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  • posted a message on 2/14 Secret Lairs: Theros Stargazing
    I think you might be missing the point. While they haven't come out and addressed the secondary market (due to legal reasons), Original Theros came out 7 years ago. Unlike many of the cards in the previous secret lairs, these are all mythics, and we still don't know if there will be additional bonus cards in them to further increase their value.

    WotC clearly saw an opportunity to double down on the Theros Constellation God art and got all of them done. We as the consumer, whether new player, veteran or collector, have a chance to get a limited edition premium product. It's not going to appeal to everyone. Case and point, this is MY first secret lair drop purchase. The previous ones didn't appeal to me enough to make me pull the trigger. The best value for these things is often in buying the bundle to save money and flipping the ones you don't want/care for to recoup some of the cost of what you did want. Would I have bought the bundle if it was $200 with no discount? No, probably not. At a $10 discount on each (making them all $30) with $10 in tax and free shipping? It was a bargain considering the cost of acquiring all of the foil originals at today's prices.

    Would these things be bothering you if they were $30 flat with no discount or incentive to purchase the bundle? ...That's how businesses work. Sam's Club, Costco... hell, the food you buy in the grocery store incentivizes you to buy the bigger packs from a value perspective. You don't get to go to the store and buy the nice product at the bundled price and only get a single.

    Addressing a later comment you made about the cost of things rising. I will agree that masters products should be closer to the $7-8 per pack range like they used to be, but that's due more to the epic misses they have in the set to balance it. I won't agree with you if your position is that they should be the same cost as regular packs. While that would be nicer on the wallet, they're making different products for different audiences. If you're expecting something like one of these secret lairs to be the same cost as the *Explosion sounds* goblin drop, you're a little crazy (as that thing was the equivalent of a dumpster fire).
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on 2/14 Secret Lairs: Theros Stargazing
    Even if the value of this Secret Lair drops initially, it's still got a lot going for it:
    • Premium, limited release product (what? 2-3 days of availability?)
    • Foil
    • Alternate Art
    • New Legendary Frame
    • Original cards haven't been printed in some time, and at the very least, this makes it less likely that they'll show up anytime again in the near future (+ we were just in Theros)
    - And that doesn't even account for something like the extra War of the Spark stained glass planeswalkers that were in previous products. If there's an additional thing in each of them, that's just MORE value to be had.

    Do I personally like some of the original art better than the constellation art (ex. Xenagos)? Absolutely.
    Is the current cost of purchasing the originals all in foil a daunting one, at today's prices, for new and tenured players? Yeah, I would say you could probably bet your ass it is. $465? Hard pass.

    The odds of these cards going to or below the value of the original non-foils, even in the short term, is so low because of the factors I listed above. They'll hold a premium for that and because people want to pimp out their decks with shiny foils. The longer they go without a 'true' reprinting that's more widely available, the more expensive they'll become.

    Kaleidoscope Killers drop was also tribal specific, where many of the Gods are generically good across a wider span of decks. They also don't require 5 colors to run, which often taxes a budget. That drop is more of a corner case exception than the rule.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on 2/14 Secret Lairs: Theros Stargazing
    Quote from Laughing Loa »
    Novemember/December Secret Lairs: (5) at $29.99, (2) at $39.99. $200 for a bundle.
    January Secret Lairs: (1) at $39.99. (no $29.99 products)
    February Secret Lairs: (5) at $39.99. $150 for a bundle. (no $29.99 products)


    (J Jonah Jameson Laughing): https://youtu.be/Jy-7q8vmrXM

    Toss a coin to your wizards!
    O'valley of Whales

    really... and there are people still defending this product

    Have you checked the prices of the original art Gods in foil? If you bought each one in foil, as of TCG prices today, it would be ~$465 for 15 cards... or you can get cards that haven't been available or reprinted, as a newer player or a fan of the new art style for a fraction of the cost...

    Your high horse sir/madam, please dismount it. These products aren't for everyone, and that's ok. You have plenty of other things to look forward to this year as far as other products go.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Are gold-bordered cards cheating?
    Quote from Macabre »

    One issue that you will need to figure out with your playgroup is the likelihood of you owning the authentic card at any point. The few metas I play in all allow champ/collectors/international cards only if you plan to actually eventually own the card for that deck, or if you own a copy but don't have duplicates for multiple decks. We wouldn't allow a worlds gaea's cradle if you had zero intent on ever obtaining the real thing.

