When you enter the world of Magic: The Gathering – Tactics®, the first thing you will see is the portal. This screen is the gateway to every aspect of the game. From campaigns to tournaments, spellbooks to the Auction House, this is where everything starts. This article will take you on a journey around the portal, explaining the various features you will encounter.
The four big buttons on the screen are labeled: Auction House, Play, Spellbook, and Store.
The Store is where you can purchase booster packs, campaigns, gold, and special single cards. Magic: The Gathering – Tactics will use Station Cash for these types of transactions. Station Cash can be purchased inside the Store by clicking the Add Station Cash button, and gold can be added by clicking the Add Gold button. Once you have Station Cash in your account, you can purchase items. You will see the tabs for the other items inside of the store.
If you click on the Play button you will be taken to a screen where you can choose what format you would like to play. You'll have to pick from Solo Play, Tournaments, Tutorials, or Pick-up Games. Solo Play takes you to campaigns. When you download the game, you'll be given the first five missions for free! Additionally, you'll want to check for free Daily Missions as well. In tournaments you will be able to select from the style of play you prefer. Pick-up games will give you random matches with other players that are interested in casual play. If you would like to play the tutorials, click that button and learn how to battle with your Planeswalker!
Spellbook is the button to click when you want to create a new spellbook, edit an existing spellbook, or just look at your collection. From that screen you can save your spellbooks for campaign or player vs. player games.
Are you interested buying single cards from other players with gold? The Auction House is where you want to go. Whether you're looking to sell some extra spells, or obtain that fourth copy for your favorite spellbook, the Auction House is going to be the place for you. You can use gold to purchase spells from other players, or sell the extra copies of spells you have to earn gold.
On the left, you'll see a button for the very helpful Glossary. That's where you'll be able to quickly reference the rules for the game, and learn more about the various keywords and abilities of your creatures. Under the Glossary your portrait will be displayed along with your level and pvp rank. Below that you will find a list of your friends that are online and a leaderboard with information on the top players in the game.
Across the bottom of the screen is a place to enter redemption codes that will give you special items. Click the Packs button and you'll see how many packs are in your inventory. From there you will also be able to open boosters to add spells to your collection.
The top of the screen has rotating banners that will inform you on the latest news for Tactics, so make sure to keep an eye on that when you log in! There are just four buttons left. The ? button brings up helpful hints on the screen. The gear button brings you to the options for the game where you can adjust your gameplay and audio/video settings. The SC button will bring you to the Store. And lastly, if you click the Exit Game button you'll be pulled out of the fun that is Magic: The Gathering – Tactics.
If you are familiar with the Magic: The Gathering® trading card game, you'll notice that the spells in Magic: The Gathering - Tactics™ are handled a bit differently. Some aspects will be familiar to you such as cost, power, and ability, but other parts will be new such as initiative, move, and range. Below, you'll find descriptions of these new mechanics and more! .
2. Subtype – The subtype relates to what kind of creature this is. Some creatures have effects that work on other creatures. For example, the Death Baron says, "Other Zombie and Skeleton creatures you control get +10/+10 and deathtouch." You can see if you have Zombie and Skeleton creatures by looking at the subtype.
3. Cost – How much and what kind of mana must be spent to pay for this spell. Costs are made up of colored mana and colorless mana. Some spells have no colored mana cost. Colorless mana means that any color of mana can be used to cast the spell.
4. Rarity – The number tells you what set the card is from. The color shows its rarity as seen here:
5. Move – The number of spaces a figure can move on the game map. This movement can be affected by terrain features, other figures, and spells.
6. Power – All figures have a power value that determines how much damage that figure will deal when it makes an attack.
7. Health – All figures have a health value that determines how much damage that figure can take before it is destroyed. Damage remains with creatures until they are healed by a spell or ability or they are destroyed.
8. Initiative – All figures have an initiative value. This determines when that figure acts (where it appears on the Initiative Bar). A figure with a higher initiative acts more often than a figure with lower initiative. For example, an Initiative 5 figure will get 5 turns in the same period that an Initiative 4 figure will get 4 turns.
9. Range – Any figure with a range of greater than 1 is a ranged figure and makes ranged attacks. A figure that attacks an enemy outside of its range does half damage. When a ranged figure is adjacent to the figure it is attacking it also does half damage.
10. Ability – Many figures have ability icons that you can mouse over to see text that explains what that spell does or can do. Activated abilities are also shown on that figure's command bar.
