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

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Tzoulis
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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
Lastly, wtf is "degeneracy" or a "degenerate format"? Because I can't possibly envision an interpretation that puts Legacy and Vintage below Modern.
Legacy is less degenerate because there are stop gaps, aka FoW, Daze, and viable Prison strategies. Modern can never have that kind of defense. Do you know how many times I saw someone enter a Modern stream chat and ask what kind of Legacy deck that is just to realize that all of the main engine pieces that are legal in Legacy are also legal in Modern; just different mana? Force of Negation was a big start and a very positive card. Modern needs more cards like that.

The only people that think Legacy is just all turn 1 combos is someone who has never or barely ever actually played the format. Legacy has some really long and thought out games that could end very quickly if someone had made an egregious mistake. Counter wars with Flusterstorm can be tough to navigate, even in today's Veil meta. The only people that don't like Legacy are people who can't afford it. That is definitely a problem, but you can't say that it sucks because you can't play it. Sometimes you get killed on turn 1 and realize, maybe I should have mulled to Grafdigger's Cage, Force of Will, or Surgical Extraction. Maybe I will come with Mindbreak Traps next week.

I haven't actually played Vintage for a long time, but I've watched plenty of streams recently. It actually is a lot more interesting than I had guessed it to be, but still I can see someone's view of whoever draws the most busted cards wins.
I've played (and watched) Legacy. I never claimed Legacy was a T1 race, but those decks DO exist and they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest. And that's with almost no competitive spotlight on Legacy.

In every format, every single time, the best thing you'll be able to do is go fast and make them answer the thing you do. Legacy has those tools to fight them, but they still aren't enough. They're not consistent enough. Reanimator can just Duress and/or Unmask you on T1 with you doing anything. Dredge laughs at stack based interaction. Storm is slower, but now with Witchclaw FAR more resilient and consistent. Also, LED's a thing.

Also, Eldrazi with Spirit Guides, Once Upon a Time and 10+ Sol Lands.

Vintage is a bunch of degenerate combo/value engines that look awesome because they play with P9 and other extremely broken cards. Even the "fair" decks, mostly the 4C Deathrite piles, got nothing against Outcome and Shops.

So, no, I don't see those formats as less degenerate than Modern. Note, that many people would (and have) considered Prison strategies as degenerate. You might not (I don't either), but others have.

Stop gaps rarely help. Wrenn + Wasteland was in the format and Turbo Depths was still one of the better decks. There's only one relevant control deck and one Delver variant, the rest are "degenerate" combo decks. How is that picture healthier (or less "degenerate")?

You're reinforcing my point, that Legacy (and Vintage) have the perception of being a "haven" for interactive decks or that interaction is rewarded there, but that's %$#%$#%. Combo and Aggro rule the day in these formats (and Stax/Shops in Vintage).
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
Lastly, wtf is "degeneracy" or a "degenerate format"?
A format which exists on the basis of having less tools to combat powerful lines of play which function on the various axis points that when unregulated lead to banned cards.

Wasteland, FoW, Daze, Ponder, Brainstorm.
And the format that has those is also a degenerate mess. As mentioned above, and we've said before Legacy has the perception of being "fair" or reward interaction. Reality is that it's broken AF and far more degenerate than Modern.
Greeksis wrote:
1 year ago
Modern was very good during the Humans/Spirits era, because both of those decks had Delver's role in Legacy. Lots of disruption + fast kills.

That's what Modern needs to return to that great state it was. A delver like deck, Twin like deck, Humans-Spirits like deck at Tier 1.
Twin killed fast when it combo'd. When it didn't it, the game took many turns. While I did like the format during the Spirits/Human era (Summer of 2018 iirc), the period of post-Oko to pre-Ikoria had as top decks highly interactive decks and skillful matchups.

Yes it was dominated by Astrolabe, but why is an Astrolabe meta worse than a meta dominated by Vial/Cavern?

The only reason control was played during the Spirits/Human era, was because Miracles was briefly a thing (Terminus bypassed Selfless Spirit AND Queller), but Cavern and Vial invalidated almost all Counters.

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
The only reason control was played during the Spirits/Human era, was because Miracles was briefly a thing (Terminus bypassed Selfless Spirit AND Queller), but Cavern and Vial invalidated almost all Counters.
This was also the only time UWR was viable at all.
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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
The only reason control was played during the Spirits/Human era, was because Miracles was briefly a thing (Terminus bypassed Selfless Spirit AND Queller), but Cavern and Vial invalidated almost all Counters.
Just yesterday and today, I ran into a Counterbalance Miracles list... twice. Dunno if it was the same guy or two decks, but saw the interaction with Mystic Sanctuary and Terminus. Might be worth exploring...? Iduno. I was playing Dredge (which I put together with the Tix I got from selling a single Bauble) and 2-0'd it both times, so.... maybe not?

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

The UR guy on Twitter ran that as well. Awesome if your into that style.
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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

Oh and let it also be noted, I'm playing broken %$#% in Arena right now too. Everyone is. Every format is busted.

I just went.

1. Stomping Ground into Ghitu Lavarunner
2. Sulfur Falls into Runaway Steam-Kin
3. Mountain, Attack, Light Up the Stage, Opponent EOT Lightning Strike on opponents Fact or Fiction creature (whatever the UB thing is).
4. Untap, Steam Vents, Song of Creation (remove 3 counters for 3 Red) Skewer, Skewer, *opponent has conceded*.

