Cards to unrestrict



  • @Aaron-Patten

    Aaron, I appreciate your candor, and I do agree that Workshop decks are in an unprecedented place right now. I disagree that the archetype would remain tier one without the namesake card as a 4-of. On the contrary, I believe it would fall off the face of the map and the only good "Thorn" deck would be White Eldrazi. I don't want to live in THAT format either. Rather than crowd the restricted list with iconic cards, I would like to put a petition out to Wizards of the Coast to design at set with Vintage in mind that interacts hatefully with artifacts (specifically sphere effects). Cards like By Force are a great start, but the format needs effective ways to break out of a prison lock.

    Due to players hatred for Dredge R & D gave us cards like Rest in Peace and Containment Priest (the latter was actually claimed to be due to EDH but that is neither here nor there). I see no reason why the design team couldn't put their heads together and tackle Workshops. I also would love to see alternative archetypes form around new mechanics (perhaps energy or perhaps a return to Leylines etc). I know we've been patiently waiting, and, as yet, nothing has happened, but I think it's worth waiting a bit longer.

    Also, you failed to acknowledge the one major weakness of Workshop decks that can be exploited and IS exploited to some success even now: The entire deck is artifacts! That means you can target just that ONE card type and have success. It also means Workshop decks don't have access to a large portion of the card pool in deck design. Now I know what you'll say to that: "Stormanimagus, they don't NEED access to the rest of card pool if they have ridiculousness like Walking Ballista, Fleetwheel Cruiser and 10 Spheres." I would not dispute that, but I would say that the likelihood for hateful printings in the future is far higher than the likelihood of more Workshop staples.

    Also, I think folks somewhat overstate the dominance of shops and fail to realize that there are indeed natural predators to the deck. Oath, for example, and Landstill, both often take a huge crap on Shops. Players are often just unwilling to take those decks to an event. I'm not entirely sure why either.

    Just my thoughts,

    -Storm



  • All

    Just a quick reminder. This is the "cards to unrestrict" thread.

    In order to keep this thread meaningfully distinct from the other restricted list thread, conversation here should be focused on what can be done through unrestriction.

    Metagame changes that require restriction or restriction suggestions should go in the other thread.

    Restriction discussion is a big topic and tends to crowd out other topics, so if we want to focus people's creative thinking on a sub area like unrestriction it's important we all try to keep on topic and stay narrowly focused. Thanks.



  • @walking.dude said in Cards to unrestrict:

    All

    Just a quick reminder. This is the "cards to unrestrict" thread.

    In order to keep this thread meaningfully distinct from the other restricted list thread, conversation here should be focused on what can be done through unrestriction.

    Metagame changes that require restriction or restriction suggestions should go in the other thread.

    Restriction discussion is a big topic and tends to crowd out other topics, so if we want to focus people's creative thinking on a sub area like unrestriction it's important we all try to keep on topic and stay narrowly focused. Thanks.

    but I think these two threads SHOULD be merged into one thread in that case. I think unrestrictions and restrictions are closely linked and one might very much depend on the other. I think a mission critical aspect to allowing Gush and Ponder and all the stuff I mentioned OFF the restricted list is to restrict Monastery Mentor. The two actions don't happen in vacuum in my view. I think it is an erroneous thing to even talk about the two actions separately because they often have a lot to do with each other.



  • Just want to throw another vote out there to unrestrict crop rotation. To be honest, when I wrote my initial post with a list of cards I didn't even consider crop rotation because I forgot it was restricted. Just don't see the point.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Khahan said in Cards to unrestrict:

    Just want to throw another vote out there to unrestrict crop rotation. To be honest, when I wrote my initial post with a list of cards I didn't even consider crop rotation because I forgot it was restricted. Just don't see the point.

    This seems reasonable. With Misstep still 4x in every list that isn't running 4x Wasteland, it seems hard to take advantage of. What would you grab to abuse it? Dark Depths combo? Tolarian in a deck with the new "return a card to hand" draw spell? Crucible lock people with Strip Mine?




