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

blkdemonight
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Post by blkdemonight » 1 year ago

Wouldn't be surprised if Wizards inconsistencies with ban lists metrics might have to do with them not bothering to keep things consistent. When it comes to PR with cards like Nexus of Fate i.e. At one point they wouldn't ban it for standard outright but removed from a queue of Arena to minimize its prevalence ( and they also replaced it with Omniscience when you bought the applicable Core Set bundle). They tried to justify the card design as a commander bomb promo that ended up being Standard staple for blue decks with a long term game plan. Forward to now they banned it Historic format while claiming its has fans while knowing beforehand the card was designed not to let opponents be able to play magic.

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Post by Ulka » 1 year ago

Due to the volume of reports and the fact we had several users flaming and trolling each other we will be keeping this thread closed for a day or two to provide time for users to cooldown. I am going to take this time to post the site rules below on flaming and trolling. I expect everyone to review them prior to posting.

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Post by Ulka » 1 year ago

I have unlocked the thread. Any violations of the forum rules will be moderated accordingly. If you all continue to flaming, trolling or enact other behaviors that violate the forum rules, I will be forced to lock the thread for a great time period.
This is your warning to remember that there is enough aggression in the world already and it will not be tolerated here.

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Post by Bearscape » 1 year ago

Unban twin lol
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Post by Mtgthewary » 1 year ago

Let's talk about, lolol
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Post by ThatStoryTeller » 1 year ago

So Bryan of the Arena Decklists podcast believes that the astrolabe ban was the correct ban but may have been too early as we hadnt seen the counterplay rise to contend with the simic value midrange piles, and while I dont necessarily agree with the idea of "too early", I can see evidence of people shifting to big mana in the MTGO events, and now I am quite curious as to if he is onto something. I selfishly prefer the astrolabe ban as a 2 color blue deck and see it as a potential benefit to the format. But it seems like we're heading back to big mana in the crosshairs somewhat too soon. I admit this may be the acceleration of the digital space amid a pandemic also

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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 1 year ago

ThatStoryTeller wrote:
1 year ago
So Bryan of the Arena Decklists podcast believes that the astrolabe ban was the correct ban but may have been too early as we hadnt seen the counterplay rise to contend with the simic value midrange piles, and while I dont necessarily agree with the idea of "too early", I can see evidence of people shifting to big mana in the MTGO events, and now I am quite curious as to if he is onto something. I selfishly prefer the astrolabe ban as a 2 color blue deck and see it as a potential benefit to the format. But it seems like we're heading back to big mana in the crosshairs somewhat too soon. I admit this may be the acceleration of the digital space amid a pandemic also
As much as I say that I don't think anything should be banned from Tron, I have seen recent stats that have shown E Tron to be quite the force. I also strongly believe that Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath is going to be banned before 2021. The Snow decks seem to have lost very little and I don't think anything from Tron can be banned as long as Double Masters is in print.

I hate to talk about bans so much, but it seems like WotC really doesn't want to do any unbans in the near future.
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blkdemonight
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Post by blkdemonight » 1 year ago

Considering Expedition Map got banned in Pauper, would that happen eventually in Modern as well?

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Post by ktkenshinx » 1 year ago

blkdemonight wrote:
1 year ago
Considering Expedition Map got banned in Pauper, would that happen eventually in Modern as well?
I wouldn't read too much into the banning in and of itself because Pauper is a very different format with a weird mix of more powerful and less powerful answers/threats and specific deckbuilding rules. It's not like Legacy where if a card is bannable in Legacy and legal in Modern, it's probably also bannable/broken in Modern too. That said, it is worth looking at the actual ban justification itself to see if it's translatable to Modern. In this case, it does not appear to be. Tron decks appear to have occupied a really alarming share of the metagame at certain points: 25% per the ban article. Modern Tron has never approached that kind of level and any deck which exceeded 20% for any longer than a 2-3 week period has almost inevitably faced a ban, so I don't think that bar is particularly applicable. Wizards also cited a more ambiguous "community feedback" element which may be related to their later observations about "negative effects in terms of repetitive game play, recursive play patterns and lock states." Assuming the community feedback was related to those things, this could certainly apply to Modern Tron (sans the "lock states" element), but could also probably apply to a ton of decks. I read this as a distant secondary consideration after the much more glaring 25% metagame share citation, which appears to be the primary trigger for a Tron-aimed ban.

