Stupid Theros Pre-Release

  • #1
    Hero Cards are not for use at the Prerelease;


    Ruined before it even started.

    Instead we get an over-arching, block long quest thing.

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  • #2
    That's for the best, in my opinion. Many of us want to have a regular Magic playing experience, just with new cards, of course - and that is enough. Going too deep on the gimmick thing might end up scaring people like me away completely. Better to have it an optional thing that those who enjoy that sort of thing can participate in if they want to.
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  • #3
    Quote from Sene
    That's for the best, in my opinion. Many of us want to have a regular Magic playing experience, just with new cards, of course - and that is enough. Going too deep on the gimmick thing might end up scaring people like me away completely. Better to have it an optional thing that those who enjoy that sort of thing can participate in if they want to.

    I wish they'd just stop with the gimmicks altogether. It's the one time all year I bother playing sealed and the only time they don't do gimmicks are core sets.


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  • #4
    warrior, philosopher and avenger are the good ones.

    +1/+1 verse haste, deathtouch or tapping down a guy? lulz weak. same goes for preventing 1 damage.

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  • #5
    I'm fine with gimmicks, I just don't want gimmicks that affect the contents of your card pool. (Regardless of whether or not you get to make that choice yourself.)

    The Dark Ascension one was probably the cleanest execution here.


    Regardless of whatever these are for, I wonder how absurd the effects will be by the end.



    Well apparently you get a special booster for a specific color. Meh. At least unlike RTR, it will at least only be a guide rather than locking you into a specific combination or ditching 1/6 of your pool.

    Regardless, I have the distinct impression that one of the colors will be easier to maximize than the others for the prerelease sealed.


    Wait, you have to have to have a Standard deck to fight the Hydra? Ugh. Frown
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  • #6
    Quote from Sene
    That's for the best, in my opinion. Many of us want to have a regular Magic playing experience, just with new cards, of course - and that is enough. Going too deep on the gimmick thing might end up scaring people like me away completely. Better to have it an optional thing that those who enjoy that sort of thing can participate in if they want to.


    You're still not getting a regular Magic playing experience though:

    At the Prerelease, you'll get a Prerelease pack! It contains a special seed booster with lots of cards in the color you choose. As with the Return to Ravnica and Gatecrash Prereleases, you'll get a *playable* Prerelease promo in this seed booster.


    So let's just hope they color-balance things so we don't see a repeat of the Boroscrash prerelease.

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  • #7
    Ugh...what was so terrible about 6 randomly generated booster packs? I feel like they're dumbing down the game for prereleases more and more each year -- it's strictly for casuals and new players, if you want a traditional competitive Limited experience, get it somewhere else.

    The Ravnica guild gimmick I could almost justify -- it had a flavor component at least. Flavor's not my #1 thing but I know it is for some players. This is just "Here's a pack of your favorite color to make deck building easier." Rolleyes
  • #8
    I enjoy ONLY regular prereleases, to gimmicks i say NAY.
  • #9
    Quote from fnord
    You're still not getting a regular Magic playing experience though

    Yeah, I realize that it's not exactly like regular sealed, but it's not so bad as long as it's still just sealed Magic, and they don't force all the other stuff on you (Helvault, quests, achievements, Maze running or whatever - that sort of stuff). Don't get me wrong, I definitely prefer regular sealed and all, but adding some guild packs or whatnot isn't all that horrible.

    After all, prereleases aren't primarily for us old junkies anyway. And let's face it, we're probably such addicts that we'll end up going regardless Wink
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  • #10
    I'm more concerned that having a playable prerelease promo means that each color may have its own promo...which means having to go to 5 of these events to collect them all. :/

    It should mean, however, that prerelease 2HG will once again feature some really focused decks with 2 prerelease packs' worth of cards.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that it means you'll have at least one playable bomb in your pool, which does help to lessen the impact of getting unplayable rares. It also means you should get a decent number of playables in the color you choose. These factors combine to make a more newbie-friendly experience, since you aren't stuck with these great cards that you can't even play because your pool is skewed towards other colors. And more newbies means the "old junkies" can stay competitive with otherwise horrible pools. I mean, it's a reduction in variance, which should mean better results for better players, right?
  • #11
    I for one am glad if Hero cards aren't being used at the prerelease, I don't think I'd find that enjoyable. Guild packs with usable promos were one thing but if the heroes were usable that would just be on a whole different level of silliness IMO.

    Quote from Phyrre56
    Ugh...what was so terrible about 6 randomly generated booster packs? I feel like they're dumbing down the game for prereleases more and more each year -- it's strictly for casuals and new players, if you want a traditional competitive Limited experience, get it somewhere else.


