The Mana Pool
Join Brian, Mike, Dirk and Chewie as they discuss all things Magic: The Gathering. Since there are plenty of tournament and strategy podcasts out there, we've decided to focus on the fun of the game in all its many forms, from Prereleases to multiplayer free-for-alls to whatever else we can come up with. Give us a listen!
Greetings one and greetings all. This is Brian, taking a break from rambling on the air (internet?) waves to do some typing for you. Here you'll find Episode 60 of the Mana Pool, now with 75% less Dirk (don't worry, he'll be back, he's just experiencing recent matrimony, that's all).


In this episode, there's some news that we need to go over. And when I say some news, I mean so much news that you might think that this was a news show or something. Seriously. We go over Cardshark member promotions for December, talk about Wizards' prerelease survey and related changes, the banned and restricted list, changes coming to a Magic Online near you, a brand new Duel Deck set coming out next year, and throw in a quick plug for the ongoing contest being run right here at the Mana Pool. See the links below for all that stuff. Oh yeah, and Worlds 2008 happened too. We'll tell you who won all the good stuff.


After three hours of news, we do have some content for you- binder pulls! What's that mean? Listen in and find out, and you'll soon find yourself flipping/digging/pawing/scratching/eating your way through your collection for hidden gems (Volrath's Dungeon) and lackluster duds (Molten Sentry). This was a fun one to put together, and we hope that you enjoy.


Cardshark Member Promotions

http://www.cardshark.com/member_promotions.asp


Prerelease News

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/feature/13c


Banned & Restricted List Announcement

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/feature/15a


MTGO Changes

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/feature/17a


Duel Decks: Divine vs. Demonic Announcement

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/arcana/1737



Music for this episode: Devour by Shinedown. Totally awesome. Check them out at http://www.shinedown.com


And don't forget to send your contest entries to us at themanapool@cardshark.com. For full contest rules and whatnot, see the link below.

Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-60-news-and-a-binder-pull-two-bits-t274.html

Contest information: the-mana-pool-contest-announcement-t261.html
Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com
Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com
Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com
RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_60_-_News_and_a_Binder_Pull_Two_Bits.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:02pm EDT

Episode 59 - Out of the Deck Box Combo: Auras Chewie here. Mike was good enough to write the show notes for this episode, but there are a couple things that bear mentioning first. Sorry about the horrible clicking sounds that show up for the first 9 minutes or so. We still have no idea what causes them, and we just happened to not check the file after we recorded it. So of course, we have clicking sounds, because we didn't check for them first. Murphy and his stupid laws. The other thing is that I have a brand new headset that my beautiful and thoughtful girlfriend Alexis got me for my birthday. Let me know if it sounds better or worse than the desktop mic. Now, having said that, here are the show notes originally intended for this episode.


Hello again, and welcome to The Mana Pool! This is Mike, filling in for Chewie on the show notes this week. Speaking of this week, every Magic player knows the appeal of a quality "Enchant Creature" card. Why settle for simply playing creatures as-written when you can make them better? Yeah, that knight is pretty decent with his first strike and 2/2 body, but how about making him bigger, giving him flying and trample, and hey, let's throw some shroud on there for good measure. The only problem is that you have to dump a big pile of cards into your graveyard if something happens to the creature. Because of that built in risk of giving your opponent card advantage, most "serious" players avoid them. But "serious" is nothing we've ever taken seriously.


This week we have another comparative Out of the Deck Box feature, looking at what happens when 3 different dorks embrace the allure of the aura and make it the focus of their decks. From Dirk, we have a Green build geared towards making a creature so big, it would send Galactus running for cover. Mike submits a huge pile of White and Blue cards dedicated to exploiting the interactions between great auras and creatures that love to have them around. Finally, Chewie shows us what happens when some Red, White, and Blue auras with CIP triggers are put into a deck made to flip them in and out of play.


Whether it's magical rope ladders, terrible land bases, or way too many ideas in a deck at once, this is another episode with something for everyone.



And don't forget to send your contest entries to us at themanapool@cardshark.com. For full contest rules and whatnot, see the link below.


We're now being broadcast on Radio Free Subspace! We're on Thursday nights at 8pm, but check it out anytime. It's an eclectic mix of all kinds of music and whatnot, and it's pretty cool. Give it a listen here:

http://loudcity.com/stations/radio-free-subspace


Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-59-out-of-the-deck-box-combo-auras-t268.html

Contest information: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/the-mana-pool-contest-announcement-t261.html

Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com

Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com

Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com

RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_59_-_Out_of_the_Deck_Box_Combo-_Auras.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:22pm EDT

Episode 58 - Multiplayer Mayhem for Mike

It's official: Mike is leaving us. Not the show, he'll still be here as the rules guy and the old-school knowledge. But he's physically leaving us to take a job that is about 8 hours away. And he's doing so relatively soon. So he decided that we should all get together and play Magic one more time before he wandered off to the far reaches of what-have-you.