Given Tron's 2020 share, which has never exceeded a collective 10%-12% in any period I have been tracking, Pauper's Map ban does not seem like a Modern precedent. If anything, it just reinforces that decks can't be eating up these kind of monstrous 25% shares which historically broken decks tend to post. Tron remains just another powerful Modern deck in the broad Modern ecosystem, despite what some vocal, primarily interactive/midrange/control players like to protest.
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Post by Mtgthewary » 1 year ago

Yes! I believe it could be a test too. If pauper tron survive, expedition will go in modern too. Maybe not this year, but 2021 it will happen.

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

Please please please don't ban expedition map in Modern..... There's no need for it. It was already lame enough they banned Lattice because it was "unfun".

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Post by Ym1r » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
The Snow decks seem to have lost very little
I want to believe this, because I do love my Bant/Sultai snow decks but I have yet to see concrete evidence of this (granted it is early). Yes you see the occasional 5-0 in the leagues and a 4-1/3-2 result in prelims, but I haven't seen any signs of dominance of Snow decks. They seem to have lost quite a bit from their consistency. Maybe playing Astrolabe-less lists is just wrong and they need a different build (e.g. fall more on the Wilderness reclamation plan) but I am not sure we are anywhere near optimality yet.
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Post by Mapccu » 1 year ago

Problem with snow decks is that labe just made them more consistent, they can still curve out with perfect mana for their hand and play essentially the same way and 5-0 a league. The guts of the deck are just as good, so I expect it to keep seeing results in the league results. We don't have access to data to let us know the number of occurrences to see the actual impact of the ban.

What were less able to gauge is if that deck can hold those win rates over a larger tournament because of the pandemic. Without magic fests, the SCG circuit, etc to look towards we don't know if the deck can make 14 rounds or if it fails to its inconsistent mana base now.

Not sure when we'll have access to that level of data for modern again to be honest.

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Post by ktkenshinx » 1 year ago

Mtgthewary wrote:
1 year ago
Yes! I believe it could be a test too. If pauper tron survive, expedition will go in modern too. Maybe not this year, but 2021 it will happen.
You still have not addressed the most important contributor to the Map ban: Tron remaining in the 25% prevalence range in Pauper metagames. Tron isn't even half of that in Modern and hasn't approached half of that for basically all of 2020. Wizards has been very consistent with its 2019 and 2020 Modern bans, basing virtually all of them (Lattice being a giant exception) on documented prevalence and win-rate metrics. I know there remains a vocal, entrenched, and unwavering minority of players who continue to hate on Tron, but a Tron-aimed ban is simply not justified by any known metrics at this time. I know CFP might say that Wizards can just make up metrics whenever they want to fire off a ban, but as I will always say, this is completely undermined by our extreme consistency in predicting 2019/2020 bans. If Wizards was just making up ban criteria, we'd see far more unpredictable bans.

I do believe that if Tron ever did push into the 20%+ range of Modern then Map would be a ban that is on the table to tone it down. But until that happens, identifying Tron ban targets or calling for/suggesting Tron elements are bannable is itself ban mania. It is creating a ban issue where none exists. Modern has so many other talking points right now, chief among them Wizards' silence on whether or not it will come to Arena. Talking about a Tron ban right now is like identifying closed movie theaters as the biggest problem America is currently faces. It completely misses the forest for a single shrub.
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Post by Mtgthewary » 1 year ago

Unfun... This is the key. I strongly believe you underestimate this word still after they talked several times about bevore, like kci ban or Lattice. You still try to use data only and so you can't see your mistake. data is proven not the only important point. Cfb understood this in the meantime. It's not banmania, it's common fact now. By the way, after so many bans in the last 2 years saying banmania is funny. I call it new reality

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

Mtgthewary wrote:
1 year ago
Unfun... This is the key. I strongly believe you underestimate this word still after they talked several times about bevore, like kci ban or Lattice. You still try to use data only and so you can't see your mistake. data is proven not the only important point. Cfb understood this in the meantime. It's not banmania, it's common fact now. By the way, after so many bans in the last 2 years saying banmania is funny. I call it new reality
But what if somebody finds tron "fun"? Banning something from tron now is a waste of time. People are just going to jam hate into their sideboards and take care of them when tron decks pop up more.

