Welcome to Geek 101: Magic: The Gathering.  Today’s article is going to focus on what Magic: the Gathering is, and on my history of the game.

“Magic is a tradable card game (TCG) where you build your collection of cards by trading with your friends, assembling decks of cards, and battling against an opponent and their deck. You cast powerful spells and summon monstrous creatures aiming to knock your opponent down from 20 life to zero. The game is constantly changing as new cards are released throughout the year. As you get new cards, whether from these new sets or through trading with your friends, you can continuously update your decks and discover a whole new game!”   from the Magic the gathering website

This game was released in 1993, and has been a worldwide sensation since its inception.  There are currently over 15,000 different cards that can be used in a variety of playable formats.  Not only can you play with actual cards, you can play virtually online.  There are tournaments across the globe where thousands of players vie to be on the next Pro Tour.  Throughout these articles I will go more in depth on the history of the game, the formats available to play, building a deck, going to a tournament, and other wonderful things about this game.

Now I would like to share my history with the game…..

The year is 1995. I was at a debate tournament competing.  While waiting for rounds to start, I found some friends who were playing Magic in the hallways.  I sat and watched.  Intrigued, I asked if someone could show me how to play.  A few weeks later I was buying my own cards. I found a place in town to play; the local Internet Café. There I met people that I can say are still my best friends.

Eventually, I started playing in tournaments at my local cardshop. There I met many other players, who are still friends. The tournaments were weekly and you could win prizes! The first time I won, I was thrilled. And I earned the respect of the others as an equal.   

A few years later,  I was in college where I’d play once in a while with a girl in my dorm.  That was huge for me.  I hadn’t really known many other girls that played.   When I came home for the weekends, I’d play Friday and Saturday nights at my friend’s house.  There were regularly 4 of us that played.  We had started playing a bit more competitively by going to tournaments called Pro-Tour Qualifiers, or PT-Q as they were known.  It was after one of those tournaments that I started dating one of the guys I played with.

Let’s fast forward again to around 2005.  Dating turned into marriage.  We still played Magic quite a bit.  We are still friends with the same group.  One of the friends that we played with actually opened a game store.  So we now had a new place to play.  We were pretty excited when they had first opened the store.

One more leap in time to today 2015.  We really only play commander.  (This will be explained in a later post.) It’s been almost a year since our last competitive event.  A month or so ago my son asked dad for Pokémon cards.  Friends at school had “shown” him how to play.  He’s in kindergarten, so I’m not certain of what he was taught.  Dad says no.  If you want to learn a game, I’ll teach you how to play Magic.  So here I am 20 years later, and my husband and I are teaching our son how to play Magic: The Gathering.

That’s my history in a nutshell.  I love to talk about it, and I look forward to talking more with you! Leave a comment with what you want to learn about MTG.