Magic Market Index for Nov 2nd, 2018
 
Magic Market Index for October 26th, 2018
 
Magic Market Index for October 12th, 2018
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from tronix »
    using a digital platform to reach a larger playerbase, and making gameplay more fluid and visually appealing isnt the same as 'esports'. sure it lends itself to being more attractive to watch in the event that it gets popular enough, but it isnt the point. its like saying blizzard designed hearthstone for esports, which makes zero sense. they simply made it as a more approachable game, capitalizing on one of their most profitable franchises (warcraft), that offered low investment/high replayability gameplay to the masses.


    To be exact, Hearthstone was never meant to be a serious game. It originated as a marketing gimmick to promote and keep the hype for a new World of Warcraft expansion, in principle similar to Fallout Shelter which was developed as a promotion game for Fallout 4. Iirc the original dev team was about 2 guys not even working full time. Then they realized that they by accident had established the probably easiest to maintain cash-cow in the history of PC gaming and Blizzard are not idiots, they know how to run a healthy franchise and are not dependent on short term profit.



    There are mainly 3 reasons why Hearthstone is so succesful and appealing to the masses.

    Polished User Experience
    This is something Blizzard absolutely excels at in all their games. It runs smoothly, relatively bug-free and everything looks gorgeous. More important, everything feels just right. Booster opening alone is a masterpiece design-wise. The tension building, animations, LEGENDARY!! - someone really did their homework on conditioning and which addiction-buttons to push. Nothing is "just a button". Compared to this, MTGO feels like MS Office 1.5. MTGA goes in the right direction but does not play in the same league.

    Accessibility
    Even Tron players can understand Hearthstone in 10 minutes. Rules are intuitive, it is not very complex and you can learn most of it just by watching some streamer for a bit. This plus the polished UX makes it fun to watch. Also very important, and this is another Blizzard-thing, everybody can at some point have their moment, no matter the skill. You can slam that Yog Soron, have mighty things happen for some seconds and maybe even win. Randomness is a great equalizer. Joe Average can win vs. Brian Kibler by winning the deciding coin flips. MTG has very little of this. Joe Average won't beat Kai Budde except when the stars align and Cthulhu rises from the depths. Rules are often unintuitive at best (Creatures are spells? I can't bolt the goyf? What is a "stack"?). Competitively, this is a boon for magic as it makes for a way deeper and fascinating game than hearthstone. But that comes at a cost.

    Business model
    I repeat myself but the prices for Magic are simply insane. There is no other way to put it and no way to justify. I can buy a modern deck from scratch or get a tailor made suit instead. There is no way in hell this business model will fly against free to play + pay to skip. This also effects how people can pick this up as a career. With hearthstone, anyone with a computer and halfway decent internet access can work their way up to become a popular streamer. This is a powerful thing and very important for the success of any esport.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Let's not make the mistake and label GWx Counters Company a "Toolbox Deck". It is a combo deck through and through that uses toolbox cards for combo assembly and dependent on the list plays 9-15 combo pieces that would not find themselves in a good midrange build or midrange with possible combo finisher (i.e. Kiki Chord).
    Yes it has the option to play a grindy game, but if one would focus on that sort of game plan, the lists would look entirely different.
    Chord of Calling in the 75 does not make GWx Company a toolbox deck just as Remand and Opt does not make Storm a tempo/control deck.

    The only thing atm coming close to toolbox is GW Valuetown which is indeed nonexistant in top 8.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    In my opinion, people are always going to think of excuses to hate on Combo decks. Combo decks need some resilience or else they just fold too easily and are not worth playing by any stretch of the imagination.

    The lines for that differ depending on the combo deck or deck in general. If a deck is all in on one uncommon angle of attack which can only be targeted by specific hate, it should fold to that hate. I.e. Storm should never be able to win through a resolved Rule of Law and Rest in Piece effect without considerable slowdown.
    There are other combo decks which are not all in or the combo interruptible by common means of interaction and thus generally allowed more freedom and resilience. Twin was such a deck, its main strength being imho that it could switch between combo and UR grindfest (while taxing the opponent all the same).
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from Aazadan »
    Quote from ktkenshinx »

    Don't remember the KCI matchup, but can confirm in the large MWP dataset, Humans is very unfavored against Tron. It's at least 45-55 and probably 40-60.


