[Official] State of Modern Thread (B&R 07/13/2020)

Cyanu
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Post by Cyanu » 2 years ago

This thread has always had something mindboggling about it... Most of the time it functions like some crazy pro-unban 'cult' that demonizes bans and equates unbans with generosity or goodwill from wizards, as if wizards and the playerbase have opposing goals and wizards abuses it's role to oppress the playerbase... bonus points for the obssesion with irrelevant numbers and statistics that are supposed to give credibility where there is none...

Yet at the same time it keeps preaching for targeted bans at whatever people seem to not enjoy playing against... for example people seem to celebrating the looting ban and are already grinding axes to get stirrings and opal banned despite that we don't even know how the new meta looks like and that UW already has a positive MU vs Tron!

Looting was like the ~5th best card in Hogaak and probably the 2nd or 3rd best enabler (definately below Supplier) it wasn't about Hoggakvine, that deck is dead now, instead it's a devastating blow to decks that MIGHT be worth it (like Izzet phoenix, Dredge), decks that are way too soon to tell if they're worth it (Mono red prowess/phoenix) and decks that are definately NOT worth it (Mardu Pyro, H1, Goryo's Vengeance, UR Living End and other fringe decks), there's not a single lotting deck out there that HAD to be banned, in short the looting ban went too far

You do realize that if we ban everything 'unfair' eventually fair stuff will become oppresive right? It's only natural for certain decks to become dominant if you keep nuking their bad mus from orbit, many of the crazy value stuff being played and being fine right now are only fine because other decks use stuff like looting and opal to enable their own crazy plays, if we ban everything eventually stuff like JTM and SFM will end up oppresive, SFM is fine if you're attacking with 2 phoenixes turn 2 not if you're attacking with a lone nacatl on t2...

if stuff like Dredge and Phoenix were to become too good, subtler bans would have done the trick (like Stinkweed Imp for dredge and manamorphose for phoenix) to power down their nut draws without destroying the decks outright

in short if you're celebrating this bizzare turn of events you probably haven't think this through, Modern will be a different format tomorrow but many people lost their decks and the format just became more expensive because the decks we lost were viable and affordable while what we gained is yet another ridiculously prized staple that essentially locks the color white behind a crazy price tag... even Martyr Proc is now expensive...

I suspect that in it's attempts to please a sub-group of the playerbase wotc will eventually push UWx too far, just take a minute to think how much has this deck gained and at what rate do its' bad mu's get banned... it even beats tron now.. Hogaak and the mono red decks were among it's last remaining bad mus... i expect that now UWx pilots will start turning their attention to Jund and increase the numbers of Spell Snare to combat w6 and goyfs along with other crazy value stuff to crush this mu... many of the fringe decks that occasionally managed to get the jump on UW are also dead due to looting,not to mention they have to fight through FoN now, though i suspect that some people will like that and that's a problem...

Now i'm jumping out before this thread devolves into ridiculous Twin talk as it always seems to

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Arkmer
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Post by Arkmer » 2 years ago

Cyanu wrote:
2 years ago
I suspect that in it's attempts to please a sub-group of the playerbase wotc will eventually push UWx too far
More than a few people (myself included) have already spoken about how UW has gone too far. Not yet bannable, but, depending on who you talk to, only by numbers.

Again, not a time to panic about bans we "need immediately" (as my disclaimer), but decent discussion about what could be coming down the pipe as dominant in the format is a good choice in topic. UW does seem to be in a good spot, but, until it shows actual bannable numbers, it will likely stick around in it's current form.

I'm predicting a rise in removal that says "Destroy" on it and it really gets me excited to play some kind of UB again.
Last edited by Arkmer 2 years ago, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Wraithpk » 2 years ago

Sure, there probably wasn't a specific Looting deck that needed a ban after Hogaak was gone, but Looting was causing a systematic problem in the format. Abusing the graveyard had become the best thing to do in Modern with so many different payoffs, and that was largely on the power of Faithless Looting enabling all those payoffs. Looting being gone makes those decks slower and less consistent, so graveyard decks might not be the best thing to do anymore, which brings us back to a more fair meta, hopefully.
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Simto
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Post by Simto » 2 years ago

mikej wrote:
2 years ago
Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Banning Faithless Looting is a mistake and I don't even play looting decks.

I'm worried all the "BAN THIS CARD!!!" people will direct their gaze at Tron cards now.........
Ban Tron?

Are you threatening me with a good time?
Plenty of ways to kill tron. Have a good time while killing it.

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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Banning Faithless Looting is a mistake and I don't even play looting decks.