    This is the stance my play group has as well, partially because I championed it. It's all too easy now for people to get stylized proxies (foil or otherwise) of super expensive cards like Gaea's Cradle for $4-5 per card. It's one thing to proxy a card because you want to see how it plays out, but let's be real, reserved list cards are only going to get more expensive. If you're not planning on buying or trading up for one now, it's only going to get harder to do so in the future.

    That being said, I'm not trying to be a jerk about it, but the card's power level and what it can do to a game has to be respected. Of the 15 decks I've built over the past decade, I have 6-7 that have green in them. I own a single copy of cradle and am not proxying it in any other deck, despite how easy it would be to do so. The gold-bordered cradle in this example is at least a step in the right direction, being a legit wotc product and it having the same recognizable image to mark what it is from across a table.

    One player in my group actually went out and bought one after trying to use the $4 foil cradle, because we had that conversation. It's not right to proxy all of the most expensive cards that are out there because you want the best version of something but never plan to obtain them. It's disrespectful to those who have spent their time, money and effort to obtain those cards because you either:
    A. had some chinese company print counterfeits
    B. decided that a slip of paper with pen/sharpie would be sufficient for long term play
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Run more interaction! Run more fast mana! Or: The death of interesting edh deckbuilding
    Quote from Carthage »

    I run between 6 and 12 decks at any given time, but overall I've probably made more than 30 commander decks.

    Not really, I've had a store group that is not fixed, and groups of friends that eventually stop meeting up over the years. Right now I have a sort of stable group but they have one deck each and the power level is very out of balance.

    For the first few years of edh, pretty substantial. Lately? Almost no variance. Broken cards are stronger than general synergy, so the list rarely changes.

    It sounds like we have a similar enough experience to compare notes.
    ~14-15 decks currently, Built/co-built a ton more for friends and ended up retiring ~10 of my own decks along the way to get where I am.

    As others have mentioned, unfortunately, the nature of the game is such that stronger cards or functional reprints of worthwhile ones (ex. Cultivate and Kodama's Reach) need to occur to incentivize people purchasing the new products. Sometimes people chase new arts, foils, promos, alt. languages, etc. But the act itself of "Upgrading" one's deck, whether it's strictly on a power level basis or for the sake of a theme, it's a completely natural part of the game and the deckbuilding process.

    Some people happen to have more disposable income than others and it allows them to circumnavigate the trials of saving up, trading, cracking, etc. It's unfortunate when it allows for a larger power jump than a playgroup is ready for, because the arms race often follows.

    I won't claim to know what the financial circumstances are like for you or those around in your current group, but I'd like to try to recommend a few things.
    1. Try to get the group to be on board with a different deck idea with a budget of $30-50 ($100 if everyone's down) and see what they say. Obviously exclude foil costs if people have them and cut the cost for basic lands out entirely.
    2. Try to get your LGS to run a Commander League with points. They often have merits/demerits for playing fast mana early, knocking people out before a certain turn, looping a combo more than a few times in a turn, etc.
    3. Maybe offer up one of your other decks for them to run instead of the one they have. They might be curious about running a different archetype (ex. Voltron, tribal, lifegain, etc.), but lack the funds or card collection to make one they think would have a shot in the current meta there. This goes back to the TL;DR I mentioned - Budget, CMC average, No cards over a certain CMC in deck, Color restrictions, Less popular theme, Play bigger games with more people and opportunity for interaction, etc. Get them to give something like that a shot?
    4. Try a game type variant. Planechase, Star Magic, Cowboy/Bang, King (whatever you want to call it), something.

    The game needs 5-7 people total.
    Cards to denote the given roles are sleeved and shuffled face down and picked at random.
    Plains = Sheriff/King (There's only ever 1)
    Island = Deputy (starts at quantity 1 and then gets another at odd player intervals - 5, 7, 9, etc.)
    Swamp = Outlaw/Assassin
    Mountain = Renegade/Usurper (There's only ever 1)

    The Sheriff is the only role to be revealed at the start of the game.
    Sheriff starts with 20 life + 10 for each other player. Everyone else is at 40.
    Sheriff goes first (and draws)
    If anyone kills an outlaw, they get to draw 3 cards as a bounty.
    If the Sheriff kills their Deputy, they discard their hand.
    The Renegade often plays the fence.
    Everyone is trying to convince the Sheriff that they are the Deputy, until they aren't.

