How to Play Webcam MtG

How to Play Webcam MtG
Introduction
      Thanks to servers like cEDH Nexus, PlayEDH, PlayModern, etc there is a growing scene for people to play MtG online. Depending on the size of the server you can get games at practically any time of day without having to drive to an LGS. From the comfort of your home (even in your underwear) you can jam to your heart’s content, day or night. There are a plethora of issues and barriers involved in becoming part of this community. Fortunately for the most part people are extremely welcoming and helpful. Between that and this document you are only a small investment and a little effort away from jamming online!
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Checklist
◻ Deck + Proxies
◻ Dice + Tokens + Mat
◻ Camera + Stand
◻ Light
◻ Mic + Headphones
◻ Software 
◻ Etiquette + Mindset
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Deck + Proxies
      First thing’s first, you gotta get yourself a deck. When playing via webcam most people are accepting of proxies and they are even encouraged in competitive circles. Serious competitive players prefer a high degree of competition to test their mettle and having players hamstrung due to budget is often a feelsbad for everyone at the table. 
      If you are on a budget then get paper printed proxies. Generally people will print the cards out at their local library, at work, or on their home printer via pdfs created on MtGPress. These are the cheapest option and allows you to be super flexible with changing your builds and creating new decks on the fly. 
      If you are patient and willing to spend a little bit then I recommend MakePlayingCards and the like. I have a guide to ordering cards from them

How to Make Proxies via MPC


 
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Dice + Tokens + Mat
      Getting dice will be a no-brainer for most magic players but it is even more critical via webcam because you can’t mooch off of the other people in your pod. Go get yourself some d6 and d10 from Amazon, they are cheap.
      Tokens are a bit more optional but they make things more legible and smooth. This is one case where a piece of paper written on is better than nothing. The better option is to add the important ones for the meta and for your decks when you are ordering/creating your proxies. A list of common cEDH tokens that others will give you can be found here. OR do the big brain play of getting dry erase cards for ease plus potential bonus lulz.
      A lot of people will have mats already but if you want to go the extra mile in improving legibility get yourself a solid black mat.
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Camera + Stand
      The camera might be the only thing you are missing to get started. There are a few good options but the most common is the Logitech c920. I’ve seen it on sale for as low as $50 but I’m sure you could get it even cheaper on Black Friday/Cyber Monday if you are willing to shop around. The common cheaper option is the Logitech c270 though the legibility is not quite as high. If you have sketchy internet then your connection will often be the bottleneck so the c270 is likely sufficient in that case.
      If you aren’t or don’t want to be clever in how you rig your cam then just get yourself a webcam stand. Personally I would recommend this one (though you likely need to put a book or two under it depending on how you prefer to angle your play area).
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Light
      A lot of people will skimp out with lighting and struggle to figure out why they have a horrid glare all the time. The key is diffusion and indirect light! If you have an existing lighting setup that is ALMOST there then you can try just adding some diffusion. You can jerry rig something or you can just buy a cheaper diffuser on amazon. Or go the extra mile and buy a light that has good diffusion like this one from Ikea or a paper lantern style one from amazon (careful as some of those results are shades only).
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Mic + Headphones
      If you really want to be cheap you can join discord on your phone and use it that way. But if you want to keep things clear and game quality high then splurge on whatever you are missing to complete a quality mic + headphones combo. Using your laptop’s built-in mic is not recommended.
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Software
      There are a few pieces of software you will want to get. The prevailing method for playing at the moment is Gotomeeting. There are free options like whereby but often times you will be able to get access to someone’s Gotomeeting room and this document will focus on using that as it creates for a better play experience. If you do end up using someone’s Gotomeeting keep in mind that there is a monthly fee involved and if you end up using it regularly it is good etiquette to contribute (typically done through Patreon).
      For tracking life totals some people use dice but this can be rather difficult to read. Our two recommended apps for tracking life totals are Gauntlet for iOS users and Carbon for anyone. Carbon is a bit cleaner and simpler while Gauntlet allows for stat tracking on your decks and some other cool features you can explore for yourself.
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Etiquette + Mindset
      The only part you can’t buy, having good etiquette and mindset while playing online is likely the most difficult part of creating an ideal play experience for the whole pod. In lieu of doing a long write up on this subject for now I will link to The Mana Web where you can read their spiel on it.
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