Turn 4 Win, and I was about to draw my deck, or bolt my opponent out of the game (Deck runs 12 'bolts' + 4 Shocks), I've done this many times now, and the only problem is, other decks are even more busted and will win on Turn 3 even, in Historic.

I mean they didnt even ban Winota lol.
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 1 year ago

idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Oh and let it also be noted, I'm playing broken %$#% in Arena right now too. Everyone is. Every format is busted.

I just went.

1. Stomping Ground into Ghitu Lavarunner
2. Sulfur Falls into Runaway Steam-Kin
3. Mountain, Attack, Light Up the Stage, Opponent EOT Lightning Strike on opponents Fact or Fiction creature (whatever the UB thing is).
4. Untap, Steam Vents, Song of Creation (remove 3 counters for 3 Red) Skewer, Skewer, *opponent has conceded*.

Turn 4 Win, and I was about to draw my deck, or bolt my opponent out of the game (Deck runs 12 'bolts' + 4 Shocks), I've done this many times now, and the only problem is, other decks are even more busted and will win on Turn 3 even, in Historic.

I mean they didnt even ban Winota lol.
That's what I was the most surprised about. I don't play with or against her, but I hear so many comments from friends and other players about it. I guess it's not that bad?..
Standard - Will pick up what's good when paper starts
Pre Modern - Do not own anymore
Pioneer - DEAD
Modern - Jund Sacrifice, Jeskai Phoenix, Elementals, Trollementals, BR Asmo/Goryo's, Yawmoth Chord
Legacy - No more cards, will rebuy Sneak Show when I can
Limited - Will start when paper starts
Commander - Nope

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Oh and let it also be noted, I'm playing broken %$#% in Arena right now too. Everyone is. Every format is busted.

I just went.

1. Stomping Ground into Ghitu Lavarunner
2. Sulfur Falls into Runaway Steam-Kin
3. Mountain, Attack, Light Up the Stage, Opponent EOT Lightning Strike on opponents Fact or Fiction creature (whatever the UB thing is).
4. Untap, Steam Vents, Song of Creation (remove 3 counters for 3 Red) Skewer, Skewer, *opponent has conceded*.

Turn 4 Win, and I was about to draw my deck, or bolt my opponent out of the game (Deck runs 12 'bolts' + 4 Shocks), I've done this many times now, and the only problem is, other decks are even more busted and will win on Turn 3 even, in Historic.

I mean they didnt even ban Winota lol.
That's what I was the most surprised about. I don't play with or against her, but I hear so many comments from friends and other players about it. I guess it's not that bad?..
Turn 1 Dork
Turn 2 Legion Warboss, Make a Token.
Turn 3 Winota, Make a Token, Swing with 3 (the Warboss alone will bury you lol), Dig 6 x 3 looking for Human bombs which are placed TAPPED AND ATTACKING AND GIVEN INVULN.

Oh and then everything stick's around, and you get to do it again.

Its a format where you quite seriously (and honestly I think Standard is much the same) have a pivotal turn, must remove threat, as early as turns 2 or 3.

Broken stuff.
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 1 year ago

idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Oh and let it also be noted, I'm playing broken %$#% in Arena right now too. Everyone is. Every format is busted.

I just went.

1. Stomping Ground into Ghitu Lavarunner
2. Sulfur Falls into Runaway Steam-Kin
3. Mountain, Attack, Light Up the Stage, Opponent EOT Lightning Strike on opponents Fact or Fiction creature (whatever the UB thing is).
4. Untap, Steam Vents, Song of Creation (remove 3 counters for 3 Red) Skewer, Skewer, *opponent has conceded*.

Turn 4 Win, and I was about to draw my deck, or bolt my opponent out of the game (Deck runs 12 'bolts' + 4 Shocks), I've done this many times now, and the only problem is, other decks are even more busted and will win on Turn 3 even, in Historic.

I mean they didnt even ban Winota lol.
That's what I was the most surprised about. I don't play with or against her, but I hear so many comments from friends and other players about it. I guess it's not that bad?..
Turn 1 Dork
Turn 2 Legion Warboss, Make a Token.
Turn 3 Winota, Make a Token, Swing with 3 (the Warboss alone will bury you lol), Dig 6 x 3 looking for Human bombs which are placed TAPPED AND ATTACKING AND GIVEN INVULN.

Oh and then everything stick's around, and you get to do it again.

Its a format where you quite seriously (and honestly I think Standard is much the same) have a pivotal turn, must remove threat, as early as turns 2 or 3.

Broken stuff.
That made me laugh. That's really ridiculous stuff. Maybe I should look into Historic, lol? :P
Standard - Will pick up what's good when paper starts
Pre Modern - Do not own anymore
Pioneer - DEAD
Modern - Jund Sacrifice, Jeskai Phoenix, Elementals, Trollementals, BR Asmo/Goryo's, Yawmoth Chord
Legacy - No more cards, will rebuy Sneak Show when I can
Limited - Will start when paper starts
Commander - Nope

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

I dont think I have lost to a fair deck outside of Esper Control, but that was in a game I was foolishly trying to force UR Control. :D
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Post by True-Name Nemesis » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
I've played (and watched) Legacy. I never claimed Legacy was a T1 race, but those decks DO exist and they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest. And that's with almost no competitive spotlight on Legacy.
"but those decks DO exist" Correct
"they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest." Wrong

Do you want to provide any statistics for these claims?