    In the data I had from when it first got posted (I think you've updated it since then?) it was 45.2% against Tron and KCI was 43.3%. Other under 50% matchups in that data were Counters Company at 49.9%, Hollow One at 48.2%, Titanshift at 49.5%, and UWx Control at 48.8%

    That's pretty embarrassing that Counters Company and Titanshift only beat Humans a little more than 50% of the time. Although my dataset is not super high (probably 20 matches for Titanshift and 10 for Company), I have absolutely CRUSHED these matchups. Titanshift games themselves are a bit closer, but the Company ones are usually not close at all. For what it's worth, outside of playing those matches, I have also tested the matchups enough to be all right with how I view the matchup. If someone showed me something new about the matchup(s), I'd take it into consideration.


    Same for me. On GW Company, I have not lost a single match to humans yet in a tournament setting (about 6? matches) and during testing my record is about 13 - 4 in matches, despite me playing the knights version and not abzan with finks which should have an even better game. Sure, it is a very small and probably biased N, but if it helps I also never felt as if those games were especially close or tough. In my experience, for humans to win that matchup they have to draw the perfect ratio of aggro and disruption. Too much aggro -> they lose to combo, too much disruption -> they fail to put you on the clock and lose to value over time. Whereas for GW most solid draws with an early mana dork are pretty much ok.

    The 49.9% for humans is very surprising and I am asking myself the same questions as to where my assessment of the matchup might be wrong.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from tronix »


    bridgevine showing up for both GPs. relatively poor showing for humans in stockholm, but it did well in hong kong. similarly UW control didnt show up in hong kong, but had a dominating performance in stockholm.



    I attended Hong Kong and I can tell you that UW control was all over the place. Personally matched up against UW control 4 times in day 1. Honestly quite surprised that there wasn't a single one in the top 8.


    Wasn't there an issue with the typhoon which caused lots of people to drop? I heard a rumor on the weekend that it was even questionable whether there would be a day two because of the storm.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from Jinholic »
    Quote from GotSK »
    Honestly, I do not really see atm why Birthing Pod should remain banned, considering new stuff like Abrade and trophy. It would help toolbox become a thing again and it is not too strong considering what other decks are allowed to do in modern currently. It also would not slot in any current deck, as chord/company follows a different gameplan and deckbuilding restrictions.


    They printed the fixed version Eldritch Evolution Pod is never coming back.


    "Fixed" as in neutered. Having Eldritch Evolution be uncounterable or have the sacrifice happen as an effect instead of cost would left this playable.

    As for "design space", they apparently don't have a problem with spells despite Snapcaster Mage, for which almost the same reasoning may apply.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Honestly, I do not really see atm why Birthing Pod should remain banned, considering new stuff like Abrade and trophy. It would help toolbox become a thing again and it is not too strong considering what other decks are allowed to do in modern currently. It also would not slot in any current deck, as chord/company follows a different gameplan and deckbuilding restrictions.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from ccc1522 »
    I named about 6 removal spells and you picked terminate and dreadbore.. which were both in the top deck a few weeks ago (mardu) and still at time played in jund.

    Fatal push is all over the place main board. Almost all of the counterspells you listed are sideboard or unplayable. Btw heroes downfall was played for quite some time after it was printed in theros by BGx decks. how are you gonna name silimgars scorn of all cards? That has quite literally never seen the light of day in modern.

    Lets not even mention the other trash tier spells youre naming. In the last 5 years name a counterspell that has seen as much main deck play as fatal push, how about abrupt decay? How about terminate and dreadbore? The closest youll get to is stubborn denial and thats in one deck only.

    You cant name any. None exist. No playable counterspells have been printed in forever. They simply print cancel variants which is exactly what neglect is. They choose the lazy, non creative, unplayable design and keep picking it over and over and over again. Where as removal gets creative designs that are both powerful and playable in modern. Murderous cut was immediately played in modern, as was dreadbore, fatal push, abrupt decay, and now assassins trophy is almost at 40$.

    Playable sweepers since verdict? Anger of the Gods was picked up immediately in modern, settle the wreckage saw play instantly in jeskai control, bontus has not seen any play from what ive seen. There is another one im missing.

    But that proves my point further even sweepers have seen a great deal of play.

    So no its not across the board.

    Manlands have been weak Ill give you that and I was going to compare the neglect of good counterspells to the neglect of designing manlands.

    But even still theres a great deal of manlands all over modern not just colonnade there blinkmoth in affinity variants and infect, mutavault in eldrazi aggro and merfolk, raging ravine in jund, tree top village in mono green stompy, abzan and jund.
    And thats not even the only lands to look at we then have other utility lands like field of ruin and the other gy hate one played in amulet titan.

    Even lands are getting more main deck playable designs than counterspells.
    So I think youre wrong and my evidence here proves it quite well. That modern playable, powerful, main deckable counterspells have been neglected for some time.


