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    posted a message on March 13th Bans?
    I don't get the doomsaying in this thread. The last, great standard I was a part of was INN/RTR, which was nearly flawless in the sense that perfect mana, high-level threats and answers with near-perfect color balance made any given deck viable on any given day. That's not rose-colored glasses, you can look back at top 8, even top 16's and see crazy variance in the types, builds, and even just 75 in your average netdeck. Cards we've now had deemed 'too powerful' in the new world order like Snapcaster Mage, Abrupt Decay, Thragtusk/Resto, Hellrider, Lili of the Veil, Sphinx's Revelation and Delver of Secrets changed the face of Modern (for better or worse), and we're sitting here talking about Pithing Needle being OP?! Pithing Needle?! The sideboard card that was barely a 2-of and by far your worst, most desperate hate?

    IMO, the biggest problem is this: The $20 rare at the time was Thragtusk. People complained that 5 mana was to little for a 5/3, 5 life, and a 3/3 beast on his way out, plus his synergy with Restoration Angel. He was a natural foil to decks that wanted to burn you down in 5 turns (Naya Blitz, anyone?) In this same format, Victim of Night kept going in and out of mainboards because we were doing math on the three(!) different 2cc instant kill spells and we had to figure out which killed the highest number of varied threats in the format (yes, the math was actually relevant because the meta was so varied).

    The big bad this time around is a 2cc 4/4, flying, vigilant creature that nullifies all sorcery removal, including board wipes, and in a format where it's one of the few things in the air. Now while I agree that's bad, I'd like to point out a creature that I think is the poster child for everything wrong with new design - Elder Deep-Fiend. He's not even that in vogue right now, but he makes my point perfectly. A 5/6 body with flash, with an on-cast (basically uncounterable) effect of tapping down 4 permanents, and the native ability to reduce his casting cost. That's literally the dumbest thing I've ever heard of. It seems like WotC is going to need a smaller font to fit all the freakin' text they're jamming on creatures these days, and he's NOT EVEN THAT GOOD RIGHT NOW. He literally is an uncounterable spell, a huge body, at a cost reduction, all for a base cost that's less than if you cast a spell and play a flash 5/6. And you're going to kill that with mostly sorcery speed removal, a 2-color 3cc instant, or a 3cc flash enchantment?

    I mean, the problem is all around us. If Aetherworks Marvel was Quicksilver Amulet, Emrakul doesn't get banned. If Ruinous Path was Heroes Downfall, Gideon wouldn't be as scary (he really wasn't that relevant before Kaladesh, his price tag was nose-diving until vehicles). If Vehicles wasn't such a plodding disaster on every level, graveyard hate existed, the Cat said target creature, and so on, we'd STILL have Creatures: The Gathering. We're not using spells anymore. Creatures are too pushed for the format they're in, but still not good enough for Modern. Sets are 70% draft garbage that murders trees and the remaining 30% consume all value while the format is solved in 2 weeks and leaves us 3 decks to play.

    I just don't see this as fixable, which is why I've taken a step back from standard until this mess gets sorted out. It may be another 6 months before we even see the next block have a chance to shine if Amounkhet doesn't do enough to dethrone the big-three meta. R&D needs to scrap every mantra of design they think they've picked up about power levels since RTR, and get back to strong, balanced, and most importantly simple cards that do what their colors do best, and leave the rest up to us.
    Posted in: Standard (Type 2)
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    posted a message on Pro Tour Aether Revolt/Dublin - Standard - 2/3-5
    Quote from hiitechk »
    I feel that this PT goes to show that Standard is in a healthy place and that the Mardu Vehicles decklist that everyone came to the conclusion that would be the best deck for the tournament. Now that all the data is available to the public, the meta will shift once again with all the other decks taking Vehicle.deks more serious when it comes to tuning their decklists. I don't think there should be any emergency bans after this PT, but I also do feel that Vehicles are right up there with Phyrexian Mana, Dredge, and Delve when it comes to powerful abilities.


    The data shows us 'health'? I'm sorry, but data is cold hard facts and health of the format is one of the most subjective things in the world to measure. What you call health I call absolutely abysmal. We went from a 3-4 deck standard to a 2-3 deck standard in a matter of weeks since the banning. Last week's horrendous showing in Richmond of 1-4 and 6th of the top 8 being Copy Cat and the rest being BG variants spooked the pros into thinking it was going to be one or the other. That thinking positioned Vehicles to dominate, because 3 Shock main plus Heart of Kiran basically nullified the combo portion of Copy Cat and BG can't go threat for threat with Mardu because they stopped running Ishkana. The format is really, really soft to flyers atm and between Gideon and Heart, there was no way to stop the flow of aggression. You basically had to have a Nevinyrral's Disk to keep their side of the field under control with the tools available to BG and Copy Cat. The mass removal and 1-for-1's just weren't cutting it.

    After this weekend, I don't even know what to say. It seemed obvious after last week's tourney that (most likely) the Cat and Winding Constrictor get a ban and we all muddle through figuring the format out until the next set...now I have no idea. Banning Heart of Kiran within 3 weeks of the last ban that also affected the deck is a very sorry statement. Banning the cat just makes Jeskai Control have to play fair, but then BG and Mardu still stomp them. BG losing Constrictor makes them probably move back to Ishkana, which is where they're probably headed anyway. Banning nothing at all basically says they didn't make the problem any better with bannings in the first place, and just let us have this 3-deck format for the next few months and hope attendance doesn't crash like the Hindenburg. It seems like lose-lose for WotC and players at this point. They've made a mess of things and we have to lie in it.

    I mean, if you measure health on a scale of Caw-Blade to Innistrad/RTR, I'd say this is still languishing at a 3 at best like the last survey said. It's not diverse, answers and threats are way out of balance, attendance has dropped, confidence is lost, and we're sitting here talking about ADDING to a standard banlist. By the by, what respect do you think is going to be given to Vehicles when tuning decks? Jeskai was already running Radiant Flames and Fumigate, BG had a fat removal package. What other deck do you see rising up from nowhere to deal with all 3 of these, and what hate are they bringing against Mardu that wasn't already in BG and Copycat that didn't work for them?
    Posted in: Standard (Type 2)
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    posted a message on State of Modern Thread: bans, format health, reprints, new cards, and more!
    Quote from Tanukimo »
    Quote from Sabertooth »
    im really afraid of wizards criteria, growing more and more over time
    - your deck cannot win "with consistency" before turn 4
    - your deck should be interactive
    - your deck should not be answered only with sideboard
    - your deck should not cause logistical issues
    - your deck should not have big metagame share
    - your deck should not make a color less diverse
    - your deck should not win a lot (the only format where you are cheering for your deck to lose, afraid of bannings)

    basically, play abzan, jund or grixis, or a bad deck or a deck slaughtered by sideboards (like affinity and this deck its not even safe) or be afraid for the rest of your life as a modern player


    That's exactly how I felt after the Twin ban, and I'm beginning to feel that way again.


    As someone that despised the Twin deck, I still don't feel that banning was ever explained very well. It really didn't break any of the format rules, and the explanation they offered was plain weak. A better argument could have been that any blue unbanning would have to pass the 'is it degenerate in Twin?' litmus test, which both Storm and Twin did have a big say in back then. You could even make the argument that it's unlikely we'd have Ancestral Vision right now if it wasn't for the Twin banning, even if they may not have run it. Since JtMS and Preordain/Ponder remain on the list and we've never been given anything close to Opt or Counterspell, any hopes of pruning Twin to make room for control were dead on arrival. So we cycle back to why it was banned, and I still don't see the reason. It didn't do anything except kill a deck type from the format, flush the deck value down the drain, and tick off a lot of people. Sending a message like that to players and having no positive effect is dangerous. You can only do it so many times before people lose faith in the format, especially when these banning come with no warning at all and blindside us.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
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    posted a message on State of Modern Thread: bans, format health, reprints, new cards, and more!
    Quote from Lord Seth »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Lord Seth »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Lord Seth »

    Asking "if Cloudpost is too strong, why isn't Tron too strong?" is akin to asking "if Deathrite Shaman is too strong, why isn't Noble Hierarch too strong?" In both cases, the answer is obvious: The latter is quite a bit weaker than the former. 12-Post is quite a bit stronger than Urzatron is. It ramps more effectively, it's thwarted less by land destruction, and it staves off aggro better thanks to Glimmerpost gaining life.

    In regards to Eye of Ugin vs. Tron, you ignore the fact that Eye of Ugin starts the ramp (for Eldrazi) on turn 1, whereas Tron can't get any ramp until the third turn (well I guess with a crazy good hand you can get 3 mana off an Urza's Tower on the second turn if you're running Explore, but almost all Tron builds have dropped that card). There's a big difference between a card that instantly gives you 2 mana versus one that can't give you that ramp until the third turn and requires you to assemble two other specific lands.

    Basically, Eye of Ugin and Cloudpost ramp way better than Tron. So wondering why Tron is okay but those aren't is like asking why Time Warp isn't banned when one considers how amazing Time Walk is.


    You literally took what I said, quoted it, then changed the wording and meaning of the quote in your first sentence, and somehow missed the point at the same time. What I was saying with all of those examples is WotC has yet to clearly define what they want this format to look like. They do have a problem with Ramp in the Cloudpost form and the nuisance that Eldrazi was thanks to Eye of Ugin, yet the 'feel-bads' about Tron has been allowed to stay, albeit begrudgingly. Tron can still, even now, clean up in g1, then take g2 before the 3 and 4cc hate cards remove their primary strategy. Now, that's not to say that Tron should be banned, as a matter of fact I'm 100% opposed to banning based on words like 'feeling' and 'dislike' as opposed to 'format-warping', 'stifling', 'difficult to answer' or 'over-represented'.

    I hope I clarified my position better, because that one line was not only taken out of context but you answered a question/argument I never asked.

    But my post does answer your question. 12-Post gets banned because it's too powerful. Tron, which is not anywhere near as powerful, is spared. Trying to claim they have "yet to clearly define what they want this format to look like" (at least in regards to this specific case) is silly because 12-Post got banned because it was too good at what it did. Tron, which is not as powerful, is apparently at an acceptable power level.

    As for the Eldrazi, comparing the single most dominant deck in the format's history with a deck that tends to be in the 3-5% area is just plain silly.

    There are certainly a number of criticisms that one can aim at Wizards of the Coast in regards to their handling of the Modern banned list as well as alleged dissonances in what's banned or what isn't banned, but this is not one of them. There is no disconnect or dissonance or additional need to "define" things in regards to 12-Post and Eldrazi being banned but Tron not being banned. The first two are significantly more powerful than the latter, so it makes perfect sense for them to get bans while Tron doesn't.


    I presented a laundry list of arguments, this was only one among them. So, no, it still doesn't. You disagree with this specific example, that's fine, but the point remains.

    No, it does, because I was responding to that one particular point, not the idea in general. The example was silly and so I responded to it.

    It should not be difficult to understand why 12-Post got banned out of existence (and Eldrazi got a hard nerfing) but Tron was never targeted with a ban (it suffered collateral damage, but it wasn't the reason Eye of Ugin was lost).

    So you get these semi-contradictory statements like 'well, Tron isn't as bad, so that kind of ramp is okay', until something comes along that makes it not okay (like the collateral damage of the Eye banning because of another deck's ridiculousness). So, it's less about why one kind of ramp is okay and another isn't because of power level, because that is very subjective and highly subject to change.

    12-Post being better than Tron is "subjective" in the same way that Ancestral Vision being better than Concentrate is "subjective." There's a few ways you can point to the latter being better than the former, but on the whole the first is clearly substantially better than the second.

    There's no inconsistency or contradiction between Cloudpost and Eye of Ugin getting banned but the Urza lands remaining untouched. They on dramatically different power levels. You mention things can "change" (after all, Eye of Ugin was legal for quite a while) but that "change" was pretty objective in that it came from new cards getting printed that interacted unfavorably with the older cards.


    K, buddy, I've tried to wrangle the conversation back to my actual point like 3 times now and you're just not having it. Thank you for the lesson in understanding how 12-post is more egregious than Tron, still was never my point nor did I put them on the same level, but you managed to sit me down and explain it slowly like 3 times now. You win, just for the sake of not getting derailed any further.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
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    posted a message on State of Modern Thread: bans, format health, reprints, new cards, and more!
    Quote from Lord Seth »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Lord Seth »
    Quote from SephX »
    Think about what they're saying with Cloudpost banning and Eye of Ugin. Ramp that strong shouldn't be there. So why is tron?

    Asking "if Cloudpost is too strong, why isn't Tron too strong?" is akin to asking "if Deathrite Shaman is too strong, why isn't Noble Hierarch too strong?" In both cases, the answer is obvious: The latter is quite a bit weaker than the former. 12-Post is quite a bit stronger than Urzatron is. It ramps more effectively, it's thwarted less by land destruction, and it staves off aggro better thanks to Glimmerpost gaining life.

    In regards to Eye of Ugin vs. Tron, you ignore the fact that Eye of Ugin starts the ramp (for Eldrazi) on turn 1, whereas Tron can't get any ramp until the third turn (well I guess with a crazy good hand you can get 3 mana off an Urza's Tower on the second turn if you're running Explore, but almost all Tron builds have dropped that card). There's a big difference between a card that instantly gives you 2 mana versus one that can't give you that ramp until the third turn and requires you to assemble two other specific lands.

    Basically, Eye of Ugin and Cloudpost ramp way better than Tron. So wondering why Tron is okay but those aren't is like asking why Time Warp isn't banned when one considers how amazing Time Walk is.


    You literally took what I said, quoted it, then changed the wording and meaning of the quote in your first sentence, and somehow missed the point at the same time. What I was saying with all of those examples is WotC has yet to clearly define what they want this format to look like. They do have a problem with Ramp in the Cloudpost form and the nuisance that Eldrazi was thanks to Eye of Ugin, yet the 'feel-bads' about Tron has been allowed to stay, albeit begrudgingly. Tron can still, even now, clean up in g1, then take g2 before the 3 and 4cc hate cards remove their primary strategy. Now, that's not to say that Tron should be banned, as a matter of fact I'm 100% opposed to banning based on words like 'feeling' and 'dislike' as opposed to 'format-warping', 'stifling', 'difficult to answer' or 'over-represented'.

    I hope I clarified my position better, because that one line was not only taken out of context but you answered a question/argument I never asked.

    But my post does answer your question. 12-Post gets banned because it's too powerful. Tron, which is not anywhere near as powerful, is spared. Trying to claim they have "yet to clearly define what they want this format to look like" (at least in regards to this specific case) is silly because 12-Post got banned because it was too good at what it did. Tron, which is not as powerful, is apparently at an acceptable power level.

    As for the Eldrazi, comparing the single most dominant deck in the format's history with a deck that tends to be in the 3-5% area is just plain silly.

    There are certainly a number of criticisms that one can aim at Wizards of the Coast in regards to their handling of the Modern banned list as well as alleged dissonances in what's banned or what isn't banned, but this is not one of them. There is no disconnect or dissonance or additional need to "define" things in regards to 12-Post and Eldrazi being banned but Tron not being banned. The first two are significantly more powerful than the latter, so it makes perfect sense for them to get bans while Tron doesn't.


    I presented a laundry list of arguments, this was only one among them. So, no, it still doesn't. You disagree with this specific example, that's fine, but the point remains. Since it's inception, Modern has provoked reactive bans to what they thought was an acceptable power level, and then realized it wasn't. Meanwhile, the player base has tended toward 'solving' the format with more and more degenerate, difficult to answer strategies, the same strategies that by and large simply don't work in Legacy. That format has a myriad of better threats and answers, and I would dare day it's far more interactive than Modern, more skill-based, and a lot less of the 'rock, paper, scissors' nature of Modern. This seems to have been no end of trouble for WotC in trying to prune the format when it's just plain missing something. So you get these semi-contradictory statements like 'well, Tron isn't as bad, so that kind of ramp is okay', until something comes along that makes it not okay (like the collateral damage of the Eye banning because of another deck's ridiculousness). So, it's less about why one kind of ramp is okay and another isn't because of power level, because that is very subjective and highly subject to change.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
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    posted a message on PRIMER - Boros Human Burn (new tier 1 deck?)
    Quote from cOreGon »
    I have the same question. We'll need some draw filtering to replace Copter. I'm interested in a couple of the new spells, the first that come to mind are Shock and Hungry Flames. I'm actually thinking about MB Chandra, ToD as she provides a relevant pseudo card draw/burn and removal ability, but I'm nervous about the effect on our curve after -3 Copter. I do have to believe Heart of Kiran could be a relevant replacement, though we obviously still lose the loot. I need to take a look through the set again with the lens of additions for the deck, as I've mostly been tinkering with fresh brews.

    Any thoughts anyone?

    Side note/random thought: has anyone tried mono red with our new spells? It can be built to be REALLY strong. Sin Prodder, Bedlam Reveler, Combustible Gearhulk is a gnarly shell. I've been really surprised/impressed with red gearhulk. He can push through a LOT of damage with his ETB trigger, though I've found 3-5 damage to be more normal. I bet you after he burns for 6 your opponent will be letting you draw 3 the next time you cast him. Even when he "fizzles" for just a few damage he's putting spells in the yard for Reveler discounts and pushing you through the deck.

    Sorry for the random thoughts, I figure as were a tribal burn deck we may be interested in other burn/creature plans. That said, I definitely hope to flesh out Boros Humans post rotation/ban!


    At the start of Kaladesh Standard, I immediately tried Boros Vehicles, and my experience was miserable (2-2 in multiple tourneys for 2 straight weeks), the night I called an audible swapped out the dwarves for Humans, I went 5 out of the past 7 weeks undefeated with my build. It became a hybrid of the Mardu Vehicle shell so I could get into Unlicensed Disintegration because I was tired of throwing away matches to Avacyn. Now, with Smuggler's Copter gone, I really wonder if I'm going to continue with it. Losing the Copter didn't hurt much, as much list has so much stupid synergy I often won without seeing one, I'm more concerned with the addition of Yahenni's Expertise and Fatal Push slowing me down on top of losing the effective Copter. So, I'll put up my original list, and the changes I'm going to be using to test it out:



    Right now, I think the only changes I'm making right away are -4 Smuggler's Copter in favor of +2 Heart of Kiran and +2 Cathartic Reuinion. Some mild draw/filter would be a welcome sight and if Heart turns out to be the nuts, great. I'm much more concerned about going all-in to a Yahenni's Expertise on 4 than whether my deck has card filtering. The number of times I've just gone Inventor T1, Thraben and Inventor T2, Thalia's Lieutenant on T3 and just watch my opponent fold to the pressure never required the Copter. And we all know how gross/wonderful it feels to go +2 counters on Thalia's Lieutenant on the Hanweir swinging, and that hasn't changed.

    I don't think burn is the right thing for the deck. Hard removal is where it's at. Clear the way and push forward. Fleetwheel is basically a Ball Lightning that you get to keep and does serious work. I had Harnessed Lightning before and I absolutely hated almost never having enough energy for Avacyn. Once I had Unlicensed Disintegration, I never looked back. Burn and a hard kill spell? 4 more please.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Standard)
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    posted a message on State of Modern Thread: bans, format health, reprints, new cards, and more!
    Quote from Lord Seth »
    Quote from SephX »
    Think about what they're saying with Cloudpost banning and Eye of Ugin. Ramp that strong shouldn't be there. So why is tron?

    Asking "if Cloudpost is too strong, why isn't Tron too strong?" is akin to asking "if Deathrite Shaman is too strong, why isn't Noble Hierarch too strong?" In both cases, the answer is obvious: The latter is quite a bit weaker than the former. 12-Post is quite a bit stronger than Urzatron is. It ramps more effectively, it's thwarted less by land destruction, and it staves off aggro better thanks to Glimmerpost gaining life.

    In regards to Eye of Ugin vs. Tron, you ignore the fact that Eye of Ugin starts the ramp (for Eldrazi) on turn 1, whereas Tron can't get any ramp until the third turn (well I guess with a crazy good hand you can get 3 mana off an Urza's Tower on the second turn if you're running Explore, but almost all Tron builds have dropped that card). There's a big difference between a card that instantly gives you 2 mana versus one that can't give you that ramp until the third turn and requires you to assemble two other specific lands.

    Basically, Eye of Ugin and Cloudpost ramp way better than Tron. So wondering why Tron is okay but those aren't is like asking why Time Warp isn't banned when one considers how amazing Time Walk is.


    You literally took what I said, quoted it, then changed the wording and meaning of the quote in your first sentence, and somehow missed the point at the same time. What I was saying with all of those examples is WotC has yet to clearly define what they want this format to look like. They do have a problem with Ramp in the Cloudpost form and the nuisance that Eldrazi was thanks to Eye of Ugin, yet the 'feel-bads' about Tron has been allowed to stay, albeit begrudgingly. Tron can still, even now, clean up in g1, then take g2 before the 3 and 4cc hate cards remove their primary strategy. Now, that's not to say that Tron should be banned, as a matter of fact I'm 100% opposed to banning based on words like 'feeling' and 'dislike' as opposed to 'format-warping', 'stifling', 'difficult to answer' or 'over-represented'.

    I hope I clarified my position better, because that one line was not only taken out of context but you answered a question/argument I never asked.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
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    posted a message on State of Modern Thread: bans, format health, reprints, new cards, and more!
    Quote from Lantern »
    I'd like to start out the thread in a positive direction. Recently Wizards said:

    We're also having a lot of very serious discussions about hate cards and powerful answers. As you have noticed with Fatal Push, we are not totally against printing very powerful answers in Standard, but we need to up that number. The pendulum of threats versus answers has swung too far toward the threats, and that has caused problems with our metagame. Our decision to not print enough answer cards also has shown to be a real problem. Some parts of this were conscious, like pushing story cards and new card types, and some were a result of moving to two-block world and removing the core set where we traditionally put many of the answers to these kinds of cards. We learned a lot from the last three blocks on how the two-block world should work and are incorporating those ideas into future sets. Again, you won't see all the changes immediately, but we are incorporating those learnings into sets you will play with soon.