I'm worried all the "BAN THIS CARD!!!" people will direct their gaze at Tron cards now.........
Not Tron cards, but Stirrings will be a target for most of the year. You can count on it.
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Post by Amalek0 » 2 years ago

[mention]ktkenshinx[/mention] While I agree that looting probably eliminates the almost negligible difference between 2015 and 2018 speed averages, that wasn't my point; my point is that the requirement to do stuff to interact with your opponent on turn 2/3 or to win the game imminently yourself hasn't gone away. The fast decks from 2015 have gotten more toys in the intervening time to help keep them fast and consistent (I'm thinking of light up the stage and its bolt-buddy, the kaladesh block pump + hexproof spell, and baral/aria/lava dart for the spellslinger archetypes).

These bans didn't suddenly turn modern into legacy or standard; there won't immediately be a complete dichotomy of stack based vs board-presence decks, and there won't be a sudden shift to "midrange creature curves of all the flavors". Modern will still be fundamentally defined by the speed at which burn, infect, and affinity can consistently kill you.

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Post by Simto » 2 years ago

idSurge wrote:
2 years ago
Simto wrote:
2 years ago
Banning Faithless Looting is a mistake and I don't even play looting decks.

I'm worried all the "BAN THIS CARD!!!" people will direct their gaze at Tron cards now.........
Not Tron cards, but Stirrings will be a target for most of the year. You can count on it.
Yep, I knew it was going to get the "BAN IT!!!!" target if Faithless Looting went :(

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idSurge
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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

As it should. It should have been removed with KCI.
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Simto
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Post by Simto » 2 years ago

idSurge wrote:
2 years ago
As it should. It should have been removed with KCI.
lol nah :)

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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

It really, really should. I mean its fine, it is just a matter of time, but it will go eventually, unless they continue to hit things around it.

Its so much like looting in the abstract that its not funny.

Regardless, its not a fight for today, its a hypothetical for a year or 2 later.
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Bearscape
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Post by Bearscape » 2 years ago

Although I too expect Stirrings to get hit eventually, I want to play devil's advocate a bit about why Stirring is less obnoxious than Looting

Although stirrings gives the same insane consistency looting gives, that's where the comparison ends. Looting also sets up the decks it fuels, and was often comparable to Ancestral Recall. And although I didn't do the stats, I want to say that on average, Looting decks were much faster than stirrings decks, which in my opinion gave for the worst gameplay; There's been several instances of people raving about some looting deck presenting lethal on turn 2/3, whereas stirrings decks *generally* give more of a chance to come back. Yes, KCI had turn 3 kills, but these were somewhat rare (and involved Mox Opal). Resilience and consistency was what got KCI banned and might get Stirrings banned, but looting is/was that and then some.

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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

Yeah, I'm not saying its a problem today. In fact I dont know that it can be as it IS more narrow than looting.

I'm just saying its moved up the ladder.

Not that it's particularly important, I'm actually happy on a ban day for the first time in a while, and I have 0 intent to buy SFM.

I'm just glad Wizards was willing to take such a wide view for once.
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Post by erhnamdjinn » 2 years ago

I dont get why people want to have splinter twin back? The deck is a insta top deck win if you get lucky and the combo is hard to stop if you are not playing blue, plus blue now has force of negation to protect the combo, the only cards I can see going of the list in the future is green sun zenith and punishing fire

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Wraithpk
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Post by Wraithpk » 2 years ago

erhnamdjinn wrote:
2 years ago
I dont get why people want to have splinter twin back? The deck is a insta top deck win if you get lucky and the combo is hard to stop if you are not playing blue, plus blue now has force of negation to protect the combo, the only cards I can see going of the list in the future is green sun zenith and punishing fire
Yeah, it's a combo deck, any combo deck can win with a lucky top deck. And I don't know why you think you need to play blue to stop the combo. Jund was always good against Twin, and they don't play blue. So was Burn. You need creature removal to stop the combo, and every color has access to that. Also, Force of Negation doesn't protect the combo when they're trying to cast the Twin on their turn. It can only protect the combo if you try to kill the creature on your turn when they flash it in, which, granted, is a pretty good use for the card for Twin.