    Win conditions:
    Sheriff and Deputy(s) win when the Outlaws and the Renegade are dead.
    Outlaws win when the Sheriff dies.
    Renegade wins when they and the Sheriff are the last 2 standing and the Sheriff dies.
    **Alternate win conditions don't function at all**

    It adds a very political element to the game, and it helps muddy the waters for power levels.
    The King variant just has the Usurper take the King's place as King if they manage to kill them.

    We play the Bang variant probably 75% of the time with the other 25% being a mix of free-for-all and 2-headed giant.

    I suggest these things because I have had to do the same at the request of my play group. I have some 8-9's in my collection that positively go nuts, but I only break them out every once in a while, because of how degenerate they can get. Maybe get a couple lower power games in before breaking out the haymakers for a quick game at the end of the night?
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Run more interaction! Run more fast mana! Or: The death of interesting edh deckbuilding
    After reviewing the contents of the thread, I wanted to pose a couple questions to Carthage (OP).
    1. How many decks are you running?
    2. Do you have a tried and true regular play group?
    3. Of all the decks you have, how much variance do you see across the colors you're using with regard to card choice?

    I ask from a point of trying to understand where you're coming from and relate as best I can. So I suppose I'll go first:
    1. I have ~15 decks, some of which are more tuned than the others
    2. I am fortunate to have a regular play group locally and one about an hour away from college that gets together every 1-2 months. I also have a LGS nearby to scratch the itch if need be.
    3. I have some "staples" I go to, if I can, in color - Krosan Grip for the split second removal, Heroic Intervention for the anti-removal or boardwipe tech. Beast Within for unrestricted permanent removal. Often a Cultivate or Kodama's Reach variant or both. Sure, but I'm not running the exact same suite of cards in every deck. Some cards see more play than others, but what the deck is trying to do is really where everything starts for me.

    I recently had a friend complain about my Chulane, Teller of Tales deck, saying it's the same as all my other decks. I specifically powered this one down though. Tribal golems... let that sink in. There are some generic staples for the colors, enablers like Parallel Lives, Anointed Procession, Doubling Season, Mirari's Wake... sure. But I'm playing a less than optimal way to play the commander, and it's something I had fun building and I know no one will expect. That "suite" of cards I mentioned? Those are there to prevent the deck from getting trounced by the more easily focused/tuned decks. I'm playing with a crutch, but I imposed that on myself.

    I played 3 games friday night with the deck.
    Game 1: 1v1, barely won versus Kumena. It came down to a turn.
    Game 2: 3 player game. Went ham, 100%. wasn't even close. Talking Precursor Golem + Garruk's Packleader + Parallel Lives + Rite of Replication = "I draw over 50 cards in a turn between that and the rest of my board" crazy.
    Game 3: 4 player game. The Yarok and Korvold players ran away with the game and my deck and the Elsha ones barely got off the ground.

    TL;DR - Impose some limitations on yourself. Budget, CMC average, No cards over a certain CMC in deck, Color restrictions, Less popular theme, Play bigger games with more people and opportunity for interaction, etc.

    These are the restrictions I have for myself:

    Chulane = Golem tribal(for the most part)
    Golos = Colorless combo/value (With only a few ways to make colored mana for his ability)
    Balan = Mono-white voltron
    Kalemne = Boros voltron + Sunforger package
    Feather = Boros spellslinging
    Mina and Denn = Gruul Landfall
    Karlov = Orzhov lifegain (also no spell is over 6cmc, and there's only 1 6cmc card)
    Ezuri 1.0 = Elf tribal + elf warrior tokens (concessions were made to allow for that synergy)
    Odric 1.0 = Soldier tribal (everything is either a soldier, make soldiers, or supports/pumps them)
    Syr Gwen = Knight tribal
    Sliver Overlord = Sliver tribal/combo (toolbox)
    Selvala 2.0 = Big green beats/mana combo (knowingly isn't the most optimized build for it)
    Captain Sisay = Legendary.deck (toolbox)
    Valduk = Mono-red equipments/auras (biggest value, lowest cmc equipments and synergistic red stuff)
    Marath = Naya token combo + planeswalkers (Not quite Breya levels of "Oops, this falls into combos without trying", but it's not too far off)
    ** Additional note, there's probably 7 or so boardwipes total between all of the decks. Because I would rather play the game, and let others worry about it. It works out for me most of the time and serves 2 purposes:
    1. Lets me run more single-target responses
    2. Lets me run more of the cards I like, but would have to cut for mass removal.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Current issues with MTGCommander.net Forums
    Has anyone else been aware that the mtgcommander.net forums suffered an outage over the past 1-2 months? From the looks of things, the restore they managed to perform has ~3-4 months worth of posts having been deleted. I haven't been able to post anything on the website, new or otherwise, and there's been no updates on the Rules Committee's Twitter page.

