help getting a complete beginner started please :)

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hi all, so i am brand new to magic, i have only ever played duels of the planeswalkers on my xbox 360, i am hoping to start playing with cards as i would love to but as of yet i have no idea where to start, if you could help me with some questions and give me some advice i would appreciate it.


firstly, i live in liverpool, england and was wondering if there are any local people and places where i can start playing?


secondly, i have no idea what to buy first off, there seem to be loads of different variations of packs to buy, fat packs, booster packs etc, what would you suggest for a complete beginner?, when i play on my xbox i like using the green deck with the big creatures if that helps.


also how often do card decks swap out, for instance if i bought some cards now for magic 13 but they still be usable when magic 14 come out, i hear they are out soon?, do you have to update all your cards every year or so?


would really appreciate any sort of help you could give me.


Thanks.              

To make a long story short, if you play in the standard format, half of the cards rotate out every year. Each summer a core set comes out (e.g. Magic 2013, Magic 2014). Then, in the fall, a new block comes out, that consists of three expansion sets. This block is named after the first expansion set in the block. So, last October, the Return to Ravnica set started the Return to Ravnica block, to which Gatecrash and Dragon's Maze were subsequently added. At the same time, the oldest block in standard rotates out, along with last year's core set. This fall, on September 27, the Theros block will begin when the Theros expansion set is released.


So, currently in standard we have:


Magic 2013 core set
Innistrad block: Innistrad, Dark Ascension, Avacyn Restored
Return to Ravnica block: Return to Ravnica, Gatecrash, Dragon's Maze


Nothing rotates out in July when Magic 2014 is released. The rotation occurs September 27. At that point, the entire Innistrad block and Magic 2013 will rotate out.


In terms of what to buy it depends a bit on what your goal is. Is your goal to build a collection or build deck? If it is the latter, who will you play with? Friends in a casual setting? Store events like FNM? Or are you aiming for the Pro Tour?

i dont get what you mean by half of the cards rotate out?, forgive me if im being dumb and not getting what you mean.

do you mean half of the cards that are coming out next month will not be available to use after september, and then i will have to buy atleast 1 of the expansion sets?


well i dont have a single friend who is interested in playing it (i know, i pick poor friends) haha so i am interested in finding some FNM evets near me to meet some new friends who i can play with and learn from, and then i will go on to owning the pro tour champion title at a later date ;)


and i am interested in building a deck of good cards i cn play with, not just as collectibles, although i would enjoy collecting some of my more favourite creature cards as a side thing.
i dont get what you mean by half of the cards rotate out?, forgive me if im being dumb and not getting what you mean.


Every year we get 4 Sets, 3 of which belong to the expansion blocks and the other one is the Core set.

New blocks start in September/October, when the first set comes out. Then we get another set in the winter and another in the spring (roughly). Then we get the Core set in the summer, and it starts all over again the following autumn.

Right now in Standard we have:
Innistrad Block (the sets Innistrad, Dark Ascension and Avacyn Restored) [the last block]
Magic 2013 Core set [last year's core set]
Return to Ravnica Block (the sets Return to Ravnica, Gatecrash and Dragon's Maze) [the current block]

Soon the Magic 2014 Core set will come out and be added to that list (nothing rotates out at that point).

Then on the 27th of September the first set of the next block comes out (called Theros), and on the same day all of Innistrad Block and the 2013 Core set rotate out of Standard.

Then as the 2nd and 3rd sets from Theros come out they are added to the list, and next summer M15 comes out and that is added to the list as well. Then in Autumn next year the following Block starts, and Return to Ravnica Block and M13 drop out of Standard. It is always moving forward to keep things fresh (and to allow them to focus on printing new cards rather than continuously reprinting the ones that are already out).

There is an Event Locator on the main Wizards site. There are lots of places to play in the UK but there are also lots of dead zones unfortunately.

I suggest you find a place to play and get your name down for a seat at the M14 Pre-release.

