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  • posted a message on Where would you take the Magic storyline?
    Quote from Dunjohn
    Just for the record, Mr. King hasn't written anything for Magic for years.

    yeah i know, but he was getting pretty bad with it there at the end. the new writers aren't much better in that regard, or at least, up until futuresight. i gave up after that. too much filler thats nothing more than stabbing things.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Where would you take the Magic storyline?
    in retrospect i should have made this post in this thread, but i kind of got going...and well here's a link at least


    edit: i mistakenly forgot to comment on the level of fighting/gore in the series as of late. that needs to end. yes its fantasy, but i want some talking between page after page after page of slaying. gets boring. gets redundant. i'm looking at you mr. king.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Are the books really any good?
    bradywalkers while crappy, can work.

    rather than simply focus on characters that weren't planewalkers ala brothers war/the thran/the gathering dark, they were destroyed and reinvented. ok, sure, fine, ridiculous, but it could be workable.

    the major problem is that, while they might be fairly interesting on the cards. where are the stories? the novels should be focusing on them. there was no point in changing the nature of planeswalkers to make it easier to write about, and then not writing about them. where is the logic to that? potentially beautiful characters were created, and then not explored. at all. in favor of alternative characters.

    so why not have just left things alone and gone the way the new storylines went? why revamp everything and then forget about it?

    my biggest gripe is changing it at all. i hate to continually use the same novels as examples, but, the brothers war had no planeswalker protagonist nor a planeswalking antagonist, nor a planeswalker coming and being like 'no' and changing the entire story like is so often referenced by the staff. neither did the gathering dark, nor the thran. even the books dedicated to urza didn't do this. so why is this constantly referenced as a reason why the entire system was changed?

    why are the few books that did have planeswalkers showing off the true extent of their power the standard instead of the exception? aren't planeswalkers supposed to be incredibly rare throughout the multiverse? why would they even care what was going on anyway (except in the case of the invasion which effected everything) why is the focus on them at all? behind the scenes players is fine (the way it once was), afterall thats part of what made just about all the storylines prior to invasion pretty satisfying, focusing on a major character that was still fallible in mortal ways. why was that changed, then abandoned for being too difficult in the first place?

    give me a reason to care about the story. make it about the bradywalkers if thats the thing thats being touted. this is honestly as silly as say (to use references that geeks might get), creating the enterprise and its crew, then focusing on some unknown alien species on a planet unrelated to the federation. or creating the x-men and instead writing stories about normal humans and only vaguely referencing mutants. what was the point. change for the sake of change is almost never a good thing, and it makes clear that money was the true motivator in this decision.

    further more the cards and stories need to have greater cohesion, or none at all. its an all or nothing or it doesn't work. just like an abundance of places and people in the cards, that don't exist in the story, in favor of characters that don't exist in the card game is counter-productive and creates a conflict of ideas which in turn makes the stories very boring. part of the draw is to see elements of the game in action and not leave everyone with questions of 'what is this things part in it all why does it have a card and not a story, why does it have a story and not a card'. by creating stories about the cards the player is immersed even further in the game or yet further into the story, because its easier to relate to. to compare it to the world of warcraft ccg, theres a card game that borrows almost all of its elements from the video game, and it serves a dual purpose to draw in anyone familiar with either. of course by the same token i shouldn't have to play the game to understand the story, so optimally the novels should be treated as independent devices with elements from the card game meant simply to further the story, which is something that was originally captured fantastically well, when we again use the brothers war, the gathering dark, and the thran as examples.

    so having said all of that in favor of greater cohesion, if we make the books and cards have no cohesion, we can treat the novels as novels without a single element from the cards other than taking place in the same universe. this leaves quite a bit of area to explore. this also allows them to be treated as true novels, as legitimate works of literature rather than a quick way to make a dollar and simply set them in the magic universe. for instance use the examples of the original core set of alpha/beta. all about the gameplay. no story. with stories set in the universe when the time for novelization came. however the problem at that time was lack of consistency between the novels, and the cards, at all. what went on in one story made no sense with another, made no sense with anything going happening in the universe by way of the cards, and just made it all generally overly confusing. hence the original retcon and shift. personally, i feel this is the direction that should not be taken with the storylines or game, ever again.

    regardless, things need to be explained at least a little. why did this event happen, why did this character act this way. piecing it together from flavor texts (which are also very poorly written and overly cliche) and novels and rumor on the internet defeats the point of the novel. if it can even be explained by those means. typical trends show that the majority of things can't be. a great many plot devices just don't work and make no logical sense. the original books left things open to interpretation, but in ways that sparked discussion in terms of potentiality, rather than simply wtf? which is so often the case with these new stories.

