I guarantee you that the price will drop substantially once the first few waves of product are opened and circulated. Then, 5-6 months later it will bottom out and slowly rise from that point onward. I'll emphasize slowly because it will probably take close to a year for it return to the preorder prices.
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Jun 7, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
I guarantee you that the price will drop substantially once the first few waves of product are opened and circulated. Then, 5-6 months later it will bottom out and slowly rise from that point onward. I'll emphasize slowly because it will probably take close to a year for it return to the preorder prices.
Jun 6, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
First off, I never vilified anyone... I highly encourage players to build legal decks
Vilify might be hyperbolic term but stating that someone is doing something illegal is a serious charge. This is especially true if they're innocent of the alleged crime. I want to stress that there is nothing (and I truly mean nothing) illegal about putting Windfall in your casual decks. They won't be legal in sanctioned Legacy events but unless you're fraudulently trying to pass them off as such you're in the free and clear from a moral and legal perspective.
That's a personal problem, not a legal problem. Just because you don't like or agree with something that doesn't make it illegal.
We did have a B&R list back when I used to play (non-EDH) Constructed multiplayer. I agree that it's good idea to employ one; never said otherwise. Still, it wouldn't cross my mind to accuse someone of building an illegal deck just because they didn't adhere to my casual house rules. We, as a Magic "society," collectively agreed to adhere to the terms and conditions for our personal enjoyment but we never imposed those restrictions on third-parties. What other people do is none of my business and so I leave those decisions to the playgroups themselves. I only take offence when people start overtly imposing their views on others such as telling them "you're doing something wrong by not following [IMAGINARY RULE]" when no such rule exists.
Jun 3, 2019Posted in: MultiplayerQuote from LukeFoley »Overpriced, sure, but I think the set will have a ton of staying power as exceptionally high-powered and exciting overall, especially when considering the impact across many different formats.
Sure, but for people looking to buy cards for their decks "now or later" is extremely relevant and I'm trying to caution people to sit and wait for MH1. There's plenty of cards worth buying in MH1, not suggesting otherwise, but the time to buy them will be a couple of months from now when supply is at its peak and demand is waning.
Jun 2, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
They're fighting for different slots and since the 3 drop is more competitive I expect this one to see substantially more play. Right now our only 2 drops are Wayward Servant and Relentless Dead so this is a welcome competitor. Budget-minded players can now ignore the wildly expensive Relentless Dead which is a good thing overall.
Here's my hot take on the set:
The set, by and large, is marginal EDH filler. The current prices are massively inflated and within the coming months we're going to see the smart sellers dumping product as quickly as possible while the people holding for value will see their investments plummet. All-in-all I expect this to go down as one of the worst received sets for bulk buyers.
White has 2 playables. Generous Gift is very good and will be an EDH staple. Ranger-Captain of Eos is also fantastic since it fetches things like Children of Korlis (for Necropotence, Ad Nauseam, etc.) while also acting as Silence for your combo turn. EDH staple in Orzhov.
Blue has more going on. Archmage's Charm is a safe longterm investment since it's powerful, flexible, fun and good in any deck that cast it. Good for casual, EDH, possibly Modern, etc. Echo of Eons will be a multiplayer EDH staple but currently the card is wildly overvalued due to the Lion's Eye Diamond interaction. I don't expect this to see serious competitive play in Legacy and I think that people will be disappointed when their broken spec falls flat. Force of Negation is solid and will see play in EDH and Modern (2-of in SBs in all likelihood). Blue and Black can draw virtual infinite cards with relative ease and this is a powerful form of disruption. Mirrodin Besieged is utterly fantastic but too niche to gain serious value. Tribute Mage will be an EDH staple for its ability to fecth Isochron Scepter and the current best win condition in blue is Isochron Scepter + Dramatic Reversal + mana rocks that tap for 3 or more mana. Urza, Lord High Artificer is broken. He'll initially lose value then steadily gain value forever. Foils will command a serious premium and will be extremely safe investments. Watcher for Tomorrow will see play in Inalla, Archmage Ritualist "Wizards matter" tribal decks but will otherwise be a minor player.
Black got some decent stuff. Changeling Outcast will be a staple in Yuriko, the Tiger's Shadow. Cordial Vampire is fine in Edgar Markov and will have casual applications in Viscera Seer + Bloodghast decks. Dead of Winter is fine in MBC but nothing special. Defile is a decent spot removal spell but nothing special. Endling has potential applications alongside Necrotic Ooze and Mairsil, the Pretender but none of the lines are more powerful than the existing ones. Force of Despair is extremely powerful and I'll be buying them for EDH and casual MP. Mind Rake will see play in Waste Not decks and is a welcome addition to monoblack reanimator. Putrid Goblin will be a staple in Mikaeus, the Unhallowed EDH. Ransack the Lab is a powerful cantrip for graveyard-matters decks. Sling-Gang Lieutenant might see play in Karlov of the Ghost Council EDH since it's an immediate +12/+12 boost if you have a Soul Sister in play. Undead Augur will be a staple in multiplayer zombies lists be they EDH or otherwise. Yawgmoth, Thran Physician is playable but unexciting. I don't think that he's a relevant EDH general in the slightest but I also know that I'm in the minority.
