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  • posted a message on Need some input on a BlackWhite deck I'm developing.
    Excluding tabby you are running 22 mana lands. 22 lands and smallpox is a huge no-no, small pox in Legacy (pox) decks run 25/6 lands, and you are very vulnerable to Wasteland yourself. What will happen is your angels will stop Lilly OTV going up or simply get discarded. Decks need to benefit from Lilly going up or become hellbent naturally quickly. Ghostly Prison is a reasonably good card with mass mana denial, but you are not going to protect Lilly with it. I would say Lilly last hope is a must, it is a way better wincon than 5 mana critters.

    8 win con critters is way too many, and Exalted A is a weak card.

    You really lack any ramp, and would be better off with Lingering souls in the mix (see Lilly's plus ones plus smallpox). You need to be able to profit from small pox. You could try Flagstones of trokair, and Mox Diamonds are popular in this type of deck.

    Any B heavy deck runs Urborg, tomb of yawgmoth as standard. Basics are key to Legacy, and Godless shrine is not where you want to be. Not being wastelanded and Blood Mooned turn 1 is where you want to be. Mox diamond is common in BW Pox lists to circumvent Moon and fix mana whilst ramping.

    Cursed scroll could offer board control and make you benefit from hellbent.
    You lack draw, some options are Bob (unlikely with your top end), phyrexian arena (too expensive). Some of the colorless lands offer a bit, sanitarium can filter lands, for example.

    I would recommend after you settle on a main a board of 4 Leyline OTV (for storm, graveyard decks like reanimator, dredge etc.) and 4 Leyline of sanctity (for storm, burn and discard heavy decks and many more that win with a targeted ability like Helm/Leyline decks) plus 2-3 chains of mephistopheles, for Brainstorm decks.

    The main issue you have is speed, Sol land decks with Eldrazi and Rabblemasters deployed T1 will be problematic, storm goes off T2 5% of the time and t3 much more regularly, and you don't have that much t1 interaction.

    Traditionally this type of deck runs either ensnaring bridge or similar or is more of a dead guy ale deck.
    Posted in: Developing (Legacy)
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    Quote from ktkenshinx »
    Quote from drmarkb »
    The data I really want is threefold

    (a) format event attendance, mapped over set releases and large events, and bans/unbans, over a five year period.
    This would give us a clue as to what each ban or unban accomplishes from event attendance pov.

    It may also enable us to see how much the health of one format affects the attendance of another, although disentangling the data to isolate the effects might be challenging. When modern attendance drops where does it go? When overall attendance goes down does it go down proportionally for each format?

    (B) and (C) are probably hard to come by and likely out of our reach. For (A), we do have full attendance data for all Modern GP and SCG Open/Classic events basically for the existence of the format. I think we'd also have some Hareruya event attendance, at least for their bigger events, as well as some of the Italian events. It's definitely not FNM-level data, but it's something, and one could try and identify trends in that data as related to B&R decisions.


    Yes, I expect neither the b or c part of my data wants.
    It would be interesting looking at larger events, but I would guess many have their own unique factors associated with them. E. G. a modern GP placed in an expensive city or with a Legacy GP nearby the month after might be lower than it otherwise would be. Fnm and online data would be ideal.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    The data I really want is threefold

    (a) format event attendance, mapped over set releases and large events, and bans/unbans, over a five year period.
    This would give us a clue as to what each ban or unban accomplishes from event attendance pov.

    It may also enable us to see how much the health of one format affects the attendance of another, although disentangling the data to isolate the effects might be challenging. When modern attendance drops where does it go? When overall attendance goes down does it go down proportionally for each format?



    (b) the wotc feedback data from survey, currently garnered after each set. Do a large pc of people moan about formats in the freeform section?

    (c) pack sales per set, which could tell us if total event attendance is correlated in any way with pack sales, and again we could see the masters set effect on attendance, which I wager would be negligible. If a Std set sells well does it influence Modern uptake? I suspect that if a set sells especially well has little impact on Modern.

    I would not be surprised if wotc made recent ban decisions that were more influenced by event attendance (and the need to sell masters sets in the one off case of Jace). Total supposition, of course, but the data is not out there.


    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    People want bans/unbans on how the format feels to them. Not on how it is. Data needs to be taken on how people feel about the format, not just on how fast the data says it is.