    Holidays withstanding, there hasn't been any updates there and we just finished Theros: Beyond Death's spoiler season.

    Has anyone else been aware of updates made elsewhere or have a link for anything the rules committee posted?
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Calix, Destiny's Hand(Last PW, TCGplayer Preview)
    Quote from schindar »
    I like nothing about this card. Estrid players are getting their deck spoon fed to them.

    As opposed to zombie/vampire/angel/graveyard decks getting spoonfed by the Innistrad block? Planeswalker/superfriend decks with War of the Spark? Artifact decks with Kaladesh? Merfolk/vampires/dinosaurs with Ixalan?

    It's just how it goes, and there's nothing abnormal about it.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Mothership 1/3 - Haktos the Unscarred
    Quote from leslak »
    Just to say: On Standard and Pioneer we have Bonecrusher Giant as the counter for 2 and 3. Also stomp makes this guy die to any block soo if you are playing vs a red deck better never block with this guy.

    The "Protection from cmc" clause still prevents you from using Stomp to target Hektos if the die roll came up as 3 or 4; The damage prevention is irrelevant at that point. If his weakness is 2, then you'd be able to both target and damage Hektos. If you're talking about using Stomp as a sort of Skullcrack effect before using a damage based sweeper, then that could work.

    As far as blocking, short of the turn he comes out without haste and without having vigilance somehow, he's not going to be doing a whole lot of blocking.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on New Judge foil: Sliver Legion
    I would 100% put my original Sliver Legion towards obtaining this one. It's gorgeous
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Mystic Forge - Eternal Central
    How and why is Mystic Forge preordering for $20 foil pretty much everywhere? It's a core set and it's a sub $3 card everywhere. The foil multiplier is insane, it's like it's a premium/limited set rare/mythic...

    I would argue that Golos, Tireless Pilgrim is more playable in that it can easily slot into any 5 color deck, but Forge needs either a colorless deck or a deck (commander anyway) of probably 30+ artifact/colorless cards. Star City Games has foil Golos for $10... and he's a viable commander option himself.

    Is there something I'm not seeing? Sub $3 rare at prerelease, near zero potential to do anything worthwhile in standard, likely too slow for modern and beyond...
    Hell, The new mythic swords from Modern Horizons only have a 300% foil multiplier by comparison... This has almost a 800-900% multiplier...
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on MPL weekly stream preview card - Sword of sinew and Steel (Rakdos sword)
    I just wanted to point out a few things about this sword that might not be obvious to everyone here to clarify why this sword is not only ridiculous, but more powerful than the other sword in the set, Sword of Truth and Justice.

    For Modern:
    Most swords haven't seen any play since Stoneforge Mystic was banned. So whether it's playable there isn't so much of an arguement. Modern set yes, but it's obvious by now that WotC caters to multiple formats with sets like these.

    For Commander - Sword of Sinew and Steel Pros:
    * It has pro 2 colors, one of them being black. Black is one of the most heavily played colors and in today's tendency for 2+ color commanders, you still have a fair amount of the board being unable to block this thing.
    * You can target "up to one" of both a Planeswalker and/or an Artifact. Unlike most swords (Sword of Feast and Famine, Sword of Body and Mind, Sword of War and Peace), you can target different permanents than have them directed at/limited by the person you've just attacked.
    -- You can attack the vulnerable opponent to hit 2 targets that are controlled by 1-2 other opponents.
    * You can blow up your own artifacts if needed. (ex. Spine of Ish Sah)
    * You don't have to decide whether to swing at a Planeswalker or at your opponent, you can have your cake and eat it too.
    * Gives conditional removal to decks that might not have access to straight up Planeswalker or artifact removal.
    * If there are no planeswalkers or artifacts out, opponents are unlikely to play them if they can't protect them or outright blow up your sword with them. This means that your opponents aren't progressing in the game as fast as you might be.

