Trash for Treasure: Saviors of Kamigawa – Big hand, small effect

It has been quite some time since I released the last “Trash for Treasure” article since they are wordy and clunky to write. However, they still convey useful information (at least, I think they do), so it is worth making more content in which I take a look at the cheaper cards in a set and determine what could be good to work with. I have done the Mirrodin block before, a block filled with powerful cards even at the low-cost range. However, the next entry might be a little bit more difficult: Kamigawa. As I am sure I have mentioned on the blog before, I do like the old Kamigawa with its conflict between the material and ethereal, but WotC blew it in fear of creating a lasting power creep situation after the Mirrodin scenario with keywords like Affinity. Starting with Saviors of Kamigawa, we have quite a lot of weird themes to work with. The entire set was themed around the idea of simply having lots of cards in your hand for bonuses, which kind of entails not playing the options you have in hand which is unhelpful. WotC also created keywords and cycles to make sure that your hand is packed, with the ill-fated Sweep to destroy your own mana base, cycles that bounce your own creatures for little gain, and the absolute madness that is the Epic keyword which basically makes you unable to play. But there might be yet something worthwhile in the card pool below the 0.10€ threshold, so without further ado let us take a look at the lantern has in store for us.

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Budget Deckbuilding: Selesnya United

Anyone who is a member of my old player group can vouch for my love of Fungi and Saprolings as a theme in Magic the Gathering. Hell, I did so much with those little plants that I was known as “Pilzmann” (German for mushroom man) back in the day. I did quite a lot of deckbuilding over the years, but token decks were really the one thing that I was known for. Whether it was a standard Convoke-focussed theme, a Black-Green deck with some insane card draw, or some weird build using “Dogpile” for maximum damage, I invested a lot of time making the most out of Saprolings. Which brings us to today’s deck: “Selesnya United”, a White-Green Preconstructed Deck using the power of the masses to pay for costs and kick some faces. White-Green Token Decks can really go a number of ways, and Ravnica’s Selesnya guild certainly helped make them that way. So, let us take a look at what the conclave has to offer.

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The Videogame Corner: Encased

Game: Encased: A Sci-Fi Postapocalpytic RPG
Developer: Dark Crystal Games
Genre: Role-Playing game
Releases: 2019 (PC)

On the Blaugust Discord channel, we have a small community project in which we write articles for videogames that are featured in the monthly Humble Choice bundle. After a few months in which I was willing to write but the selection of games was not really appealing to me, the January 2023 selection actually offered titles I could see myself investing time into. Cue “Encased”, the self-titled “Sci-Fi Postapocalpytic RPG” from the Russian developer Dark Crystal Games. I was not even aware of the game before I saw it listed in the Humble Choice, but I played a few isometric role-playing games before and was definitely interested to see what this one had to offer. By the way, there are obviously more Humble Choice articles for January 2023 from various bloggers, the list being as follows:

So, with that being said, here are my thoughts on “Encased: A Sci-Fi Postapocalpytic RPG”:

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Yugioh Deck Review: Starter Deck: Kaiba Evolution

And here is part two of the upgraded Starter Decks: “Starter Deck: Kaiba Evolution”. I still do not understand why Konami decided to throw an updated Starter Deck into the ring with only a small timespan between the releases and some questionable additions like a small Ritual engine; but they did it anyway. If you read the article for “Starter Deck: Kaiba”, you will find that a lot of the cards are the same, which makes the release somewhat questionable. But enough of that: The deck exists and I am here to talk about it, if only briefly since there is not that much strategy going on in decks from the early days of Yugioh. So, without further ado, I present to you “Starter Deck: Kaiba Evolution”:

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Vampire Survivors Clones – New Formula, Different Applications

They told me I could become anything, but I was not aware that this option was on the table.

“Vampire Survivors” certainly caused quite a storm in the video game world when it started becoming popular. It managed to turn the “One more turn…”-phenomenon of the “Civilization” series into its own “One more run…”-philosophy. I happily admit it: “Vampire Survivors” is fun and addicting; so it was only a matter of time before other game development studios made their own versions. It’s only natural, imitation being the sincerest form of flattery after all, but for me as a videogame consumer the question is if any of those games are worth my time or whether I should just stick with the original. With that thought in mind, here are a few short reviews of “Vampire Survivors”-esque games that I have played over the last few weeks, both to give you, dear reader, an idea of what the market has to offer as well as keeping me from posting all those short reviews as singular reviews for the Saturday slot. So, without further ado, here are six games that might or might not pique your interest if you have played “Vampire Survivors” before:

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Budget Deckbuilding: Charge of the Boros

After the blast from the past that was the Mirage block, we now get to talk about one of the best scenarios WotC ever created; and one that they sadly overused to the point of people losing interest in it: The Ravnica block. Starting with Ravnica, City of Guilds, we get to know the ten guilds that rule the giant metropolis, each representing one double-color-combination. We start with the Ravnican police force and military branch in form of the Boros Legion, and their Preconstructed Deck “Charge of the Boros”. This White-Red guild was quite a competitive force back during the times of Ravnica’s release, and their guild members certainly know how to deliver a punch or two. Needless to say, I have high hopes that we can do a lot with this deck.

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The Videogame Corner: Slime Rancher

Game: Slime Rancher
Developer: Monomi Park
Genre: Farming Simulation, Adventure game
Releases: 2017 (PC, Xbox One), 2018 (Playstation 4), 2021 (Nintendo Switch)

Recently, I played “Slime Rancher 2” after it was gifted to me on Steam; and a review for that game will eventually appear on this blog. However, in my opinion before I can even go near reviewing that game, I should start with the first installment of the series that I spend quite a lot of time with. “Slime Rancher” is quite an interesting game in my opinion. It uses cuteness and charm as a major design element and combines this with battery farming the poor semi-liquid critters for all they are worth. That sounds harsh, I know. In fact, “Slime Rancher” is actually a kid-friendly experience that was a surprise hit back in 2017, which is all the more impressive if you read up on the team’s stance against crunch culture. And, rather a me-problem, it is a game that I wanted to write about for quite some time but never found the right words for before. So, in order to change that, here is my review for “Slime Rancher”:

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