  • TMD Supporter



  • @walking.dude said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @cutlex @khahan

    Done!

    http://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/news/june-19-2009-dci-banned-restricted-list-announcement-2009-06-19

    Ok, my memory wasn't screw then. I was just wondering why there was such discussion about it.



  • @Aaron-Patten Just a quick note about your paragraph regarding Necropotence. It's not just Force of Will that stops the turn 1 play. Mental Misstep stops it as well. Not to mention Necropotence is a lot riskier than it used to be. I actually made a post some time ago in this thread exploring the possibility of 4x Necropotence in our format. I do believe it will result in a deck that will be favoured against blue-based decks, but would ultimately still be beaten by workshops.



  • I don't Think anything should be unrestricted right Now. And if, then I Think that either bargain or necro could be allright. There are similiar effects in the format already so that could Add more resiliency to storm.

    But stay away from the cantrips! Both ponder and bs reduce variance by a too big amount.

    @Stormanimagus
    Why would people Stop playing dig and cruise with 4 Chalice? Actually the opposite would be True.



  • @Wintage said in Cards to unrestrict:

    I don't Think anything should be unrestricted right Now. And if, then I Think that either bargain or necro could be allright. There are similiar effects in the format already so that could Add more resiliency to storm.

    But stay away from the cantrips! Both ponder and bs reduce variance by a too big amount.

    @Stormanimagus
    Why would people Stop pla.ying dig and cruise with 4 Chalice? Actually the opposite would be True.

    Because the cards that fuel it (i.e Preordain) would be hurt by Chalice @1.



  • @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @JACO said in Cards to unrestrict:

    Anybody who wants to unrestrict Flash, I will offer to play you for $10/game at Eternal Weekend this year if I get to play 4 copies of Flash vs. your current deck. You will regret it. The deck should not be using the kill conditions mentioned above. It should be based on the article I wrote last year, with Show and Tell. You do not rely on the graveyard, but utilize it better than anyone else. Serenity + Hurkyl's Recall makes the Workshop matchup a joke.

    Having access to both Omniscience and Bargain totally changes the calculus as compared to previous iterations of Flash. Giving the best color an even faster (effective) game ending 2 mana spell at instant speed is a very, very poor idea. I'm not sure how unrestricting Flash does anything to change the power and effectiveness of unrestricted Mentor decks (and the corresponding metagame), which have 4 copies of arguably the best kill condition ever printed.

    This article: http://www.eternalcentral.com/giftsweek-gifts-rector-omniscience/ ?

    What is nice about the deck, as you say, is that it doesn't rely on the graveyard, because you can just use Show and Tell. But it certainly wants to be able to use it's graveyard. Rector can't trigger with Leyline in play, nor can you flashback Therapy. Gifts/Will is pretty awkward as wlel.

    This deck is definitely more difficult to hate out then the Flash decks I was brewing above, but it's also definitely alot less consistent in terms of being able to assemble the Flash combo. With Leyline in play, all you have to do is counter Show and Tell and your deck is largely dead in the water.

    It's probably just as viable to do what Dredge often does, and bounce the hate rather than try to play around it like you do.

    I'm not saying this isn't a good deck, I just don't think it would be dominant. Vintage has so many tools for combating these types of decks these days.

    I said you would start with the deck shell in the aforementioned article, not use it as printed. You would want to dramatically lower the mana curve, and will not play 4 Gifts (1-2 will suffice at that point when you have 4 copies of Flash), because Gifts is more of a game-ender in that scenario. The consistency and power with 4 Flash and 3-4 Show and Tell is much more powerful than any combo deck we're currently seeing in Vintage at the moment. That is not a good thing, contrary to the claim that the format can/should be sped up by a turn (which I think is a poor idea also).

    I'm not sure how unrestricting Flash does anything to change the power and effectiveness of unrestricted Mentor decks (and the corresponding metagame),

    The idea of unrestricting Flash is an alternative way to deal with a metagame that is strangled by Shops/Mentor. It doesn't do anything about Mentor directly, except create a deck that could compete with it. Unrestricting Flash either creates new decks or strengthens an existing, marginal strategy. I don't think anyone can dispute that from a purely logical perspective. The issue isn't whether unrestricting Flash would do that, the question is whether the costs of having that kind of deck outweigh the benefits.