    I never disputed that. My only issue is that you make this seem like a unique thing for counterspells.
    I just dont get where your lines of argument are. Are we talking about new cards? If yes, then why do you keep bringing up ancient examples? The manlands you mentioned are 8-9 years old. Terminate is stone age. Yes, Fatal Push is a strong, maindeckable removal that was printed "recently". I give you that.
    Are we talking about the toolset in general? Then yeah, removal has no universal answers on the levels of bolt and path. But if you look at the 50 most played cards in modern on goldfish, permission keeps up with removal quite well about 5 counters on 7-10 removals considering the fact that removal is spread over 3 colours. Uxx decks were not struggling due to a lack of counterspells overall.

    It's also confusing how the goalposts shift from "playable" to "powerful" and "main deck". Yet at the same time you compare it to stuff like Hero's Downfall. Even Abrupt decay, who plays decay maindeck although it admittably is a strong card? Jund as a 1.4 of? Settle the wreckage? Murderous cut? Laughing
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from ccc1522 »
    Quote from GotSK »
    Quote from Wraithpk »
    I think what Cfusionpm's complaint really comes down to is that WotC isn't playing in the space that might produce Modern playable counterspells. They're being too conservative with that particular kind of interaction. I don't think they're willing to print a 3 cmc counterspell with enough upside to make it Modern playable. A 3 cmc counter would need to have significant upside to see play. The window of Modern playability is in 2 cmc counters with downside, or 1 cmc counters that are narrow, and they rarely tread in this territory. Ceremonious Rejection was a great printing. It did practically nothing in Standard, and it's nothing more than a sideboard card, although a nice one, in Modern. Other than that, when was the last time they designed a Modern playable counterspell? Disdainful Stroke and Stubborn Denial back in Khan's block, like 4 years ago? And thank God we got those two, because before that it was Spell Pierce and Countersquall, back in 2009!!

    They've designed THREE Modern playable counter spells in almost 10 years. That's just being lazy and not exploring that design space enough. Here's an idea: UW: Counter target noncreature spell, you gain 2 life. There, in 5 seconds I thought up a Negate variant that would probably be playable in Modern and is absolutely fine from a power level standpoint. Why can't they play with different effects and casting costs like this instead of printing Negate in every set? That is the argument here about counterspells. It's not that people want something crazy busted, we just want something playable, and it's so rare for WotC to get adventurous enough to design something like that.


    You are not wrong about what you say, but this is an issue not confined to counterspells. Despite Fatal Push, how much good single target removal that actually stuck in modern has been printed? Bolt, path, helix, these are still by far the old as time format staples. Abrupt Decay? 2012 and barely a two-of in the few decks that play it maindeck. The removal department does not even get boring reprints, standard mostly keeps pumping out simply worse versions of the existing. Anti lifegain? Manlands? Green walkers or dimir cards that are not straight up garbage? I bet there are endless categories that have had unused design space in the last years.
    Does that mean we do not have enough removal or manlands? Of course not. As I said, Bolt Snap Bolt is a tough cookie and printing stuff thats better or the same with a different name would result in a significant power shift. Same for Negate. It might not be as flashy as some new UR hotness, but it is a solid and playable card that gets the job done. Despite getting almost nothing new in the counter department, UW control has ascended to T1.

    So if the argument is (as you claim) not about power, not about some tool-gap that has to be filled, not about some treatment unique to countermagic, what is it really about? Nothing but artistic expression or lack thereof on the side of wizards? Given the vitriol and conspiracy theories brought up in support of this argument, I do not buy that for a second.

    No attack on you personally, maybe you really just want to critizise the lazyness of wizard's design department (which I would fully agree with), but there is more to this side of the debate overall.


    Youcant compare the lack of counterspells to the lack of removal. There has been alot of removal printed in abrupt decay, terminate, dread bore, fatal push, now assassins trophy, heroes downfall, murderous cut

    The amount of playable removal that has been printed completely blows the amount of playable counterspells out of the water. Completely incomparable.

    The point is neglect isnt seen anywhere else except in the design of counterspells.


    Lol ok so if Dreadbore is the bar for 'playable' and Terminate the bar for 'printed' let's see... Deprive DispelCeremonious rejection Disdainful Stroke Izzet Charm Silumgar's Scorn Stubborn Denial Swan Song Spell Pierce Unified Will
    Not even starting on Hero's Downfall, if that one counts as modern playable removal, all the differnt flavours of Cancel count as playable counterspells.