    A lot of players including myself has been saying this as far back as theros. The answer vs threat count was ramping up more and more, and we've most certainly felt the weight of that since unlike standard, we dont dump our power level once a year.

    I have been very mad at the bans (not the cards banned, but the fact we needed to ban so often in the first place) and I think wizards might finally be realizing using the banlist as a power cap isnt working in the long run.


    I both agree and disagree with your sentiments about banning to contain the power cap. In a lot of ways, I don't think it's gone far enough, while standard kill spells/counter magic has become so conditional it's almost a joke. I'd be willing to bet you could right this second put Spell Snare in Standard and control still would struggle, as every hard card counter is still at a 3 cmc and board wipes are at 5. Modern has the opposite problem. In a field of some of the best answers ever printed, you can't silver bullet the stupid number of ways you can die.

    A lot of more recent design philosophies are to blame for that. Basic 1 cmc cantrips went the way of the dodo, hexproof replaced shroud which reduced risk, and you started getting creatures that came in with a spell effect at half the cost of both combined. You get Eldrazi doing too much, you get sticky 1/1's that refused to die like Inkmoth Nexus, and primarily because of 1 deck, Preordain and Ponder went from fair to broken. It's not just that there aren't enough answers (I agree there isn't), it's also that some of the strategies that exist in Modern just shouldn't be there.

    Think about what they're saying with Cloudpost banning and Eye of Ugin. Ramp that strong shouldn't be there. So why is tron? Look at Blazing Shoal - we can't have Inkmoth Nexus end the game Turn 2, but Turn 4 doesn't still feel ridiculous? Mental Misstep is too good to police Turn 1 plays, but they want a Turn 4 format? Birthing Pod was considered a format staple until they printed a cheap 4/5 trample with Lightning Helix on it, and it was the deck's fault, not the broken creature they made? They've literally banned/unintentionally crippled Storm's ability to go off instead of giving us the cards and just kill the win con. If anything, I think they should have used a broader brush and just said 'we don't want storm, we don't want dredge, we don't want caw blade, we don't want infect, and we don't want turbo-ramp, here's 30 cards you can't have, now go nuts'.

    Modern, as many have said, has an identity crisis from the beginning and the more the format is 'solved' the less fun it seems to be to play it. I already cashed out a couple months back. I had the cards for almost any deck I wanted, but I got tired of skills not meaning as much as what deck is on the other side of the table. Like Legacy, Modern punishes mistakes, but if you're in a bad matchup, it doesn't reward skill for crap.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
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    posted a message on B&R Update: Emrakul, Copter, Reflector Mage banned in Standard, Gitaxian Probe, Gravetroll in Modern!
    Wizards threatening to ban cards in standard makes for cheap magic cards. And wards away the hoarders. Have they finally found a solution? We'll see...


    No, you're reading too much into it. Call me cynical, but Emmy took the hit so they don't have to admit the rest of the Eldrazi were stupid broken and Marvel should have been the target. They killed a good rare because it was good, and if Saheeli combo turns out to be the bee's knees, the cat gets banned. They're not going to ban their precious poster children (Planeswalkers) because they sell sets, and cards like Gideon are always going to pop up in that card type. Hoarders gonna hoard, sir. Confidence is shaken, sure, but is Liliana down at all? Nope, still $40? Guess confidence wasn't shaken that much.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 6

    posted a message on B&R Update: Emrakul, Copter, Reflector Mage banned in Standard, Gitaxian Probe, Gravetroll in Modern!
    It seems like WotC painted themselves into a corner here, and this feels like a knee-jerk reaction to a format that hasn't even been defined yet. For years, they've been printing these big, stupid, splashy creatures with more abilities and keywords than they have any business having (Elder Deep Fiend is the greatest recent example, as it does more things than a creature and a spell separately should cost combined), and meanwhile telling us that Murder is adequate and board wipes need to start at 5. What did they think was going to happen? Spells get the shaft, and creatures get better, control gets pushed out, and combo usually hasn't had a place in years. It's been Creatures: The Gathering for years now.

    But now, after going through the unnecessarily watered down Innistrad, we have a really efficient, solid creature that slots well into decks, gives a loot effect (big deal for red or green, kinda meh by blue's standards) and this is somehow too powerful. It can't compete in Modern, like even as a consideration. It requires a creature on the field to attack with it, basically. It becomes a creature before its attack trigger can go on the stack, thus making it vulnerable before its true power really shines. Yet this was deemed 'too powerful' for standard, and banned before 2 MORE kill spells and 2 more creatures put it in check, including what is probably one of the greatest kill spells ever printed. So we banned a good creature because its good. It's Smuggler's Copter's fault it's good, not Wizard's fault that they won't print Doom Blade and Lightning Strike. Makes sense.

    Reflector Mage just seems dumb. It's so far past its hayday in Standard, I can only imagine it was a lot less the reason they gave (UW Flash is strangling the format...cause it isn't) and a lot more because of the stupid defense it puts up for the 'oops, i win' nature of Saheeli combo. Like Smuggler's Copter, they didn't even give the meta a chance to adjust and try to deal with it.

    Emrakul is just another dumb Eldrazi in a string of dumb, broken Eldrazi we now have to deal with WAY after their welcome has worn off, thanks to the longer rotation schedule. Did he have to go? Well, in a vacuum I'd say yes, if there wasn't Ulamog, Kozilek, Oblivion Sower, etc to continue abusing. Free/greatly reduced bombs never feel fair, but then you kill the enabler, not the creatures. Every one of those Eldrazi mostly sees fringe play atm, not banning Marvel changes that, it doesn't kill the deck. (not that I'm advocating that either, but the message here is so mixed from WotC, basing ban choices on things like 'fairness', 'feeling', or 'usage' and not using words like 'dominating', 'over-represented', 'stifling', or anything else you'd expect from a well-thought banning decision).

    Doing this now and then opening the door that they can ban again after a major tournament doesn't make me confident to buy into Aether Revolt. It doesn't make me confident to continue standard play at any expense to myself. I'm on a Mardu Vehicles build of my own. I have rarely lost with it, and I mean rarely. I lose Copter. It stings, but I can probably be just fine losing it in exchange for Heart of Kiran, but if I was, say, a UW Flash player and just found out my deck got nerfed almost to oblivion, I wouldn't be spending a penny on Saheeli's right now. Confidence is shaken, and not for a good enough reason, in my opinion.

    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 1

    posted a message on Modest Eternal Masters reprint
    It's kinda weird. Here in Charlotte, you couldn't get 8 guys together for an EMA draft 2 weeks after release, let alone now. Not at any of the 6-7 stores in the greater metro area. I don't get why the sudden 'modest' reprint. But hey, I'm sure somebody is interested in this.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on Is Wizards seeing the same Standard as everyone else?
    There's a lot of coulda, shoulda, woulda about CoCo, but I think that's letting WotC off the hook too easy. This isn't a missed OP card, it's perfectly reasonable for what it does, and your entire deck is built around it. If it were broken, it wouldn't take a single Grafdigger's Cage in Modern to shut it down (which it does quite nicely if the CoCo player doesn't immediately have Quasali Pridemage on hand.)

    The problem isn't that CoCo dominates the meta, it's that the meta can't handle something truly powerful. The cards that go into Bant Company are great cards on their own merits, but at instant speed, possibly cheating 6 mana for 4, it breaks the game in half. Add in a set of Dromoka's Command, Negate/Dispel side and you've shored up every answer you need to have. Where is 2cc for 3 damage at instant speed? 2cc kills spells? 1cc hand disruption? Creatures in other colors/strategies that go over or keep the pace with Bant Company? You just don't have it right now.

    The post from WotC isn't oblivious, it's disingenuous. Rather than reporting the facts, learning their lessons, and powering Standard at least to reasonable levels (and get rid of these stupid Eldrazi and other creatures that have become more relevant than spells), they try to paint a picture that isn't happening of a world they want to exist, not the one they live in. I mean, the design of CoCo isn't complicated, it's brilliant. It's the kind of power level and build-around-me you want in the game. But watering down card selection has to be done uniformly, or you get situations where the power gems of a set dwarf everything else by so much that the format becomes stifled and mundane and loaded with mirror matches.
    Posted in: Standard Archives
  • 3

    posted a message on Mothership Spoilers 6/29
    I wonder if they ever actually pulled back for a second and looked at the tribes as a whole. Last Innistrad, Zombies worked on the back of Diregraf Ghoul, Gravecrawler, and Geralf's Messenger. Humans ran off of Doomed Traveler, Champion of the Parish, and Mayor of Avabruck. Vampires started with Stromkirk Noble, and topped out at Olivia Voldaren. With this set, humans are in that 1-2cc sweet spot, while every other tribe is getting 3-5 drops that are mostly unplayable trash because they can't keep up with the sweet curve on Humans.

    What a design fail.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 5

    posted a message on This set is foolishly too expensive
    Quote from sealteamfive »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from sealteamfive »

    Actually, I've gone back through a number of Wizards' posts through MaRo and others. I couldn't specifically find a post anywhere where Wizards said they specifically do not pay attention to the secondary market. On the contrary, I did find a post from Maro stating that the reason Goyf was a mythic was to preserve its value. While not specifically tied to the secondary market they do mention they didn't want to crash that cards value.

    I read through your portion on collectors, but I didn't really get the gist of it. I'm guessing that you say that card values only matter if you're actually buying or selling? If that's the case, it's sort of true, but sort of not. There is a psychological portion that also ties to the value of cards. My collection is pretty valuable and something that is an asset. If something catastrophic were to happen, I would liquidate it for some portion of its value. It wouldn't be my first alternative, but it's a financial source at my disposal if times get rough. Collectors are kind of an oddity all around. But they(we) do reasonably expect our collections to be worth what we paid for it - even if that value is as ethereal as card prices.

    So, if you really don't trust Wizards' to do right by their game, are you liquidating out of it? It seems to me that if you think things are going to go off a cliff, the smart move would be to pull out before things go bad.


    It was PAX East, where they previewed Theros and Modern Masters 2013. They had a Q&A panel, they were specifically asked about card choice in the set vs. secondary market pricing, their response was we don't concern ourselves with the secondary market. So whether the lopsidedness of MMA2 was stupidity or an about-face on that policy remains to be seen, but surely we can agree that the egregious lack of transparency on this issue leads to speculation that their motives are exactly as I said above - stupidity, or they're intentionally doing this to the community. The worst they can do is say nothing on the subject.

    That last sentence in the second paragraph REALLY irks me. What makes you think that you, as a collector, are in any way entitled to an expectation of ANY return close to what you paid for a product after you walk out of the store with it? It's paper. For a card game. I could understand if you felt that way if the paper was a treasury bond, but it's not true of cars, stocks, houses, or most any other commodity in this life. Also, and I can't believe I have to say this, you seem like a really intelligent cat, but Magic cards are NOT an investment! Not, with a big ol' N. You invest money into it with no expectation but the fun to have collected all of a set, finished a deck, played with your friends, made some new ones, nailed a cool trade, etc.

    To make matters worse, this has seriously spiraled downwards over the last 3-4 years. Players with sets of ABU duals saw their 'investment' almost double in price, and now feel they're entitled to not what they paid for it, but the doubling the market said it did. Legacy loses its tournament support, prices barely waffle, and so it goes. Congrats, y'all, you killed the format. But at least you have $300 Tundras to sit in your binder for a format you can't ever really play. On the other end of the spectrum, Modern, the format that's supposed to be immune to this toxicity the RL created, has watched prices rise while we keep getting 'wait for the next set' for every missed reprint for 4 years now. C'mon, man, I paid $8 for my first Snapcaster. There's no reason the guy next to me has to pay $50 to play at the same table so I can 'keep' that value, man, that's just greed.

    For your last point, yes, I did. I kept about 1500 cards, all Modern, and sold my collection of 10 years, some 50,000 cards, in February. The collection was valued at approx. 16k. Know what I got for it? 6,000. That's right, one-third. I kept everything in binders by set, ordered by collector number/color, no more than 4 copies of any given card. I took meticulous care of that collection. Some 9-12 complete sets. I wasn't in a bind, or hurting for cash. Commander hasn't been the same since Wizards stuck it's nose in it. I played with BFZ and I hated it. I was never going to be stupid enough to get into the dying format that is Legacy. So I said screw it, you can't take it with you when you die, let's cash out. Do something nice with the family. Breaking the chains of being a 'gotta catch them all' collector was probably the single most freeing thing I've ever done. I crack prize packs now and keep only what I think I can use. I just recently opened a pack of Oath and was more excited for the Pulse of Murasa than I was the foil Kozilek behind an Eldrazi Displacer. I bindered both of those for a wopping 5 minutes before someone offered stuff I actually wanted for them. No, I don't trust Wizards with the future of the game, so yeah, I put my money where my mout was and cashed out. I still love hanging with my friends and going to tournaments, but now I do it on my terms. WotC has to earn back my trust before I give them another red cent. My LGS, however, I'll still support them with entry, singles, and supplies. Might even draft here and there (I tried the EMA lottery last night, actually - a $15 Gamble and I won 4-0 with a peasant deck...just like every draft I've played for 5 sets now), but I've spent such a fortune on this game, I think it's long overdue I be shown some good will on the part of WotC.

    Give me a product with real value, and i don't mean EV, I mean stop stuffing reprint sets with filler trash and calling it a limited format, and I'll buy in. I want to pay Wizards, not some company that bought 1800 cases from them to flip to me for a profit for the few singles I need. Then they can have my money again.

    Thanks for clearing up the not paying attention to the secondary market question. I probably spent an hour looking for that quote but couldn't find it. Definitely concerning when you two entities at Wizards (PAX panel and MaRo) saying things that directly contradict one another. This is an issue Wizards really needs to get a stance on and then stick with it. I get that flip flopping on it is a problem, and potentially a serious one.

    On the issue of collections being worth what we paid for it, I do think it is reasonable for it to be valued at something close to what I paid for it. I do want to note that I believe there is a huge difference between the value of a collection and its true selling price. I didn't say I expect it to appreciate over time, or that I should be guaranteed a return. There are no guarantees. But many assets do appreciate over time with the exception of cars. I also do not think of my collection as an investment. An investment implies that I am specifically looking for growth and will eventually sell for a profit. While I am hopeful the value of my collection grows, I have absolutely no intention of selling it. And even if I did as you mention, I would take a bloodbath trying to sell it for about 1/2 of what its worth. With all that said, I do understand the risks associated with buying cards that are not on the RL. There is no expectation on my part of Wizards preserving the value of the cards in my collection and I understand that any of them could be reprinted in the next set.

    I understand your point about card prices being nuts. Modern as a format has probably gone up 50-60% in the 5 years since the format has been created. No disagreements there. But Modern and Legacy are different beasts. The RL pretty much guarantees that Legacy will never be a supported format. But if you look at it from Wizards POV, this is a good thing. Modern as a format doesn't really make them any money. It's a place where people who are entrenched in the game can still play with old cards and give them a place to hold value. Standard and Limited is what Wizards wants to push since that is where they make money. A high barrier to entry pushes people into the arena Wizards wants them to play in. I understand from the players' POV that this sucks if you are trying to enter the format since it's (comparatively speaking to standard) prohibitively expensive. But once you're in, it doesn't really effect you that dramatically. Wizards' thought process (I believe) is that they do not want to actively promote growth in that format, but want to reward long time players that retained cards from their time in standard and give players a reason to hold on to them.

    Right, wrong or indifferent, this appears to be their strategy.

    I'm sorry you sold out of the game. My hope is that Wizards is able to do enough to get your confidence back and you buy in again. I agree that they certainly are not perfect in their decision making, but they are successfully growing the game and its player base and have been for several years. You are certainly doing what you feel best by voting with your wallet. If enough people think like you, at the minimum you will get Wizards' attention.

    One thing that does frustrate me is that everyone thinks these sets should be full of value with no filler. That just doesn't fit up with the current model of selling cards by packs. Every set that Wizards' releases, be it EMA, SOI, or even Alpha, has an overwhelming majority of filler. That is the model of randomized cards in packs. I actually think you have a better chance of pulling some money in EMA than you do in, say, BFZ.

    /edit I wanted to take a second to say thank you SephX. I've appreciated the tone of your posts. It's refreshing to have an intelligent discussion with someone of a differing opinion that hasn't resorted to personal attacks or sniping at one another.


    First off, thank you as well, it's been a pleasure.

    I'd never say NO filler is acceptable. I mean, for some of us, red cards are filler in any given pack. A 7-drop 5/5 blue flyer might be a bomb in limited even if it'll never see constructed play. I get that, and that's fine. But with these reprint sets, the cards we want, use, and/or need are already well known. Charging 7 dollars on a pack on MMA with the possibility of cracking a Skeletal Vampire is a slap in the face. It's becomes unconscionable at $20 a pack. When 2/3 of the rares are at that status, it still goes back to my point that they're either lying or stupid as it relates to not just the secondary market, but listening to their community. Yes, I get that magic Christmasland is a box will get you into Modern and that's absurd. But the other end of the spectrum isn't working, either, trickling down cards we need in dribs and drabs, while everything missed gets exponentially more expensive. Aggressive reprinting for needed cards was the entire concept behind this format, so why am I still going to SCG to get the singular printing of staple cards from 8 years ago?

    And this ties right into this other argument I hear a lot of, that Standard and Limited are their cash cows. My wife owns a store herself, and diversification is key there. Opening new revenue streams. I mean, if I'm pushing around an apple cart and somebody stops me and says, 'I'd buy, but you don't have bananas', you can be damn sure I have an apple and banana cart the next day. Modern is always looking for new players, and 'scaring' people away with the barrier to entry is flat stupid. At one point, I had 2 Commander Decks, 2 Modern decks, a Standard and Legacy deck in my bag every Friday. Just because I love Modern doesn't mean Wizards can't make money on me. Acting like we need to be herded to their cash cow format sounds like a bit of ineptitude on their part for not finding a way to properly monetize their other formats.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 8

    posted a message on This set is foolishly too expensive
    Quote from sealteamfive »

    Actually, I've gone back through a number of Wizards' posts through MaRo and others. I couldn't specifically find a post anywhere where Wizards said they specifically do not pay attention to the secondary market. On the contrary, I did find a post from Maro stating that the reason Goyf was a mythic was to preserve its value. While not specifically tied to the secondary market they do mention they didn't want to crash that cards value.

    I read through your portion on collectors, but I didn't really get the gist of it. I'm guessing that you say that card values only matter if you're actually buying or selling? If that's the case, it's sort of true, but sort of not. There is a psychological portion that also ties to the value of cards. My collection is pretty valuable and something that is an asset. If something catastrophic were to happen, I would liquidate it for some portion of its value. It wouldn't be my first alternative, but it's a financial source at my disposal if times get rough. Collectors are kind of an oddity all around. But they(we) do reasonably expect our collections to be worth what we paid for it - even if that value is as ethereal as card prices.

    So, if you really don't trust Wizards' to do right by their game, are you liquidating out of it? It seems to me that if you think things are going to go off a cliff, the smart move would be to pull out before things go bad.


    It was PAX East, where they previewed Theros and Modern Masters 2013. They had a Q&A panel, they were specifically asked about card choice in the set vs. secondary market pricing, their response was we don't concern ourselves with the secondary market. So whether the lopsidedness of MMA2 was stupidity or an about-face on that policy remains to be seen, but surely we can agree that the egregious lack of transparency on this issue leads to speculation that their motives are exactly as I said above - stupidity, or they're intentionally doing this to the community. The worst they can do is say nothing on the subject.

    That last sentence in the second paragraph REALLY irks me. What makes you think that you, as a collector, are in any way entitled to an expectation of ANY return close to what you paid for a product after you walk out of the store with it? It's paper. For a card game. I could understand if you felt that way if the paper was a treasury bond, but it's not true of cars, stocks, houses, or most any other commodity in this life. Also, and I can't believe I have to say this, you seem like a really intelligent cat, but Magic cards are NOT an investment! Not, with a big ol' N. You invest money into it with no expectation but the fun to have collected all of a set, finished a deck, played with your friends, made some new ones, nailed a cool trade, etc.

    To make matters worse, this has seriously spiraled downwards over the last 3-4 years. Players with sets of ABU duals saw their 'investment' almost double in price, and now feel they're entitled to not what they paid for it, but the doubling the market said it did. Legacy loses its tournament support, prices barely waffle, and so it goes. Congrats, y'all, you killed the format. But at least you have $300 Tundras to sit in your binder for a format you can't ever really play. On the other end of the spectrum, Modern, the format that's supposed to be immune to this toxicity the RL created, has watched prices rise while we keep getting 'wait for the next set' for every missed reprint for 4 years now. C'mon, man, I paid $8 for my first Snapcaster. There's no reason the guy next to me has to pay $50 to play at the same table so I can 'keep' that value, man, that's just greed.

    For your last point, yes, I did. I kept about 1500 cards, all Modern, and sold my collection of 10 years, some 50,000 cards, in February. The collection was valued at approx. 16k. Know what I got for it? 6,000. That's right, one-third. I kept everything in binders by set, ordered by collector number/color, no more than 4 copies of any given card. I took meticulous care of that collection. Some 9-12 complete sets. I wasn't in a bind, or hurting for cash. Commander hasn't been the same since Wizards stuck it's nose in it. I played with BFZ and I hated it. I was never going to be stupid enough to get into the dying format that is Legacy. So I said screw it, you can't take it with you when you die, let's cash out. Do something nice with the family. Breaking the chains of being a 'gotta catch them all' collector was probably the single most freeing thing I've ever done. I crack prize packs now and keep only what I think I can use. I just recently opened a pack of Oath and was more excited for the Pulse of Murasa than I was the foil Kozilek behind an Eldrazi Displacer. I bindered both of those for a wopping 5 minutes before someone offered stuff I actually wanted for them. No, I don't trust Wizards with the future of the game, so yeah, I put my money where my mout was and cashed out. I still love hanging with my friends and going to tournaments, but now I do it on my terms. WotC has to earn back my trust before I give them another red cent. My LGS, however, I'll still support them with entry, singles, and supplies. Might even draft here and there (I tried the EMA lottery last night, actually - a $15 Gamble and I won 4-0 with a peasant deck...just like every draft I've played for 5 sets now), but I've spent such a fortune on this game, I think it's long overdue I be shown some good will on the part of WotC.

