Cards to unrestrict



  • @Smmenen

    You have without a doubt the worst reading comprehension of any adult Ive ever encountered. Your consistent ability to miss a persons point while focusing on some minute detail of their post is baffling. Your constant desire to always be "right" in what others are viewing as a casual discussion blinds you to what is really happening. This thread us now 20+ posts deep of you just arguing some semantical bs with me while belittling everything I say.

    You seem to get in these arguements every time there is a theorectical discussion happening. You are a complete and total cancer to this format and this board.

    Is that clear enough for you?


  • TMD Supporter

    I apologize if you've taken anything I said personally. I have tried to limit my criticisms to the thoughts you've expressed or your manner & mode of expression.

    Your sloppy presentation style and fairly lackadaisical posting style makes it difficult to understand your ideas with precision, and when pressed or challenged, you wriggle out of what you've already (seemingly) said.

    The entire debate over what you mean by "consistent" is a pretty absurd example of this.

    Anyone reading your statement that "A deck that can consistently go off on turn 1 is not good for the format" would interpret it largely the way I did. Which is to mean a deck that can regularly go off on Turn 1. Then, you later explain you meant "more consistently" than before. Which could mean almost nothing if the baseline is like 2%.

    That's exactly why I did not want to engage you substantively on the issue until I precisely understood what you meant. I wasn't ignoring your questions, I was trying to make sure I carefully understood your views first.

    But this is another good example of what I mean when I criticized you for sloppy construction/thinking:

    More than any other format, we should be wary of cards that are pushing us towards these games where one player literally does not get to play a single card from their hand.

    I mean, every single reason I can think of would suggest that this should be LESS true of Vintage than any other format, as I noted in post 31.

    To get the thread on track, my position is that this a slow enough format that it can afford to be sped up very slightly, closer to historical norms, in order to increase strategic diversity.

    To do that, I'd start by unrestricting Bargain and/or Windfall, and seriously consider unrestricting Flash.

    If I had to further parse those unrestricions, I'd say that unrestricting Flash probably gives you the highest probability of creating a new archetype that can crack the 5% barrier.



  • I'd be curious to see what unrestricted Necropotence could do in our current format. Naturally Turn 1 Ritual+Necro is very hard to beat, but it requires 2 cards and earlier you needed to have a Force to beat it. Now you can have either Misstep or Force. The later the game goes on, the worse it gets too, especially with the current format being very unforgiving on life totals.

    Of course, I'm going to have people jump on this post and call me insane, or say that they cannot take me seriously anymore, or worse.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Hrishi said in Cards to unrestrict:

    I'd be curious to see what unrestricted Necropotence could do in our current format. Naturally Turn 1 Ritual+Necro is very hard to beat, but it requires 2 cards and earlier you needed to have a Force to beat it. Now you can have either Misstep or Force. The later the game goes on, the worse it gets too, especially with the current format being very unforgiving on life totals.

    Of course, I'm going to have people jump on this post and call me insane, or say that they cannot take me seriously anymore, or worse.

    I'm not an advocate for unrestricting Necropotence, but it is an interesting thought experiment.

    You are right to point out that just unrestricting Necro doesn't make it a reliable play. After all, Misstep is ubiquitous, and waiting to prevent early Necro from being cast. In addition, cards like Spell Pierce and Flusterstorm can also stop Ritual off just one land, and Spell Pierce can counter Necro directly.

    Necropotence is especially risky against Shops now that Ballista exists. Revoker can name Necopotence proactively or reactively. Spheres will slow any combo player down. And Ballista + Revoker can take a huge chunk of life as the Necro player searches for mana and a Hurkyl's or other answers.

    The one clear area where I think Necro would be very strong is against Mentor or other blue decks. I have a difficult time imagining that Mentor or other control decks would be favored there.

    Although, I think we'd see alot more proactive Pithing Needles coming out of blue sideboards, and more maindeck Spell Pierces. So who knows? Maybe things would actually balance out?

    But my best guess is that a 4 Necro deck would have good matchups against Blue decks, but weak matchups against Dredge and Shops.