I'll post the rest of my thought later.
Jun 1, 2019Posted in: MultiplayerQuote from Thijs1301 »
Oh well, I’ll see what I like and what is relatively affordable.
No one should be preordering squat since the set is going to tank. The prices are currently massively inflated and I'm expecting them to implode. We've already seen the higher-end cards drop $5.00+ and you can bet that the $35.00+ cards will plummet once boxes start being circulated. Hold off for now and wait for the first few waves of product to hit and decided what you're interested in buying ~2 months after its initial release. Businesses are trying to prey off of the hype while the getting is good but make no mistake that these values aren't sustainable since most of the set is marginal EDH fodder.
Jun 1, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
That's my point though lol. There's nothing "illegal" about putting Windfall in your casual deck. If someone can point to me the rule that states otherwise, I'm more than willing to eat my words, but until then I don't understand why we're vilifying people for having fun playing a card game. The Legacy B&R list is just that; the Legacy B&R list. It's nothing more than that. So unless you're playing in a sanctioned Legacy B&R event it's wholly meaningless.
Let me put this another way. What if I started using the same logic for Innistrad Block Constructed and told everyone who didn't adhere to that card list didn't have a legal deck. Would people accept that or would they call me crazy? The second one right? Well how is the Legacy B&R list any less crazy? There's nothing about objectively legal/illegal about it either. I just don't understand how anyone can confidently state from a position of objective truth that people who have 4x Sol Ring or 4x Windfall in their decks have illegal lists. There's no such thing as an official B&R list for casual magic (be it multiplayer or otherwise).
May 30, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
I've yet to see anyone maintain a consistent opinion when it comes to multiplayer banned and restricted lists so it's unsurprising that people get confused. Unless the cards are banned in your playgroup then you're fine. It didn't magically become illegal just because another group banned its use in theirs.
May 28, 2019In the context of multiplayer Constructed Narset, Parter of Veils might be the strongest card printed in the last 10 years lol. It's slightly behind Waste Not in terms of sheer oppression (doesn't kill on turn 2 as consistently) but it's almost certainly the most powerful card printed since it was released. You're spot on when you say that she turns the game into Archenemy but that's because they took Leovold, Emissary of Trest, made him easier to cast and decided to give him a free Dig Through Time. Um, what? Excuse me? What they were smoking when they printed her is beyond me because my experience with Narset is that she comes down, ticks up for a card and then asks the table "can you remove me?" If not the game ends ~90% of the time that you untap with her because at that point you've gotten 1-2 digs for any Wheel effect (plus cantrips etc.) and assuming that you do the Narset -> Wheel combo you've essentially won. Obviously there's still luck in Magic and I've lost games from that position but that's a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things. Because let's face it, what's the risk? She comes down and Peer Through Depths for a powerful spell to replace herself. That's your floor. And yeah, that's not broken in a world of cards like Manifold Insights but when the upside is "turn 3-4 I win the game" and the floor is "marginal card selection" the risk reward is horribly skewed the wrong way.Posted in: Multiplayer
Moreover, she's still bonkers in "fair" decks. Even if you're not doing Wheel shenanigans she's still a Dig Though Time that costs 3 mana and that has a nutty passive effect. Given that she's a mono color card in the color that already loves spells it's hard to imagine a world where she's not a reasonable 2-4 in your Blue decks. Yeah, people will focus her down, but so what? You only to need to untap with her once to get your 3 mana Dig Through Time and even if she's only a temporary solution to card draw it's not costing you anything to run the gambit. So I'm more than happy to play her as a massively improved Augur of Bolas for my Control decks even if I'm not interested in any combos whatsoever. Especially if you're also in Black it's so easy to pair her with cards like Innocent Blood and Massacre that all-but guarantees your Dig Through Time even if people prioritize attacking her.
Also, that passive. Putting aside combos etc. the number of good players who've ran face first into her passive is obscene. I mean grinders who jam games online and participate in tourneys (including the MPL) who forget about these new PW passives. It's not just Narset, it applies to all of them, but the number of times that I've seen someone cast a Brainstorm only to "discard 2 cards" (you know what I mean) blows my mind. I've done it too! Not with Narset as much but I'd cast tutors into Ashiok and discard into Tamiyo only to realize that I'm an idiot. So even when you put aside the degenerate combos/card advantage/power that they bring to the table they're also these on-board tricks that routinely "get" people with their outrageously pushed passive abilities. It's like your brain stops working because you see a card like Tamiyo, Collector of Tales that draws cards, Regrowths, fuels revival and Delve, etc. and you think "this card couldn't possibly have any more upsides." Then you Duress that person to remove their Wilderness Reclamation or whatever only to realize that nope! There's still more! These cards all feel like they're under-costed by 1-2 mana or something along those lines.