    Give me a product with real value, and i don't mean EV, I mean stop stuffing reprint sets with filler trash and calling it a limited format, and I'll buy in. I want to pay Wizards, not some company that bought 1800 cases from them to flip to me for a profit for the few singles I need. Then they can have my money again.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 7

    posted a message on This set is foolishly too expensive
    Quote from sealteamfive »

    On Wizards sabotaging themselves and not knowing what they are doing, I respectfully disagree. They've managed to not only stay in business for over 20 years. They have managed to grow from essentially nothing into what is generally considered the best TCG in existence (arguable with Yu-Gi-Oh!). They have to balance several groups whose interests directly conflict with one another (collectors wanting rare and valuable cards, with high prices versus players who want everything cheap and accessible), grow the game, keep their retailers sustainable (major places for many to play the game), and keep their overlords (Hasbro) happy. We may not understand, like, or agree with the decisions they make but to think they are purposely screwing up their business model or giving the bird to those who purchase their game doesn't make sense. If that were the case, the game simply would stop growing, and eventually die. All evidence currently points to the direct opposite.


    Here is the only point I would have to respectfully disagree right back. The 'they managed to stay business...' bit has been an argument beaten to death. Quite honestly, it's patently false for several reasons. Chronicles, Combo Winter, Affinity, Cawblade, to a much lesser extent Fairies, 6th Ed. rules changes, 10th Ed. rules changes, etc. - they've come within striking distance of killing the game on a number of occasions. Be it good will, community, or turning a corner with a great set, WotC has been able to save itself more than once and rebuild the player base. One could see it as good job on their part for pulling it off, but the cynic in me says the community shouldn't have been put there in the first place. So no, I don't feel they deserve pats on the back for recovering from disastrous mistakes like those when they did the damage to themselves. So no, I can't say I 'trust their expertise', because evidence shows a terrible track record. When they're good, they're great, and when they're bad, they're really bad. Instead of striving for greatness, they've decided to balance these 'conflicting desires' you mentioned by settling for mediocrity. Nothing here is so great collectors get upset, nothing here is so great it justifies the price, nothing here is so reasonably priced it makes sense to draft, and nothing here is so good you can make a Legacy deck out of a box.

    There is one caveat to all of the above, though, and I've seen a few of your posts, so you may not appreciate the opinion, but - collectors are the only segment of these conflicting desires NO ONE has to appeal to. In order for Gaea's Cradle, for example, to maintain it's value, all WotC has to do is NOT print it. By virtue of it's exclusion in this set (yes, I'm aware of its status), the price rose on the value of the card. Somewhere along the line 'collectors' began feeling entitled to this imaginary number on paper. If you're holding the card, it's cardboard. If you're playing with the card, it's really good cardboard. If you're cube drafting it, it's still cardboard. If it's sitting in a binder to show off to people, or yourself, it's vanity. Only if you're actually buying, selling or trading it does the dollar value assigned to it become relevant. Yet somehow, my ability to get one by way of reprint falls second to a collector's desire to hang on to whatever the market price is when he wakes up that morning, on some trust or implied promise that someday when said collector is no longer loyal to the game, he can cash out and retire on it?

    If EV is entering into WotC's equations, then they're lying or stupid when they say they're blind to the secondary market. When they print a 2cc-creature that's a guaranteed staple 4-of at mythic, they're either lying or stupid. When they opt to not reprint a card despite player demand for it to satisfy a collector that isn't purchasing product, they're either lying or stupid. Lastly, when they're printing top-heavy lottery ticket sets, they're either lying or stupid.

    Magic has a vastly large player base. You presented the lack of the death of the game as 'evidence' that they know what they're doing. Action, not a lack of reaction, is the evidence I've based my opinions on. I guess it all comes down to how much you trust them with the future of the game. You do, I don't.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 6

    posted a message on This set is foolishly too expensive
    Some of these arguments here have gone so far to both sides of the bell curve it's just ridiculous. It's another summer, another Masters set, and another fail.

    WotC still suffers with these sets from some bizarre identity crisis where they can't decide who this product is for, and basically screw it up for everyone. The set has a lot of filler and ridiculous rarity upgrades for limited, but it's so expensive and in short supply to feed a high number of drafts. It's got too many newer cards and chaff to feel like cube style drafting, and cubes don't require expensive cards, just good ones. We've got a good number of Legacy staples, but with the reserved list plus what wasn't included, prices on everything else in Legacy just went up, offsetting any benefit from the increased availability. Cross-format staples were not only avoided, they specifically targeted the Modern banned list for reprints to show off the 'diversity' of Legacy or whatever, which is fine, but leaves an entire segment of the fastest-growing format in the 'this product isn't for you' category. For Commander players, a good chunk of the best Commander cards came in at Mythic, so not drafting this set and just taking advantage of reduced-price singles is probably the only saving grace of the entire set.

    Then you have all this talk about EV that pops up, and everyone wants to break out their Economics 101 textbook and dust it off. For everyone that thinks the packs cost too much, you're going to be right in 90% of cases (foil or Mythic lottery notwithstanding). To everyone that says a $10 pack of cards can't have a $20 EV without costing that much, you seem to be neglecting both equilibrium and averages. The way WotC has it set up now, they're packing 50 cent rares in with $80 mythics, and there's more of the former than the latter. It is not only possible, but probable that any given pack will not net you anywhere near the value you paid for it, which is why packs are notoriously a sucker's bet. Couple that with the fact that EV is not a concrete number. Prices on the cards in the set dip every time a Masters set releases. If you're going to say the EV on a pack is $7 for a $10 pack at release, at 2-3 weeks in that number can go to $4 or 5, depending on how many of the 'chase' cards were expensive based on rarity and not playability, and let's not forget that commons and uncommons usually take permanent reductions. By a month after release there's virtually no chance with these sets that you're going to crack a junk rare and have the rest of the cards make up the price tag on the pack. (This is even true of MM1, go crack a Skeletal Vampire, Lava Spike, and a Kitchen Finks, you're still nowhere near $20), so the pack become even MORE of a lottery. The short version of this conversation is EV is a shifting number that always shifts down, people need to stop holding it up on a pedestal to justify the insanely crappy card choices going into these sets, especially at the common/uncommon level.

    Lastly, since I mentioned card choice, I am solidly convinced WotC is trying to either sabotage themselves by flipping off the community or really is so inept as to not make proper choices based on response. I mean, Wrath of God over Damnation? People have been screaming for a Damnation reprint for 4 years or more at this point, what the hell is the holdup? This was a perfect opportunity. Wouldn't it have made more sense with what White is doing in this set to have included Ravages of War, and let black have Damnation? Snapcaster and Tarmogoyf are Legacy staples, but we needed Control Magic at rare and Argothian Enchantress at Mythic. Really? You're sure about that? Where the hell is Lotus Petal? I know the whole spiel, 'they gotta save something for the next set', but we've been saying that for years and the best they do is maybe trickle 1 or 2 while the other 30 we're asking for get more expensive every year. It's just plain dumb to trust this company anymore. They don't even seem to be looking to sell packs to us, they just want their product bought in bulk by SCG and let the secondary market have it's way with us.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 1

    posted a message on [EMA] Rarity Shifts
    Quote from Marquisd »
    I can't wrap my head around how WotC basically wants me to go find some third party and pay them $75 for a card made 15 years ago instead of paying them $19.99 directly to include it in a new Duel Deck. They literally allow a secondary market to not only have control over the flow and ebbs of their product, but actually USE it to base their reprint policy off of...that's got to be the dumbest business I've ever heard of, they literally make nothing off the secondary market once the rotation from Standard has occurred.


    Yep this exact statement is what baffles me. And yes I know all the reasons why and why not and it STILL puzzles me.


    It's because they need the secondary market to a) buy the product and b) run the tournaments I don't like it either but if you were to flood the market with reprints of expensive cards then a store's value sinks and they don't buy as much stock


    Tell that to Troll and Toad, for example...or anyone that invests in singles stock for CCG's that aren't magic. Almost every other one prints/reprints to demand, and if it was all doom and gloom like you're saying (again, back to my point, no proof as it has never been done by WotC before), then these other CCG's would be so unprofitable it wouldn't make sense to carry their product.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 6

    posted a message on [EMA] Rarity Shifts
    Quote from Lakanna »
    Whether the rewards justify the risks is really a moot point; by doing NOTHING, they take no risk at all, and continue to make tons of money. No change, no matter how beneficial to the players, is ever going to be a safer bet than what they are doing at the moment. I believe that this momentum is the same reason the RL continues to exist: there is no risk to them in keeping it, so no matter how much benefit they or the players would gain from breaking it, they choose to do nothing and take 0 risk.

    That doesn't mean it's the smart thing to do, or the right thing to do. It's the SAFE thing to do, sure, but it creates a frustrated community. I personally don't trust Wizards to be able to manage the future of their game: their long-term plan for formats seems to be "throw things at the wall and see what sticks." Their continued support of the RL is choking Legacy and Vintage out of existence. The Modern bannings and unbannings with no rhyme or reason just to "shake up the format" made many people afraid to buy in because they were afraid of their deck getting banned out of nowhere.

    Wizards seems to be competent at running Standard (Fetch + Battleland manabases notwithstanding) but they don't know what to do with older formats. They are trying and failing to be everything to everyone. MaRo has made the point many times that they try to juggle multiple priorities when doing reprints, and quite honestly, I don't believe that "protect the secondary market" should be one of those priorities. The secondary market is a market: it can adapt and handle itself without Wizards riding herd with their heavy-handed reprint philosophy. If they discount he "protect my value" voices, let the market sort itself out without their "help," and reprint the stuff that they can make money on in whatever quantities they believe they can sell, they make more money and players are able to afford more of the cards they want to play with. The game as a whole grows, which should be theri ultimate goal.


    I feel like this is exactly where Wizards has made the most mistakes: it feels like they're trying to wear 10 different hats while trying to convince us it's only one. You can't tell me EMA is not the latest in a long history of over-cautious limited run reprint sets that are more geared toward giving them a fast buck while protecting a secondary market they swear they have no stake in. I mean, sure, you can SAY that $10 packs with $20 EV will just rise to meet EV, but the reality is no different than prerelease hype - if these are printed to demand, the big shots like FoW go for a crazy stupid, expensive amount, then we get to see their impact once they're in the hands of the people, and the market corrects itself. And that's ignoring the fact that $10 boosters with $20 EV remain that way due to scarcity, because let's be honest with ourselves: a printed to demand product is not going to be able to break MSRP no matter whether it has Thoughtseize, Onslaught Fetches, Shocklands, or any other recent example of hotly desired, expensive cards in an unlimited set.

    Quite simply, anyone pointing to Chronicles as an example is doing it wrong. The lesson from that set is Wizards will cave to a vocal minority that treats the cards like stocks. The reprinted cards were scarce and in a bubble, not valuable because of necessity for play. Moreover, the same vocal minority can run with reckless abandon in serious gray-area buyouts to artificially raise prices on certain cards (Gaddock Teeg the most recent example), and Wizards will still bow to their shocking behavior over a much larger majority that simply want to play the game and potentially grow the business. How Hasbro has not stepped in on these stupid shenanigans yet and shut it down is beyond me. When I look at a self-regulating CCG like Pokemon, where reprints breed accessibility constantly and no card is ever over $12 and their digital front is basically free and serves as a gateway drug to their paper product, I can't fathom how WotC has made so many boneheaded decisions like these. I can't wrap my head around how WotC basically wants me to go find some third party and pay them $75 for a card made 15 years ago instead of paying them $19.99 directly to include it in a new Duel Deck. They literally allow a secondary market to not only have control over the flow and ebbs of their product, but actually USE it to base their reprint policy off of...that's got to be the dumbest business I've ever heard of, they literally make nothing off the secondary market once the rotation from Standard has occurred.

    Lastly, to wrap up my point, I think it's ridiculous to point to any level of intelligence, know-how, or market research WotC may or may not have done. No, they don't know better. Other companies in the CCG realm, especially lately, are proving that all the time. Second, there's no variable - the control has always been the safe bet, and WotC has never deviated one inch from that. Seriously, when was the last time there was a reprint set that actually crossed the line on EV per pack? It's never happened, ever. Sure, there are great buys out there, like M11, where you can find packs still hovering in the $6 or less range and crack quality Modern cards like Lightning Bolt, Mana Leak, the Titans, Baneslayer, Leylines, etc., but more often than not, taking a chance on any given pack is going to yield far less than you paid for it. You're never getting your money's worth, that's why it's always a sucker's bet. We've never had a set where the power level was on par with the price tag. As safe as WotC plays it, we never will. So everything said here is a lot of people making a lot of conjecture based on an Economics 101 course they took 10 years ago, with no proof or practical application to back it up.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    I prefer Duress because it's relevant in different MU's and it melds with our proactive strategy.

    Slaughter games seems narrow, but it does work when necessary especially against combo. Usually combo just proceeds to plan-B kill anyway but by then we should have the game in our favor.


    I respectfully disagree. I don't see the value in Duress at all. It ups the % we see discard spells, yes, but if given the option, I'd just rather silver-bullet the deck outright. With combo clawing for a foothold, there's plenty of reason to have it, but if everyone is as spooked by Nahiri as it sounds, use this to rip her out, no? Then Jeskai is a very winnable control match from 2 months ago.

    @TrappedUnderIce, I run 1 Finks main. Tron's numbers are low enough that I'm not going to try to jam 3 Fulminator's in there for a match that can be unwinnable even when you see them. Especially because there are very few matches besides Tron to bring them into. Grixis, Abzan Company, Burn, and Affinity basically laugh him off and keep going, unless they're getting shafted on lands, in which case we were likely in the driver's seat already.
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    This is where my board is currently at, with some explanation for card choice:



    So, I've been attacking my meta lately from multiple angles. Last night's Tuesday Night Modern had 28 people preparing for the GP, so I finally got a stress test for it, as I know how solid it is against Tier 1, but last night I fought nothing but 1.5's all the way to the end. 3-1 all told, lost to R/G Land Destruction (and it was my own fault). But here's what's been happening:

    Kitchen Finks - 1 in the main (maybe), 2 in the side. Primarily for red/control matchups. Pretty straight-forward choice. I hate Feed the Clan.
    Fulminator Mage - Tron, tron, tron.
    Anger of the Gods & Damnation - I'm on a 1/1 split because I'm usually bringing them into the same matches, and there are rare spots where the Damnation will outperform the Anger.
    Night of Souls' Betrayal - Abzan, Infect, Affinity, any tokens variants. It's a proven card. You can even make a good argument for bringing it into Abzan Company, as it forces the opponent to have Melira to go off.
    Slaughter Games - I typically bring this into Tron and Scapeshift. With Tron, I feel like we can win the match if we get Fulminator Mage to hamstring them a turn or two, and use this to keep them off Ugin. It's still a horrible match, but I'd rather Karns all day long over Ugin and Wurmcoil.
    Grafdigger's Cage / Jund Charm / Nihil Spellbomb - the graveyard strategies that pop up randomly require flexibility. Abzan falls apart to Grafdigger's, while Living End ignores it. I've been testing with this split, and it's shined. I can bring Jund Charm along with Anger into Elves for instant speed sweeps, I can go Jund Charm /Spellbomb into Living End, or any combination into Abzan Company. This way, I can also avoid giving away matches that can be silver-bulleted pretty readily, like Thopter Gifts.
    Imp's Mischief - Just because Grixis and other Visions-based decks aren't placing, doesn't mean that every stubborn blue mage and their grandmother isn't still trying to run it, and there is nothing worse than paring down their hand, only to have them gas right back up. I've been able to apply this spell to the mirror, as well, with great success. Throwing someone's Abrupt Decay back on their own Tarmogoyf...I'll pay 2 life for that all day long.
    Thrun, the Last Troll - He's back in my board and I doubt ever leaving again. The rise of Jeskai only furthers my reasoning. He's so damn difficult for them to deal with.
    Painful Truths and Ancient Grudge - Stock SB cards. I hate them both. I hate having to have them, I hate using them, and I hate casting them. But, I feel like they're a necessary evil. At least with Affinity on the downturn, I can feel safe going down to 1 Ancient Grudge.

    So, for example, last night I got into a really grindy match with Thopter Gifts. I'd scooped game 1 to an Iona, so in came Slaughter Games, Nihil Spellbomb, Grafdigger's and Jund Charm. Game 2 I inquisition, jam Lily, and go to work. Every attempt at breaking the attrition war with some graveyard trick met with fast hate. In game 3, he boarded out Iona. I jammed Lily early again, flipped into Slaughter Games naming Sword of the Meek, search his library and found he went into a control/combo route, so taking the Swords left him no win condition in the deck. This was a deck I never played against, and the existing board just plain buried it. So I'm feeling pretty good going into the weekend, but any suggestions are welcome.
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    Have you guys seen the SCG Open results from this past weekend? What's with the group-think? 4 Jund lists in the top 32, not a single K-Command in the main? Like, I'm all for diversifying strategies, but these 4 lists were practically carbon copies of each other - 3 Kalitas, 2 Seal, 1 Slaughter Pact, no K-Command. It's just weird. I feel like the identity of this deck is in it's flex slots. GDD, Huntmaster, Olivia, Kalitas, Finks...this is where we alter our decks to suit the meta we're going into. I don't get how the entire top 32 basically netdecked the whole 75 with virtually no variation.

    I'm also not sure it's optimal. I mean, flipping Kalitas off Bob sucks. Like, a lot. And he's legendary. 3 seems like a bit much. Also, going all-in on Kalitas means running Seal of Fire as the new flavor of the week? I mean, c'mon, it pumps Goyf and maybe pops an Eidolon, or narrowly gets value the turn Kalitas comes down. Worst case scenario, it's competing in your hand for Inquisition on turn 1 and a stream of 2-drop threats for the next several turns. I dunno, on paper it just looks cute to me. What do you guys think?
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 0

    posted a message on MTGSalvation Eternal Masters Prediction Contest - Winner: Zephyr_Scarlet!
    IN:

    Oath of Druids
    Sensei's Divining Top
    Brainstorm
    Counterspell
    Swords to Plowshares

    NOT IN:
    Young Pyromancer
    Karakas
    Rest In Peace
    Life From the Loam
    Infernal Tutor
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    Quote from Draugnim »
    Arlinn have underperformed a lot for me. There are very few scenarios where i've felt that she has helped me catch up. If i don't have a creature on board when she comes down she feels mediocre. Of course, if you have a 2drop that you can pump and push past blockers and then get to haste something next turn, or pump out wolves and +1/+1 trample goyf+ravine she is great. But most of those scenarios feel like win-more to me. I've never landed Arlinn and felt "wow, shes the reason i turned this game around". I feel that between Darkdwellers, Huntmaster, Olivia, Chandra and Kalitas there isn't much space left for Arlinn. There are very few situations where i would like to have Arlinn in play over any of the other five i listed.

    Chandra on the other hand is a beast as a 4cmc walker, shes in my board atm for all things UWx/URx and the midrange mirrors.


    I've been running Chandra, Pyromaster main for a year now, and I don't see me ever taking her out. She's an amazing top deck in the late game, pairs well with Liliana (and will likely cause a concede if they're on board together), and unless you're trying to come back from really far behind, she buries your opponent in painless card advantage while you slam threats they have to answer.

    I have to agree about Arlinn. I faced a mirror last week that ran her, and it was just abysmal for him. She was a late game topdeck with only 1 creature on his side of the board, and I basically could afford to ignore her for a turn while I strengthened by position. Grixis disrupts and removes the same way we do, as well, so having Arlinn on an empty hand and no presence feels terrible.
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    So, here's my list, I have a lot of questions for you guys about matches I've lost to in the past month:



    I've had a lot of great runs (got my byes for GP Charlotte going 6-1-1, beat burn in the final), but lately I'm getting frustrated because on my 3-1 nights, I'm losing to the same decks: the mirror, Infect, Grixis with Visions (my local meta is filthy with it).

    So, Grixis without Visions, or in games they don't see them, I can usually roll right over. If they gas up while we're both in topdecks, I'm in trouble. They can spot remove as well as we can, then Snapcaster for value we just don't have. I started running Imp's Mischief, and I've won games on the back of it, twice, but it's still a shaky matchup. I'm usually going -

    -2 Lightning Bolt, -1 Abrupt Decay for +1 Imp's Mischief, Thrun, and Painful Truths

    Infect, I don't even know where to begin. I always feel like I'm on my back foot from turn 1. Last Open here in Charlotte, I lost 2 rounds to it (1 to Michael Majors, so can't be too butthurt there). I thoughtseized in both games on turn 1. I took the worst pump spell in their hand, they killed me with the other one. They always have Apostle's Blessing when I attempt removal. In the extremely bizarre match recently, I went for Night of Souls' Betrayal, blanked to a topdeck Spell Pierce. I just don't get how to win that match, which I'm supposed to believe is favorable. Maybe I don't have enough practice against it.

    The mirror I think just comes down to who tops better, who can stick Bob, little things like that. Jund doesn't have a lot of flex slots, so differences are minute.

    Also, Kalitas vs. Tasigur...Tasigur has just been horrendous for me lately, is Kalitas better?
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 1

    posted a message on [Featured Thread -] WUR Delver
    Quote from CurdBros »
    We got a good one today. This one might be a game changer. What do you all think?




    I don't normally like vanilla creatures, but this one is definitely worth testing.


