Newbie Chronicles 1: Newbie Buys a Deck

Discussion in 'General CPA Stuff' started by Astral, Jun 18, 2003.

  1. Astral New Member

    Ok, so one week ago I decide I'm tired of being a Battletech CCG player (since I'm the only one I know with a deck, and no one else plays it), so I go online and start digging into the rules on WotC's site. Now I go into a local game store buggering them about Magic. About 90 minutes later, I leave the store with an Onslaught deck box, some interesting memories, and a vague direction of where I'm going. Enter eBay. Leave $28. Leave six days. Enter a box of 500 assorted cards. Now I'm completely clueless. I downloaded Magic Suitcase, and I've been adding and sorting all my newfound cards, but I've run into a spot of trouble.

    First, does it matter what edition I'm using? I have cards from 28 different editions at present (and I've only gotten 264 cards entered). Mostly from Onslaught at the moment (especially with my local purchases thus far). Now my understanding is that the legal cards can only be drawn from Onslaught and up, but if this count is accurate I now own cards from 25 other editions. But I notice references and trades are still being made to cards from all other editions. I find this somewhat confusing... is it just that, "legal" only applies to tournament play, or did I just waste money on all these other cards? :confused:

    Lastly, in my sorting I've come across a small pile (I'm guessing about 80) of white bordered cards, most of which I don't have any indication as to editions. What's the difference between white and black borders, and how the hell do I add them to my collection in MS if I don't have an edition on them (example: Animate Artifact, a blue card that looks like it's from a very early edition... I've narrowed it down to, "SM" or, "RV", but I don't know which is which, since they're both identical in every other respect)?

    I ask for your forgiveness for my n00bism. :)

  2. EricBess Active Member

    RV is probably "Revised". I'm not sure about "SM" off the top of my head.

    The Base set through 5th edition were all printed without expansion symbols. Also, all of the base sets were white bordered.

    All of the expansion sets were black bordered, so everything you have that has a black border should also have an expansion. Sounds like that is the case.

    As far as which edition of the base set the old white bordered stuff comes from, it probably doesn't really matter. There are some subtle differences, but I'm not really sure what they are off the top of my head.

    As far as what is "legal", that depends on what format you play. For casual play, you can usually just play anything you want, just make sure your opponent knows you are just playing a casual deck.

    Standard, or "type 2", only allows cards from the current base set (7th edition at the moment) and the most recent 2 expansion "blocks". In this case, everything from Oddessy on. Also, if a card was reprinted in a legal set, you can go ahead and use the older card.

    I don't play much Extended, but that's another popular format and I believe that Tempest and on are legal, though someone will need to correct me if that is not right.
  3. Reverend Love New Member

    Astral first off welcome to the world of Magic. It's a great game with almost limitless creative play potential. You've also stumbled onto a pretty good site for "newbs". There's no elitism found here unlike others.

    First thing to do is probably find a few good reference sites.

    This place is THE best for looking up which sets are legal in the varying formats. Most players young and old generally stick to either Type 2, Block, or Extended. However there a few of us whom just like to build with WHATEVER we've got and go at it (This is Type 1).

    Is probably the premier resource for researching cards. It has a simple intuitive search engine, which is regularly updated with recent set additions. The more you build decks, the more you'll find yourself using it.

    Both these websites I personally like to use for ideas, rumors or information on Magic in general. If you've got the urge to give Tournaments a try Star City is probably more of what your looking for. However if you just in it for the fun..then you've probably come to the right place.

    Here's where I pull up my overalls, take a hit off my old corn pipe and give you some advice. Being a new player there's a few things, which you need to accomplish before even THINKING of entering a tournament.

    1. You MUST learn the rules. No this doesn't require you paralleling the knowledge of a judge. But it does greatly assist you when playing and constructing a deck. What appears to be a loosing situation can quickly be turned around if you simply know the rules.

