Howdy Magic players! In the past few months, you may have seen your favorite content creators playing Commander on a fancy virtual platform: SpellTable
There's some technology behind SpellTable that's pretty neat: click on a card on anybody's screen and SpellTable's card recognition AI will scan the card and pull up the card for you on the right side of your screen. You can also search cards by name so you can check cards other players revealed or put into their graveyard—pretty handy!
The SpellTable website also hosts a matchmaking lobby that lets you hop into a game whenever you want, so you can test out your newly built decks with players from all over the world.
Many players have asked us for a guide on how to set up their physical SpellTable play space, and with the release of Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur's Gate and Double Masters 2022—two sets full of cards for your Commander decks and more—we figured this would be the perfect time to provide just that.
Setting Up Your Play Space
Setting up your play space for SpellTable is quite easy. You only need three items: A phone or webcam, a camera arm, and a laptop.
- Phone or webcam
- Camera arm (either type is fine)
All you need to do is secure your webcam/phone on the camera arm, clamp the arm on your desk, and voila! When you put it all together, it looks something like this:
That's all you need to do to prepare. SpellTable is a web app, so no need to download anything—just visit www.spelltable.com and log in with your Wizards account to start playing.
"But I don't have a camera arm," you say? No problem! Here's a blueprint of a quick DIY camera stand you can build with a simple cardboard box:
Basic Tips & Tricks
SpellTable is making use of cutting-edge machine learning technology, and we're constantly updating the card recognition AI algorithms. If SpellTable has trouble recognizing your cards at any point, don't worry; here are some tips that might help:
- Make sure your camera is looking straight down (directly at your play area) and isn't tilted at an angle.
- Adjust the position of your light source if there is glare on your sleeves.
- Use a solid, dark-colored playmat for high background contrast.
We've designed the SpellTable website interface to be as intuitive as possible, but in case you have trouble, feel free to check out these videos by Gavin Verhey on Good Morning Magic and the Professor of the Tolarian Community College that provide a more in-depth walkthrough of how to set up your account and use some of our basic features.
Now that you're familiar with the basics, we hope that you'll check out what SpellTable has to offer, and have a great time playing tabletop Magic online.
The SpellTable team is working hard on some exciting updates in the future, and while we can't share them just quite yet, please know that we're doing everything we can to improve the platform so that you can enjoy the game you love the most.
In the meantime, if you have any suggestions or ideas you'd like to share, please feel free to reach out to us on Twitter at @SpellTable—good games!