    Well, prerelease has always been more geared towards newer players anyways to be fair. The fact that they're going with more and more gimmicks just shows that the ones they've done in the past have been well received by these players.
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  • #12
    Blecch. I'm not interested in a Breaking Bad video game, wouldn't eat Final Fantasy Pasta, and am not looking forward to Choose Your Own Adventure MTG. There's already Planechase, EDH, Prismatic and a dozen other formats you can play if you're bored of regular Magic... I wish they'd just put the energy into ensuring the set is balanced and fun.
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  • #13
    am i really the first one posting here who really, really enjoys these gimmicks?

    the only reason i didn't like the Gatecrash prerelease is because they made the boros packs wa~~~~y too good [making aggressive decks /very/ possible, which destroys everyone else, and giving the guild that was already the best a playable rare in every guildpack] and dimir packs wa~~~~y too bad [unplayable rares, not the cards to actually make dimir decks viable, etc].

    but the idea itself? and the feeling of trying to complete the maze in DMZ packs? and having the sticker and feeling affiliated with a guild? and giving high fives to fellow members?

    yeah, that's totally fun. i don't go to prereleases to win [ie 'cause i suck], but i go to have fun. these gimmicks totally play into the experience i'm hoping for. i'm surprised i'm the first person to speak up on this thread -- am i really in the minority?
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  • #14
    Quote from silph
    am i really the first one posting here who really, really enjoys these gimmicks?

    the only reason i didn't like the Gatecrash prerelease is because they made the boros packs wa~~~~y too good [making aggressive decks /very/ possible, which destroys everyone else, and giving the guild that was already the best a playable rare in every guildpack] and dimir packs wa~~~~y too bad [unplayable rares, not the cards to actually make dimir decks viable, etc].


    You've identified the problem here: the execution, not the idea of gimmicks. What makes you think the Theros packs will be any more balanced?


    but the idea itself? and the feeling of trying to complete the maze in DMZ packs? and having the sticker and feeling affiliated with a guild? and giving high fives to fellow members?

    yeah, that's totally fun. i don't go to prereleases to win [ie 'cause i suck], but i go to have fun. these gimmicks totally play into the experience i'm hoping for. i'm surprised i'm the first person to speak up on this thread -- am i really in the minority?


    At the DGM prerelease I went to the maze was completed after 1 round. That doesn't make for a very interesting activity. And we didn't get the stickers because they had run out previously.

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  • #15
    I like the gimmicky stuff, but my LGS doesn't really go in for it much. At AVR, we just opened the Helvault and distributed the loot. We the guild thing for the three RTR pre-releases, but you really had little choice in that. And most of the players weren't into it, so there wasn't a lot of high-fiving going on.

    I did win my DGM flight, though, which was cool. I've got a great little token that I use to separate my board from the main in my deck box, and the "achievement" on my Planeswalker Points account for winning the Maze. I highly doubt my LGS is going to bother with all this Hydra stuff for Theros.
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  • #16
    Quote from Hardened
    I wish they'd just put the energy into ensuring the set is balanced and fun.
    They have an entirely separate team to work on "experience design". The effort spent on Path of the Hero did not take anything away from Theros' design or development.

    While I'd rather the prerelease work differently, allowing players to pick their favorite color will lead to more people being happy, which for the prerelease, is fine.

    Having not seen the set, I am highly tempted to just say Red and done, but I'm going to have a nagging annoyance if want to pick red, but red doesn't look reliably good for sealed.


    That all said, I can't see the "seed pack" being any more than 6 cards, one of which being the promo. Promo, Uncommon, 4 commons; preselected and balanced. Granted, the Guild packs had plenty of unplayables, so I guess they could just do 15 red cards.


    I guess what I had the biggest issue with it was that it felt like the playable promo gave everyone's deck powerful draws. I don't want anyone to have powerful draws so I can outplay them. :p
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  • #17
    Quote from Crypt Rat
    They have an entirely separate team to work on "experience design".



    This is incorrect. Compare the names mentioned in the Hero's Path article to the names in Theros announcement. There's overlap.

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  • #18
    The fact that they're going with more and more gimmicks just shows that the ones they've done in the past have been well received by these players.


    You can have gimmicks without screwing up card pools though. The Helvault was a poorly executed gimmick, but no one was complaining about the quality of play that day. Contrast to the Gatecrash prerelease which was a gameplay disaster! If one particular color in Theros is overpowered like Boros was in Gatecrash, it's going to be a repeat of that -- everyone on Day 1 is pissed that they lost to the overpowered deck, Day 2 everyone plays the overpowered deck and the matches are boring.

    You can absolutely do the Epic Hero Quest without handing out seeded boosters. In fact the two have nothing to do with each other, yet they're being intertwined for some reason. Why not just have stores hand out Hero cards to whoever wants them? Like another promo. They won't have value so the players who don't care probably wouldn't even take them.

