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  • 1

    posted a message on [[SCD]] Library of Alexandria
    Quote from calibretto »
    For sure. I wasn't trying to imply that he is somehow wrong, just that it's an unpopular opinion in the cube community, especially on these forums. Cube is what you make it and everyone has their preferences. We can all offer advice based on our own experiences, but at the end of the day preferring X to Y in cube will never be wrong if that choice is what you and your group prefer.

    The apologies are mine, it seems I came off rudely without intent. Sorry for that. I was trying to reiterate the point. And also note how LoA lacks an easy comparison to make due it's unique effect, unlike how Talismans and Signets or various 4 CMC counters can be compared. Due to that, I think it makes it hard for newer players to familiarize themselves with a modernized/restrained version of the mechanic to easily recognize how broken the legacy version of it is.
    Posted in: Cube Card and Archetype Discussion
  • 1

    posted a message on [THB] Woe Strider— SCG preview
    Goat token? Lorwyn Returned 100% confirmed!!!

    Elsewise, in Hellenic, Promethean and Egyptian-Greco mythology goats where a common offering to the Gods to show devotion when asking for boons/favours, often due to them producing furs, milk and meat, making them a prized asset for poorer families of the time.

    Sheep is also sometimes how followers of a cause are referred to and similar insults were common in those times. Similarly, many religions referred to their leaders and advocates as their 'flocks' or 'herds' and themselves as 'shepherds' and 'farmers', which may indicate that this person once was a leader who did awful things, who in death has been consumed by their hatred.

    Either or works, definitely more flavour than the original seer either way XD
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 2

    posted a message on No story/lore for Theros
    Quote from Jiyor »
    Quote from DJK3654 »
    Quote from Jiyor »
    We could...but that would involve WotC hiring people based on merit and not solely on their gender and/or ethnicity to check a box for forced inclusivity and diversity.

    Oh, come on dude. Don't start with that whole tirade here. Can you put your favourite toy away for just five minutes please?

    Oh your right... i forgot that only WotC employees can say whatever they want on company time that has nothing to do with the game. But here on a free forum people cant voice concerns because it doesn’t agree with WotC.
    I guess continuing to ignore it will totally make it go away...
    I will say i surprised you didn’t just report me to the forum masters like they want you to.

    To be fair, the only reason I haven't reported it, is because the mods got there first.

    As an affiliate member of the National Autistic Society and an ASD person, I find your comments rude, divisive and completely unevidenced. I'd ask you to apologize for your comments, but I doubt there would be any sincerity in an apology. And no, this isn't a free for all forum, it's a forum for discussing from a variety of viewpoints, elements of the MTG game, it's associated properties and the decisions taken by WOTC and its staff. Promoting your personal ideologues - political or otherwise - and insulting other members, or the staff of MTGS or WOTC for elements of their personage, is not debate, but simple rudeness.

    On Topic: I agree with most users here, that the lore quality since War of the Spark has been diminished. I am not a personal fan of Theros or Elspeth, but believe from a narrative standpoint that simply glossing over important plot-hooks designed to interlink with the War of the Spark story is a poor choice and inconsiderate of the audience.

    I feel that WoTC's handling of narrative in recent years has greatly declined, from the way in which a promising conclusion to the Bolas Arc was mishandled (your mileage may vary), lacking the sense of scale and casualty that much of the audience demanded. I feel that the rush to then have characters with promising future narratives quickly killed off (Dovin), potentially in an attempt to react to criticism, is a short-sighted and damaging move for the narrative. I feel the retcon of Chandra, and the hasty retcon of the retcon was damaging to the brand of the product and damaged audience goodwill.

    I feel also that a large portion of current narrative problems comes from a lack of understanding on WoTC's part of how to handle flagship characters, lacking an understanding of which parts of the audience favour which characters and 'why', relying too heavily on focus groups and selective surveys and not enough on the direct opinions of those invested into the characters. I think they also have misunderstood what their audience wants, associating the popularity of a worlds settings and lore (and that of it's characters), with the direct sale of cards (playing pieces), rather than using the metric of engagement (how people are interacting with a product). I believe this leads to short-sighted, business led decisions where sales and profit are placed as emphasis over storytelling and play experience, though who would be to blame for this is impossible to know without pulling back the curtain on WoTC/Hasbro's internal workings.