Aggregated of all submitted online and offline event decklists for 2020 on MTGTop8
Image

The best turn 1 combo deck in reanimator is 2%. Some of the other good combo decks like Show and Tell or Storm can go off on turn 2 and in extremely rare situations, turn 1. But mostly turn 3 is the stable turn for going off.

Even if you go back and look at the total aggregated lists for 2019, 2018, 2017 you will find similar percentage share of combo decks. And they are not by any definition "a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest." You will find the largest shares of the meta tend to be delver or control variants.

Even the last paper GP we had back in December 2019, there is no way any rational person could look at the metagame breakdown and claim that fast combo is a large/biggest percentage of the meta.

Whatever your personal feelings are on the levels of 'degeneracy' between Modern and Legacy, fast combo has not been the dominant force in Legacy for the past 4 years.

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Post by Aazadan » 1 year ago

The best turn 1 combo deck in reanimator is 2%. Some of the other good combo decks like Show and Tell or Storm can go off on turn 2 and in extremely rare situations, turn 1. But mostly turn 3 is the stable turn for going off.
Modern is mostly balanced as a T4 format. Things shouldn't be consistently winning before that, but inconsistent wins earlier can be ok.
Legacy is the same, but T3.
Vintage is T2.

That doesn't mean games are always over that fast, but that they shouldn't be faster. They can always be slower. I'm not super familiar with the current Legacy metagame, but for several years the average Legacy game actually took more turns than the average Modern game, despite the faster allowed combo turn.

That was mostly due to the power of Legacy answers in effectively slowing games down.

The problem we have today though is that even Legacy level answers are no longer enough to contain the types of cards WotC is printing due to the quantity of them, and their power level which goes back to the issue that the game is seriously screwed up at the moment due to poor card design and development.

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
The only reason control was played during the Spirits/Human era, was because Miracles was briefly a thing (Terminus bypassed Selfless Spirit AND Queller), but Cavern and Vial invalidated almost all Counters.
This was also the only time UWR was viable at all.
cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
The only reason control was played during the Spirits/Human era, was because Miracles was briefly a thing (Terminus bypassed Selfless Spirit AND Queller), but Cavern and Vial invalidated almost all Counters.
Just yesterday and today, I ran into a Counterbalance Miracles list... twice. Dunno if it was the same guy or two decks, but saw the interaction with Mystic Sanctuary and Terminus. Might be worth exploring...? Iduno. I was playing Dredge (which I put together with the Tix I got from selling a single Bauble) and 2-0'd it both times, so.... maybe not?
I've seen the list, but I didn't mention it because it was irrelevant to my point. I'll probably try it first chance I get though.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
"they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest." Wrong
Unless there's a language barrier, how does that breakdown prove me wrong?

Your dataset is 6 months in which 37% is combo and 38% is aggro, are you going for pedantic or dishonest?

Your dataset includes the full companion %$#% show, and aggro has Eldrazi decks (which it is), but it definitely is degenerate -14+ pieces of fast mana? So how does this prove me wrong?

Lastly, your GP dataset is right after the banning of Wrenn and Six. Unless you want me to quote to you the meta of similar periods in Modern and show (falsely) that there's nothing wrong with the format. The meta was expected to lean more "fair" since people were falling back to familiar decks (or whatever's available). Which is exactly the problem with Legacy, card availability and sunk-cost. It has the perception of rewarding interaction, but it really doesn't.
Greeksis wrote:
1 year ago
I agree with True-Name Nemesis's data-based opinion about Legacy. All the stats in the world prove Legacy is not a degenerate format. Brainstorming, Pondering, Fowing, using cards like Snappie, Daze, countering stuff while having some Young Pyromancer, Delver, or Anglers attacking, playing Uro's, Oko's, thoughtseizing the opponent, using powerful sweepers is the name of the game in Legacy and that's not degenerate for sure. Does it feel degenerate if you play non blue decks? Mostly, but even Lands have a way to destroy the opp's lands, DnT has that same thing also. Yes, there is Storm, which is Tier 1 (Dredge is not, it's just a super bad deck), there is Show & tell in tier 1 and that's that. Hogaak maybe also.

If we put similar stats for Modern, history will show that Modern is more degenerate than Legacy, and by a wide margin.

Quite honestly, I see Legacy as the format Modern should be closer to. Pioneer should be closer to Standard in power level, and be what Modern used to be in it's start. But since they banned Faithless Looting & Mox Opal, they lowered the power level.
Aside from their data (or their interpretation of it) being wrong, how exactly is Legacy better? Spamming cantrips is far better for degenerate decks, rather than fair.

The last legacy challenge (post ban) had 1 fair deck in the 6-0 bracket, while things were somewhat better in the 5-1 bracket. Likewise for the Prelim. And that's me using flawed data.

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

Greeksis wrote:
1 year ago
I don't think people here are trying to persuade you that Legacy is better than Modern. That's more of an opinion and everybody plays what he likes more.

I think people are just trying to explain you that Legacy is not a more degenerate format, as you claim in your "take a look at Legacy" point. Even if Modern is not a degenerate(I assume you mean hyper linear by that) format(which is a long discussion-people here think it is degenerate-), it has always been more degenerate at times than Legacy.

