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Well, some unicorns can fly…

May 30, 2012

So, rummaging around the house I found an ancient artifact from the late 90’s, a “Portal” demo pack for Magic: the Gathering.  This was from a trip to GenCon UK, where I was part of a team tasked with demonstrating the basics of the game using this mini-game crammed into a booster pack.  For that weekend we sold our souls and had, if truth be told, quite a lot of fun being the “Portal Pixies”.

The pack contained two mini Magic decks, each of 12 cards and containing land and creatures only.  One was red-while-green and one black-blue.  The game was a quick 5-life duel which worked pretty well overall.

So, we cracked the cards out, Miss B chose to play the red-white-green deck, and we were off.  She got the hang of playing land and summoning creatures.  The intricacies of attacking and defending (trying to work out what happens when a 2/3 creature meets a 3/2 creature) resulted in an “I’m a bit confused!”, but we got through the game with Miss B’s massed goblin (well, two of them plus a minotaur) attack finally finishing me off.

Back in the 90’s I had a mixed relationship with Magic.  I felt it was a good game, but where most people I knew were wanting to track new expansions and play in sanctioned tournaments, this left me and my casual approach to play way behind, with my two-colour, theoretically fun-to-play, kitchen sink deck that quickly lost every time.  I gave up on that and dabbled in a couple of lower profile CCGs and, until now, haven’t played Magic in well over a decade.  It’s still a decent game, though I gather that the official releases have steadily got more and more complicated.  Maybe we’ll pick up an intro pack or two and play within the family a bit, but I don’t know.  Miss B certainly enjoyed this play through, and we can always limit ourselves to using the simplest available cards for now, and then introduce more challenging stuff later…

The verdict from Miss B (aged nearly 5½): “I liked it but it was a bit confusing.”

The game: Magic: The Gathering “Portal” mini-promo decks  (Wizards of the Coast), 2 players, aged dunno.

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