[games] Magic: The Gathering (Redux)

I pulled out some of my old Magic decks this weekend. I haven't played in a long time and Dollar expressed an interest. I brought my stuff over to his place and let Adam use my blue and red deck while Dollar used his own green and white deck. Now at one point, when Dollar wasn't getting any land and therefore wasn't a threat, I directed all my attacks toward Adam. He had a 2/2 creature out and I played an instant to give it -2/-2, which means that that creature DIES. Here's what happened:

AMY: And I'll play this instant and give your troll -2/-2.
ADAM: [shrugs] Okay.
AMY: So it dies.
ADAM: No it doesn't. That's just affecting it's attack and defense, so it's defense is zero now.
AMY: Yeah, which means it's dead.
ADAM: No it's not. It's just at zero.
AMY: ...

I let it slide, but on the inside I was like, "MEGA-BITCH: ACTIVATED!" I thought that if you brought a creature's defense down to zero (or less), that creature dies. In fact, I am right: "The second number is its toughness; if it receives that much damage in a single turn, it is destroyed, and sent to the graveyard." I spent the rest of the game trying to slaughter Adam and Dollar. Adam even left the game early, I think because I was taking all the fun out of it.

So here's the dilemma: I play as hard and as carefully as I can, whatever game I'm playing. I'm not a sore loser (I think) and will always want to play again. But if I'm so serious about it, is that ruining it for the other players? It's just a friendly game, not the World Championship of whatever game it is. Take this for example:

Angela game over to play Balloon cup. She plays a card that hurts my chances of winning a specific race and I sit, thinking about what I should do next. Angela takes my lack of playing as a sign that it's her turn and plays another card. What I should have said was: "Excuse me, friend. You just played a card and now it is my turn. I apologize for taking so long." What I did was screech: "What are you doing? It's my turn!"

Amy needs to take a chill pill. I think my problem is that I'm more focused on winning than enjoying the game. But I think winning is important, so I want to play right. Which makes me act/sound/behave like a nit-picky bitch. So... So what should I do? Take a valium before every game I play? And when someone asks, "What's the rule about this?", I'll just say, "Whatever man, just, like, do whatever you feel is right." No! There are rules for a reason! AGGH I'm getting stressed out just thinking about it!

I will admit that before the Magic game started and I was looking through my cards, I probably shouldn't have laughed maniacally and said, "You guys are dead. I'm going to kill you guys dead. Dead dead dead. Give up now, it's over."


Diana said...

get baked

Angela said...

You really hurt my feelings Amy. I could have been all sore and bent your cards or something, but I didn't, b/c I don't take it THAT seriously...
(like *ahem* some people)

The REASON for playing a game is to have fun, the POINT is to win, so there's nothing wrong with wanting to win. But, you don't have to YELL at someone for making a mistake.

I like the Balloon game- when do you get back from your trip so we can play again?

Bill said...

Amy, what you need to do is game with like-minded people. I have the exact same dilemma and it's always a struggle to find the pulse of the room and behave accordingly. There are others out there that take the rules (and winning) seriously, and in fact derive fun from the seriousness of it. Actually yelling at a friend might be over-stepping things a bit (esp. if you know she isn't as invested as you) but hey, we get invested and things get serious. Empathy for the feelings of others goes both ways, right?

I never played Magic, but Emily and I are big Carcassone fans (and we just got Settlers of Catan and are looking for some folks to play with).

Angela said...

Bill- it's really okay if Amy yells at me, it kinda turns me on... or makes me laugh, the same.

Mark Sasahara said...

If she gets too snappy, just ask her how her Kiri lace shawl is coming along.