Flooping the Pig

tumblr_mcybn1tlfq1rjyyldo2_500As previously reported, D&D Next has turned out to be a hit with my son, Daniel. Sadly, we haven’t gotten to play again since the second game. I had promised him a game Saturday, but we were out of the house all evening and never got to play. It’s still in the cards for this weekend — I think I might use the orc caves this time and build it around the dwarven mine foreman’s daughter being kidnapped … something with a little more NPC interaction.

In the meantime, I pounced on an opportunity yesterday to continue Daniel’s introduction to tabletop games. This time, I have Adventure Time to thank.

First: if you don’t watch Adventure Time, you should. Second: Monday night there was a new episode, “Card Wars.” Daniel loves the crap out of Adventure Time, and he thought this episode was particularly funny (so did I). In it, Finn and Jake play a Magic: The Gathering style card game where they play lands, summon creatures, and do battle. One funny running gag has to do with Finn “flooping the pig” — “flooping” is the word they use for tapping [remember, WotC has “tapping” trademarked] — and the pig causing all sorts of problems for Jake. “I floop the pig” just made us both laugh out loud.

Afterwards, Daniel asked me if there was a Card Wars game “for real.”

“No,” I answered, “But it looks like it was based on a game that actually exists.”

His eyes went wide. “Do you have it? I want to play it!”

I sold off my Magic cards in 2005. “I don’t have it anymore,” I said, hating to disappoint him.

“Can you buy it again? I want to play it!”

So, yeah, you can guess what I did Tuesday: I looked into Magic: The Gathering. I hadn’t played a single game since selling off my decks, but from what I saw on the website it hadn’t really changed all that much. Even more interesting to me was that last weekend had been the launch weekend for Magic 2013 edition. My “Oh, shiny!” reflex for new releases kicked in, and after work I swung by the local Target to pick up the “Intro Set” Red and Green decks (yes, Target sells Magic, and yes, they had the new releases in; and no, I didn’t go to my FLGS because they’re nowhere near my workplace).

Luckily, Daniel’s interest was still fresh, and we sat down Tuesday night to play our first game of Magic. I stripped the decks down to 45 cards, beasts and lands only, which was actually easy to do as both decks had 15 non-beast, non-land cards. He played Red (his favorite color, generally) and I played Green (which used to be my go-to color when I played). In hindsight, Green really favors an all-beast deck much better than Red does, but despite the handicap Daniel did okay. I had to talk him through a lot of strategy and help him understand all the powers, but he and I traded blows a few times before I got some of the big Green beasties on the table and trampled him.

The best part of the game was when Daniel actually got to floop a pig. The Red deck had a small secondary bit of Green in its build, and a couple of the Green creatures were Flinthoof Boars. Yes, that’s right, boars. As in pigs. Daniel got to “floop the pig” in his first game of Magic.

It was so epic I had to take a picture.

They’re pretty nasty, too; he got two of them out and killed things before I finally got them out of the game. From here on out, “flooping the pig” will become part of our permanent shared Magic vocabulary. Heck, he spent half the evening saying “flooping” instead of “tapping” generally. I can’t wait to take him to a game day or something. Thanks, Adventure Time.

After our game, we opened up the booster packs that come with the Intro Decks. And, I kid you not, he got not only a foil Serra Avenger, but also the Green Planeswalker card (ultra-rare, for those of you not into the game). Lucky kid.

So now that’s two great tabletop games that I’ve introduced him to. It’s also  two games that I am playing regularly again thanks to Daniel, two games I used to love but also two games I had lost track of in recent years. So I guess we’re helping each other out here. Either way, we’re having a blast.

This weekend may contain both D&D Next AND Magic: The Gathering. It should be a whole lot of fun.



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