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    • On 04/01/2019 at 0:52 PM, xelif said:

      Thanks for the flowchart. I just signed up to note: For the dates "1993-1998 -> Anthologies" the marker is positioned too low (right beside the date 1993-1999)

      Since you published a google drawings document, have you tried allowing comments? That may make getting feedback just a bit easier.


      The whole chart has been modified. Does your original comment still apply?

    • If a single player has multiple triggered abilities go on the stack, they go on in the order that player chooses. I was actually able to abuse that with Mono-Red Battlecry, which let me stack Battle Cry triggers with creature abilities that put tokens into play on attacking.

      HOWEVER, I think there is a special circumstance here. Technically Shrieking Affliction won't trigger at all if a player has 4 cards in hand according to The Gatherer.


      2 Shrieking Affliction’s ability will trigger only if an opponent begins their upkeep with one or fewer cards in hand. The ability will check the number of cards in that player’s hand again when it tries to resolve. If that player has two or more cards in hand at that time, that player won’t lose life.


      So, IF I'M READING IT CORRECTLY, which I might not be, Shrieking Affliction won't trigger at the beginning of upkeep if the opponent starts with 4 cards regardless. That certainly feels wrong, but it might be some intricacy in how it's worded or something, I don't know. *Shrug*

    • The "Horizon Canopy" lands are pretty crazy, and Munitions Expert seems pretty good in 8-Whack.


    • Some spoilers are out, anyone excited about this set?

    • Well...that's over.  I see it as a book preview, it should be vastly different.  Here is a bit of fan fiction that helped give me some closure. 



      After the Wheel

      In the long years of his reign, King Brandon Stark was not loved by the smallfolk nearly so much as the quietude of his rule. Bran himself was a distant and near-silent king, with no taste for great celebrations or inspiring rhetoric. But when the Driftwood Queen demanded the independence of the Iron Islands in 313 AC, Bran granted it almost immediately; the expanded fleet that the Greyjoys had long laboured over had hardly left its harbours before the raven returned from King’s Landing. Dorne’s autonomy grew not with violence, but with carefully negotiated partnership, and though now Ornelia Martell is styled the Princess of Dorne, the Maesters of Oldtown would say that the lands beyond the Red Mountains are more closely entwined – through trade and goodwill – with the Five Kingdoms than ever before. It is said that, though the Seven Kingdoms became Six through the sacrifice of a million lives, the Six became Five without a single drop of spilt blood.

      These years of calm saw the turn of seven long summers and seven mild winters. The external threats to Bran’s reign – the Braavosi blockade of 309, sponsored by the Iron Bank and facilitated by many mercenaries; the Second Crossing of the Dothraki Khalasar in 318; the Septons’ Rising of 331 or the coming of the Red Refugees in the decade afterward – seemed less desperate in comparison to the crises endured by King’s Landing in the warlike years before, as if an invisible hand were directing events, by slight nudges, toward the ends of stability and prosperity. Though terrible battles were rumoured in many parts of Essos, their effects were seldom felt in Westeros. One might also have expected some friction to arise from the King’s worship of the Old Gods, but Bran’s habits were so private, and his style of rule so tolerant, that for a time it seemed impossible that internal strife and religious discord could ever have been the hallmark of the Six – and then the Five – Kingdoms.

      The absence of vengeful dragons surely helped. There are folk in Volantis who, in exchange for a cup of sweet wine, will tell the tale of their fathers or grandfathers catching sight of a great winged creature that obscured the waning moon in its eastbound flight, high above the city. Some of the Ghiscari traders who can now be so frequently found in Planky Town or Storm's End tell a similar story: that in the cold night after the death of the Dragon Queen, her last child, screaming with anguish, caused many a night-time watcher to return to their decks in great haste. Daenerys was carried far into the east, perhaps as far as the Shadowlands or the unknown forests of Ulthos. What became of her remains is not known. Some say the creature flew until fatigue brought it plummeting into deep, uncharted waters. Others suggest that reports of dragons - fleeting glimpses, disappearing livestock, bone-chilling cries in the lonely places of the world - are not always the product of fancy or hysteria.

      Bran outlived every member of his original Small Council, and outlasted – as far as can be known for certain – every other Stark. Of his sister Arya, the Hero of Winterfell, little was ever heard again: she sailed West, beyond the reckoning and knowledge of all, within days of her brother’s coronation, leaving only the rumours that are shared and rendered into stories in every town of Westeros and Essos: of a single, ragged-looking Raven that flew out of a storm over the Western Sea decades later and on to the last high tower of the Red Keep, bearing a message whose contents were seen only by the King and his closest advisors. The tale that is most often told is that Arya reached the land that is West of West, and shared what details she could of the wonders and terrors she found there before meeting her own mysterious fate. What is certainly true is that, slowly and deliberately, Bran has been fortifying the Western coast of the Five Kingdoms throughout the latter part of his reign.

