Vintage Restricted List Discussion



  • @khahan said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    @nedleeds said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    @naixin said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    My 2 cents. I think the format needs to be changed. I don't think restricting a sphere is the best course of action. I think if we ignore finances, the best course would be to restrict shops, unrestricted chalice, unrestrict gush, and restrict mentor. I play stax, and I think chalice will give us a more diverse shops representation.

    What is 'shops' when you don't have shop? So you'd restrict shop but keep Golem restricted. I don't think you've thought this through. You could unrestrict Golem clearly. Any deck playing blue mess would be so over the top advantaged against any deck at that point I can't imagine the incentives you'd need to create to induce anybody to not include Islands.

    I haven't exactly hidden my thoughts that Shops should be restricted. But the whole point of restricting shops is that you either restrict that one card or continue to restrict artifacts printed in the future. If workshops were to be restricted I think a corresponding unrestriction of both Chalice and golem should happen.

    Sure, but I was questioning the naming convention. If you restrict Shop there is no Shops deck. Nobody is just putting 3 City of Traitors, Caverns or Darksteel Citadels in the deck. It's going to be unplayable in the face of something like the White Eldrazi decks from before Aether Revolt. White Eldrazi has a lower ceiling but a more diverse set of lock pieces and threats. Shop decks are historically filled with unplayable crap that is only playable because Shop is unrestricted. It's already hamstrung by having next to no library manipulation.


  • TMD Supporter

    The naming convention for Workshop decks, whether it's restricted or not, is whatever Raffaele Forino says it is. He is both so terrifying when he's angry and yet so passionate and genuine when he's not. That, combined with creating the framework for nearly every successful Lodestone-era Workshop decklist, means his word goes. If Mishra's Workshop gets restricted, and he tells you to still call it a Workshop deck, you still call it a Workshop deck.



  • @hierarchnoble said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    The naming convention for Workshop decks, whether it's restricted or not, is whatever Raffaele Forino says it is. He is both so terrifying when he's angry and yet so passionate and genuine when he's not. That, combined with creating the framework for nearly every successful Lodestone-era Workshop decklist, means his word goes. If Mishra's Workshop gets restricted, and he tells you to still call it a Workshop deck, you still call it a Workshop deck.

    Pretty sure he's just quitting if he's that passionate about shop and it gets shitcanned.


  • TMD Supporter

    @nedleeds said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    Pretty sure he's just quitting if he's that passionate about shop and it gets shitcanned.

    Now now, don't be petty.



  • Re: restricting workshop.

    I think a move that would polarize the playerbase that extensively would ideally occur only after a great deal of playtesting and analysis of what the format might look like after the fact.

    And bluntly, we all know that such format playtesting and analysis is completely unlikely. Restricting Workshop is precisely the sort of thing that would likely harm the vintage community more than it helps it. I doubt there are hordes of players just waiting to play Vintage if only there wasn't that pesky Workshop deck (and if there are, the Eldrazi decks will say hello). I get that some players hate playing against any deck that does not conform to their vision of what magic is, but "I don't like that style of game so it needs restricting" isn't healthy, either..

    As b/r discussion spreads to virtually every thread, it is very obvious that many players have strong opinions about the deck that workshops enables. It's precisely this reason that the b/r list should probably never be run by committee and one vaguely hopes that the DCI isn't just listening to loud voices on the internet.

    Does the Workshop deck need to be weakened? Probably. It gained a lot in the last year, some of which has taken the last few months to crystallize into the hyper-aggressive monster that it has become.

    But to hit Workshop...that is the sort of thing that shatters confidence in the format, the new direction of b/r policy as being carried out by the DCI, and would cause a lot of bad blood in the community. I'm just not seeing a big enough reward to warrant such a move- especially given that "keep restricting things" is not what most of us think is a great place for the format to be headed.



  • @winterstar said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    I get that some players hate playing against any deck that does not conform to their vision of what magic is, but "I don't like that style of game so it needs restricting" isn't healthy, either..

    I understand this and agree with this general sentiment (which is why when the issue comes up I dont mind stating my position to restrict workshops but I'm not out crusading for it to happen. To be honest, if it doesn't get restricted it wont change my feelings towards vintage at all). However, that is exactly what we saw with gush over the past few months and mentor. A small handful of players crusading and complaining that the games were unfun and boring. Its proven to be an effective method.



