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Hello, everyone, welcome to Unplug Yourself’s, This Week in Tabletop. I’m Stefan, I’m joined by Jay. Thanks to everyone for tuning in. This week, we’re going to be talking a little bit about all things, trading card games, everything that’s been happening over the last while and then also looking at some of the cool things that are coming up in July.
Magic: the Gathering
June was a busy month for Trading Card Games, some major new sets arrived on the scene and maybe start off by talking a little bit about Magic.
Modern Horizons 2
Magic had a special standalone set that went on sale recently called Modern Horizons 2 now this is the second instalment of a standalone set specifically crafted for modern.
Now modern is a non-rotating format within Magic and Modern Horizons which, first released in 2019, was a straight Modern Set. The first time that they’ve produced products where the cards don’t first enter into Standard, and then they obviously move into all of the other formats.
What these types of sets do then is they’re open up a lot of design space. If you have to consider your cards that are in Standard, the power creep and interactions, you have to be very careful about how you design it that you don’t overpower Standard, while still trying to make sure that you design cards that are powerful enough for the older formats, which because they have such a larger card pool available to them.
Typically, the barrier for what is considered to be a strong card is much higher. But in a straight to Modern set, you can remove some of those restrictions that you have. And we’ve already seen the set be very popular globally, as well as in the local market.
It’s been shaking up things all over the place, the metagame has undergone quite a few changes. And several key cards have already popped up in several decks, Urza’s saga, which is a new Land Enchantment that we haven’t seen before. It was one of the cards making waves beforehand.
For those of you who may have remembered the set Kaladesh, there was a card there called Kari Zev, Skyship Raider, she was a Human Pirate and whenever she attacked she would put a 2/1 Legendary Monkey into a play called Ragavan. Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer has now seen his own printing. And that’s so far the card we’ve seen from Modern Horizons 2 that has had the biggest impact, it’s popping up in any dack, they can basically play Red, and it commands quite a high price tag at upwards of $80.
If you are opening up any modern Modern Horizons 2 packs, that’s probably one of the cards you’re looking to open up.
One of the other cool things about Modern Horizons 2 is that in some of the boosters, you’ll come across some of the Retro Frames. Now the Retro Frames are something that’s been introduced recently, we know that around 2004 magic designers have changed the way that the borders look on the cards. But a lot of players for the nostalgia factors, prefer to have some of those older border cards.
Obviously, all the cards that have been printed since 2004, you don’t really find them in those older frames. But in this set, you can find these Retro Frames and a lot of them in foils. There are lots of Modern cards now with Retro Frames that you could pick up and those have also been quite sought after. Very common in the Collectors’ Boosters, but you also have a chance to find them in some of the other cards. Some cards are exclusively available as Foil Retro Frames in certain products. Be sure to check those out.
Magic Meets D&D | Adventures in the Forgotten Realms
What’s coming up in July for Magic? Well, there’s two things. The new thing that we have is a brand new set that’s being launched. It’s called Adventures in the Forgotten Realms. This is a Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: the Gathering crossover set that we’ll be releasing on the 23rd of July.
Some of you may recall that we’ve previously had a D&D Magic crossover, but it was a Magic set that featured in a D&D setting, in the Guild Masters Guide to Ravnica. This time around, they are bringing the D&D world into Magic, so you’ll be able to play with some D&D themed Magic Cards.
The spoiler season is currently underway, so be sure to check out Twitter, Facebook and other places online as the cards have been spoilt and people starting to piece together what the set looks like.
New Mechanics - Dungons and Dice Rolling
So far, it looks quite exciting. One of the interesting things that we’ll be seeing would be the introduction of an actual D20. In the set, as well as the idea of a dungeon.
Now people might ask how exactly do you incorporate a dungeon into a Magic set? Well there are actually special dungeon cards where start off at the top of a card and whenever you take an action that allows you to venture into the dungeon, you basically have an option, you might go one of two routes and once you into one of those particular rooms there might be a benefit as you would imagine when you’re playing in D&D.
You enter a new room, the Dungeon Master might give you some options, or they might give you multiple options in terms of rooms that you get to go into, then use your party to decide. So this is an interesting way that they’ve brought that flavour and mechanic from the D&D world to Magic the Gathering.