    that brings up another point. the flavor text. the old style of flavor text helped explain the story and the world. it let the player know what was going on without reading the book, and it gave a basis to go on for the novels as well. the general trend in flavor text recently, explains nothing. they are simply cliche quips, or independent events that have no bearing on the next. this is the wrong kind of flavor, as in it has none. its tasteless and unmemorable. not everything needs to be super descriptive, sure, but there still should be a greater degree of this going on.

    in short, think for a minute about the people playing the game and reading the stories rather than about the almighty dollar, or the game will continue to dwindle on into nothing. ending up in the end as nothing more than another failed ccg.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Where would you take the Magic storyline?
    what eid said.

    also, it bothers me that the weatherlight saga is touted as a failure by wotc. have they explained why? i don't remember seeing that anywhere. just that 'it was a lot of hard work for little pay off' yeah well no ****, thats how making a coherent story goes. did they expect some kind of global endorsement with the magic logo being stuck on everything as a result?

    regardless, it was infinitely better than the pile of garbage that is the new story line. i mean, how many years now of people complaining about it? dwindling book sales? less people even noticing? this new direction is an obvious success, right? right? yeah...way to not want to admit you've made a mistake or take appropriate action to correct it...nope, just keep shoveling the same **** out there, making it worse with each new set, limiting the plot even further...wait, are we even including plot any more or is it just random strings of events? i sure as hell can't tell.

    ...yes i'm bitter.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Are the books really any good?
    Quote from Maybe Eid
    My opinions:

    The Colors of Magic - C+
    The Myths of Magic - C-
    The Dragons of Magic - D-
    The Secrets of Magic - B
    The Monsters of Magic - F

    Weatherlight Saga:
    The Thran - A
    The Brothers' War - A+
    Planeswalker - C
    Time Streams - B-
    Bloodlines - B+
    Rath and Storm - C
    Mercadian Masques - C+
    Nemesis - B+
    Prophecy - F
    Invasion - C-
    Planeshift - C-
    Apocalypse - C-

    Ice Age Cycle:
    The Gathering Dark - A
    The Eternal Ice - B+
    The Shattered Alliance - B-

    Magic Legends Cycle:
    Johan - F
    Jedit - D-
    Hazezon - D+

    Magic Legends II Cycle:
    Assassin's Blade - B
    Emperor's Fist - B+
    Champion's Trial - D-

    Otaria Crapfest:
    Odyssey - F
    Chainer's Torment - B+
    Judgment - C+
    Onslaught - D+
    Legions - F
    Scourge - F

    Mirrodin Cycle:
    The Moons of Mirrodin - D-
    The Darksteel Eye - F
    The Fifth Dawn - C

    Kamigawa Cycle:
    Outlaw: Champions of Kamigawa - B
    Heretic: Betrayers of Kamigawa - B
    Guardian: Saviors of Kamigawa - B

    Ravnica Cycle:
    Ravnica, City of Guilds - B+
    Guildpact - B
    Dissension - C+

    Time Spiral Cycle:
    Time Spiral - F
    Planar Chaos - F
    Future Sight - F

    Lorwyn Cycle
    Lorwyn - F
    Morningtide - F
    Shadowmoor - C

    i agree with those ratings almost entirely. except i would've been more harsh on the newer books.

    i stopped playing the game after apocalypse, and kept up with the story instead for a time. the majority of the books after apocalypse i at least read, i didn't like them, but i could get through them (ravnica was the best of the new lot by far).

    for some reason i keep picking up the books when they come out. i keep trying to read them. i get about five pages in, then end up skipping ahead to see if it improves any. they don't. completely unreadable. after the ravnica cycle everything took a major turn for the worse. (though everything between apocalypse and ravnica was pretty bad too)

    i've read a lot of bad books, but these have become worse than trash. the storylines are convoluted and poorly written. nothing is explored. nothing is explained. we move from one pointless fight to another with very little in the way of actual plot or dialogue. its a quick buck, and an easy way out of actually having to produce quality and depth to a game that had more than any other, because that takes effort.

