Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Rip Off Wizards

I suspect that some people think that I wrote MTG Forge to rip off Wizards, although no one has ever mentioned it. I wrote MTG Forge because it is a different, alternative way to play Magic. Speed chess and other variations don’t take away from regular chess, but they enhance it, and let people view the same game in a different way. Hopefully offshoots like speed chess and MTG Forge help people improve their skills.

I also doubt MTG Forge prevents people from buying cards. In a few of my e-mails people actually said that they went out and bought cards that were in my program because they were so fun to play with. Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker was one such example. Personally I buy about one booster pack per set, I’m a big spender (cough, laughter). Although I do like reading Wizards daily articles and adding cards that stand out, like Thoughtseize.

MTG Forge was designed just to play a quick game of Magic against the computer. This was an unfilled niche and MTG Forge is still the “niche leader.” (I love the phrase “niche leader” and you will see that in future articles, lol.) Without waiting for a human opponent the game seems 100% faster. I really enjoy playing a 5 minute game of Magic.

I am very proud that MTG Forge lets users play sealed or draft. Constructing a powerful sealed deck is very fun and a personal favorite. You never know what crazy card pool you will have. I know sealed is considered the lesser, easier brother compared to drafting, but sealed can be very fun it its own right.

Drafting is similar to real life and lets the user encounter common problems such a bad mana curve, too few creatures, or weak color selection. I’ve stumbled upon all three of those problems and some of my draft decks play worse than my sealed ones. (I have probably included cards that are “too good,” like Ancestral Recall, so drafting is probably too easy compared with real card sets like Lorwyn.) My program does not try to compete with paper Magic or Magic Online, but instead lets the user have a different experience.

1 comment:

void said...

I agree with you that Forge is a different experience, however there is a big difference between chess and collectible games. In the first case for a really low investment you can experience a full game and its every aspect, with MtG you receive only small subset of cards, so many combinations are not possible.

There is a similar case with Games Workshop and its tabletop games. They are chasing and forbidding computer adaptation of their games, because they are frightened that it will decline their sales of expensive figures. The only game who was lucky to reach PC was abandoned by them (and that's probably an explanation) Blood Bowl .