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

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Post by cfusionpm » 2 years ago

ktkenshinx wrote:
2 years ago
I don't judge those players and just let all these player types do their thing.
I don't judge them either, they're free to do whatever they want. But when I make time out of my busy schedule to stay up late after a long day of work to actually play in paper, and I sit across from someone whose goal it is to make sure I have the worst experience possible, I tend not to enjoy myself. Especially when that time is limited to maybe 4-5 rounds every 2-3 weeks. At least once in the past, when I knew someone's deck, I have simply signed the slip and walked away to play Commander for 49 minutes. It's just not worth wasting my time over a miserable experience, that I'm probably not going to win, when it's supposed to be fun and enjoyable.

Not playing in paper is probably why I've been having the best time I've had in Modern for YEARS lately. Not just because of the Hogaak and Looting ban, but because I'm playing online and in the casual rooms. I am not paying any money to enter, and I can right click → concede at any point to move on to the next match. Plus, once I stopped wasting my time with terrible Stoneforge piles and instead played super fun piles like Esper Mentor/Unearth (currently with 8x main deck discard, LotV, T3feri, and Meddling Mage), I've been having an amazing time. :party: :party:

New Paradoxical Outcome deck looks like another miserable pile of "do nothing then win" that epitomizes, in my view, the worst of the format. A fun deck to solitaire, and an utter annoyance to any opponent. I can't wait to insta-concede to that one too! Along with most of the other Opal and Stirrings decks, now that Looting is gone!

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Post by Arkmer » 2 years ago

spawnofhastur wrote:
2 years ago
> Wants Splinter-Twin unbanned.
> Complains about misery in the format.

Pick one.
I'm fairly certain his point is that Twin is over immediately when it combos. There is no trying to loop through something for 10 minutes, you just win and move on with life or your opponent responds with something and the game continues like normal.

The other decks he is referencing take 10+ minutes to do an indeterminate thing and you just sit and watch your opponent. You are now unable to leave and unable to participate for quite awhile. I would agree that it's fairly miserable, uninteresting, and makes me not want to play the game.

Combo decks are fine, sometimes even healthy for the format (same as anything else), but I also struggle to see the format value in decks that want me to sit and watch without even letting me get an untap step. If you're going to combo, just end it immediately; I really don't care if you can play 80 spells in an intricate loop and still possibly fizzle. As such, your binary "Pick one" is not very relevant because you're not trying to understand the point he's making or you're just blatantly ignoring which gets us no where.

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

Tzoulis wrote:
2 years ago
Spoiler
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The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
Albegas wrote:
2 years ago
Ultimately, going back to whether it's OK to have another "frustrating" deck in the format, there's a difference between disrupting normal play (Eggs, Nexus in Bo1 Arena) and simply creating an experience others find frustrating (Lantern, Teferi looping in standard), and unless the deck is doing the former, there's no reason why the deck can't do the latter. That being said, I haven't actually seen the Paradoxical Outcome deck in action, and I'm curious if people think it's another Eggs deck or another Lantern deck since it seems most of the discussion has been less about the deck and more about analyzing complaints of frustration
would be nice if someone can link a decklist here.
anyway, don't really have a problem with these type of combo the decks. More competitive decks present in modern, the more fun and diverse the format becomes - just my subjective opinion..
You usually win on the spot if you have Urza and Paradox Engine (95% of the time). To be honest, most games I'm winning because I'm creating a huge amount of thopters/servos and not because I'm going infinite with either Nexus or Aethergrid, while some list are toying with Reservoir which I find easier to disrupt. The deck is still in its nascent stage and there are a few cards coming from Eldraine that will empower it even more (Namely Witching Well, Emry, Lurker of the Loch and Wishclaw Talisman)

For reference here's the list I played today:
nice deck, and thanks for the share. Now I have a basic idea on how it works. :)
certainly some improvements from Eld cards. Emry adds consistency, and is another legendary for mox amber.
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Post by cfusionpm » 2 years ago

The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
Tzoulis wrote:
2 years ago
Spoiler
Show
The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago


would be nice if someone can link a decklist here.
anyway, don't really have a problem with these type of combo the decks. More competitive decks present in modern, the more fun and diverse the format becomes - just my subjective opinion..
You usually win on the spot if you have Urza and Paradox Engine (95% of the time). To be honest, most games I'm winning because I'm creating a huge amount of thopters/servos and not because I'm going infinite with either Nexus or Aethergrid, while some list are toying with Reservoir which I find easier to disrupt. The deck is still in its nascent stage and there are a few cards coming from Eldraine that will empower it even more (Namely Witching Well, Emry, Lurker of the Loch and Wishclaw Talisman)

For reference here's the list I played today:
nice deck, and thanks for the share. Now I have a basic idea on how it works. :)
certainly some improvements from Eld cards. Emry adds consistency, and is another legendary for mox amber.
The deck definitely looks interesting to play (disregarding opponent interaction), but it falls into the same awkward trap of Whirza in general: either you have the cards and are playing and 'enjoying' the deck, or you are weighing whether or not it's worth it to drop $450+ on a playset of a single card that at any point could eat a ban (and has been mentioned in the past as being watched). The only thing that feels worse than having a deck receive a ban is having it banned right after spending a ton of money building it.