    It sound crazy, but maybe it's not insane.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen

    What do you think about Imperial Seal?

    And if you go down the rabbit hole of unrestricting Imperial Seal, can you also unrestrict Vampiric and Mystical Tutor?

    My thought is that Imperial Seal doesn't see play and I don't think it's because you cannot play 4. If you were to unrestrict all the topdeck tutors, how many would you really want to play?



  • @Smmenen said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Hrishi said in Cards to unrestrict:

    I'd be curious to see what unrestricted Necropotence could do in our current format. Naturally Turn 1 Ritual+Necro is very hard to beat, but it requires 2 cards and earlier you needed to have a Force to beat it. Now you can have either Misstep or Force. The later the game goes on, the worse it gets too, especially with the current format being very unforgiving on life totals.

    Of course, I'm going to have people jump on this post and call me insane, or say that they cannot take me seriously anymore, or worse.

    I'm not an advocate for unrestricting Necropotence, but it is an interesting thought experiment.

    You are right to point out that just unrestricting Necro doesn't make it a reliable play. After all, Misstep is ubiquitous, and waiting to prevent early Necro from being cast. In addition, cards like Spell Pierce and Flusterstorm can also stop Ritual off just one land, and Spell Pierce can counter Necro directly.

    Necropotence is especially risky against Shops now that Ballista exists. Revoker can name Necopotence proactively or reactively. Spheres will slow any combo player down. And Ballista + Revoker can take a huge chunk of life as the Necro player searches for mana and a Hurkyl's or other answers.

    The one clear area where I think Necro would be very strong is against Mentor or other blue decks. I have a difficult time imagining that Mentor or other control decks would be favored there.

    Although, I think we'd see alot more proactive Pithing Needles coming out of blue sideboards, and more maindeck Spell Pierces. So who knows? Maybe things would actually balance out?

    But my best guess is that a 4 Necro deck would have good matchups against Blue decks, but weak matchups against Dredge and Shops.

    It sound crazy, but maybe it's not insane.

    Thanks for unpacking it clearer than I did. I agree with your post entirely and it's this thought experiment that made me wonder what a 4 Necropotence deck could do in the current format.

    Would we see Unmask being played in a 4 Necro deck as a way to clear the way? Maybe this one is reaching but going Unmask -> Ritual -> Necro doesn't seem like an awful play.

    As you pointed out, turn 1 Necro can be incredibly risky against Shops. I've had games where I've gone Ritual Necro blind and then ended up losing that game 1 because I could not find my bounce spell in time.

    Maybe this is a dangerous unrestriction, but I think it's an exciting one. I might be biased here, of course, but in general I favour exciting unrestrictions over "well they finally unrestricted this card and it does nothing".



  • @Smmenen I'm not terribly convinced that Flash would have a good matchup against Workshops if it were unrestricted. Phyrexian Revoker and Walking Ballista are both creatures that were not printed before Flash was restricted and both of them can stop the Reveillark kill. I have a hard time imagining that Disciple of the Vault is good enough to avoid this weakness (too much deck space), but maybe? Is there perhaps other viable Flash kills enabled by newer printings that haven't been explored?


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Smmenen

    What do you think about Imperial Seal?

    And if you go down the rabbit hole of unrestricting Imperial Seal, can you also unrestrict Vampiric and Mystical Tutor?

    My thought is that Imperial Seal doesn't see play and I don't think it's because you cannot play 4. If you were to unrestrict all the topdeck tutors, how many would you really want to play?

    Those are good questions, that have complicated answers I can't begin to fully unpack here.

    I will say, however that two key variables are whether Probe stays restricted and whether Misstep is eventually restricted. The topdeck tutors are much more dangerous if Probe is unrestricted, but less dangerous if Misstep is unrestricted.

    The upkeep Vamp play is sufficiently insane that I don't think it can ever be safely unrestricted.