The spamming of cantrips you say happens in fair decks mostly and it happens much more in fair decks than it does happen in degenerate decks.
True-Name Nemesis's numbers showcase exactly that.
If you take a look into the picture, the spamming of cantrips is an element of
Delver variants, Miracles variants, Astrolabe variants(as of now), Stoneblade, Grixis Control in nearly 25-35% of the metagame(you can calculate the exact number, if you will).
The spamming of cantrips in decks like Ad Naus, S&T and other blue based combo decks(remember BR Reanimator doesn't run U) => ~10%

This means that the spamming of cantrips in Legacy is being used 3 or more times more than it is being used in degenerate decks.

If you also add the fair decks, meaning all Delver, miracles, astrolabe/snow variants, Grixis Control, Stoneblade, D&T it will give you a much larger number than Show and Tell, ANT, Reanimator decks will.
They've been trying to and they've failed to do so - you included. Aside from the fact that other than @idSurge, no-one has tried to provide me with an adequate explanation of what "degenerate" is. It usually is just a shorthand for combo and aggro decks that cheat on resources.

So, going by that interpretation, and any interpretation near that, how have I been proven wrong?

The numbers provided show that 37% of the Legacy meta of the past 6 months has been combo and 38% aggro (with 5% of it being Eldrazi). Also, from the control side of things 2% of it are Lands. So how does almost half the meta being degenerate compare to the almost 40% of degenerate Combo/Aggro/Control decks (I included Urza as degenerate and I'm being -very- liberal with including it) for the same period?

As for the GP: One, it's just one event after the banning of Wrenn and Six (similar things have happened after bannings/unbannings in Modern) and Two, it's just one event.

Modern has always been more linear, not degenerate. If you're going with Linear=Degenerate, then you're gonna have to say so.

I also specifically said that spamming cantrips is far better for degenerate decks or in other words it's more effective for them, not that there are more degenerate cantrip spamming combo decks. So I still fail see how spamming cantrips is somehow a sign of health for a format.

Again, MTG Top 8's own break down disproves your last assertion. Unless you're changing your data set to MTG Goldfish, which has its own set of problems and includes data pre-ban. Post ban, the Challenge was dominated by combo/degenerate decks and the Prelim was a wash.

So again, how have I been proven wrong?

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Post by True-Name Nemesis » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
Unless there's a language barrier, how does that breakdown prove me wrong?

Your dataset is 6 months in which 37% is combo and 38% is aggro, are you going for pedantic or dishonest?

Your dataset includes the full companion %$#% show, and aggro has Eldrazi decks (which it is), but it definitely is degenerate -14+ pieces of fast mana? So how does this prove me wrong?

Lastly, your GP dataset is right after the banning of Wrenn and Six. Unless you want me to quote to you the meta of similar periods in Modern and show (falsely) that there's nothing wrong with the format. The meta was expected to lean more "fair" since people were falling back to familiar decks (or whatever's available). Which is exactly the problem with Legacy, card availability and sunk-cost. It has the perception of rewarding interaction, but it really doesn't.
Are you implying that all Combo decks in general are degenerate then? That's being pedantic and dishonest because you know full well I was referring to the very fastest of combo decks. As quoted by you.
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
I've played (and watched) Legacy. I never claimed Legacy was a T1 race, but those decks DO exist and they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest. And that's with almost no competitive spotlight on Legacy.
Don't come in and accuse people of being pedantic and dishonest when you're lumping every combo deck + aggro deck together and classifying them as degenerate.

Look at all the damn past years of data then on MTGtop8 then. No need to paint a false picture of Legacy to push your narrative of Modern.

Edit: Yes, MTGTop8's general classification of decks leaves a lot to be desired. And there can be a lot of overlap of midrange decks between the aggro and control classifications. When 38% off aggro decks that you deride as degenerate include all Delver variants, Death and Taxes, Maverick variants etc, all extremely fair and interactive decks. You're being deliberately obtuse to push your narrative.
Last edited by True-Name Nemesis 1 year ago, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

I'm not sure given the present state of generally everything, that I care, but degeneracy to me is breaking the rules of Magic.

Land per turn.
Card per turn.
Free Mana/Cards.

Ramp, Combo, are both clearly degenerate in this example. Runaway Steam-kin, is part of degenerate engines. Even if not in Modern.

Formats with tools to combat this, are (imo) less degenerate, than those missing the tools.

Ultimately, it's just my view on things, but again it's tough to continue to care at all for any number of reasons.
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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

Greeksis wrote:
1 year ago
I rest my case, as I think its one of those cases where you are not going to change your mind. Numbers were given, people who actively play legacy said their piece, but it seems that you want to be right, even if you were proven wrong. I just think data > opinionated post from someone who does not know the format.
That's rich. The data provided disproved your view. Yet, I'm the one that won't change my mind? Who said I don't actually play Legacy? When a discussion similar to this occurred a few months back the "players that play Legacy" agreed to the fact that Legacy hides its degeneracy behind a veil of passable interaction because of several limiting factors.

You've ignored all these and countered that you agree with someone and that I'm wrong with no further argumentation.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
Are you implying that all Combo decks in general are degenerate then? That's being pedantic and dishonest because you know full well I was referring to the very fastest of combo decks. As quoted by you.
I'm not implying anything. You people haven't given me ANY definition of what "degenerate" means. I went with the most common complaint of combo decks and decks that cheat on resources.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
Don't come in and accuse people of being pedantic and dishonest when you're lumping every combo deck + aggro deck together and classifying them as degenerate.