Oh, and while I realize that Narset doesn't stop everything she stops more than enough to feel relevant. So I'm aware that she doesn't affect things like Impulse, Necropotence, Manifold Insights, Fact or Fiction, Ad Nauseam, etc. but she's still disruptive against enough of the most commonly played card advantage spells to put some serious screws to people. It's not that I think that she stops everything nor does she have to to have an overwhelming presence on the table even in the absence of 2-card combos like Waste Not/Narset, Parter of Veils -> Windfall/Dark Deal.
And the funny part is that the second best card in the set is probably Narset's Reversal. Don't even get me started on that card -_-.
May 28, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
Underrated where though? It's not good enough for competitive but I've never heard anyone dismiss the card in casual spheres. Most people seem to recognize that:
Turn 1 Wild Growth, Utopia Sprawl
Turn 2 Kiora, Behemoth Beckoner
Turn 3 Hydroid Krasis, Titania, Protector of Argoth (+ recur a Fetchland), Primeval Titan, Commence the Endgame, etc.
Is a powerful curve. Her synergy specifically with cards like Utopia Sprawl and Wild Growth, which are already staples, is way too powerful to overlook. That's 6 mana on turn 3 plus a steady source of card advantage which is nuts. And it's not like the deck dies if you don't draw Kiora either. Just play some copies of Overgrowth or whatever to ensure that you're routinely going 1 -> 3 -> 6 and you'll be fine.
May 26, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
The card is absolutely insane! He's an auto-include in the UB Tezzerator decks that play a ton of Artifacts, prison elements, ThopterSword, etc. Even if you ignore all of his text other than his +2 he still comes down and kills any number of opponents in 2-3 hits. Assuming that you have Artifact lands it's almost always hitting for 8+ damage and given that there's countless ways to protect him that's way too fast of a clock for most decks to interact with. His passive is also utterly bonkers in combo decks since it enables you to abuse things like Karn, the Great Creator + Ancestral Statue/Guardians of Koilos. Cast Tezzeret, Master of the Bridge, cast Karn, the Great Creator for free, grab a stack of 50 Ancestral Statue/Guardians of Koilos, cast them all for free and then activate his +2 to kill. Super mindless 2 card combo that only costs 6 mana and it's playing nothing but objectively powerful cards. Teferi and Karn are both stupidly overpowered as standalone threats so you don't care in the slightest if you have to draw and play them on their own outside of the combo. So the fact that they also combo together to instantly defeat any number of adversaries is pure upside.
His -3 and -8 are mostly trinket text but Regrowth has plenty of uses and so it's not worthless by any means. It's just that his other modes are so powerful that you rarely find the need to use them. Much like Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver the "ultimate" is actually the + ability since it kills too fast for the big - ability to matter. Again, it's possible that you'll tick down for 8 every now and then but mostly you'll be ticking up twice, hitting the table for 16 and killing everyone outright while sitting behind things like Baleful Strix, Ensnaring Bridge or a slew of Thopter tokens from Thopter Foundry + Sword of the Meek.
May 26, 2019Posted in: MultiplayerQuote from bleedin_eyeball »
Has anyone built a deck with these three cards here? What did it look like?
Leovold, Emissary of Trest
Narset, Parter of Veils
These are my preferred Wheel enablers. Narset, Parter of Veils is duuuuuuuuuuuuuumb.
May 5, 2019Posted in: MultiplayerQuote from user-100003797 »Any chance for a budget version of the Deck?