    @DeaTh-ShiNoBi said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Smmenen I'm not terribly convinced that Flash would have a good matchup against Workshops if it were unrestricted. Phyrexian Revoker and Walking Ballista are both creatures that were not printed before Flash was restricted and both of them can stop the Reveillark kill. I have a hard time imagining that Disciple of the Vault is good enough to avoid this weakness (too much deck space), but maybe? Is there perhaps other viable Flash kills enabled by newer printings that haven't been explored?

    Yeah - I should have been more explicit about this earlier, but I think we'd have more Rector Flash or other novel/different combos than we had in the past in addition to the ones used in the past. Since no one has really worked on Flash since the banning/restriction, there is a good chance that superior kills exist than were used in 2008. And certainly ways to overcome the normal obstacles in the format.

    And, if your suspicions are right that Flash would have a bad Shop matchup, then all the more reason that Flash shouldn't be restricted at all.



  • @Smmenen You might be right about Rector Flash being more suitable to the current format than classic Hulk Flash. Grafdigger's Cage and Walking Ballista don't have anything to say about Rector. However, Bargain would still be vulnerable to Revoker.


  • TMD Supporter

    @DeaTh-ShiNoBi said in Cards to unrestrict:

    @Smmenen You might be right about Rector Flash being more suitable to the current format than classic Hulk Flash. Grafdigger's Cage and Walking Ballista don't have anything to say about Rector. However, Bargain would still be vulnerable to Revoker.

    Agreed. I left this implicit, too, but there are ways to deal with that tactically as well. If Revoker is down proactively, and names Bargain, maybe you Rector for Necro, or Form of the Dragon, or something else, like Future Sight, that is optimal in that moment. I think Jaco or someone thereabouts had a 1 Flash Rector deck they played not terribly long ago. We might look at that, or the 2008 Flash Rector decks, to get a better sense of how they were built. This guy, from 2007, even had a Null Profusion!

    Chapin even suggested, at one point, 4 Phryrexian Dreadnaught and a Bob! He was most fond, however, of the Sliver kill.

    This conversation is reminding me how much worse Flash is with Brainstorm restricted. You really want a lot of these cards in your deck.

    But, as you suggested, there may be new kills that are in the card pool since 2008 that can be used with Protean Hulk that aren't vulnerable to Ballista/Revoker. That's a good question!



  • A lot of focus is being placed on the speed vs interaction axis. So I think it's worth thinking about that.

    I think there is common agreement that people don't like being killed on turn one. It's not fun gameplay, and subjectively it doesn't feel "fair".

    It also makes a big difference in how games play out strategically. Playing combo some hands are faster and some are more resilient. Often you will mull to look for a hand that doesn't fold to a single piece of disruption and you will make deck building concessions to that end as well. If your opponent gets even one turn, they can hold up a one mana counter, or cast discard, or play a lock piece. So if you won't kill on turn one, your deck and your hand need to be able to play through disruption. So a deck with an un disrupted turn 2 clock is really a 2.5-3 turn clock at the fastest because it has to fight.

    A deck with a turn one clock actualy kills on turn one. The old 4 LED long deck really did kill on turn one a lot of the time. If you scouted your opponents as not being on force, you could probably turn 1 them 60%+.

    I think when unrestriction discussion is considered, it's very important to differentiate between cards that could boost combo in general and cards that boost turn one combo. The two play out very differentently.



  • The above dynamic is why I think cards like channel and balance would be very bad choices to unrestrict.

    It's easy to get 2 mana on turn 1 without making major sacrifices. Getting 3 mana reliably on turn one is harder and requires playing some sub par choices (e.g. Lotus petal).

    I think this is why flash is a potentially poor candidate. If the deck isn't good it does nothing. But if the deck is good enough, then you've added a potential turn one deck, because land mox flash is easy.

    I think this is also why windfall is scary to me. I played academy, and spent a lot of time tuning neo academy (never played live because I couldn't get it to reliably beat keeper), and played long. The draw sevens are so strong and let you get away with playing temporary mana to reach 3 on turn one. The windfall deck if it works doesn't look like tps or dps it looks like a weaker long deck. The windfall deck if its good enouph is a turn one deck at least 20% of the time.