In other news, I just sold my extra playset of SFMs for $280 on TCGPlayer :grin:

I kinda want to build Whirza, but I'm honestly pretty concerned that it's going to be really good now that Hogaak isn't around, and it'll need a ban. It's matchup data from the GPs is kinda unreal.
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Post by drmarkb » 2 years ago

cfusionpm wrote:
2 years ago

drmarkb wrote:
2 years ago
If you are referring to the ban, yeah there is always the lucky hunch element. I am ultra conservative at Mtg finance, however, and can sniff a ban a mile away, at least against a deck if not the card. I often wargame financial scenarios. I did pay a lot of attention to what people said on the ground rather than the online banlist discussions, and the event schedules etc. Event schedules had a big ban list impact, still do to an extent. I don't crunch numbers besides prices, my gut felt a ban in the offing. I do get things wrong - fifty swan songs is testament to that, but my hunch was a ban to hurt the deck big time, I figured Twin or, more likely, Exarch.
The ban was a surprise ban, but not enough of one to catch me. Sometimes you get lucky.
I mean, in 2015 the only people saying Twin should be banned were kooks and people without a leg to stand on. Everyone in all of Magic knew that Summer Bloom would be gone, and most people predicted that with its removal, Twin's presence would actually subside (since Twin was pretty much the only deck with a positive Bloom matchup). But rather than let that play out, WOTC pulled the rug out and banned Twin too.

For perspective, this would be like predicting today, right now, that Mox Opal will be banned, selling them off, and then watching it get banned alongside Hogaak tomorrow. Sure, that means the prediction turned out right, but it doesn't make it any less "randomly out of left field" than Twin was. A broken clock is right twice a day; doesn't mean it's a good way to tell time. And in 2015, the only ones clamoring for a Twin ban were the same broken clocks that call for bans on all sorts of random things in the format.
I have explained quite clearly that I suspected a ban and got lucky, to an extent. When you bet against the market there is always that element.

You keep saying that no people suspected a ban of Twin. You talked of "proving" that Twin is not a diversity reducer. I did suspect a "surprise" ban, and I made money, rather than people arguing over data etc. the proof is in the money and the fact I largely sold out, keeping just 4 Tarn and 4 copies of Twin, from a reasonably substantial position.

You will note what I said on my own post, fat fingers and all:

I think we may never see unbans of SFM vatiety except when they need to do something unpleasant, so it is possible.


I have no idea if it is correct to unban SFM, but I know it was never going to happen out of the blue. Today would have been far, far more likely than any time over the last couple of years when the banlist has been relatively quiet.

Look at this announcement from history


Dig Through Time, Treasure Cruise, and Birthing Pod are banned.
Golgari Grave-Troll is no longer banned.

Legacy:

Treasure Cruise is banned.
Worldgorger Dragon is no longer banned.

Vintage:

Treasure Cruise is restricted.
Gifts Ungiven is no longer restricted.

Cruise was a huge issue, massive mistake- so they did as many things to get people talking about other bans/unbans as possible- - unbanings for formats that were massively affected by TC. To an extent it is reasonable- because if you are upsetting the apple cart then the apples will be all over the floor regardless of unbans- and it shields them from criticism if unbans turn out to be wrong. Pod was not a suspected ban- but yeah - I sold mine - about twenty copies- 6 months before.

It is a similar pattern in the "unexpected" Standard bans that accompanied the blindingly obvious ones, except these were "surprise" bans, but the apple cart was getting kicked over anyway, so what better time to make big changes (from their POV).


You mentioned Opal- I did indeed decide that was too risky a hold and sold my small number 8-IIRC, but I made a fair profit on each. So far I was wrong, it was one of those moments I remember as a loss, currently. But I am right far, far more often than twice a day- partly because I detach myself as much as I can from the debate- emotionally speaking. For what it is worth I did not call for a Twin ban at the time, I rarely do call for bans- I just expected a big apple cart moment, and Twin seemed the most likely "surprise". I have made a lot of cash on MTG - 5 figures on Ebay, in as many years, private sales to match, and I am now part time at work, partly due to having a hobby that is damn near free, although my security costs are there - and I have plowed a lot of it into Legacy staples- I loan out Legacy decks, and was given a community award by one store for my efforts, so my work has helped a lot of people play Legacy who otherwise would not have had the chance.

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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

erhnamdjinn wrote:
2 years ago
I dont get why people want to have splinter twin back? The deck is a insta top deck win if you get lucky and the combo is hard to stop if you are not playing blue, plus blue now has force of negation to protect the combo, the only cards I can see going of the list in the future is green sun zenith and punishing fire
Why do this? Honest to God, why? You are wrong at least 3 times here, and all you are going to do is kick off the discussion again.
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Post by ktkenshinx » 2 years ago

Please, no more Twin talk. There's more to this thread than Twin, especially in the wake of this update. I don't think we should be talking about any unbans or bans period at this point. At least not for many months.

