Magic the Gathering, an Introduction: Now for Something Completely Different….. with SSquirrel76

Written by SSquirrel76

Greetings fellow Planeswalkers!!

For those of you new to the I Rebel site, I’m a new face. I’ve been doing weekly metagame updates for 3 1/2 years for Modern and Pioneer since the format began. I’m also the first mod for the MMCast Podcast, which has traditionally focused on the Modern format, but branched out further during the pandemic. For those who came here while Star Wars: Destiny was still a thing, I did some work for JediGeekGirl for Destiny, usually related to data, but now I’m here to talk about Magic the Gathering. JGG wanted me to give a bit of background about myself, so here it goes. I graduated high school in 1994 and went to college. That fall I saw this cool card game some friends were playing and when I asked about it, they refused to teach me, telling me that if I started playing I would just spend all my money on it. Truer words were never spoken. I forgot about it and spent time not doing well in school and playing tons of tabletop RPGs with friends.

When I went home that summer, one of my friends had gone to the Governor’s Scholar program for a couple weeks…month?..I dunno. When he came back, he had a ton of Magic cards and forced all of us from our D&D group to go to a local store and each buy a 4th Edition gift box. Back then, it was 2 starter decks, a couple of booster packs, and a bag of colored beads to use as counters, plus the pretty thick 4th Ed rules IIRC. I still own the Shivan Dragon and Force of Nature I pulled from that box and got the Force signed by Doug Shuler a couple years ago. I spent a lot of time exploring different colors, but early favorites were Goblin decks w/Ball Lightning and Blood Lust, and G/R aggro decks. Yavimaya Ants, Ball Lightning, Force of Nature, Tinder Wall, Orcish Lumberjack, etc. When Alliances was new, Balduvian Hordes was the chase rare of the set and was a $20 card. Now it’s an unplayable common in M25. 🙂

As more sets came I gravitated toward Black decks around Weatherlight and eventually came back around to the power of Lightning Bolt. I’ve been a Red mage at heart ever since Tempest block. I haven’t really played Standard actively outside of some occasional Arena since the Amonkhet block, so my writing will probably focus largely on Modern. I’m going to write about several different decks in the coming months, but I’m probably starting with a review of Modern Horizons 2. We will see where I go from there, but I have Izzet Prowess, Mono-Green Tron, Infect, and U/W Control built to show a friend how some of Modern’s decks play out if that tells you anything, U/W is definitely less my thing than the others though

I look forward to writing here and see where things go. Good luck to anyone competing in events this weekend and stay safe.


Hagen lives in Louisville, Kentucky w/his girlfriend, 4 kids, and a substantial Magic collection. Main LGS is Through the Decades. When he’s not busy writing about Magic or digging through piles of cards to put together a new deck, he tests software.

Lightning Bolt Stan since day one

If you enjoyed this article, Please consider joining our Discord channel to discuss this article and more.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s