Look at all the damn past years of data then on MTGtop8 then. No need to paint a false picture of Legacy to push your narrative of Modern.

Edit: Yes, MTGTop8's general classification of decks leaves a lot to be desired. And there can be a lot of overlap of midrange decks between the aggro and control classifications. When 38% off aggro decks that you deride as degenerate include all Delver variants, Death and Taxes, Maverick variants etc, all extremely fair and interactive decks. You're being deliberately obtuse to push your narrative.
You provided the date without any extra elaboration. You didn't provide me with a definition and based on the most common view on "degenerate" I've seen, I did that. Also, I didn't lump ALL aggro decks together. I was specific in mentioning only Eldrazi (several times too).

I looked past 2020, the data stays the same. Combo and "degeneracy" is top in Legacy and it's not any worse because there's no competitive impetus to break the format wide open. The fact that Legacy has the perception of being "fair" or "reward interaction" is just that, a perception and you've done nothing to present argument to the contrary.

So, yes you're dishonest both because I didn't lump Aggro decks together with combo just to push my narrative and because you haven't provided a clear definition of what YOU think degenerate is so we can see which format is worse.

Again, Modern has always been more LINEAR than Legacy, unless YOUR argument is that LINEAR = DEGENERATE, then please provide a better definition other than the most complained one of combo/cheating on resources = degeneracy. Because, based on that definition Modern is better (and has been since Oko) far better than Legacy. The data YOU provided -and the source- doesn't dispute this.
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
I'm not sure given the present state of generally everything, that I care, but degeneracy to me is breaking the rules of Magic.

Land per turn.
Card per turn.
Free Mana/Cards.

Ramp
This I can agree with, mostly. Not all ramp is equal. Sol lands and Amulet are, Hour of Promise and Search for Tomorrow aren't.

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Post by True-Name Nemesis » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
Greeksis wrote:
1 year ago
I rest my case, as I think its one of those cases where you are not going to change your mind. Numbers were given, people who actively play legacy said their piece, but it seems that you want to be right, even if you were proven wrong. I just think data > opinionated post from someone who does not know the format.
That's rich. The data provided disproved your view. Yet, I'm the one that won't change my mind? Who said I don't actually play Legacy? When a discussion similar to this occurred a few months back the "players that play Legacy" agreed to the fact that Legacy hides its degeneracy behind a veil of passable interaction because of several limiting factors.

You've ignored all these and countered that you agree with someone and that I'm wrong with no further argumentation.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
Are you implying that all Combo decks in general are degenerate then? That's being pedantic and dishonest because you know full well I was referring to the very fastest of combo decks. As quoted by you.
I'm not implying anything. You people haven't given me ANY definition of what "degenerate" means. I went with the most common complaint of combo decks and decks that cheat on resources.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
Don't come in and accuse people of being pedantic and dishonest when you're lumping every combo deck + aggro deck together and classifying them as degenerate.

Look at all the damn past years of data then on MTGtop8 then. No need to paint a false picture of Legacy to push your narrative of Modern.

Edit: Yes, MTGTop8's general classification of decks leaves a lot to be desired. And there can be a lot of overlap of midrange decks between the aggro and control classifications. When 38% off aggro decks that you deride as degenerate include all Delver variants, Death and Taxes, Maverick variants etc, all extremely fair and interactive decks. You're being deliberately obtuse to push your narrative.
You provided the date without any extra elaboration. You didn't provide me with a definition and based on the most common view on "degenerate" I've seen, I did that. Also, I didn't lump ALL aggro decks together. I was specific in mentioning only Eldrazi (several times too).

I looked past 2020, the data stays the same. Combo and "degeneracy" is top in Legacy and it's not any worse because there's no competitive impetus to break the format wide open. The fact that Legacy has the perception of being "fair" or "reward interaction" is just that, a perception and you've done nothing to present argument to the contrary.

So, yes you're dishonest both because I didn't lump Aggro decks together with combo just to push my narrative and because you haven't provided a clear definition of what YOU think degenerate is so we can see which format is worse.

Again, Modern has always been more LINEAR than Legacy, unless YOUR argument is that LINEAR = DEGENERATE, then please provide a better definition other than the most complained one of combo/cheating on resources = degeneracy. Because, based on that definition Modern is better (and has been since Oko) far better than Legacy. The data YOU provided -and the source- doesn't dispute this.
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
I'm not sure given the present state of generally everything, that I care, but degeneracy to me is breaking the rules of Magic.

Land per turn.
Card per turn.
Free Mana/Cards.

Ramp
This I can agree with, mostly. Not all ramp is equal. Sol lands and Amulet are, Hour of Promise and Search for Tomorrow aren't.
I will state this. My initial post never mentioned degeneracy at all. That's something you chose to pursue and nitpick on. For me degeneracy cannot be compared cross-formats as they are individual formats that exist in a vacuum. Turn 3 combo through disruption is widely considered ban-worthy in Modern and is accepted as the norm in Legacy.

I play both formats for different reasons, and in that regard what I like/dislike/find acceptable in each format is different. Legacy gives me game play that I can't get in Modern and vice versa. I have no stand on which format is more degenerate.

I'm also not going to tell you that Legacy is better than Modern or whatever. As far as I'm concerned, right now all constructed formats are in equally terrible shape.

