• posted a message on [Deck] Solidarity (Reset High Tide)
    The consensus (not that there is much of one on this deck) has shifted towards running the playset of DTT in the main and having the the 4th Meditate in the side, so even if you run Feline's list, I'd make that change off the bat. I'm a staunch supporter of Remand in Solidarity at this point, so I'm a little biased against her list since she favours Snapcaster over remand. Similarly, I feel she's running a bit heavy on lands. That being said, her list is fine to start off on -- the mainboard is only ~5 cards off of what I run and would recommend (the DTT vs Meditate tweak, she's 2 lands higher than me, and she runs one extra snapcaster and flusterstorm over me). The big thing is to try it out in multiple ways and spend time learning each version -- subtle deck changes can radically change how Solidarity operates.

    For completeness, the list I run right now looks like this*:
    DeckMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    4 Opt
    4 Brainstorm
    4 Impulse
    4 Dig Through Time
    3 Cunning Wish
    3 Meditate
    2 Remand
    4 Force of Will
    2 Flusterstorm
    4 High Tide
    4 Reset
    2 Snap
    2 Snapcaster Mage
    1 Brain Freeze

    3 Flooded Strand
    3 Polluted Delta
    2 Scalding Tarn
    9 Island



    *I should note that I'm typing this from memory without pulling out the deck, but it should be accurate.
    Posted in: Combo
  • posted a message on Pro Players and Basic Lands
    In line with what Teia said, different art or editions can allow your opponent to pick up on whether you're running multiples of a card (basic land or even a normal spell) even if they only see a single copy in each of the first two games. This can help inform them on how much to play around cards.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Improperly Determining a Winner
    Quote from Xequecal »
    I have a question about this. Say you and your opponent are playing in a midnight prerelease, it's the final round, and you're both undefeated. You've agreed to split the packs, and don't want to play the game out because you're both tired or you want to enter another draft or sealed. However at this store, prizes are awarded based on total points, so if one player concedes to the other, you both get more prize because three points from a win is worth more than two points from a draw.

    The question is, how do you decide who concedes to whom? As far as I can tell, there is absolutely no legal way for you and your opponent to determine this. In fact, it's not even legal to communicate with them about it in any way. You can't flip a coin. You can't agree that the person with the lower DCI rating or worse overall tournament tiebreakers will concede. You can't offer to buy him breakfast if he takes the concession. After someone points out that you will both get more prize if one player concedes to the other, all you can do is have a weird Orwellian staring match where neither of you are allowed to say anything and the first person to speak up and offer the concession loses.

    The awkward orwellian staring match is unfortunately the way it often goes. There are some ways that can work, but they're very awkward in that they function off the gray area of what is prizes verses match results (For example, in GPTs asking if the other person wants the byes, or on MTGO agreeing who receives the QP) - the problem here is that you can include those in the prize split but potentially still find yourself in the problem position that you are stuck hoping that both players know what's going associated with that split. The biggest thing to remember is that you can talk about concession and you can talk about prize splits, but they can never be linked to eachother (note the awkwardness here with the gray area prizes).

    This is such a land mine-laden discussion that I strongly advise people who are at all uncertain to call a judge, ask to speak to them away from the table, and then ask if the exact proposition and words about to be used would be okay. It protects everyone involved from some extreme bad feels from something as simple as poor word choice.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Why do people call the spread of decks played "the meta"?
    Quote from Luck »
    Just an input from someone who spends time on other competitive games, Magic isn't the only game to use the term "meta-game" in the way MtG players use it. Competitive Pokemon for example, which is based around usage tiers, has a banlist, and has a similarly complex rock-papers-scissors style of gameplay uses the term metagame in the same exact context as well. So I imagine the use of the term goes back further than just "some MtG player coined the term and we now all use it" versus a term like mise which is 100% MtG coined.

    Other card games probably aren't the best example for non-mtg usages. Magic was the leader of the entire genre -- the success of other TCGs was largely predicated on the success of MtG and they inherited a lot of their terminology and theory from MTG.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Improperly Determining a Winner
    Quote from Noble Ire »

    This is tied in to another and very little known prohibited way of determining a winner: you are not allowed to theorycraft how the game would have played out. This is perhaps the grayest of areas, but it does come up (especially at GPs), and worse still, it essentially changes how the match functions when you're in the middle of the round verses up against time/extra turns. This is the kind of thing that you will have a judge step in and say "don't finish that sentence" or "I need you to stop talking now", because the line between noting your onboard position "I'm representing lethal" and explaining the hypothetical course of the rest of the game can be super-fine at times.


