koichi_hirose, in comments here (and if you haven’t nominated me as a G20 Voice blogger yet, then by all means do so!) requests the following post:
My request: what you think about the current state of Magic The Gathering, about the recent blocks, or what decks you prefer yourself.
In general, I’m extremely impressed with Wizards/Hasbro as a support system for Magic and always have been; they’ve got a core understanding of the concept of not just keeping the brand stable but growing it whenever possible, and of designing the game not only for the hardcores but for the casual player as well.
Personally, I barely play Standard (IE “the last few expansions” for nonplayers) right now. I have one Standard deck built – a green/white Elves deck, the cheapest possible deck I could make that was still reasonably competitive (six rare cards) – and I play it every once in a while when I’m in the mood for a constructed tournament. (I will almost always prefer to draft or play sealed deck rather than play constructed.)
Of course, right now Magic’s Standard environment is kind of warped because some of the tribal archetypes introduced in the Lorwyn block (decks built around a single type of creature, such as Elves, Faeries or Treefolk) are so powerful and synergistic compared to anything else that the environment becomes a rock-paper-scissors game of Faeries/Kithkin/Red Deck, and the Alara expansions will be largely window dressing until those tribal decks disappear in October when Lorwyn rotates out of Standard.
(Which is another reason draft is more fun: when I drop a Woolly Thoctar it doesn’t die thirty seconds later, but instead has the impact that a massive fatty creature should have.)
I more frequently play casual vintage multiplayer (using a lot of proxy cards) with my roommates and friends, and that’s good fun, and the Alara cards have been far more effective in that environment. Magic’s a far better casual game than most CCGs and always has been, which is why it’s had so much staying power where most CCGs haven’t.