    I understand this sentiment, and don't think giving the format a more busted combo deck is a great solution. People are doing well enough with Outcome and Gifts decks, and frankly are still in the beginning stages of innovating and adjusting those to compete with Mentor and 9Sphere.dec Workshop variants. The point of my comment is that Mentor is likely the best kill condition in Vintage, by a long shot, and simply adding an unfun and busted combo deck to the format isn't going to do anything to cure the ills of Vintage, and bring back people in to the fold who are sick of it at the moment. The card Mentor itself has done far more to push out other decks and strategies than any perceived damage that Gush or Gitaxian Probe ever did.


  • TMD Supporter

    @JACO said in Cards to unrestrict:

    I'm not saying this isn't a good deck, I just don't think it would be dominant. Vintage has so many tools for combating these types of decks these days.

    I said you would start with the deck shell in the aforementioned article, not use it as printed. You would want to dramatically lower the mana curve, and will not play 4 Gifts (1-2 will suffice at that point when you have 4 copies of Flash), because Gifts is more of a game-ender in that scenario. The consistency and power with 4 Flash and 3-4 Show and Tell is much more powerful than any combo deck we're currently seeing in Vintage at the moment.

    But if Show and Tell were really that good, it would see more play than it currently does.

    And, I don't think that combining Flash and Show and Tell generates some untapped synergy that really makes it significantly better than either a Show and Tell deck or a Flash deck is individually. There may be some synergy there (in weakening specific hate, much like DD/Dredge combo), but there are costs as well. The Flash deck I posted earlier is significantly more consistent and faster than your deck is with Flash/Rector. And you lose insane cards like Pacts.

    I'm not sure how unrestricting Flash does anything to change the power and effectiveness of unrestricted Mentor decks (and the corresponding metagame),

    The idea of unrestricting Flash is an alternative way to deal with a metagame that is strangled by Shops/Mentor. It doesn't do anything about Mentor directly, except create a deck that could compete with it. Unrestricting Flash either creates new decks or strengthens an existing, marginal strategy. I don't think anyone can dispute that from a purely logical perspective. The issue isn't whether unrestricting Flash would do that, the question is whether the costs of having that kind of deck outweigh the benefits.

    I understand this sentiment, and don't think giving the format a more busted combo deck is a great solution.

    As I said, I think the issue is whether the costs of having a Flash deck outweigh the benefits of another angle in the format. Reasonable people can disagree on that.

    Some people might reasonably argue that having another angle of attack in the format would increase the diversity of the format at not much cost.

    And others would emphasize, as you do, the games that are spoiled by having a silly combo go off.

    Where people fall on that line depend on their tolerance for combos and a slight increase in Turn 1-3 kills, and the % or frequency of games "spoiled" or "unfun" as a result.

    But what I don't think is fair or reasonable is some claim that the deck you outlined above would be some kind of unbeatable format killer. That, I doubt. In fact, were Flash unrestricted, I'd be shocked if your deck, or some variant of it, were more than 15% of Top 8s six months later.

    People are doing well enough with Outcome and Gifts decks, and frankly are still in the beginning stages of innovating and adjusting those to compete with Mentor and 9Sphere.dec Workshop variants.

    Eh, I don't think that some new "innovation" or brew is going to change the fundamental structure of this format at this point. It's been 3 months since the restrictions, and Magic metagames, especially on MTGO, are capable of changing overnight. If something in the format was going to fundamentally change - if a Gifts deck, for example, was really going to break out, I think it would have done so by now.

    There is virtually no precedent for tier 1 breakout decks in Vintage 3 months after a restriction that is not more a result of a new printing.

    If PO/Thirst/Gifts decks start rising up, the Mentor/Shops decks will just pack more Stony Silence/Null Rod and other cards like that, and they'll drop back down again, much like more Dredge leads to more GY hate.

    I don't think we are in the 'beginning' stages of any adjustments. I rather think we are at the tail end of a period of adjustment, and the format is pretty settled at this point, except for any adjustments Hour of Devastation may contribute.