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

[mention]cfusionpm[/mention]

sold all my opals along a playset of arcbound ravager year 2017, as I needed the cash back then. But still, it's fun looking at the new competitive decks in modern. People are really creative brewing up new strong lists like this Paradoxical Outcome deck. Modern would become stale if it's always the same decks, so I'm always glad to see new ones. About the ban, I think it's not only opal that is in danger. Have seen a few threads in other sites complaining about the power level of Urza as well. Although in my opinion... wotc would think twice about banning the opal. Faithless looting is a 1 dollar card.. hogaak is a 6-7 dollar card at the time of banning --- compare those to opal who is now a 100 dollar card. More people would be enraged on a 100 dollar card getting banned.
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Post by Mtgthewary » 2 years ago

They can do both. Reprinting it and banning after

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Post by Arkmer » 2 years ago

The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
Sold all my opals along a playset of arcbound ravager year 2017, as I needed the cash back then. But still, it's fun looking at the new competitive decks in modern. People are really creative brewing up new strong lists like this Paradoxical Outcome deck. Modern would become stale if it's always the same decks, so I'm always glad to see new ones. About the ban, I think it's not only opal that is in danger. Have seen a few threads in other sites complaining about the power level of Urza as well. Although in my opinion... wotc would think twice about banning the opal. Faithless looting is a 1 dollar card.. hogaak is a 6-7 dollar card at the time of banning --- compare those to opal who is now a 100 dollar card. More people would be enraged on a 100 dollar card getting banned.
Part of Hogaak staying so low in value was that it was so obvious it was going to be banned. I'm not too certain how that reflects on a $100 card but it could drop some if the playerbase starts to see an obvious banning incoming. Granted it's $100 and was already announced as being watched.

Suffice to say, I'm glad I sold mine a few months ago, but am now in the odd position of having the rest of the affinity cards and no Opals. I plan on selling Tron soon as well, mostly hoping it picks up in strength and popularity, but I'm not convinced it'll happen in the next 6 months.
Mtgthewary wrote:
2 years ago
They can do both. Reprinting it and banning after
I'm fairly certain that's a great way to really piss off more players than if they just banned it. It'll still be a very valuable card if it gets reprinted, especially in a non-standard set (which is the likely home of the unlikely reprint), so many more people will suddenly shell out for a playset only to suddenly have it banned away.

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

Suffice to say, I'm glad I sold mine a few months ago, but am now in the odd position of having the rest of the affinity cards and no Opals. I plan on selling Tron soon as well, mostly hoping it picks up in strength and popularity, but I'm not convinced it'll happen in the next 6 months.
[mention]Arkmer[/mention]

was faced with the same dilemma, I recycled the leftover affinity cards into a pauper deck with Gearseeker Serpent. Affinity is a competitive deck in pauper, so it's a good way to reuse them.

cannot comment much about Tron, as I never owned a tron deck. My playtest buddy owns an Eldrazi Tron though, aggressive deck and almost full powered with chalices. But I think he did not own big karn, the price exploded before he could get one. It's rather ironic... when big karn was first printed, people in our area laughed at those who used him in standard... now big karn is 60 dollar card.
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Post by tronix » 2 years ago

personally im not worried about some paradoxical combo deck atm. even if the whirza shells or it MIGHT be considered the 'best' thing to be doing, by my observations it wouldnt be by a significant margin (or in other words in the 'tier 0' realm like hogaak). such decks, which have a lot of non-intuitive play patterns and few pieces that work across decks/archetypes, tend to be slow at gaining traction; meaning they are much less likely to be 'oppressive' in what id consider the average players modern experience. for instance look at a deck such as kci or even amulet versus decks such as ur phoenix or humans. even when the former were considered very good the popularity/following was disproportionately small.

modern is taking a back seat right now and should be for the rest of the year, and tbh i think that should be considered a good thing. high profile tournaments given all the chaos in the format right now, let alone this year in general, tend to skew perceptions moreso than anything else. im all for giving the format some breathing room to digest and explore. in fact im honestly a little relieved that ELD looks on the lower to middling range in power, but admittedly im not the best at new card eval.

