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CardName: Magic Arena Cost: Type: Game Pow/Tgh: / Rules Text: Magic Arena is WotC's latest online interface to emulate the paper game. Flavour Text: Set/Rarity: Conversation Common

Magic Arena
Magic Arena is WotC's latest online interface to emulate the paper game.
Updated on 06 Nov 2021 by amuseum

History: [-]

2018-04-07 00:49:57: amuseum created and commented on the card Magic Arena

Magic Arena is WotC's latest online interface to emulate the paper game.

That it is. I don't use it, and anyways I am on Linux, not Windows. I would prefer FOSS (free-software/open-source) programs, although some don't implement text-changing effects. I had idea of a RDF-based format to define the effects of the cards; it would then compile them into its internal format, and be able to work it. For example, "counter target spell" becomes [:counter [:target :spell]], and "this object deals 3 damage to any target" becomes [:damage 3; :to [:target :damageable]]. The game engine and the UI should be separate, in order that you can easily replace them. If it can be approved, then its source code (especially if written using literate programming) can then be the "true rules of the game", making the rules less confusing, and allowing you to figure out any situation (for existing cards and custom cards) by putting it into the computer. Write on my NNTP if you have more ideas about this.

on 12 Jul 2021 by Visitor:

Have you tried Forge? Am confident it is the best way to play Magic (on electronic device).

Card physical dimensions necessitates terse rules text. Am not convinced computer language can be more terse than natural human language. Human language may consists of unwritten implications and suppositions. Otoh every detail must be spelled out in order for computers to calculate accurately, according to intended purpose. Humans can (usually) understand despite (some) omissions.

Is it? A brief glance makes me wonder if it's any better than XMage.

As a custom card designer, you can easily create new cards and sets and formats in Forge.

Whereas XMage data (cards, sets) are hardcoded in java files. Thus designers would need IDE, compiler, and knowledge of Java and the engine code in order to make playable cards.

Whereas Forge data (cards, sets, decks, etc.) are external text files, that can be added to the game without any programming experience or compiling software. The syntax are human-readable and writable.

It's like what @zzo38 said about separating the data and the engine. Forge lets you add new cards and sets without touching the engine. Obviously only works with existing mechanics and keywords that the engine understands. But you can add new mechanics by modifying the engine. (Difficulty depends on the mechanics' complexity.)

I've written a bunch of new mechanics, keywords, cards, sets, and played them on Forge. I even overhauled the UI for better viewing on 4k monitors. The most difficult part is coding the AI to understand how to play new mechanics.

Forge has a great quest mode (in the same spirit as the first MTG video game by MicroProse, set in Shandalar.) You start with just a few packs of cards, make a deck from those cards, then battle AI to win credits to buy more cards and packs to upgrade your collection and decks.

One thing XMage is probably better at is playing online against other humans.

I am not trying to make the computer code to be necessarily more terse than the English printed text. Rather, together with the rules of the game, the short computer code can be automatically parsed and combined with the rest of the program. For example, with the example I gave, :counter, :target, and :spell would be already defined (and must be FOSS, so that you can easily read the definition, understand the rules of the game precisely, and fix it if it is wrong or if you are making a variant game), so the spell text can just be coded as [:counter [:target :spell]]. (In the case of the damaging effect, the :from part is implied; some kinds of effects would need to specify it explicitly, but in this case the default (:from :this) would be implied automatically since it is not specified explicitly.) Of course, more complicated scenarios will need to use more complicated code, but sometimes simple codes can be used for the card texts even though the codes for the rules (which implement these simpler codes) are much more complicated.

Ah, amuseum: I missed the part where adding custom cards to Forge is (relatively) easy.

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