  • 2cents about the Library of Alexandria unrestriction thing, I would be afraid that Shops could use them, along with Coercive Portal. I wouldn't hammer in on Workshop, since there are just 3 Shop Cards restricted (Chalice, Golem, and Trini). This is nothing against all the TX Engine Parts that are restricted. Sphere of Resistance is a Shop only card, and really abuses the Symetry between Shop mana and Sphereeffects. There are not that many Sphere effects left that are restrict worthy, so I'd try them at first.

    And about Mentor, he is on a Power Level with Tinker, imo.



  • @typeonestorm Library of alexandria is the antithesis of what a workshop prison deck wants to do, you want to leverage the tempo produced by your superior mana production to lock the opponent out (ie dumping your hand in the first turns of the game). Library wants you to slow down your development and play an attrition game trading 1 for 1 with your opponent's threats while you are outdrawing them a little more every turn.
    The current problem with workshops aren't the lock pieces, it's that the deck is so fast at killing you that it only needs 1/2 speedbumps before it kills you. Restricting lock pieces is not the way to go imo. We need workshop decks to slow down and a little more prison control oriented than tempo oriented. Foundry inspector and Walking ballista would be the real culprits from this viewpoint. If workshops weren't so low to the ground and mentor was restricted, shops would be weak to creatures again and decks like BUG fish, oath of druids and such would be better able to prey on them.



  • @typeonestorm yeah. Shops... at least as we know it now, just wants to dump it's hand onto the table as fast as possible. I can't imagine a deck with taxing effects, aggro creatures, and no counterspells, ever staying on the 7 cards needed to make use of Library, at the same time that they actually stay in a vintage game...

    However... I do find it ironic that Kevin suggested this. He might not have thought it through, since, I have it on pretty good authority that Dredge is his least favorite deck... and the implications for Dredge might be pretty incredible.



  • @guest said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    I believe that if you want to stop the workshop on mentor mess, you need to do three things, and I hope this is WOTC's address of the situation:

    "We misjudged the format when we restricted Lodestone Golem and Chalice of the Void. It's obvious to us that Mishra's Workshop is the real problem. Monastery Mentor decks have also been a problem, both from the Tempo and the Combo perspective. However, we learned from the Lodestone Golem fiasco that restricting the creature does not solve the problem. For this reason, we made our changes.

    Lodestone Golem is unrestricted in Vintage
    Chalice of the Void is unrestricted in Vintage
    Preordain is restricted in Vintage.
    Mishra's Workshop is restricted in Vintage.
    Paradoxical Outcome is restricted in Vintage.

    Mentor seems more pertinent than Preordain in this list but I suspect the rest of these suggestions are highly defensible. I don't think Paradoxical can be restricted at the same time as the rest of those just because we don't know if it would be a problem with the other changes in place.



  • So, I've not played Vintage in a while. Mostly because of real-life concerns (toddlers and work take up amazing amounts of time), but I have retained interest in the format, and been reading up things that have been happening. I have a few thoughts:

    I think Mentor is worse than Tinker. Some people keep saying Mentor is "only" a 2/2 creature for 3. It's not. Mentor is two Storm spells that keep storming after being cast. For three mana. With a free 2/2 body attached.
    The only finisher that even resembles that kind of power is Mind's Desire, and that costs 6(!) mana without a free body, and only keeps going during the same turn, if you're lucky, and it's unrestricted. I don't see anyone arguing Desire is safe for unrestriction.
    I don't know enough about Gush to have a valid opinion on the matter, but (correct me if I'm wrong), Gush was played in pretty much all blue decks prior to its restriction, correct? Post-restriction, the only Blue deck that remained viable was Mentor. That, to me, says two things:
    A) Gush was unarguably the best blue draw engine - everyone used it (reducing deckbuilding choices, although not necessarily strategic diversity). Hence, IMO, it was a viable target for restriction (but not for the reason given), but since it did allow a variety of strategies to abuse it, it was not a necessary target. Brainstorm was much the same, and was allowed in the format for much longer. Again, I'm no Gush expert, and whether the ubiquitous card in question was Gush, Brainstorm, or whatever, doesn't really matter.
    B) Post-restriction of Gush, only Mentor remained as a viable Blue deck, because of 1) the density of 0-1 mana restricted card drawing/filtering spells combined with 2) Mentor is busted.