Neither do I need to provide any definition of what 'degeneracy' is to me as I have not made any argument about 'degeneracy' in my replies to you.

I don't see any dishonesty on my part based on any points that involve 'degeneracy'

What I did address in my post however, is what I quoted initially. The definition of 'degeneracy' is not relevant to the part your post which I quoted. Not sure why you think it's relevant to nitpick about degeneracy to me.
Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
I've played (and watched) Legacy. I never claimed Legacy was a T1 race, but those decks DO exist and they're a large percentage of the meta, if not the biggest. And that's with almost no competitive spotlight on Legacy.
based on the context of the post you replied to
FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
The only people that think Legacy is just all turn 1 combos is someone who has never or barely ever actually played the format. Legacy has some really long and thought out games that could end very quickly if someone had made an egregious mistake. Counter wars with Flusterstorm can be tough to navigate, even in today's Veil meta.
Which is the implication that fast combo decks are a large percentage of the meta. Which by the all stats provided, they are clearly not. If I misunderstood what you implied in context, feel free to correct me.

Turn 3 is the standard combo turn in Legacy, and while the combo decks in Legacy are strong and resilient, the top tier combo decks with the exception of BR reanimator tend to not be able to go off both safely and consistently before turn 3 unless you are 100% certain that it's safe based on game knowledge. You would know this if you have played Legacy as you claimed.

If your argument was that combo as a macro-archetype has the biggest percentage, then yes agreed no arguments there. But that's not the context of what I quoted. Again, if I misunderstood here, feel free to correct me.

So for me 'fast' is defined as earlier than turn 3. This is where I should have done better at defining the parameters and where we may have some confusion.

That aside, lumping all the combo decks together like you did is being disingenuous seeing as how many of the combo decks in the list are not 'fast' by Legacy standards, or if they are, they are extremely fragile.

I stand by what I said, Fast combo is NOT a large (debatable, maybe 20% is considered large to you) OR the biggest percentage (not debatable) of the Legacy Meta.

Legacy has many problems brought about by the design mistakes of 19/20, and has also had many issues throughout the years, but fast combo decks is not one of them.

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Post by drmarkb » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
drmarkb wrote:
1 year ago
Collector booster sales are great for this by all accounts, not sure about draft.
Sad times, but the masses like it so expect more.
I would assume Draft is doing well. Many people like the format from what I've heard from friends. Very few of my friends actually hate the Limited format. I even have a friend who has 8 trophies online and has a little online battle with someone who has 45 trophies (I know, not fair). He's faced him now 3 times in the 3rd and final round the past 2 weeks, lol.

My general idea is that people like Ikoria limited.
People who play online and irl might have different opinions as they are likely to be very different groups. I personally don't do battlecrusier mtg. Limited is my thing- back when they introduced planeswalker point garbage I think I had the 4th or 5th most FNM pwps in the UK (for some reason FNM pwps were a feature of the early system), and they were all from weekly drafts and I have a decade more weekly drafts on top, sadly no longer FNMs. Like a few of my kind, I won't touch MTGA with a barge pole, although I have wondered how long I will draft for with all the extra practice people get on MTGA.
From what I have read, the best deck is pretty clear, which tends to give poor draft experiences. Either way, it is going to be hard to fairly judge a set's popularity in these times. Of course when I said draft, I meant the sales of draft boosters, not the act of drafting. Collector booster sales are high, but the EV of a draft box is ludicrously low.

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Post by drmarkb » 1 year ago

On Legacy, fast combo is not fast very often, unless paired against other fast combo. Otherwise it is slowed down by all the prison or control elements in aggro and fair decks, trying to stick a show and tell or whatever. Source- I own a lot of Legacy decks. I play Legacy a lot, and most of my matches vs fast combo go near to time.....

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

@True-Name Nemesis Won't quote the whole post for the sake of saving space.

The context of my initial post was about "degeneracy" in Modern versus Legacy and Vintage, so my responses were in that context.

In Legacy ALL combo decks can win on T1, with the exception of Infect, Elves and Cloudpost Ramp. T3 might be more common, but not for lack of ability. Still, plenty -if not all of them- can win through disruption , even in those first couple of turns. In Modern the T4 rule isn't about winning through disruption, rather consistent ability to win by T4. True, how prone you are to disruption matters, but not as mach as consistency.

By that metric, Legacy is far worse, since it not only has more combo decks, but also (most of) these can win on T1-T2 and with their own disruption/protection. OmniTell plays FoW, Storm, Reanimator, Hogaak/Dredge and Depths play discard spells, Infect plays both counters and protection. And all of them can win through disruption, either by stripping it away or brute forcing, in the first few turns. For a brief time there was Breach and Gyruda, but they're gone now.

Then there's Eldrazi.

I have no problem with the above- these decks have the right to exist after all, but to say that Modern is worse than Legacy is absurd. Yes Modern is more linear than Legacy, but Legacy has been masking its "degeneracy" by not being as iterated as Modern as a format, by having huge card availability issues and by having almost no competitive events going for it.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
That aside, lumping all the combo decks together like you did is being disingenuous seeing as how many of the combo decks in the list are not 'fast' by Legacy standards, or if they are, they are extremely fragile.
I've said my piece about this above, but again all of the combo decks in the breakdown by mtgtop8 can win by T2, that is fast -even by your definition. Some are more consistent, some can even win on T1.
For me Legacy is a T2 format, since that's the turn combo decks must be able to win to pre-empt significant disruption by other decks (be that counters, discard, chalice or what have you).