    The point of my comment is that Mentor is likely the best kill condition in Vintage, by a long shot, and simply adding an unfun and busted combo deck to the format isn't going to do anything to cure the ills of Vintage, and bring back people in to the fold who are sick of it at the moment. The card Mentor itself has done far more to push out other decks and strategies than any perceived damage that Gush or Gitaxian Probe ever did.

    I agree with that last part, of course, but the argument for unrestricting Flash, which I'm not entirely persuaded off, looks beyond the eventual restriction of Mentor. You're getting too focused on Mentor.

    Once Mentor is restricted, it's likely, based upon our currently trajectory, that we'll see more restrictions as a result of this path. The idea of unrestricting Flash, or, more plausibly, Windfall/Bargain, is to try to boost marginal strategies to try to compete with dominant decks rather than continue on this current cycle of endless restrictions triggered by prior, unnecessary restrictions.

    The reason that Gush shouldn't have been restricted is that it wasn't necessary; Mentor was the problem, not Gush. And the main argument that restricting Gush was not some harmless event, even if it was wrong, is that it makes other restrictions more likely, not less. So, after Mentor is restricted, without Gush there to keep PO decks in check, it's more likely that PO will get restricted, and on beyond that. If Gush hadn't been restricted, I think Gush and PO would have existed in a decent equilibrium, much like the February P9 challenge metagame.

    If I'm right, that restricting Gush triggers multiple future restrictions that may not have been necessary, then one possible alternative route is unrestrictions to create metagame balance and more diversity, not restrictions. Once Mentor is restricted, this is going to be a debate that will need to be had. I'm simply projecting beyond that point, and trying to address it proactively.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    If PO/Thirst/Gifts decks start rising up, the Mentor/Shops decks will just pack more Stony Silence/Null Rod and other cards like that, and they'll drop back down again, much like more Dredge leads to more GY hate.

    First of all, PO and TfK are pretty awful cards. They definitely aren't deserving of being lumped into with Gifts Ungiven. Second, Stony Silence doesn't do enough on its own. I only play 7 artifact mana sources. Baral is the primary mana engine now; it helps to easily and consistently dismantle Shop decks. From Jeskai Mentors perspective, your best bet against Gifts is to side out JVP and Delve spells for Rest In Peace to eliminate the quick and easy Gifts kill. And Shops just flat out doesn't stand a chance.



  • @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    First of all, PO and TfK are pretty awful cards.

    Well, you are certainly entitled to your opinion...


  • TMD Supporter

    @ChubbyRain said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    First of all, PO and TfK are pretty awful cards.

    Well, you are certainly entitled to your opinion...

    Sorry Matt, I know you've been playing Thirsts. But Why would they be lumped together with Gifts? That doesn't make sense. Two complete opposite sides of the spectrum. One is artifact based generic draw. And the other is graveyard based Tutor. And then the way of dealing with this decks is the same as Dredge? Insane

    If Gifts actually folded to Stony Silence, then why wouldn't I just be playing Outcome? 7. Artifacts.



  • @desolutionist Steve has his narrative. If he believes that Gifts and Thirst decks can be crushed simply by running a couple of Stony Silences or other hate in the SB of Mentor, it allows him to maintain that the format continues to be dominated by two decks and that the Gush restriction didn't accomplish anything.

    He's wrong. A well-designed and well-piloted Outcome deck can easily beat Stony Silence. But he didn't listen to me before in chat and I doubt he'll start listening to me now.

    Keep up the good work with Gifts, Shawn. Only time and repeat performances will prove people wrong.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    If PO/Thirst/Gifts decks start rising up, the Mentor/Shops decks will just pack more Stony Silence/Null Rod and other cards like that, and they'll drop back down again, much like more Dredge leads to more GY hate.

    First of all, PO and TfK are pretty awful cards. They definitely aren't deserving of being lumped into with Gifts Ungiven. Second, Stony Silence doesn't do enough on its own. I only play 7 artifact mana sources.

    You ignored the other part of the sentence, which said "and other cards like that."