    From B), there are three possibilities (I think). One, Mentor is a fair target for restriction - it's broken. However, I don't think this will end Workshop's dominance. I may be wrong there. It's possible Mentor decks are too good against the decks that beat Workshop, and that with Mentor gone, those decks will once again have free(er) range to feed on it. It's also possible that with Mentor, the one thing that kept at least a deck in the fight gone, Workshops will simply reign supreme, and that part of the problem will have to be addressed some other way.

    A third possibility is that a critical mass of restricted draw spells has been reached, Mentor is only a symptom and the blue tempo decks will simply switch to the next best threat and keep dominating the Blue part of the metagame without significantly shaking up the rest of it. I don't think this is the case.
    IF it is, though, short of outright banning some cards (against the point of Vintage, IMO), or banning specific card combinations, maybe there should simply be a restriction on how many restricted cards a deck can play?

    OK, enough rambling. If you've made it through all that, kudo's.



  • my personal next b&r:

    restriction:
    mishra's workshop

    unrestriction:
    Lodestone Golem
    Flash
    Y. bargain



  • Why are so many people advocating for the restriction of Mishra's workshop ? I find this very notion outrageous... The goal of Br policy is to regulate dominant decks and promote diversity not to eradicate a deck from the format completely.
    If Workshop were to be restricted the metagame would devolve into a mostly blue cannibalistic slugfest where almost everyone is playing quad missteps and flusterstorms/ white eldrazi and dredge. I doubt it would be a lot more fun than the current two deck metagame.
    I would rather advocate for the restriction of thorn or the ravager ballista combo (AND Monastery Mentor).
    The reasoning behind restricting thorn is that it is much better than sphere at the moment due to being largely asymmetric given the creature focus of the current iterations of Workshops. At the moment shops are so fast that a single thorn can be enough for them to out-tempo the opponent especially since it doesn't slow down the shops player's development at all. Restricting thorn would also give combo decks more breathing room, allowing them to take metagame shares and thus increase diversity. Mentor is so good in part because it is the best win condition under thorn of amethyst and it fights workshop on their aggressive axis.

    Restricting ballista and/or ravager alongside with mentor has the potential to increase diversity by making aggro control decks competitive again and diversifying the win conditions that blue decks use.

    I don't think that outcome needs to be touched for now, as it is vulnerable to null rod effects and artifact destruction which means that if its metagame share starts to go up, it will be relatively easy for the metagame to adapt. And if/when it starts to dominate we can always restrict it down the road.



  • 100% agree with above.



  • Restrict Thorn of Amethyst


  • TMD Supporter

    That would kill Eldrazi & Thalia decks unnecessarily.

    Thorn is a terrible target.



  • @macdeath said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    Why are so many people advocating for the restriction of Mishra's workshop ? I find this very notion outrageous... The goal of Br policy is to regulate dominant decks and promote diversity not to eradicate a deck from the format completely.

    But it's okay to eradicate Mentor Control?



  • I think if you cut 3 workshop and added city of traitors, mana vault, and maybe some metalworker, Shop decks would survive just fine. They'd be taken down a peg, but it's hardly eradicating the deck. If the deck is worthless -3 workshops, your basically saying a workshop deck can't win unless it has workshop in its opener. That's hardly the case. Workshop in the opener (plus moxen) make it degenerate, but it is not a useless nerfball without workshop by far.


  • Administrators

    @macdeath said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    The goal of Br policy is to regulate dominant decks and promote diversity not to eradicate a deck from the format completely.

    I'm curious where this idea comes from. B&R policy in other formats eliminates decks all the time, possibly more often than not. In the past two years alone, there were multiple bannings in standard and multiple bannings in modern with the express purpose of eradicating specific decks from those formats. Restrictions have been used in vintage to eliminate decks before (Gush, Flash, Gifts, Fact or Fiction, Burning Wish, et al.)

    I don't even necessarily disagree with your conclusions, but I keep running into people with strong beliefs about WotC b&r policy, despite not lining up with WotC actions. While I don't consider myself an insider, I've had a few conversations with wotc staff about b&r over the years, and pretty consistently got the message "there's no formal policy, we just make a change when people are having so little fun that they play less/buy less". This is pretty consistent with the decisions and announcements they've made in the past, and frankly, it's kind of the only strategy that makes sense from a business perspective.

