Persuasion Check: Unearthed Arcana – Centaurs and Minotaurs

We’re back with May’s Unearthed Arcana taking a look at playable races for Centaurs and Minotaurs! Minotaurs previously appeared in 2015, but they’re back and revised alongside their fellow ‘taur.

Even as a DM, I love seeing new player options, especially races, come out. I was relieved initially when the Monster Manual did not have any statistics for using monsters as races, meaning I had good reason to keep my players to the options in the Player’s Handbook. But it has been a few years and I’m ready for some monstrous characters, so bring on ‘taurs! Read More


Evaluating the Competitive Viability of Creatures


Unless you have been living under a rock, you have either heard about or directly experienced the cost-efficiency of The Scarab God.  I mean, this guy does everything At just five mana, this beatstick provides indirect damage, deck manipulation, a durable 5/5 body, and an activated ability that can quickly turn the tide of the game.  However, not every new creature released is as much of a no-brainer as The Scarab God.  In this article, I describe how I personally render my initial judgment on new creatures when considering whether they will make an impact on Standard or any other format.

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A Handful of Magic Items 7

Picture Credit: Seraph777

We’ve been cooking up some more magic items for you with some of the feedback in mind from our last few sets. Today we have a blade that likes to slay alike foes, a shield that can become a tactical wall, and a staff that is beholden to a certain, infamous monster.

Kinslayer (any melee weapon, requires attunement)
This weapon has a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls. Each time this weapon hits a creature, it gains +1 to damage to all subsequent attacks against creatures of the same type (sub-type for humanoids), up to +4 (including the initial +1). This effect ends if you target a creature of another type with this weapon, or after 10 minutes of inaction.

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Persuasion Check: Unearthed Arcana – Order Domain

We’re officially a quarter of the way through the year, and what better way to celebrate that completely arbitrary achievement than with a new cleric domain? The Order Domain puts the lawful in lawful good/neutral/evil.

On the face this looks like an exciting new domain that keeps a nice cleric flavor, but seemingly presents them in a similar light to their martial counterpart, the paladin. Also, when I took a look back in January’s Unearthed Arcana, I was asked to give a little more analysis, so I’ve tried to throw some in there without breaking out the calculator. Let me know how you like this or if there’s something else I could be doing to give these Persuasion Checks advantage! Read More

[Brawl][Budget] Angrath, the Flame-Chained and his Rakdos Pirates ($18 Paper/4 MTGO Tix)

On March 22, 2018, Senior Magic Designer Gavin Verhey published the rules to the new Brawl format in an article titled “Join the Brawl.”  Gavin describes Brawl as a casual format that has the benefit of being an entry point to the larger Standard Constructed format.  Now, I disagree with Gavin that Brawl should be used as an entry point into Standard.  That’s what the Challenger Decks are for.  Instead, I see Brawl as a way to reuse “draft chaff” (the cards you get to keep after a draft) and otherwise noncompetitive Standard cards.  I also see Brawl as a way for a new Commander player to learn to play Magic without being thrown into twenty-five years worth of broken Commander cards.  That’s enough of an introduction, let’s check out the deck!

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Faithless Looting: Pawn Shop on “Hobby Street” in Boston

Earlier this week, I was hastily walking through the streets of beautiful historic Downtown Boston in the Springtime.  It was about fifty degrees and twenty mile per hour wind gusts were blasting my face.  The street that I was walking on had a steep incline and my shins were aching.  I had just finished grocery shopping and, with a paper bag filled with frozen foods in each hand, I felt like my arms were going to fall off.  My head was down to avoid eye contact or conversation with other less-than-friendly pedestrians.  While catching my breath, I looked up and saw this:

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25 Wizard Tower Adventure Seeds

Picture Credit: fractal2cry

We’re back with more Adventure Seeds, and today we take a trip to the wizard’s tower outside of town! I wanted to challenge myself yet again by using a very narrow geographic area that is also highly specialized. Needless to say, a challenge it was!

A lot of these started out as ideas that could be encounters or traps within the tower, and I reverse-engineered them to come up with a more general seed to use. Of course, this worked better for some more than others, so some of these seeds may be a bit more direct in their direction than seeds in previous installments. Still, it was fun writing these, and I look forward to writing the next set! Anyway, here are all the assumptions I made when writing these:

  • The tower is a single structure, potentially with a shed or other small outdoor building nearby;
  • The nearest civilization is a nearby small or medium sized town that interacts or interacted with the wizard at some point, but not necessarily daily;
  • The wizard who lives there, if inhabited, is mysterious and keeps to themselves, even in situations where they appear friendly;
  • and, if the wizard is hostile to those nearby, they go to great lengths to hide this fact since they still require the town for supplies and trade.

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