Some of the cards as well do feature you rolling a D20 die something very unique to D&D. You roll those dice and depending on the result that you get, you will be able to get a certain effect off of a card. Again, a concept that the D&D players might be very familiar with, obviously, don’t want to be rolling in zeros or ones.
For the magic players that have been eager to get back into stores and play again a little bit. Unfortunately, we will have to wait for a little while. We’ve just entered a two-week strict lockdown that prohibits any sort of social gatherings. So it’ll be some time before we get to go and play with some of our new cards.
Again, this will, unfortunately, have an effect on the Adventures in the Forgotten Realms pre-release scheduled for the weekend of 16-18 July.
Local Game Store Promotion
There is a new cool sales promotion that will be kicking off at participating WPN stores, where you have a chance to get your hands on a foil retro frame Fable Passage, that’s one of the cool fetch lands that were first introduced in Throne of Eldraine. It’s become a staple in Standard. It is linked to a purchase.
We’re still waiting on the final information around it, but we expect that if you were to spend somewhere between R600-R700 on Magic products, you’d be able to go and claim a copy of one of these cards at participating stores while stocks last. So please just speak to your local store to find out when the promotion is going to go live. They will have all the details in due course.
But it’s a nice incentive the first time that we are seeing this type of sales incentive from Wizards of the Coast.
Okay, so for all the YuGiOh fans. There are a few things that recently went on sale in the local market was the Yu-gi’s legendary decks, it was the new OTS 16 price boosters, as well as the Egyptian Gods Structured Decks.
Yugi's Legendary Decks
Now the Yu-gi’s legendary decks is a reprint. The last time that this box was printed was back in 2015. So if you’ve been waiting a few years to get your hands on this set of decks, now’s the time to do so.
The box comes with 3x 41 card decks. And it’s some of the decks that were used in the Duelist Kingdom and the Battle City series ark for those of you who may have followed the anime. It’s the same decks that Yu-gi had used when he fought against foes like Seto Kaiba and even the Pharaoh himself.
As this set comes nice little gold box. All three decks are preconstructed, ready to play straight out of the box. Basically, just have to go get this one product, then you’ve got all three of the decks.
Fans of the old story and even of the anime, this is a great thing for you to get your hands on. Set hasn’t been available since 2015. So this is a very welcome reprint from the Konami side.
Egyptian God Decks
Another deck that has just launched now is the new structure deck featuring the Egyptian Gods. Slifer the Sky Dragon, as well as Obelisk, the Tormentor.
This time around there are two versions of the structure decks. You can either pick up Slifer or you can pick up Obelisk depending on your preferences and then if you want to really kit out those decks, keep an eye out because the branded accessories are launching at the end of July, the 30th.
On the last Friday of the month, you’ll be able to get some cool branded sleeves, there’s a deck box, there is a 9-pocket portfolio as well as a cool playmat that you can get your hands on.
If you’re looking to upgrade some of the decks from the Egyptian Gods series do keep an eye out on the King’s Court booster set, which is releasing on the 9th of July.
This set has some cool upgrade cards for a few archetypes but some of them linked to the Egyptian Gods set. So if you’re a fan of the Egyptian theme, now’s the time, you can get some upgrades to your decks, get the decks themselves and then at the end of the month really pimp out your deck with some cool accessories.
OTS 16 Prize Booster
Something else that is launched very recently for Yu-G-Oh! are the OTS 16 Prize Booster. Now OTS are the Official Tournament Stores. These are special prize boosters that you cannot purchase over the counter you can only earn them by participating in events.
As I mentioned earlier, unfortunately, we are in lockdown, so there are no events taking place until further notice. But anyone who’s been looking to get their hands on some Ultimate rare Cyber Dragons or the Ultimate Rare Firewalls, or even the Forbidden Droplet, which I think is the most anticipated card from the set, all of these command price tags on the secondary market, close to buying $100.
Just be a little bit patient once it’s safe to do so stores will be able to start running events again. Then you can obviously go into a tournament at one of your local OTS venues and you can earn some of these cool OTS pacts.
Then moving on to Pokémon. On the 18th of June, we saw the 6th instalment in the Sword of Shield series, Chilling Reign goes on sale. That’s also been very well received, people have been very excited about Pokemon in the last year, especially because Pokemon is celebrating 25 years. That’s a huge anniversary for a Trading Card Game.