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Post by drmarkb » 1 year ago

The lattice ban was awful.
Fun is subjective.
Lattice is fine, the Karn lock inescapable or not, obvious either way if someone has won with it. It should be no different to someone playing Twin, Storm or Pod and saying 'yeah you got it' when a combo starts. I mean if they killed Mindslaver for the same reason I might get it, but a slaver lock us worse.
If Tron is too powerful with Karn and Lattice, then it is too powerful full stop.

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

I get that, I just mean it's not broken now and a lot of people enjoy playing tron decks. So banning anything from it again without the statistical merits ktk is talking about would be completely out of the blue and unnecessary.
Modern just had a ban that's shaking things up a bit right now. Just wait a couple of weeks and see how things unfold before people start yelling for more bans.
The whole "ban because it's not fun" merit is insanely dangerous to the game as a whole. There will always be cards/decks people don't like, but other people do. So who's more right?
"But there are no major events in the near future!", so what, it's the world we live in now, let's just play however we can, have fun and see where things go in the coming weeks with what we have.

I'm really positive about modern these days even with how things could be in the future.
Last edited by Simto 1 year ago, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Mtgthewary » 1 year ago

I don't say ban something, i only say time where people should looke 95% on data only is over. New reality is another one, like it or not and we need to evaluate this new facts more if we talk about bannings.

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Post by Ed06288 » 1 year ago

E-Tron was competitive with Oko around, as well as the snow variants. I'm convinced that eldrazi temple, more so than tron lands or expedition map, are the problem.

These double masters reprints are lazy. I'm seeing a lot of cards from previous masters sets. Where is Kozilek, butcher of truth. Or Blackcleave cliffs? Or Ad-Nauseam? It's possible I'm not seeing the business side of things. Maybe stuff like sundering titan sells really well to casuals and larger stores can't keep it in stock.

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Post by Guardman » 1 year ago

Ed06288 wrote:
1 year ago
E-Tron was competitive with Oko around, as well as the snow variants. I'm convinced that eldrazi temple, more so than tron lands or expedition map, are the problem.
My LGS was lousy with EldraziTron and Mono-G Tron, making up anywhere from 50 to 66% of all decks on any given night, so I've got a ton of experience facing off against both. And you are 100% correct. Tron in E-Tron, is very powerful and nice to have, but not necessary like in Mono-G Tron. Eldrazi Temple on the other hand is what makes the deck tick. It is very easy for them to put out a turn 3 Thought-Knot Seer with it. I've even played a few games where they have two Eldrazi Temples in their opening hand. Those games are extremely hard to win without a bit of luck.

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

Mtgthewary wrote:
1 year ago
i only say time where people should looke 95% on data only is ove
I disagree, but neither of us have any say anyway, so no need to discuss it any further hehe.

I'm kinda wishing they didn't ban astrolabe now if Tron is going to be the big bad guy now lol...

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Post by Mtgthewary » 1 year ago

There is a reason why eldrazi TRON works and green TRON... It's not temple being in both. It's tronlands and how you can find this to often easy? Expedition map... Noone plays eldrazi without tron, except me, lol

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Post by Mapccu » 1 year ago

Losing to colorless haymakers past t4 is about the same as losing to Grapeshot or Temur Battle Rage+Death's Shadow on the same clock (or a myriad of other winning board states that can assemble in modern in that timeframe).

I may be the minority here but I think Tron is fine, I really do. There really isn't anything insanely consistent or insane that they're doing. I honestly don't have to sweat anything scary hitting the board before t3 except Thought-Knot Seer and that's t2 with a crazy good opener (<10% with hyper geometric to hit two temples and a seer in opening 7).

It's frustrating to see the power level of those cards but honestly I could just run mono green elves and ramp out the same garbage at roughly the same pace.

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Post by ktkenshinx » 1 year ago

Mtgthewary wrote:
1 year ago
Unfun... This is the key. I strongly believe you underestimate this word still after they talked several times about bevore, like kci ban or Lattice. You still try to use data only and so you can't see your mistake. data is proven not the only important point. Cfb understood this in the meantime. It's not banmania, it's common fact now. By the way, after so many bans in the last 2 years saying banmania is funny. I call it new reality
There have been xx bans in Modern since early 2019. Literally every single one of them but Lattice mentioned MWP and/or prevalence before mentioning "fun" at all. Most didn't even use the word.