    So, by way of example, does this principle mean that a player who is playing a combo deck and is going off - specifically a combo that involves a continuing element of randomness like Eggs rather than a simple series of repeated on-board actions like Twin - isn't allowed to explain the combo to their opponent and indicate that carrying out the necessary sequence will inevitably result in a win? If so, does that mean that Mike Long's famous Cadaverous Bloom / Drain Life bluff was technically illegal?

    Amusingly, it doesn't. It's totally fine to say "look, I'm doing this and you will die this way" to save time in a turn, and you'll notice that even if that happened in extra turns, there would be no issue if the person instead played it out.

    Conversely, to use another real world example, I had some friends at GP San Jose earlier this year who achieved a board state where through a combination of Kheru Bloodsucker and Palace Siege (set to khans), tricks, and the like, they had lethal in about six different ways if the game were to go longer. They were interrupted by a judge (the HJ actually iirc) to prevent them from explaining in detail all the ways by which they had their opponent dead.

    This is the most difficult part of "improperly determining a winner" for me even as a judge, and for each player I know. The best (and admittedly still poor) way that I can characterize it is that the rules of table talk shift when you're nearing the time limit so as to prevent people achieving by theorycrafting that which would be achieved by another prohibited means (in this case, flipping cards off the top).

    EDIT: nathed by Natedogg
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on Fake Tarmogoyf from Craigslist (CA)
    There were some fake shocklands that looked similar to these that circulated at our LGS. Most seemed to be off in size (especially with the printed area in relation to the card size -- note the wider than normal black boarders) and flimsier than normal cards. If these are the same, they would not pass close personal inspection.

    One concerning aspect is that the ones I saw *did* pass the blue line test and *failed* the light test (the "shine light from behind the card" light test, not the blacklight test).

    As mentioned by others, the printing was also clearly not the same as real cards when evaluating the dot pattern.
    Posted in: Card Authentication
  • posted a message on Why do people call the spread of decks played "the meta"?
    My understanding is that it's a back-formation metagame (the noun).

    Essentially, the "metagame" is the "game beyond the game".* This as noun refers to the the larger game and decisions beyond specifically playing a game of magic. The word itself could be interpreted extremely broadly, but in MTG usage, it's been jargonized to a specific use regarding tournament composition, and short-handed into "meta". This got shifted into a verb because if you were selecting a deck to counter what was popular, you were playing that game beyond the game. It's unclear if "meta" was back-formed from the noun or the verb though.


    *This is actually the literal meaning of the word.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Improperly Determining a Winner
    Quote from TheNoob »
    Quote from Xlapus »
    Improperly Determing a Winner is: Determining a winner using any method other than A) playing a match of magic of the format your tournament is being held in, B) one person conceding to the other, or C) choosing to intentionally draw.

    Improper methods include:
    Playing a match of Commander to determine the outcome of your Standard match.
    After you've taken your 5 extra turns and no one has won, deciding each player will flip the top few cards of their library and whoever would have the better draws gets the win.
    Running a foot race around the venue.
    Flipping a coin.
    Holding an impromptu beauty contest.
    etc.

    Source: Am Level 2 Judge.


    I have a question about the example I bolded. Can the players use that information to make a decision to concede? I understand that you can just flip cards and use some arbitrary value on the cards to "win" but can they influence the decision?

    You are not allowed to flip cards off the top at all. Best case scenario, you each get hit for drawing/looking at extra cards. More likely is that any judge will realize why you're actually flipping them and then things will get far worse.

    This is tied in to another and very little known prohibited way of determining a winner: you are not allowed to theorycraft how the game would have played out. This is perhaps the grayest of areas, but it does come up (especially at GPs), and worse still, it essentially changes how the match functions when you're in the middle of the round verses up against time/extra turns. This is the kind of thing that you will have a judge step in and say "don't finish that sentence" or "I need you to stop talking now", because the line between noting your onboard position "I'm representing lethal" and explaining the hypothetical course of the rest of the game can be super-fine at times.

