BY LEAH WATSON
FANS of trading card game Magic: The Gathering convened at Good Games Gold Coast in Southport this weekend for the pre-release of the newest set, Kaladesh.
Kaladesh is the 72nd Magic expansion and the first in the Kaladesh block.
With 264 cards in the set, Kaladesh is one of the largest expansions recently released.
Owner of Good Games Gold Coast, Damien Hutchins, says such large launches draw even larger crowds.
“We’re expecting between 280 and 300 people for the Kaladesh pre-release events over the whole weekend,” Damien said.
“Magic is the sort of game that attracts anyone – doesn’t matter how old you are or what other things you’re into.”
First published by Wizards of the Coast in 1993, Magic was the first trading card game.
With vibrant worlds, immersive stories and infinite heroes and beasts, Magic has expanded globally over the years and now hosts millions of players worldwide.
“The thing about games like Magic, which attract a lot of different people, is that it creates a really inclusive social sphere,” Damien said.
“We get lots of players who probably don’t have the best social skills, but they meet people and make friends because of Magic.”
Teachers Robin O’Neill and Briannah Alexander have experienced the social inclusiveness first hand.
“We’re from Toowoomba originally, so Magic is really good socially,” Robin said.
“There are people who play who probably wouldn’t get out much, but come to play Magic every Friday night so there’s definitely a social element.”
A 2004 article in USA Today suggested that playing Magic might improve the social and mental skills of players.
The article interviewed players and parents of players who believe Magic contains a great amount of strategy and vocabulary that people may not be exposed to on a regular basis. Sentiment mathematics and science teacher, Robin O’Neill, agrees with.
“Magic is really good for maths, understanding clauses and even sentence structure,” Robin said.
Kaladesh officially launches on September 30.