likewise, unless some opal deck DOES present itself as 'tier 0' in its presence and results, id rather see any talk of its potential ban tabled for at least another six months to a year. as much as we talk about lootings getting the axe being a good thing lets not forget that bans, let alone one as influential and as far reaching as lootings, do irreparable damage to the format and player confidence. modern is (relatively) expensive to buy into or play (as its always been), and it isnt easy to recoup the losses from players losing decks and or quitting because of it. the last thing the format needs for a while is more shake ups.
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Post by metalmusic_4 » 2 years ago

The Fluff wrote:
2 years ago
Suffice to say, I'm glad I sold mine a few months ago, but am now in the odd position of having the rest of the affinity cards and no Opals. I plan on selling Tron soon as well, mostly hoping it picks up in strength and popularity, but I'm not convinced it'll happen in the next 6 months.
Arkmer

was faced with the same dilemma, I recycled the leftover affinity cards into a pauper deck with Gearseeker Serpent. Affinity is a competitive deck in pauper, so it's a good way to reuse them.

cannot comment much about Tron, as I never owned a tron deck. My playtest buddy owns an Eldrazi Tron though, aggressive deck and almost full powered with chalices. But I think he did not own big karn, the price exploded before he could get one. It's rather ironic... when big karn was first printed, people in our area laughed at those who used him in standard... now big karn is 60 dollar card.
I got rid of my opals during eldrazi winter. Affinity was the only thing competing with eldrazi and we all knew eldrazi was getting a ban, so I thought opal may go too. Well I was wrong, but I am not rebuying them at anywhere near the current price. There is to much risk in buying opals now. I mean buying hogaaks at $7 each when it may get banned is one thing, but $120 opals are a bit different.

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Post by tronix » 2 years ago

looks like the recent mtgo modern challenge was an object lesson on the consequences of cutting GY hate. plenty of dredge, and a whopping 4 copies of SFM total appearing in one eldrazi shell.

kanister, one of the more prolific mtgo players known for innovating/brewing, did work with the paradoxical shell but there's still plenty of the more 'standard' whirza lists. interested to see where things end up, particularly after that emry card from ELD.

https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/a ... 2019-09-22
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Post by Amalek0 » 2 years ago

I think part of the lesson of that challenge is that stoneblade decks (and fair decks in general) seem not to have cracked the whirza problem other than "race it".

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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 2 years ago

I don't think there is a chance of Mox Opal getting banned any time soon. I don't even think it is a super integral piece in Whirza - it just makes the deck have slightly quicker goldfishes. The strength of the deck is in the consistency and the raw power, not the explosiveness. There are plenty of decks that are quicker. In my opinion, you can consider it similar to a Birthing Pod or Splinter Twin type deck, probably closest to Kiki Pod in how it does in the meta and which decks it just beats (albeit not super badly).
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Post by Wraithpk » 2 years ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
2 years ago
I don't think there is a chance of Mox Opal getting banned any time soon. I don't even think it is a super integral piece in Whirza - it just makes the deck have slightly quicker goldfishes. The strength of the deck is in the consistency and the raw power, not the explosiveness. There are plenty of decks that are quicker. In my opinion, you can consider it similar to a Birthing Pod or Splinter Twin type deck, probably closest to Kiki Pod in how it does in the meta and which decks it just beats (albeit not super badly).
While I agree with you, this is also the reasoning that made Summer Bloom the ban in the Titan deck. They didn't want Titan having both very good late game grind and fast turn 2 or 3 kills. I could see Opal being the ban to slow down the faster kills. Without Opal, the deck can't kill before turn 4. It basically becomes exactly Splinter Twin; no kills before turn 4, but a really good mid to late game, with the threat of the "gotcha" infinite combo.
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Post by tronix » 2 years ago

yeh opal has always been an outlier. i dont like using a vague term like 'raw power', but its a rainbow mox and it raises the ceiling on the decks playing it considerably by facilitating the (typically) most 'degenerate' play patterns.

i could see some whirza shell remaining competitive without opal, similarly kci may have stuck around. opal sits in a spot where its been propping up artifact decks in the format since the beginning. in that regard i always saw a closer analog between lootings and opal than lootings and stirrings (or whatever cantrip).

i often mention how most/many cards scale in efficacy, but not at the same rate. the most efficient enablers, consistency tools, or payoffs arent problems in themselves since its just a function of the card pool, however they should be the object of scrutiny as considerations for long term format progression.