      Sansa Stark, the Queen in the North, maintained strong relations with her brother’s kingdom and toward the end of her life was frequently to be found in the courts of King’s Landing or Dorne, having inherited from her mother a preference for the warmth. After her passing in 371 her bannermen selected Harrold Royce to rule the North.

      Of the fate of Jon Snow – the Bastard of Winterfell, the Half-Stark, the Queenslayer, the Resurrected, the Friend of Wolves, twice named Lord Commander of Castle Black – very little is known. The Hand of the King, Tyrion Lannister, visited the North and the Wall in the first decade after Snow's return to the Night’s Watch. Of that visit he records that the Wall was all but unmanned, and that those who stood upon it were facing south, rather than north. The Hand was told that Jon Snow had, years earlier, gone forth with a great company of wildlings and northerners, disappearing into the dark forests of the Lands of Always Winter. Their exploration of those unmapped places are the subject of much conjecture: that Snow had been named the King Beyond the Wall, that he had made contact with the last enclaves of the Children of the Forest, that he was overseeing the settling of great underground cities among the twisting, interconnected roots of the Weirwood trees. It is said that the Greyjoys know something of those northernmost lands, and that Sansa Stark, before her death, knew more, but would not tell. The Lonely King, Bran the Broken, Bran the Bridgemaker, Bran the Wheelbreaker, surely knew more still – but in his quiet places and sanctuaries around King’s Landing, he seldom spoke a word, and to each successive Hand and Archmaester he entrusted fewer of his thoughts.

      Finally, in 382 AC, at the start of his eighth winter, King Brandon embarked upon a final journey. He had aged but slowly in all the years of his reign, but age had come upon him nevertheless. His Kingsguard escorted him on the first leg of his journey – a secretive consultation followed by long weeks of contemplation or reading in Oldtown – and then took him as far as the Wall when at last he travelled North. After a night in the almost uninhabited Castle Black, Bran ordered the Kingsguard to return to Winterfell, and so on to the Five Kingdoms, where they were to supervise the selection of a new King of Westeros.

      The last of the Starks then travelled North, beyond the wall, quite alone. The Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch reported that distant figures joined the King’s horse just before it disappeared into the treeline. No sight or word of King Bran has been heard in the long years since.

      The winters are deeper now, and though King’s Landing is again fair and no great wars have troubled Westeros for many decades, some of the world’s wonder has diminished since the end of the time of Bran the Wheelbreaker.


      And here is GRRM's take.  He is a busy guy.


      And I’m writing.   Winter is coming, I told you, long ago… and so it is.   THE WINDS OF WINTER is very late, I know, I know, but it will be done.  I won’t say when, I’ve tried that before, only to burn you all and jinx myself… but I will finish it, and then will come A DREAM OF SPRING.

      How will it all end? I hear people asking.   The same ending as the show?  Different?

      Well… yes.  And no.  And yes.   And no.   And yes.   And no.   And yes.

      I am working in a very different medium than David and Dan, never forget.   They had six hours for this final season.   I expect these last two books of mine will fill 3000 manuscript pages between them before I’m done… and if more pages and chapters and scenes are needed, I’ll add them.   And of course the butterfly effect will be at work as well; those of you who follow this Not A Blog will know that I’ve been talking about that since season one.   There are characters who never made it onto the screen at all, and others who died in the show but still live in the books… so if nothing else, the readers will learn what happened to Jeyne Poole, Lady Stoneheart, Penny and her pig, Skahaz Shavepate, Arianne Martell, Darkstar, Victarion Greyjoy, Ser Garlan the Gallant, Aegon VI, and a myriad of other characters both great and small that viewers of the show never had the chance to meet.   And yes, there will be unicorns… of a sort…

      Book or show, which will be the “real” ending?   It’s a silly question.   How many children did Scarlett O’Hara have?

      How about this?  I’ll write it.   You read it.  Then everyone can make up their own mind, and argue about it on the internet.


      The fact that the show is so vastly different from the books allows me to separate them.  I think I was so hard on the show because I was comparing it to the books, and that kind of thing almost never helps.  So I can still look forward to the books, and I am going to start a reread of them.  The show made me forget how awesome books are.

      For those people who are still reading the books (SPOILERS) a refresher of where they are.


      As someone who has read the books (like countless others here) all is not lost. We can treat the last couple of years of the shows as something to consider. Something to help us paint the images we see as we continue reading the series. The new books will be released and we can carry on from where we left off as if almost nothing else happened.

