A Game Balance Suggestion

  • I have a process improvement for magic the gathering. Instead of have many cards restricted to 1 copy, why not have three levels of restriction? Three restricted (only 3 in main deck + sideboard), two restricted, and 1 restricted would benefit the game significantly.

  • A perfect example can be seen in the 2015 vintage championships. In 2014 and 2015 oath won. The oath deck has a good matchup for a significant percentage of the meta. Namely workshop, dredge, delver, and others. In a decent match, it is likely that the oath player has two oath and a force of will in the opening hand. You must have two force of wills to prevent the first oath, and therefore probably no gas for the second oath. Oath is a bit imbalanced because it is very consistent and way too fast. However, if we 3 restrict oath of druids, it would be more balanced.

  • TMD Supporter

    @caleb said:

    I have a process improvement for magic the gathering. Instead of have many cards restricted to 1 copy, why not have three levels of restriction? Three restricted (only 3 in main deck + sideboard), two restricted, and 1 restricted would benefit the game significantly.

    Some Old School Magic formats do this, and permit some cards as 2-ofs, like Fastbond or Necropotence.

  • This would make building a legacy Vintage deck very difficult. There would be a lot to keep track of. While this suggestion might help game balance, it takes us down a very slippery slope with lots of cards allowed at different levels. I think that, for our own sanity, we should stick with the three states we have now (0, 1, 4).

  • Wizards has made many attempts to simplify the game over the years to keep it attractive to younger players. Stacking Damage, Mana Burn and others have had (IMO) a positive impact in this regard. Other attempts have been less successful, like the recent changes to Flip Card Converted Mana Cost. Instituting a semi-restricted list, I fear, would just make things more complicated, especially in the 3-2-1-0 tiers suggested. Perhaps a straight, restricted (1) semi-restricted (2) and banned (0) could be feasible, but its highly unlikely. I would not mind Lodestone, Balance, or Channel as 2-of's, though I am sure others would disagree.

  • I think this is not a great idea. Imagine how complicated the restriction decisions would have been on the Wizards' part. And unrestrictions would be even worse. For example, we can easily imagine a card that most people would think 4 of is too many. So what about 3? 2? There would certainly be people saying 2 is best, others would say 3. How do you make an argument in this discussion? The math is quite complicated and the difference is not as obvious as between 1 and 4, so I bet most of the arguments would be based on a feeling or be just opinions on the matter. This would mean somebody has to do some very serious research (in the case of vintage probably infeasible due to small sample size) or there would be even more disparity in the community (regarding restrictions) than it already is today (not going to mention LSG here).

    So basically, as The Atog Lord says, for the sake of our own sanity we shouldn't complicate the existing system too much.

    PS: It is kinda like predicting weather (among other things). You can most of the time, with some effort, guess if next day will be hot or cold, but nailing the precise temperature is very hard. The finer-grained you want your decision to be, the more likely you are going to make a mistake. And if you don't have enough data, you are just guessing.

    PS2: This is my first post on TMD, so: hello everyone! I was lurking for quite some time, but this topic caught my attention enough to warrant a response.

  • How many cards on the restricted list currently could really even be placed on a semi-restricted list and actually improve the format? I can't imagine a single one having much of any positive impact at all. You can't build around a card if its only a 2-of and probably not even if its only a 3-of. Then cards that don't need to be built around, and are still being played would just homogenize the format more if moved onto a semi-restricted list.

    If this is just to talk about Oath, I'd honestly be fine with Oath being straight up restricted. Although containment priest has kept it more in check than in the past.

  • I could make a deck that revolved around 2 fastbond, 2 channel, or 2 yawgmoths will pretty easily. I mean there are already plenty that revolve around the singleton. I currently like it as is, either restricted or a 4 of, but I think there are quite a few cards that need unrestricted, but that's for another thread and another day.

  • With the amount of tutors available there isn't allot of leeway. Are there any restricted cards that aren't run in decks with tutors? Something for aggro / tempo like hate bears or menfolk?

    My though is power can be balanced by variance. If you could increase the power of the low variance decks only it could good.

  • With this change there are more opportunities. How do we reduce the power of oath and say belcher without restriction 3? Most things will still stay restriction one.

  • TMD Supporter


    You can reduce the power of Oath, and say Belcher by playing Leyline of Sanctity. How does either deck do anything against that?

  • @desolutionist

    Gotta load up on combo hate

  • I'm not all that certain that I agree with the premise that oath and belcher are in need of lowering their power level.

  • TMD Supporter

    yeah, the erroneous premise is that decks with more restricted cards are more broken. Yet, actually, some of the best decks have the fewest restricted cards (like Workshop decks). The average Dredge deck has zero restricted cards lol.

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