As far as Hatebear decks are concerned there's countless ways to build the deck so it mostly depends on what you own and and what will work in your meta. Still, in general you should be sticking to the following cards:
Flagstones of Trokair
Cavern of Souls
Ugin's Conjurant (+ Celestial Kirin)
Chalice of the Void
Mother of Runes
Swords to Plowshares
Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
Spirit of the Labyrinth
Containment Priest (+ Eldrazi Displacer)
Tomik, Distinguished Advokist
Thorn of Amethyst
Sphere of Resistance
Rest in Peace
Recruiter of the Guard
Eidolon of Rhetoric
Eldrazi Displacer (+ Containment Priest)
Grasp of Fate
Aura of Silence
Celestial Kirin (+ Ugin's Conjurant)
Ravages of War
Blade of Selves
May 5, 2019Posted in: Multiplayer
Celestial Conjurant HatebearsMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards Lands (24)
4x Gemstone Caverns
4x Ancient Tomb
4x Flagstones of Trokair
4x Ugin's Conjurant
4x Mother of Runes
4x Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
4x Stoneforge Mystic
4x Recruiter of the Guard
2x Vryn Wingmare
4x Celestial Kirin
4x Aether Vial
4x Thorn of Amethyst
1x Umezawa's Jitte
With the recent printing of Ugin's Conjurant we now have a creature-based Armageddon in the form of the Celestial Kirin + Ugin's Conjurant combo. Play Celestial Kirin, immediately cast Ugin's Conjurant for X=0, destroy all lands, easy. What makes this combo exciting is the fact that it enables you to curve Thalia, Guardian of Thraben/Thorn of Amethyst into Vryn Wingmare while still casting your "Armageddon" on curve. Prior, you had to choose between fielding disruptive threats such as Thalia/Wingmare and game-ending bombs like 'Geddon because you realistically can't cast the latter when it costs 6 mana in your 20-24 land deck. This makes it a potent addition to these "Thorn of Amethyst" archetypes.
The cool thing about these decks is how fast they can lock spell-based decks out of the game. Ancient Tomb enables turn 1 Thorn of Amethyst or Chalice of the Void (if you want to go that route) and Gemstone Caverns enables turn 1 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Thorn of Amethyst or Chalice of the Void (again, if you want to go that route). From there you can cast any disruptive spell on turn 2 or tutor for your Ugin's Conjurant with Recruiter of the Guard if you still need one. Subsequently, you can turn 3 Armageddon to virtually lock up the game or sandbag it until later if you think that you can get away with it. Lastly, all you have to do is beat creatures with your Mother of Runes and Umezawa's Jitte which isn't a problem.
This deck benefits immensely from the free multiplayer mulligan and will only further improve if the London mulligan system is adopted. Between Ugin's Conjurant and Recruiter of the Guard you have 8 ways of reliably finding an Ugin's Conjurant so all you need to do is mull for a Kirin or even keep your 7 if you think that you can win without one.
As for the lands, creatures and spells it doesn't really matter what you run. I posted a stock Hatebears deck but even if you don't have an optimal build it should still work. You could push the spirit theme with cards like Spirit of the Labyrinth and Eidolon of Rhetoric, you could field different kinds of Hatebears (think Grand Abolisher and Aven Mindcensor) on and on and on. 24x Plains would work just fine but I also like showcasing what my optimal manabase would look like.
This is the best home for the combo that I can think of and I mostly wanted it bring to the attention of anyone who wasn't aware of it.
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Sep 23, 2015Posted in: Cz Blog
Ah, sorry, this is actually going to be a multiplayer set review :). As such I'm not especially interested in how the cards perform in competitive duel environments.
Jan 18, 2014Prid3 posted a message on Nykson's Back: The Power of Nykthos in Casual Multiplayer MagicPosted in: Cz Blog
The land just isn't for me...
Take it from someone who's played creatureless, Cabal Coffers-based decks for years; you'd be surprised. A card this powerful and flexible isn't going to go down in value and it's not going to get worse as the overall card pool increases. You might regret not grabbing them while they're still 7-8 bucks. Creatures may not be your thing now but you never know how your meta might change.
Jan 17, 2014Posted in: Cz Blog
Cloudgoat Ranger and such are undervalued in general. That being said this card isn't exactly the same thing. It can still die to a Doom Blade at 0 benefit. I'm not holding that against it or anything but I mean there's a distinct difference between this guy and Spectral Procession.
Jan 17, 2014Prid3 posted a message on Nykson's Back: The Power of Nykthos in Casual Multiplayer MagicPosted in: Cz Blog
In regards to land removal; which is where overpowered lands can fail you...I used to be able to play Glacial Chasm with no fear, now I commonly have to be concerned about Acidic Slime, Sylvan Primordial, and Terastodon. My playgroup might not be investing in the greatest land bases of all time but they are definitely spending a lot of effort into removing them from others.
I've kind of derailed; take this all as just an anecdote from one meta in particular. I completely agree with you that adding 2-4 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx into most multiplayer decks is going to be a drastic upgrade every time, even in my meta. This land is the real deal; use it with enchantment decks, use it with Lurking Predators decks, use it with fish, use it with elves, use it with monstrous creatures, and definitely use it with Extort, Pestilence, and Gray Merchant decks.
I just want to stress that I would happily play Nykthos in these kinds of metas. Acidic Slime isn't much of a problem card because it only kills 1 thing. There's some give and take with Terastodon as well. Still, have you ever played games games where Sylvan Primordial just gets cheated/ramped out, copied, cloned and revived ad nauseam? That card often feelds more oppressive than Primetime to me because not only do you fetch 2-3x the quantity of lands but you're also destroying them in the process. It only takes 1 cast to be able to Genesis + Miren, the Moaning Well him every turn around here. He blocks basically anything in the air and the same goes for most things on the ground. He's also a virtual draw spell at times because he can empty your deck of lands in a flash.
