Six takes on multiplayer from those other folks in Ferrett's play group.

The Guys in "Team"

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One of the unique challenges about writing for is that every other week, I have no clue what I'm writing about until My Dark Masters tell me. loves its theme weeks, oh yes it does—and so I'll often find myself sitting in a dark room, staring at a blank Word document, waiting for the email to arrive to tell me what my next article will be.

There's a small "ding!" as my inbox gets another mail. It's from Scott Johns or Kelly Digges, my editors.

"This week is Defenestration Week," they say. "We need 3,000 words on throwing people out of windows by three o'clock. Go!"

And so I hunch over the keyboard, desperately trying to think of some clever spin on the theme that nobody's tried before.

This week, however, was different. Kelly sent the email to me with a textual pump of the fist, saying, "This is right up your alley." And I looked at my assignment:

Teamwork Week

A good idea, but unfortunately, it was wrong. We don't play teams, though you'd think it'd be a natural for me to write about Two-Headed Giant or Emperor, and thus I had nothing worthwhile to say. I had no news to offer on the topic.

Then I felt a little depressed. After all, I play with a group of great guys. One of the things that always bugs me about playing and then writing is that they do all of the cool stuff, and then I get the glory by publishing it. Sometimes, I even take a boneheaded play they made and broadcast it to umpteen thousand readers.

Is that really teamwork? Where is the "I" in team when I'm telling the whole world what terrible players they are? And given that I couldn't be playing all of these fabulous games to write about without their help, don't they deserve some credit?

Then I thought, maybe I can get them some. So I wrote an email to the gang:

Hey, fellas:

"Teamwork Week" is slated for next week, and I'd like to have a guest column consisting of little mini-writings by... you.

After all, it's only fair. I dissect your plays. Why shouldn't you get to dissect mine before the same audience?

The question is, would each of you (or enough of you!) be willing to write up, say, 500 to 1,000 words on multiplayer strategy that I could compile?

Keep in mind that my column is what I think is important about multiplayer Magic, and always has been. So I'd much rather get your take on an aspect of multiplayer that you think I've either not written about enough or gotten just plain wrong. Choose what you'd like to write about, and hopefully you'll surprise me (and the readers) by either disagreeing with me or delving into an aspect that I hadn't thought of as significant (but you do), or fleshing out some part of multiplayer that I've touched upon too lightly for your liking. That's what would be cool.

And my guys? They're so friggin' awesome. They came through.

Here's what they had to say.

How to Lose Like a Pro
By Todd Smith

The Spike Recovery Program
By Ben Stark

Managing Impressions
By Josh Bell

Chaos is not a Duel
By Ian Griffith

Think like a Snake
By Peter Risser

Confessions of a Casual Player
By Robert Morris

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