Evolving New Player: On meta changes
I'm a relatively new player when it comes to vintage. My experience has led me to mistakes obviously but overtime I have grown as any new/veterin player does. I started around a year ago, I have seen the meta shift and evolve fast, at a rate I didn't expect.
The problem is I hate this meta rite now, and I expressed this to a few long time vintage players I know and they agreed this current meta is not "terriable", but it's not the best they had played. I have faith the game will evolve and get better.
Has anyone been in this situation, it's getting frustrating, what got you through it? or am I wrong that currently vintage is fine and I should play 4 mentors or spheres like everyone else?
Unless you are playing for the sake of being competitive, play a deck that you enjoy. Tune it to combat mentor and workshops. MTGO and paper are different beasts. Focus on the things that make you happy.
I can relate to your plight because I'm not a fan of either Mentor or Shops. I think the key to 'getting through it' is to take solid personal inventory RE what is important to you about playing Vintage and align it with the reality we are in. Which is more important to you, winning or playing something you like/having fun? That's not to say you can't do both, but there is a decent amount of data to suggest if winning is your key focus, some form of Mentor or Shops should be your deck choice. If you prefer to go against the grain or have a particular pet deck, play that instead, but do so with the knowledge that you are handicapping yourself on potential win percentage. Even this approach can be taken in 2 distinct ways:
- Bury your head in the sand and play what you love and don't worry about your mentor/shops matchup :) Grixis Vault-Key is my all time favorite vintage deck, and I love to play it, but I would effectively be doing this by sleeving it up
- Play something not mentor/shops, but make sure your deck has some form of plan against the 2 and try to give thema a run for their money! (again, understanding 'that plan' is likely a weaker option than just playing one of those decks). I've been working on a Deathrite Shaman 4CC list that is firmly tier 2, but I enjoy playing it and it doesn't completely fold to those 2 decks, so I've stayed happy tinkering away with the list. Would I like to win more? Absolutely, but not at the cost of playing Mentor or Shops since neither of those decks appeal to me.
A lot of time is spent on TMD arguing about the meta and B&R changes. Not a lot of time is spent saying "Well, this is the world we live it. Lets make the most out of it by maximizing what is important to us individually". This is not to say that meta/B&R discussions aren't important, but they have a time and a place. Its ok to want changes to be made to Vintage, or to have the belief that something is 'wrong' with Vintage, but that facet of Vintage (which is only a small part) doesn't have to completely consume your focus and warp your feelings about it.
personally im not a fan of the meta either, what ive done to get through it is simillar to what @JonHammack said and that is to make a deck you like with a plan against those two decks, i refuse to play mentor and shops, so ive been tinkering with a few pet decks of mine, and just tuning them to the meta game, or just playing something so out there that they dont know what to do, but i would say the best way to get through it is find the deck you most enjoy playing, and learn the deck inside and out, and you can tune it to beat mentor and shops. something else i have done is when there is a deck im trying to beat, playing a few games with the deck to see what others bring in against it and to see what the deck is weak against, i did this for legacy when omnitell was popular, i couldnt figure out how to beat the deck before but then i played it and it helped me understand their deck and how to beat it, so to wrap it up, learn your deck inside and out and tune it, and play their deck a little to learn how it plays and how to beat it, i hope this helps.
I've been playing landstill for the past year learning the ins and out of the deck. (Landstill is not in a good place rite now not only being an extremely difficult deck to play)
I wanted to change decks for a while and I finally ripped that band-aid and for the first time took apart my deck and made a mentor list from scratch.
I always loved the feeling of building a deck from crappy beginnings, learning to build the deck and evolve it overtime, taking suggestions and acquiring new tools to try.
I am excited and not disappointed changing into a new type of deck and learn a new type of playstyle. I am not frustrated anymore but it will deffinitly help me grow as a player.