    Specifically, in the case of combating Gifts decks, Grafdigger's Cage is a custom made hoser.

    It's the single best anti-Gifts card ever printed, possibly. Since it stops Recoup effects like Snapcaster/JVP, and Tinker/Will simultaneously. If Gifts starts doing very well, you're going to be facing Cage much more often.

    @ChubbyRain said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @desolutionist Steve has his narrative. If he believes that Gifts and Thirst decks can be crushed simply by running a couple of Stony Silences or other hate in the SB of Mentor, it allows him to maintain that the format continues to be dominated by two decks and that the Gush restriction didn't accomplish anything.

    He's wrong. A well-designed and well-piloted Outcome deck can easily beat Stony Silence. But he didn't listen to me before in chat and I doubt he'll start listening to me now.

    Because that's a complete misrepresentation of what I said. I never once said that Stony Silence "simply crushes" PO/Thirst decks.

    What I actually said in chat is that the matchup of PO/Thirst decks against Stony/Null Rod was "far from hopeless. It's just fighting against crosswinds or uphill battle/ pick your metaphor."

    In other words, PO/Thirst decks can defeat Stony Silence decks, it's just an uphill battle.

    There is a huge difference between these three sentences:

    1. Outcomes decks can easily beat Stony Silence

    2. Outcomes decks have an uphill battle against Stony Silence

    3. And Outcome decks get crushed by Stony Silence.

    You assert (1), but you claimed I asserted (3). My actual position is (2).

    In any case, there is more evidence for (3) than there is (1). The most recent Vintage Challenge results has PO with a 20% win percentage against Mentor (with a very small sample size).

    And, perhaps most importantly, despite many of the best players in the field playing PO/Thirst in these challenges and the NYSE, these decks penetration into the top 8 is very poor relative to the skill level and representation in the field. I mean, consider the fact of how good the Drain Tendrils pilots are, and the fact that zero percent of them made Top 8 at the NYSE, while all three of the Jeskai Mentor decks played Stony Silence. The only PO deck that made top 8 was one that, according to the pilot, was built from the list I played at Vintage Champs last year. But zero of the PO/Thirst decks made top 8, despite the firepower their pilots brought into the room.

    I'm not trying to dissuade anyone from playing whatever they want, but PO decks are going to perform even worse than their already subpar performance at EW, since EW will have a much greater than usual representation of Null Rod.

    Keep up the good work with Gifts, Shawn. Only time and repeat performances will prove people wrong.

    I'm not saying that Gifts can't do well, nor that PO/Thirst can't do well. I'm just saying that if those decks start to do better, the metagame will pack more hate for them, like Cage and more Null Rod effects, making them weaker again.

    No matter how well you design or plan for these tactics, they undermine your deck's strengths.

    Right now, the fact that very few people actually play Gifts is a big advantage for Shawn. I hope Shawn continues to do well, since he seems to enjoy playing Gifts, and I like Gifts as a card. But let's not kid ourselves. It's extremely unlikely that Gifts will become a sustained, tier 1 choice in Vintage over a long period of time without changes to the Banned and Restricted list or new printings. I'm open to being proven wrong, but does anyone really disagree? Do you really think we are going to see Vintage metagames with 20% Gifts decks and 60% win rate over multiple months in this reality anytime this year? I'll take a reasonable wager from anyone who would like to bet against me on that. Just PM me.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    If PO/Thirst/Gifts decks start rising up, the Mentor/Shops decks will just pack more Stony Silence/Null Rod and other cards like that, and they'll drop back down again, much like more Dredge leads to more GY hate.

    First of all, PO and TfK are pretty awful cards. They definitely aren't deserving of being lumped into with Gifts Ungiven. Second, Stony Silence doesn't do enough on its own. I only play 7 artifact mana sources.

    You ignored the other part of the sentence, which said "and other cards like that."

    Specifically, in the case of combating Gifts decks, Grafdigger's Cage is a custom made hoser.

    It's the single best anti-Gifts card ever printed, possibly. Since it stops Recoup effects like Snapcaster/JVP, and Tinker/Will simultaneously. If Gifts starts doing very well, you're going to be facing Cage much more often.

