Just gotta love Brian Kelly's deck!! I think Brian's a great ambassador for vintage magic since he shows everyone how innovative you can be and still have success. Masterclass!
Best posts made by kistrand
RE: MTGO and windows 10 not working for me
SOLVED! I finally managed to get this issue solved myself. Just in case someone else will get this problem I'll write down the solution here. The issue was with something called FIPS security encryption which basically checks that every program applies to certain high-level security encryption standards upon launching said program. Most programs usually enforce an override of this upon installation but this for some reason was not the case for me whereby the FIPS algorithm threw out the MTGO client every time I tried to start it and caused a crash. The solution which eventually worked (I tried everything from re-installing windows to messing around in the regedit) was to right-click the MTGO icon, select the security tab-->advanced--->auditing and there click the "disable inheritance"-button, apply and happy times are back : )
RE: Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor
This isn't a case of facts being in dispute. It is an actual philosophical difference. Your view measures a card's restrictability as a function of the quantity of appearances it makes in a series of tournaments that are recent in nature, relative to other cards doing so or the total pool of played cards. It focuses almost exclusively on a specific metagame at a specific point in time, namely, the present. I assess cards' restrictibility in terms of their effect on game play, raw power level and relative power level vis-a-vis other existing cards, and intangibles like "fun" factor and "outrageous!" factor, the appraisals of which elude verbal capture and recall the Supreme Court's obscenity test from the 1960's, "I know it when I see it."
Being a scientist myself I would say that you Brian have a qualitative approach and Stephen's is quantitative. The former is usually better when seeking deep understanding of a phenomenon and is used with low-n samples whereas the latter seeks to get the big picture, the overarching patterns so-to-speak, but needs a much higher N to work reliably. Just as in science, I think both of your approaches are needed here: we need to see the patterns but also to know why these are. Whether the sample sizes in Vintage are sufficient or not for a robust quantitative analysis is of course hard to tell, but Magic's just a game after all so doesn't need to be that serious and strict all the time.
RE: April 4, 2016 B&R Announcement
Having faced several post-restriction Shops decks on-line I would say that the deck has not suffered much in power level. Sure, maybe the nut draw has been mostly hampered but the matches surely felt just as hard and borderline impossible as ever before. Turn one sphere followed by turn two Karn, Silver Golem and then more spheres+wastelands is no easy lock to break free from. I discussed this with one of my opponents, the excellent shops pilot BlacklotusT1, and he felt that play-wise the restriction had not affected his deck. He just disliked the poor justifications for the banning. I agreed with these sentiments. So I would be very careful not to start removing the safeguards against shops both in mainboard and sideboard.
RE: RFC: Improving The Mana Drain
I agree with the original post that something is off with the discussions lately, @HouseOfCards post as a good point in case : ). Flaming is not adult behavior, that's something adolescents do. I do, however, agree with @HouseOfCards that the proposed rules seem too rigorous and would probably mean nobody would post anymore. So a good initiative @thecravenone but maybe a bit less strict with the rules?
RE: April 4, 2016 B&R Announcement
@Lysandros definitely second this. Being a relatively new player the arrogance of some is quite depressing. How can we have a healthy format if the only ones allowed to play are skilled player who don't just "get to play broken cards badly and win anyway"? I once faced one player with serious attitude problem on-line (won't reveal the nickname even though I could). He pointed out all the mistakes I made and was generally extremely rude and unwelcoming. Most players, fortunately, are very positive to new players and even give you good and honest advice. When you start out playing, if you have some seriousness about it, you want to learn the tier 1 decks and then you are kind of forced to play in the "tournament practice" room in MTGO since nobody basically plays Vintage anywhere else. The just for fun room in Standard, for instance, translates more to "the room for people who are still learning how to play good decks" whereas it in Vintage is more like "the room where people just play some silly deck that has nothing to do with the actual real decks in the format". So I do hope most of the community don't feel that the problem is less skilled players who force restriction of cards and thus ruin the "elite player's" format?
RE: On Sylvan Mentor
Thanks for this interesting list Rich . Just tried it for the first time, got paired against shops. I took the first game thanks to timely ancient grudge (plus flashback). Second game was back to pre-restriction days with turn one lodestone followed by phyrexian metamorph followed by tangle wire=game. Third game was simply epic, I had an opener with lots of artifact hate but got locked down quickly and pressured by Karn. I managed to get Dack in and steal Karn which eventually had to be sacked to smokestack (not before opponent metamorphed into Karn). But step by step I crawled into the game, minus 2:ed my Dack again to get the Karn copy (Dack died), and then started chewing at the spheres with 2x gurdge and nature's claim. Eventually I won with the copy and a Containment priest (just thrown in instead of dead spells) with less than a minute on the clock.
