Not everybody has Billy Madison’s knack for charming introductions, so I’ll stick to the script. My name is Arlo, and I’ll be running herd over the audio portion of In addition I’ll be writing for the site, and interacting with all you folks out there in some fun and unique ways. In lieu of the traditional Magic introduction, here’s a short piece that hopefully illustrates my feelings on EDH. 

 The Great Taste Debate: Or how I learned to stop worrying and embrace the Norn.

That guy. At some point all of us have deserved this dreaded moniker. Chairs squeak around you as people crane their heads, brows furrowed as to what could be the issue at that table in the corner.

“Oh, that’s the card I was telling you about at lunch yesterday. It’s in Italian so he had to look it up on his phone. Once I realized what Invoca Preguidizio did, I picked up and called my mom for a ride.”

“I wonder if he treats his GF like this.”

Commander is unique in Magic for being governed primarily by the boundaries of taste. Where else are win-cons frowned upon? Steering that fine line can be a difficult, and sometimes frustrating process; on one end of Commander’s spectrum you have the above-mentioned “That Guy”, a person whose attitude during play can be aptly summed up by Nathan Diaz in this .GIF from his fight with Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone:


Don’t feel bad Cowboy, I feel the same way when Ravages of War resolves…but what of Timmy’s feelings? What do power gamers think about flavor-centric EDH play?

Another UFC .GIF, displaying a close approximation of what durdling looks like:


So…let’s talk practical solutions to the ever widening gap between competitive and casual. If you’re Sheldon Menery it means going tutorless, or “Embracing the Chaos.” While this approach can introspectively help one with power gaming, being unable to search for answers will often leave you up shit creek with Rod of Ruin for a paddle. Others have taken self-flagellation in deck design many steps further. Ever seen Homarid tribal? Licid tribal? If you encounter them, it is best to follow the path laid by Mr. Chappelle:


This kind of backlash has to be rooted in legitimate complaint, right?  Well, sort of. Saying that you don’t enjoy playing against decks like Zur the Enchanter is fine; it’s banning the card, shunning the player, or (if you are said player) insisting on trotting out that same broken deck game after game that poses problems.

I propose a small solution: anytime you’re suspected to be “That Guy” in a game, take a look at Tobias Funke and ask yourself if you feel any similarity:

cross 2

If so, Jason Alt has a great 75% rule for you.

Back to Business, introducing Scroll Rack

“Scroll Rack” is the name of our new Twitter mailbag here at GDC. Throughout the week, I’ll dig for your best submissions, and every Thursday afternoon we’ll be releasing that week’s mailbag, a no-holds-barred discussion centering on whatever YOU want to talk about!  Simply include #ScrollRack in your Tweet to be considered.  Anything goes, so ask away.

To get the ball rolling, our first edition of Scroll Rack focuses on tough card choices. Can’t decide between Orim’s Thunder and Aura Mutation in that Marath deck? I’ve got you covered! Submit the general you’re using for your deck, and the cards you’re trying to decide between.  I’ll do the rest.  Tune in for the first edition starting next week.


Talking Heads: What if Howard Stern played EDH?

His general would be Starke of Rath.

Podcasts! GDC will be home to two amazing podcasts, starting in mid-August. Releasing on the first and third weeks of each month will be our flagship program – The General Damage Control Podcast. This show will be an outlet for the creative minds here at GDC to go in-depth without having to type a shit-ton. In addition to the O.G.s like Cassidy, Dave and Mr. P, we’ve got several new voices lending perspective, and our potential guest list is shaping up quite well.  Stay tuned!

Also on tap for your listening pleasure is The King and Arlo Show. Releasing on the second and fourth weeks of each month, The King and Arlo Show (or “K&A” if you nasty) is your source for irreverent discussion, outlandish proclamation and general tomfoolery – all in the name of EDH.

Some of you may be wondering:  If you’re Arlo, who is The King?

Good question. If you think Mr. P is opinionated, inflate your expectations. ‘Nuff said.

Going Forward

I’m starting to get settled in my home at GDC. People are nice. Passion and enthusiasm abound.

If you want to talk I’m on Twitter @KingnArlo, or e-mail me at

Don’t forget about #ScrollRack!


Thanks everybody.  Let’s fill the tank with unleaded and cruise…