When the game is focused on Sylvan Primordial I want to be the person ramping him out first. I want to play a deck with Utopia Sprawl, Strangleroot Geist, Predator Ooze, Thrun, the Last Troll, Arbor Colossus, etc. If I can get mine out first then I won't need Nykthos because I'm going to get like 5-7 Forests 2-3 times and once that happens I'm not going to need it. Still, I can't be playing catch-up once he starts coming down.
Jan 17, 2014Posted in: Cz Blog
The most comical aspect of the card is how impossibly difficult it is to misplay with it. Unless you're a sack of potatoes you basically can't mess this card up. You don't have to weigh the risks of attacking and blocking like you sometimes do with say Precinct Captain. There are none. The whole world is your oyster. I am blown away with this card's power-level. First Boros Reckoner, now this. White is sitting pretty at 3 CMC.
Jan 16, 2014Posted in: Cz Blog
To give you an idea the crux of my argument is that the card has "Indestructible," "each upkeep" and "draw a card" written on it. For it to be completely unplayable in a multiplayer setting it would have to be pretty damn bad. At 4 mana I think that it's a perfectly serviceable option. Even if you're just playing it in a regular deck it's still cantripping all of your dudes. Not great, sure, but not unplayable either (assuming that you trigger her somewhat reliably).
Jan 15, 2014Posted in: Cz BlogRhystic Study doesn't always work but it's pretty hard to pay to stop it when there's Ghostly Prison and Pendrell Mists on the table; which I typically see in these decks. Ephara, God of Polis wouldn't be my choice but I see what you're saying. I'll check back later when there are more cards spoiled.
One thing that I'll say is that you can't just hold the bar against the best possible card in the slot. RS is good but at some point you realize that people aren't going to run 4 in every Blue deck ever. If I compared everything to the best-in-slot alternative then my review would probably look something along the lines of "everything is unplayable except for Boros Reckoner." That's boring and it doesn't really help any one. The fact of the matter is that people are going to want to play with new cards to mix things up. I'm trying to help people make informed decisions and avoid obvious traps.
For example, I can see a world where you play with or against a "competitive" pillow-fort deck that has Ephara, God of the Polis in it. There's enough going on there to make it work. Conversely, I think that Champion of Stray Souls will basically never improve a deck as much as any number of alternatives could. I see very little potential for that type of card to be successful.
If we assumed that every deck has R.Study and Kokusho, the Evening Star or Wurmcoil Engine then obviously this kind of analysis is trivial. Still, since we don't like in a utopian society where every player has an unlimited budget and access to every card there is some merit to discussing a fair number of different options.
Jan 15, 2014Posted in: Cz BlogQuote from Miaou
I don't like that discard takes away the potential blowouts of Magic.
Play Bonfire of the Damned :3.
Jan 15, 2014Posted in: Cz Blog
Rhystic Study isn't a lock to always be an amazing draw spell. It has a lot of potential but plenty of people have told me that it hasn't worked out well for them. I'm not saying that the card is amazing but I wouldn't be shocked if it saw play in defensive decks that could churn out tokens every turn if needed. It's resilient to removal and it doubles as a win condition. I've seen worse cards do better things.
Nov 6, 2013Posted in: Cz Blog
If your opponents had removal for the Prison aspects of the decks they could easily beat the deck. The underlying problem is that Artifact/Enchantment removal is grossly underplayed in general. It's not that people don't have options. They do. The problem is that none of those options interacts favorably with Bridge/Scales.
That's not how I see it personally. Damage spells, to me, are there help everyone maintain their sanity by ending games at a reasonable pace. The game virtually ends when a Prison lock is established in my mind. The eventual act of killing everyone is almost entirely win-more.
I don't agree. I think that Prison decks are good, Discard + Prison decks are good and that Discard decks are bad.
Being silent is the lesser of many evils in my opinion. It's not about finding the "good" solution, they all suck, being silent is just slightly "less sucky" than the other ones.
People are passive until you attack at which point people seem to prefer to attack the instigator rather than the defendant. Pretty lame actually. You have to do it and blindly hope that people will make the right decision but I mean it's a dubious gamble at best.
I feel like you're just talking to yourself here but yeah that's more or less how it goes when you play with people who haven't memorized every card in the game (i.e. the vast majority of MTG players). I usually play with some number of "experts" who know their stuff but I mean when you play with 6+ people there's just no way that they're all going to have a firm grasp on the overall card pool.
Well I mean to me it's all about spells and inference. Playing a land shouldn't immediately spell out what your deck is but I mean no one plays a turn 1 Shrieking Affliction "randomly." You should be able to pick up on what a deck is trying to do after a spell or two and base your aggression from there.