      • Jon Snow was just stabbed to death by Bowen Marsh and crew
      • Aegon Targaryen (fAegon, not Jon) is found to be alive in the free cities and is reunited with Tyron who convinces him to invade Westeros NOW. During the invasion, Tyrion is captured by Jorah and taken to Dany (although Tyrion has yet to meet Dany at this point). Aegon conquers 4 cities in the Stormlands with the Golden Company bu his side
      • Arya continues her training by the Faceless
      • Dany has married a Mereen noble but is still banging Daario. Quentyn Martell had gone to Mereen to marry Dany as well but he dies trying to ride a dragon. The dragons escape. Kill a lot of people. Dany rides Drogon out of town but gets sick and stranded which is how we leave her -a captive of the Dothraki hoard again
      • Rheagal and Viserion have escaped and are camped atop the pyramids of Mereen. Barristan Selmy is preparing for a defense of the city against the Yunkai in Dany's absence
      • Victarion Greyjoy has just made it to Mereen to win the hand of Dany, marry her, and then use her dragons to use them to take the Iron Isles back from his brother Euron. Victarion has Moqorro on his side and a Dragonbinder horn
      • Stannis' army is camped outside of Winterfell but they are snowbound
      • The Boltons occupy Winterfell, but are being undermined by a group of Northern lords led by Wyman Manderly. Manderly has publicly announced the death of Davos, but secretly sent him to Skagos to find Rickon Stark. Ramsay claims to have defeated Stannis in the field, but that may have been a ploy to intimidate Jon
      • Theon has escaped Winterfell (without Sansa since she was never in Winterfell to begin with. See below). Is reunited with his sister ASHA
      • In Dorne, the Sand Snakes are still alive as are Myrcella and her betrothed Prince Trystane. The Snakes are plotting to infiltrate King's Landing and somehow avenge Oberyn's death (The Mountain is "dead" thanks to Oberyn, but see Robert Strong lone below). Myrcella was injured by the Darkstar (Ser Gerold Dayne), who disappeared, and Ser Areys Oakheart, her Kingsguard and protector was killed. This happened during a foiled attempt to crown Myrcella as queen of the seven kingdoms according to Dornish law. A couple of the Snakes are headed to KL to eliminate any and all of Tywin's progeny
      • Lady Stoneheart (catelyn) is still alive and with the Brothers Without Banners. She seeks revenge on those who perpetrated the Red Wedding.
      • Brienne of Tarth has suffered a grievous facial wound from the teeth of Biter on her pursuit of Sansa before getting captured along with her squire Podrik by the Brotherhood Without Banners. Lady Stoneheart begins to hang the two for having Lannister weapons and refusing to kill Jaime Lannister. Their hanging is interrupted when Brienne mutters a word ("Sword")
      • Jaime has forced a surrender at Riverrun of remaining Northern troops. The Blackfish (Tully) escapes. Jaime has also learned that Cersei has been banging her cousin Lancel and at least for the time being says, "peace out," to Cersei
      • Cersei is forced on the long walk of repentance in KL ("shame, shame,..."). Kevan Lannister and Master Pyrcelle are trying to undo the damage she has caused, but Varys and his little birds do both of them in. He is trying to destroy the Lannisters so that the stage is set for Aegon's return. Cersei is now free and supporting Tommen
      • Our friend, Tommen, is the King
      • Sansa doesn't appear in the last published book. She escaped KL safely with Littlefinger. Last we heard from her she was holed up with Petyr in the Vale hiding under the name Alayne. Robert, the sickly lord of the Vale still rules. Petyr remains the puppet master and is pretty sure Robert will die soon and he can marry Sansa to the heir of the Vale, Harold Haryng, thus uniting Winterfell and the Vale.
      • In Oldtown, Samwell learns from the masters that there is a way to conquer magic. It is unknown what that is. Apprentice Pate was asked by an unknown person to steal a key to a repository of books. He dies from poison after turning over the key to the unknown person. There are theories as to who this unknown person is, but they are just theories and don't belong here
      • Margaery Tyrell was placed under arrest by Cersei is finally released. Cersei couldn't find a way to get rid of her before her own arrest
      • Bran has begun his training with the Last Greenseer and CotF far north of the wall and his traveling companion Jojen has mysteriously disappeared inside the vastness of the weirwood tree
      • Euron is king of the Iron Islands (and the North in his eyes). He continues to wage war on the reach. He has despatched Victarion to Mereen to parlay with Dany
      • Arianne Martell is approaching storms end to treat with the arriving king from Essos who claims to be Aegon VI
      • Stories have made it down to the nights of watch from up north of entire wildling encampments disappearing. Hardhome, a major port for East watch expeditions, has been a point of disappearance of nights watch voyages. Tales of the others wandering the harbor have become increasingly prevalent
      • Mance is still alive. His child was swapped out for Sam's and Gilly's (who are in Oldtown). He is disguised as a bard.
      • Robert Strong is the undead king's guard re-animated from something by Qyburn (yes, I know, people have their theories but it isn't explicit in the books)
      • Robb Stark's widow, Jeyne Westerling, is still alive after the Red Wedding. She is forced back to the Westerlands and is disallowed to marry for 2 years so that there is no doubt that any child she has is NOT Robb's
      • Hodor is still Hodor. no big reveals yet
      • Loras Tyrell is alive (barely). He was severely injured attacking Dragonstone (although Stannis was already north)
      • Sandor is left for dead by Arya in SOS. Brienne, still looking for Sansa, comes across someone (Rorge) wearing the Hound's helmet and kills him in combat. It is possible that the Hound is dead. The helmet is passed to Lem Lemoncloak who is traveling with Thoros and the Brotherhood. They continue to serve Lady Stoneheart