    Thanks for the response, Steve!

    Grafdiggers is good at shutting down Tinker and flashback effects, true, but it doesn't shut down Gifts Ungiven or Baral Chief of Compliance. The flashback effects bring about quick and easy wins, though it's still possible to navigate to lethal without the graveyard and to use Gifts Ungiven as a spell that grants free spells, mana, card draw, or counterspells.

    What deck would play Grafdiffer's Cage?

    Obviously it doesn't help Shops or Outcome since I bring in more than enough artifact hate already. So you must be talking about Mentor. By bringing in Cage, you're turning off your flashback spells as well; Mentor usually plays only 1 less flashback spell than most of the Gifts list I've played, so that's basically an even exchange; we're both hurt equally, maybe the Gifts deck a little more depending on the hands. The other thing to consider is that Gifts is siding out Tinker\BSC against a Dack/Plow deck. In its place I had been playing Subterranean Tremors but have recently switched to Empty the Warrens. In combination with the other cards that I bring in against Mentor (Leovold, Necropotence), there's a chance that Cage is meaningless.

    One more aspect to Gifts that helps its immunity to any single "hate card", is that it is a control deck first, combo deck second. The tutoring power of Gifts Ungiven allows you to devote a very small portion of the deck to actually combo pieces, since you can bring them all up at once with just one card (Gifts Ungiven). This allows for more cards that interact with the opponent and less dead draws to make advantages as you're jockeying for position to cast a Gifts and win. Mental Misstep, Force of Will, Mana Drain, and cards like that make up the Gifts decks frontline defense.

    Last but not least, this deck isn't dredge. It's flexible and attacks from more than one angle. If more Mentor players start bringing in Cage against me, I can adjust my sideboard plan accordingly and either take advantage of their tactic or counter it.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    Last but not least, this deck isn't dredge. It's flexible and attacks from more than one angle. If more Mentor players start bringing in Cage against me, I can adjust my sideboard plan accordingly and either take advantage of their tactic or counter it.

    Firstly, Dredge doesn't just attack from one angle. The DD/ Dredge decks attack from two or more different angles.

    Second, there is a kind of circular quality to these back-and-forths.

    I say: Card X creates difficulty for your deck.

    You (not you Shawn, but whomever I'm talking to) say: But my deck can defeat Card X. All I have to do is A, B, and C.

    I say: Yes, I realize you can do all of that. It sounds like a decent plan, and it mitigates the damage that card X does to you. But it's still not ideal for you. You would be better off if players didn't use card X against you.

    And you say: But I can still defeat players who use Card X.

    And, I say: I never said you couldn't. Just pointing out that it takes away some of your natural advantages/strengths...

    And so on, and on ad infinitum.

    No Dredge decks wants to face gaveyard hate. No combo deck using lots of free spells wants to face Sphere effects. No Paradoxical Outcome deck wants to face Null Rod effects. No Workshop decks wants to face artifact hosers. And no Gifts deck wants to face Grafdigger's Cage.

    Does that mean those decks can't beat those tactics? Of course not. There is rarely such a thing as a complete silver bullet in Magic. Going back as far as when White Weenie was able to Disenchant Moat, there is rarely a card that can't be overcome. Dredge can beat Rest in Peace. Workshops can beat Energy Flux. PO can beat Null Rod. And Gifts & Oath can beat G. Cage.

    But dealing with those tactics often means unusual distortions or suboptimizing the deck in other matchups. A Dredge deck that plans for GY hate by stuffing 10 bounce spells maindeck is less consistent. That same principle applies to any deck facing any match in Magic.

    If you go some strange or unusual plan to deal with the threat, that doesn't render the threat meaningless. It's very presence has fundamentally changed your deck's game plan and/or eaten up SB space, potentially making other matchups dicier.

    I undersatnd that people get very defensive/touchy whenever anyone points out that there are strong tactics against their preferred strategy, and that might make it difficult to understand what I'm saying in non-hyperbolic terms, but I'm not saying your deck, whatever that might be, sucks and can't win games.


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