While I hear what you're saying at the end of the day "doing nothing" is usually a worse alternative than "doing something" if you're playing around theoretically powerful plays which would probably screw you over either way.
I couldn't hear you over the sound of how awesome I am.
It's ignorance moreso than anything else. You basically just have to hope that people will eventually get better at the game. They always do after all. The hardest part is breaking people in for the first 10 or so big sessions. The game isn't easy to learn. Once they stop being ignorant even the sketchiest players start to develop better habits in my experience.
The main thing is education. When I break a new player in the only thing that I care about is the fundamentals of the game. "Why are you casting spells and then attacking?" "Did you realize you could do X then Y to ensure Z?" "Why play a land and then cast a draw spell?" "Why are you tapping your lands like that, wouldn't it be better to leave X up instead?" That kind of thing. Nothing that I say has anything to do with strategy or getting people to rally against Bob the Combo player. Everything is 100% mechanics focused. Priority 1 is to get people to start taking the game more seriously and to start playing it with some degree of competency.
Basically people need to get good enough to care before anything can realistically improve. Because of this I do everything in my power to teach people how to play at a reasonably competitive level. Not like PT but FNM at the very least. People care about stuff that they're good at and people want to win stuff that they care about. By making them good at the game I trick them into wanting to win (in some sense anyways). If you want to win, well, eventually you start making better decisions about how to go about doing it.
Nov 3, 2013Posted in: Cz BlogQuote from Indalecio »You seem to imply that discard strategies could be completely ignored and it would still work, because of their ineffectiveness.
No that's not at all what I'm saying. I'm saying that if N players are playing creatures and 1 player is tapping out to annoy them with discard then that player doesn't figure to live very long.
Quote from Indalecio »In conjunction with damage AND prison I just don't think Discard is any "underwhelming" strategy, like at all. It always results on either the discard player getting killed, or the rest of the table getting killed. If people need to set their own plan and strategy aside for the common cause of killing one specific player from turn 1 then it has to be because said player is playing obnoxiously.
Except you're falsely attributing the success of the deck to its Discard aspects rather than its Prison ones. Prison decks win games and oppress tables. Discard decks don't. When a Prison + Discard deck succeeds it's typically not because of the Discard aspect.
Quote from Indalecio »And I mean, this is not an interactive deck we are talking about. Really, can you ever compete with it if you lack artifact/enchantment removal?
... to kill the Prison elements.
Quote from Indalecio »I'm sure you always have 4 Disks in all of your decks...
Quote from Indalecio »Pressure is the only way, but this is where you always find people doing some other business (ignoring their incoming doom basically), and with that in mind you can't go full-out anymore because said players would attack you as well.
Given the choice of sitting back and losing or trying to win I go for trying to win. If the other players want to attack me and let the Prison deck win then that's their prerogative. I've long since given up on relying on people to do the right thing or make smart decisions. Far more often than not they don't. They make moronic, idiotic, baseless decisions that will 100% result in their demise. That's people for you.
Quote from Indalecio »If everybody could turn their creatures sideways and kill off the discard player before he drops the prison cards then it would be easy, but in MP games I´ve experienced, people are either too slow to react or blind to recognize a threat before it's too late.
Yes. People are idiots. Do your part and do what's right. If no one else does, well, tough. That's life. The only thing that you can control are your actions and your decisions. Make them count.
Quote from Indalecio »Why should I step up and turn all my creatures sideways against this player if all I´ll get back is attacks from other players?
Because that's how Magic works. You take the line that can win you the game if it pans out. There's no point in sitting back and slowly losing. I mean, what is your proposed alternative? Let the Prison deck establish its lock and win? That's better? Why are you so afraid to lose first? What does the pecking order matter? Why wouldn't you play to your outs? Play to win? Like every action that you take should be a calculated risk taken in an attempt to win the game. If people are blind morons at least you did your part and did your best and took the line that could have won you the game.
Quote from Indalecio »I need a couple of blockers to secure that, but then it gives more time to the discard player to put his strategy online.
Because you don't need blockers. You don't need anything. You only convince yourself that you can't attack because you can't live with the idea of being vulnerable. You can't live with the idea that decisions that you make could have serious, negative consequences. It took me a long time to learn how to overcome these primal fears but this isn't a God damned duel where you have any semblance of control over the game. You're a worthless little peon in the grand scheme of things. Stop acting like the world will come crumbling down the second that you lower the shields. Do what's right. Make the smart decision that could win the game.
Quote from Indalecio »Bloodchief Ascension, Ankh to trigger it, even Megrim/Caress in conjunction with Anvil of Bogardan, supported by Ensnaring Bridge and sorceries cleaning the board... How can it matter that you can still play your topdeck card assuming no land, when you take X damage each upkeep anyway because of diverse Racks on the board?
