• RE: Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today

    @nedleeds said in Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today:


    Misstep hadn't begun its corrosive incestuous climb because Delve, Dack, Pyro/Mentor hadn't made Free into +1 mana and a Token.

    What an awesome top 8 in to this date one of the largest paper events ever. Icing on top was beta power for prizes.

    That that was seven years ago I think illustrates my point: which is that Vintage has been pretty suboptimal for a while, but that we are currently inhabiting one of the better versions of the format.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today

    @tittliewinks22 said in Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today:

    2007/2008 was my favorite era. SCV and 5c stax were my jam. Also goblin welder was much more enjoyable in a world without mm.

    SCV was 2009, not 2007 or 2008. The first half of 2007 was dominated by gifts and pitch long. The second half was dominated by Gush, and then MUD decks. The first of half of 2008 was Gush decks, Flash, and Shops. 5c Stax wasn't played much at all in 2007 or 2008.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today

    My questions was an open invitation - I wasn't prescribing dates and times players could suggest as a 'better Vintage format.'

    So, if you have specific dates you'd identify as being that better format, please feel free to offer them. I was simply going back to Khans to illustrate that the format has been pretty lousy since Khans.

    IMO, some of the all time best Vintage formats (as measured by diversity of the metagame and quality of game play) include (in no particular order):

    • June, 2008-Sept, 2008 (the re-restriction of Gush until the printing of Tezzeret and the errata on Time Vault)
    • Pretty much the entirety of 2006
    • January, 2002 (restriction of Fact or Fiction) until October, 2002 (when Onslaught was released)

    I don't think anything format with Lodestone Golem unrestricted can qualify as a 'high quality' format.

    As for your other question: is Vintage fun? Yes, as I said, I played in several Vintage leagues recently, and pretty much every game, not just match, has been high quality and intense. Almost exhaustingly so, actually.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • Myth of the Golden Age: In Defense of Vintage Today

    I hear a surprising number of of players, of late, complaining that they are unhappy with Vintage of late, that the metagame is stagnant, that PO decks are too fast, or any other number of complaints.

    I look at the format, and I see a really healthy, diverse metagame. I discussed this in my article here and our [recent podcast](link url).

    If you think that Vintage is so bad right now, can you please tell me when exactly you felt that Vintage was so much better than it was now?

    I'm genuinely curious. Be specific. Give me dates.

    Breaking up Vintage into 8 different periods since Khans of Tarkir was released in October, 2014, demarcated by major new printings and by restrictions, I'd love for someone to tell me which period they felt was actually better. Let's look back:

    1. Was it from October, 2014 to January, 2015? If so, that's hard to imagine. Treasure Cruise dominated the format and was promptly restricted.

    Anyone saying that they loved this format has to answer the question: why did Treasure Cruise need to be restricted, then?

    1. Was it January, 2015 until Sept 28, 2015? I remember this period well. We had a big NYSE and season 2 and 3 of the VSL. If this period was so great, then why were TWO cards restricted at the end of it, including Chalice of the Void and Dig Through Time? All I heard were incessant complaining that led to the restriction of both. If anything, Dig Through Time was even better than Treasure Cruise.

    2. Was it Sept 28, 2015 until April 4, 2016? I remember good things about this format. It wasn't that bad. But if it was truly so much better than now, then why did it culminate in the restriction of Lodestone Golem? If that metagame was really so great, then surely LSG didn't have to be restricted.

    3. OK OK - All of those periods resulted in a restriction. But what about the period of April 4, 2016, until Kaladesh was printed at the end of September, 2016? Maybe April 4-Sept 30, was a better period?

    If that was really so great, then why was that the period in which players complained the most about Gush? There were more angry posts about Gush than almost any other time. Also, the metagame breakdown had Gush at 35% of Top 8s - which was almost as high as Treasure Cruise was before it got whacked.

    1. Well, what about the period from Kaladesh until April, 2017? That metagame was probably better than the summer before it, as PO was released, but players were not all happy about Walking Ballista in that period. And, in any case, it ended with the restriction of Gush AND Gitaxian Probe on April 24th. So, it's really hard to make the case that that metagame was any better.

    2. Ok, but didn't things settle after the restriction of Gush? Wasn't April 24-August 28, 2017 any better?
      Not by a long shot. That summer, Shops and Mentor decks put on such a performance, that at the end of August, the DCI restricted BOTH Mentor and Thorn. That was one of the statistically worst metagames we've ever had. Shops were 40% of Top 8s in the Vintage Challenges.

    3. Did things improve after that? Not unless you think that a vintage championship top 8 that was 5 Shop decks and 3 Oath decks was an improvement.

    In contrast, from January to June 30, this year, the Vintage Challenge results had this Top 8 metagame:
    23% Shops
    17% TX (Mentor and Delver)
    17% PO
    13% Dredge
    10% Oath
    8% BUG(r)

    That's the most statistically balanced metagame Vintage has had, at least, since the Summer of 2014.

