Argothian Treehouse
Andy Van Zandt



Card Price Guide

MTG Fan Articles
Single Card Strategy 
Deck Tips & Strategies 
Tourney Reports 
Peasant Magic 
Featured Articles

Featured Writers
The Dragon's Den
Rumblings From The Ass
The Heretic's Sermon
Through The Portal
DAB: Oh My!
The Argothian Treehouse

Deck Garage
Aaron's School

Message Board 
Magic League

Contact Us

Pojo's Book Reviews



Argothian Treehouse

with Andy Van Zandt

Small Rants

This is me complaining about a bunch of little stuff, some of which may
have to do with magic. If you're not interested, don't read it ;)

First off, although I do welcome any input about my articles, keep in mind
I'm writing based on the Pro Tour Qualifier (PTQ) metagame. I try to be
current, I try not to sound like a complete scrub, but I'm really not
looking for feedback on what changes you would make to have the deck be good
in group games or other unrelated mediums. In addition, I loathe type 2,
I rarely keep current with it other than to netdeck it the week before
regionals/nationals, and I can't offer much advice in that particular
department. I'll try, but I certainly won't garauntee the advice will be
any good.

Second thing I want to harp on is Magic Online. I know how much a game
hosting server costs, and how much bandwidth costs (you have a computer,
you can go price it yourself), and I know that only an infinitesimally
small amount of the cards actually get converted into rl cards. Very often
the cards have far more value online than they would if you sac'd an online
set for a rl one. Therefore, Wizards is trying to cover server, bandwidth,
and perhaps tech support/update fees (I don't think the adepts get paid rl
money, though I could be mistaken). To cover these expenses, they issue
digital cards for cash. Non-existent products, a comparitively small
number of 1's and 0's. No production costs (cardboard, ink, presses,
manpower), No R&D costs since those are already covered when sets are put
out in cardboard. Very few other costs that I can even at a stretch come up
with. So theoretically, they are raking in large amounts of cash for
issuing their pseudo-cards and fake-dollars (tickets) and running automated
tournaments. And then they gimp up the prize support on constructed
tourneys? I simply don't understand what major accounting error they could
have feasibly made to not be able to more than cover their costs. How much
more does it cost them to give out an extra box per big tourney? Very
little, to my reasoning, it's just some more 1's and 0's that in all
likelyhood will not be converted to cardboard. So why hurt the secondary
economy so much, and make it less fun to play some swiss rounds? I can get
my playtesting done on apprentice if I need an online magic fix that badly,
it's not that hard to get a group of intelligent people together to draft
with, and it doesn't cost me any money. Magic online with such a
drastically damaged secondary economy ceases to be of interest to me. Plus
I simply don't relish the idea of playing 11 rounds of swiss for 24 packs.

Speaking of online games, does anybody play any online mmorpg's (such as
everquest, asheron's call, or ultima online)? My drug of choice is a game
called Tibia. It's free unless you want a premium account, and you can
play for several years without having completed all the non-premium content.
Now Tibia, like any online community, has it's share of jerks. Like any
offline community, for that matter. This is my small bit of advice for
those of you who are stressing over the jerks in your online or offline
community, at your local comic shop, ptq, school, or favorite hunting
grounds in your game of choice: You're not playing the game because of the
jerks, you're probably playing the game because of the nice people; just
put aside the hostility towards the mean people, it won't do you any good,
and play your game. Hope that makes sense for at least one person out there

That's it for now, since this article didn't have much to do with the
extended PTQ season at all, feel free to shoot me an email on any subject.
If you've got an interesting idea or question, I may include the email in a
future article ;)

You can reach Andy at:

Copyright 2001

Magic the Gathering is a Registered Trademark of Wizards of the Coast.
This site is not affiliated with Wizards of the Coast and is not an Official Site.