    It absolutely warrants testing. This one has big potential and not a lot of downside. The body can only be answered by direct kill spells like Path, the wall is also out of bolt range, the flip trigger is insane...I don't see how UR anything isn't going to at least try this out. I love it.
    Posted in: Developing Competitive (Modern)
  • 0

    posted a message on Shadows over Innistrad mechanics spoilers (plus changes to DFC rules)
    I would absolutely shocked if Thing in the Ice is not immediately making a home in Blue Moon/Delver variants in Modern. This card is amazing.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on The Modern Dilemma, a message to the MTGS Community and Wizards of the Coast
    Quote from MrM0nd4y »
    Let me put this forward to you, Monday. Say you are the manufacturer of a series of race cars. Your latest facelift of model X is due to launch this week. Stock has been manufactured, they're lined up in the factory ready to be picked up. Prior to product release you decide arbitrarily that model X is winning too many races on your tracks. You're going to ban the model before your next Grand Prix.


    This is assuming that the Twin ban had already been lined up by the time MMA was released. Remember that Modern Masters 2015 was announced in December of 2014 (which means that it had been completed long before that) and released on May 22 of 2015. They most certainly did not know that Twin was going to be banned in 2016 when they decided to put Twin in the set back in 2014 and they still very likely did not know that it was going to be banned when they released it in May. That's somewhere around eight months between when MMA was released and Twin was banned, which is more than enough time for things to change and cards needed to be banned.

    Implying that Wizards knew without a doubt in 2014 or May of 2015 that Twin was going to be banned in January of 2016 is ridiculous and calling this fraud is hyperbolic in the extreme.


    Perhaps, yes, but surely as reasonable people we can agree that there would be no harm, no foul, and reduce butthurt by some degree if, say, WotC did come to the conclusion on a Twin Ban maybe a month before the announcement, and maybe let us know at that time? See, bans and unbans, especially in Modern right now are being fielded as 'we don't like this for x, sorry for the players rolling with it, have a new deck by Friday or miss FNM lol'.

    Personally, I feel the same about spoiler season, but that's another topic for another day. Wizard's doesn't have to use these narrow time frames, they choose to. At this point, there have been enough bans that it feels malicious. They say they're blind to the secondary market, yet they insist that a staple, 4-of 2 drop HAS to be mythic. They wipe an entire archetype (Pod, Twin) without any warning/expectation it was coming to its players, and not even enough warning to get into a new deck. Just that's it, your deck is out. That's not okay, and that's not how you do business.

    Additionally, I refuse to believe in the age of 'tested with Modern in mind' that not one person ran Oath through its paces without trying it with Eye of Ugin and Eldrazi Temple. The synergy is so broken its format-warping, guaranteed to cause a ban on cards that were otherwise harmless utility, and just so happens to make a stifling 50% metashare deck out of one of the crappiest blocks in recent memory that just hit shelves? This stinks of something, but incompetence is not what comes to mind.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • 1

    posted a message on Current Modern Banlist Discussion (1/18/2016 update - Summer Bloom/Splinter Twin Banned)
    I think the state of Modern has gotten to the point where we need to accept that the format has re-warped itself far from the fun it was a prior to Khans of Tarkir. Now with the meta being so aggro-centric and the rise of eldrazi (pardon the pun), trimming the overly problematic cards after an annoying period of domination doesn't seem like enough of a measure at this point. Quite honestly, I think we should rip the band-aid and excise the most potentially and currently problematic cards while taking advantage of the the vacuum they create by unbanning a good number, as well. My thinking goes like this:

    Banned

    Eye of Ugin: Simultaneously removes the most 'unfair' part of the Eldrazi deck while removing the inevitability of RG Tron.
    Inkmoth Nexus: Balances Infect slightly while removing the secondary Affinity win-con.
    Eidolon of the Great Revel: Takes some of the inevitability out of Burn without crippling the deck.

    Unbanned
    Bloodbraid Elf: Never should have been on the list in the first place, great midrange comeback card.
    Jace, the Mind Sculptor: Proven time and again to *NOT* go in every blue deck, but a great addition to the ones he fits in, like Blue Moon. Not inherently broken by himself, and often a 4cc walker that gets bolted off the table after his first Brainstorm.
    Preordain: I think after beating that horse to death, we don't need to worry about Storm's consistency anymore. Without Twin, this card is far less dangerous.
    Dig Through Time: Got lumped in the same category (falsely) as Treasure Cruise. Testing has shown it's safe.
    Dread Return: No one has packed serious graveyard hate main or side in a very long time...in a format with Delve, Snap, and Grishoalbrand. Let's make it happen now.
    Ancestral Vision: It's been safe to come off this list for a very, very long time.

    Maybe then the format will evolve somewhat. While I disagree with the Twin banning in spirit, we're all probably better off with it gone. No more 'oops, I win', no more 'you can't tap out on 3', and no more 'can't be unbanned/created because of Twin'. So I left it be. I hate the concept of two-card auto-wins anyway, and that was just too easy.



    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • 0

    posted a message on Modern Super Friends?
    Honestly, I think the format may be too fast for a super friends build, but I could be really wrong. The other issue is the Oaths are basically a timewalk on the critical turn 3, where you should be dropping either removal, a wipe, or the ever-present 3cc walker Lili of the Veil. Between her, Ajani Vengeant, and Gideon Jura, very few other walkers have had the relevant power level to really affect the outcome/be relevant in a modern game.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
  • 2

    posted a message on How do you feel about the banning of Splinter Twin from Modern? (All Ban/Wizard Politics fall in this thread)
    Quote from cfusionpm »
    Quote from bocephus »
    Your words fall on deaf ears. I have tried multiple times to explain exactly what you are saying but those who refuse to understand the business model ..refuse to listen.

    The irony here is as thick as winter molasses, but I guess I don't need to repeat myself again about ignoring comments.

    One of the local LGS has a case devoted to Modern, one to Legacy/Vintage/ and one to Standard. The cards most sold are Modern cards. When you figure most LGS buy at 40%-50% of current value then sell for 90% or better of value its Modern singles are a gold mine for LGS, probably better then Standard.

    Statistical outlier, based on anecdotal evidence from a single source. But yeah, let's take this gospel as fact and assume that people are buying singles for a non-rotating format more than those in which new and relevant cards are introduced every three months with planned obsolescence after 18 months. I have no doubt they make money from singles. I have every doubt that somehow Modern represents the majority of singles sales across the board at all stores; especially when taking into account the number of locations which hold Modern events vs the number which hold Standard only.

    Thse that dont understand how much LGS make off Modern dont understand business as a whole. If the LGS is making money, so is Wotc. Its a partnership.

    Again, there's a logical disconnect here. How exactly does Wizards make money off an LGS's secondary market? Wizards makes money from LGSs through the purchasing of sealed product by the LGS. Modern does not move sealed product unless Wizards prints eternal-relevant cards into current sets. Therefore, the only way for Wizards to directly make money off Modern through the LGS is to print Modern staples in new sets or other sealed product for the LGS to buy. Unless you would like to explain otherwise. I spent much of my young adult life in retail management and am intimately familiar with product lines and profit margins. Your statement makes no sense with regards to Wizards making money off Modern singles and you have no evidence that Modern singles pull in the majority of money (enough to be statistically relevant) to single-handedly support an LGS to the point that reprinting staples would cause them to go out of business. Unless you are talking about a single, specific store, under specific circumstances, which do not represent LGSs as a whole. At which point, maybe they shouldn't have invested all that money in Modern staples. That's your theory for players right? Every investment is a risk? Why is it OK to pass that risk onto the player but not onto the LGS?


    I'm flatly convinced you can have an argument as thought out as yours, and as correct as yours, and as well-defended with facts, and still not have the counterpoint do much more than the equivalent of jamming a finger in each ear and yelling 'la-la-la-la'. It just doesn't matter to these people. They have their cards, they have their disposable cash where trade credit fails, and they don't see the benefit of a bunch of 'filthy casuals' stinking up their format and making it more popular. It doesn't matter that there is an alarming conflict of interest that the tournament holder and chief buyer of Wizard's product is the same company that sets the secondary market pricing virtually by itself, unchecked, and has shown in the past and present to take part in buyouts, price fixing, and speculative adjustments that in any other trade would be regulated heavily. There's no point in discussing the fact that any business following a model like the current standard would have cratered within their first year, or that the long term health of the game may be jeopardized by bleeding the existing fanbase dry at the cost of attracting new customers. You definitely should not mention the complete lack of sense that it makes that a secondary market is allowed to profit unchecked while the potential buyers of the product are left wondering why they're going through a middle man and not buying reprinted product directly from the company that created it. You can't ask these people why Wizard's would leave a big pile of money on the table by missing obvious reprints on purpose.

    You can't ask them any of that. They're not listening.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • 1

    posted a message on Current Modern Banlist Discussion (1/18/2016 update - Summer Bloom/Splinter Twin Banned)
    People ranting and raving all over the damn place are both completely justified, and completely wrong at the same time. The fact that WotC had the stones to take out the most (played, expensive, fun, diverse, take your pick) format's darling top-8er Splinter Twin is a bummer for anyone that owned it. Mercifully, every variant sleeves quite nicely into a (still tier 1) midrange deck. I don't think it's okay at all for these bans to have no 'real' reason to it. That's not okay...especially because Twin actually had good reasons to wipe out of the landscape.

    As diverse as the landscape is, one thing has always been true - What is your sideboard for affinity? Twin? Burn? You've always had to answer this question. There's never been a deck that didn't require you to slot specifically for these matches, with the short-list of the most time-tested answers to these decks. Are you in color for Abrupt Decay or Rending Volley? Better be one of them or you're hopeless against Twin. Are you on Ancient Grudge or Stony Silence? Same story. Because no matter how pants-on-head retarded your opponent is, there is going to be one time he end-steps Exarch on 3 and tops the Twin. Regardless of skill.

    So, while we're on that thought, the reason sb cards against Twin always had to be uncounterable is because they laughed off anything that wasn't. The same as the new boogeyman everyone is so worried about, Tron?

    Tron Killer
    2cc Artifact

    Lands cannot tap for more than 1 mana.

    What's the problem with this? Same problem with Twin - they're very sticky and don't like being unseated from their 'best in show' position. That card comes out, immediately Tron is on mainboard artifact destruction, call it a day.

    Truthfully, I just went to the Charlotte Open last Saturday. You want to know what that was like? It was awesome. This should encapsulate it:

    Round 2. vs. Grixis Twin, win 2-0. Beside me on the right is Grixis Twin mirror, and on my left is the same. I don't feel bad it's gone, I hated the oops, I win from day 1 of this format. But i also don't like that it wasn't done for the right reasons.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • 2

    posted a message on [[Official]] Modern Prices Discussion
    Where did all the promises of reprints go? Theros block came and went without an obvious Serum Visions reprint, Khans only gave us half of the fetches, now it looks like Zendikar is about to come and go without Goblin Guide, Enemy Fetches, or even an Inquisition of Kozilek...in a set that features a battle against him? This has gone beyond missing obvious chances, and is starting to feel like it's being done on purpose.
    Posted in: Modern
  • 5

    posted a message on Wizards Suspends 5 L3, 8 L2 and 1 L1 Judge from the Southeast
    Quote from Pollaski »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Pollaski »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Pollaski »
    It doesn't matter if you're being paid or not. If you elect to be a judge for Wizards events, you're agreeing to represent the company and uphold its image. If you're doing something counterproductive to their designs, they have every right in the world to disassociate themselves from you. It doesn't matter if leaks hurt sales or not- its THEIR call, not any of ours when this information gets released. And it doesn't matter if these are the only judges in an area or not- exclusivity doesn't give you an excuse to break the rules. If you want to be mad at someone for all the judges in a region being suspended, be mad at the judges for being selfish and foolish in their decision making, and creating this quandry. It's no different than when a star player gets a conduct-related suspension from his sports team- you blame the player for acting up, not the administration for doing what they had to do.


    No offense, but that's remarkably short-sighted, and as it seems is par for the course with anyone rallying around a corporate banner, oversimplifies the issue to a point where it doesn't seem like you understand what's wrong with this scandal. 'All the judges that did that are bad' is plain stupid. Some of the judges banned have clearly stated they had not even logged into the group or participated during the time of the leaks. Another was complicit in assisting Wizards to figure out what happened and got banned anyway. That's not good faith, trust, or respect. Taking it as 'well they said it hurt them and I believe it and they can do what they want' is basically a hall pass you're giving them that ignores any extenuating circumstances, and the published facts about what's happened since. Unless you genuinely haven't read the whole story (in which case you shouldn't be vocalizing your opinion anyway, you're ill-informed), there's no frame on this that makes WotC look sparkling white and clean - there's a huge gulf between appropriate response and what they did, which is why so many are up in arms. If it was all conspiracy theories and conjecture, you might be right in your blind trust. There's enough to this story, though, that just makes an opinion like yours sound painfully like the knee-jerk reactions with half the information that WotC is being accused of.

    (I'm sorry if I come off a little abrupt, but even someone wholeheartedly agreeing with Wizards' stance on this would have to admit there was overkill in here. The fact that you don't sounds like you don't know enough about the issue to have an opinion, let alone voice it publicly.)


    Your half-hearted, backhanded apology is not accepted. You have no right to tell me, or anyone else on these boards whether they have a right to post on any topic here or not, and how dare you for even entertaining the thought that you do. The fact that I have not read every single little post on reddit concerning the matter does not disqualify me from having my two cents. I have read this thread, I have read several articles on the matter, and I have read both of Wizards' official statements concerning the matter. And it's clear as day to me that WotC is in the right.

    See, what you fail to realize is that WotC isn't some grandfatherly benefactor entity who exists to make us happy. They are a business first, as they should be, and any business worth its salt would go through any measures it can to preserve its intellectual property. Furthermore, this was clearly not a one time deal- let's stop pretending that one morning Oath of the Gatewatch Spoilers showed up on Facebook, and then the next suspensions were handed down. This was ongoing over multiple sets, for months, even years, and to make things worse, this was being done by individuals that had earned some measure of trust from WotC in getting their judging certification. Whether or not their status as judges helped them obtain this information is irrelevant- they betrayed WotC's trust by gaining the information and then spreading it.

    "But... but... they didn't know!" Spare me. These aren't weekend casual players we're talking about here. These are hardened magic players, immersed in the game and culture enough to take a test to gain a leadership role within it. And part of that leadership role is knowing when something's wrong, and when to do the right thing. They clearly failed on this, and failed for several months, and now they're paying the consequences.

    "But... but... one even helped with the investigation!" I always take this with a grain of salt, especially when it concerns something that had been going on a long time. What were that person's motives? Were they legitimately upset over property being stolen (unlikely, or else they'd have reported this sooner). Likely it was an individual who was either about to be busted, and thus trying to save his hide, or was otherwise hoping his cooperation would get him ahead somewhere.

    This was never about WOTC looking "sparkling white and clean". WOTC was put in a situation where they had to be the bad guy, and they did what they had to do. You can't pull weeds and not expect to get a little muddy. Now some of these people will get appeals, and I'm sure a few will be overturned. That's fair. But in the end, this is their game, and their property. Protecting that is, and should be, the number one priority.


    You sound like a shill for the company at this point. WotC is without a doubt in the right...despite the horrible PR this created for them, this was the best solution...that's your take? Oh, and 'I take this part of the argument with a grain of salt' is not remotely objective, it's a complete bias. So, yeah, forgive me if entertaining commentaries such as these makes me sincerely doubt that you're informed. Quite the opposite, if your two cents is to completely doubt one half of the argument and accept WotC playing 'the bad guy' was their only viable solution to the issue, you either came into the issue with a bias or developed one from what you've read. Either way, it's not objective enough and zealotry on this board runs deep enough to leave you to your peace and not bother arguing the point further - your opinion can't be swayed.


    I'm not a shill, just someone who understands how the real world works, and ultimately, when push comes to shove, who's game this really is. Wizards was forced to make a decision on the issue, and that they went for what was right instead of what was PR friendly gained my respect.

    And casting serious doubts on the true motives of the "whistleblower" is objectivity in its finest. The bias lies in the people who swallow immediately that "he helped Wizards, so he should get a pass". True objectivity is realizing there's something far deeper than the surface there. Obviously I made some conjecture with my hypothesis to the reason, but I wouldn't be surprised if I was at least somewhat right on that.

    But look at where the true zealotry lies- the people bashing Wizards. If all parties were reinstated tomorrow, those who think wizards were in the right would simply shrug and move on. It's the other side that is in borderline conniptions on the matter.


    ...or it's the 'us vs. them' mentality you're displaying that has us in this mess in the first place. That culture of thought Wizards has created, fostered, and/or catered to not just in this PR nightmare, but every one like it over the past year.

    You're wrong. It isn't their game. They can't just take their ball and go home. It doesn't belong solely to the community, either. We can't enjoy the game if they're not making it. So how about a little respect for the fact that it's a symbiotic relationship where one can't live without the will of the other, and maybe this was a step in the wrong direction?

    EDIT: Also...this is how the real world works? I'm sorry, but this literally could not have ever happened anywhere in the 'real world'. There have been at least two lawyers in this thread alone that have explained exactly why this couldn't have happened in any real, damning way if not for the fact that this was basically an at-will temporary termination of volunteers. If they were employees, WotC would be looking at a lawsuit for the ham-fisted way this was handled, even if ALL parties were guilty, the proof is tenuous at best. So, please, spare me the condescension.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on Wizards Suspends 5 L3, 8 L2 and 1 L1 Judge from the Southeast
    Quote from Pollaski »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Pollaski »
    It doesn't matter if you're being paid or not. If you elect to be a judge for Wizards events, you're agreeing to represent the company and uphold its image. If you're doing something counterproductive to their designs, they have every right in the world to disassociate themselves from you. It doesn't matter if leaks hurt sales or not- its THEIR call, not any of ours when this information gets released. And it doesn't matter if these are the only judges in an area or not- exclusivity doesn't give you an excuse to break the rules. If you want to be mad at someone for all the judges in a region being suspended, be mad at the judges for being selfish and foolish in their decision making, and creating this quandry. It's no different than when a star player gets a conduct-related suspension from his sports team- you blame the player for acting up, not the administration for doing what they had to do.


    No offense, but that's remarkably short-sighted, and as it seems is par for the course with anyone rallying around a corporate banner, oversimplifies the issue to a point where it doesn't seem like you understand what's wrong with this scandal. 'All the judges that did that are bad' is plain stupid. Some of the judges banned have clearly stated they had not even logged into the group or participated during the time of the leaks. Another was complicit in assisting Wizards to figure out what happened and got banned anyway. That's not good faith, trust, or respect. Taking it as 'well they said it hurt them and I believe it and they can do what they want' is basically a hall pass you're giving them that ignores any extenuating circumstances, and the published facts about what's happened since. Unless you genuinely haven't read the whole story (in which case you shouldn't be vocalizing your opinion anyway, you're ill-informed), there's no frame on this that makes WotC look sparkling white and clean - there's a huge gulf between appropriate response and what they did, which is why so many are up in arms. If it was all conspiracy theories and conjecture, you might be right in your blind trust. There's enough to this story, though, that just makes an opinion like yours sound painfully like the knee-jerk reactions with half the information that WotC is being accused of.

    (I'm sorry if I come off a little abrupt, but even someone wholeheartedly agreeing with Wizards' stance on this would have to admit there was overkill in here. The fact that you don't sounds like you don't know enough about the issue to have an opinion, let alone voice it publicly.)


    Your half-hearted, backhanded apology is not accepted. You have no right to tell me, or anyone else on these boards whether they have a right to post on any topic here or not, and how dare you for even entertaining the thought that you do. The fact that I have not read every single little post on reddit concerning the matter does not disqualify me from having my two cents. I have read this thread, I have read several articles on the matter, and I have read both of Wizards' official statements concerning the matter. And it's clear as day to me that WotC is in the right.

    See, what you fail to realize is that WotC isn't some grandfatherly benefactor entity who exists to make us happy. They are a business first, as they should be, and any business worth its salt would go through any measures it can to preserve its intellectual property. Furthermore, this was clearly not a one time deal- let's stop pretending that one morning Oath of the Gatewatch Spoilers showed up on Facebook, and then the next suspensions were handed down. This was ongoing over multiple sets, for months, even years, and to make things worse, this was being done by individuals that had earned some measure of trust from WotC in getting their judging certification. Whether or not their status as judges helped them obtain this information is irrelevant- they betrayed WotC's trust by gaining the information and then spreading it.

    "But... but... they didn't know!" Spare me. These aren't weekend casual players we're talking about here. These are hardened magic players, immersed in the game and culture enough to take a test to gain a leadership role within it. And part of that leadership role is knowing when something's wrong, and when to do the right thing. They clearly failed on this, and failed for several months, and now they're paying the consequences.

    "But... but... one even helped with the investigation!" I always take this with a grain of salt, especially when it concerns something that had been going on a long time. What were that person's motives? Were they legitimately upset over property being stolen (unlikely, or else they'd have reported this sooner). Likely it was an individual who was either about to be busted, and thus trying to save his hide, or was otherwise hoping his cooperation would get him ahead somewhere.

    This was never about WOTC looking "sparkling white and clean". WOTC was put in a situation where they had to be the bad guy, and they did what they had to do. You can't pull weeds and not expect to get a little muddy. Now some of these people will get appeals, and I'm sure a few will be overturned. That's fair. But in the end, this is their game, and their property. Protecting that is, and should be, the number one priority.


    You sound like a shill for the company at this point. WotC is without a doubt in the right...despite the horrible PR this created for them, this was the best solution...that's your take? Oh, and 'I take this part of the argument with a grain of salt' is not remotely objective, it's a complete bias. So, yeah, forgive me if entertaining commentaries such as these makes me sincerely doubt that you're informed. Quite the opposite, if your two cents is to completely doubt one half of the argument and accept WotC playing 'the bad guy' was their only viable solution to the issue, you either came into the issue with a bias or developed one from what you've read. Either way, it's not objective enough and zealotry on this board runs deep enough to leave you to your peace and not bother arguing the point further - your opinion can't be swayed.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 4

    posted a message on [OGW] Huge Batch of Spoilers Including Basically All Oath Expeditions, SOI Duel Decks
    Expensive cards means the game is doing well: it means people want to buy staples to play.

