Category Archives: MTG

What is Tempo?

     Written by Myles Miller

Tempo is defined as “the rate or speed of an activity”, and you’ll usually find this term applied to music and how fast/slow it’s played. Tempo in the context of Magic refers to the advantage created by putting yourself ahead in a game, while setting your opponent back a step or two. The most effective tempo plays will add to your board while taking something away from your opponent: one of their creatures, a removal spell from their hand, or a chunk of their life total. Whether you’re adding a creature to your board, destroying one of your opponent’s threats, or creating a situation in which your opponent has to react to your plays instead of making their own, a game of Magic is all about the give and take of tempo. In this article, I will go through each color and discuss how each creates tempo in a different way. A blue deck plays very differently than a green deck, and the ways those colors generate tempo differ as well. Normally I’d start with White and move around the color pie, but I’d like to start with the color that most exemplifies tempo; that is infamous for finding ways to stall the opponent and wear them down over time:

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Minds Aglow – Approaching Commander

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Minds Aglow  | Art by Yeong-Hao Han | © Wizards of the Coast

The answer to the question “Why do I play EDH?” is the most important thing you can ask yourself when approaching the format. Being open with others about what you find engaging and fun about Commander will lead to the highest amount of games where both you and your opponents enjoy themselves; in a game that usually has four or more players in it, not everyone can win, but everyone can certainly end the game on a high note.

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