    While it certainly seems from reading TMD that many people are having less fun right now, I don't think unilateral b&r policy like "don't eradicate a deck" or "make the metagame as broad as possible" or "make the restricted list as small as possible" really make any sense, or are reflective of how these decisions are being made.



  • @seksaybish said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    @macdeath said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    Why are so many people advocating for the restriction of Mishra's workshop ? I find this very notion outrageous... The goal of Br policy is to regulate dominant decks and promote diversity not to eradicate a deck from the format completely.

    But it's okay to eradicate Mentor Control?

    Mentor "control" is not an archetype it's a sub-archetype of Big Blue or aggro control depending on the builds. Eradicating it, would not relegate Big blue decks or aggro control decks to the fringe of the format until the end of time. So yeah its perfectly fine to eradicate mentor especially since it will lead to more diversity. Any card that consolidates blue decks into one sub-archetype should be hit (and have been historically). Monastery mentor is better than most 3 mana spells on the restricted list just from a power level perspective and is more resilient/easy to build around/ requires minimal investment as well. It has been in major part responsible for the aberration that the metagame has become for the last 2+ years, I don't know what more you need?

    @brass-man said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    @macdeath said in Vintage Restricted List Discussion:

    The goal of Br policy is to regulate dominant decks and promote diversity not to eradicate a deck from the format completely.

    I'm curious where this idea comes from. B&R policy in other formats eliminates decks all the time, possibly more often than not. In the past two years alone, there were multiple bannings in standard and multiple bannings in modern with the express purpose of eradicating specific decks from those formats. Restrictions have been used in vintage to eliminate decks before (Gush, Flash, Gifts, Fact or Fiction, Burning Wish, et al.)

    I don't even necessarily disagree with your conclusions, but I keep running into people with strong beliefs about WotC b&r policy, despite not lining up with WotC actions. While I don't consider myself an insider, I've had a few conversations with wotc staff about b&r over the years, and pretty consistently got the message "there's no formal policy, we just make a change when people are having so little fun that they play less/buy less". This is pretty consistent with the decisions and announcements they've made in the past, and frankly, it's kind of the only strategy that makes sense from a business perspective.

    While it certainly seems from reading TMD that many people are having less fun right now, I don't think unilateral b&r policy like "don't eradicate a deck" or "make the metagame as broad as possible" or "make the restricted list as small as possible" really make any sense, or are reflective of how these decisions are being made.

    Well, I think we can all agree that the ultimate goal of DCI policy is to make sure that tournaments are popular and to attract as much players as possible. Companies don't do anything that doesn't help them maximize profits. By extension this means a format where people have fun and good experiences. People will find more enjoyment in a dynamic metagame that is not solved and where decks with different playstyles (that appeal to different people) all have a chance at taking any event down. I am confident Wizards has figured out the different types of personalities of people that play magic and what kind of decks they like to play, so if they want to retain their player base it is in their best interest to make sure most people can play the decks they enjoy playing.

    Restricting fact and co did not eradicate the mana drain archetype. It just eliminated the most dominant iteration of that time. In the case of restricting workshop there is a case to be made that Workshop prison decks would be neutered to the point of non existence in the metagame (in a similar fashion that dredge would be if bazaar were to be restricted).

    I also don't think it's fair to compare vintage restrictions and standard bannings. Standard has a rotating card pool so decks are bound to be kicked out at some point, and it's much easier to control for WOTC. And if you look closer in standard you will see that most standards have had some recurring archetypes like "Red Deck wins" because those decks appeal to a specific kind of magic player who would likely complain/stop playing if wotc decided to eradicate their favorite archetype.
    In the case of vintage when you make a change it is almost irremediable and it can have consequences for a much longer time, and you are taking out an archetype that has likely been in the format for decades. In the case of vintage I believe that you don't want to eradicate any of the pillars just regulate them so they don't asphyxiate the metagame. An ideal vintage metagame (at least following my vision) would have competitive decks for each pillar that interact with each other and create interesting metagame dynamics and deckbuilding tensions.

    I like to compare the metagame to a market and archetypes to companies/products, If a company gets too much share of the market it gains monopoly power and the government has to step in by imposing sanctions on the said company to promote healthy competition. In magic it's the same, If a deck starts to perform too well in top 8s, then something must be done (restriction/unrestriction/relevant printing) to give other decks a chance to compete. Competition is primordial for markets and so it is in magic albeit for different reasons.


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