    It's is rather amusing how people keep missing this very simple fact. Now obviously there is a threshold at which point prices become prohibitive but MTGS netdeckers don't get to pick when that threshold has been crossed.

    Everybody wants Wasteland, WotC gives us all a shot at an extra special printing of it (alongside some other great utility lands) and yet it's still not good enough because so many on here think WotC is actively trying to screw everyone unless they print enough copies of Wasteland to make it drop to 5 bucks.


    Or, you know, have it show up in one out every 2 boxes of product...are you trolling or serious? No one can adequately even explain what market these Expeditions are for, everyone I know had either sold every one they've come across or traded in literally dozens of eternal staples to get just one or two of them for bling purposes.

    Calling them a reprint is a tongue-in-cheek, almost laughable statement at best, and you have the audacity to look down on people complaining that the whole system is a lottery propping up an otherwise horrible set? Again, are you trolling or serious?
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 5

    posted a message on Wizards Suspends 5 L3, 8 L2 and 1 L1 Judge from the Southeast
    Quote from Pollaski »
    It doesn't matter if you're being paid or not. If you elect to be a judge for Wizards events, you're agreeing to represent the company and uphold its image. If you're doing something counterproductive to their designs, they have every right in the world to disassociate themselves from you. It doesn't matter if leaks hurt sales or not- its THEIR call, not any of ours when this information gets released. And it doesn't matter if these are the only judges in an area or not- exclusivity doesn't give you an excuse to break the rules. If you want to be mad at someone for all the judges in a region being suspended, be mad at the judges for being selfish and foolish in their decision making, and creating this quandry. It's no different than when a star player gets a conduct-related suspension from his sports team- you blame the player for acting up, not the administration for doing what they had to do.


    No offense, but that's remarkably short-sighted, and as it seems is par for the course with anyone rallying around a corporate banner, oversimplifies the issue to a point where it doesn't seem like you understand what's wrong with this scandal. 'All the judges that did that are bad' is plain stupid. Some of the judges banned have clearly stated they had not even logged into the group or participated during the time of the leaks. Another was complicit in assisting Wizards to figure out what happened and got banned anyway. That's not good faith, trust, or respect. Taking it as 'well they said it hurt them and I believe it and they can do what they want' is basically a hall pass you're giving them that ignores any extenuating circumstances, and the published facts about what's happened since. Unless you genuinely haven't read the whole story (in which case you shouldn't be vocalizing your opinion anyway, you're ill-informed), there's no frame on this that makes WotC look sparkling white and clean - there's a huge gulf between appropriate response and what they did, which is why so many are up in arms. If it was all conspiracy theories and conjecture, you might be right in your blind trust. There's enough to this story, though, that just makes an opinion like yours sound painfully like the knee-jerk reactions with half the information that WotC is being accused of.

    (I'm sorry if I come off a little abrupt, but even someone wholeheartedly agreeing with Wizards' stance on this would have to admit there was overkill in here. The fact that you don't sounds like you don't know enough about the issue to have an opinion, let alone voice it publicly.)
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on Wizards Suspends 5 L3, 8 L2 and 1 L1 Judge from the Southeast
    Quote from thememan »
    Quote from tuxedospoon »
    Quote from thememan »

    The punishment and suspensions aren't because they *saw* spoilers, or discussed them. The punishment is stemming from the fact that they knowingly received stolen information from WotC, over multiple occasions. The argument that they didn't know for certain that the information was stolen is frankly a moot point, because at some point any reasonable person would have realized that real cards were being leaked to them.

    Why would they ever use a personal Twitter account to showcase the leaked cards if they realized that the cards were real? That's the most stupid thing to do.


    Why does anybody show spoilers? They want to show people the neat stuff going about the internet right now. I don't particularly buy the argument that he wanted to discuss the merits of what would essentially be a fan-made card; it's rather silly to share something that you think is fake, because it is rather meaningless to do that. It serves no real purpose. Personally, my thinking is that he assumed the leaked Kozilek showed up elsewhere, and didn't realize that posting it to Twitter was actually going to be the first time the image was released to the wild. The notion that he thought it was fake, and was posting it for posterity reasons, is a fundamentally silly one. He had to have, at least in part, thought that it was possibly real enough to merit tweating it.


    And so the onus is on him? What sense does that make? Let's just articulate both ends of the spectrum, because neither one incites the knee-jerk reaction:

    1) He received an image that he half-heartedly believed may or may not be real. It did not come directly from a WotC employee, so the question lingers. Completely oblivious to the fact no one else has seen this image, he shares it on his personal account, as many of us have at one time or another to our friends. This is for the purpose of discussing it among fellow players. Wizards blows up his phone making threats of banning. He's complicit in assisting and did not know of the dangers at the time he posted. He gets banned anyway.

    2) He received the image knowing full well it was real, because he got the image from a WotC employee. Knowing full well no one else has seen this image, he puts his judge position at risk to post to his personal account for the lulz. This is for the purpose of discussing it among fellow players. Wizards blows up his phone making threats of banning. He's complicit in assisting and did not know of the dangers at the time he posted. He gets banned anyway.

    In either the case of being oblivious or genuinely malicious (neither of which is likely the case, though the truth likely leans more toward oblivious), you're saying that even though 'spoilers happen all the time', he was supposed to verify that the image, whether real or fake, had appeared nowhere else on the internet, to protect WotC's marketing interests? Maybe, just maybe I'd go along with that if was posted ANYWHERE that that's also judge's responsibility. If the image was obtained firsthand from a WotC employee, then yeah, I'd have some concerns there, as well. If he wasn't complicit in assisting once he realized the problem, then yeah, I'd have concerns. But obtaining it second hand a few weeks before spoiler season started anyway, not knowing it was his responsibility to act as internet police for WotC IP, and being complicit does not add up to a ban for him. It's an unfortunate thing for WotC, sure (I still disagree on that point, as well, but let's just give them that one), but ultimately the judge obtained information he didn't know was in breach, from a source within the company that did the breach, and he tried to help when he realized the mistake. You don't punish that behavior.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 5

    posted a message on Wizards Suspends 5 L3, 8 L2 and 1 L1 Judge from the Southeast
    Quote from HunterEste »

    Except theft has not occurred. I don't know where you're getting theft out of all this. No one has taken anything away from WOTC.


    People here that want to armchair-lawyer this whole debacle would claim IP theft, because WotC's marketing opportunities and attempts to frame the context and control the flow of information about OGW has been taken from them. However, that also rides under older, less reliable marketing models that don't really apply to the modern age. Digital-age spoilers of advanced product can be seen as early as alpha stages with many IP's and suffer no actual loss of hype. Quite the opposite, many companies are propped up on the buzz and hype and the promise of what's coming a year from now. Then you have these goofballs that protect the information until the last possible minute and blame crummy sales not on their own shortcomings, but the fact that people knew 15 cards in the set a whopping 3 weeks sooner than they planned on people knowing. If that's genuinely the case, they need to stop drinking their own Kool-Aid that tells them spoilers are the issue with their sales.

    That said, people coming into contact with and reposting images of leaked cards know damn well the risks involved with such a thing, even in a so-called private group. It only takes one blabbermouth or one white knight to get people into the kind of trouble we see here. The risks are not unknown, we've seen it happen before. What we haven't seen before is this draconian guilt by association nonsense where other judges (including a whistleblower) are suspended for being a part of the private group that leaked the information. This creates hostility, but these morons in Wizards' offices have never been one to shy away from absolutely horrible PR moves and leaving a general bad taste in the community's collective mouth.

    Quite honestly, from the way they've handled players, controversy, the formats, the secondary market, community relations, top-heavy set releases, and these leaks over the past year, it's long overdue for some real backlash. They deserve it for taking so much of the community for granted.

    As for the leakers, they knew the risks. So the punishment fits. Wizards' attention should now be put toward this PR nightmare they've created for themselves for the way they've handled the situation, and some internal cleanup. These judges got the information from somewhere, after all.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 3

    posted a message on [OGW] Huge Batch of Spoilers Including Basically All Oath Expeditions, SOI Duel Decks
    Quote from maddsurgeon79 »
    Quote from SephX »
    You're overanalyzing the wrong cat, sir. I have no expectations of information widely in advance...but I'll damn sure take advantage when I see it, largely because I don't agree with the policies WotC has adopted and fostered during spoilers. If SCG wasn't immediately price-setting any given walker, regardless of power level, at preorder of $30, I wouldn't care.


    Okay, but isn't that basically what Scatter to the Winds was? About three weeks before Battle for Zendikar went on sale, we were made aware that Scatter was replacing Dissolve and Ruinous Path was replacing Hero's Downfall. The writing was on the wall that they were watering down Standard. Some of the first official spoilers were the ones that showed how weak the set would be for Constructed play. And this is if you didn't already see this coming when WotC said they wouldn't be replacing Mystic Sage. So you knew what you wanted to know, and it didn't require leakers to get the information out there. You just had to pay attention.

    I'd very much love for spoilers to be wrapped in lore and spoiled through stories and all that fun stuff. Instead, they set it up for a trickle of 'set-sellers', and lately just dump the rest of the limited crap on us in one fell swoop, trying to sift through what feels like a larger and larger amount of fodder with each set, trying to weed out the gems and staple cards.

    Also, you mentioned making money, I didn't. I have no illusions that I'm ever getting anything out of Magic financially (not even what i put into it), so whether it's Mythic or Common, it's all just cardboard to me. What I want to be sure of is that when I have to throw my money at that cardboard, I'm not playing a friggin' lottery for 3-4 cards in the set that make any given pack worth opening. I'm sick and tired of having a playset of Helm of the Gods and at least 20 other rares in my binder that no one is ever going to want, and I'm really tired of the fact that it's happening more now than it was just a couple of years ago.


    That's opening any box of any set. I can't speak to specifically 3-4 years ago, as I wasn't paying much attention to that particular moment, but this hasn't really changed much throughout the history of magic. Opening packs of sealed product is a crapshoot. You don't have to throw your money away at cardboard. Don't, if you don't want to.

    It's kind of bizarre and weird that they do that still after all these years -- most of the games that used to use this model have reinvented themselves into Living Card Games, where you just buy whatever expansion and then you have those cards -- but the fact that Magic is the only major random-pack CCG left that isn't marketed specifically towards children is probably due to the fact that they have a rigorous and healthy Limited environment. All the frustration I have when opening prize packs is worth it when I sit down and play a draft and marvel at the fact that, from the perspective of a drafter, the exact opposite of what you're saying is true. There's a smaller and smaller amount of fodder in each passing set. Battle for Zendikar is a really solid draft experience. And that makes total sense from a business perspective, because the best way to keep people buying packs is to support a game format where opening them makes logical sense.

    I mean, it's like the old joke about the patient who says "doctor, it hurts when I do this." "Stop doing that." You can't stand at the counter paying money to play the lottery and then complain that you lost. If you don't like the lottery, stop playing. Let the collectors and the stores and the drafters do that for you, and just buy the singles you want from them.

    Don't open packs if you don't want to. Nobody's forcing you. You can still play Magic without buying booster boxes. I can't remember the last time I opened a pack of Magic outside of a draft that wasn't a prize pack or a gift or something.


    I'm sorry, but you just completely missed the point there. Like so much so I can't even recap it all. Yes, every pack is a risk. No, it was not always like that through Magic's history for as long as I've been playing (2004), unless you mean there's always junk rares, which is an understood, but the volume is way off. Can't agree with you that BFZ is fun to draft with (it was solved by the end of prerelease weekend, I have no idea what you're talking about), and I have no idea what you're saying that there's less draft fodder as of late. Go clean up a table or two after a draft. 99% of the murdered trees are being left behind. Or don't take my word for it - the LGS owner above your post, countless 'everything wrong with BFZ threads', the financial speculation articles that say it's bad and full of draft fodder, the upward trend toward top-heavy sets, etc.

    Lastly, the 'you don't have to buy it if you don't want to' implied I am buying it. I'm not. It's also about the dumbest defense to a complaint about playability distribution you can make. Voting with your wallet hurts the LGS first. It does not send a message to WotC, because SCG and CF are buying way more in one block from them than you and I will in our combined lifetimes. Seeing a decline in quality of a product I enjoy and spend money on and desiring a change isn't entitlement, it's feedback. Since the advent of 'big secondary market Magic', I honestly wonder if anyone there is listening to regular customers at all anymore.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 1

    posted a message on [OGW] Huge Batch of Spoilers Including Basically All Oath Expeditions, SOI Duel Decks
    Quote from maddsurgeon79 »
    Quote from SephX »
    As for a box EV, well, you're also missing 1 important detail. Yes, I can absolutely expect $80-90 in value out of a box. What you're leaving out is how much of that is imaginary money. I can say I have $30 of BFZ rares in my binder, but if that's 60 rares no one wants, who the hell am I trading those to? Take that as opposed to $30 of rares during RTR standard in my binder and all of a sudden I have no issue making trades for what I want. If the set is top-heavy, like BFZ or MM15, the ability to move the card and it's 'real-world value' isn't just diminished, it's non-existent. Saying it's a 50 cent rare is saying what it retails for if you want one, not what it's worth to anyone. Knowing what a set looks like, distribution-wise, is every bit as important as having a decent time to analyze and test with a new set.


    What you're describing is the risk of paying for an unopened box of magic cards. The rules of supply and demand suggest that you can only get about what you put into it, on average, unless you are well-informed and move quickly. There are so many other people with access to the same commodity that you better know (or at least have a good idea) what cards are going to rise and what cards are going to fall. This is a whole different ballgame with different sets, but the principles at work are relatively consistent.

    But you know this. Your statements show you're fully aware of the risks and rewards involved in opening sealed product. I wasn't being sarcastic when I asked what your metric was; it wasn't clear from your initial post.

    Now that you've explained, I can certainly understand that you want to be shrewd and exploit all the information possible. Anyone would. What I take issue with it the entitled tone. A week is plenty of time to analyze a set, make predictions based on constructed play, proxy some decks and test, and decide whether to invest. And unless you live somewhere where it's prohibitively expensive to ship boxes of Magic cards, you're not going to find yourself unable to buy the product if this is a hot one. So if your stance is "I need more than a week to decide whether I'm going to make my money back, and Wizards is not giving me enough information," it might be you expect a wee-bit too much. Furthermore, I'd suggest that if you got what you wanted and everyone had full access to this information a month or two in advance, the same market you want to exploit to save/make money would look quite different, because the timing of the information flow is one of the factors that you're taking into account.

    I can understand using whatever tools are available for your own personal interest, but "I work hard for my money" is inconsistent with "don't tell me not to look at spoilers, Wizards!" because the second part is a thing you made up. What the article did was criticize the leakers for ruining WotC's employees work. To suggest they're attacking you for being self-interested comes off as very defensive, and if you really understand the value of hard work, then surely you can see things from the perspective of someone at WotC whose work week was just ruined? Or is that person just a super-villain trying to pawn off a bunch of Barrage Tyrants?


    You're overanalyzing the wrong cat, sir. I have no expectations of information widely in advance...but I'll damn sure take advantage when I see it, largely because I don't agree with the policies WotC has adopted and fostered during spoilers. If SCG wasn't immediately price-setting any given walker, regardless of power level, at preorder of $30, I wouldn't care. If they would give a tiny bit of insight like, 'hey, we're slamming on the brakes with this set to slow power creep' ahead of time so that it's not such a shock, I wouldn't care. If it wasn't for one top-heavy set after another, I wouldn't care. Quite the opposite, actually, I'd very much love for spoilers to be wrapped in lore and spoiled through stories and all that fun stuff. Instead, they set it up for a trickle of 'set-sellers', and lately just dump the rest of the limited crap on us in one fell swoop, trying to sift through what feels like a larger and larger amount of fodder with each set, trying to weed out the gems and staple cards.

    Also, you mentioned making money, I didn't. I have no illusions that I'm ever getting anything out of Magic financially (not even what i put into it), so whether it's Mythic or Common, it's all just cardboard to me. What I want to be sure of is that when I have to throw my money at that cardboard, I'm not playing a friggin' lottery for 3-4 cards in the set that make any given pack worth opening. I'm sick and tired of having a playset of Helm of the Gods and at least 20 other rares in my binder that no one is ever going to want, and I'm really tired of the fact that it's happening more now than it was just a couple of years ago.

    This leak showed we have yet another lottery, this time for Legacy staples. It also showed that a good portion of the mythics are utter crap. The 'hard work' WotC seems to be doing is figuring out how to psychologically create an atmosphere where a crap set can still break record sales numbers. And you know what? They're succeeding.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 2

    posted a message on [OGW] Huge Batch of Spoilers Including Basically All Oath Expeditions, SOI Duel Decks
    Quote from maddsurgeon79 »
    Quote from SephX »
    Except you're missing the detail where the vast majority of these spoilers are posted anonymously because of the risk involved. I know for a fact one of the stores in my area had already heard a great deal about the rares in the set weeks AHEAD of the spoilers, and refused to say a word to anyone. That, while admirable, places a significant advantage on the producer (WotC), the distributor, and the LGS. Basically, everyone is well-informed if this set is crap or not, and I have basically the final week of spoilers to prepare myself for purchases through preorder or whatnot. I'm not just talking about singles here, either, they have plenty of inflated hysteria on their own, and sometimes a really appealing card just doesn't stick anywhere (Drana, I'm looking at you). I'm talking about preordering a box. There were no major leaks beyond the lands and expeditions going into spoiler week. Then the 'good stuff' started rolling out. By day 2, the bombs looked kinda meh. By Day 5, everyone in my LGS is like 'is it me or is this really dumbed down?' and by the full spoil, we knew they had botched this hotly anticipated return set.

    Quite honestly, if the article wants to say, 'Hey, we put a lot of work into this design, and you people looking at spoilers ruined it!', then I'd simply counter that I worked my behind off for the money I put into preordering a few boxes of your set. You broke my trust, so I'd rather see spoilers enough in advance to make an informed decision so you don't burn me again.

    "Unfair advantage" wasn't just bs, it was hypocrisy. If everyone but the customer knows what they'll be purchasing well ahead of time, who has the unfair advantage?


    By what metric are you getting burned if you pre-order a booster box you don't like? If you're buying a box the generate a profit, having leaks this far in advance doesn't help you at all; the value is going to be determined by the market prices for the singles, which is constantly changing. If that's honestly your concern, I would recommend taking a look at Saffron's Olive's financial analysis articles over on MtG Goldfish. He's got a knack for compiling a whole lot of information in an easily digested blog post and giving you an idea of whether you're going to make or lose money.

    If you're speaking of getting cards for Standard Constructed, you could be doing that in a more cost-effective manner. Look at the spoilers during spoiler season, do some legwork to figure out what you're going to play, then buy just those cards when you're released. That's what I do; the last time I bought a booster box was when Khans came out, because I was getting back into Standard and just wanted a critical mass of new cards to play with. But for the most part, I buy or trade for the rares and mythics I want, and pick up the commons and uncommons for free by rummaging in the free bin. If you're buying a booster box looking for enough Constructed playables to get your money's worth, you're burning yourself. Not always, but usually. Unless you're someone who does a lot of buying, selling, and trading of singles and have thus means to leverage the fluctuation in singles prices.

    I mean, if you just like the ritual of sitting down and opening packs and sorting cards, no one but you can put a price tag on that. But it really doesn't have to do with what's in the set. If you want some prior knowledge, I can help you out --- spoiler ahead -- a box of Oath of the Gatewatch contains a bunch of random cards that are mainly only relevant for limited play. Beyond that, you'll get some full-art basics, which might be a good place to hold some value in the long term, a couple rares and mythics that could be in high demand, but only one or two that carries a price tag of $20 or more, and there's a small but not insignificant chance that you'll get a chase foil that can be sold for a lot of money or traded for a lot of playables. That's typically the case for any unopened booster box, so I don't see what the big mystery is. What's in the box? Most likely $80 - $90 worth of Magic cards.

    So I'm just not buying the argument that the company releasing an entire list of everything in the set a week before the set is available for purchase is not enough advance information. I'm going to see The Force Awakens next week; is it logical for me to demand I get a chance to read the screenplay before I buy my ticket? Because I was certainly burned with The Phantom Menace, I'm understandably skeptical. I wish some forward-thinking rebel was brave enough to speak truth to power and show us that script... Rolleyes


    I'm sorry, but I just don't agree with that line of thinking at all, and especially not that ridiculous apples-to-oranges bit at the end. You don't have to read the script for a film to make informed decisions, read a review. The price of a ticket to a movie doesn't wildly fluctuate based on how good/bad it is. The fact you even made such a comparison really undermines what was otherwise a seemingly well-thought out point.

    What does change wildly with time, unlike ticket prices, is the prerelease hysteria that's not only become more prevalent as time has gone on, but leaves more losers than winners. 2-3 weeks of testing and grinding would have shown Drana to be a bad buy in the meta. Instead, she started as a dark horse ($7), swung to psychotic highs ($24) and back to normal ($8). How many sets back do you want to go with examples of that trend? And those examples have every bit as much to do with hype as they do with proper time for testing.

    As for a box EV, well, you're also missing 1 important detail. Yes, I can absolutely expect $80-90 in value out of a box. What you're leaving out is how much of that is imaginary money. I can say I have $30 of BFZ rares in my binder, but if that's 60 rares no one wants, who the hell am I trading those to? Take that as opposed to $30 of rares during RTR standard in my binder and all of a sudden I have no issue making trades for what I want. If the set is top-heavy, like BFZ or MM15, the ability to move the card and it's 'real-world value' isn't just diminished, it's non-existent. Saying it's a 50 cent rare is saying what it retails for if you want one, not what it's worth to anyone. Knowing what a set looks like, distribution-wise, is every bit as important as having a decent time to analyze and test with a new set.