for the sake of discussion, yeah id agree that opal is the summer bloom of these whirza decks. however bloom was insulated to that one deck. so comparing the bloom or even the recent bridge ban and something like the lootings ban show conflicting or at least distinct ban philosophy parameters. based on previous actions we can deduce wotc considers stuff like:

-getting rid of the piece facilitating the fastest or hard to interact with patterns
-de-powering a deck in a manner improving its odds of sticking around
-minimizing collateral/splash damage
-a history or track record of a card becoming prominent across decks exhibiting similar play
-the dubious and rather open ended identification on diversity and what may be limiting it

im sure you could list more and or variations on these. basically it implies that there arent strict guidelines and cards are examine case by case with the associated contextual variables; of which id imagine some amount of 'hoping for the best' is going on when it comes to predicting and planning around the aftermath.

suffice it to say i wouldnt be surprised if opal wasnt at the top of the list in this hypothetical scenario, despite it both being the most 'busted' card (ie the summer bloom) and potentially depowering the deck without killing it entirely. the further reaching ramifications of opal no longer being around, much like lootings, means it maybe needs to be influencing the format significantly across multiple decks before it ever gets on the chopping block.
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 2 years ago

The most busted card in Whirza is Urza, Lord High Artificer. If you kill it when they have 5 mana up, they've gotten a free card and an X/X token. If you don't kill it, you are dead to many different draws that get them the combo (similar to Splinter Twin). If you kill Urza, you stand to lose to the token. The deck has redundancy in the Eggs of the deck - Arcum's Astrolabe being the best one. The deck can draw to Urza pretty easily, especially in multiples if the game goes past turn 4. The deck can also draw to Thopter/Sword, which never was a problem on its own before Urza came out. Something about potential 1/1s and 2/3 not being more than the mana in your pool...

Opal is indeed a card to make decks go fast. It is literally for nothing else, just like Simian Spirit Guide. But I don't think it's the violator in my opinion - the 2 for one that is tough to interact with IS. When there was a card like Faithless Looting in the format, decks were fast, blazingly fast. Whirza was still played at that time and probably was a top 5 deck, if just barely. Without decks to speed through them like how Infect and other blazingly quick decks beat KCI, the deck is free to grind out other decks. This is similar to Pod decks, which got to the late game and just had an overwhelming chance to win in the late game if it made it there.

*I am biased because I don't want Opal banned. I think it would be a rough banning when Ancient Stirrings does more to this format overall. I personally compare Looting and Stirrings because both cards were/are better than any current Blue cantrip and better than Preordain in my opinion. Sure, Preordain can be played in every single deck, including Mono White Taxes and Stirrings is played in 1 deck, but the fact remains that digging 5 cards deep to get a land or colorless card is just freakishly strong.
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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

I feel it's too soon to ban anything right now. If they banned opal on the next announce, it would be a ban mania as Hog and Looting went to the farm just a little while ago.

Although a little worried about Emry and other eld cards making Whirza decks a little too consistent.,
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Post by cfusionpm » 2 years ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
2 years ago
The most busted card in Whirza is Urza, Lord High Artificer. If you kill it when they have 5 mana up, they've gotten a free card and an X/X token. If you don't kill it, you are dead to many different draws that get them the combo (similar to Splinter Twin). If you kill Urza, you stand to lose to the token. The deck has redundancy in the Eggs of the deck - Arcum's Astrolabe being the best one. The deck can draw to Urza pretty easily, especially in multiples if the game goes past turn 4. The deck can also draw to Thopter/Sword, which never was a problem on its own before Urza came out. Something about potential 1/1s and 2/3 not being more than the mana in your pool...
The deck is so much better than Splinter Twin. At least when you fizzle Twin, we're left with a 2/1 or a 1/4, and not a 9/9 construct, assuming the creature lived and you didn't get 2-for-1'd LOL. As mentioned before, I wish I could justify buying into Whirza. It looks fantastic, flexible, grindy, but can also just win out of nowhere (with or without the combat step). I love it. Its better than Twin ever was. I just really don't want to throw down nearly $1,000 for all the missing pieces. Especially with questionable ban possibilities; even if slim.

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Post by Arkmer » 2 years ago

I highly doubt Whirza gets a ban. Slower artifact decks have always been subject to the wide variety of artifact sweepers in every color except black. There's the targeted removal to boot, but that's mostly just buying time against Whirza.

I think if we see a Whirza take over, the non-Whirza players will look toward Rebuild, Fracturing Gust, Shatterstorm, Creeping Corrosion, Hurkyl's Recall, Reduce to Dreams, and just maybe the long shot of Furnace Dragon if they get frisky with Chalice. It's not going to be a free win for everyone, but there are enough decks out there that can make room for the appropriate hate if it comes to it. Whirza may make the top rungs of the ladder but it won't kick everyone else off.