    I find it interesting length of games are being measured in turns, not actions, and not actual time to complete a game. A turn takes longer if there are more things to do on it. Cheap spells, moxen, force, bainstorm, and fast mana (moxen, sol lands) mean that a t3 game of Vintage or Legacy takes longer than Modern t3 wins. Perhaps when esyablishing how fast games are should be measured on completed actions by each player.
    Also the difference between game one and two needs to be noted. With hateful cards like RIP and Stony Silence about game twos often end up way longer than game one.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    Imagine you are a non Standard player.
    Outside of the US why would you buy into a top deck that was not just a bunch of multi-use staples if you did not have the cards already?

    Once a year pptqs that could easily be sanctioned as sealed by your local LGS? A Modern grand prix every now and then in Europe which would cost more than the deck just to get to? The mkm series? That one random WMCQ that was modern? Actually that last one I went to the semis with in my small country.... with a landkill deck that preyed on all the efficient decks of the day like Affinity and Infect. Which rather proves the point, all those decks got wrecked by what appeared to them to be random.dec, there was no advantage in playing those acknowledged top decks if half the room was content to turn up with fringe decks, some of which had great matches against specific top decks. There is no incentive to invest into top decks, there is no real grind circuit available in the format outside of the US. The same is true of Legacy, with fewer opportunities for competitive play, but once you buy your big RL cards they maintain and ultimately gain value over the long term. In other words I can make money by owning key cards in the format, which makes me at least more likely to invest in them.

    There is not much point building for a meta of top decks if people are slinging Soul Sisters et al, and most LGS stores in Europe at least are full of such mini metas with decks from years ago still about. It is what makes the idea of data analysis of the meta totally laughable outside of the US. There is no meta data that will be relevant to your local LGS, which is about the only place modern is occuring on this side of the pond. Until wotc give a reason to play Modern or a pathway for the format, things will continue this way, and I doubt if they want to do so.



    Oh, and in response to measuring interactivity, I don't think you can quantify it. Interactivity is very, very subjective. You can not measure it any more than you can measure fun. People either feel they had an interactive game or they don't, but people experiencing the same game will view it differently. Cards that are interactive can be used very uninteractively.
    It is very difficult to pinpoint when they are interactive abd when they are not.
    There are things you can measure and things you can't, the big fallacy of so much politics is that everything can be meaningfully measured, and to a high degree of precision. Measuring win rates is a lot easier than interactivity, for the reasons highlighted in the post above.

    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on Teferi - and why he shouldn't exist
    Hard to swallow pills:


    - No amount of whining about any of the above will ever lead the creators of MtG to change their design philosophies.


    You were totally correct until the above statement.
    It was whinging about certain philosophies and WOTC data collection that reduced Prison strategies to a sideshow that every now and then slips through the net.Bye-bye landkill. Weak counters and discard, stronger critters all a result of newbies whinging they could not win with their 6/6's for 5 mana while the opponent destroyed their land, hit them with discard or countered it. That is what gave mid range mush and critter combat standards where the best PW shell won.

    It was whinging by high profile Pros about Standard having questions > answers that bought about more recent developments where they print more answer cards after the eras of energy and copters et al. where so few answers existed. I have picked up more eternal format answer cards in the last two years than the previous five.

    It was whinging about Jace et al that bought a rapid finish (in development terms) to the focus on the story characters.


    Internet whinging has done loads to change the way the game has been produced. Its just that the OP is in a group of one whinging, which does rather less. I do agree about the rest of your statement and the sentiment behind it.

    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on New Masters Set.
    How does "Penny Masters" tackle the problem of high entry for Legacy, Modern, Commander



    That is not a problem for WOTC.

    High entry to Standard is a problem for them.

    High entry to Legacy (and vintage) helps their model, forcing people into fewer formats, no matter how good older formats are.
    High entry to Modern is an opportunity for them, keeping people in Standard for a long time whilst they build up their cards and fiscal power and giving them a non rotating format to aspire to; when then they do eventually make the jump guess who is holding out their hand to sell overpriced lottery tickets- ideas such as masters sets-? Yep WOTC.

    There is no high entry to Commander as the vast majority people proxy, comp EDH is a tiny fraction of EDH, most LGS have tables full of half finished EDH decks- but even if this were not the case commander sells Standard packs where otherwise unplayable chaff becomes someones' idea of a commander deck.

    In short problems for players wanting cards WOTC don't print enough of is not a problem for WOTC, it is part of their model.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    Blue is very strong in Modern, but not strong at doing what it does elsewhere.
    Context is all, in GRN there is a dumb vanilla 4/5 for 5 in black, and often people say in draft "why are you not playing that?", whereas in most formats an identical card is pants. Cards don't exist in a vacuum, and neither do colours.

