The Big Game: Personal Applications
I will now attempt to answer my own questions after doing my research and analysis. I'm 17 and I have been playing Magic for four and a half years. I have taken everything up to BC Calculus and will be taking Linear Algebra in the fall. I see math as a very important part of Magic. Knowing how to create an efficient deck and play it well requires a basic understanding of probability and statistics. Creating decks on your own time can utilize some major mathematical ideas, while in the actual playing area, logic and reasoning are tested very intensely.
I will base my strategy often upon what I anticipate my opponent doing. Sometimes I have to figure out the odds and base my strategy around them. While math is a big part of my game, I don't think that it makes me too much of a better player. It may give me an advantage against someone who does not know as much math, but it is definitely a part of the game itself. Mathematical reasoning skills are very useful, and I would not be able to play the game as well as I do without them. Making decisions at lightning speed is something required of any tournament-level Magic player. I need to be able to do that a lot. One small mistake has meant a match loss too many times. Playing flawlessly with reasonable speed is a key to success. Being able to acquire this skill requires countless hours of practice, sleep, and a proper diet. The mathematics are definitely in there, though.