Thursday, February 1, 2018

Magi Nation Duel History - Fans and the Future

In the last article on Magi-Nation Duel, we featured the storyline tournament and set release history.  These were gathered from all information still available, showcasing how a card game company can allow its fans to add elements to the story, and make them feel more involved in the lore by directly being able to influence the results.

Yet, like many early 2000s trading card games, Magi-Nation Duel was financially unsuccessful, and Interactive Imagination was unable to continue operation- and so, officially, the game died.

But fans are fans, and events continued on.  There were several events that still host tournaments for the game, and some started with official Interactive Imagination sponsored events, like the League activities.  Check out some of the images below, as we cover the history of fun-based organized play, and a quick list of memories of other events hosted by fans.  The second part of the article will cover what's currently been ongoing in the past few years and now, as the Magi-Nation community goes on in the second decade of the twenty first century.

Tavel's Travels

Phil Tavel was one of the original creators of the Magi-Nation Duel, and for an official Interactive Imagination promotion, Phil traveled across continental North America to meet fans, do some gun-slinging (games against players for prizes), and sign cards.  Phil visited 30 stores in around 2 months, meeting fans, and challenging players to win a Powers of the Creators promo. 

This is one of the only images remaining of Tavel's Travels throughout game stores, showing Tavel (second from the right) signing a card for fans.  

For one store, Tavel scheduled specific gunslinging battles that would be recorded as a story for fans to read against two of the highest online ranked players in the country, and the story was published on the main Magi-Nation page, alongside which his travel schedule, and winner's list is published. 

The Magi-Nation League

The Magi-Nation League was Interactive Imagination's (2i) project to keep people playing the game in stores while introducing them to the game and not just to the tournament/competitive side of things of Magi-Nation Duel.  Much like other TCGs' leagues, the Magi-Nation League had seasons (7 of them) where players had a track to earn stamps and points on by the games they played in store, following seasons based on the first six regions released in the game, as well as a test league season before that (for Underneath).  Below are the images of the League seasons.   

The Test League season was held to let 2i try and see if there was interest in running leagues, and what supplies were worthwhile.

Naroom Season.  Each season had three paths to promos- Elder, Tracker, and Ringsmith.

Underneath Season.  Each mat had original art from the Magi Nation artists.

The Cald Season.  Each path would get you different promos.  The Elder path earned Magi, the Ringsmith path earned 'Ring' relics, and the Tracker path earned a 'gift' spell.

The Orothe Season.  The best season.  This author is biased towards mer-people.

Arderial Season.  This season was mid to late 2002 at this point, and 2i was beginning to show signs of struggling to continue.

The Core Season. The last season for the first year of the Magi Nation league, there were plans for the second year having the other six regions, and promos were made for Kybar's Teeth, which were released as tournament promos instead once 2i found it unfeasible to release a second set of seasons. 

After organized play and other concerns arose with the game, more fan-initiatives began.  We were able to find a variety of images from events and special hosting activities from the 2000s, but are still working at getting more information!

The Duel in the Desert Tournament

This was an event hosted by ROMzombie at the Phoenix Arizona Hexacon 13 in 2003.
More information is being sought about this event.

Blue Furok

The website is a still maintained Magi-Nation fan site, hosting the most reliable access to all card images, as well as having work done to create custom cards to attempt to continue the game. 

Current Events - Reddit Tournaments

Once Reddit became a force, a Magi-Nation Duel subreddit appeared, and the fans there began hosting tournaments.  So far, 5 tournaments have been hosted since 2015.  These events are all hosted on Lackey, a system to play CCGs online. 

Inaugural Tournament had 8 players in 2015.  The winner was TechnomagusPrime.

The second event, The Regional Tournament, had a restriction where players could only use cards from the region they drafted.  It had 13 players, and was a swiss style event in 2015.  The winner was Khaotyk aka Daedleus.

The third event, the No Restrictions Tournament, had no regional penalty or restriction.  It allowed players to try a variety of different strategies that aren't normally allowed in Magi Nation Duel.  Seven players participated in 2015, and Khaotyk (Daedleus) again was the winner.

The fourth event, a Standard tournament, followed normal tournament rules, and allowed the cards from the Traitor's Reach expansion- and the previously untested Daybreak expansion, which has all the card text online and available.  The event had 4 players in early 2017, and Hershomc was the final winner.

The most recent event, taking ideas from 2i to make a Storyline Tournament was completed in early 2018.  11 players battled for a new story in the moonlands,with the winner being WBSam.  You can see the results and swiss Bracket here.  The fan storyline starts here.  Yaki, picking up where the official storyline left off, uses his corrupted core-sight to start tracking some of the shadow magi's dangerous elements across the moonlands!

More to come, more to see.  The game continues.  Energize your dreams. 

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