KCI: MWP and GP conversion - "the primary reasons for banning a card from the Ironworks deck are its raw win rate and high GP Top 8 conversion rate, we also considered its highly polarized Game 1 (pre-sideboard) win rate, sometimes long turn length, and difficult rules interactions as secondary factors." Secondarily, fun - "We're sensitive to community feedback that the combination of polarized matchups, complex interactions, and long turns can lead to unenjoyable gameplay and viewing experiences."

Bridge: MWP, speed, matchup spectrum data - "From our data gathered through Magic Online, this deck has shown to have a high overall win rate, fast wins, and few unfavorable matches. "

Hogaak: MWP and prevalence - "Since then, the results of Mythic Championship IV in Barcelona, several Grands Prix, and other tournaments have shown that Hogaak continues to have a high win rate and oppressive effect on the metagame. "

Looting: MWP and prevalence - "Over the past year, graveyard-based strategies have been occupying a large portion of the Modern metagame, to the point where deck-building diversity is being suppressed" and "By our data gathered from Magic Online and tabletop tournament results, over the past year the winningest Modern deck at any given point in time has usually been a Faithless Looting deck."

Opal: MWP and prevalence - "decks using Urza, Lord High Artificer have risen to the top of competitive Modern, earning the most 5-0 trophies in Magic Online league play and maintaining a non-mirror match win percentage of more than 55%. These decks also have a winning matchup against nine of the other ten most popular competitive decks, indicating an inability of the metagame to adjust on its own...Our data indicates that removing Oko alone would still leave Urza decks in a dominant position in the metagame. We considered options that would further weaken Urza-based artifact decks, while still allowing for decks based around that general strategy. Ultimately, we determined that banning Mox Opal was the correct option."

Oko: MWP and prevalence - "decks using Urza, Lord High Artificer have risen to the top of competitive Modern, earning the most 5-0 trophies in Magic Online league play and maintaining a non-mirror match win percentage of more than 55%. These decks also have a winning matchup against nine of the other ten most popular competitive decks, indicating an inability of the metagame to adjust on its own...Oko, Thief of Crowns has become the most played card in competitive Modern, with an inclusion rate approaching 40% of decks in recent league play and tabletop tournaments. In additional to having a high overall power level, Oko has proven to reduce metagame diversity and diversity of game play patterns in Modern."

Lattice: the one true "fun" ban in contemporary Modern - "While the primary motivation for this last change is the unfun play pattern, we also intend for this to be a small but meaningful balance change to Eldrazi and other Tron decks."

Once Upon a Time: MWP and prevalence - "Over the past months, Once Upon a Time has become one of the most played cards in Modern, contributing to several of the most popular and highest winning decks. The consistency provided by Once Upon a Time allows these decks to much more reliably enact their early-game plan compared to other archetypes in the metagame, leading to less divergent gameplay paths."

Astrolabe: MWP and prevalence - "Over the past several months of Modern's metagame, we have seen a rise in popularity and win rate of multicolor decks using Arcum's Astrolabe, with some variants approaching 55% non-mirror match win rate... In short, Arcum's Astrolabe adds too much to these decks for too little cost, resulting in win rates that are unhealthy and unsustainable for the metagame."

Bans from even other formats read the same, with tons of references to that 55%+ win rate cutoff and overall prevalence numbers. But even if we just look at Modern, there is a clear, established pattern that hard MWP and prevalence numbers continue to drive bans. "Fun" was only the primary factor in one ban, and a distant second in another. It is much less common than you probably think (or maybe want to believe). I do not deny Wizards will probably base future ban decisions off the fun factor. They did it with Aetherworks Marvel in 2017 and they did it with Lattice in 2020; they'll definitely do it again. But MWP and prevalence will remain the gold standards to predict and call for bans.

As for the comment about "ban mania," I specified my definition of this term. "Ban mania" does not mean calling for bans in and of itself. Wizards has completely forgotten how to balance this game and/or no longer cares to try, which has required an unprecedented and embarrassing number of multi-format bans for 1.5+ years. It will probably continue to require bans and we should continue to call for bans. "Ban mania" is specifically when someone takes a deck, often one they personally dislike, and then without exploring any data frames that deck as a bannable problem. Calling for legitimate bans on legitimate Wizards %$#% ups is good. Calling for personal grudge bans without even trying to acknowledge the lack of data for that ban is ban mania.
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