Fat Pack is not a bad idea at all.

Buy Common and Uncommon Sets

Some online traders offer 4 of each common and uncommon from a set for around £30-40. This is a very good way to get most of the cards you need to build decks, or to flush out your collection.

These sets combined with the Event Deck of your choice can give you a very cheap and easy way to make a very good deck.

Survival Tips!

  • Buy deck protectors to keep you cards in mint condition (Helps keep their value)
  • Put your spare cards in a folder (For the same reason)
  • Buy a dice to track your life total (Or beads, pen + paper etc)
  • As in life, most people are nice but some are not, be aware of cheats
  • Also look for people who trade cards unfairly (Never be afraid to ask for a 2nd opinion)

Lastly and most importantly. Be prepared to lose. Your £20 event deck might be good, but you will be playing people that have decks worth £300+ and have been playing for years…

What you can do is learn from any mistakes you made, learn from cards in your deck that weren’t very good, look for cards you don’t own that you could have used. Ask your opponent what they thought of your deck after the game, most people are willing to help. (Most Magic players are VERY opinionated! :))

Feel free to add to his advice or ask any questions 🙂


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2 Responses to Getting Started in Magic the Gathering

  1. Luke Atkins says:

    Hey I’m wondering whether or not to get Into magic. I played yugioh but quit because the game just became so stupid. And am currently playing Cardfight Vanguard. I have been looking at magic for a long time but I’m unsure if I like the mana system or not.
    Can anyway lay down some positive opinions about magic and why I should get into it?? =) thank you!!

  2. Jesta says:

    I played YuGiOh too for a while but I’ve played magic since 1994. If you can find a freindly group of people that know the rules inside out and you can get to play with them regularly I would suggest Magic as a game to play. It’s faily complex so playing often with good people will help a lot!

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