I am a geek, I´ve always been a geek and this is just one example of that. If you haven´t heard about Magic: The Gathering it is going to be very hard to explain it to you in just one post but I´ll try.
Magic is a trading card game where you use lands, spells, creatures and enchantments to defeat your oponnent. It is a strategic game where your own experience will help you to create scenarios where you are favored. Think of it as Dungeons and Dragons, but with cards. It is as if you are a magician casting spells and summoning creatures to help you beat your enemy.
For you, Magic players, this explanation might be very plain and it that it doesn´t do justice to the whole Magic Universe but, it would take more than one post to explain all the details.
Why do you fell passion about your hobby?
As I said. I am a geek and this game appeals to all my geekness. I love how the cards smell, I enjoy reading the lore - there are novels about this Game - and the flavor text in the cards, the official tournaments are awesome, the community that gathers and play every friday night is amazing, that feeling you get when you open a booster pack and start browsing the cards until you reach the last one - which is usually the rare one -, being able to collect the whole expansion... Magic the Gathering is a universe and I love feeling part of it.
How did you picked this hobby? Or better yet, how did this hobby picked you?
My dad used to have a Comic book store where he also used to seel MTG cards so it was a matter of time until in 1999 I saw them in the store, opened a booster pack and then learned to play. I used to read the InQuest Magazine which was like the bible for Role playing gamers and from there I became a huge fan.
I became so obsessed that I started to show my school friends how to play and I became their local dealer - making a small profit for myself and paying for my own cards and decks from it - and at some point I even organized school tournaments. This was when I was 12 years old.
How long have you been doing it...? Are you learning more and more every day?
I started in 1998 and I went on until 2005, then I returned in 2009 until 2013. After that I haven´t picked it up yet, but I know I´m going to, I will always go back to my first true love. I stopped learning since I stopped playing but I am sure that when I pick it up again, I will return to be the avid clever player I was before my temporary retirement.
What is is that you love about this hobby?
I love playing Magic the gathering because it allows me to have adventures even if I am 10 minutes away from my house. It´s similar as reading a fantasy book or exploring a forest or a mangrove, it makes me feel like I am having my own Bilbo adventure, every time I play.
Playing MTG is not easy, it is very challenging especially if you like competing with the best. There are Pro Tours, Grand Prix - I´m not sure if those are still celebrated - Nationals, and also a World Cup and I used to play at that level where the tournaments have at least 200 players.
Is it something you share with someone else or is this hobby YOUR thing and you do it by yourself?
Playing MTG is my thing. I used to have problems with the girls I dated because I prefered attending the Friday Night Magic than to go to the movies or having dinner with them. Back in middle school I had friends who played it but after a while everyone else grew out of it, but not me, so I just made it my thing and used to attend tournaments and gatherings by myself and have the best time.
If I have to be honest, I wouldn´t want to share this hobby, not with a friend or my girl, this is mine and I enjoy doing it by myself.
Is your hobby a priority? Does practicing takes away time with your family or partner? Do you have it high on your priority list or is it not that important compared to family and friends?
It used to be a priority but not anymore, the sad part is that I still want to play it but to be good at it, it requires a lot of hours spent weekly and, since I have been traveling it is impossible for me to have the time for it.
Is your hobby expensive? Do you spend a lot of money when you practice it? What sacrifices you make to be able to practice your hobby?
As any serious hobby, it takes money to play at the highest level. It is not a pay to win hobby because if you are clever and good enough at it, you can beat a top tier deck with a mid tier deck, it´s all about how you use the cards. But to be honest, to play with the best and be able to win you have to have the best cards which are only obtained by buying booster packs or getting the cards directly from a local dealer. The tournaments are expensive - but also the prizes are huge - and overall, you have to spend at least some good 100 dollars a month (and that doesn´t even take you far, just allows you to be competitive).
Are you lucky enought that, is your hobby part of your job?
I used to dream about traveling the world and win tournaments to keep traveling - this was when I was 15 years old - because the big tournament prizes were huge back then, I´m not sure how they are right now.
If you would have to explain your hobby to an alien, how would you do it?
Imagine you are a wizard and have the ability to cast spells, enchantments and summon creatures and artifacts that will help you will your enemies.