Despite my earlier talk about having sold my Opals, I really just dislike the decks they go in. Affinity and Scales were not my style and I'm not big on Prison decks. Opal being on the watch list was just the final nail for me. Good decision or not, WotC may just choose to ban it in the future and I don't want to be stuck holding them especially after deciding that they're not my style.

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Post by tronix » 2 years ago

i mean any serious talk about bannings is obviously premature. if whirza shells prove to be so bad to need banning within the next 6 months at the least im confident wizards would go for the throat and choose urza. it would by a majorly bad look for wizards and the format. like really bad. at that point its about damage control, or in other words minimizing damage which banning opal wouldnt do. its like i was saying, decks/cards are evaluated case by case with context, and in such a hypothetical the context is multiple recent bannings including widely played card in lootings.

regardless im only entertaining the discussion on whirza as a thought experiment because of how it ties into how wizards may choose certain cards and why. whirza just happens to (or at least appears to) hold similarities both in strategy and certain cards to multiple decks hit in the past for distinctly different reasons.
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Post by Amalek0 » 2 years ago

I think people are blowing whirza out of proportion. There's a number of things the deck IS just weak to, and it's benefiting right now from a format that *was* very heavy on precision grave-hate, and light on artifact hate, shifting to a sideboard arms race against big mana and midrange decks instead of back to artifact hate.

No matter what build the whirza decks are on, they DO have a *lot* of "air". Cards that don't really do anything but enable churn and mana production with urza. If you can stick and protect a rest in peace, you're realistically talking about a deck with four urza that can each bring a token and have "5: put a random permanent into play", and a non-infinite number of 1/1 flyer tokens. Can the deck grind? yeah. Is it better at grinding than your average midrange deck if denied its graveyard or activation of thopter foundry? I don't think so.

AFTER it wins consecutive GP level events or shows T64 dominance in a few consecutive events, we can talk about it being a problem. For now, I think it's a deck that exploited a prior metagame, and which continues to exploit the shift in metagame during the time period it doesn't have a target on its back.

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Post by Depian » 2 years ago

I don't disagree that it can be fought with the right tools but saying that Whirza was great in the previous metagame (heavy graveyard hate) and then explain how you can stop it in the current metagame using Rest in Peace is a bit weird, I was thinking more about artifact hate, cards like Stony Silence or Ancient Grudge.

I would love to play the deck as it seems quite fun while being a strong deck, the only thing restraining me to do so is Mox Opal's price tag and that could be impacting how much play the deck sees as I could see more people in my situation.

When Hogaak popped out, the most expensive cards were not really in risk of getting banned (Lands, Vengevine and Bloodghast) so buying 4 Hogaak was a reasonable investment (<$50)to compete with the best deck until it got banned, with Urza, you have to put $500 down the line in the only card of the deck that has been mentioned in a B&R announcement (with good reason, fast mana is very powerful) and that, has an impact on the deck's metashare (unlike Jund, where cards are expensive but you would be really surprised to see any of them banned anytime soon).

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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

cfusionpm wrote:
2 years ago
The deck is so much better than Splinter Twin. At least when you fizzle Twin, we're left with a 2/1 or a 1/4, and not a 9/9 construct, assuming the creature lived and you didn't get 2-for-1'd LOL. As mentioned before, I wish I could justify buying into Whirza. It looks fantastic, flexible, grindy, but can also just win out of nowhere (with or without the combat step). I love it. Its better than Twin ever was. I just really don't want to throw down nearly $1,000 for all the missing pieces. Especially with questionable ban possibilities; even if slim.
I think someone said already in the thread. Perhaps one thing WoTC could do is reprint the opal?
This should lower the price and reduce the fear of players that it might get banned,
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Post by Albegas » 2 years ago

Lower the price? Yes. Reduce the fear of a ban? Not a chance, just ask anyone who bought into Twin after the reprint. The only thing that can reinforce belief that a card won't be banned are tournament results showing that the deck(s) using the card are not over-performing over a reasonable period of time. Sadly we really don't have that right now for Opal post-Hogaak. There's only a team tournament and MtGO data, and Wizards holds most of the relevant statistics at the moment

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The Fluff
is this so?
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Post by The Fluff » 2 years ago

ah, my mistake then.. forgot about what happened with Splinter Twin... that thing took some players by a complete surprise.

I guess just one of the few things that still protect Opal from a ban is it is a very expensive card, and wotc would be wary in banning such a thing.
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