~ Tim
I am Blue/White Reached DCI Rating 1800 on 28/10/11. :D
Sig
56287226 wrote:
190106923 wrote:
Not bad. But what happens flavor wise when one kamahl kills the other one?
Zis iz a sign uf deep psychological troma, buried in zer subconscious mind. By keelink himzelf, Kamahl iz physically expressink hiz feelinks uf self-disgust ova hiz desire for hiz muzzer. [/GermanPsychologistVoice]
56957928 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
That makes no sense to me. If they spelled the ability out on the card in full then it would not be allowed in a mono-black Commander deck, but because they used a keyword to save space it is allowed? ~ Tim
Yup, just like you can have Birds of paradise in a mono green deck but not Noble Hierarch. YAY COLOR IDENTITY
56287226 wrote:
56888618 wrote:
Is algebra really that difficult?
Survey says yes.
56883218 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
You want to make a milky drink. You squeeze a cow.
I love this description. Like the cows are sponges filled with milk. I can see it all Nick Parks claymation-style with the cow's eyes bugging out momentarily as a giant farmer squeezes it like a squeaky dog toy, and milk shoots out of it.
56287226 wrote:
56735468 wrote:
And no judge will ever give you a game loss for playing snow covered lands.
I now have a new goal in life. ;)
i dont get what you mean by half of the cards rotate out?, forgive me if im being dumb and not getting what you mean.

Of the six expansion sets and two core sets that will be standard legal on September 26, half of them (the three expansion sets in the Innistrad bloack and the Magic 2013 core set) will rotate out the next day.

and i am interested in building a deck of good cards i cn play with, not just as collectibles, although i would enjoy collecting some of my more favourite creature cards as a side thing.

Well, I'll cover your basic options:

1. Buy lots of cards: This is good for building a collection, not so great for building a good deck, because even if you buy lots and lots of cards, you're unlikely to get the specific cards in the sufficient quantities that you need for a deck. To buy cards, you can buy boosters (for example, many buy a box of 36 boosters to get a discount). Alternatively, if you are after specific cards in an expansion set, you can buy what is known as a common/uncommon play set. This consists of 4x copies of every common and uncommon card in that specific expansion set. This is actually fairly good both for collecting cards and for deck building, and may represent the sweet spot of compromise. The downside is that you'd have to do this for each expansion set and core set of interest, and that you still would need to buy rare cards separately for your deck.

2. Buy the cards needed for a deck. You can buy a pre-built deck (known as event decks), which you can then work on upgrading. This is probably the cheapest way to get a standard-legal and decently competitive deck. Alternatively, you can design your own deck (rewarding, hard to do as beginner) or you can research a deck list that you like, that you can either copy or adapt. Once you have a deck list, you can buy just the single cards you need for that list.

Regardless of which option you choose, don't forget to also focus on learning how to play the game well. You will need both a good deck and skills as a player to do well. 
Well thanks for information both of you, it was indeed very helpful.
I shall look online and start deciding what to buy, I have also checked out that store locator you mentioned, and it shows 2 local ones in my city, let's hope they are busy and good.
Thanks again.
I shall look online and start deciding what to buy, I have also checked out that store locator you mentioned, and it shows 2 local ones in my city, let's hope they are busy and good.

I forgot that you were in Liverpool. In the U.S. there are a gazillion online providers of Magic cards, so it's relatively easy to get things like playsets (which are also available via ebay), at good prices. You may have to adjust my advice to your local market conditions.

It's no problem, just a quick question, what is magic online like?, I have seen that pop up quite abit

Do you play online?
Magic Online is great fun. You download a client program that simulates the paper game perfectly (unlike certain iterations of the Duels of the Planeswalkers game, though those can be fun as well), and from there you accumulate a collection of virtual cards and pretty much play the game virtually. Of course, your online collection is separate from your physical one, so building both can be expensive. I prefer to play Constructed Magic in real life, and focus on drafting online. 

What Hreth is talking about, though, is online vendors such as starcitygames.com where you can purchase physical cards online to be shipped to you, probably the best way to build a deck if you can't get to a local card shop. This isn't the same as Magic Online, which is an entire community built around the virtual representations (though still worth real money) of cards. 

Bro, do you even Autocard?

Autocarding: [c]Cryptic Command[/c] = Cryptic Command

Showing somebody how to autocard: [c[b][/b]]Cryptic Command[/c] = [c]Cryptic Command[/c] = Cryptic Command