Editorial – Descent Into MTG Madness
One of Play Unplugged’s esteemed partners right now is MTG Madness. Like us, they offer articles on Magic: the Gathering. As your humble servant and M:tG writer, I’m going to break down for you what MTG Madness has to offer.
Like professionals. Like . . . these guys have some seriously high-caliber talent writing and playing for them. Play Unplugged is a general interest tabletop gaming site (catering to all types of tabletop games) that graciously lets me gush over the greatest unplugged game ever made. We’re not knee-deep in the metagame. Every so often, I’ll have a revelation about a prerelease, or even attend a Grand Prix — but Pro Tour and stiff competition are admittedly not our focus.
If you dig that pro insight, perhaps you’d like to read what this year’s Magic World Champion, Shahar Shenhar, has to say about the game. Or the man who created and stars on Snapcaster Mage, Tiago Chan. Or, you can look at this past weekend at Pro Tour Theros, where the two final contenders in the championship match were both rocking MTG Madness. That’s . . . about as Professional Play as it’s possible to get!
Have you ever checked out the Madness Facebook Page? It’s where their fun loving side really shines. It’s also where their homegrown riddles can be answered and shared for a shot at store credit. “On the Draw” offers a kind-of hastily redrawn art from a Magic card, while “On the Play” gives us a rebus-like puzzle to figure out, and in either case, it’s worth a shot at getting some great cards for great prices. In addition, you can use their store promotion codes (Click our banners!) for substantial discounts — right now, there’s free shipping on any order above $5. Shop around; see what you can find. And have some fun on Facebook while you knock the price down!
(P.S.: Be sure to “Like” Play Unplugged while you’re on Facebook, if you haven’t already. Your heart will thank you.)
3. Unique Style
As a Magic writer, I tend to be conscious of the quality of game writing on the web. While I think Play Unplugged has some of the most interesting writing in the industry, we dip our toes into a lot of places. The folks at Madness are die-hard about their game. What I find refreshing about the articles on MTG Madness is that they come from a place of strategic wisdom, but don’t usually read like a term paper on the game. Take, for example, this recent piece that just details which cards were picked for a Theros draft.
This piece is simple, a monologue with pictures. Almost stream-of-consciousness. What I appreciate about it is the author’s recognition of clear draft strategy, coupled with a sheer love of the game that comes out in the unpolished, blog-style piece.
- On Curse of the Swine: in newer formats i want more experience with the rares, and i also love pigs.
- On Sea God’s Revenge: Holy Thassa! What is this Overrun doing here? Sea God’s Revenge has to be the best uncommon in the format, the text is actually “You win the game, then scry 1 for the rub-ins”.
- On Shipwreck Singer, one of the more amazing Theros draft cards, just one word: Seriously?!
I feel like I’m sitting in the room during the draft, watching a thought bubble above the author’s head. MTG Madness likes to make sure you get a natural piece from its authors, without necessarily spit-shining them. It kind of caught me off guard, being pretty anal-retentive about my editing, but the style has really grown on me. I think it’s endearing, and it helps me dive into the strategic bits. I think you will get that sense, too.
So check them out!
Click the links, browse the store, and hopefully you’ll see what I saw: that MTG Madness belongs on your list of sites to check each week, along with all your other major game portals — like Play Unplugged.