11. Set ID Number – At the bottom right of each spell is its number in the set.
One innovation that has been created for Magic: The Gathering – Tactics™ is talents. Talents give your Planeswalker special abilities that enhance your spellbook and give you new powers. This article explores how to obtain talents and use them. It will also tell you how to reset your talents in case you want to alter where your points are.
Talents give you special abilities in Magic: The Gathering – Tactics. For example, the first talent in the black talent tree is Bloodthirsty Scream.
This is an example of a talent that is always active, which means you won't have to take any action to reap its benefits. With Bloodthirsty Scream, when you cast zombies they will potentially earn a bonus. Staying on the black talent tree, there is another talent called Shadow Ritual.
Unlike Bloodthirsty Scream, you must activate Shadow Ritual. Once you have a talent that requires an activation it will appear in your ability bar.
Talents are gained by spending the talent points you receive when your Planeswalker gains levels. When you complete missions in the Campaign mode and play games in tournaments, your Planeswalker receives experience. This experience grants your Planeswalker a level that is shown on your portrait. Starting with level five, each time you gain a level you will receive an additional talent point to be spent on the talent trees. If you click on your portrait, you will be taken to your profile screen where you can see the talent trees.
Here you can select any of the five colors of Magic. Each color has its own unique tree from which to select talents. Each tree is representative of the color it belongs to. White has some talents that relate to gaining life and soldiers. Green has some talents that relate to gaining additional mana and strengthening your forces. You can select talents from multiple trees. If you want to customize your Planeswalker to be strong in white and green, you are free to select some talents from each tree!
Before you begin clicking away madly on talents, you should note that some talents have prerequisites. Shadow Ritual requires that 30 points have been spent in the black talent tree and that 5 points be spent in the talent called Fear and Terror which is the talent directly above. So while you may select talents from each of the five colors of Magic, you still need to spend talent points from the top down.
Your talents will relate to specific spellbooks most of the time, though some players will choose talents from one color and play a spellbook of a completely different color. Some players will stick with their favorite colors until the end of time, but there are players that will build spellbooks out of every color. To give yourself the best chance to use your talents, you will want to change them from time to time. To do that, just click the Reset Talent Points button on your Profile page. It will cost you 2 Gold, but it will give you all of your points back to spend all over again on new and different talents.
Talents are a fun feature of Magic: The Gathering – Tactics. They allow you to both make your Planeswalker unique, but also very powerful. So, make sure to experiment with different talents to find a winning combination!
Most Magic: The Gathering® players are familiar with tournaments, but open tournaments in Magic: The Gathering – Tactics™ are very different from the normal single elimination or Swiss style tournaments. In an open tournament, the players have a set amount of time to play as many games as they want. Each time a player wins, they score a point. At the end of the time limit, the player with the most points is the winner.
From the main Tactics screen click Play. Next you should click the Tournaments button. Make sure the tournament tab is on Open, and hit Play Now! Open tournaments cost one Gold per game you play. You can sign up for an open tournament at any point during the event, so each player only pays Gold when they participate in a game. From this same screen you can check out the rewards for the tournament as well. Those rewards will change from time to time so make sure to keep up on what is available! Once you are in the tournament, choose a spellbook and you're off!
Another difference in open tournaments is that you can play with different spellbooks each game. You are certainly allowed to play with one spellbook for the entire tournament, but you can also mix it up and play with new spellbooks as well. This is great for trying out new combinations and ideas. You will earn a point for each game you win, but every game is valuable even if you lose. If two players are tied with the same number of points, the player with more games played will place higher.
Additionally, you can enter the tournament at any time during the time limit. You can also leave the tournament at anytime. After the event finishes, players will receive their rewards based on the final scores. This is great because open tournaments fit any schedule. With the ability to join and leave during the event, you can enjoy the more free-flowing nature of open tournaments.
The rewards for an open tournament will change from time to time. They could be anything from individual spells all the way to boosters. The requirements for winning a reward will also change. A player could receive a reward for being in the top 16 scores for the tournament, or they could receive a reward for winning just one game. On top of participation and placement scores, you could earn rewards for getting a specific place, or you could earn rewards for a certain number of wins. You will want to make sure to check out the rewards on the tournament each time you enter to find out the details for your event.
So those are the basics of open tournaments. They are fun, casual, and fit any schedule, so make sure to sign up, have fun, and earn some great rewards!
