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You Don't Pass a Boros Reckoner

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You Don't Pass a Boros Reckoner.

I was playing magic last night at Melrose Music and Comics in Los Angeles and I won. I came in first place over 12 other booster drafters. I walked into the store at 7:56 and waited for the draft to start at 8:00. By 8:00 there were 4 people waiting to draft. I asked the manager what time the draft was supposed to start and he told me 8:00 just like he did over the phone when I called an hour earlier to make sure I was going to make it in on time. So I ended up waiting until 9:00 to start the damn draft when 8 other players showed up making the total player count an awkward 12. The manager put it to a vote as to whether we wanted a large pod of 12 or 2 of 6. The unanimous vote was largely in favor of 2 pods of 6. But the computer wouldn't listen to us and spit out the final verdict that we'd be playing 1 large pod. Stupid computer. 

We took our seats and 3 gatecrash booster packs were passed down the table from one end to the other. The man on my right held the packs that were supposed to come to me and replaced them with the packs he would have had. We laughed about it and he remarked on how mad he'd be if I ended up opening a mythic he would have otherwise had. I didn't care since it was literally impossible to know what was inside the packs and wrote it off as amusing. So the timer began and we started shredding each of our first packs, looking for that 1st pack 1st pick that may or may not decide the rest of our picks and ultimately our final deck. After stripping the plastic from the 15 card booster I shoveled the useless shell of the pack towards the middle of the table and fanned out the last several cards to see what was among them. Boros Reckoner. I briefly skimmed through the rest of the cards for the fun of it. You don't pass a Boros Reckoner. I flashed the card to the guy to my right and so ensued the raging. Several juicy boros guild picks, including 1 boros charm and a madcap skills later, and I was quite content with my measly 4 creature deck so far. 

The boros cards coming from my right during the first round of pack openings were in no short supply so I strapped in and locked myself into force mode. The second pack rare turned out to be a crypt ghast which I lamented giving away, but had no intention of hate drafting over a truefire paladin first pick. Several picks later and all but the suckiest of red and white cards found their way to me, cough cough structural collapse structural collapse sucks big time it sucks. But being the seasoned drafter I am I was well aware of the lack of low costed creatures in my deck so far. Sorry skin brand goblin but I think you're too expensive for a useful 2/1 red creature. So when those foundry street denizens came 'round boy was I happy to see 'em. 3 street denizens later and I had all the 1 drops I needed, filling in a crucial part of my aggro boros control deck. Oh ya, I had snatched up 3 angelic edicts and a smite for some quality white removal first and second pack.   

So then it was time to get started on the 3rd pack, which is generally the most fruitful round as long as you're playing colors nobody around you is playing since those people will already be settled into their respective colors, leaving cards in your colors more likely to reach you. Explanation aside, first pick third pack is another Boros Reckoner. How nice! Once again, flashed the guy to my right. By the end of picking from the third packs, news of the "double reckoner deck" had spread and soon nobody looked like they wanted to be paired up against me. I put together my nearly perfect draft deck and started drawing hands. Ya this was gonna be fun, I whispered under my breath.  

I'm quite fond of razortip whip in general but many people where surprised to see it in my deck, yielding such comments as, you have that card in you deck? and there must be something else you could side in. All I regret is failing to keep track of how much damage it ended up doing each game it hit the field. Certainly no less than 4 damage, at times nearing double digits. Ironically it was the whip that dealt the fatal blow giving me the win in the finals against a guy who previously pointed out how embarrassing it would be to lose your last point of life to razortip whip. I was thrilled to have won a draft for the first time since I started playing again just this year, after an 8 year hiatus. I ended up winning without losing a single game in all 4 rounds. The "double reckoner deck" played exceptionally well whenever a reckoner was on the field, but was also rather proficient during games where they were absent.   

Here's a list of the cards that were most effective in the deck:   

Boros Reckoner  

angelic edict  

smite  

madcap skills   

true fire paladin   

wojek halberdiers   

skyknight legionnaire   

syndic of tithes  

court street denizen   

foundry street denizen   

and lastly razortip whip of course.  

$30 store credit 'aint too shabby for a struggling magic player.

Re: Speaking Up: Why Female Game Writers Shouldn't Be Ignored

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A few weeks ago I came across a blog post by Gamespot Australia's own associate editor Laura parker that moved me. Laura's latest post entitled, "Speaking Up: Why Female Game Writers Shouldn't Be Ignored", caught my attention. Also known as Lozzica on Gamespot, Laura brought an issue to the forefront that deserves to be addressed. The matter sex. Not sex sex, but female and male sex. Let me rephrase this actually. Male and female journalism, specifically game journalism. Ya, that works.

Here is a link to Lozzica's amazing post http://www.gamespot.com/users/Lozzica/show_blog_entry.php?topic_id=m-100-25947136

The following is my response to Lozzica's blog post...

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This article has certainly opened my eyes to the female perspective on the topic of female game writers. Being the brother of a female film director currently going through much of the same experiences of gender imbalance as you mention has helped to make me aware of the hurtles regarding gender in certain industries. If I might impose some of my opinions on the matter.

I don't know if the answer is pretending not to aknowledge your gender. You cannot deny that you're either male or female. Someone didn't, "chose to separate male writers from female writers." You are female writers. That's not the problem it's just a fact. The problem is that there are people who are going to treat you differently because of that fact.

It's hard to believe it wasn't that long ago that woman were even given the right to vote. It was less than 150 years ago "in 1893 New Zealand was the first country to give women the right to vote on a national level." And The US didn't do the same until 1920. It's a mindset that's been passed down since the beginning of human existence on a prehistoric level when being physically stronger literally meant life or death and therefore dominance.

As a species we're definitely moving towards the point when men and women will be viewed as equals, both by law and by society. We're just not there yet.

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So, what do you think about the position of male and female gender imbalance in the industry? Leave a comment.

Console Gamer Moves to California and Goes PC...

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Welcome to my first gamespot blog ever. Since this is the first blog I thought I'd start out with an introduction of who I am and what I'm about. My name is Alex and of course I'm an avid gamer (why else would I be here). But I'm also really into long distance running, playing pickup soccer, snowboarding, electronic dance music (or EDM), and last but certainly not least blogging.

I just recently turned 20 years old and this past October I was lucky enough to have the opportunity take a year off of college and move to Los Angeles, California. Since then my life has undergone a complete transformation. I never imagined how hard it would be just to go grocery shopping myself. The first week I bought way too little, and way too much the second! But it's been amazing, and I've already met a bunch of cool people here.

As far as gaming goes, I've been going through some serious XBOX 360 withdrawals. I made a choice to leave my console, along with all my beloved games behind on this move to the west coast. I feared having such a distraction before I found a job out here might prevent me from being as productive as I should be. I know I have an addiction because now 99% of my Spotify playlist is comprised of music from video games composers such as Martin O'Donnel who worked on much of the music in Halo and Clint Mansell and Sam Hulickfrom who worked on Mass Effect 3. But I have a plan to get my fix back.

For years I've had a dream to build a gaming PC and now I'm going to reach for it. Based on the fact that I'm not rolling in the dough(yet) it's going to be an ongoing project, buying parts as I make money. This way I'll be encouraged to hunt for a job rather than sidetracked. To get started I bought the case it's going to use. It's an Antec 900 gaming computer case and it looks sexy.

So that's a little bit about myself and what I'm doing. I'll be updating the blog regularly on topics like gaming past and present, current news events in the industry, and more. Hope you enjoy it.