Well, this is comically awkward.
While at the LGS last night, regular EDH player Santo pointed out that I appear to be cursed by an inability to put up Monday content. Looking at the last few months, he’s right; the start of the week is a literal train-wreck. I don’t know what it is.
In any case, here I am. Yes, this is at work. There is supposedly going to be a technician showing up at my house to exchange what seems to be a blown modem any time in here, but according to reports, he hasn’t even given the “Hey…I’m on the way there now” call yet.
I’m not holding my breath.
(In other news, it turns out that when you live in an area with a questionable power grid, it’s a good idea to use surge protectors on everything – computers, televisions, and DSL modems.
Two out of three ain’t bad, right?)
So anyway, I realized after the games last night that I’ve been slowly compiling and revising my list of EDH Do’s and Don’ts since the last time I posted on the subject, and I realized I never looked at how colored it probably is based on my personal experiences the last time around. This revelation is based in part by the reaction that I and many people in my metagame shared when reading the StarCityGames.com Commander Card of the Week in the Select newsletter this past week. It was written by my Dear Azami co-writer Sean McKeown, and (spoiler alert!) featured the positive virtues of the card Ruination:
Now, two things come to light.
One is that Ruination can suck it.
The other is that Sean is a player and a writer that shares a format and plenty of close ties to my own personal EDH path, yet he and I are existing on wildly different planes of 99-card existence.
So I got to wondering…how different is my list from the rest of the world?
Cass’ EDH List of Do’s and Don’ts
DO – Be sure to indicate when you’re passing the turn. You played a fetchland, and a Cultivate, and now you’re shuffling your deck. It is likely obvious to you that you’re done for the turn, but the rest of us do not read minds. It’s an EDH courtesy flush.
DO – Use shortcuts where possible. If there’s no d-bag blue player at your table known for Stifle-ing fetchlands and countering turn three Cultivates, go ahead and let us know you’re getting a Forest to cast it with, and do it all at once. We don’t mind, because it saves us time.
DON’T – Stifle fetchlands our counter early mana acceleration. If you’re going to do that sort of thing to a person, at least have the courtesy to buy them dinner first.
DO – Remember that late-game plays like the above situations are fine when they strategically help you to win – or prevent you from losing. That seems okay. Strip Mine-ing someone effectively out of the game on turn three does not qualify here, and playing draw-go while missing early land drops is not fun. (If you kept a two-lander and this is happening, buy yourself dinner.)
DON’T – Cast Swords to Plowshares targeting someone’s Consecrated Sphinx when he or she also has Notion Thief in play and the player between the two of you happens to be playing Memnarch as a general. A few turn’s worth of that player drawing a bunch of cards is worth watching them lose to their own cards in spectacular fashion. Card advantage isn’t card advantage when you’re dead, after all. (Nothing but love, Santo!)
DO – Follow the following hierarchy when selecting the appropriate version of a card that will be your general:
· Set foil
· Altered copy
· FTV or Commander version
· Prerelease version
· Non-foil regular version
DO – Use the following hierarchy when selecting a coaster for your beer or a nifty way to wallpaper your bathroom:
· Oversized Commander cards
DON’T – Play infinite combos, unless you do so very early in a game. If you hook up a turn three Palinchron/High Tide into some massive draw spell to deck everyone, that’s fine; I can shuffle up for another game you’re not in and barely miss a beat. If you bust it out after an hour-and-a-halfs’ worth of a (previously) good game, it would be wise to have worn shoes suitable for running away from an angry mob that day.
DO – Feel totally free to play that deck if you let me know in advance. I’m happy to bust out something that can stand up to a competitive deck and do some serious battle, but I don’t like getting caught bringing an “Omnath’s Stupid World Of Alternate Win Conditons – Now With 100% More Darksteel Reactor!” deck to a full-contact MMA exhibition.
DO – Ask if you can read my cards. I’m likely stoked that I’ve found something to play that makes you scratch your head in confusion, and it’s cool to learn about cards you’ve never seen before. I *love* being in your shoes.
DON’T – Reach over and just take a card from my hand/deck/graveyard/battlefield/command zone without asking. I bite. Hard.
DO – Try Emperor out the next time you’ve got five friends around for a game. Teamwork in EDH is an extra helping of social – it’s the Magic equivalent of peanut butter cups. Awesome wrapped in another layer of awesome.
DON’T – Put your food, drink, or feet on the table while the game is happening. I want none of these things on my cards for any length of time.
DO – Move your s!*t off of the damn table. I’m not your mother.
DON’T – Play terrible proxies. There is a special place in Hell reserved for the person who lets someone else go through the motions of setting up an awesome series of plays, put a plan into motion, and then get totally crushed when they point to the Revised Forest with a bad Sharpie squiggle on it that they had stacked with their other lands and exclaim, “Blow up the world with my Oblivion Stone?”
DO – Play someone else’s deck, and have someone else play yours. Share notes afterward. You’ll learn a ton about deckbuilding and gain some awesome ideas from the process.
DON’T – Make spiteful plays when you’re about to be taken out of a game. Dead men don’t tell tales, or Strip Mine Kor Havens.
. . . . .
Okay, folks…that’s good enough for now. I could probably keep going for days, assuming my internet works when I get home or I decide to work some serious overtime.
What about you? What’s on your list? Which of mine are solid, and which are sheer crap? (All of them is a valid answer either way. I can take it.)
Hit up the comments and let us know what’s what.
See you all soon-