    So yeah, I'll take the early spoiler every time and make better decisions.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 6

    posted a message on [OGW] Huge Batch of Spoilers Including Basically All Oath Expeditions, SOI Duel Decks
    Quote from skraz1265 »
    Quote from milo_bloom »
    Quote from pierrebai »
    While the story / marketing team at Wizards surely felt robbed of their plan for the Kozilek reveal, let's not deform reality: the unexplained new mana symbol on the leaked Kozilek generated way more buzz than they would have ever achieved with their plan. The thread discussing it got very large and people passionately dissected it and provided their own reasoning in favour of the various possibilities.

    The uncharted realm story? People speculate every week on them. I don't see much buzz outside of the flavour forum. Immediately explaining the new mana symbol? There would be a small thread about it, no more. It's a small evolution of colorless mana.

    In the end though, I find it hard to be moved by a company marketing plan being damaged.


    This is what kills me, they just let it go on, sticking to their current schedule. I can't help but think that a more dynamic marketing department would have seen all the discussion going on and moved up their plans to seize that energy and take it for themselves.

    The more I stew on this issue, the more that response from Trick Jarret annoys me. I can't help but think of the Coldsnap debacle. "Oh, we found it in a filing cabinet and polished it up" story. I not only believed it, but I also defended WOTC, over and over and over on the old official forums (where did those go? Oh, they shut them down, another brilliant marketing strategy Rolleyes ). I fought tooth and nail against the doubters, knowing in my heart that WOTC wouldn't make up a story like that, and they sure as heck did.

    Will somebody get in trouble for the leak? Yes. Is that understandable, yes.

    Does the community deserve to be "shamed" for enjoying and spreading the information? Go pound sand.


    I didn't see that article as shaming the community at all. There's been a little of that here on this forum, but not in the article itself. He was certainly shaming the person who leaked the cards, but I do not in any way see that as shaming the community at large and I'm having a little trouble understand why so many people seem to be taking it this way.

    The only thing I didn't like about Trip's article was the "unfair advantage" bit because it sounds like bs to me. Other than that it all seemed pretty kosher. Someone, somwhere, stole these cards and images from Wizards in one way or another to post them online. This person wasn't leaking dirty secrets Wizards was hiding from us, unethical things that they were caught doing, or uncovering some hidden conspiracy, they were just getting attention for themselves. Will I still start brewing and speculating about cards as we get them, no matter how we get them? Absolutely. Does that mean I have to applaud the people leaking or even approve at all what they're doing? Not at all.

    If this were an era where we didn't know anything about the set until it was on sale or if Wizards was hiding something about it for whatever reason, or if they actually tried some sort of legal action against people/sites that talk about the cards that get spoiled early, I might have a different opinion on this matter. As it stands, though, we always have the full set officially spoiled a week before the set goes on sale. Not only that, Wizards also crafts a spoiler season, which many people actually enjoy, and even give cards to prominent sites and people in the community to spoil to help bolster their views for a bit, which helps them make a profit and keep them doing what they're doing. At this point, people that spoil stuff early are just breaking the law to feed their own ego, and I don't think they should be congratulated or defended for that.


    Except you're missing the detail where the vast majority of these spoilers are posted anonymously because of the risk involved. I know for a fact one of the stores in my area had already heard a great deal about the rares in the set weeks AHEAD of the spoilers, and refused to say a word to anyone. That, while admirable, places a significant advantage on the producer (WotC), the distributor, and the LGS. Basically, everyone is well-informed if this set is crap or not, and I have basically the final week of spoilers to prepare myself for purchases through preorder or whatnot. I'm not just talking about singles here, either, they have plenty of inflated hysteria on their own, and sometimes a really appealing card just doesn't stick anywhere (Drana, I'm looking at you). I'm talking about preordering a box. There were no major leaks beyond the lands and expeditions going into spoiler week. Then the 'good stuff' started rolling out. By day 2, the bombs looked kinda meh. By Day 5, everyone in my LGS is like 'is it me or is this really dumbed down?' and by the full spoil, we knew they had botched this hotly anticipated return set.

    Quite honestly, if the article wants to say, 'Hey, we put a lot of work into this design, and you people looking at spoilers ruined it!', then I'd simply counter that I worked my behind off for the money I put into preordering a few boxes of your set. You broke my trust, so I'd rather see spoilers enough in advance to make an informed decision so you don't burn me again.

    "Unfair advantage" wasn't just bs, it was hypocrisy. If everyone but the customer knows what they'll be purchasing well ahead of time, who has the unfair advantage?
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Yatsufusa »

    Your example of being an exception to "not a customer of Modern Masters 2018" will hold true for more and more people as more and more Modern (Masters) products get printed. As more and more people obtain the cards for all the Modern decks they want, they will eventually be not interested in products catered to Modern.

    You say you'll continue to support standard even when playing Modern, but can you prove that your action is the rule, not the exception when majority of the player base have access to Modern? It's not easy to make a rotating format as diverse as a non-rotating format (this should be obvious), so without being more powerful than older formats, Standard will always be weaker - even during a "great" Standard period like Innistrad-Return to Ravnica, the format is still less diverse and weaker than Modern, because the natural size of the formats in comparison.

    What's more is that they cannot even assure that Standard can maintain the "great" standards. What happens when they make a mistake and Standard ends up being low-powered? People buy less products because Standard isn't interesting and since majority of the player base have access to Modern, they focus on that. Problem is, when this scenario happens further in the future when most players have Modern cards already, they don't need to spend more on Modern, so they don't spend as much on the game anymore. Standard may not be the cash cow we think it is, but it ultimately definitely makes more money than Modern products over in a long run.

    It's also easy to assume that people playing Modern will jump back to Standard when it gets interesting again and citing that you will do it yourself, but what assurance can you give that majority of the players will do that when it happens? With no assurance, it becomes a risky prospect. Yes, no risk no gain, but I can assure you when you work for a large company like Hasbro, you are a lot less inclined to take risks on behalf of the company (I think the reasons behind that are obvious).

    You say they should see Modern as a new product (or a split product) that has potential for "new product" in the future, stating the profits and diversity, but once again, you didn't raise the cost of "new product" for modern. I'm not talking about reprints (that's technically not new), I'm talking about new cards designed with the format in mind - that space is quite limited in reality. Yes, it's not conjecture but common sense to know that printing for Modern creates profits and possibly diversity, but it's also common sense to know Standard has less diversity by default, they can't keep producing "stellar" Standards, because for something to be considered good, there must be some comparison. If it keeps going from good to better to even better, the most likely culprit is power creep, because how many ways can Standard keep producing diversity that's different from what's already in Modern to render it interesting enough to the majority of players?

    Wizards have never controlled the secondary market (because they requires literally selling singles), they have only influenced it through reprints. This scenario is more of a case they don't want to "lower the secondary market" because they can't guarantee the quality of new products would be stellar, which means if they aren't, when combined with a lowered secondary market, it will actually hurt their bottom line. They're basically keeping a "costly secondary market" as an insurance against risk people will decide to contribute to their bottom line regardless of quality.

    Bluntly put: They can now do poorer design with less risk to loss to the bottom line because high secondary market prices are regulating money flow towards sealed products instead. They have not seen their bottom line not hit target enough to consider the need to put reprints to put a buffer in time while they figure out what is wrong with design that's causing new products to not meet bottom line profits. It's more of question on risk than profit.


    And this is where reprints can actually fix things in Standard. The way New World Order works is to completely forget how it used to work...when Magic was still rising in popularity, as opposed this 'year of stabilization' that seems to involve shrinking somehow.

    See, Counterspell was always Counterspell. Why? Because it did what blue wanted to do. Lightning Bolt, same story. Terror. Swords to Plowshares. Dark Ritual. Power Sink. They didn't try to reinvent the damn wheel every set. Some parts of Magic just worked right. Individual sets enhanced, worked around, or exemplified those traits, giving each color a very distinct identity, as opposed to the blurred lines we have now. (Mono Blue did just have an aggro deck not that long ago...) Modern is thrilling because it's power level and diversity is due to the absolute best of those examples.

    Every block in recent memory has given major contributions to Modern's landscape, save for the last 2 years. It's been dismal design that's made for a boring Standard. Design isn't drying up for Modern, the rift between power levels is so astronomically different now, only 1-2 cards at the top of their game have something to offer, and it rarely comes from the 'bomb' $45 mythic. Gideon is a house in Standard, but he offers Modern very, very little, if anything...and that's fine. The devil is in the details with pieces that make it into Modern. Look at Abrupt Decay, or Sphinx's Revelation from RTR. The utility kill spell that costs a hard Black and Green, and it's an all-star card in the format. In Standard, it was a $3 kill spell at one point while we were spoiled with good removal. The big bombs that move to Modern are usually utility, like Keranos, Jace AOT, Craterhoof Behemoth...oh, crap look at that...I didn't even mean to, and I used examples that shared a Standard with that Jace. Design lately is just crap. We can't even get the crummy 2nd-tier stuff we were using before Theros rotatated. No Lightning Strike or Doom Blade.

    Basically: Reprinting isn't as risky as failing to listen to the consumer. The secondary market put up a wall between Wizards and their customer base in the eternal formats. Couple that with inept design on the rotating format, you have a recipe for disaster. Both can be fixed by learning how Magic grew popular in the past with it's design, and using reprints from the past to prop it up.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Yatsufusa »
    Quote from SephX »
    Even if you are playing devil's advocate, your argument relies heavily on a lot of conjecture you stated as fact. What source do you have to back up WotC's dislike of an expanding Modern player base? Also, these arguments make it seem like reprinting 'solves' a customer, and they no longer buy product. It also makes it seem like there's a cap on new Modern players. Have you met a Magic player that was content with 1 deck all their life?

    Standard isn't the cash cow we think it is, either, it's just a model that's worked that way for a very long time. 2 years of lackluster, boring Standards is just as damaging to the game as the perpetually rising cost to enter Modern. The absolute last thing you want is the power rift between those two formats to become so wide that it becomes, "once you go Modern, you never go back'...it's on Wizards to provide an exciting Standard, not to turn Modern into a millionaires club. That just shooting themselves in both feet. Where they once had Standard and Limited both based around the same current product, they have the unique ability to grow Modern as a secondary revenue source that can be both tied directly to and have products separate from Standard blocks.

    Make no mistake about it - it doesn't water down one over the other, it's a good problem to have. It's the way they're handling it that's atrocious. Also, tying reprints more heavily into sets reduces design decay AND power creep. If Remand is the strongest countermagic Standard will have available in this block, then you design around that, support, etc, AT THAT THRESHOLD. The big problem is you get Expedition Lotteries where the enemy fetches should have been a given, and/or Goblin Guide, mix in some old and new Landfall creatures, etc...this should have been stupid easy to design, and instead you get a piss-poor set with 1-3 overpowered mythics so far above the rest of the food chain, it's ridiculous. The sets become top heavy, the format becomes centered around them, the rest of the cards pale in comparison, etc. And you get what we have now.


    First let me clarify, yes indeed that anything about WotC's motivation is purely conjecture, not fact - because marketing would obviously not allow them to put their motivations (which is driven that MTG is first and foremost a business than a game) on the forefront for us to use as fact.

    Let's put it this way - reprints don't solve the customer, but it does reduces the amount of product they will buy in the future. It's easy to respond with "All they have to do is provide good design at the appropriate power level equal to reprints to sell", but can you prove they can actually do it? Can you prove that it makes more money than top-heavy sets with even more lottery aspects stacked on it to make the new customers marketing has attracted spend more?

    All this dismissal of potential issues for the business in the long run as "good problems" is pretty much as good as conjectures on the assumption that Wizards can fix the problem because "it's on them" when it comes to arguing it should happen because players want it to.


    As much as I get what you're saying, you're still using a false premise. Why/How does reprinting for one format dictate what a customer buys in the future? I've been a Modern player for years, I still have a Standard deck for FNM. I'm still a consumer of Commander and Conspiracy product. Yes, after a while, I'll have what I need for Modern, and then Modern Masters 2018 isn't a product geared towards me. But I'm the exception, not the rule. I've been a good, loyal customer for years. If Wizards is offering a quality product in Standard, then I'm a buyer. My loyalty is 'rewarded' by the fact that I don't often need to replace cards in that one, single format...but that's the point of an eternal format. If you're going to create one, then you need to cultivate and build that market for new players, not me (although I'm a sucker for alt art & promos, so the occasional new art reprint would once again make me a buyer).

    Speaking of that loyalty, where the hell is it? I show up at every big tourney in my city, Game Day, FNM, I buy into 4 different formats and play a draft now and again. Player Rewards were awesome. Gateway promos were neat. Stupid little things like textless cards made me want to squeeze one more event in before the cutoff date.

    And I have to disagree with you. I don't think that you build up 1 product for years on end, then suddenly be able to split it in two, basically doubling your revenue streams, have a fanbase hungry for new product, and call that a bad problem. That's not conjecture, it's common sense. It'd be one thing if it somehow taxed or costed one over the other, but they've basically gone from vanilla to vanilla and chocolate, and everyone loves both flavors. How is it conjecture that new revenue streams are good thing for business?

    EDIT: I specifically did not address the question as to whether Wizards could actually make more money. The only thing I can say is they've never tried it. But I can't imagine that taking control back from the secondary market would somehow hurt their bottom line.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Yatsufusa »
    Quote from mASTERsELF »
    You seem really entrenched in your position. It is not a case of reprinting every eternal staple within a short period of time so the game collapses vs never reprinting eternal staples ever. Most people are just asking for more liberal reprints so the most expensive cards average $50 or so instead of hundreds of dollars (note this is just an example as some cards may be worth more obviously). Like any market it can't keep rising forever. Like housing, why do people always seem to think it is pretty much god given that prices will continually rise forever? People just want to be able to play legacy without needing to be part of the 1% or forgoing a downpayment on a house. Is that so difficult for you to understand? Also, didn't prices actually rise on many of the cards reprinted in the first Modern Masters? If so, what does that suggest? That the numbers of players entering the format grew perhaps? More people = More Money! The key then to avoiding reprints collapsing the format in a short period of time is reprinting staples in a set like Modern Masters (yet more liberally than Modern Masters 2, which largely sucked from what many people on this forum have been saying), but doing so in small batches until the price reaches something more reasonable on the secondary market and/or WOTC statistics show Modern (or whichever format the reprinted staples are in) no longer increasing in the number of players (or increasing at a more normal rate). Also, added benefits of reprinting staples for WOTC is zero design costs and guaranteed profits (WOTC knows a staple will sell). If they want to keep things unique and help maintain value of older cards WOTC could use new art on all reprinted staples. This would cost some money, but make collecting more enjoyable and desired. Once again the options are not only reprinting every eternal staple within a short period of time so the game collapses vs never reprinting eternal staples ever.


    The secondary market prices and people wanting to play non-rotating formats at lower costs are the easiest parts to understand, which is why I didn't even mention them directly in the post, instead stating why Wizards are so cautious about balancing the popularity of formats because of the game decay that happens if non-rotating formats become the most popular format of the game.

    Like I before said, the processes you described here (more people = more money) lasts longer in the Standard trap than in non-rotating formats without the threat of design decay to them.

    Also, it's easy to say "When the prices reach more reasonable and Modern is no longer increasing in number of players (or at a normal rate)", but in reality, as the first Modern Masters has shown, that when prices go down (they did initially), all it does is escalate the number of players drastically (causing the prices to spike back up). Wizards is scared by the first Modern Masters to do this even more liberally because they're afraid the backlash will be even greater (basically put, escalate the number of players in non-rotating formats even more), which to them, is not a good thing (because of the reasons in the earlier post).

    Basically put, a more liberal reprint doesn't actually decrease prices, because it will attract more attention to the format than Wizards would want. I'm saying Wizards doesn't want too much attention drawn to non-rotating formats, which is why they are so stingy with the reprints - that decision has nothing much to do with the Secondary Market from their point of view.

    Yes, I'm entrenched in this position because as a player I would want what you state to happen, but since I'm arguing from the view of the other side, I guess I have to be extra-stubborn to not be swayed by my own player's desires, so if I were to take both point of views, Wizards have overdone the "scaling down the power", because if they didn't, the occasional reprint of staples in Standard sets would just solve the problem somewhat without drawing attention to the format itself (nice example will be Theros Thoughtseize). It isn't happening now because the root problem is Standard is too "weak" that Modern Staples simply become "Absolute" Standard Staples as well, which draws too much attention as well.


    Even if you are playing devil's advocate, your argument relies heavily on a lot of conjecture you stated as fact. What source do you have to back up WotC's dislike of an expanding Modern player base? Also, these arguments make it seem like reprinting 'solves' a customer, and they no longer buy product. It also makes it seem like there's a cap on new Modern players. Have you met a Magic player that was content with 1 deck all their life?

    Standard isn't the cash cow we think it is, either, it's just a model that's worked that way for a very long time. 2 years of lackluster, boring Standards is just as damaging to the game as the perpetually rising cost to enter Modern. The absolute last thing you want is the power rift between those two formats to become so wide that it becomes, "once you go Modern, you never go back'...it's on Wizards to provide an exciting Standard, not to turn Modern into a millionaires club. That just shooting themselves in both feet. Where they once had Standard and Limited both based around the same current product, they have the unique ability to grow Modern as a secondary revenue source that can be both tied directly to and have products separate from Standard blocks.

    Make no mistake about it - it doesn't water down one over the other, it's a good problem to have. It's the way they're handling it that's atrocious. Also, tying reprints more heavily into sets reduces design decay AND power creep. If Remand is the strongest countermagic Standard will have available in this block, then you design around that, support, etc, AT THAT THRESHOLD. The big problem is you get Expedition Lotteries where the enemy fetches should have been a given, and/or Goblin Guide, mix in some old and new Landfall creatures, etc...this should have been stupid easy to design, and instead you get a piss-poor set with 1-3 overpowered mythics so far above the rest of the food chain, it's ridiculous. The sets become top heavy, the format becomes centered around them, the rest of the cards pale in comparison, etc. And you get what we have now.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 1

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Yatsufusa »
    Quote from Sirius_B »
    Advertisement and entry fees are what make sports, and now e-sports, a thriving business. And that alone could make eternal events a net success, if WotC wasn't stubborn on making money only a specific way that isn't sustainable in the long run and depends on the continued influx of middle-class teenagers with dispossable income who havent been burnt out by their business practices.


    That's because sports and e-sports have advantages TCGs don't have.

    Sports - The advertisements have been working to their advantage for ages, while I personally don't understand the culture around it well, it is true that running around will improve at least your physical stamina, if not health. On top of that, I think its safe to say historically it also works against e-Sports and TCGs, with people claiming that sitting around playing with a controller of cards makes you unhealthy (add on stereotypes and so on...), the effects of that is waning, but it still remains a fact that TCGs are way behind on this factor as an "advantage".

    e-Sports - Suffers and recovers from pretty much the same things TCG do, but they still have one advantage - ease of access. If your friends don't like a game you play, there's always online multiplayer stacked in the game. In MTG, you'll need to make the trip down to the LGS for games. For TCGs (traditional ones like MTG, for emphasis), the offline and online aspects are two separate entities. Hearthstone is digital-only, so it's more of under the e-sport category, while Pokemon at least attempts to link the online aspect together with the offline aspect with code cards in every booster, which is at least an effort to what Magic is currently at, literally the same game online/offline at twice the price (ironically which is what the Pokemon does with their mainstream video games, but even the online trade features help salvage that to an extent.)

    It's hard for TCGs to hype themselves to become the majority's approved (even e-sports are having some trouble with that) and by the nature of the game it's harder to get people to play TCGs than Video Games due to ease of access (pretty sure the video gaming community is tons larger than the TCG one, counting overlaps).

    I'm not defending WotC's practices (I agree they could still do a lot better), but just pointing out your suggestions aren't as easy as they seem, even for a company as big as Hasbro.


    With the way the Hearthstone community devours streaming content, it's embarrassing that WotC hasn't stepped it's game up. I've watched Magic Online deck techs, and it's just painful. The GUI is horrendous, the online presence is only maybe 1/10 of the playerbase (I'm probably being generous), and it's stagnant. No bright colors, no animations. It's as dull as it can be. With how much these other games are doing in the online space, the fact is that Wizards seems trapped in 2000, using antiquated practices, not recognizing their community, and not cultivating it properly. I mean...MaRo's twitter is (cryptically) more informative than their own website. Everything they touch online is a joke.

    Even the way spoiler season is handled is plain stupid. Announce a set, not show 1 damn card for it? Trickle information over months, and only at trade shows or conventions? Wait until the last 2 weeks before slowly giving the set away, framed so that initial buzz is high, then bait and switch a lousy, top-heavy set after the preorders have taken place?

    I agree with you that it's somewhat apples and oranges comparing this to esports, but in defense of Sirius_B, they seem trapped in the stone age compared to what everyone else is doing.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from investor3 »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from investor3 »
    So... one Magic card bought a whole crap load of Pokemon cards?

    That doesn't surprise me. Magic is a far superior game.

    One U.S. dollar can buy a crap ton of stuff in some third world country. See what I'm saying?


    I honestly can't tell if this is troll bait or not. I mean, if that's all you got from it, you either didn't read it all or didn't understand it.

    But I'll bite. Superior in whose eyes? Yours? Mine? Because I can go outside and round up 10 people that think i'm an idiot for buying 60 dollar pieces of cardboard. I also can't convince my 7 year old how superior that Gideon was to the pile of packs I handed her. Plus, she busted a $20 EX card. So no, I don't see what you're saying at all.


    Well those 60 dollar pieces of cardboard are 80 or 100 dollar pieces of cardboard when I sell them. So I think it's your 10 people who are really the idiots.

    And why are the cards worth so much? The market. Wizards doesn't decide how much they're worth, the people do.


    I mean...congrats? None of that has much of anything to do with what I was talking about in the OP. I was referring to the avenues other CCG's are opening up to attract their players and make them feel like they've gotten value from their dollar, as opposed to the litany of strange practices Wizard's has done to make the community feel a loss in value. Prize walls, watered-down Standard fodder, discontinued rewards programs, I mean just read the thread. This isn't a price discussion complaint, it's a value complaint.

