I don’t know how, but Kathleen De Vere, internet comedian and member of Loading Ready Run found some time for a quick interview with me at MagicCon Las Vegas 2023. Between competing in Game Knights Live, doing meet and greets, playing in events, and being on panels, she seemed to be everywhere. Someone please schedule a nap for her at future conventions. :)
[Chris Wyman] For the readers, a little background, we just came from a panel you were on about translating Magic: The Gathering into D&D. You created a 5th edition D&D campaign called Bylaw and Order set in Ravnica. It was a very popular campaign for Loading Ready Run and helped bridge Magic and D&D. Everyone on that panel is a great resource. What other resources would you direct people at for translating Magic into D&D?
(Included is the full list of panelists after the interview text.)
[Kathleen De Vere] Some of the best resources that you can have if you’re looking to incorporate Magic into your game is, in addition to the official guidebooks, is a website called Scryfall. Scryfall basically has a visual record of every Magic card. If you get into the details of it, you can search the art for specific things, you can search for specific words in the flavor text. If you’re looking for some really specific things to help you flush out your campaigns Scryfall is a really invaluable resource. If you’re really wanting to dig into the meat and bones of a world and it’s perhaps an older world that hasn’t been given an official guidebook. A really great resource is the MtG Wiki. Which has tons of detail and summarizes articles and has links to the information on the internet that’s 20 years old and that is basically unavailable anywhere else at this point. It’s a really good resource if you’re looking for information about Magic worlds.
[CW] In addition to the work you do with Loading Ready Run, you’ve been on several creative text teams for Magic: The Gathering right? I believe I had to buy a new Meteor Golem because I liked your flavor text so much.
[KDV] I did flavor text for…the first one I did was for Unfinity and I had a great time doing it. I found it really fun and rewarding. I think it’s a wonderful challenge to get as much of a story across as possible in one sentence. I’m also a big goofball, so I like it when I can put jokes on cards. Sometimes they even print the jokes onto the cards, but I like suggesting jokes for cards. And then I did Brother’s War where I did not get to suggest very many jokes because it’s a pretty grim story. I did write the flavor text for… I don’t remember what the card is called. It’s the one where the goblins are dropping the bomb. The flavor text is something like, “And if this works Tawnos is gonna let us build one that’s twice as big,” or something like that. It’s huge right, it’s the size of both goblins and a little bit of goblin flavor and a very bleak world.
[CW] Do you have a favorite flavor text that you keep around that makes you chuckle every time you read it?
[KDV] I’m really proud anytime I can get a really good joke printed because I am a goofball and I love goofy things. I like things that make people smile. I’m really pleased with one of the first cards that I did for Unfinity and It was just a cosmic mini golf course. The holes were so far away and then there’s a bent and mangled putter floating in the foreground. It’s in space. The joke is, it’s mini golf, but it’s in space, so it’s huge. I submitted the flavor text, it was something like in all of the vast cosmos isn’t all golf miniature? Also the pun on Saw In Half is really good, “The audience always loves it but volunteers are divided.”
[CW] Saw In Half has great flavor text. Unfinity, as a whole, is just a joy to read and play with. You’re the Game Knights champion, what is that like? You played throughout the year several times? Do you have an actual title?
[KDV] I don’t know, winner of Game Knights live at MagicCon Vegas 2023? I got a crown and it was very exciting. I’m the grand champion I suppose, but it sounds very arrogant when I say it like that.
I went to Magic con Minneapolis and we played live, and it was a very close, super tight game. I love Ravnica and I drew Rakdos Charm, which didn’t win me the game. It was Rankle that won me the game technically, because it allowed me to beat Jimmy at Minneapolis. The Rakdos Charm I feel was really instrumental, it took Josh out of nowhere. It brought Jimmy’s life total down to something that was acceptable so that I could get him, it was a really clutch draw. Then here the last round was a very complicated board state that I was having trouble keeping track of. There were a lot of different moving parts because of my commander’s ability. The card that really did it for me was a card called Vicious Rumors. Which is a fairly obscure card from a Ravnica set. My favorite plane was represented even in my Game Knight’s victories.
[CW] Ravnica also happens to be my favorite plane as well. I happened to start playing when it was in Standard. The whole Game Knights production is so amazing with all the fanfare and the spectacle.
[KDV] It’s a really fun production, it’s really great.I don’t think it’s unreasonable to be like, all right I’ve got to be super entertaining. I’ve got to be funny. I also have to play perfectly or people are going to get mad.
[KDV] The fanfare and the spectacle is somewhat helpful though, because I feel like an ordinary Kathleen would feel a little bit anxious out there. When I saw the amazing costume, that the Game Knights had arranged because they take all of the production and everything they put into it so seriously. They do such a good job to make it entertaining and to really bring it up to the next level. They’re like here’s the costume you’ll be wearing. All right, I’m gonna go hard. I’m going to imagine Grand Warlord Radha because she’s a red green card and she looks like she would not be scared. She’s got this. So I can imagine her and go out there and that lasted for about most of my intro. Then I was regular Kathleen on stage but you know she gave me a good boost on the way out.
[CW] What are you most looking forward to in the next year of Magic? We’ve got all kinds of things going on.
[KDV] I’m the most excited for Murders at Karlov Manor because it’s my favorite plane. I really love Ravnica. I’m very excited to see how it sort of manifests. It seems like a slightly different take on Ravnica. We’ve never had a murder mystery set on Ravnica. I’m just excited to spend more time in that place and to see what is going on there. Let’s check in. They just had a huge invasion on top of another huge invasion. They had the Dread Horde come in earlier. Niv-Mizzet is there. What’s going on? I love Ravnica. It got kind of messed up in the invasion, some bad things happened. I’m really excited to check back in and see what’s happening there and how the set is.
[CW] Lastly, where can people find you? What are you most excited to share with everyone? Where can they find your content?
[KDV] My goodness, if you are interested in any of the work I have done, I would love it if you could go to YouTube and type Loading Ready Run into that search bar. We have a whole bunch of different channels. We have a channel just for our Magic: The Gathering content, called LRRMTG. Then we have an LRR Tabletop channel which we’re going to be putting up new content. If you want to find and watch Bylaw and Order for yourself, I warn you, I think I could do a better job now if i did again. Hindsight’s 2020, you can just Google “Bylaw and Order” and the first episode is probably going to come up on a YouTube search for you. If you’re interested in watching me play games live, you can go to Twitch and type in Loading Ready Run and you can find our official Twitch channel. If you are like me and you refuse to give up on Twitter, no matter what. You can find me on Twitter @Kathleen_LRR, and you can also find me on Mastodon and Blue Sky with the same handles.
The panelists of MtG Meets D&D: Adding Magic To Your Campaign included:
Michelle Rapp, Kathleen De Vere, Chris Mooney, Amelia Wales, Shivam Bhatt
Chris began tabletop gaming in college and quickly fell into the addictive world of cardboard. Beginning with D&D and Catan he became an enthusiast of all things gaming; analog or digital. Chris, now a recovering MtG player, loves connecting with people via gaming through RPGs, board games, and video games. A particular favorite is testing friendships through social deduction games.