I'm much more interested in discussing where the metagame might evolve. We have a few top-tier decks which will remain strong, even as decks shift from GY hate to more artifact and big mana hate. Jund will help regulate random nonsense, and will in turn be regulated by Tron/Amulet/Titanshift/etc. Fast decks and UW Control should be able to hold down the big mana share (at least, Tron). UW Control itself will lose to Jund and stuff like E-Tron. We'll also see Urza decks, Affinity, and Hardened Scales somewhere in that mix, plus Burn variants probably putting up middling but influential performance. Overall, a cool picture if it plays out.
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Post by idSurge » 2 years ago

I think the beauty of it is, if the GY decks are meaningfully nerfed by this, instead of just throwing in 4 Burning Inquiry and calling it a day then its like you've outlined, we could go back to an actually logical meta flow between the Big Mana/Midrange (with Bant and UWx and Wx getting a boost) and 'Hard Control' UW/Esper, with Aggro in the form of Scales, Burn, and Infect. Storm comes back as well, and its possible things like Ad Naus return.

Honestly the removal of Looting is simply huge, and will shake things up without just a reversion to Dredge/Phoenix. Best part of the update, easily.
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Post by worldsaverinc » 2 years ago

I am more interested in what decks cam come back with these two cards banned. Will am expansive Tier 2 emerge again as days gone bye? Which decks will come back that were pushed out by the graveyard decks.

I am thinking some of the non-Human tribal decks might make a resurgence like Merfolk, Spirits, or Elves.

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Post by kddncn » 2 years ago

ktkenshinx wrote:
2 years ago
Please, no more Twin talk. There's more to this thread than Twin, especially in the wake of this update. I don't think we should be talking about any unbans or bans period at this point. At least not for many months.

I'm much more interested in discussing where the metagame might evolve. We have a few top-tier decks which will remain strong, even as decks shift from GY hate to more artifact and big mana hate. Jund will help regulate random nonsense, and will in turn be regulated by Tron/Amulet/Titanshift/etc. Fast decks and UW Control should be able to hold down the big mana share (at least, Tron). UW Control itself will lose to Jund and stuff like E-Tron. We'll also see Urza decks, Affinity, and Hardened Scales somewhere in that mix, plus Burn variants probably putting up middling but influential performance. Overall, a cool picture if it plays out.
I am somewhat surprised they didn't at least mention Whirza in the B&R announcement, since my understanding from GP data is that the deck has otherwise been doing *very* well. With that stated, I would expect a lot of Whirza, Tron, and Wxx SFM brews on modo in the coming week(s). Decks like Grixis Death's Shadow with K-Command main might be worthwhile to check out again. I actually still expect modern dredge to be able to stick around, and if I still had the list I would put back in neonates over looting and see if people get risky on cutting gy hate from the board, but I'm not as knowledgable about the viability of other gy decks post-faithless looting ban. Also, RIP phoenix/mono red prowess decks, good luck to people trying to keep those viable.
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Myllior
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Post by Myllior » 2 years ago

idSurge wrote:
2 years ago
Storm comes back as well
I'd just logged on to say this. I hope there's enough attention drawn away from the graveyard for this to be the case. Can't beat the elegance of counting to twenty.

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Post by drmarkb » 2 years ago

After a big ban people who own more than one deck- which is the majority of players, and certainly those with disposable cash- often go to their safe "other" good deck- so I expect Affinity and Scales, Tron, Humans and Jund at your LGSes. Most people have a couple of top tier decks, and a couple of pet decks.
The Mardu players will move to Jund which is the only deck I am expecting price rises for beyond those directlygenerated by the unbanning SFM, which will be UW control variants- I expect people to play with various Stoneblade builds, Caw Blades, UWx- and, of course- hatebear decks. People who don't like the top tier decks will try adding SFM into everything from Soul Sisters to Martyr Proc- but they were not the people on Hoogy decks anyway......

I am not sure there will be more Storm.

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Post by ModernDefector » 2 years ago

Modern's had four bans in eight months, in three separate announcements.

Lawd lol The absolute state.

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Post by Zorakkiller » 2 years ago

this was a fantastic b&r update. I'm glad wotc acknowledged that the format was too focused on the graveyard and they couldnt just do a conservative ban. this was a great first step toward fixing the formats issues and building good will with the player base. hopefully we get some more unbans in the future such as green sun's zenith, punishing fire and twin.

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Post by cfusionpm » 2 years ago

erhnamdjinn wrote:
2 years ago
I dont get why people want to have splinter twin back? The deck is a insta top deck win if you get lucky and the combo is hard to stop if you are not playing blue, plus blue now has force of negation to protect the combo, the only cards I can see going of the list in the future is green sun zenith and punishing fire
I want to play Snapcaster Mage, Remand, Cryptic Command, and Ligntning Bolt in a deck that's not terrible jank. Also Force does not protect the combo.

But in all seriousness, the removal of Looting makes Modern at least tolerable moving forward (with or without SFM). While no Twin was very sad for me personally, this is an overall great win for the format.

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