So we did. The four Mana Pool hosts gathered at my beautiful girlfriend's house, had a practice Thanksgiving (Dorksgiving) and played a mess of Magic. We then retired to my fabulous crappy apartment to record an episode live instead of over Skype. We were joined by Kat, Mike's girlfriend, who was sitting on my bed making a cute little robot doll while we recorded. She played the part of the peanut gallery during the show.


And here it is. We had just finished playing seven games of multiplayer free-for-all Magic, and then we came here to bring you all the big moments in every game. We also went over the slow moments. And the one game that we all thought would never actually end. And those couple games that just ended suddenly and with great style. So yeah, you'll get the full story of our (possibly) last gathering of the Mana Pool hosts for the purposes of playing Magic for hours on end. At least the last one that won't be a super-special occasion. We hope you enjoy!


And don't forget to send your contest entries to us at themanapool@cardshark.com. For full contest rules and whatnot, see the link below.


Music for this episode: B.Y.O.N.E.S. (NES Of A Down Extended Mix) by detalub0


We're now being broadcast on Radio Free Subspace! We're on Thursday nights at 8pm, but check it out anytime. It's an eclectic mix of all kinds of music and whatnot, and it's pretty cool. Give it a listen here:

http://loudcity.com/stations/radio-free-subspace


Forum link for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-58-multiplayer-mayhem-for-mike-t267.html

Contest information: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/the-mana-pool-contest-announcement-t261.html

Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com

Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com

Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com

RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_58_-_Multiplayer_Mayhem_for_Mike.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:50pm EDT

Episode 57 - Ancestral Memories For this episode, we are Brian-less. Of all the terrible things that could have happened to cause his absence for this first episode of the new year of casting, this is perhaps the worst. He's lost his voice. Let's hope he survives.


Everyone that plays Magic started playing at some point. Which means that after everyone started playing, there was a new set that came out. This episode is all about our first new set. For Mike, that was Fallen Empires. For me, it was Homelands. Please don't hold that against us, at least we got over it and are still playing. For Dirk, it was Onslaught. We're going to take a look at each new set and explore the world they've created for it, which covers the story and the flavorful aspects. We'll then discuss the mechanical leitmotif for each set, meaning the keywords included and any strong themes running throughout the cards. And of course, the meat of each set review will be a look at the notable cards that originated there. We'll be hitting cards we just really like, cards that are excessively powerful, cards that are historically important, and cards that were just a lot of fun.


So sit back, relax, and take trip down our memory lane as we take a look at our first new sets. For those of you that weren't playing back in these times, especially the dark ages of Fallen Empires and Homelands, you'll get a look at where things were back then, and perhaps an idea of where they're going now.


And don't forget to send us your contest entries! For the full scoop, check out the link below.


We're now being broadcast on Radio Free Subspace! We're on Thursday nights at 8pm, but check it out anytime. It's an eclectic mix of all kinds of music and whatnot, and it's pretty cool. Give it a listen here:

http://loudcity.com/stations/radio-free-subspace


Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-57-ancestral-memories-t263.html
Contest information: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/the-mana-pool-contest-announcement-t261.html

Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com
Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com
Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com

RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_57_-_Ancestral_Memories.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:46pm EDT

Episode 56 - The One Year Episode

Welcome to our one year anniversary episode! To be perfectly honest, there's not terribly much that is completely new and awesome in this show. We really wanted to stick with one of our core concepts, something that the fans really appreciate. So we went over the Cardshark Member Promotions for the month of November and called it a day. You can find them here:

http://www.cardshark.com/member_promotions.asp


Okay, not really. First there's a big announcement about the first Mana Pool Contest. We want everyone to send in their best Magic story. Cardshark.com, our fabulous sponsors, are donating a box of Shards of Alara to the cause, and each host picked out some of their foil rares to add to each winner. For the full list of prizes and the full contest rules and regulations rundown, see the forums. Or click right here:

http://cardshark.freeforums.org/the-mana-pool-contest-announcement-t261.html


As I said, we really wanted to do something that the listeners would really enjoy, a fan-favorite type of thing. So we decided to do an entire episode of Out of the Deck Box! We each picked out one of our decks that we really enjoy and went to town. I told everyone about my Pestilence deck. Brian expounded on his Shared Fate deck. Dirk discussed his Saviors deck. And Mike finished us up with his Big Black Stupid deck. We went through each deck and hit the important cards, the important concepts, the ideal plays, and the reason we love it so much.


Thanks again to everyone who has listened, posted on the forums, emailed us, and generally did anything whatsoever to keep the show going. We appreciate all of you, and we hope to keep entertaining you for the next year to come.



Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-56-the-one-year-episode-t262.html

Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com

Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com

Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com

RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_56_-_The_One_Year_Episode.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:39pm EDT

Bonus Episode 1 - The Outtakes

In honor of our one year anniversary of podcasting, I wanted to give everyone a look behind the scenes.  Here are some of the bits that didn't quite make it onto the feed for your listening pleasure.  The rest is explained in the clip.  Thanks a lot for listening throughout the year everyone, and enjoy the completely non-Magic goodness in this Bonus Episode!