We have been in the Sword and Shield series since February of last year when we kicked off with the first Sword and Shield series. That will continue well into next year, and perhaps beyond.
Talking about the 25th anniversary this week, or last week, there were some announcements made around the special set that’s going on sale in October, called Pokemon Celebrations.
Now, Celebrations is a special set that’s just going to feature some of the great cards from the last 25 years of Pokemon. And how these special sets work is that there are boosters, but you cannot get these boosters in a booster box like you normally would expect with any other set.
You can only find the special boosters in specific products, these might be Tins, Boxes and Bundles and Elite Trainer Boxes and so on. There are a few products that are going on sale, either 8th of October or the 22nd of October, featuring a lot of these things.
There is a very cool Pikachu Figurine box. There is a very cool Elite Trainer box that comes with 17 of these boosters, as well as a few other regular Pokemon boosters. So please do keep an eye out for that one.
Pokémon Card Game Boom
We think that this one is going to be an incredibly popular Pokemon. Since last year, through to this year, it has really seen a huge surge in popularity. In part, thanks to the likes of people like Logan Paul, who’ve gotten into collecting, so a lot of the vintage cards have just shot through the roof in terms of the value.
So if you’re used to playing Pokemon as a kid, and you maybe want to make some money, now’s the time to go scratch around in some of those boxes. See if you’ve got some cards in good condition, they might be worth 10x more than you ever thought that they would be.
Chilling Reign PTCGO
For those who don’t know, Pokemon is not just a video game or trading card game, there’s also an online version of the trading card game. And a lot of the paper products come with code cards that you’re able to redeem online especially the Battle Decks.
So if you purchase a Battle Deck you can go redeem that version of the Battle Decks online. It’s a nice way for you too, especially during lockdown get to still play Pokemon even if you can’t meet up in person with friends or go to a tournament.
Join the next Pokemon TCG Online Open!
The online Open Championship is something that Kahuna Koala will be hosting with all of the major booster sets that come out.
The next one, Sword and Shield 7 Evolving Skies, is going on sale at the end of August. So keep an eye out for the PTCGO that will be taking place in early September. It is completely FREE of charge.
All you need to do is have an online deck that you can play, register for the event ahead of time, and you can stand to win lots of cool prizes.
Dungeons & Dragons
Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft
Right, so talking about D&D, the latest release that became available to the market was Van Richten’s Guide to Ravenloft. Any of the D&D fans would know that Ravenloft is quite a popular setting. And then Rudolph Van Richten is obviously one of the main monster fighters.
This is the book that had released late in May of this year. And this is a book that is really for Adventures, as well as for Dungeon Master’s, some new adventures have been introduced.
Features and Mechanics
There’s lots of new backgrounds and even the idea of trinkets that have been introduced for characters. Now is the first time that players can utilise some of these new objects within the game. And obviously, it being Ravenloft and it being Van Richten and fighting against monsters, you can assume that there’s quite a big horror setting or theme to the setting that they are using.
So be sure to check that one out. I think there, for example, new subclasses have been added like spirits, and then you know bards and there’s even an undead pact for Warlocks.
There are some dark gifts and things to explore. So lots of cool new things. If you’re a fan of D&D, and especially one that has a bit of a horror theme, do go check that one out. Van Richten had released in May.
D&D Release Schedule
In June, July and August are no new books, or other items releasing for D&D, but towards the late second half of the year, September, October, November, there’ll be lots of cool new products that are going to be coming out some new books, there’s a new DM Screen that’s being released.
And specifically, the book coming out in September is called The Wild Beyond the Witchlight.
The Wild Beyond the Witchlight
Now, there’s something called The Witchlight Carnival, which is like this Carnival which travels around, Faerun. What’s going to be unique about this particular campaign that’s being played is this is targeting a bit of a younger age group.
Because you can actually play this entire campaign without the need for any sort of combat. So it just is about interactions and adventures. But there doesn’t have to be any fighting. If you want to include fighting, you can, but you can play through this campaign, especially if you’ve got a younger audience, or you know “party members”.
Where they maybe just want to do some problem solving and interaction, there doesn’t have to be any fighting that takes place. So quite a unique take on a D&D sitting here. The fact that you could play through the campaign without the need for any sort of resolution through combat.
That’s going on so late in September.
Head to your Friendly Local Games Store today and ask them about these great titles!