    Also removal was not my only example. Playable sweepers since Supreme Verdict? Maybe Bontu's Last Reckoning if you count sideboards in fringe decks as playable.
    Manlands. Nothing since Celestial Collonade. Maybe Shambling Vent if you are really really trying.
    Don't tell me there is no design space left in those cases.

    The statement that only counterspells are met with design neglect is simply wrong. It is an issue that goes through all of modern except "solid creature" and it mostly is just an academic issue since in a lot of cases the tools we have suffice.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from Wraithpk »
    I think what Cfusionpm's complaint really comes down to is that WotC isn't playing in the space that might produce Modern playable counterspells. They're being too conservative with that particular kind of interaction. I don't think they're willing to print a 3 cmc counterspell with enough upside to make it Modern playable. A 3 cmc counter would need to have significant upside to see play. The window of Modern playability is in 2 cmc counters with downside, or 1 cmc counters that are narrow, and they rarely tread in this territory. Ceremonious Rejection was a great printing. It did practically nothing in Standard, and it's nothing more than a sideboard card, although a nice one, in Modern. Other than that, when was the last time they designed a Modern playable counterspell? Disdainful Stroke and Stubborn Denial back in Khan's block, like 4 years ago? And thank God we got those two, because before that it was Spell Pierce and Countersquall, back in 2009!!

    They've designed THREE Modern playable counter spells in almost 10 years. That's just being lazy and not exploring that design space enough. Here's an idea: UW: Counter target noncreature spell, you gain 2 life. There, in 5 seconds I thought up a Negate variant that would probably be playable in Modern and is absolutely fine from a power level standpoint. Why can't they play with different effects and casting costs like this instead of printing Negate in every set? That is the argument here about counterspells. It's not that people want something crazy busted, we just want something playable, and it's so rare for WotC to get adventurous enough to design something like that.


    You are not wrong about what you say, but this is an issue not confined to counterspells. Despite Fatal Push, how much good single target removal that actually stuck in modern has been printed? Bolt, path, helix, these are still by far the old as time format staples. Abrupt Decay? 2012 and barely a two-of in the few decks that play it maindeck. The removal department does not even get boring reprints, standard mostly keeps pumping out simply worse versions of the existing. Anti lifegain? Manlands? Green walkers or dimir cards that are not straight up garbage? I bet there are endless categories that have had unused design space in the last years.
    Does that mean we do not have enough removal or manlands? Of course not. As I said, Bolt Snap Bolt is a tough cookie and printing stuff thats better or the same with a different name would result in a significant power shift. Same for Negate. It might not be as flashy as some new UR hotness, but it is a solid and playable card that gets the job done. Despite getting almost nothing new in the counter department, UW control has ascended to T1.

    So if the argument is (as you claim) not about power, not about some tool-gap that has to be filled, not about some treatment unique to countermagic, what is it really about? Nothing but artistic expression or lack thereof on the side of wizards? Given the vitriol and conspiracy theories brought up in support of this argument, I do not buy that for a second.

    No attack on you personally, maybe you really just want to critizise the lazyness of wizard's design department (which I would fully agree with), but there is more to this side of the debate overall.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from gkourou »
    @CFP: You have to understand that Teferi won't and can't let them print any 2 cmc counterspell. Even Deprive would be too good at this point in Standard.

    Let's wait for another year, until he rotates out and see what happens. For now, we got Jace, Teferi, Opt, Search, Field and so many other playable blue control cards. It seems crazy to complain about blue, when it received so many tools!


    In all fairness, he is complaining about UR, which indeed has not received many tools as of late. Besides Opt, none of those really fit into a classic tempo shell.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from cfusionpm »
    Quote from GotSK »
    Quote from cfusionpm »

    The bottom line is that Ionize is embarrassing from a design standpoint. It's a glorified Uncommon-level card being propped up at the face-card of Izzet. It's a symptom of more than a decade of powering down things that interact with the stack and another example of endless sea of frustration from UR players.


    Quote from cfusionpm »
    Just find it interesting that GB gets one of best removal spells ever printed, while UR gets a spell arguably worse than multiple other similar spells. It's just an observation.


    Pick one.

    Pick one what? They design design bad counterspells, and have for at least a decade. These are not statements at odds with each other.

    Edit: and mostly what I mean by this is the trend of making removal towards cheap + relatively meaningless downside and counters to expensive with usually-not-worth-it upside.

    Imagine if instead of Ionize, we got: "UR: Counter target spell, its controller searches for a basic land."

    Imagine if instead of Counterflux we got: "UR: Counter target spell CMC3 or less. This can't be countered."

    And then wonder why UR players are salty about the new BG spell and their terrible countershock.


