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

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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

I think MAYBE wotc is finally wising up with latest round of bans. Here is the problem:

1. WOTC needs to develop powerful broken cards to keep standard and arena sets fun and fresh in order to sell packs
2. These pushed cards can and will break eternal formats

Wotc just needs to accept that new cards may very well create unhealthy situations in their eternal formats. From here on out when they release a new set they should give all the eternal formats the "Pioneer treatment" where they would adjust the banlist as needed to foster a healthy format.

Now will they do that? Hell no. But they may at least wise up to the fact that they will be needed tons more bans as new cards are printed going forward.
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Post by boltsnapbolt_ » 8 months ago

The recent Modern ban announcement has some positives(we all know about them, Uro and FOTD), but some big fails also.

Subject no.1 : A case about SSG banning - heavily nerfing lower tier decks and setting a dangerous precedent.
I had just bought into Goryo's. Let me begin with this statement. I know this post isn't going to be objective. I thought that "since they banned looting, this deck is now safe". So, please, bear with me, since I took my time into trying to digest this decision and didn't post out of a hurry during the first day.So, SSG was a part of many fast kills. That card was not what most people perceive as "normal magic". That card was not what most people perceive as "fun" magic. But this is where we got to? Wizards banning cards that are "unfun" according to their criteria?

The SSG banning is a banning that targeted lower tier decks, for the first time in the history of Modern. And that's worrying as hell. Targeting Mono red prison, Neobrand, Ad Nauseam, Goryo's Vengeance while THEY DID ban tibalt's trickery at the same time, a fine decision(thus eliminating the tier 1 deck)? I really don't get it. So, they annihilated the tier 1 deck completely and then they heavily nerfed all the lower tier decks as well. I know those decks are not the most fun to play against, but really? I also used to play Mardu Pyromancer, so I am not a sole combo player. And I had looting banned before. But having two non-tier 1 decks banned is too much. I get Looting. I really get it, it was part of 2 or 3 tier 0 options. But SSG was part of 3 or 4 tier 3 options and INCREASED diversity, not decreased it. I also get that many of you don't like it and I respect that totally.

I also think playing in a format, where it has no identity is something appaling to me. Legacy has brainstorm, FOW, daze, Pioneer has the identity of "playing with the recent standard cards", Vintage has the P9. Modern has nothing and at this point, it's not that exciting to be playing for Modern.

That's all. Sad to go. I guess it's Pioneer time for me(since I also hate T3feri and that format banned it, so that's good news), so already dipped my toes into that format.

PS: I am sorry if I sound bitter. I am not that much. I am just baffled by their decision and I think it sets a terrible precedent!
Subject no2: Bannings happen on the basis of being unfun, not on the basis of data

Another post I found at reddit:
I've no qualm with SSG getting hit with a ban as long as there was enough data to back it up. I'm talking where hate in forms of hand disruption, counterspells & sideboard tech have no effect. This one felt completely preemptive on the basis of being "unfun" which is not a valid enough reason.

"Format warping"? Possible when FIRE design just wants to push their busted cards without a care of other formats. But even then, a combo deck in a top 32 now & then does not a format warper make. Games that end too early when the combo goes off is a problem when it happens on a CONSTANT basis but everyone likes to discount the failure rate of such decks. Variance is still part of the game last time I checked.

Again, I don't mind banning cards be they fast mana, rule abusing, tier 0 enabling, etc. as long as WotC gives proper objective reasoning with results based info. Don't use "fun" as the crux of a ban. If I have fun playing combo, land destruction or prison, why should I be told that's not the right way to play because others don't like it?
This ban is a terrible ban, in my opinion and just makes all combo players turn away from the format. Wizards iis signaling that "if you are a combo player at heart, Modern is not for you" with that decision. Not only did they ban the premier Tier 1 deck that played SSG with banning Tibalt's trickery itself, they also banned Simian Spirit Guide on top of that. In my eyes, if you have already banned the Tier 1 deck, it absolutely makes no sense banning SSG on top of that. Many people I know were playing the already nerfed with Looting Goryos, Ad Nauseam, mono red prison and other lower tier combo decks.