    And to be clear, I play the game. When I said '10 people' I meant people outside the game have a hard time wrapping their brains around it unless you equate it to sports cards, and even that's kind of an old-timey reference at this point. So while you're celebrating your $20 margin gain, to those people what we're doing is a silly/foreign concept. Like all collectible hobbies, I imagine.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 4

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from investor3 »
    So... one Magic card bought a whole crap load of Pokemon cards?

    That doesn't surprise me. Magic is a far superior game.

    One U.S. dollar can buy a crap ton of stuff in some third world country. See what I'm saying?


    I honestly can't tell if this is troll bait or not. I mean, if that's all you got from it, you either didn't read it all or didn't understand it.

    But I'll bite. Superior in whose eyes? Yours? Mine? Because I can go outside and round up 10 people that think i'm an idiot for buying 60 dollar pieces of cardboard. I also can't convince my 7 year old how superior that Gideon was to the pile of packs I handed her. Plus, she busted a $20 EX card. So no, I don't see what you're saying at all.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 1

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from joedude5 »
    There is an simple (but unfortunate) answer for why.

    WotC makes most of its money off of two formats, Standard and Limited. Limited requires fresh packs and Standard requires a quickly rotating collection of current cards (from fresh packs). From a corporate point of view, this is all that matters, as it is what makes the most money (WotC has not been a game for the players for a long, long time now, the people with the real power there are all pointy-haired bosses & accountants).

    Modern, Vintage and Legacy make WotC almost no new money, so they do as little as possible to support it. Sure they offer pro tours, etc. with them, but that support is less and less every year, and its just enough to keep interest in the overall game. There is absolutely no incentive to add any additional support or a large & cheap influx of cards, because anything they do could (and would) steal away from Standard or Limited play (and ultimately profit).

    Imagine an environment where Modern/Vinatge/Legacy decks average $300 or less and those tourneys are filled with two or three times the amount of normal players that attend them now. Sure the exposure & support for these formats would grow, but all these cards being used were sold long ago, and make absolutely nothing for WotC now. Even if the did support it with a bunch of new cards, because the formats do not rotate, once people have a good base of 1-4 decks they tend to stop buying additional cards. Or worse they only new a few new cards here and there to fill out their current decks. Either way they can continue playing in one of the formats with a limited amount of additional funds for as long as they like. So any way you look at it, there is no way for WotC to make as much money as pushing Standard and Limited does (which is why they don't).

    Don't get me wrong, I would LOVE for a proper Modern Masters or Vintage/Legacy Masters set with nothing but quality cards to lower the prices overall (where an average high card would be $20-25 at max.), but it will never happen. Standard and Limited would have to be... abandoned for that to happen and people (however much they hate it) support those formats as they have to if they want to participate in fairly regular play.

    It does suck, I will fully agree with that. As someone who loves to build lots of decks, I hate that there are so many cards I would like to build around, but will not buy due to the insane costs.

    I wish there was a way for them to make money (hey why not), yet still have easily accessible cards for everyone. I'd also like to win the lotto, but that hasn't happened so far... Smile


    To be honest, I really think this is yet another myth we're accepting as truth. Look, I've seen in the major LGS's I've played with (I've bounced around a few major cities in the past decade) new players coming and going, but the old guard does it, too. Hell, there's 2 guys at our LGS that sell off their pieces and disappear from the game for months while dealing with real-life stuff and suddenly come back and buy into Commander, Standard, Modern, or all 3. Some of us don't let the 'keep it and hold it forever so it gains imaginary value' mantra control us, so they're constantly rebuilding their decks.

    So, you have new players, old players buying back in. The market is there if the product is solid. Also, this argument about 'Standard and Limited pays their bills' doesn't hold water for other reasons. Limited, especially lately, is a very hard sell in some regions, like mine here in Charlotte. Some LGS's do better with it, most don't. I can't stand limited, personally, but that's more to do with crap-quality sets to draft with. You offer me M11 draft and I'm in, BFZ...not so much. Standard is in a shifting period as we go to the new block structure, and I've seen more than a few people kinda gunshy about it. They're sitting on their current deck because they can't justify $45 Gideons and $80 Jaces without knowing how fast and how hard the prices tank in this new rotation cycle.

    Also, Modern is not only attracting new players all the time, it's getting new cards. Eternal does not mean buy a deck and never give Wizards a dime ever again. Wizards is using that model, not the players. We're shelling out cash to LGS's, Ebay, Troll and Toad, SCG, and about a billion others for cards that haven't been reprinted in years. That's on Wizard's, not us. It used to be that your staples like Counterspell, Lightning Bolt, and Dark Ritual were reprinted every set. New artwork for the people that have theirs, and easily accessible for those that don't. We can't even get a full set of utility staples in a block anymore (ie. no practical graveyard hate in Standard, no Doom Blade-esque cards, no 3 for 2 red instant).

    So maybe the problem isn't the cash cow everyone thinks Standard and Limited are, maybe the issue is the New World Order was a catastrophe of design - it's inelegant, it concentrates value into upper rarities, it leaves a lot of dead trees on a table after draft is over, and it makes everything feel watered down. Eternal players don't need what they have to give.

    Let me just throw this out there - Pernicious Deed at Mythic in Conspiracy...was anyone crying? Did it bring Magic to its knees? What if it was Wasteland? Force of Will? Crucible of Worlds? City of Traitors? At what point do the reprints 'kill magic'? When is a set 'too good' that it screws everything up? On the other side of the coin, if those cards were in there, would you and I still be cracking packs? Pretty sure the answer is yes.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 1

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Fall »
    The defense that they had to "save some stuff for MM3" is one that has always annoyed me. For one thing, MM2 already had the pre-Innistrad cutoff so there was already plenty saved for MM3 by default. But for another thing, MM3 isn't the set they were trying to sell us, MM2 was. The ONLY worthwhile common/uncommon was Remand. If you're feeling generous you could name Expedition Map or Lightning Bolt but those won't save a pack from failing. I'm not even advocating "going full Yu-Gi-Oh!" Nobody's saying reprint Tarmogoyf at uncommon, and I already said the set had good stuff at the highest bands. Distribution in the other bands was the issue.


    But that's also part of the argument I was making to begin with. We've been drinking this Kool-Aid about how the market can't handle this and the LGS's can't handle that...and there are 2 CCG's doing those exact same things others on here swear can't be done. Their game isn't dying, it's thriving. There's been a recent resurgence of interest in the Pokemon CCG, and while some of us might regard Yu-Gi-Oh players as 'weird', they're certainly not underground. These games are taking up more shelf space at your local Wal Mart than Magic does most of the time.

    Would I say we can't have Tarmagoyf at uncommon? Yes, I'd agree that's a bit much. Rare? Part of a special 'Modern Event Deck'...well, yeah. Having the damn card as a 4-of has been necessary since the beginning of the Modern format for 90% of decks running green, so why are we cutting off the player base with this ridiculous artificial price barrier?

    You know what happens to $100 cards in the other CCG's? People buy them up early, then they get reprinted in tins a few months later, everyone gets the overpriced card they wanted, everyone's happy. The reprint is at like $5, the original is still $15-20. This whole concept of letting LGS's charge a forever-increasing premium on a card because it goes without meeting reprint demand year after year is ridiculous. I always knew that, but now I'm starting to learn that this has only become the status quo with THIS game.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 3

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Quote from Fall »
    I was kinda gearing up to argue against you for comparing a extremely small, casual example of Pokemon against the entirety of Magic, but to be honest I don't have as much fight in me as I thought. I gotta agree, WotC has been a bit terrible lately.

    I'm an avid collector of the game. Playing since Masques Block, I have every expansion since Arabian Nights (Beta's kind-of a long-term project...) and every promo - up to a point. A few years ago, I dropped out of competitive Magic to focus on collecting, and played Commander and draft exclusively. I'm a completionist - I want one copy of everything.

    Then Force of Will hit. WotC actively printed a hyper-rare, hyper desirable card that can't be had for less than $600. Power 9 is one thing; this was a brand-new, REPRINT card that goes for AAA pricing, well beyond what I could justify. It was soon followed by Elesh Norn. Since then, Judge promos have started out at around $100 when it used to be $30 and few stray much lower. After much agonising, I decided to not go for Judge promos. Better to have none than a few with loads of gaps I could never fill.

    Then Modern Masters hit. MM1 wasn't too bad, but MM2 values were so woefully skewed towards high-value mythics that, again, I couldn't justify third copies of 'Goyf, Bob when their prices weren't being affected at all. So I skipped MM2 and, for good measure, broke up my part-complete MM1. That's fine, they were reprint sets, even though I had every core set I convinced myself my collection could survive.

    Then Khans hit. Forty prerelease promos. Alt-art precon foils. I dropped out of collecting promos entirely.

    Then Zendikar. Not only was EVERY rare and mythic available as a promo (and as an EDH player, bling is important to me), making collecting the regular set kinda pathetic, but the Expedition cards straddle the line between actual set and promo. And those prices are beyond mentioning.

    As it stands WotC have killed my interest in collecting their game by making it nightmarishly difficult, through the sheer number of promos, the engineered prices of the higher-end ones, and the ineffective reprinting of high-demand old cards. I've capped it at Khans, the final old-style block.


    Wow, dude. I could have written your post. I'm a psychotic completionist with a special fancy for promos. I feel your pain, man. I opted out of Judge Foils for the same reasons, then Khans broke my heart, and Zendikar can get bent. I still love my FNM cards and MPR's, Gateway, older prereleases and launch cards, so I'm refocusing myself on filling in those missing holes.

    But yeah, I thought I'd be alone in complaining about it, which is why I didn't mention it. I'm actually really annoyed by their new stance on promos. There's no alternate artwork, they're literally stamping a regular foil with a date for every rare in the set? Screw that. Now there's even less desire to play in store events like prereleases and launch weekend. At least I have Game Day, for now...
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 2

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Dang, sir. I knew Wizards did a horrible job with some of their international markets, but I had no idea it was that bad. Thanks for sharing that perspective.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 6

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    It's kinda depressing. I even checked out the tournament scene for that Pokemon CCG. There were like 6 'for beginners' threads, and every one of them said 'just go buy 4 copies of this theme deck, you'll have a playset of almost every staple card you need'. I was blown away. You mean I'm giving my money to the company that makes the product and not some 3rd party that tells me to buy singles at a rate that goes up based on whether the card saw play last Saturday or not? AND I can use them online, too?

    If you listen to most people in the 'Price Discussion' threads on here, you'd hear a model like this would destroy the game and the company would go out of business.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 26

    posted a message on The current state of the game
    Sometimes, being in the thick of the tournament scene make you get blinders to the rest of the world going on around you. So tonight I just got a real eye-opener. This might run a little long, sorry if I rant.

    My daughter is 7, and she's really shown an interest in playing games with me. After months of telling her she needed better math skills to play the Pokemon TCG, she progressed enough for me to stab at it. I picked up a cheap two-person set. She picked up on the rules right away (I haven't played it since 2001), and most important, she really enjoyed spending time with me.

    I went to my LGS tonight for FNM. I busted my prize packs, and there's a Gideon I didn't need. I traded it in and grabbed a bunch of Pokemon packs for my daughter. Inside the pack was a code. I went home, turned on Pokemon Online, put in the code, she got an online pack to go with her real one. She also got a theme deck, a bunch of rares, and 5 packs to get her started. The game moved flawlessly and it has an attractive GUI.

    That one Gideon bought my daughter 4 packs of real cards, 4 packs of Online cards. Plus the 5 packs and the theme deck she got free. Wizards wants me to buy my cards twice, in two secondary markets they don't control. They attract new players through a poorly built Steam game that only sorta-kinda emulates real Magic. Players get there and find the best decks in the room are hundreds of dollars (God forbid they come on Modern night). Your store determines the prize support ranging from only Top 8 to everyone gets a pack, to store credit. Wizards is kind enough to hook you up with 1 foil for Top 4 of an uncommon that may or may not see play in the format it's in. High-demand reprints like Modern Masters are printed in low supply and mixed with a lot of chaff no one ever asked for.

    I'm not saying Magic is bad or Wizards is trying to kill the game, nothing like that. I just haven't been to any big-box store lately and not seen/heard of every other CCG in the world putting out tins of in-demand reprints, or finding new ways to add value in the online space. While these games have been trying to claw their way into a crowded market over the years, this is what Wizards gave us:

    - Discontinued Magic Player Rewards
    - Switched to an MTGO client every beta tester said was not up to snuff
    - Started printing low-cost staples at mythic (Voice, Warden, etc.)
    - Discontinued Gateway promos/league
    - Let Legacy die rather than abolish a foolish promise
    - A 3-year trend of watering down the standard pool, making sets that are top-heavy with almost all value in 2-4 mythics
    - Released not one, but 2 Modern Masters sets with dramatically reduced availability and a mixed-bag of needed reprints vs. 3/4 chaff
    - Let SCG run willy-nilly as the price-setter of the secondary market, driving up pricing through buy-outs and generally harming the ability to attract new people to formats
    - Removed mythic Pre-Release foils (finally going back on this...by turning it into a lottery)

    I've complained about some of these topics before, but it didn't leave such a bad taste in my mouth until now. Taking a step back made me realize at some point after I started loving Magic, Magic stopped loving me. I have to pay for every little thing I want to do with their game, and the pricing is absurd. I used to get all sorts of rewards and thanks for playing, and 'get psyched for the next set, here's the pre-release foil bomb!' and packs felt worth opening. Now I take 5 prize packs and leave 50 cards on the table for anyone who wants it, and throw the rest in a binder with the other 30-40 cards I've cracked that no one wants.

    So, rant over. I have my decks for the format I play in, maybe I'll just start playing for store credit and add to my daughter's new collection.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • 0

    posted a message on Jund
    Hello all. With the rise of aggro and burn, I'm thinking of running this version at a local tournament:



    I'm really looking for insight into my sideboard. From what I know, the meta around the tournament is big in burn, scapeshift, zoo and there have been a few more GR Tron decks lately. I think this sideboard can cover a pretty open meta but I'm definitely looking for insight (yes, I know, there aren't any cards here that help against GR tron, but, honestly, I firmly believe that, even after sideboarding, that matchup is just abysmal).

    Also, instead of running one of each basic, should I move towards double swamp or double forest?

    Thanks!


    I have double swamp and 1 forest in mine. I've never wanted to fetch a mountain, ever.

    As for your board, I hate Feed the Clan. The matches you want it in, it's hard to get serious value with the Ferocious trigger. I'd sooner see that be Finks 3. I can't stand Olivia anymore. The same match you bring in Damnation, you're probably bringing in Anger. Double red and double black can be taxing. I'd just be on 2 anger. The room you save can be Fulminator Mage, which I just feel is a must for any Tron match, even the 'unwinnable' ones, you have to try. Everything else looks pretty well rounded, although I really doubt you need Shatterstorm. Affinity was already easy, 2 Anger and Ancient Grudge off the side just crushes them.
    Posted in: Modern Archives - Proven
  • 1

    posted a message on Reprinting reserved list cards.
    I got what I wanted, and then you know what happened? I stopped giving a crap about magic.
    I wasn't the only one. Scores of players dropped magic. Junk bins of magic piled up.


    I stopped playing and collecting a short while after Mirage. One of those reasons was I was tired of buying crap power level cards while everyone else that played and collected 6 months before I started had their Power 9 and duals. I couldn't compete so I gave up until basically Time Spiral. Its also the reason I don't play Legacy or Vintage. I don't have the power cards to compete and I'm not going to spend thousands of dollars to do so. That format is dead to me. Unless Wizards does something that format will shrink (in Paper) until there are none left to play it. There has to be a happy medium somewhere. With what is happening now, I don't see those formats making it another 5 years at this rate. A balance needs to be maintained between playability and collectibility imho. It seems it is leaning FAR towards collectibility right now. Just my opinion.


    I think that's pretty much it right there. Since WotC seems to care more about how SCG is doing and not their own player base, SCG basically ran the market and monopolized the secondary market pricing structure. They pushed up the value of ABU duals, milked the Legacy format for whatever last droplets of cash could be squeezed, and pulled the rug out from under the format. With Modern once being affordable and now costing as much as Legacy to enter, they're just doing it again.

    WotC needs to get aggressive about reprints. It's their damn game, they should take it back. As far as I'm concerned, from a business perspective, reprints put money in their pockets from pack sales, makes players happy, and grows their formats. Letting the secondary market explode like this and starving the would-be players and scaring them off formats is detrimental to the health of the game. If even one person looks at getting into a format that can be reprinted to demand en masse and says 'it's too expensive, that format is dead to me', then they have failed to grow their business in favor of the secondary market.

    I mean, seriously...would anyone really complain if 1 block every other year was a re-release? Khans-Lorwyn Standard, imagine it. People get Cryptics and Thoughtseizes and a more powerful Standard for a bit. I know I'd be at FNM every damn week.
    Posted in: Baseless Speculation
  • 0

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Quote from Magicman657 »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from Magicman657 »
    Quote from masterplum »
    You guys are arguing exactly why I'm a modern only player. I spent 700 bucks and I have a tier 1 deck that isn't going away. I'm not playing non tier 1 decks because I would be pissed if I lost because I wasn't P2Wing, therefore I don't play standard and I don't play legacy.

    Just because I COULD win with a budget legacy deck doesn't make it remotely worthwhile. If I can't play tier 1 I'm not playing. It's not worth my time or frustration.


    That's almost the same amount of money I used to build Legacy Merfolk. As a bonus, most of the cards in the Legacy list are also playable in the Modern version. I think you're not really being fair in regards to how much a competitive Legacy deck can actually cost. There are some really expensive ones, but on the other hand, Jund in Modern is like 1800$, so it's not as if there's a galaxy of distance there.


    Except there was. Check Modern prices at the start of last year vs. now. The gulf was enormous. Jund is an outlier, it's always been the most expensive deck in the format. But there was a point where many competitive decks could be had without spending much more than you would on a Standard deck. Not to mention, Standard trades into Modern easier. The guy with his 5th Geist is more likely to part with it for, say the new Gideon than a Legacy player is going to cough up a FoW for a pair of Gideons.

    The real crime here is that SCG has basically become the benchmark for pricing and they are very irresponsible with that power they've come to have. Remember at the beginning of this past Modern season there was a RUG deck that ran 4 Disrupting Shoal? That card went from 50 cent bin to $10 overnight. You cannot tell me that they had a run on the card. That was purely preemptive gouging. It's gotten to the point where cards that see fringe to zero play in Modern are now commanding prices in the $8-12 range with absolutely no justification at all. Sure Modern season is over, but they've hedged their bets. Prices are cooling now, but never to where they were a year ago. This constant, exponential growth in prices doesn't match my paycheck's growth, I can tell you that. They can't keep compounding the price barrier on every format like this and expect it to stay healthy. Unfortunately, WotC hasn't seen fit to see it for what it is and be more aggressive with value reprints, so you have things like this blow to Legacy taking place (which I really do feel bad about, even not being able to play much of it).

    I've been saying it for years, that these tactics were affecting the long term health of the game. Really sad to start seeing it taking place.


    Is it really an outlier though? Just doing a quick look at the Modern metagame, we find all of these decks, with plenty more hovering aroung 800$. All of these could just as easily be competitive Legacy decks.

    Jund: 1882
    Grixis Twin: 1158
    Junk: 1663
    UR Twin: 1376
    Naya Company: 1422
    Grixis Control: 1358
    Zoo: 1136


    It was, definitely. Not so much anymore. As it stands right now, which you can see in the Modern prices discussion, the argument has been for a while that this increase in price is not healthy. I mean, look at this:

    http://www.mtgprice.com/sets/Lorwyn/Cryptic_Command

    A 4th printing of a card that rarely makes more than 2-of in 5/18 of the tier-1 decks in Modern, and that's what it finally took to make a dent in the price tag...yet it's still not back to the pre-2013 price when it only had 2 printings...how is that even possible? Supply went up, demand went down. This card should have cratered to $10 by now, yet you still can't get it for the $25 it was prior to GP Richmond. Since that event, SCG has been fixing secondary market prices on Modern with the trend always heading up. Legacy, too, but that bubble had to burst. Modern will, too...it's just going to take longer.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Quote from Magicman657 »
    Quote from masterplum »
    You guys are arguing exactly why I'm a modern only player. I spent 700 bucks and I have a tier 1 deck that isn't going away. I'm not playing non tier 1 decks because I would be pissed if I lost because I wasn't P2Wing, therefore I don't play standard and I don't play legacy.

    Just because I COULD win with a budget legacy deck doesn't make it remotely worthwhile. If I can't play tier 1 I'm not playing. It's not worth my time or frustration.


    That's almost the same amount of money I used to build Legacy Merfolk. As a bonus, most of the cards in the Legacy list are also playable in the Modern version. I think you're not really being fair in regards to how much a competitive Legacy deck can actually cost. There are some really expensive ones, but on the other hand, Jund in Modern is like 1800$, so it's not as if there's a galaxy of distance there.


    Except there was. Check Modern prices at the start of last year vs. now. The gulf was enormous. Jund is an outlier, it's always been the most expensive deck in the format. But there was a point where many competitive decks could be had without spending much more than you would on a Standard deck. Not to mention, Standard trades into Modern easier. The guy with his 5th Geist is more likely to part with it for, say the new Gideon than a Legacy player is going to cough up a FoW for a pair of Gideons.

    The real crime here is that SCG has basically become the benchmark for pricing and they are very irresponsible with that power they've come to have. Remember at the beginning of this past Modern season there was a RUG deck that ran 4 Disrupting Shoal? That card went from 50 cent bin to $10 overnight. You cannot tell me that they had a run on the card. That was purely preemptive gouging. It's gotten to the point where cards that see fringe to zero play in Modern are now commanding prices in the $8-12 range with absolutely no justification at all. Sure Modern season is over, but they've hedged their bets. Prices are cooling now, but never to where they were a year ago. This constant, exponential growth in prices doesn't match my paycheck's growth, I can tell you that. They can't keep compounding the price barrier on every format like this and expect it to stay healthy. Unfortunately, WotC hasn't seen fit to see it for what it is and be more aggressive with value reprints, so you have things like this blow to Legacy taking place (which I really do feel bad about, even not being able to play much of it).

