Sand Silos

Just over a year ago I began to buy commons in an effort to build a well rounded play-set pauper library of staple cards of the format.
I swear, at some point I intend to play again.
I’ve also been picking up lesser and janky rares and uncommons as well, cards that I find interesting, nostalgic or just pretty.
This week I finally got the last card to complete a full play-set of the rare slot storage lands from Fallen Empires…Sand Silos.

Took forever to get that last Silo, well a year anyway.
May not seem like a big deal, but I’m frick’n stoked.

Fifty Feet of Rope

An old sci-fi bookseller once asked me this question.

“What is the golden age of Science Fiction”?

I was tempted to answer with a close approximation of a date I thought was the golden age but I couldn’t get it out in time and my pause nudged the bookseller to reveal the truth.
My answer, or any would have been incorrect anyway.

The seller slyly stated “The Golden Age of sci-fi is”.

Pausing briefly.

“12 years old”.

Of course it is…of course it is.

The answer/punchline speaks of an age, any age really, where one’s imagination burns brightly at the input of new electric ideas, of forbidden knowledge attained and of fantastical images over saturated with color blazoned upon wrappers of pulps, books and magazines.
Something that once seen cannot be unseen, something that resonates so deeply in a person that it forever changes them, binding them tightly within its grasp creating a gleeful sojourner along a zealot’s path.

An overly romantic take on the answer?

The question can be applied to a great many things.
‘What is the golden age of ‘fill in the blank’?

The answer is still the same, it’s not a date.

I belong to a certain alphabetic generation and because of that I was fortunate enough to have played my 3 favorite games; Dungeons & Dragons, Magic: The Gathering and World of Warcraft during what I believe were truly their chronological golden ages…though that’s probably an arguable point.

But whether I was 12 or 26 or 39 it mattered not, each affected me profoundly.
Each I played for a period of time and each I eventually stopped playing…for various reasons.
But, I never truly gave up on them and deep down I knew that I was simply taking a break rather than quitting.

Magic: The Gathering arrived in my world after a long hiatus from playing D&D.
To this day I cannot remember how or where I found it, it may have found me, but in late 1994 I was opening packs of Revised and Fallen Empires knowing full well I was addicted. 

Ultimately Magic got 10 years of my attention but by 2004 I was no longer enjoying it. Competitive play, which I willingly went into, had sucked all the fun out of the game and more matches of rage and anger took the place of casual joyful play.
After several months of soul searching I sold my collection and promised myself not to return until I had forgotten how to play and/or became excited about the game again, like I was in 1994.

And that, was that.

July 2021

I wasn’t looking for it but once again Magic found me when I stumbled upon an article about the newest Magic set: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms (AFR) a Dungeons & Dragons themed expansion.
And just like that, Magic was back in my life.

The old obsessions returned immediately as I read the article, wanting to collect the entire set.
Just AFR, nothing else, just this one set…and any other subsequent D&D related expansions.

Things had changed since I last opened a pack and looking through the card list I needed to wrap my head around alternative art cards, full art, extended art, showcase and commander cards, which had a foil version and which did not, dungeon cards, art cards and…what the fring was a collector pack?

Mostly though I wanted to play, did it really have a D&D feel?

So I set off on my quest to discover the answers to my questions and now feel ready to offer up my modest insights and opinions about the cards and observations on play with a little hindsight and perspective from a 17 year break from the game.

And though this will not be timely subject matter as AFR was released 5 months ago, a veritable eternity, I feel a deeper dive is in order to explore the set, the game and myself I suppose as I return to a once loved then reviled game in my life.
This will take some time to work through.

For the time being, I will simply start with this post.

Now, what’s next?