Merry Christmas and happy New Year’s

Merry Christmas and happy New Year’s – 2020 has almost come to an end, but just to be on the safe side, stay inside, hide your treasured cardboard in a place where no water, paw, baby fingers, fireworks or crazy-Christian moms can find them!

Another year has passed. And what a year! It has been absolutely crazy, and the stupid pandemic hasn’t left us much room to play magic against each other in physical get-togethers. Hopefully that will change for the better very soon!

It has also been a year of an unprecedented amount of new OS content, new tournament series (online) and – at least for me – a very present feeling of strength in the community. A worldwide pandemic, with literally millions of casualties, worldwide lockdowns and prohibitions to meet in person hasn’t been able to destroy our community. And while I have only experienced respect and understanding, we have been able to play and expand our community and format. That is no small feat! And it is a testament to the strength and perseverance of our way of playing the game.

I hope to make it a tradition, to write a little Christmas post every year, primarily containing pictures of the cards I have acquired throughout the year – the presents I bought for myself – and some ramblings about the Old School highlights of the year as well.

Newly acquired cardboard

2020 has been a year of upgrades for me. Almost all my buys this year has been upgrades of cards I already own, but there have also been a little room for some new (!) cards. 2020 has also been a year of spending!

Because of the pandemic, the Danish government released some frozen funds which meant, that I suddenly had an extra €2500 to buy cards for. That was nice. And that was what finally made me upgrade some more duals, so that I can one day cross the waters and play in the legendary Old School fields of my neighboring Sweden (!).

This year, I have bought or traded into:

Green Alpha cards. Enchantresses and Tranquility was upgraded from revised. I didn’t own Wild Growths before.
Lots of very sexy cards there! The Beta artifacts was upgraded from FBB German ones.

And a lot of other stuff, I have now forgotten, but which are now an important integrated part of my collection.

I am – as always – super happy with my buys. I really, simply love beta cards! It puzzles me why they are so appealing, but they are.

The playset of Howling Mines was something I have wanted for a long time. But I have this far been too cheap to actually shell out the rather big chunk of money to buy them. Now I have them and I have played them ever since! I play them in combo decks, I play them in control decks – sometimes, I even play them in aggro decks! I love myself some mines. More on that in a later post.

The Mana Flare and the Fastbond were for a project I am working on – kind of a restricted tribal deck. Also more on that later.

The Enchantresses was a very good bargain, which I simply couldn’t turn down. Even though Alpha cards are normally a league higher than I can play. But these four cards are rapidly turning into the jewels of my collection. They are so beautiful. The condition, the artwork, the allure of Alpha cards in general. I am very happy with my impulse shopping of these four fine ladies!

And then there are the duals. For me, duals are nothing special. I have owned duals since 1997, when they were about €10 for the most expensive ones. And I have had a full set of Revised duals since 2003. I have even at one point had 10 Unlimited, 3 Betas and an Alpha dual (all these were downgraded to Revised, to be able to buy three Moxes). Of course duals are great cards. Of course they are necessary and almost mythological in vibe. But, for me, they are not much more special than basic lands.

This is also why I am not as thrilled by my newly acquired Unlimited duals. I like them. I don’t regret buying them. But I don’t really get off, of them – I mean, they don’t even have black borders… So why do I buy them? Great question. I guess it has to do with one of the strange things about Old School Magic: the hunt. And the beautiful deck picks! Oooh, and the mythological “Swedish Legal Decks!”

Also, I really dislike Revised cards in my decks, I guess. I want to be able to play at least a couple of different Swedish legal decks. I am getting there. Also the #40before40 challenge. I am now at 12 Unlimited duals, I am 35 years old, and so it should be possible. But I am really not sure I want to buy all the duals in Unlimited. A couple of them I very rarely play anyway. We’ll see, I guess.

Experiences in the Magical sphere

That’s it for the new cards in my binders. Now for the other highlights.

Well, 2020 has been an awful year in many respects. Not least the fact, that there has been very limited possibility to get together with old friends and new and play some Magic. I have only played one physical tournament this year – but it was a blast! You can read all about my misdoings on the Jutland Ridge right here. It truly was a great gathering of great people and great Magic. I hope for a lot more of that the coming year.

At the Mountains of Madness II. What an awesome gathering of beautiful young(-ish) wizards!

2020 was also the year where I bought myself a webcam and a microphone to play some online cardboard. It was quite the boundary for me to cross, but I managed to do it, and I have played several DOOM tournaments. I have had abysmal results – both because I am bad at playing Magic, but also because I am even worse at figuring out what is going on, when its going on, on a screen. You can read about some of my giant play mistakes here.

Anyway online tournaments have been a very decent substitute for the real thing, and I want to throw some major shout-outs to the guys orchestrating it all – the Doom Crew! (who has, sadly, discontinued the series, but Tron Wars has continued the tradition)

I imagine I will participate in more online tournaments the coming years, but they can never replace the real thing!

The blogging

As you know, I have also spent some of 2020 on building this blog. It was something that I wanted to do for some time, but it took a worldwide pandemic and a paternity leave for me, to get myself together and do it.

I just want to thank you for reading along. It means a lot to me, that some enjoy my thoughts, and it certainly helps me prioritize writing some more.

Now I will get back to my family to spend a couple of days more of relaxing. In January I have to get back at work after being on paternity leave since mid-September. That will be quite the shock, and probably also result in a bit less activity on these walls. Let’s see.

Merry Christmas! Happy New Years!

And thank you for reading!

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