Legacy has it worse when compared to Modern in what category people have often claimed to be "degenerate", which is my point and is what started this particular argument.
drmarkb wrote:
1 year ago
On Legacy, fast combo is not fast very often, unless paired against other fast combo. Otherwise it is slowed down by all the prison or control elements in aggro and fair decks, trying to stick a show and tell or whatever. Source- I own a lot of Legacy decks. I play Legacy a lot, and most of my matches vs fast combo go near to time.....
From my experience, Combo or other prison decks are not as prevalent in paper because people at my store more ore less Rule 0 them out, so the meta (of 8 people...) is mostly interactive magic, or random decks people decide to bring and a die hard Storm player. Which kinda supports my point of not truly seeing the real best decks in Legacy.

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Post by True-Name Nemesis » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
In Legacy ALL combo decks can win on T1, with the exception of Infect, Elves and Cloudpost Ramp. T3 might be more common, but not for lack of ability. Still, plenty -if not all of them- can win through disruption , even in those first couple of turns. In Modern the T4 rule isn't about winning through disruption, rather consistent ability to win by T4. True, how prone you are to disruption matters, but not as mach as consistency.
The top tier combo decks yes fully agreed, a lot of them can combo on turn 1 with some consistency, most definitely can combo on turn 2 very consistently, and all of can definitely combo through disruption on turn 3. These are the Storm, SNS, Reanimators. This is why they are the most played, most powerful and popular combo decks. And I think these decks are generally what comes to mind as the poster boys of Legacy combo decks.

I will also point out among the combo decks some require a combat step, these are the Dark Depths/ infects etc. These are essentially combos that are spread out over 2 turns. Opening up more windows of interaction. Elves probably falls in here as well due to the requirement of needing creatures to stick on the board over a few turns.

And some other combo decks that require high cmc engine pieces to stick to go off. Food Chain and Aluren for example are a 3CMC and 4CMC Enchantment respectively. These are definitely not going off before turn 3.

Other than that, completely agreed, combo in legacy is turn 2 consistently without disruption.

That said, by my count the very top tier of speed+resilience accounts for about 12-20% (depending on what you include, for me the base line is Storm + SNS + reanimator) of the overall Legacy meta.

Going back to the point about fast combo decks, with my defined parameters of what constitutes as fast combo.
True-Name Nemesis wrote:
1 year ago
Turn 3 is the standard combo turn in Legacy, and while the combo decks in Legacy are strong and resilient, the top tier combo decks with the exception of BR reanimator tend to not be able to go off both safely and consistently before turn 3 unless you are 100% certain that it's safe based on game knowledge
In context of Legacy as a whole, if 20% of combo decks can go off consistently on turn 2 or turn 3 through disruption. To me that is not a large portion of the meta, but this is personal and opinions may vary. But i definitely do not think that this counts as the largest part of the meta.

But sure, point taken, we can agree to disagree here.

To dip my toes into the 'degenerate' conversation.

I personally do not think fast combo is degenerate in Legacy. After all, these decks are constantly being kept in check outside of the most egregious (breach comes to mind). In context of the Legacy format, interactive blue decks are still king. If whatever passable interaction Legacy has is supposedly "hiding its degeneracy", then imo it's doing a pretty damn good job of it and should continue to do so. When island+go can represent up to 3 layers of interaction for a combo deck to think about, I really have no complaints about this. Again to reiterate my personal opinion, I think Legacy has plenty of problems, fast combo is not one of them. As Legacy players, the expectation when we buy into the format is that we expect to lose games sometimes without even taking a turn, but the majority of interactive blue mirrors makes up for that adequately.

As for Modern, I really don't have any opinion on how degenerate it is.

For me the problems for each format are relatively distinct. And using the combo kill turn of the combo decks to compare the formats don't do justice to either. The nuances of each format just make it so that 'degenerate' comparisons between the 2 are just not fair.

For example, companions aside, Legacy has been facing a sort of mini-identity crisis where mana-denial strategies that have been a pillar of the format for years have been rendered impotent by Astrolabe enabling basic land heavy 4-5c mana bases. This is a much bigger issue than turn 1 or turn 2 combo kills.

Whereas in Modern, such strategies have never been consistently good and as such the impact of Astrolabe is not felt the same way. It's still a very powerful card in Modern but it had a bigger negative impact in Legacy.

W6 is fine in Modern, it's banned in Legacy.
Oko is fine in Legacy, It's banned in Modern.

These are where the nuances of each format come into play.

Loosely paraphrasing here: Opinions such as "Legacy is more degenerate because there are more combo decks and they go off 2 turns earlier un-disrupted" or any such blanket statements comparing Legacy and Modern simply don't prove anything.

There's simply no point in comparing the 2, the expectations, characteristics and nuances of each format too different.

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

Different formats are different. True, obviously.

Which other format is permitted to be unhealthy, for longer periods, than the rest?

All formats embrace levels of degeneracy, but if you wish to play a degenerate (as per my own definition of 1 card, 1 land, no free spells) competitive and constructed deck, for the longest period of time, with the least number of road blocks in your way (Control/Tempo/Prison).

Where do you do it?