    For Commander - Sword of Sinew and Steel Cons:
    * Like all swords, you might not have protection from the color(s) you want at the time you need it.
    * Like all swords, you might have to build around effects in your deck if you plan on targeting your creatures with colored effects that the sword protects against.
    * You might not have a Planeswalker and/or an Artifact to blow up (Though this is super unlikely in multiplayer since just about everyone is playing one or the other, or both in their deck).

    For Commander - Sword of Truth and Justice Pros:
    * It has pro 2 colors, one of them being blue. Blue is one of the most heavily played colors and in today's tendency for 2+ color commanders, you still have a fair amount of the board being unable to block this thing.
    * You can give one of your creatures a +1/+1 counter... and then give it another one if nothing else you have has counters.
    * You can proliferate, so there's a high upside for Planeswalkers and other permanents that have counters.

    For Commander - Sword of Truth and Justice Cons:
    * Like all swords, you might not have protection from the color(s) you want at the time you need it.
    * Like all swords, you might have to build around effects in your deck if you plan on targeting your creatures with colored effects that the sword protects against.
    * You can give one of your creatures a +1/+1 counter... and then give it another one if nothing else you have has counters... (Obviously this has a more exponential curve of utility. While the ceiling is quite high, the floor is in the basement.)
    * Gives conditional proliferate to decks that might not have as much access to the effect.

    I for one hope that popular opinion on this one tanks, because it just means that I'll be able to scoop up copies for cheaper than I should be able to.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Wishes
    Platinum Angel doesn't break the rules, it sets a static effect on the board. Don't "trumps" Do. Ex. If Teferi is out and you have Yeva, Nature's Herald out, you still can't play your creatures at instant speed. I do believe that wishes will prove to be more troublesome than they're worth. If there was a sensible way to make them work without causing problems, overly complicated erratas or the inclusion of sideboards, the RC likely would have found a way to do it.

    My gripe with the cards like Relentless Rats and co. is more about it being an exception to the rule that allows it to break singleton. I don't like it, but I understand that it's realistically the only way Rats exists as a tribe, and makes budget mill a thing.

    While sideboards can exist in the scenario that you mentioned, cards you mentioned could, and likely should see mainboard play (ex. Fade into Antiquity) as removal is almost always relevant when it has more than one mode. The potential for dick-ish things already exists in running cards like Choke, Tsunami, etc., but the potential to run them in a side/wishboard is literally inviting feel-bads. All it will likely take is a handful of people in a play group or LGS to do it, before it becomes commonplace to do the same thing. After all, if you're at a disadvantage to not, then you're likely to adopt what puts you on an even playing field. Some people also don't have the luxury of an LGS, or multiple potential groups to play at so switching in the event of "adapt or leave" isn't always available.

    I would argue that sideboards aren't as big of a thing because they're not official and people don't expect to be able to use them regularly. The arms race is a thing. Especially at an LGS for events - if there's a buy in and a prize is to be won, people play to win.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Wishes
    I DO feel like cards like Shadowborn Apostle and Relentless Rats are against the flavor of the format. The fact that it's been legal for as long as it has and that some have embraced it, means that those cards have value as multiples are needed. If they were banned this far into the format's life, people would lose entire decks on the decision to ban them. It's not something that the RC would ever do.

    My intention isn't to be a fearmonger, but to stress that the potential for abuse is present. The potential for game length to be increased is very much present for sideboarding. Again, I will reference my previous points that cards like Sylvan Primordial and Prophet of Kruphix were banned; not for the fair play that they saw, but because of how they were abused.

    Sideboards, in general, have the potential to drag out games more than anything else, which is effectively a requirement to allow wishes to work. Deciding which card(s) out of 99 can be swapped out post game 1 or beyond depending on which decks switch and who is playing what... the odds that sideboards aren't used how they are for constructed formats is unlikely. Dragging out games at an LGS, let alone at a kitchen table, doesn't seem worth them being official.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Wishes
    This seems like less of a point against what I said and more of a grasp at...something...
    Act of Treason effects are plentiful. Taking or exchanging control effects as well. Copy spells, etc. Resources can be shared, stolen or copied; control of them can change whether it be permanent or temporary.

    What doesn't change is ownership. You can never shuffle a card you don't own into your library. Things that are inherently yours, does not change when a game starts or ends. You still only ever had access to the 100 cards in your library, that you built and shuffled up before hand. That a card outside of your decklist could be shuffled into your deck is problematic.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
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