Magic: the Gathering Dominaria prerelease

ome to a rich variety of terrain—cold mountains, wide plains, jungles, deserts, islands—this plane boasts countless historic locations, from the volcanic continent of Shiv to the time-shattered isle of Tolaria to the wretched island of Urborg.

It’s also the birthplace of brothers Urza and Mishra, master artificers who discovered ancient stones of power in the Caves of Koilos. In their lust for power, the brothers waged a savage war against each other, devastating Dominaria and plunging the plane into an ice age. At the end of this war, Urza discovered the dark plane of Phyrexia, a hell of flesh, metal, and grease, where the line between living and artificial was blurred.

Phyrexia nearly invaded Dominaria, were it not for the skyship Weatherlightand its crew. The famous flying vessel contained ancient magical technology that enabled the ship to planeswalk. The Weatherlight, its crew of heroes, and a collection of artifacts called the Legacy (including the Planeswalker, Karn) were all instrumental in thwarting the invasion.

Dominaria was also the epicenter of the temporal-planar fractures that threatened all the planes. A host of cataclysms, many caused by Planeswalkers, left Dominaria desolated, destabilizing the fabric of the Multiverse. The damage to time and space spread outward from Dominaria and started affecting other planes. A handful of powerful Planeswalkers intervened to mend the rifts, thus restabilizing all the planes.

Tournament starts at 6:30.

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Store splash: Compounded/Geiger expansion

Compounded is a game about building chemical compounds through careful management of elements, a fair bit of social play and trading, and just a bit of luck. In Compounded, players take on the roles of lab managers, hastily competing to complete the most compounds before they are completed by others – or destroyed in an explosion. Some compounds are flammable and will grow more and more volatile over time; take too long to gather the necessary elements for those compounds and a lot of hard work will soon be scattered across the lab.

Although Compounded does involve a fair share of press-your-luck tension and certainly some strategic planning, the most successful scientists will often be those who strike a good trade with their fellow lab mates. Players are able to freely trade elements, laboratory tools, and even favors – if there is truly honor among chemists!

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Compounded: Geiger Expansion, the first full expansion for the chemistry board game Compounded, gives experienced scientists even more to consider in the lab with the introduction of radioactive elements and compounds. As productivity in the lab increases, so does the chance for radioactivity levels to rise. Scientists have to keep a close eye on the geiger counter or else risk the lab becoming too radioactive in which to work.

The Geiger Expansion introduces a new, interactive paradigm to the base game of Compounded as players now sometimes have to work together to eliminate or reduce the threat of radioactivity. Of course, those players with a propensity for causing chaos have even more methods at their disposal, ensuring that each game is exciting and dynamic.

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Special gaming event: Spirit Island

In the most distant reaches of the world, magic still exists, embodied by spirits of the land, of the sky, and of every natural thing. As the great powers of Europe stretch their colonial empires further and further, they will inevitably lay claim to a place where spirits still hold power – and when they do, the land itself will fight back alongside the islanders who live there.

Spirit Island is a complex and thematic cooperative game about defending your island home from colonizing Invaders. Players are different spirits of the land, each with its own unique elemental powers. Every turn, players simultaneously choose which of their power cards to play, paying energy to do so. Using combinations of power cards that match a spirit’s elemental affinities can grant free bonus effects. Faster powers take effect immediately, before the Invaders spread and ravage, but other magics are slower, requiring forethought and planning to use effectively. In the Spirit phase, spirits gain energy, and choose how / whether to Grow: to reclaim used power cards, to seek for new power, or to spread presence into new areas of the island.

The Invaders expand across the island map in a semi-predictable fashion. Each turn they explore into some lands (portions of the island); the next turn, they build in those lands, forming settlements and cities. The turn after that, they ravage there, bringing blight to the land and attacking any native islanders present.

The islanders fight back against the Invaders when attacked, and lend the spirits some other aid, but may not always do so exactly as you’d hoped. Some Powers work through the islanders, helping them (eg) drive out the Invaders or clean the land of blight.

The game escalates as it progresses: spirits spread their presence to new parts of the island and seek out new and more potent powers, while the Invaders step up their colonization efforts. Each turn represents 1-3 years of alternate-history.

At game start, winning requires destroying every last settlement and city on the board – but as you frighten the Invaders more and more, victory becomes easier: they’ll run away even if some number of settlements or cities remain. Defeat comes if any spirit is destroyed, if the island is overrun by blight, or if the Invader deck is depleted before achieving victory.

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Store splash: Wanted: Rich or Dead

Howdy pard! Heel yourself with a proper six shooter and prepare for a real shootout.

In Wanted 3-5 players will take on a roles of an infamous Old West characters and shoot their way to the riches. Each turn the players are secretly choosing one of the five locations they’re heading to. After revealing the cards, the characters can use the special ability connected with that location – you can rob a Bank, buy something useful at a General Store etc. Unless of course two or more players choose the same spot – then it comes to a shootout with only one gunslinger winning at the end. The player who have the most money at the end, wins the game.

Wanted is a fast and fun experience with tons of interaction. Each character has his own set of 5 cards, which allow him to move and are also used during a shootout. Although there’s also a luck factor involved with a single dice used to determine the outcome of shooting abilities, each character plays differently and has his own strengths and weaknesses. You can try to get the best items and use them to your advantage, try to avoid other players and steal as much as you can or just go straight into a fight to stop the other players from using the locations’ abilities. The choice is yours but remember – this town is really small and you’ll eventually find yourself in the midst of a shootout.

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