    • rtr-76-shrieking-affliction.jpgmrd-69-necrogen-mists.jpg


      If I have both of these cards on the battlefield and my opponent has 4 cards in hand, do they have to discard a card from Necrogen Mists, causing Shrieking Affliction to trigger?  Or does it depend on which card was played first? 


    • On 5/18/2019 at 10:33 AM, Affinity for MTG said:

      I love watching GP coverage, but I primarily watch based on the deck match ups and less so for the actual players playing. I'll usually seek out GP coverage videos featuring decks I play to see the lines of play I should be considering when I play the deck myself. So yeah, I definitely enjoy watching the game being played at a high level, and I've learned a lot about the intricacies of gameplay by watching the pros. (Most of which I immediately forget when I actually play myself...)

      I've tried watching more casual tabletop videos, there is a local gaming store that records its Friday Night Magic tournaments and posts them on Youtube for example, but watching people make play mistake after play mistake gets a little grating. Which, I suppose, is probably why my own MTGO content does so poorly. :P

      From my perspective, I relate more to the mistakes and style of play.  Easier to learn from the videos and correct mistakes of you own, instead of play that's too fast to really keep up.  I can watch profession games too, but casual play is easier for me to follow and I find it more interesting.

    • I'm definitely interested in it. I play more competitive Magic than kitchen table magic though. I'm about 95 to 98 percent competitive Magic and 2 to 5 percent non-competitive. I like to watch pro Magic as a way to personally improve my play at the game.

      Lasraik likes this
    • I love watching GP coverage, but I primarily watch based on the deck match ups and less so for the actual players playing. I'll usually seek out GP coverage videos featuring decks I play to see the lines of play I should be considering when I play the deck myself. So yeah, I definitely enjoy watching the game being played at a high level, and I've learned a lot about the intricacies of gameplay by watching the pros. (Most of which I immediately forget when I actually play myself...)

      I've tried watching more casual tabletop videos, there is a local gaming store that records its Friday Night Magic tournaments and posts them on Youtube for example, but watching people make play mistake after play mistake gets a little grating. Which, I suppose, is probably why my own MTGO content does so poorly. :P

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    • Damn. Well, you have talked about burnout for awhile now. I kinda of felt the same way when I was writing/blogging about hockey... eventually, the fire goes out and the passion wanes. That said, don't be a total stranger.   
    • I loved seeing pauper on camera, but it also showed that why WOTC wouldn't want it to be on video more often: The matches took for-ev-er. MTGO forces players to click and play fast, especially Dinrova Tron and the like... those paper matches had a lot of moving parts and really did drag. 
    • I'm glad I'm not the only one who despises social media.  There are definitely cliques and if you aren't in one of them or align yourself with what they think like a lemming, it will make it much harder to get your content out there. Lots of the bigger creators talk about 'muh community' but it's all lip service.  With one click to share a link or a post from another creator would expose that content to thousands of people.  They don't owe anyone anything, of course.  They don't have to do anything to help anyone else, but don't talk about how much you love the community and how much you want to help and do next to nothing to help new creators or creators who have been grinding for years but just need that one click to push them over the edge. Twitter especially is such a cesspool of negativity and drama.  Creating content is tough, and I have the utmost respect for those of you who put in the time, money and energy to create content that most of the time goes unnoticed by most players.  It's too bad, because theres so much great stuff out there that doesn't get the attention it deserves.  I'm glad some of you still create content because I enjoy it and know there are others out there who do too.
    • Well, like any draft, if you can't decide on a path early enough, you end up thin on playables. It hurts a bit more in a multicolour set because if you draft Orzhov or Simic cards and end up Azorius, you may have dead cards you can't play without good fixing, even worse if I had picked up Gruul. The lack of 5 guildgates (from the other set) means splashing only works for certain combos I also probably ended up passing good Azorius cards. I was the only true Azorius player, but the guy who went 4-colour gates had a few of the cards I would have loved to have.   
    • If you don't decide on a guild and spread out a little, does it spread you too thin?
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