    I feel the move to smaller stories could be positive, as while I didn't enjoy the story of Eldraine, I do think it was reasonably well-handled for what it was, and giving chances to aspiring creatives is always something I advocate for. Similiarly, I believe a story regarding the events of Theros using the same smaller narrative would of been brilliant, both for the greater sense of narrative scope and engagement with Theros/Elspeth's fans. I believe WoTC has missed an opportunity here, over-correcting from the longer, multi-year spanning story of Bolas machinations into a removal of much lore based materials that provide an anchor for players emotional investment beyond monetary speculation of card values or collecting specific playing pieces.

    I also agree that the short stories of Amonkhet were a great way to engage with players and entirely suitable for the new 'single set narratives' that WoTC seems to want to pursue, but has failed to capitalize on. While not to my taste, the format of these mini-stories provided scale, lore pieces and narrative pacing while being open-ended enough due to their smaller size that other authors can make additive content to follow them without being railroaded or contradicting the grand premises other authors have designed.

    TLDR: WoTC needs to focus on more Eldraine like or Amonkhet like stories for single-set worlds, and save ebooks/paperbacks for stories spanning multiple sets, which should be planned and written ahead of time, rather than during set design, and to integrate writers and lore experts into the project team as full members so that narrative doesn't contradict itself, and works to amplify the tonality and themes of a given set, rather than running alongside or counter to it.

    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 1

    posted a message on [CUBE][MH1] Urza, Lord High Artificier
    Don't normally post in this forum much, but my group proxied this in the Nonsense to test it as we've a dedicated W/U artifact shell for it to slide into. What we found was:

    Without the artifact deck: Essentially an expensive wall that generates a blue Llanowar Elves. While people could use it's 5 cost ability they'd normally have better cards to play, and it obviously has the risk factor of hitting a land as much as an Kederekt Leviathan. Was ok, but non-artifact players quickly passed on it alot.

    With the artifact deck: Hahahaha. This guy gets pretty funny if you've got plenty of tokens kicking about. Essentially works like the golem creating cards, with a mana sink to funnel excess mana into at the end of your opponent's turn, which while hitting a land can be awful, dropping a Darksteel Forge or Scourglass can be hilarious. However, it didn't do much proactively outside of that, and if it gets nuked off the board it's done little other than make a golem.

    I don't think I'd recommend it to anyone not running an artifact deck of some type, and even then, I don't think it would replace Whirler Rogue in it. It's more like a mid-tier piece for artifact deck, or a flashy blocked outside of it. He does really like the Shaeeli cards though... just saying Wink

    Posted in: Cube Card and Archetype Discussion
  • 2

    posted a message on Monocolour Devotion Cube
    Quote from Dunharrow »
    I am just trying to figure out how I make it draftable by 8 people if I only make 5 archetypes. It feels like 2 people would draft unopposed alone in their colours, which is not ideal.

    So I am trying to figure out how to make additional archetypes that can be drafted. Do I go with thinks like Wilt-Leaf Liege? I am really unsure, which is why I am here for help. I am afraid of making 2-colour archetypes and then ruining the point of the whole thing.

    That's why I said it was a thought experiment. If it works, it should be repeatable. You want multiple deckarchetypes in each colour that overlap 'within' the colour, but not with other colours. For example, White Weenie, White Tokens, Soldiers, +1/+1 counters and Flying Matters all easily overlap within white, but can also be their own decks. Likewise green can do Elves, Beasts, Ramp, Aggro, Pod? (I think it's called Pod). Red has goblins and burn off the top of my head.

    Plus, the idea was to test if it's doable to build the archetypes in monocolour so it's easier to figure out which archetypes could easily be supported in mono-cube without having too much accidental overlap with other colours.

    The user before did list many good suggestions for Chroma/Devotion like cards. These are a good way of encouraging rather than forcing players to draft monocolour. Similarly, there is likely to be cases where people really need to draft a two colour deck, so when they do it should still be manageable.

    The two main reasons I see people go for multicolour decks in cube, psychologically speaking, is a desire to play ''all the best'' cards, mixed with what is often a high level of access to manafixing. Naturally this varies from cube to cube, but the player profiles that WOTC uses do come into draft, and understanding them does help: Make your big curve toppers look splashy for Johnny, include a handful of fun/unique/qwerky cards for Timmy, and then drop some powerful pieces along the curves for Spike.

    I'd say make a draft cube with what you know you want in it on something like CubeTutor, test it, see where things get nudged into multicolour, and figure out if there is a regular number of mono-colour decks per average in say, 5 drafts, and if not, which cards really pull people across colours. Plus 50 fun points if you do it in person for more group-involved fun.
    Posted in: The Cube Forum
  • 1

    posted a message on Monocolour Devotion Cube
    The best advice I can give you as an individual is too look at the draft enviroments of Theros block and Shadowmoor block.