Direct download: Bonus_Episode_1_-_The_Outtakes.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:57pm EDT

To honor our one-year anniversary, we offer you this song for direct download.  By taking sound clips from around 10 episodes and splicing them together with Weapon of Choice by Fatboy Slim and a few of the DELETED buzzer sounds from Strong Bad Emails, Rob Anderson created something we dorks will treasure always. 

 

First featured in episode 52, this piece of audio goodness really captures the personalities of hosts of The Mana Pool.  He cuts down through all the Magic and the content of the show to show you a glimpse of who we really are and why we love doing the show.  So here it is for all to enjoy at your convenience.  I give you No One Expects the Mana Pool by JungleRatRob.

Direct download: No_One_Expects_The_Mana_Pool.mp3
Category:Non-podcast Audio -- posted at: 6:57pm EDT

Episode 55 - Take Your Pick As the race for the Mana Pool Presidency heads to the finish line, the political ad campaigns are starting to get dirty. The last round of ads will be sprinkled throughout this episode so you can have all the information you need when you get to the polls.


In this episode, we're taking a look at the Booster Draft format. Brian did a Shards of Alara draft on Magic Online and saved the results, so we're going to take a look, pick by pick, at the entire thing. We'll check out the cards in each pack and try to figure out just exactly what Brian took, or should have taken, and after we're all done we'll check out the deck he built and he'll tell us how he did with it.


In other news, here's the link to the article unveiling the full decklists for Duel Decks: Jace vs. Chandra.

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/feature/11



Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-55-take-your-pick-t258.html
Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com
Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com
Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com
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Direct download: Episode_55_-_Take_Your_Pick.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:09pm EDT

Everyone loves Out of the Deck Box, right? So why don't we do a whole episode where we each pick one of our many (many) decks and tell you folks all about it? Sound like a plan?


Well tough. We're not doing that. Instead, Brian thought we should each pick a deck that wasn't our own and talk about it. After lots of “huh?” we decided that it was, in fact, a good idea. Brian kicked us off by talking about my old roommate Corey's Sneak Attack deck. Dirk wanted to tell everyone how my Poison Ping deck works. Mike wanted to discuss Dirk's Bird tribal deck. Since I have a Bird deck too, Brian went over it and we spent a while discussing the similarities and differences. We'll have to do this again with some other decks, it's a lot of fun. And I finished things off by expounding on a deck with a very touching origin, Mike's Killer Instinct deck. It's a nice and simple episode, but it was a lot of fun. We hope you guys enjoy it as much as we did.


Oh yeah, if you'd like a look at the decklists in their entireties (is that even a word?), then check out the forum link at the bottom of these show notes. It'll be on the Facebook group too in case you guys wanna check it out there.



Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-54-out-of-someone-else-s-deck-box-t256.html
Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com
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Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com
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Direct download: Episode_54_-_Out_of_Someone_Elses_Deck_Box.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:49pm EDT

Episode 53 - Savoring Shards: Exploring the Flavor of Alara Chewie here. First off, I'd like to apologize for the lateness of this episode. We recorded it almost a week ago, but I've been bouncing back and forth between really busy and seriously exhausted, so it's all my fault. You can spread around the blame with the other dorks if you want though, I'm not going to stop you.


In this episode, Mike thought we should take a closer look at the Shards. Of Alara. Since this is a block just oozing with flavor, everyone seems to be talking more about the flavor and philosophy and whatnot of this one than they have in previous sets. Not ones to stand idly by while the bandwagon trundles along without us, we hopped on. And what a buffet it is! We looked at the flavor of the shards in various ways, including but not limited to:


- The colors that comprise each shard

- The colors that are missing from each shard

- The mechanical identity of each shard

- Citing examples from flavor text

- General setting and feel of each shard


In other news, there's also news in this episode. Wizards recently revealed the name and whatnot for the final set in the Alara block. You can find it, if you are so inclined, here:

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/arcana/1702


Wizards also FINALLY gave us some information about the next iteration of Duel Decks. Jace vs. Chandra is coming Nov. 7, and it looks to be seriously awesome. Two 60-card decks, each with 4 rares, which includes the foil alternate art versions of Jace Beleren and Chandra Nalaar. Six cards get new artwork featuring the planeswalkers in action. Control vs. Burn, baby! I can't wait. Check out the announcement showing some of the art the product information pages in the links below.

http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/arcana/1700

http://www.wizards.com/magic/tcg/productarticle.aspx?x=mtg/tcg/jacevschandra/productinfo



Forum thread for this episode: http://cardshark.freeforums.org/episode-53-savoring-shards-exploring-the-flavor-of-alara-t253.html
Email us at themanapool@cardshark.com
Send me an article at submissions@cardshark.com
Cardshark located at http://www.cardshark.com
RSS Feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/themanapool

Direct download: Episode_53_-_Savoring_Shards-Exploring_the_Flavor_of_Alara.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:49pm EDT