A Simple Introduction to Trading Card Games – Part 2

Trading card games are fantastic. They have deep rules and strategies that require time to understand and master. Each trading card game has a wide variety of tactics. Some decks try to win quickly, while other decks may favor a longer game by building up power slowly. Some decks rely on winning by a specific two or three card combination. If you enjoy mastering complicated rules and strategies, then trading card games are definitely for you.

(I hate to mention grammar but “TCG”, trading card game, is singular while “TCGs”, trading card games, is plural. I hope that helps. –Grammar Jedi)

The best way to learn a TCG is from a friend. That way you can ask him questions during the game. Your friend also becomes a convenient opponent, so you can try out new cards and strategies.

How to buy a TCG. TCGs are typically sold as “starter decks” and “booster packs”.

–Starter decks are a pre-made deck, which is designed for beginners. Starter decks use straightforward cards and strategies.

–Booster packs are randomly assorted cards. For Magic: The Gathering each booster pack costs around $5 and has 14 cards: 10 common, 3 uncommon, and 1 rare.

The difference between starter decks and booster packs is that each starter deck (with the same name) has the same cards inside. Booster packs are random and you never know which cards you will get. Obviously buying booster packs can become very expensive. Magic: The Gathering is a very popular game and you can buy single cards from local shops or from online stores.

Obviously not everyone has a friend that already has a favorite TCG, so your next option is a videogame. Magic: The Gathering has three interactive tutorials (listed at the end of this article), so you can learn the basics of the game.

Although TCGs in general are not very popular there are a number of free online TCGs, where you play against other people over the internet. These free games are similar to free MMOs, some of the cards are free but you have to pay for more cards. Two popular free online TCGs are ? and ?.

And in closing, why do I talk so much about Magic: The Gathering? Because it is the oldest and most popular TCG. I often talk about Magic because it is the TCG that I know the best.

Magic: The Gathering links:

Link (backup link) – Magic Interactive Tutorial (Windows, offline) – This is the best way to learn the basics because you can play the game using simple cards. I played this for hours because it was so much fun.

Link – Learn to play, includes an interactive tutorial, rules, and videos. Read the rulebook AFTER playing a few games. The rulebook is basically just a bunch of facts on how to play the game and it won’t make much sense if you don’t know what is going on.

Link – Duels of the Planeswalkers (Windows, XBox360, Playstation 3) – has a free demo

Next time I’ll talk about:
–Basic rules of Magic: The Gathering
–How to play Magic: The Gathering for free against the computer

Written by: mtgrares (mtgrares@yahoo.com)
Magic: The Gathering Blog


About TheGameGuide

We are two gamers writing about anything that has to do with video games to keep you up to date with the newest and coolest things.

Posted on January 10, 2012, in TCG Tuesday. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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