If you’re anywhere in the Magic community, you’ve probably seen the New Phyrexia (or NPH) ‘Godbook': the book with every card in the set.
When it first came to light, there were various cries of ‘phony’ and ‘fake’ throughout the forum world, but the completeness of it, with art and card numbers included it convinced most after a short time, even before the full PDF was available. The initial screen shots of the PDF were apparently leaked over IRC by a 19-year-old French player named David Gauthier, aka B-boy. Gauthier was bragging on the public chat room that he had the spoiler list, and the cry of ‘Pics or it’s a lie’ came swiftly. After he touted his status as a pro and lying about how he got the list, another IRCer got him into an MSN chat where screen shots of the God Book were transferred as proof.
It was plastered all over the internet within five hours.
Caleb Durward of Channel Fireball watched the initial IRC chat happen, and from images of the MSN chat he gleaned Gauthier’s email address to send him the following interview questions:
I’m David Gauthier, Bboycott on MTGO, and a French nineteen year old random player!
How long have you played Magic?
I discovered MTG three years ago (some days after the Future Sight prerelease) and I started to play more seriously after PT Hollywood two years ago with Rock Elf.
How long did you have the godbook before it got spread around? Who did you get the book from, and has the leak damaged your relationship?
I had the godbook one or two days before the leak. I received it from Martial Moreau who received it from Guillaume Wafo-Tapa. Our relationships aren’t damaged yet. I explained what I did to him, but his forgiveness will depend on the sanction we’ll get I guess…
Why did you have the book?
I received it because I’m Martial’s friend, he trusted me, and in the Care Bears’ World, friends and sharing are all they have! He received it from Gullaume Wafo-Tapa probably for the same reasons and Guillaume received it because he’s writer.
Are you worried about any possible repercussions from Wizards?
And yes, since I discovered the gravity of this situation, I’m worried about any repercussions from Wizards (especially for Martial, and Guillaume who needs MTG in his life!)”
As for the original leak, Guillame Matignon of Lotus Noir (a prominent French magazine) gave the following statement to Wizards of the Coast on April 28th:
“For the last few years, I have been writing articles for a French paper magazine. Thus I’ve been writing reviews for the newest Magic sets in there. Writers are provided with a ‘Godbook’ for reference on the new sets, I received the New Phyrexia Godbook, and decided to share it with my friend Guillaume Wafo-Tapa. I wanted his thoughts on this excellent set, to help me to write my article. However, he shouldn’t have had access to that document. Not at all. The ‘Godbook’ has been leaked on the internet. I don’t know exactly how. But it all comes from my mistake. I am responsible for that leak.
“Magic the Gathering is an immense part of my life. More than the game itself, the community of players, judges, organizers and Wotc employees is fantastic. And by my stupid actions, the game and the community has been hurt. If there is a single player quitting the game due to that leak, a single booster unsold, that will be my fault. My own fault. For someone who loves the game as much as I do, that’s horrible. I feel destroyed. I don’t have the words to express how much I feel sorry.”
And there is the chain of events. Guillame Matignon gave the list to Guillame Wafo-Tapa to get insights into the new set, Wafo-Tapa gave it to Martial Moreau who passed it to Gauthier who inadvertently passed it on to the internet because of his epeen. The consequence of the choices was passed down in the form of DCI bans, Matignon for three years, whereas Wafo-Tapa, Moreau, and Gauthier have been suspended from the DCI until October 2012.
© 2011, Tim Boothby. All rights reserved.