I have been playing Magic since the summer of 1995. Growing up my parents were not wealthy and “pay to play” was not an option for me. I would get only a few dollars for allowance a week and I would head straight to my local game store and buy as many commons as I could and build a deck from them. I started learning card value as a result and would often build decks from very synergistic and janky cards, making something from virtually nothing. Rares in my collection were few and far between. My head was often stuck in Duelist or Inquest Magazines.
Most of you Magic historians know the summer of ’95 to be when Ice Age was released and the card Necropotence was set forth upon this earth resulting in what was called “Black Summer” of ’96. Nearly every competitive deck was a Necropotence deck or designed to beat one. I got a job and bought what I needed to make a deck and started building what would be my best deck to date. I ran that Necropotence deck for as long as DCI allowed me to, winning many local level tournaments.
My card flopping days would come and go through the following years. Life took me many places and sometimes Magic was not a part of it but I would always return again after time.
When it comes to competitive Magic I’m a schmo. A nobody. A local name at best. I have been to a hand full of big stage Magic: The Gathering events, all placing near the bottom at all of them. The closest I have ever gotten to the top 8 in a Grand Prix was when I watched a match or two of the semi-finals after a long afternoon of losses. I have no credits or accolades in the global Magic community. Should you follow my gaming advice? Probably not, but I love this game and will always enjoy afternoon battles across the kitchen table with a friendly opponent…
…and that’s where playing on a budget comes in.
Not all of us are wealthy and can spend hundreds of dollars on pricy rares. Many of us have families or simply cannot spend money constantly on the next rotation of cards in standard. There are cards that can be bought and collected that are close to par on a competitive level with the best that wont break the bank. Besides, let’s face it, we can only stand so much top tier level play when you just want to enjoy a fun game of magic with friends.
This blog is for us, the cheap, the thrifty, the broke, the competitive. People that don’t want to pay to play with the big boys. Players that want to beat tier 1 decks with what we found in that long forgotten commons box. People that like to cast a nickle card to make a player discard a Tarmogoyf. Players that focus on the metagame and can create that deck that slips under the radar and can steal one in the finals.