    Blue gets lots of goodies, from Snappy to Thing in the ice which is now spiking, a decent tribe or two in Spirits and Merfolk, It has generic bounce that deals with almost any hate permanent. It has 1 and 2 cc strong soft counters or narrow hard ones counterspells but not free ones outside of Pact of Negation and Shoal. The colourless stuff in Modern all gives options for dealing with bins and problem lands. Mana fixing is fine in the format. The only thing blue can't do is Daze and Force, and as anyone in Legacy will tell you these are not great anti aggro measures. The reason why blue based control is weaker than Legacy is actually the selection. When you can't Brainstorm that Terminus it makes all the difference, when you can't get rid if the useless anti critter card and shuffle it away, control struggles.

    The entire discussion above relates to creatures. Aggro/Midrsnge/control are bring defined but are all about creatures and ignores the fact that big mana exists. Other weird control/prison decks lurk in the fringes too, ever seen Martyr proc against some of the aggro decks? Hilarious.

    You can always lose to a random 8 rack or big red or whatever in any event, so the idea that X vs Y archetype is an issue is always going to be a problem.
    For what it is worth, I hate midrange, more than any archetype in Modern, it was the best of everything and the most forgiving of play mistakes. I saw many a player in the days of Deathrite play jund like a dog but still tear up trees.

    The way the format is there are few decks that punish people for playing dudes. Bridge stands out, and it is rather fragile. Having answers to creatures then yields the issue of the wrong answer, something that can be solved only by better selection. That to me is the only issue I have with Modern, I would like better selection, not Brainstorm, of course, but more lands and spells with Scry on them, but it is hard to do when decks like Storm lurk in the fringes if the format. I would rather the format had better non creature options in the early part if the curve, but in reality they are designing with Standard in mind and today everything is creatures, creatures, creatures. I accept Modern for what it is, just I accept the ban list is operated to help Wizards sell packs and keep attendance high, rather than a desire to ferment perfect metas.





    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    For the record I don't have complaints, I don't want bans and I play Legacy but rarely play blue myself. I don't want fow/waste/tutoring in Modern, but it is the absence of such cards combined with a format of almost similar speed that make people feel the format lacks interactivity.
    Clearly the term "interactive" will mean different things to different people, if enough people say it lacks interactivity, and it is apparently a common complaint, then to them it must lack interactivity. It us no good arguing this by pointing out "it is interactive", there is no metric to measure interactivity. You can measure speed, win rates, etc. but the feeling of " I got to play abd interact", not really measurable in the same way.
    Legacy does not have people complaining about interactivity. Now I can't proove why they don't complain about it, but I don't think it is unreasinable to suggest the existence of Force et al makes the players feel their format is more interactive.

    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on Soldier Stompy
    Thalia is such a nonbo with the second ability of Lavinia, it is a shame but probably deliberate.........
    Posted in: Developing (Legacy)
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    Quote from idSurge »
    Because people do quit over bans.

    You dont think 3 bans that hit nearly every top deck, hard, wouldnt cause a huge amount of panic around the format?


    This, basically, is spot on.
    Bannings hurt players, and help people like me who move cards. I make lots of money off bannings, selling banned decks well before they get the hammer, and even I would shy away from 3 big bannings like this, it would kill the format, forever. Nobody wants that, even if there is a short term killing, the long term effects would hurt.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on The State of Modern Thread (B&R 26/11/2018)
    I think the big issue with Modern is the disconnect between higher level and competitive play allied to the financial aspect, at least in Europe.

    In Standard, unless your store is very, very casual, the best decks will be represented. In Legacy, this is a given, even if Europe is less blue than the US or less Delver-y than Japan was. In Modern I can see very little evidence of the top decks being played in the numbers they should be, at least in Europe, even at larger events. The lack of competitive ladder for Modern, coupled with the price means that by and large people are happy to stick with their deck/s. This is true in Legacy, of course, but the power level of the format is so, so high that a "bad" legacy choice can still do well.

    In Modern the old PPTQ system failed rapidly...I could play Modern once a year but only to qualify for an event that was not Modern. Or I can play FNM. Or travel to an event with Modern, but wait, oh, it has a Legacy event at the same time.
    Without that ladder for higher tier play there was no incentive to change to the best decks. Now as it happens I don't like the "best decks" I like the best prison decks, no mean task in Modern, but the principle holds. Why bother to learn top decks and acquire cards that are spiking in price when there is nothing to do with them beyond FNM? Why drop 400-800 GBP on a deck when I can grab a couple of duals or RL cards for Legacy that hold their value? Thus Wizard's decisions, correctly based on top tier play, don't really impact the vast majority of Modern enthusiasts outside of the US that has a real Modern scene.