    Theros has Devotion, which encourages monocolour play. Shadowmoor has a lot of hybrid which... doesn't encourage monocolour play.

    Removing much manafixing will, naturally, force players to play with a more colour identity mindset. Similarly, putting in cards with 4-6 hybrid mana as their costs will encourage people to diversify in an attempt to more easily play those cards.

    You need a better mix of hard mana cards and hybrid cards. The big splashes should be the top end, feature pieces. For instance, Benalish Marshal encourages more monocolour play than Hearthfire Hobgoblin does, simply for the fact one can only be cast with white, while the other encourages me to seek red cards too.

    To really reward players, you'd be looking for 'Chroma' cards, both figuratively and literally. That and Devotion both reward monocolour play. Incidently mana fixing such as Seething Song can also encourage monocolour play in the correct enviroment.

    Similarly, it's also worthwhile to minimise the overlap of deck archetypes between colours, which is a little odd as it's the exact opposite of what you normally want to do. So pick five themes/archetypes you want, and then try to build each in monoclour. That's a good thought experiment for testing and figuring out how to make this cube work.

    Speaking of which, test regularly. Smaller, tested changes are much better than sweeping, speculative changes, as when something doesn't work it's a lot easier to figure out why.

    I wish you all the best of luck, and am sure someone more experienced with Cube may be able to be more useful than me XD
    Posted in: The Cube Forum
  • 2

    posted a message on Just how powerful is Urza?
    The TLDR for those just joining:

    Urza is basically the Batman of the MTG franchise, with the same caveats, story templating, moral ambiquity and everything else that people adore about DC's 'Dark Knight'.

    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • 1

    posted a message on War of The Spark Trailer
    Flipwalkers, and things that can activate into planeswalkers have the wrong flavor: people aren't becoming planeswalkers, they're having their sparks taken.

    Not entirely, people have just been thinking about it backwards. Think more like this or that. Cards with two effects that when depleted of loyalty counters, are then flipped into Legendary Creatures.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • 1

    posted a message on (GRN) Guilds of Ravnica General Discussion
    Quote from 5colors »
    That works better and again Jace still isn't the main character like you claim. Since RtR/Origins he's shared with the other gatewatch members, not really "Iron Man" movies but "Avengers" movies. Which has been the issue creative is trying to fix now, they have been making more Avengers movies and not enough "solo" films.

    Yeah, however one thing that you seem to have forgotten...

    Alike the MCU storyline people aren't following this storyline in a vacuum. Peoples complaint isn't so much the frequency of seeing Jace, it's the frequency of his necessity to the overall, long term plotline.

    Jace was one the first five walkers to appear in Lorwyn. At that time, they heavily promoted Jace to an audience that didn't particularly like him, and was more interested in the other four walkers. After that, we had Alara which introduced new thematic walkers (and the return of Bolas). However, that still shoehorned in Jace using a connection to Tezzeret and Bolas. Then Zendikar, which... shoehorned in Jace to the detriment of the story (as I view it).

    Then we jumped over to Mirrodin, which brought us reprieve in that we had no Jace, the return and adaption of a favoured enemy and a favoured setting, and a lot of people hated it. The reason? Venser's entire storyline at the time was criticised for being 'too much like Jace'. That may have been forgetten in time as people retrospectively interpret his character, but it was a criticism that was made.

    Then we got Innistrad, which was a reprieve from Jace. Momentarily...

    Because then we returned to Ravnica, and low and behold, Jace was front and center. What irked so many is that he then became a living MacGuffin. He also (as some view it) stole the literal identity of Ravnica into his own character as a shallow attempt to make people like him. It backfired. More people ended up hating him for being a living macguffin that damaged the identity of their favourite plane.

    Theros then gave us a reprieve from Jace, but not from Gideon who was a very polarising character at the time, with some for and some against. Notably most of those against disliked his (then) similarities to Jace in the way his story was handled, which early on telegraphed that the Gatewatch would become a thing.

    Then Tarkir happened. Most people forgot the story of this because it handled time travel badly, did major retcon work to Bolas and Ugin (that angered just about everyone), and it's main protagonist was criticised as a lazy pastiche of elements of Jace and Gideon (who were both still disliked by the general audience). It also introduced the wedge plane everyone wanted... to immediately destroy that identity thanks to the Jace pastiche.