    anyway, that all being said, i absolutely loved the older books, i end up rereading brothers war, the gathering dark, and the thran at least once a year. then die a little inside when i have to put them back on the shelf next to such trash as the mirrodin, otraria, time spiral, and lorwyn cycles.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Question about 'walkers/TS
    i thought part of the reason planeswalkers had so much power was not so much because of the spark, yes that allows them to have greater access to those powers and travel the planes, but more so that they could indeed travel the planes

    part of the theory was that the longer you live, the more places you visit, the more familiar you become with the land, the more land you're familiar with the greater your options for drawing mana from it, similar to say putting more cards in your deck, you have access to more

    given that the spark made planeswalkers immortal, and allowed them to traverse the planes, wouldn't part of the power come from that ability? if you can visit countless worlds, you have countless worlds to be familiarized with and thus draw mana from

    so in changing the nature of the spark, haven't they also changed the very nature of the theory of mana?

    look at jodah and barrin for instance, ancient, powerful, while not as powerful as planeswalkers they still have the ability to give almost anyone a run for their money

    anyway, if this is all true, isn't it still theoretically possible for these neowalkers to do the same thing? use their ability to visit various planes and gather the resources to be as gods?

    so essentially the wizards storyline staff became lazy and figured they'd just scrap everything, they've grown worse and worse about this over the years, part of what made the storyline good in the past was its consistency, intricacy and coherency

    but hey who cares what characters do, we can just make news one when we don't want to think things out any more

    yeah i kinda got caught up in my own feelings there toward the end, so what, point is they have no idea what they're doing any more and the storyline has become trash, generic fantasy novel bin here we come!
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Savor the Pulpy Flavor
    yeah i gotta agree with those that have said the gathering dark and arena

    they're two of my favorites because they go so in depth about the nature of spellcasting, while having dynamic characters
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Chandra-Jaya connection
    Quote from herohammer
    They may not be immortal, but they are still WIZARDS. REALLY POWERFUL WIZARDS.they can't auto shape shift etc., but I assume most of them have very great abilities to survive in extremely hostile environments. Sure, you can probably trap them under a mile of ice or something and they wouldn't be able to escape. Like a certain very powerful (evil?) mage.

    I think neo walkers are closer in power to non-sparked Elder Dragons or the most powerful wizards of the ages. Maybe pre ascension Mishra or Urza

    minor point here, misha wasn't a planeswalker, and neither urza nor mishra used magic prior to urza's ascension...

    as for the whole neowalker thing, i haven't decided if i like them or not yet, they remind me of the old style of characters from pre-rev times, if wizards starts killing them all off by the truckload though, they'll be kind of pointless

    and chandra probably learned what she knows from jaya before jaya died from whatever
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Mercadia's upside down mountain
    Quote from Mak
    By "made it that way" I mean Phyrexians may have carved it into that shape. In a passage from the book Volrath thinks of how he's shaped the mountain (figuratively) while he's playing with his shapeshifting powers. Indirect and highly suggestive, but it's a hint. If it was done before his time the locals wouldn't have to remember, considering how distorted their history has become.

    Which is why I mentioned that the Masques novel was written before it. Remember who The Thran's author is. The Masques writer may not have intended the mountain's shape to have been so ancient.

    even if the masques novel was written before the thran it was never directly stated in the novel that it was created that way through any kind of phyrexian science, therefore what was stated in the thran has to be true, regardless of when the novel was written
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Mercadia's upside down mountain
    if you read the thran it mentions that dyfed leaves the goblins and the senators on top of that mountain, with no way down right away, it would only make sense that a city developed there as the people left there found ways to survive, since theres not much point in finding a way down and building a city else where if everything you need is right on top of the mountain, keep in mind there wasn't always a massive city up there

    as for how it can stand being an inverted mountain..well its said again and again that different planes have different properties, its mentioned in quite a few of the books, what makes sense on one plane, arguably including this one, may not make sense on another, just look at pyrulea
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Time Spiral Novel Review *Spoilers*
    it was an ok book at best, way too much combat for my taste, not enough story, it was a little lame to be able to skip over entire chapters of combat and not miss anything plot wise (or to even have entire chapters of combat)

    anyway, i only have one question

    when they're seeing the different planeswalkers that protect the different lands throughout time, and they come to argoth, it was page 193

    "His motion slowed and Teferi found himself high over a different forest one with massive, healthy trees. A beautiful blonde woman dressed all in green stood balanced on the tip of a tall pine. She was weeping."

    who was the blonde woman?

    freyalise hadn't even been born during the time of the brothers war, and titania wasn't a planeswalker, so who was the woman?

    is it supposed to be gaea, finally given an actual form? did they ignore everything they've written about freyalise and its really her, or maybe titania? is it someone else entirely?
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
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