    I understand the argument that easier pools = happier players on the newer or more casual end of the spectrum. But realize that for many people, prereleases are their only opportunity to play an organized paper Sealed tournament. "Just play regular Sealed some other day" is not a valid argument for them. This is the one day, and they want to play regular Sealed. It seems like a valid complaint, not just sour grapes because the tournament isn't exactly what they wanted.
  • #19
    Quote from fnord
    This is incorrect. Compare the names mentioned in the Hero's Path article to the names in Theros announcement. There's overlap.
    *Rereads everything*

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  • #20
    Quote from Phyrre56
    You can have gimmicks without screwing up card pools though. The Helvault was a poorly executed gimmick, but no one was complaining about the quality of play that day. Contrast to the Gatecrash prerelease which was a gameplay disaster! If one particular color in Theros is overpowered like Boros was in Gatecrash, it's going to be a repeat of that -- everyone on Day 1 is pissed that they lost to the overpowered deck, Day 2 everyone plays the overpowered deck and the matches are boring.

    You can absolutely do the Epic Hero Quest without handing out seeded boosters. In fact the two have nothing to do with each other, yet they're being intertwined for some reason. Why not just have stores hand out Hero cards to whoever wants them? Like another promo. They won't have value so the players who don't care probably wouldn't even take them.

    I understand the argument that easier pools = happier players on the newer or more casual end of the spectrum. But realize that for many people, prereleases are their only opportunity to play an organized paper Sealed tournament. "Just play regular Sealed some other day" is not a valid argument for them. This is the one day, and they want to play regular Sealed. It seems like a valid complaint, not just sour grapes because the tournament isn't exactly what they wanted.


    I don't disagree with you at all, I'm just saying it's not surprising they're continuing to do this since it was well received by new players. Making specific color packs for Theros seems pretty needless to me as well (at least with RTR and GTC it was flavorful to "choose your guild"), but that's the way WotC wants to do things now apparently. I doubt they're going to listen to the vocal minority (aka longtime players like those of us on this forum), but one can hope.
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  • #21
    Well I'm voting on this decision the only way I can -- with my money. I skipped the Gatecrash & Dragon's Maze PR because I didn't enjoy "Pick your guild" and I'm going to skip Theros as well. Not the whole set, just the gimmicky PR. If others follow suit, then the favorable sales they are using to justify their plan might tick down jusssst enough for them to notice and reconsider.

    I'm not expecting them to ditch the gimmicks altogether but I would like to see ones that are better integrated into the gameplay. I abhor this concept of Hero Packs just so you can start a quest that has nothing to do with gameplay. The first 3 quest steps are:

    1. Attend prerelease, get a Hero in your special pack, register online
    2. Attend release, solve a puzzle on the wall (note: I assume the TO is supposed to make you solve the puzzle first but based on past experience with gimmicks, they will just hand out the Hero cards)
    3. Attend Theros Game Day, play a Constructed variant

    Considering it involves attendance at 3 separate events, I really question the % of players that will actively participate in this. Yet we're modifying everybody's Sealed experience to kick off an event that leads to a Constructed variant. Rolleyes

    I'd bet my life that there are more people who appreciate a traditional Sealed tournament than people who will do the Epic Quest.
    Last edited by Phyrre56: 7/25/2013 8:10:20 AM
  • #22
    I really don't think prerelease events are aimed at current players - I think they are events designed to bring new people into the stores. While a lot of us (me included) don't really enjoy all the gimmicks, some people find them fun. I actually did enjoy the Dragon's Maze aspect of the prerelease, though I didn't really like the whole guild pack aspect of any of the RTR events. I think it's best when they can do gimmicky stuff that doesn't really interfere with gameplay itself. Then again, I'm going to go to four prereleases no matter what.
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  • #23
    Getting a special pack that contains your preferred colors is pretty flavorful.
    If RTR Block makes you choose a guild Theros makes you Choose a God
  • #24
    Quote from angbagal »
    Getting a special pack that contains your preferred colors is pretty flavorful.
    If RTR Block makes you choose a guild Theros makes you Choose a God


    I hope not. Keep your damn religion out of my card game, Wizards!

    In all seriousness, though, I'm an incredibly competitive player, often to an irrational extent, but I've enjoyed the prerelease structures (so long as the gameplay is balanced) mostly due to their lack of viability when compared to traditional sealed play. It's a break from higher level play, which allows for a more relaxed approach.

    That said, the general difficulty in finding local, traditional sealed tournaments is a problem, especially given that many higher level players like to get in a fair amount of practice for events like PTQs and GPs. Having to just buy packs to test is really irritating, and when gimmick sealed is the only sealed option in any given season, I can definitely empathize with the frustration guys like Phyrre are feeling.


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  • #25
    I think prerelease gimmicks are awesome - super creative and flavorful and I think its absolutely the right thing for Wizards to be doing. Sure some of the more hardcore players may not like it as much, but I think its a home run with newer or more casual players. IMO this is the type of thing that grows the game which is good for everyone. We have months and months to be playing normal sealed tournaments or drafts, so I welcome something with a bit of a twist.
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