So basically the same archetype that I've been proposing for 8 or 9 years. Take a wild guess as to who might have experience with that kind of brew? Try playing that deck regularly without Bridge and/or Noetic Scales. Tell me how far you get. I'm telling you that the only aspect of that deck that's powerful is the Prison aspect of it. Why? Because I've literally been playing that deck for like 9 years and the only games that it wins are games where the Bridge sticks early and stays in play. Period.
Quote from Indalecio »... alongside with Bottomless Pit and co. it just becomes a clock. Noetic Scales my friend.
You're listing that cards that no one other than me has realistically ever suggested and I'd be willing to wager pretty much anything that you're only aware of them because of posts that I've made.
Quote from Indalecio »Of course, your fate is not sealed by turn 2 but you can get there quite quickly.
You get there are as soon as you stick a Prison card and a constant discard engine. End of story. It only works because of the Prison elements. The discard aspect of the deck is completely worthless without them.
Quote from Indalecio »Difference between that and a Grave Pact deck?
Are you asking me what's the difference between an Ensnaring Bridge and a Grave Pact deck? What does my article say about either card?
Quote from Indalecio »About the discard lands discussion, I don't understand why it wouldn't occur.
I'm not saying that it wouldn't occur. I'm saying that most global discard costs 3 or more mana and none of it specifically targets lands. Most of it is "player's choice" and a very small selection of it is random. Very few decks should get completely cheesed out due to mana screw.
Quote from Indalecio »I would still refer discard as one of the top nemesis of creature-based decks...
How many of those discard decks function successfully without some sort of Prison element?
I'm going to share a story with you. I actually had a 3 player session tonight. Unusually small for me, I know, but hey, Magic is Magic. Anyways our games were me and my 2 friends. One posts here, his name is Carthage, you might have seen some of his posts. He's a good player. He has a lot of experience. We were all playing with his decks. The other friend is a total newb who just got into the game. Anyways, I lost every game tonight of the 6 that we played. Most of them I was out first. Why? I was making the right decisions and my newb friend was making the wrong ones. I only have 10, 000 characters so I gotta keep this brief and stick to 1 game. My friend Imprinted a Scourglass on a Protoype Portal and then cast Sword of the Meek. I would attack that player knowing that A) Scourglass would wreck both of us and B) no one plays Sword without playing Thopter Foundry. I attack this player and eventually get him down to 2. He has 1 turn to rip something... Thopter Foundry. Great. Those 2 points? The other guy could have done them ten times over. He had no outs to Scourglass nor Thopter Sword but he made moronic decisions and focused me even though he could beat my fair deck in theory. We obviously both lost... by 2 life points. Had he made a right decision at any point I probably win. Because he made every decision wrong I lost. Most of our games looked like that for the rest of the night. I was just playing with spare "hand-me-down" decks mind you, nothing "good" that I would normally want to play, but I still got ****ed over because people make bad choices all of the time. That's Magic for you. Now, I could look back on these losses and bitch about the players, my decks, etc. I don't though. I know that, at the end of the day, I took the lines that could win me the game. Yeah, sure, I came up short because the other guy had no idea what he was doing. I know that I did my part though. I played well. As long as I continue to play well and make decisions I will succeed in the long run. You can't let setbacks and bad experiences cripple you into become a passive, worthless little pussy who's afraid to lose some games. You have to take the risks needed to actually win games even if you're playing some dumb ****ter deck against a full fledged combo deck. Like I said my decisions took me to within 2 life points of beating a deck that I had no right sitting down against. Do I wish that the other player had done something right that game? Yeah, obviously. That being said I can't reflect on what happened and be anything other than proud of how and why I played the games the way that I did. I recognized that I wouldn't be able to win later and took steps to win "now." Even though I failed it wasn't due to personal misplay nor bad decision making. My damage goldfish was slower than his Scourglass lock into Thoper Sword. No player could have sat down on that table in my seat and won the game assuming that both other players played exactly the same.
Before you ask I've stopped trying to convince other players to attack obvious threats. Did it when I was younger, don't feel like doing it any more for a host of reasons. I could have won multiple games if I just completely manipulated the newbie player into attacking my friend Carthage with me. No doubt about it. That being said those tactics do more harm than good in the long run in my opinion and so I've long-since stopped employing them.
Oh, I still think that 3 player FFAs are the work of Satan. Just throwing that out there.