    During that time however we had side stories happening that was supposed to follow Ral. Unfortunately this quickly devolved into Jace + Jace, as he got shoehorned in there (with Gideon) in the worst plot setup for a set I've seen in a while, which wheeled into Eldrazikar. This is when the pattern really begins to set in: another fan favourite plane (not mine, I hate it), that involved Jace (or a pastiche of him), and involved a fan favourite setting being irrevocably destroyed or it's identity forever changing. This only fanned animosity for Jace, especially with the perceived ease he defeated the Eldrazi. Oh wait, what happens next...

    We go back to another fan favourite plane (also not mine, I hate it) and low and behold, Jace is there. Now previously, it's been one block on (Jace) and one block off (pastiche), but now they're just forcing him down the audience's throats. And low and behold, the core of the story is the plane's identity being irrevocably changed and Jace having a hand in it and/or being the one to solve the problem. Nevermind that you had Tamiyo there, the fact she was an afterthought as compared to Jace's necromantic booty obsession and the criminally overlooked Nahiri/Sorin story, in the end it all came down to 'Jace Kaioken x10'.

    From there we went to Kaladesh, and while supposed to be an artifact set involving rebellion, drama, social politics and everyone's (modern) favourite artifact baddie Tezzeret, even with a big Ajani plot point, most people criticised it for Jace. Because despite the fact he could of had no screentime, they had to shoehorn him in anyway. Oh and look, the pattern continues of plane everyone enjoys... with it's identity completely destroyed. Hmmm.

    Then we go to Amonkhet, another plane everyone loves the world of (despite it being a fascist military meritocracy). Now this one we 'knew' was going to be destroyed, so any audience member surprised here when it's completely torn asunder is just naive. In fact, it's main approval was watching the Gatewatch get bodied by Bolas, because people were generally sick of the Gatewatch at this point (yet notably only when it involved Jace). Gideon got substantial character development in this set that truly distinguished him from Jace and gained his own audience.

    From there we got Ixalan, which makes four Jace sets, yayyy. It also brought people pirates, so if you're a fan of those, great! If you're not? Sucks to be you! Sadly those pirates got Jace'd, which ruined the pirates for a considerable portion of their fans. We also got the return of Azor, a huge piece of fan service... that Jace exiled into plot irrelevance reminding everyone of how Jace disregards the general plot (being the GuffinPact). Notably Ixalan's biggest criticism is Jace and his superficial character-centric plot, while it's most applauded notion are the Pirates, Dinosaurs and White Vampires.

    From there we went to Dominaria, return to a plane people adore and with no Jace. And people went wild. They loved seeing the return of characters that were similar but distinct to the Gatewatch members. It capitalised on Gideon's improved character, continued Lilith's story, and didn't involve Jace... until it did, in the most criticised part of Dominaria, which is the Jace cameo. Which also added precisely nothing to the story as it was redundant in respect of the future Project Lightning Bug. Fortunately as Jace didn't stick around, Dominaria didn't have it's audience identity completely destroyed.

    Oh, nevermind, they rammed out a Spellbook thing based on Jace. Which received criticism because it could of been any other PW, but no, they had to ram Jace in, because you can't be allowed to forget that Jace is plot-armor superion of audience upset.

    Then we're back to Ravnica, and thank goth that there has been no Jace. We got to focus on the Guilds, and how things have changed precisely because Jace isn't in the one place he should be, and it's causing the systematic destruction of another fan favourite plane...

    And then we will have War of the Spark, where it's heavily suspected that instead of Ajani, who was originally set up to combat Bolas, we're going to quick swerve to Jace being the hero. But not after the entire identity and culture that the audience loves about Ravnica is completely destroyed. In a set that should be about a planeswalker war, instead it's increasingly likely to be all about a war over Jace's guildpact infused spark. So he can go on to be Guildpact of the Multiverse, because we needed an Adam Warlock Above All in MTG, that can be used to simply reset problems in the multiverse so nobody has to write convincing endings. And sure, it has parallels to Azor's naive rigidity and Liliana's selfish pursuit of her own goals despite the consequences, but it's also shallow.

    And yes, while there is going to be a new weatherlight, because Magic repeats it's story beats over and over with different gloss in the hope you don't notice, it's not unpredictable and isn't particularly fun for the audience, especially when a pattern has existed of destroying the fan favourite planes for a cheap emotional reaction now in trade for long term audience respect, investment and story potential.

    Case in point: Marvel made the same mistakes and had to run a series called Time Runs Out, and then Secret Wars 2015, so they could restore all their fan favourites (or adaptions of them) after angering many of their audience members. Similarly they did this with House of M as well in regards to their various mutant-X teams.

    Posted in: Magic Storyline
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