    Modern is all sorts of linear flavours (or flavors, for the US readers) lined up against each other. Without a Wasteland and Force of will police this will always be the case while sideboards are just 15 cards and tutoring is awful. But when the format is always everyone's second or third choice format, and the competitive scene is so weak outside of the US, does it actually matter? I enjoy Modern, I don't enjoy 80/20 matches, but overall, when so little is on the line in the format, I can't bring myself to care too much. If Wizards improved the competitive ladder for Modern players then the format would get more scrutiny. As it is, it is a flawed but enjoyable format that gets very little compared to the vast number of players it has.
    Posted in: Modern Archives
  • posted a message on [Primer] R/W Prisons ("Sun and Moon" etc.)
    At this point in time RW needs something that makes UWx a winnable match and something to make the deck perform faster against the linear decks without too much disadvantage. The pyro prison lists offee a fair bit. The answers are there for some decks, but selection is still awful.
    I just can't see it right now.
    I guess given where the meta is I would go all out for E bridge and take my chances....
    The new cards are ok, I can't see them being what the deck in any of its forms need.
    Posted in: Control
  • posted a message on Soldier Stompy
    For me it is not enough.
    It could replace preeminent, sure- but so could many things- plenty of humans at least fit the bill, and a few soldiers.
    Maybe the deck could go UW with Lavina, I don't know. But Tithe taker is not good enough for my money.
    Posted in: Developing (Legacy)
  • posted a message on [Deck] Pillow Fort Prison- White-X Enchantment Control
    V sorry, will grab it now, totally forgot- snowed at work and with card sales/trades...........

    rw pillow fMagic OnlineOCTGN2ApprenticeBuy These Cards
    8 plains
    1 mountain
    3 sacred foundary
    4 temple of triumph
    2 boros garrison
    1 rugged prairie
    2 nykthos, shrine to nyx
    1 tectonic edge
    1 zhalfirin void

    4 leyline of sanctity

    1 porphyry nodes
    2 greater auramancy
    2 rest in peace
    4 runed halo
    3 suppression field
    3 seal away
    1 luminarch ascension

    1 phyrexian unlife
    3 ghostly prison
    1 idyllic tutor

    2 helliod, god of the sun
    2 cast out
    1 outpost siege

    4 sphere of safety
    1 starfield of nyx
    1 obliterate



    There are a couple of minor nonbos in the deck- suppression field interacts poorly with cast out's cycling, and heliod/luminarch. That said it does a lot of slowing down and whilst it does not slow Tron down enough to be effective game one, it slows a lot of other stuff down, inhibiting some combos, pws, equip costs, sac abilities and fetchlands. Post Obliterate the S field is rude as hell. You tend to be in control of when SF gets played, too. It is quite an easy deck to play, apart from learning sequences and when to drop situational cards. Once you learn the matches and don't screw yourself by playing the cards in the wrong order it works well. Laying Starfield can be terrible against a deck with mass sweepers with its bits locked down, for example.

    The manabase is a tad awkward to get used to, being too gredy and using karoo lands to get extra scrys is not always right, under pressure you can't keep cutting yourself off mana wise with CIP tapped.
    RIP and Starfield are opposed in one sense, although Starfield does operate in two modes and it is the opalescence mode is what is used the most- when you have a Tron deck under a sphere or b moon witha stony back up quite often laying the Opalesence and swinging.

    The basic package eats critter decks with careful play, tending to enjoy moderately positive matches vs. humans, death's shadow and very positive matcches against any other critter decks still lurking out there that can't generate lots of mana like elves. Spirits is harder as it has more disruption than humans in the 75. Regular Tron is v hard game 1, hybrid elda tron fine. Affinity is decent game one, v favoured g2. Storm is a bye if you know what you are doing and often if you don't. Matches like UW depend on if you get to cast Obliterate or not and if your opponent counters certain innocuous looking cards like Greater Auramancy, a good UW player is favoured. Amulet and scapeshift over the match are close, boggles is pretty easy if you draw runed halo and get a big tax down. Elves is not good.

    Deck has a fair few free wins, overall it tends to draw too much, and it does much, much better if you know what your opponent is on.
    Posted in: Deck Creation (Modern)
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