A Magical Huffalump Resides Here: The Power of Association

A Magical Huffalump Resides Here

My name is Ed, I am a programmer. Just another dude with another blog. I like MTG, Open Source (more towards FREE software). I like sports, and eventually I hope to do business and do good for the world in general. This blog is gonna be about Magic The Gathering. Decklists and snippets will be posted here. It may lead somewhere or nowhere, as with all things arcane, that was bloody obvious =)

Friday, November 15, 2013

The Power of Association

The power of association

I wanted the title for today to be :

The Poison of Association.

Since its all negative now =)

But then I remembered the knife cuts both ways and it was positive association that brought me back to magic.

I love poison.

Not because it was awesome. But because it was awesome to win with it.

Because it was an alternate solution.

Because flavourwise it was a win. The inevitability of death, with nothing you can do about it. Just like poison.

Because it was hard to win with it.

Yes I played poison in a time when it was the mockery of mechanics.

The poisoners available at the time were small and dealt only one counter on a successful hit on your opponent.

It was impossible to win with it, barring some combo
(which is also the reason I don't consider combo LD or combo poison the true reflection of those strategies, you died to the combo not to poison or LD, your opponent could have used any bombo, it was a nonbo for me lol)

Then Visions came along, together with Alliances. Poisoners with evasion was available.

The brewer in me simmered.

I looked for cheap fat (this was a time before the power level of creatures creeped to today's highs). Grollub was my main man.

Together with Pernicious deed, I was a happy bunny in  poison land.

That was one of the better moments of Magic for me. There were others, like Argothian Wurm with the goblin that destroyed X lands from weather light. But that one was not quite as consistent.

Part of the fun in poison was that, you can always count on the naysayers to throw a challenge. Many claimed poison will never be back.

Many were wrong =)

Poison came back after 10 years. So to all who keep saying something will never be back. I wish you well =)

What I am driving at with all that drivel was this: What brought me back to magic was the positive association I made from my experience with poison to Magic.

Maro, brought back poison in a big way. Scars, Beseiged and New Phyrexia. A poisoner's wet dream. It did not have to be as strong as it was but I am not complaining. I do not believe it to be overpowered. It is no stronger than a blitz deck. The problem is not with the mechanic, but with the available ways to counter it. (this is also the reason for GOOD counters to exist, but that is a fight for another day).

As an aside, I like it when Maro makes sets =) Urza Saga was one of the highs in Magic for me. He is always pushing the envelope, nothing is vapid and tasteless when you give him free rein.

Anyways it was the positive association that brought me back to magic with NPH.

What took me out of magic in the first place? Mostly it was the greed of the shops. It was very negative. WOTC looked like it was trying to sell as many blocks as ever. They experimented with Lorwyn Morningtide Shadowmoor Eventide. Yes 4 sets. Instead of the usual three. It was big small Big small instead of Big  Small Small. Of course marketing will tell you its two small blocks. Until you consider all blocks in the year =) It was about the time of lorwyn that pack prices at the shop I frequented was jacked up. Yes they were price gouging on the packs.

I quit.

Currrently Magic is delving into those same waters. Modern Masters was the first blow. There was no goodwill in that set. It was price gouger's paradise. Then Vaults. And now Commander. WOTC did say that Commander 2013 is not limited. However shops can only order in sets of five, and they can only order if there is demand. Which means either the shops sits with some Commander decks which won't move and just bite the bullet and order more, or they sit and try to gouge as much as they can with what they have before ordering more. The situation in Singapore is a little like that right now. Maybe it will change in 2 months, I hope so. In any case, the damage is already done WOTC. Even if the product is not limited. It is made to look limited and price gouging has occured. This is also happening (albeit less dramatic) with the Holiday Box product. This is negative association. I am not quitting yet. But I am slowing down my purchases. For every 300 I have to spend on Commander, I will abstain that amount from every LGS I normally buy from before I buy the gorged product. (I do buy quite alot). That is actually quite a fun endeavour at the moment and besides if the impulse buy effect wears off by the time I decide to buy, I save some ;) its win win.

I am tired of Magic.

And I am putting the blame squarely on price gorging by LGS and retailers.

It is the absolute lack of goodwill that is the bile.

It is the fact that you are taken for a fool and paying for a jackasses's xmas that makes it insulting.

Sure its all good for the LGS and retailers. At the player's expense. I am tired of it. Yes Magic is a luxury item, so yes I may decide with my dollar eventually and say:"I absolutely agree. I have better things to do" =)

Oh why is this negative association? well when I said I buy less it is mostly the random packs I buy so... the other purchases become collateral damage for Commander 2013 or any other product that is being price gorged. .... well that and if I do quit. But I doubt. I think.


Well the more I think about, its the whole tiredness that is associated, not just with the gorged product, but with Magic in general, even though the trigger was the Commander product. I have to convince myself to go fnm nowadays. I am so tired of all things Magic. Thats is what I meant by negative association. (well at least until I come in and edit again I guess lol)

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