    That's why I think it makes sense to focus on cards that are powerful but a bit slower. Tutors make combo more consistent. They speed up the average kill, but they don't speed up the fastest kills, because the fastest kills involve naturally drawing the pieces and not wasting mana and cards on tutors. Tutors are where I would look if you wanted to raise average speed without the drawbacks of raising max speed



  • People are talking about speed and turn 1 kills which brings me back to brainstorm. If quick-kill combo decks are more enabled I think the only way to really counter them is to move blue control back to the old instant-speed style. Think of a quick combo deck today that can get turn 1 kills. You win the die-roll and have force back up, you pretty much win. You lose the die roll, watch your U opponent go land, off color mox, preordain - again you pretty much win.
    But if your opponent is going mox, land pass that makes you pause and consider force of will/fluster or force/pyroblast. You are now playing around 2 counters instead of 1.

    Having access to instant speed card filtering changes how blue mages play out their first turn. Which, in a control match up can fundamentally change how your opponent plays. I think it actually slows gameplay down in that sense as players are more careful about playing around spells like pyro, flusterstorm, force etc.



  • There are a lot of people on TheManaDrain who I feel argue with @Smmenen just to argue and squawk.



  • Unrestricted Necro would be interesting but ultimately problematic should Misstep be restricted. Force of will and spell pierce are the only playable counter's that can reliably stop this on turn 1, and (as was pointed out earlier) unmask would be a house in that deck, on top of thoughtseize and duress.


  • TMD Supporter

    Let's actually build the Flash deck.

    Here's a stab:

    The combo:
    4 Flash
    4 Protean Hulk
    1 Reveillark
    1 Body Double
    1 Carrion Feeder
    1 Mogg Fanatic
    1 Body Snatcher

    Restricted Cards:
    1 Merchant Scroll
    1 Ponder
    1 Ancestral Recall
    1 Time Walk
    1 Mystical Tutor
    1 Vampiric Tutor
    1 Gitaxian Probe
    1 Demonic Tutor
    1 Brainstorm
    1 Treasure Cruise
    1 Dig Through Time

    Countermagic:
    4 Force of Will
    4 Mental Misstep
    4 Pact of Negation

    Bounce:
    1 Chain of Vapor

    Other:
    2 Summoner's Pact

    1 Other card - maybe Preordain? Or Misdirection?

    20 Mana:

    13 Lands
    5 Moxen
    Lotus
    Lotus Petal

    One key weakness is that if you've drawn Flash combo cards, you'll need to put them back into your deck. Maybe the last card needs to be See Beyond.

    So, one question is whether this is better than Rector Flash? And, another question is whether a deck like this is actually that good in an era of Sudden Shock, etc. This combo could be easily broken up by all kinds of hate.


  • TMD Supporter

    I'm not sure that you can afford to run 2 Delve spells without 4x Preordain and/or Dack Fayden. You just won't fill your graveyard fast enough.

    I think you should slot in at least one Snapcaster Mage, too, because it's just too good with Flash after your first one gets countered.



  • @Smmenen

    Creature suite for combo should consider
    Karmic guide
    V seer
    Mikesus the unhallowed
    Walking ballista

    I think that's one fewer pieces needed to combo, and it's a bit more resilient to spot removal, and ballista is a playable card in its own right.

    All that said, I think I like rector lists better. Being able to play therapy along with flash for more redundant ways to kill it, and being able to cast it in pinch would be worth a lot.

    Old school rector decks back in the early 2000s (maybe circa 2003) did better against shops than you would expect on the strength of just powering out a quick rector and just brick walking (though that was obviously stronger against the smokestack builds of yesteryear).



  • What sort of targets would be wanted for Rector? Bargain/Necro seems obvious, and Steve mentioned Future Sight before, but what about something like Omniscience? While it's not as sure a win as Bargain can be it seems like will get you there with minimal support and at least will pitch to Force if stuck in your hand, as if you get the Bargain after it lets you play it for free.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Hydra

    Form of the Dragon...


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