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June 24, 2016


Ertai’s Lament Site Update (Plus a Teaser)

by Dredd77

Good evening!

Time for another of the periodic “site news” posts about the state of Ertai’s Lament. These tend to be a bit dry, but I like to keep folks informed. As a reward, there’s a little preview teaser at the end that should get a few folks excited. 

I: A New Schedule

Longtime readers will know that in my first run of the site, from 2010-13, I posted a new article every 48 hours. Yeah, let that sink in. Of course, that was before I had four young children, so my free time these days is a bit wonkier.

Still, I know people enjoy a schedule as much as it helps me to have one. I’ve been back long enough now that I’ve got a good sense of what’s possible, and I’m excited to announce that I’m going to be shifting over to an actual schedule. Not only will this let folks know when to check back for more content (rather than the present system of “whenever I post it), but it will also help me in scheduling what sets I am going to do in the future. It will also help keep Part 1 and Part 2 contiguous, as they should be.

The new schedule is one deck per week:

Mondays – Part 1

Wednesdays – Weekly precon column at Gathering Magic

Friday – Part 2

This doesn’t take into account the non-review content we’ve historically done, like Prconstructed Championships, that is considered “bonus content” and doesn’t take the place of regularly scheduled content.

It will take us a couple weeks to “get on schedule” since we have a lot of Part 1’s that need Part 2’s, but once we’re caught up, look for the schedule to be in effect.

II: Twitter

Back when I started this site, I also joined Twitter to engage about Magic: the Gathering under the handle @ErtaisLament. That continued for awhile, but with the running of my store and break from Ertai’s Lament, it became increasingly dedicated to my other major passion: soccer. At some point, I even changed my handle to @77_Dredd.

If you were to read my Twitter feed now, you’d have to sit through loads of soccer content. It’s not a great medium for people with more than one passion. So… I’ve decided to break them apart. You can now follow me on Twitter for MTG-related content at @ErtaisLamentMTG.

And that’s it! If you’ve come this far, thanks for sticking it out. Here’s that teaser I promised.


Yeah, it’s coming…

Read more from News, Uncategorized
9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Gobias
    Jun 25 2016

    Loooove the Championships…can’t wait!

  2. gobias
    Jun 25 2016

    Can’t wait for the 14-15 Championships.
    Is it still going to be the “pick the winners of the semi-finals and then the winner of the final” all in one go format?

    • Jul 2 2016

      Yep, it’s going to be just like it was before… although as you’ll see, there’s an expanded field this season. I’ll have the introductory post for it coming up within the week!

  3. westbrook57
    Jul 2 2016

    Could you possibly go over EMN spoilers?

    • Jul 2 2016

      Since my focus is more on the finished decks, it’s difficult to do that here.. but I think you’ll enjoy the upcoming Wednesday piece over on Gathering Magic I’ve got. /dramatic foreshadowing

  4. signofzeta
    Jul 2 2016

    Do you count the 33 card decks you find in the 2 player starter set from 8th edition and 9th edition as a preconstructed deck?

    Similarly, do you count the free sample decks and welcome decks as a preconstructed deck?

    When you collect preconstructed decks, what are your parameters as to what counts as a preconstructed deck and what doesn’t?

    Here are my parameters:

    The product must have a mention of a deck, either through the name, like “Event Deck”, or a description in the back, like a 100 card deck, 2 60 card decks, or two decks etc.

    The product must have a UPC barcode.

    A product that has exactly the same packaging, but at least one deck isn’t the same for that same packaging, like Shadows over Innistrad booster battle packs, don’t count.

    From the first 2 paragraphs above, the decks from the core game 2 player starter set count, but the sample and welcome decks don’t count for the fact that they do not have a UPC barcode. The fact that the Welcome Deck being inside the Shadows over Innistrad Booster Battle Pack also don’t count because the rule that each specific deck must have a specific packaging isn’t followed, as you pretty much get any combination of 2 welcome decks, but if there were 5 different packaging each with 2 decks, and each of the 5 packaging has specific deck for one of 2 decks, while the second deck is random, then they count, for example, if the Welcome Deck wasn’t free, and thus had a UPC barcode, then they count.

    So what are your parameters as to what counts as a preconstructed deck in terms of collecting them?

  5. signofzeta
    Jul 2 2016

    I meant in the 4th paragraph, at if the packaging is the same, at least one of the decks must be the same for it to count. Shadows over Innistrad Booster Battle Pack, although it says two 30 card decks in the back, which satisfies the first parameter, doesn’t count because the product might have the White welcome deck and Blue welcome deck, and another copy, with the same packaging, might have the Black welcome deck and Green welcome deck. If the product consistently had a Red welcome deck for one of the decks, and the other deck was any of the other 4 colors, then the Shadows over Innistrad Booster Battle Pack would count.

  6. Insidious
    Jul 2 2016

    Waiting for the Championships… these were always among your best articles…

    Since you are interested in soccer, how about making the Championships akin to a Soccer World Cup with a first round, consisting of groups of 4 decks each, playing against each other, with only the best deck advancing to the next round? This would have the advantage that a deck can come back after one unlucky loss… of course, that´s a lot more work for you…

    Another question: How do you integrate the Clash Packs? As two different decks or as one combined deck?

  7. signofzeta
    Jul 3 2016

    For the 2016-2017 precon championships, there will be 17 precons in total, that is, if you don’t count the planechase anthology.

    What I suggest there is for the 8 planeswalker decks to immediately get in, as well as the 4 duel deck decks. To get the final 4 spots, the 5 commander decks face each other at least once, winner gets points, loser gets no points. The last place deck doesn’t get in.

    It would be better if every precon faced each other once, or twice if you have the time, where winner gets points, loser gets no points. Who faces who is determined by number of points, 1 vs 16, 2 vs 15 etc. The decks are re-seeded in the next round so that it is always team with most points vs team with least points, and team with second most points vs teams with second least points. There are 17 decks and only 16 decks make it in, meaning one deck won’t make the playoffs.

    To make it even a better experience, kind of like real sports, have all 17 decks play a season, meaning each deck faces each other twice, and have the top 8 decks make the playoffs. This would make the championship longer. That’s 279 matchups, close to 1.3 days per matchup.


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