Magic: The Gathering – Tactics™ booster drafts add a new level of challenge and excitement to playing the game. The idea behind a booster draft is that you start the tournament with three booster packs and eight players. Each player will open packs and choose which spells he or she would like to keep for their spellbook. Coming up with themes and strategies on the fly can be challenging and fun. This guide will show all of the steps of participating in a booster draft.
First, you need to make sure your inventory has three booster packs and 20 Gold. These are the items you will need to sign up for the draft. Once you confirm that you have the necessary items, click the Play button on the main screen. From there you will click on the Tournaments button, and after that you will select the Draft tab. This will land you on the sign up screen for Booster Draft.
Hit the Join Now! Button and you are all set to draft! A message will appear letting you know that three booster packs and 20 Gold will be deducted from your inventory. After clicking Yes, you will be placed into a queue with any other players that have signed up. Once the eighth player joins the queue your draft will begin. If you decide you don't wish to draft, you can click the Leave button and drop out of the queue. Your booster packs and Gold will be returned to your inventory for use later. One of the great things about booster drafts is that they are always available as a tournament option. No matter what time of day, as long as there are eight players that want to play, the draft will kick off automatically. That means you can play in a draft any time!
Once the eighth player joins the draft, you will leave the booster draft queue screen and be sent to the draft screen. All eight players' avatars will be arranged around a table in the upper left hand corner of the screen. This will set your draft position and show you where each other player is positioned as well. On the left side of the screen you can see where your list of spells will go once you have drafted them. In the center of the screen you can see all of the spells in the current pack.
All eight players in the draft will open their first pack. You will see all of the spells in your pack and must choose to select one to keep. To select a spell you must click the Draft Pick button on the left side of the screen after highlighting the spell you would like to pick. After you pick your spell you will pass the remaining nine spells to the player on your right. The player on your left will pass you the remaining spells from their first pack. You will pick one spell from that pack and pass it to your right. You will continue the process of choosing a spell from each pack that is passed to you until the spells run out. All eight players will then open their second pack and start the process over. The difference this time is that you will pass your spells to the left instead. Once the second set of packs has been drafted you will start the process again with your third pack. For this round of packs you will pass back to the right.
You will have a limited amount of time to draft spells from each pack that you see. This timer will start at 30 seconds for the first few spells and will go down to just ten seconds toward the end of each pack. Drafting the spells is one of the most challenging aspects of this format. You have to come up with your strategy on the fly. You may even have to break out of your comfort zone with respect to what kinds of colors you generally play. Another obstacle is that you have seven other players vying for the best spells that come around. There are times when you will be able to figure out what colors people seem to be drafting, and sometimes that can help shift you into the color that is plentiful.
You have your 30 spells, and now you have ten minutes to construct your spellbook. This is the other unique aspect of booster drafts. In other tournaments you will join the tournament with your spellbook already intact. For a booster draft, you will need to select a minimum of 25 of your spells to use for the tournament. You will notice the familiar spellbook screen, but in this screen you will only see your picks from the draft along with these 10 token spells:
Helm of Fortitude
Super Swift Boots
These spells are available for you to use in your spellbook in case you were not able to draft enough of the spells in your colors that you wanted to play or if they fit your strategy. Note that these spells will not transfer to your collection after the draft as they are only available for you to use during the tournament. You will want to build an awesome spellbook to start the tournament, but you will have an opportunity to make changes to your spellbook in between rounds. Now that your spellbook is constructed, hit Ready to confirm your spellbook and to play your first match.
The tournament will last three rounds and is Swiss style. That means that you don't get knocked out after losing a match. Swiss tournaments also pair you against someone with the same record in the event. So if you win your first game you will play someone else that also won their first game. You will be able to make changes to your spellbook in between rounds if something isn't working out quite like you wanted. On top of playing each round to elevate your rank in the tournament, each game will be a valuable experience to practice different ideas with the spells you drafted. One last thing to do is make sure to have fun!
Everyone loves rewards, right? For any of the tournaments you can click on the Rewards button and it will bring up a list of rewards for the event. In booster draft tournaments the top four players will receive rewards. Second through fourth each receive one booster pack, and first place will receive three booster packs. With those three booster packs you can jump right into another booster draft!
Booster draft is the most challenging format for Magic: The Gathering – Tactics, but it is also very rewarding and fun. You not only get to play with your spells in the tournament, you can also use these new spells to improve your existing spellbooks. When you combine that with the potential rewards you may earn, booster draft is a great format in Magic: The Gathering – Tactics.