    Really, it all boils down to this: If you are thinking of any way that is not strictly playing magic of the prescribed format with your presented decks or deciding to stop the game (by concession/draw), the method you're thinking of is not okay.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on what do Spikes think makes a good format vs a bad format? (also: venting about DTK)
    Quote from silph »
    maybe this is related to the "Is Dash beatable?" thread,
    but i'm getting sick of red.

    to be fair, i haven't actually played any additional [real, non-Cockatrice] DTK draft other than the first one i did. i have been watching channelfireball drafts, though.

    i can't help but feel that the developers messed up bad and made red wa~~y too strong. i feel that even if a weaker colour is WAY open (blue or green), it STILL can't compete against an Rx deck as long as fewer than 4 people are in red.


    i hate the idea that i either have to play red, too, or consciously build my deck to not get clobbered by red decks. i feel so constrained. i feel that there are all these other cards in the set that kind of become "useless filler" and that the viable archetypes are either "red" or "things that survive against red".

    ----

    this makes me wonder on what makes for a good format, for various people? my Timmy/Tammy - Johnny/Jenny motivations make me want to have the time to play cool stuff in unusual combinations. but i wonder: do Spikes even care if one colour or or one archetype is dominant? do Spikes simply happily see how to play the best strategy, and are happy as long as they feel that superior strategy has high influence on win % ?


    Mostly I want games to allow me to most leverage playskill differential while also providing strategic depth to allow decks to feel different. I did very well throughout Theros limited (including a GP T8), but it sucked. Sure it wasn't as bad as Gatecrash, but the format so often came down to tempo and the primary way to recover tempo was to have the opponent stumble rather than anything you did (either that or griptide -- a key reason why that card was so insane in that format). Like, yeah, playskill still mattered (I can't think of a format where the most skilled player was not advantaged), but the games just didn't feel good.

    M14, 3x KTK, 3x RTR, full TSP block -- all of these formats were a ton of fun, and that's independent of how well I did in them. M15 was even fine for me, and I remember our test drafts for PT M15 resulted in some crazy drafts that did really wierd things (For example, I remember a WRB reanimator-control deck that did very well, even though it was totally out of left field. Similarly, one of my teammates for GP Portland had hyper-specialized on GR Invasive Species + Hammerhand as an archetype).

    It doesn't really matter to me if a single archetype is especially deep (refer to RTR where Selesnya often supported 3-4 players). What matters to me is how games play out -- it's way easier to play in multi-day events when you really enjoy and are passionate the format, and on top of that, it's easier to remain focused.
    Posted in: Limited (Sealed, Draft)
  • posted a message on [Deck] Solidarity (Reset High Tide)
    Quote from Alias1983 »
    I know how it works and how good bs+fetch go. But I early see fetches maybe 2 when I get to go off.

    Used the spiral tide bit to say I kinda know how to play tide.


    BS + Fetch is actually way worse in Solidarity. Your "bad" cards are High Tide, Reset, and Cunning Wish, and even then you are probably only 50/50 to want to shuffle cards away in this deck. Everything trends toward wanting card bulk in this deck.

    That being said, the fetches are important for those other two reasons I mentioned. When you can expect to see 50% or more of the deck in a single turn, the thinning from even a couple fetches on such a low count is a big deal. Also, every card in your graveyard gives you more wiggle room when you're still in "tight" combo mode when you're constrained on resources. It helps you hold cards to snapcast in the graveyard when delving for DTT. Also, being able to case DTT prior to comboing is a big deal.

    I would say that Spiral Tide does not prepare you for this deck. It definitely helps, but I would actually say I've been majorly helped by experience with three decks, and Spiral Tide is only one of them. The other two are Spanish Inquisition and Aluren. Spiral Tide preps you on the Tide math. SI's version of comboing is very relevant since it sets you up for running percentages in your head on how likely you are to get there, as well as for how you need to leave specific values of mana up as you weigh the chances of specific hits. And Aluren is the one deck (although Omnitell's recent incarnations are trending this way too) that comes close to setting you up to deal with the stack as Solidarity does -- Aluren often ends up playing an instant-speed cat-and-mouse game after resolving its namesake card and that gameplay helped prep me for navigating the stack with Solidarity.
    Posted in: Combo
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