    2. Familiarize yourself with the five colors. Learning their strengths and weaknesses is key. This may sound strange but they haven't changed a whole lot from when I started playing a LONG time ago. This will assist you when both playing and again deck construction.

    3. Discover players whom you can play both seriously and casually with….and most importantly who you like. A good group can offer you a challenge in play as well as insight for future deck improvement. My group of raggedy veterans have taken one of my pooper creations and turned it into a banned deck all in one gaming session.

    4. Purchase cards intelligently. Don't buy something because every website says it's going to be killer, nor because you've been beaten by it. Purchase the card because it's GOING INTO A DECK! I cannot stress this enough. I've seen dudes blow 200 dollars on cards only to be left with a rag tag assortment of non-symbiotic stuff. Yes your collection will grow slowly but it will be a powerful extremely useful one.

    There's a lot more then just owning good cards and having a deck that goes into winning tournaments.
  4. Nightstalkers Creature — Nightstalker

    Do worry me Battletech junky, learning comes with time.

    Your woes will succeed when you finally accieve your goal.

    Remember your first time in Battletech? it will all be as simple when you finally learn the ropes.
  5. train The Wildcard!!!...

    Beginning with Unlimited, all portions of the base set are whit bordered... Alpha, and Beta respectively - which you probably got none of, unless you got really lucky, were both black bordered.

    Alpha's corners are more rounded than beta's, and the difference is very noticeable.

    Unlimited has a very dark coloring on it(can sometimes be "fuzzy"), as well as a bevel going around the text/art portion of the card.

    Revised removed this bevel, turning it into a single line, and has lighter coloring. The only text at the bottom left of these cards is: Illus.,(copyright symbol),then the artist's name

    4th edition has the fine-print copyright text at the bottom beginning with Copyright 1995 Wizards... and also has darker coloring than revised, but the quality of the coloring is much better than Unlimited.

    5th edition brought forth the copyright 93-(year made) fine print.

    6th edition has the "VI" for it's expansion, and is on white borders.

    7th edition has the jagged "7"...

    As for the expansions - Chronicles is a White bordered set that has expansion symbols on it borrowed from other sets. The copyright on those is 1995.

    Arabian Nights has the scimitar for an expansion symbol.
    Antiquities has the Anvil
    Legends has the top of a column(like those found on buildings)
    Dark has the Crescent Moon
    Fallen Empires has a 3-point crown
    Ice Age has the snowflake
    Homelands has a 3-spoked wheel
    Alliances has a flag/banner
    Mirage has the Palm Tree
    Visions has a fancy looking "V"
    Weatherlight has the Open book
    Tempest has a storm cloud with lightning coming out the bottom of it - this also looks like a brain stem.
    Stronghold is the picture of an arched window pane
    Exodus is a bridge, and the first to use colored expansion symbols(black, silver, and gold - to determine rarity, and is also the first numbered set)
    Urza's Saga has the 2 cogwheels intertwined
    Urza's Legacy has the hammer
    Urza's destiny has the Flask
    Mercadian Masques has the mask
    Nemesis has a scimitar looking axe
    Prophecy has the 3-piece gem/ore
    Invasion has a shield
    Planeshift has the swirling circle
    Apocalypse has a mask with pointed ends at the bottom of it
    Odyssey has the snowglobe looking object
    Torment has a dragon looking circle
    Judgement has the scales - like an alchemist would use
    Onslaught has the 4-legged M
    Legions has a shield with weapons coming out of it
    Scourge is the funky looking new flash symbol

    There were special sets that had other symbols...

    At, if you click on products you can find more info about those sets there... some of those special sets are white-bordered.

    And that's my take on the subject...

    And while putting stuff in your suitcase - if you find a Black Lotus, I'll trade it off of you if you don't want it...;)

    Welcome to Magic.
  6. Astral New Member

    Thanks peeps. :D:D:D
  7. Nightstalkers Creature — Nightstalker

    Try downloading Magic Suitcase if your really confused about the mana symbols...

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