Magic: The Gathering is, in my opinion, the single best card game ever created. In many ways, they are the game that popularized collectable card games (or CCGs), and they are still running the show today. Sadly, I have not been able to play much Magic in the past 6 months, and writing this article is reminding me of how much fun that game is. I still have a solid collection of thousands of cards, and I think it might be time to pull them out and get back to playing.
Anyway, the point of this article is not for me to reminisce about the days of playing Magic, it is to tell you about the official Wizards of the Coast application called Magic: The Gathering Toolbox. It is the one stop shop for all things Magic on your iPhone. It takes all the features that some of the Magic apps out there have and combines them. Moreover, because it is the official app, you know all the information contained is valid and accurate.
Any Magic app needs a life counter. When things get intense and you are planning three and four turns ahead, remembering your life can be impossible. Many players use dice to remember their life, but this is 2012, and we have the technology to make life a hell of a lot easier. The life counter in this app is as feature packed as any one I have seen. You can tap settings to set your counter for a standard two player game, a tournament game (just make sure having your phone out is okay with the judges and your opponent) and for commander.
You can also tap on the sword beside each player’s name to add additional features. You can change the background to various colors and even some beautiful card art. You can also roll a d6, flip a coin, roll a d20 and even tap “Who’s First” to have the app tell you who gets to play first.
You can also tap “players” to change the information of the people in the game. Lastly, you can tap “Trackers” to add other counters such as Poison, Deck Size, Times Commander Cast, Commander Damage and storm count. This is the one and only life counter you will need while playing Magic: The Gathering.
Another awesome feature of this app is the deck builder. You start by choosing the format for the deck. For my example, I choose Legacy. From the deck builder screen you search for the cards you would like to have in your deck, and then click if you want to add them to your main deck, or sideboard.
Once you have completed your deck, you can use the tools in the app to draw a sample hand and analyze the deck. It is a great way to get a feel for how your deck will play. After all the fine tuning and tweaking, you can share your new deck on Facebook or via email.
Obviously, Wizards of the Coast has access to the entire database of Magic: The Gathering cards, so it makes sense that they would include a card search in their app. The search is extensive, allowing you to simply type in a cards name, or browse based on all kinds of parameters. You can limit by color, rules, expansion, type, subtype and so many more. It allows you to find the cards you know, and learn about cards that you may not have heard of before.
The app also features a quick way to view the latest news from the official Magic: The Gathering blog. It is a cool way to keep up with the latest happenings in the Magic world. You can also use the search function at the top of the blog to find articles about a specific topic. The official blog is great for news, but they also feature some amazing strategy posts that will help new players step up their game.
They also have an events feature that allows hardcore magic players to keep up with the important things happening in the world of Magic. If you are looking to make your way into the high-level magic scene, you can use this feature to find out what is going on.
An added bonus is the store locator. It takes you out of the app and links you to the store locator section of the official Magic: The Gathering website. If you are looking for a place to attend a prerelease or a Friday Night Magic, this is the feature you need to check out.
This app is necessary for Magic: The Gathering players. It has everything a Magic player could want. Best of all, it is free! If you always wanted to have Magic at your fingertips, go download this application. I promise, you will not regret it.
I would love to hear how you enjoy this application or some great stories from fellow Magic players. Share in the comments!