    It is "not just an observation" when you are on a crusade.
    I find it quite disingenuous that you equate countering ANY spell with a removal that does not hit sorceries or instants and does not prevent ETB effects from happening. Yes, you need the counter the moment the spell is played but you also need trophy before they have played Karn and Ulamog. As well as it is disingenuous to claim that "your opponent ramps" is a "meaningless downside".

    I agree that in terms of new cards, UR as multicolor has not been on the receiving end of the best stuff. But then again when it comes to general answers, Snapcaster + Bolt (or specific, cheap, red removal) still easily beats 95% of the field, hands down.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from cfusionpm »

    The bottom line is that Ionize is embarrassing from a design standpoint. It's a glorified Uncommon-level card being propped up at the face-card of Izzet. It's a symptom of more than a decade of powering down things that interact with the stack and another example of endless sea of frustration from UR players.


    Quote from cfusionpm »
    Just find it interesting that GB gets one of best removal spells ever printed, while UR gets a spell arguably worse than multiple other similar spells. It's just an observation.


    Pick one.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from idSurge »
    Quote from tronix »
    Quote from Wraithpk »
    Quote from tronix »


    the silver lining though is that GB getting such a nice card bodes well for everyone else. if they arent afraid to throw that much power into a card, then maybe we could see a new counterspell or vindicate variant in the near future.

    as i mentioned earlier assassin's trophy just reeks of play designs influence.
    Didn't Maro say recently that they considered putting Counterspell in a recent set? I feel like they want to put Counterspell into Modern, but don't really want to deal with it in Standard, so it'll probably be one of the first cards we get whenever they finally do a product that's Modern legal but not Standard legal.


    tbh i wouldnt be surprised if that was just lip service to get people to stop asking about it. counterspell may or may not come to modern one day, but really its whatever.

    my point was more that assassin's trophy is a pure good stuff card. it isnt some enabler or card that scales out of control like treasure cruise. its power is front and center. meaning the likelihood of it being some mistake that slipped through the cracks is close to zero.

    so its either an isolated incident, where they are designing standard as usual (ie poorly) with a 2 mana vindicate randomly thrown in; or they are moving in a different direction.


    It really is a 'whatever'.

    I'm not convinced Counterspell would be the business right now. What gets cut? 1-3 Logic Knot? Bad cards like Mana Leak? Negate?

    Looking at MTGGoldfish thats what UW is playing, 1 of each. So what? Its not even Top 50 in Legacy, or Vintage. You know what is? Sorcerous Spyglass. Abrade see's more play in Legacy, than Counterspell!

    Nah. People cannot stomach having their stuff countered, so we have not seen it in what, 15+ years? Hilarious. 'It rates poorly in marketing' Weird

    People weep when they see Cryptic getting abused, at 4 Mana. FOUR. God help us when its cast for 6 with Snaps, my opponents flip their ***** at how 'busted' a card it is.

    SIX MANA SHOULD BE BUSTED.

    Its so aggravating, having to endure the tears of people who could just as easily cast a Thoughtseize, but instead want to be allowed to just cast creatures on curve without having to endure the dreaded 'counter'.

    Drives me absolutely nuts.


    "People" complain about all sorts of things. I had opponents cry about how busted Chord is after I cast it for 5 to bring a Kiki Jiki into play.

    Nevertheless you have to understand one simple fact about people playing deck based games. A player wants their deck to do its thing, they have an emotional relationship to cards and playstyles, as perfectly illustrated in this very thread. Of course they also want to win, but losing because you never could do anything your deck was designed to do is significantly more infuriating than just losing. That's why prison, mill, land destruction, counters and discard are so universally hated as main deck strategies. This of course never occurs to the players of those strategies as they usually get to do what their deck was meant to do, who often respond in a manner similar to "how about you play something else instead, don't be so greedy".

    You can stomp your foot all you want at this perceived injustice, but it does not change that the best business decision for Wizards is to minimalize horrible experiences, because they stick.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 20/08/2018)
    Quote from BlueTronFTW »

    And this is due to WOTC desperately wanting to make this an esport. Don't be surprised when the number of amateur entrants dwindles, and pros try to become an elite class with little to no competition. They want the same faces there all the time for reasons I've yet to comprehend.


    As long as prices stay as insane as they currently are just for basic tools needed to play the game (manabase, staples), there is no way in hell MTG will ever become a relevant esport. I'm talking 60$ for a deck, not for a single card. That however will never happen as long as most of the player base is invested in and LGS base their existence on single card trading/prices which essentially is a non-malignant ponzi scheme at this point in time.

    This is just in terms of accessibility, not even talking about the influence on the meta.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • To post a comment, please or register a new account.