RE: On Sylvan Mentor
After having done some testing of other decks for a while, I recently returned to this deck (which I still consider as my main deck). To my great joy I found that it was still great and a very potent deck even in the current metagame, although you have to adjust the sideboard to all the prison-ish hate out there. Balance and more swords/paths are good as well as engineered explosives for all the spheres and hatebears (gotta hate 'em bears...).
RE: [Premium Book] Understanding Gush: Strategy & Tactics (2016)
@Smmenen I don't feel the book was too long. It was so interesting that it went quite fast once I took the time to read. I did not take notes per se but made mental notes. I especially focused on learning the four rules and the reasoning behind them. I did already use the tables as you intended, mainly though to check how my existing decks fit the ideals. I also became super inspired by the GushBond chapter, so much so that I had to build a version of the contemporary GushBond deck you depicted towards the end of the book (4C MentorGrow). I only had time to play one match with it so far, which I won 2-1. The third game I won with tendrils for storm 13 after a long sequence of Gushbonding. Why do you Steve think that GushBond decks aren't played much these days? To much hatebear disrpution or are there just more efficient Gush decks around?
RE: Oh Boy I Can't Wait For VSL Season 6!
@Topical_Island hmm, he played Gush in a very risky and aggressive way, often after already making his landdrop and ending turns without any lands on the board at all. However, he always did this with Mentor in play and in a commanding position in damage races so I guess it was right in the particular situations. Not sure what @Smmenen would have to say about that Gushing though : )
RE: [AER] Baral, Chief of Compliance
Been running this guy in a control-ish Mentor shell in the tournament practice room on MODO to rather good success (meaning at least slightly more wins than losses). Posting the decklist here for tips from more experienced players. Initially the list was more "passive" than "active" but it has gradually moved into a hybrid between aggro and control. Baral has been good, sometimes great. The cost reduction is good when "going off" with demonic tutor (cc =1 with Baral) or Tinker (cc = 2) or Yawgmoth's will (cc = 2). Looting is nice during normal turns but one needs to be careful to not loot without thinking through if you want to risk losing good cards in hand. Baral is obviously great against Thorn-effects, that's where he really shines. But anyways, on to the decklist:
3 Baral, Chief of Compliance
4 Force of Will
2 Jace, the Mind Sculptor
1 Swords to Plowshares
3 Monastery Mentor
2 Dack Fayden
2 Mana Drain
3 Mental Misstep
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
1 Treasure Cruise
1 Dig Through Time
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Black Lotus
1 Library of Alexandria
4 Flooded Strand
2 Scalding Tarn
2 Volcanic Island
2 Underground Sea
1 Mox Jet
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Polluted Delta
1 Blightsteel Colossus
1 Mindbreak Trap
1 Mindbreak Trap
3 Swords to Plowshares
3 Containment Priest
1 Grafdigger's Cage
2 Stony Silence
1 Supreme Verdict
1 Spell Pierce
RE: 7/15 - Sanctioned Vintage Trial - RIW Hobbies - Results and Lists - 17 players
Really like Kevin Cron's Solemnity list, not only the obvious Dark depths combo but also Mystic Remora. Very nice.
RE: Vintage Restricted List Discussion
@desolutionist I'm a European and can certainly agree that the online metagame has a lot more variation than the shops/mentor/paradoxical most discussions here seem to indicate that is all there is. Running into traditional (ravager)shops is even quite rare for me. I think you are right Shawn that using data from the most competitive tournaments ends up with a picture of a very narrow format. People who play in these do it to win (sure, they probably have fun too but their main goal is to win) so it's only natural that they stick to the top decks instead of risking it with a brew. Nonetheless I feel that the whole notion of a restricted list is geared towards balancing competitive play so maybe there is no other way to do it than to look at tournament data?
RE: B&R Update
Shops is perhaps borderline (probably Lodestone Golem is my primary target for restriction) but I don't think it needs any restrictions even though I, as a Gush Mentor player, am on the losing end of Shops more often than not. It is part of the natural flow of the metagame and keeps many other decks in check (decks which people would be complaining about instead since they would then dominate). Sure, the deck is hard to beat and requires a lot of sideboard space dedicated to it, but so do other archtypes (dregde etc.) I prefer that vintage is not turned into Modern and the natural balance of things is interfered with too often.
RE: April 4, 2016 B&R Announcement
@Topical_Island This, to me, is the core of this almost 300 posts long disagreement. It all boils down to people not wanting to lose. It's not fun not being able to cast any spells be it due to spheres or counterspells if you end up losing. If you manage to break through it and eventually win, it becomes fun and there's no problem. I think we should just appreciate all the strategies employed towards the end goal of winning. None is more legitimate than the other, they are just different ways of playing Magic.
RE: Gush mentor sideboard options post-LSG restriction
@shawnthehero typo 😀 and corrected...