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posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Does not mean you would not use these too. Ill grant that you want 5 real moxen plus opal before these, and diamond may be a better option for some lists, but this can find a place.

Likely this is a modern card, but just like amber ill bet it finds a home in a list that makes use of its unique abilities along with lotus bloom in a citadel based deck. Or like an open the vaults thing. Notable that it is not legendary like opal or amber.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Yea discount this all you want but it comes off the top free for bolas's citadel.

Mox amber eventually found a home in modern, i suspect this may as well.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Serendib efreet but with the "downside" of bazaar -1 card. Quite pushed, but Blue Skies has not been a deck in any format for years. I could imagine a Modern deck that wants this, but I don't think itll have any issues getting it.

Cool card but a few years late to be blunt.

posted in Vintage Strategy read more

@inkfathombiomage said in Threshold for non game winning Mill:

Note that in hearthstone it’s different because a) you have a smaller deck, so you’re more likely to go through the whole thing and b) you don’t lose when you run out of cards in deck, so removing cards from an opponent’s library is relevant in more situations where decking is not.

I dont think it is that different as to not be relevant. Hearthstone games on average last around the same number of turns as magic, sometimes a bit more. You don't outright lose in that game when you run out of deck, you do however start progressively start losing more and more life every turn because of it and eventually it will kill you. There are mill strategies for just that reason.

We regard a card like sadistic sacrament fringe playable because it is targeted mill, we know what it will hit, but there is not a gaurentee that the cards we remove would ever be drawn in the first place. Where as people dont play blind mill for this very reason, they do play sacrament.

I guess my question then becomes how much value does this type of mill add when it is incidental/value added to the card. If Ashiok did not mill but still did everything else, how would we regard him? I think its clear that the mill into exile adds something we ascribe some value to, but how much?

posted in Vintage Strategy read more

I'm not sure your assertion that they have equal chances to draw or discard the wincon is correct. Here is why.

Let's say in my example X =20 and your opponent has 40 cards left in their deck. They have one wincon in the deck (again, for simplicity sake).

I have a 50% chance of removing that wincon in this example. If I don't hit the wincon I increase the odds that you draw it from 2.5% to 5%. While I increased the odds of you drawing that card by the same percentage I just had to mill it, you only gained 2.5% to draw it. 50% for me to win on the spot vs giving you slightly better odds to draw it seems like a really good shot, and discounting all the other utility in this obviously very simplified it seems like better odds to remove the threat I need to remove than the odds surrounding me sideboarding in answers to the card and then being in a position to have them when I need them and be in a position to play them.

My point here is that mill like Ashiok, with exile included, is actually a proactive way to remove threats, which I don't think we ever really considered with mill in the past. I still believe you will use this mill more so in tandem with other cards in a mill strategy before you included it into a general deck as a value play, but knowing what the value of it helps us evaluate how good these cards could be when the mill/exile effect is tacked onto another card in the future, potentially as value add to the cards primary effect.

Another supporting example appears in Hearthstone, where exile/mill effects have been observed in similar ways to work. I understand it is a different game but there are similarities enough that I think it is relevant. In that game there is a card that is simply a very generic creature (think 2/2 or 2/3 for 2CMC in magic) that milled the top card of your opponents deck when it came into play, and there are a significant number of matches in that game that milling has been the catalyst for winning.

Deck size in Hearthstone is 30 with a 3 card starting hand, so in magic this would be the equivalent of a 2/3 for 2 that milled 2. There is also no graveyard in HS, so in effect all mill effects also exile. Most cards can be played in 2's with the exception of legendary cards which are limited to 1 (so in effect eaiser to draw than any given restricted list card in magic.)

This card has been observed plenty of times milling 1 card and forcing concedes because of what it milled. In games where it does not mill a card that causes an auto-concede there, it can often be accredited with long term gains in the control match up. Very few cases can be looked at where the random mill off the deck tangibly cost the game for that deck Not everyone ran the card, but enough of them did that it became ubiquitous win the story line.

posted in Vintage Strategy read more

This is stemming mostly from the discussion around Ashiok, Dream Render from the latest episode of So Many Insane Plays. In the episode, it is speculated that Ashiok's mill with exile is powerful enough and plentiful enough that it could win games on it's own, ostensibly by removing wincons from your opponents deck and giving you inevitability in a drawn out game. Obviously Ashiok has a TON of other utility outside of milling cards which pushes him into a new category, but it made me question how we as a community treat mill on a whole.

Conventional wisdom is that strictly mill cards in the traditional sense are unplayable unless they win you the game on the spot, something like a painterstone combo. The logic is that because mill is off the top, anything that does not kill your opponent on the spot is just milling random cards, and that the mill is just as likely to mill your opponents good cards as it is cards they did not want to draw. Compound that with all the graveyard strategies in the game and mill is typically just garbage.

So it got me thinking while you cannot control what gets milled, your opponent put those cards in their list for a reason. There are games that players can look back at (Typically limited but it can happen in any format) where a card that milled cards from your opponents list won you the game because of what it milled, so while it is random it can be powerful.

I think the concept of milling directly into exile, should that become the new norm, possibly shifts our paradigm. By removing the possibility of giving your opponent graveyard fuel, you take away most of the risk inherent in milling someone. Playing mill cards that exile for the sake of potentially removing vital pieces from an opponents combo or synergies and providing inevitability could become worth playing. If they do you then just need to weigh if taking a chance to mill a key card and attacking a library is worth the trade off for playing cards that do not affect the board or stack. Is it worth spending mana and a card to potentially remove part of keyvault some of the time?

So here is my question. How many cards would a card have to mill directly to exile for it to be worth playing just for that ability (and not all the other things that Ashiok brings.) Let say you have this card:

Super Tomb Scour - U
Your opponent removes the top X cards from the top of their deck and puts them into exile.

What would X have to be for this card to be playable?

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

With a lot of these new pitch cards you truly are not locking your opponent out unless you get Karn and lattice, but I think with the inclusion of this guy you can do a main deck lattice and 1 in the board and actually reasonably make that happen.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

I'm not saying its good or anything but you can do something like:

Spend 1 - Play Koth - Get ~3 red mana - Repeat this with all your koths or Chandras
Spend 1 - Play Will Kenrith - Fetch Sister - Use -2 ability to draw 2 cards and reduce the cost of all your stuff
Spend 1 - Play Rowan Kenrith - Fetch Brother - Use whatever, shes crap
Repeat Kenrith loop
Spend 1 Play the new Samut
Spend 1 Play the new Sarkhan - Make everyone a dragon with Haste

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

I have to go review the red walkers now. I feel like there is probably a way to use Koth of the hammer as a ritual engine + some other walker to draw cards or get back other dead walker or something where you could combo off with this.

Makes red Mana - Chandra, Torch of Defiance, Koth of the hammer, Chandra, Bold Pyromancer, Sarkhan Unbroken
Draws Net cards - Chandra Ablaze, Lord Windgrace, Any number of Jaces
Wincons - Nicol Bolas, God-Pharaoh
Combos - Will Kenrith and Rowan Kenrith looping and drawing, Sarkhan the Masterless plus Samut the tested and possibly Sarkhan the Mad

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Well it is very relevant if it keeps the buff. If I cast this one a 1/1 and you bolt it and I invigorate in response, it's the difference between having an 10 power infect dude or a 6 power one.