Everyone goes through this. At least I didn't waste money on Yu-Gi-Oh (out with it, you did, and now the attic is full of crappy Penguin Warriors and Book of Moons that are not only a fire hazard but will haunt you for the rest of your natural-born days as you struggle to give them for free at yard sales). Yeah, my brother and I got into Magic: the Gathering, with no cartoon graphics or stupid TV-show tie-in, and as much a rip-off of D&D as Yugi was of it.
There were three of us--we'd wrangled a nerd kid from Canada into the deal--and we hit the supermarket. I take credit for the whole ordeal because it was me who saw the cards in their pristine boxes in a stationary shop while shopping with Mom. Expert decks. I got Sliver Shivers, my bro got Elfish Assault or something to do with fricking elves, and the Canadian got Zombie Massacre or whatever (look it was a while ago). It took us a while to learn how to play. My brother and the nerd had known how to do it years ago in America but they'd forgotten, naturally.
It was very nerdy fun. Slivers, once you got the hang of them, were awesome monsters. One, Armored Sliver, gave all slivers more defense. One, Brood sliver, had little baby slivers depending on how many slivers were out. The Canadian said I smirked whenever I had something up my sleeve, and we made up special aliases for our warlord selves (this is really embarassing) and had badass quotes for when we wiped someone out. Three-way Magic was pretty interesting. Without meaning to advertise, here are some weird cards:
Which brings me to another reason they're cool; the artists who do each card. My favorites (my brother calls me a sissy for this) were mana.
I got another deck after I was tired of my old one--as a Christmas present, I think, from the States this time. I should have kept it. It was called Pulverize, and it had a lot of crazy tricks that suited me. No hulking monsters, just trickery with mana costs and Morph abilities. The last time I played with it, I beat my brother, who spent a lot more time improving his deck than me and fought his other friends with it. I left Pulverize in my Dad's apartment because I was thinking of getting money back from a hobby shop in Boston. I should have kept it, at least for the pictures. Man...