Thats the question here.
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Post by th33l3x » 1 year ago

So I jammed 10 Grixis Delver matches today and the deck still seems gas. Went 9-1. Lurrus is still completely free as a companion, but I dropped Bauble in the main for a 4th Serum Visions, 2nd Kolaghan's command and 3rd and 4th Snapcaster Mage.

This made me realize that

1) Sprite Dragon has improved the deck much more than Lurrus did, they just happened to come out in the same set so Lurrus got all the credit. Having 8 efficient, evasive tempo threats is the bread and butter for this deck.

2) There is a real cost to playing Mishra's Bauble. Its an abysmal topdeck and doesn't actually do any filtering. The fetchland trick is cute but does very little in practice. And with t3 Lurrus-Bauble gone, I'm pretty sure it's just not worth it.

Overall the deck feels a tad less explosive because Dragon into Bauble has some serious damage output on its own. Pumping Dragon before its 1st attack on t2 simply means +1 damage per attack, which can add up to a whole turn.

But omitting Bauble in favour of Serum Visions and 3 more "curve-toppers" in Snap+Kolaghan's feels correct.

Observations on companions:

1) I faced Yorion 2 times, once in Bant Snow Control, once in Temur Scapeshift. And Yorion is painfully slow. 3cmc at sorcery speed just to put it in their hand was backbreaking against a tempo deck such as Grixis Delver. Tbh I'm not at all sure Bant Control will stick with Yorion. They might just revert to their more streamlined 60card version. Yorion will probably stay in UGx Growth Spiral decks because the extra 3 is less of an issue there. All in all, the rules change makes it 100% irrelevant in any kind of fast matchup. If you get to cast Yorion for 8cmc all in all, you've won anyway. Its most likely still good vs stuff like Jund / Control matchups.

2) I think I only cast Lurrus 3-4 times in all my matches, which is very little for about 25 games. It certainly contributed to me winning 2-3 of those

The fact remains that there is just NO cost whatsoever for some decks to run Lurrus. Lurrus is still an 8th card that the other deck doesnt have. And although the advantage gained is far smaller now, that doesnt mean it makes more sense.

So 2 net positives from all this: 1) Grixis Delver still feels like a very very good deck and is incredibly fun to pilot, 2) the companion nerf is no joke. The cards have become notably worse.

It'll be interesting to see where the metagame settles. How far it reverts back to Uro-Veil meta, and which decks manage to stick around. What happens to Rx Prowess? Anybody have a guess? Will it revert back to mono-red Reveler? Are the Rw/Rb versions just strictly better and people just didnt realize it? Because Lurrus sure as hell has gotten WAAYYY worse in that deck. Paying 3cmc on your main phase and than ANOTHER 3cmc is something that completely goes against Prowess' game plan. It's better than doing nothing, but is it better than casting a Bedlam Reveler ? My suspicion is no.

So hypothetically, if these innitial observations are right, companions might be (partially) dropped from 1) Bant Control, 2) Rx Prowess, 3) Jund. I have no idea how good it is in Devoted Devastation, but that deck gave up quite a few 3drops to accomodate Lurrus, so I imagine it'll be a close call betwenn Lurrus and those 3drops as well.

That's the 4 most popular companion decks right there.

Jegantha is still completely free in Tron, obviously, that deck gives zero funns about the rules update.

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

th33l3x wrote:
1 year ago
So I jammed 10 Grixis Delver matches today and the deck still seems gas. Went 9-1. Lurrus is still completely free as a companion, but I dropped Bauble in the main for a 4th Serum Visions, 2nd Kolaghan's command and 3rd and 4th Snapcaster Mage.

This made me realize that

1) Sprite Dragon has improved the deck much more than Lurrus did, they just happened to come out in the same set so Lurrus got all the credit. Having 8 efficient, evasive tempo threats is the bread and butter for this deck.

2) There is a real cost to playing Mishra's Bauble. Its an abysmal topdeck and doesn't actually do any filtering. The fetchland trick is cute but does very little in practice. And with t3 Lurrus-Bauble gone, I'm pretty sure it's just not worth it.

Overall the deck feels a tad less explosive because Dragon into Bauble has some serious damage output on its own. Pumping Dragon before its 1st attack on t2 simply means +1 damage per attack, which can add up to a whole turn.

But omitting Bauble in favour of Serum Visions and 3 more "curve-toppers" in Snap+Kolaghan's feels correct.
As someone who's played a lot of Grixis Delver myself, this seems right. Bauble is a nonbo with pretty much everything except Sprite/Lurrus and I hated the idea of even trying it (which is why I sold my Baubles instead of playing it). But Sprite seems good no matter what, Bauble or not.

What's your list?

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

th33l3x wrote:
1 year ago
It'll be interesting to see where the metagame settles. How far it reverts back to Uro-Veil meta, and which decks manage to stick around. What happens to Rx Prowess? Anybody have a guess? Will it revert back to mono-red Reveler? Are the Rw/Rb versions just strictly better and people just didnt realize it? Because Lurrus sure as hell has gotten WAAYYY worse in that deck. Paying 3cmc on your main phase and than ANOTHER 3cmc is something that completely goes against Prowess' game plan. It's better than doing nothing, but is it better than casting a Bedlam Reveler ? My suspicion is no.
I feel like this is correct. Its too punishing.

I wonder if these cards just go into the Main deck, but I'm not sure its even worth it. The free always available 8th card was just too good, but now the cost is too high.
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