    For people going so far as to even "boycott" the format right now, I just have to wonder how this format is any worse than any other instantiation of vintage we've experienced since 2014.

    In fact, instead of apologize for the format. It's miles better than it's been in many years. Is it perfect? No. The SCG P9 tournament still had too many Shops in the Top 8 for my taste. But the format is by any known statistical measure, much more diverse than its been in years. Hell, we just had Survival win the most recent major Vintage tournament.

    Vintage is still the deepest, and most strategically intricate format in Magic, and this is frankly one of the better Vintage formats we've had. Is it perfect? Of course not. Very few Vintage metagames have been. But it's far better than most.

    PO is not nearly as dominant as its critics suggest. It's won only one of the four 100+ player paper Vintage tournaments held this year so far. And it's only been the best performing deck on MTGO for one month this year, as measured by Top 8 appearances (February). It's usually the 3rd or 2nd best performing deck.

    I won two leagues over the labor day weekend, and even went on a 14 match win streak (which Hiromichi Ito unkindly snapped), playing neither Shops nor PO. The Leagues are well populated with 110 ish players last I checked, and the challenges are still regularly getting 50-65 players, which is where they've been for a year now.

    There have been lots of wretched Vintage metagames in the last 5 years. This isn't one of them.

    Vintage is actually pretty great right now, and I'm psyched for Eternal Weekend.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: Collectors and International Edition Cards for Sanctioned Play

    @p3temangus said in Collectors and International Edition Cards for Sanctioned Play:

    @joshuabrooks My main point is because it won't hurt anything, and the proxy precedent has already been set, then why not?

    I think it opens up a can of worms for them with World Championship decks then too.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: Semi-restrictions (two-of limit to cards)

    Personally I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with the idea, but I'm not holding my breath that it'll happen. I'm not worried about the argument that it would make things more difficult for vintage players - there's already an absurd amount of information a vintage player needs to have memorized to play the game ... 25 years of one-off keyword abilities, rules changes, errata. How many cards in the average vintage deck have oracle text that matches their printed text, 30%? Deck construction rules are barely a drop in the bucket, especially considering a player can verify before the tournament starts (there's are plenty of tools that check legality for you), and never have to memorize or think of it ever again. I don't have any reason to think that a semi-restriction system would make the format worse (and for that matter, even though I know boerma was joking, a 3-of rule wouldn't bother me at all, either)

    That said, there's an unspoken assumption here that Wizards is having difficulty achieving their desired outcomes through blunt restrictions, and that this would be a tool they could use to more precisely create the outcome they want. I think it's a mistake to assume that Wizards has very strong opinions on what the format should look like, or that they even think there's any consensus metagame target or problem that needs to be addressed.

    I think that the amount of work this would take to put together, and more importantly, how it would look to people who DON'T play vintage, both dwarf any desire they have to make the format different than it is now.

    (but as an amateur game designer, I'm all about it)

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: Collectors and International Edition Cards for Sanctioned Play

    This is an old argument and most people seem to be firmly on one side or the other, and wizards has never even hinted at allowing them.

    I will say, the interesting aspect of CE is that it is already within striking distance of where moxes and duals were priced 1 yr ago, and that’s only with one unofficial format (old school) allowing them. I don’t see this helping make Vintage that much more accessible other than for old school players that can convert to occasional Vintage tournament play.

    I would argue that if they became legal, there would be almost zero price benefit to the format, as demand would quickly outstrip the addition of 13,000 cards. As old school has shown us, demand for mint CE might overtake demand for beat power/duals.

    I agree with you, I just don’t think it will help that much, and might even drive prices higher.

    posted in Vintage Community
  • RE: [GOR] Mnemonic Betrayal

    @wfain said in [GOR] Mnemonic Betrayal:

    The one interesting thing is that you can chain your opponent’s Time Walk with these.

    Wizards of the coast gave us this card as a preview and I mentioned this interaction in our podcast went live today.


    posted in Single-Card Discussion
  • RE: SMIP # 82 - Guilds Preview Card, Asia Vintage Champs, & Metagame Review posted in Vintage News
  • SMIP # 82 - Guilds Preview Card, Asia Vintage Champs, & Metagame Review


    Kevin Cron and Steve Menendian bring your their preview card for Guilds of Ravnica – Mnemonic Betrayal – as well an analysis of the Asia Vintage Championship and the 2018 Vintage Challenges.

    Podcast (somanyinsaneplays): Download (Duration: 1:56:35 — 100.8MB)

    0:01:00: Announcements
    0:05:40: Guilds of Ravnica Preview: Mnemonic Betrayal
    0:38:30: Asia Vintage Championship Results
    1:14:00: Metagame Update
    Total Runtime: 1:56:35

    posted in Vintage News