    I've been saying it for years, that these tactics were affecting the long term health of the game. Really sad to start seeing it taking place.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Quote from VegaTDM »
    I was responding to

    That's like saying you can show up to a street race with a junker. Sure, you can spend money on the junker, lose and have a terrible time, but at least you got to play, right? This argument, this entire line of reasoning needs to stop in the community.


    where he called cheap decks junkers and said that you can't win with them and that simply isn't true.


    Context, sir. That was part of an overarching point about this stance the community, especially Legacy players, has defaulted to - this concept of 'take the cheapest decks and just be glad you get to show up at all'. It's a deflection of the problem that was at the heart of Legacy: cost barrier to entry. Instead of raging at SCG and their pretty scummy tactics, you blame the player that wants to play in your format but can't afford it.

    I'm a pretty damn good player if results are any indication. That said, I've never played a burn deck in my life, and I suck at dredge decks. Delver, RUG, Maverick, Miracles are much more my playstyle, but all 4 of them require an investment I'm not willing to make. I probably would have tried if the format was healthy in Charlotte, but it just wasn't. The money isn't there for the players, and a lot of the up-and-coming players in the area are new blood that have only been playing the past 5 years or less. I've been playing since CHK-RAV, so I missed the boat, too. I have little pieces here and there, but nothing I can finish a deck with.

    Look at it this way - if I said 3 years ago I'm going to start working toward a Legacy deck, Underground Sea was at $170 (which is still ridiculous for a land), so I start trading up, saving money, etc. By next year, it was hovering around $222. A year later it was at $409. Prices are finally starting to cool again, but they're still at $290. I'd have been chasing a monster. Meanwhile, these collectors were like 'Don't reprint, it's worth $180. Now you really can't reprint, it's worth $220. Now you better never reprint, it's at $400.' The bubble had to burst eventually, unfortunately it took the format with it.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Quote from VegaTDM »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from enollava »
    Quote from IronPlushy »
    Not sure where you compare an $80 Heroic Deck to a $2500 Delver deck. In standard most players don't have complete lists and a lot of players have to budget, but you can still be in contention with a budgeted deck. In legacy budgeting means spending $1000 on a deck instead of $1800 not to mention there are far fewer legacy tournaments and the disparity between a real legacy and a budgeted legacy deck is astronomical when you compare it to the same disparity in standard.
    And legacy may be cheaper in the long run after years, but that means years of not playing magic as you save up for a legacy deck. In standard you can pop $200 and have a deck capable of placing in tournaments, maybe not necessarily conquering them, in legacy $200 gets you a land.
    What happens is WotC listens to everyone complaining, squeaky wheel gets the grease, enough people must have complained to keep the reserved list, that'ds the bottom line. I'd love to take a shot at legacy but it's completely cost prohibitive no matter what legacy players say.


    There are legacy decks cheaper than modern decks. You can go with Burn, and manaless dredge variants. There are cheap options. They are not tire 1 decks per say, but they show up in the top 8 once in a while, so they aren't junk either.


    That's like saying you can show up to a street race with a junker. Sure, you can spend money on the junker, lose and have a terrible time, but at least you got to play, right? This argument, this entire line of reasoning needs to stop in the community. Playing 'a deck' is not the same as playing 'a format'. I look at my collection against the top 8 of the last few opens. I have literally 80% or better of every list there. The pieces I don't have (ABU Duals, FOW, LED, Gaea's Cradle) total 6 months rent. For a house. With more than 1 bedroom. That's stupid.

    I don't like that the format is basically getting shelved. But whatever powers that be, whatever vocal minority put pressure on WotC to not get rid of the RL, did this. The writing should have been on the wall for Legacy players right then and there. You didn't make WotC change their mind, now you're seeing the first signs the format dies. It's sad, but it was also preventable. There isn't much use complaining about tournament support now when the format's required staples were held under a no-reprint lock and key for years.


    If you think monocolored decks or manaless dredge arent viable you haven't been playing real legacy.


    I didn't say anything about viability. Neither did he. What are you talking about?
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 2

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Quote from enollava »
    Quote from IronPlushy »
    Not sure where you compare an $80 Heroic Deck to a $2500 Delver deck. In standard most players don't have complete lists and a lot of players have to budget, but you can still be in contention with a budgeted deck. In legacy budgeting means spending $1000 on a deck instead of $1800 not to mention there are far fewer legacy tournaments and the disparity between a real legacy and a budgeted legacy deck is astronomical when you compare it to the same disparity in standard.
    And legacy may be cheaper in the long run after years, but that means years of not playing magic as you save up for a legacy deck. In standard you can pop $200 and have a deck capable of placing in tournaments, maybe not necessarily conquering them, in legacy $200 gets you a land.
    What happens is WotC listens to everyone complaining, squeaky wheel gets the grease, enough people must have complained to keep the reserved list, that'ds the bottom line. I'd love to take a shot at legacy but it's completely cost prohibitive no matter what legacy players say.


    There are legacy decks cheaper than modern decks. You can go with Burn, and manaless dredge variants. There are cheap options. They are not tire 1 decks per say, but they show up in the top 8 once in a while, so they aren't junk either.


    That's like saying you can show up to a street race with a junker. Sure, you can spend money on the junker, lose and have a terrible time, but at least you got to play, right? This argument, this entire line of reasoning needs to stop in the community. Playing 'a deck' is not the same as playing 'a format'. I look at my collection against the top 8 of the last few opens. I have literally 80% or better of every list there. The pieces I don't have (ABU Duals, FOW, LED, Gaea's Cradle) total 6 months rent. For a house. With more than 1 bedroom. That's stupid.

    I don't like that the format is basically getting shelved. But whatever powers that be, whatever vocal minority put pressure on WotC to not get rid of the RL, did this. The writing should have been on the wall for Legacy players right then and there. You didn't make WotC change their mind, now you're seeing the first signs the format dies. It's sad, but it was also preventable. There isn't much use complaining about tournament support now when the format's required staples were held under a no-reprint lock and key for years.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 3

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    Well, we've seen Theros without Serum Visions and (possibly) Daybreak Coronet, Khans come and go without Enemy fetches, then we saw Zendikar, which seemed like a no-brainer for them and the entirely too expensive Goblin Guide, still nothing. MM15 was a gigantic blown opportunity with 3/4 of the rares still sitting from their original sets in the 50 cent bin at your LGS. Then there's shady stuff SCG has done like the enemy fetch buyout or the Noble Hierarch price adjustment weeks ahead of it getting spoiled for MM15.

    I think it's painfully obvious the writing is on the wall that there is at least some collusion taking place between WotC and SCG. One or both want Legacy to go away at this point, and so it shall.

    I think it's also kinda curious that this is 'a year of stabilization' as WotC put it when explaining the reduction in events. Because after a ton of growth, you shrink unexpectedly. Last I checked, that's not what stabilization means.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on [SCG] Changes to Organized Play
    http://www.starcitygames.com/article/31835_StarCityGamescom-Organized-Play-Update.html

    Some pretty major changes to the 2016 calendar.

    Looks like Legacy is basically getting the axe, also 'Classic' tourneys are now paying out in prize wall tickets.

    All in all, everyone seems to be blowing up their page with rage and salt.

    Other Changes:
    • Reductions in number of Opens.
    • Cut from 4 seasons to 3.
    • West Coast has seen the most significant reduction of events.
    • Legacy has seen the most significant reduction of events.
    • Sunday events are no longer Premiere IQ's, rather Classics. They will pay out in Prize Wall Tickets.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    I gotta be honest, I really don't like Blade of Selves. This card becomes an instant 'all hands on deck' to destroy, because even utility weenies you can usually ignore like Eternal Witness, Mulldrifter, and even Satyr Wayfinder become value-monsters even getting one attack in. This thing is like a Mimic Vat on crack. I don't know, it just feels too pushed.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • 0

    posted a message on Spoilers November 2
    Snake Tribal and Kalmne's Captain are pretty impressive, but those keywords...eww. Bring on the reprints. That Goblin's text box actually hurts my eyes to read. Myriad sounds a bit overblown. The red spell...is a red spell, idk. It's alright.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 0

    posted a message on Jace, Vryn's Prodigy: Heading for a Standard Ban?
    Quote from prismatic elf »
    Quote from twicky_kid »
    We are no where near a ban. Standard bans are reserved for cards that become an overwhelming numbers of the top 8 of numerous events (80% or more).

    We will never get to that point with a card that dies to wild slash.

    I really dislike this Wow generation that think everything that is good needs a ban.
    The problem is while Jace dies to wild slash turn 2 or 3 Ojutai's Command Resurrects him back a couple turns later. Then he'll do a little digging flip and start to burry the opponent in card advantage by flashing cards back from the graveyard. Running removal spells is not enough to deal with jace we need a good graveyard removal card. Even if you successfully deal with Jace he's just one soldier in Jeskai, Mantis Rider and Dragonmaster Outcast are ready to put the game away. Commands can also resurrect Dragonmaster late game. I would rather see wizards print a answer for Jace than Ban him personally but if they do not I really believe jace will take over the format and cause a lot of players to stop playing Standard.


    And this right here is why Jace doesn't warrant a ban. The problem isn't Jace himself, it's the meta around him. It's painfully weak on basic utility cards that have been in 90% of Standard sets for a decade. In a Standard with the most basic removal tools (Doom Blade, Magma Spray, Lightning Strike), and mild graveyard hate (Rest in Peace) both the Delve mechanic and Jace get noticeably worse.

    In short, there's no deck he's creating around himself that's taking 6/8 slots in tourneys, he's not causing attendance to drop (this crappy meta can do that fine on its own), and a Merfolk Looter to so-so planeswalker is not inherently broken of itself. There's nothing here that's ban-worthy. It's just a terrible card pool and maybe it gets better. Or it doesn't, and he still stays.
    Posted in: Standard Archives
  • 0

    posted a message on [Primer] Abzan Aggro/Midrange
    I went to Game Day today with basically the stock list from Minneapolis States / PT. Went 2-2 in all around grindy matches the whole damn day. What really frustrated me was in 2 matches, I literally handed away 2 matches on not being able to get black by turn 4. Only being able to fetch black with specific fetches or topdecking them is unbearably frustrating. I got murdered by a fatty in both games while holding Abzan Charm. It really just made me want to scream.
    Posted in: Standard Archives
  • 0

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from veXlaMtg »


    PS. Now I think that I agree, that doing this is so much effort which is truly not worth it because someone again comes with "you're like stupid wall" without presenting any real reason.


    The reason was in the argument, again. You're taking sets that aren't just iconic, revered, or saw loads heavier play than BFZ by leaps and bounds, but had major, permanent effects on Legacy, Modern, Commander, and Standard. BFZ can't hold a candle to even the lamest (imo) set there, SOM in terms of what it brings to every format's table. The fact that you're still not getting that is just proving the point harder.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 3

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from harlannowick »
    Quote from clan_iraq »
    http://www.mtggoldfish.com/articles/standard-breakdown-of-pro-tour-khans-of-tarkir

    The same breakdown from last year had the top 20 cards, top 20 creatures, walkers, spells, and the % of decks the khans cards were showing up in
    8 out of the top 20 cards with 5 sets in rotation were from the new set, 5/18 widely played (10%+) creatures, only 6 walkers saw wide play of which 2 were khans, 7 of the top 19 spells. Their breakdown on most played cards stops early because its sorted by # of copies rather than % decks running it, but I think its safe to say there were at least 20 khans cards seeing play in 10%+ of decks, 10 of which were in at least 25%+ of decks. This is all ignoring lands.

    Try to sort the other breakdown to these same metrics if you want, but I think the results will say what we already know, gideon is the only winner, radiant flames runner up, and beyond the reprints, like they say, the drop off is swift and sharp and pitiful
    +1

    That seems like a reasonable demonstration that BFZ has impacted its standard to a lesser extent than KTK impacted its standard.



    As far as EDH goes, there are plenty of good cards for edh. Some examples...
    • And all of the expeditions


    I mean, yeah...if you have no Magic Collection and no access to older cards that do the job of 90% of every card you listed better, for about the same price...I mean Ugin's Insight? Painful Truths? Part the Waterveil? Planar Outburst? Or just Rhystic Study/Divining Top/Sylvan Library, Skeletal Scrying/Sign in Blood/Ambition's Cost, Time Warp/Temporal Mastery/Time Reversal, Any white board-wipe ever?

    That's not to say this has nothing for Commander, it certainly does. But you're reaching to make the list bigger than it should be.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 9

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from veXlaMtg »
    Quote from SephX »
    Quote from tenzoku »
    My argument is that if anything, the problem is that in this transition, It's Khans that has already overstayed it's welcome, because people have been casting Siege Rhinos and Mantis Riders for over a year, BFZ's job is to enable these archetypes to it's fullest one last time, while also spawning new decks and strategies, that for the moment as they are not fully fleshed out, much less tuned, they are gonna be contenders, but are unlikely to be dominant in any way anytime soon.


    How are you not reading between the lines of what you're actually saying? Khans has better cards and power level and archetypes and mechanics and support, so no one is playing with BFZ. Nothing overstayed its welcome, we're not even fully into the newer, shorter rotation schedule yet. This is par for the course. Had BFZ been stronger and brought a different mechanic to the table, it might be used, but these 'gonna be contenders' decks you're talking about will get there when another set comes out, or Khans rotates. That doesn't mean BFZ is good, strong, powerful, well-designed, or flavorful. That just means maybe it gets supported better with Oath. Or it doesn't, and this entire block is just a crutch to prop up the blocks in front of and behind it.


    And to be precise it also doesn't mean that BFZ is bad, weak, unpowerfull, bad-designed or flavorless. Every argument people defending "BFZ is bad set" posted here just says, that BFZ is worse then Khans block collected. To be precise: we have strong evidence that BFZ is weaker then the strongest block in past eight? years - and I don't deny it. But again - it says almost NOTHING about BFZ. (And yes, I explained why in this thread before)

    As for me not answering what I suppose to be bad set, it is hard to say, because even Theros had at least good flavor (for me). So I answer something else again but that "somethin else" will still be more meaningful. Personally, I find these fall sets worse/weaker than BFZ: Theros, Scars of Mirrodin, Shards of Alara with Innistrad being more on par with BFZ then better.


    So...the set that gave rise to Mono Blue and Black Devotion, Courser, Brimaz, the Gods...The set that gave Standard its first ban in a decade because of 3 Swords, Batterskull, gave us Wurmcoil Engine, Fastlands, Phyrexian Mana, Infect...the set that gave us Elspeth, Ajani Vengeant, the backbone of KTK's design...and the most celebrated top-down set in recent memory, that also gave us more Eternal Format-defining staples than arguably any other set ever. Yeah, if you believe those are on the same level as BFZ, I'd have more luck debating this with a wall.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 2

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from tenzoku »
    My argument is that if anything, the problem is that in this transition, It's Khans that has already overstayed it's welcome, because people have been casting Siege Rhinos and Mantis Riders for over a year, BFZ's job is to enable these archetypes to it's fullest one last time, while also spawning new decks and strategies, that for the moment as they are not fully fleshed out, much less tuned, they are gonna be contenders, but are unlikely to be dominant in any way anytime soon.


    How are you not reading between the lines of what you're actually saying? Khans has better cards and power level and archetypes and mechanics and support, so no one is playing with BFZ. Nothing overstayed its welcome, we're not even fully into the newer, shorter rotation schedule yet. This is par for the course. Had BFZ been stronger and brought a different mechanic to the table, it might be used, but these 'gonna be contenders' decks you're talking about will get there when another set comes out, or Khans rotates. That doesn't mean BFZ is good, strong, powerful, well-designed, or flavorful. That just means maybe it gets supported better with Oath. Or it doesn't, and this entire block is just a crutch to prop up the blocks in front of and behind it.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from harlannowick »
    Quote from prismatic elf »
    BFZ didn't show up in the numbers that a very large first set of a block should have had at the pro tour. Pros are pretty good deck builders if any good decks from BFZ were possible they would have been on it.

    I love when people make claims without providing documented evidence to support there claims.

    Honestly, you say BFZ didn't show up in numbers the way previous fall sets did without saying how much BFZ showed up, how much a fall set should show up, or saying how you established these figures.

    Remember that I don't necessarily disagree with you, I'm simply critiquing the common habit of people making claims without justifying their claims.


    It's more work than it's worth. I specifically and directly asked veXlaMtg what qualifies as a bad set, he dodged the question. Skullfer brings his incessant argument back here, trying to change the semantics from 'bad set' to 'low power level', despite the fact that there are even people that will say dumb crap like, 'I don't think the power level is low in BFZ, it's just because you're looking at competitive constructed formats', you know, the ones everyone is playing, watching on twitch, netdecking, emulating, discussing, and filling seats at events.

    We're all MtG players, the fact that none of the mechanics carried over from BFZ at the Pro Tour was the final telling account there is no 'breaking' BFZ, or even breaking much new ground. Anyone that has a longer memory than a goldfish should be able to recall past Pro Tours and how much new blocks drastically altered the Standard landscape. Percentages, while the information is out there to crunch, is pointless. Numbers, facts, statistics, none of these arguments have swayed what few rabid defenders of this set remain, so why bother?
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 0

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from veXlaMtg »
    Quote from Kasi »
    That's not really true. You're making a fallacy that introducing new archetypes meant pushing the power up. We just had Theros rotate which contributed decks to the last format that did not rely on those three color creatures you talk of. You had heroic which was filled with small creatures that saw no play elsewhere take down SCGs and even do well in GPs. You had devotion which pushed out green giant fatties. Where was Atarka this last pro tour? Oh yeah nowhere to be found, too slow now since no mana ramp. You had constellation/reanimator which was generally the same deck that ran a bunch of mediocre synergy creatures to get constellation triggers. None of these decks won pro tours. But they won a GP or two and did well on the SCG open. And if Theros was still around those decks would still be viable, if not as good as Abzan or Jeskai. Good enough to top 8 events though.

    So no this set could have contributed to standard. But they made a format for draft and put barely anything worth playing in it. Rally could be a constructed mechanic, but it's too centered around five drops and condemned to limited. Eldrazi is dead for the same reason Atarka is. They killed meaningful ramp. Ingest/processors is a limited mechanic and devoid lacks any support. So all you have is cards that are good enough to stand on their own, of which there are painfully few. The biggest issue is this set has is they made no archetype good enough for constructed.


    No, I'm not. That's you, Ashiok and many others that do this fallacy. The main point is that for introducing new archetype, you MUST do at least one of these things:
    1) making powerlevel of new archetype at least on same high as powerlevel of existing tier-one archetypes (which, again, should NOT be possible in "multicolor->monocolor" enviroment - else hello powercreep)
    2) weakening existing tier-one archetypes (by rotation) enough to make space for new ones

    In BFZ they correctly didn't thing 1) and by printing dual lands also failed to achieve 2)

    EDIT: accidentaly deleted: "but it doesn't make BFZ bad set as many suggest in this forums."


    Wait, you set out your own criteria for creating deck archetypes, said BFZ failed on both counts, and it's still not a bad set? What on God's green earth qualifies for a 'bad set' with you?
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
  • 11

    posted a message on BFZ cards used in the Pro Tour top 8
    Quote from pierrebai »
    Quote from RedGauntlet »
    Lands aren't good enough to redeem a set. Kinda silly to defend the set because it introduced new lands. When lands never had impact on standard in these last years?


    Kinda silly to defend a set because it introduced new creatures.
    Kinda silly to defend a set because it introduced new instants.
    Kinda silly to defend a set because it introduced new planeswalkers.
    Kinda silly to defend a set because it introduced new ...

    Funny how it sounds ludicrous now?

    Quote from Kasi »
    Congratulations, there is two good cards out of BFZ instead of one?


    Gah-haw!

    No one misunderstand that three-colors spells are better. Mantis, Rhino, Charms, it's hard to make better card at lower cost with fewer colors. Why do you think you need to deny that BfZ cards were played?

    I'm not concerned with the fact that Khans had very good cards.

    I'm concerned with the absolute denial people lock themselves in.

    "Lands doesn't count!" when Zendikar is land-based set with two land-based mechanics. "Removal doesn't count!" "Sweepers don't count" (Fortunate when two from BfZ got played.) "Landfall creature are too weak to possibly count!"

    Bah.


    There's still some of you guys left? Really? This complaining started mid-spoiler when the set seemed very weak, and hasn't stopped. The counterpoint:

    "Wait until the whole set is spoiled, duh!"
    "Wait until you've had a chance to play with it, duh!"
    "Wait until tourney results start coming in, duh!"
    "Wait until the Pro Tour, duh!"
    "Wait...until Oath, duh!"

    ...and you want to talk about denial? Seriously?

    Look, no mechanics carried over. Creatures aren't getting used. The themes of the set aren't being played. The tribe isn't being played. The 'big evil' of the set is not getting used. The set is not getting used in any meaningful way. Just accept it and move on. They've made bad sets before, this will probably (hopefully) be the worst set in recent and future memory, and that's fine. It really, really is. Standard will suck for a while, and maybe someday sooner rather than later, it gets better. But it's just sad that you're sitting clinging onto scraps at this point. Yes, of course the lands don't count. That's not ridiculous, that's Magic. We have to use whatever the new lands are, even when we don't like them, even when they damage us, even when it's not evenly distributed across color pairs. What has NEVER happened in the past decade is a set gets basically ignored en masse on this kind of scale. It doesn't matter if it's 1 card or 6, or 12. This set is only getting use to fill in roles taken by THS rotating. It's only being used to prop up glorified KTK block decks.

    It's a bummer, I know, but this set is bad. Real bad. Better luck to all of us next time.
    Posted in: New Card Discussion
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