At that point Magic was an endless sea of rare and odd cards. There was no web with easy access to spoilers and the Encyclopedia books were yet to be printed. We had played for a couple of months and it felt like any card could exist. Take an extra turn for a mana or two? That could well be a thing. A 10/10 creature? Seems like a schoolyard urban legend, but sure, it could be possible.
We approached the game with odd house rules and a sense of discovery. At first, Dark Ritual was a interpreted as a permanent that tapped for three mana. No effects were "until end of turn". An 'X' in a mana cost was thought to represent the constant 10 (the Roman numeral) rather than a variable. Touch and go. As we had done in board games before, we created our own game pieces in our grandparents' house.
|My early 1995 arts and craft.|
|Fear of Life, by Richard Garfield.|
|Benalish Hero with "Maze of Ith"-ability|
|Like the 7/7 Serra Angel for 1WW|
|Once more, with feeling.|
So what about the real 93/94 legal cards, altered by Garfield? Personally, I think that they could be played as altered in old school games as long as both players agree to it beforehand. I wouldn't actively encourage them in tournaments, but I sure wont hinder players to walk down that lane of nostalgia if they both want to. They were a big part of school yard legends in the 90s, and the few players who had their hands on them usually played them as written. If one or more of players in the match don't want to play the cards as altered, they should be played according to Oracle errata (i.e. as normal versions). In particular, some cards are much more fair than others to play. The Serra Angel is pretty broken, but e.g. this Rabid Wombat looks sweet. By no means broken, but probably playable in Enchantress:
|The Yavimaya Enchantress of 1994.|
|A Workshop that taps for 3 without restriction on how to use the mana|
|I'm Rubber, You're Glue?|
Hm, more I think about it, the more sure I get that I'll eventually rip the card apart in an inebriated game of 93/94. It's the only Garfield alter I own, but I guess it would be something of a tribute to 1995 Mg to use it properly at some point. And ripping up Chaos Orbs is after all a big part of the lore of mid 90s Magic. Benalish Dead would be proud.
In other news around the world, a bunch of rag-tag Britons gathered to swing old cardboard in a pub in London earlier this month. You can check out some sweet decks and pictures from the event here. The large Ovinospring tournament in Milan took place last weekend, this time gathering over 50 players. And in a little over a month, I'm planning to travel to Frankfurt to see what the Germans have to offer in terms tech and beer, and battle Marc Lanigra and friends on their own turf. Hope to see some of you there!