Nov 1, 2013I don't agree that discard requires any maindeck cards. I don't agree with any aspect your assessment actually. As someone who's been playing Black decks for the better part of 13 years I can tell you that there are tons of reasons why Discard is pretty bad.Posted in: Cz Blog
First of all discard can't stop topdecks and each opponent gets to topdeck a card each and every turn. In that sense I don't understand why you're suggesting that anyone needs maindeck answers to discard. Decks cannot function? Why not? You're still drawing cards and casting spells. How is that not a functioning deck? Now, is it fun to discard spells? Nope. But like... what is fun? Having your creatures die to removal? Get countered? Have your stuff milled? Take damage? Is anything "fun" other than favorable (for you) interactions from your opponents? There is nothing "negative" that's fun in Magic. Losing anything for any reason sucks. I don't see what makes discard so special. I find discard to be incredibly weak because it doesn't affect anything on the board, it doesn't address topdecks and it's a deaddraw later on when everyone is in topdeck mode. It has tons of weaknesses in that sense. It's not at all the same thing as having 90% of your spells countered. You're drawing a spell ~50% of the time and that spell is immune to discard. Counters and removal could interact with it however. There are massive trade-offs that you're ignoring.
Here's what usually happens in practice. N players are drawing cards that they can immediately play whereas 1 player is eventually doing the same except that he's ripping into discard spells which are, for all intents and purposes, pretty worthless after a certain point. Moreover that player is doing things that actively annoy people and that don't impact the board. That player proceeds to get crushed. It's not a winning strategy. Your topdecks are weaker, you make everyone your enemy and you can never change the fact that people are drawing a card each and every turn that they can immediately play. Since that's going to be a spell ~50% of the time there's just no way that discard figures to oppress a multiplayer table.
With respect to discarding lands, again, I don't get it. With what? 3+ mana spells at best? Even then for 3 mana you're forcing one chosen discard at best if you're talking about a multi-target spell. That's probably something against the all 8 drop deck but I mean that's hardly oppressive against a "normal" deck. Good global discard only shows up at 3+ CMC and I mean it's not like you're casting a global Hymn to Tourach for 4 mana or anything. Hitting lands... I don't see it. What cards are you even referencing? It would basically have to be a single target spell such as Hymn or Mind Twist to actually mana screw someone. Unnerve and Necrogen Mists aren't going to get the job done.
And like, again, all you have to do is discard spells, keep lands and topdeck spells. That's how you beat discard. That's how you've always beaten discard. You just pitch your expensive stuff, establish your mana base and beat the decks by having strong topdecks and a higher threat density. You should only get mana screwed if you make poor decisions that rely on ripping lands every turn or some crap.
I dunno, I'm probably in the minority but I'm not in the business of telling people that they should avoid underpowered strategies. The only discard spell that I've seen be somewhat problematic at times is Myojin of Night's Reach because you can't really interact with that kind of effect. Unnerve is annoying but I mean no deck needs a maindeck answer to it. Most of the other discard isn't really even playable or it works in specific archetypes. Stuff like Smallpox, Pox, Necrogen Mistss, etc. are bad in most decks but work well in Prison decks but I mean those aren't the same thing as generic discard decks in my mind.
Actually I think that I have a better way to explain it. People are always going to play decks that are annoying and bad. There isn't anything that you or I can do to stop that. I personally don't see these decks as a problem though because they rarely-if-ever win games. That's the big equalizer that serves to keep them in check. The problem decks, in my mind, are the ones that are annoying and extremely powerful. Those are the ones that can make the game tough to play at times. If someone wants to play a mono-Red burn deck that kills one player and loses 100% of the time, so be it. Yes it's moronic that someone would choose to run something like that but I mean you can't stop people from playing bad king-maker decks. It's unreasonable to expect all players of all skill levels to adopt the "all goodstuffs all the time" mantra that people such as myself have adopted. Mill, Burn, Discard, Counter, etc. decks annoy people, sure, but the fact that they're inherently weak strategies means that you can't really moan about them too too much. I don't think that it's right to just say "only player creatures and removal because that's fun" because the reality is that it's not. Different people like different things. You have to use a light touch and give people as much freedom as possible. The purpose of this article, for me, is to hopefully keep oppressively powerful strategies from dominating a table while also addressing the common concern of "time." If a deck doesn't consistently win in a non-interactive and unfun way then it's fine. If a deck doesn't hemorrhage time then it's fine. I'm not going to nitpick over every little thing that's somewhat unfun because I don't think that anyone should.
Also, before anyone addresses my comment about "time" cards, I would basically say "keep your mouth shut until you've played a game with 3+ active Tops with shuffle effects." I realize that some of you have had a 1 and MAYBE even 2 Top game but I'm doubting that many of you have ever seen a 6 Top game. No one who has would question this concern for an instant. Plan for the worst and hope for the best. Even if my meta is unusually large there's enough 4+ player metas out there and no one should ever have to sit through a 4+ Top game. The fact that card is expensive and not always played is irrelevant because it could be. "Ban lists" aren't about what people are doing but what they could be doing.
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