Subject no.3: Mystic Sanctuary is another terrible modern banning.

What's with all the need to totally annihilate control decks from modern? I know, control was never supposed to be running Green, it was never supposed to run cards like Uro or Field of the dead(but it did). But even if it was not supposed to play such cards, it was supposed to play cards like Mystic Sanctuary. Mystic Sanctuary is a card that also helps lower tier decks. One of my decks was UR stuff: UR Breach, UR Moon, UR Control. Those decks also got hit by accident. This is terrible for the format.
Those decks now lost one good tool and they have to face more Tron and face cards like Veil of summer and Teferi, Time Raveler on the opposition.
Really sad for the control players overall and especially heavily nerfs the UR tier 3-4 variants.

Subject no.4: Modern is establishing itself as the format where you fear for banning anything.

That said, I already sold off a lot of stuff(and I had like A LOT of stuff to sell).

Subject no.5: Modern is the format where Veil of summer and Teferi, Time Raveler will forever be legal.
That's also another fail from the recent announcement.

Subject no.6: Modern remains a format with no identity at all.
Legacy has Brainstorm, FOW, Vintage has P9, Pioneer has the feature of having recent standard cards and decks being able to be legal and the midrange/fair format. Modern is....whatever.

A terrible, terrible announcement overall(whilst Uro and FOTD getting the axe was long needed and it was about time)

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Post by drmarkb » 8 months ago

Modern has never had identity beyond being the place where everyone went who had no other choice.
It has become a ban fest, partly due to wotc Fire policy but partly due to an audience wanting different things. Radically different.
I don't want to play with people who think T3feri should be banned, for example, just because they don't like being unable to control the game with counters. On the other hand I don't want to play with people who want to ban Blood Moon because they don't want to put enough basics in their good stuff deck. Ditto people who moan about Ensnaring Bridge or counterspells. In other words if someone is feeling locked out because of an action an opponent took- excellent. Part of the game. Get over it, mtg is for me about 'things that stop the opponent'. Others feel exactly the opposite, and crave interaction- but again for some people that must be stack based whilst for others it is all about creatures and combat. One person's interactive fun game is another's grindy mid range 'good stuff' nightmare. When people want interaction it is normally of a specific type. Some players hate glass cannon fast combo, some love it. Modern has a diverse audience who want radically different things.

For years these players were forced under one roof but Pioneer changed that, as did historic.
Financially, Modern is awful. I have said repeatedly. Legacy RL is the place to have had your money. If you bought a dual two year ago it has doubled twice. Your Modern staples have had a 50 pc min hair cut. The bannings make it worse. Sadly for those who have kept them the barrier to swapping formats is huge if you want Legacy, but it is tiny for Pioneer. Modern I think is an online format forward. With a diverse audience, no.identity, EDH players being catered for in design, aggressive reprints that nerf some prices but not all, it is too much to ask people to invest 500 to 800 dollars in a deck whose key pieces can crash in price and where bans can be expected regularly. They will never reprint enough to make the format as cheap as standard, but your 60 dollar rare could be 15 next week.

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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

boltsnapbolt_ wrote:
8 months ago
This ban is a terrible ban, in my opinion and just makes all combo players turn away from the format.
Hate to break it to you, but this is good news for a large percentage of people who want to have a fun / fair game of MTG. WHen combo decks "work" you are trying to win a game of solitaire. Meanwhile the other person is desperately trying to interact with you on some level that can meaningfully impact you. It probably won't work without sideboard help.

Does that sound like a jolly good time or what?!
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
boltsnapbolt_ wrote:
8 months ago
This ban is a terrible ban, in my opinion and just makes all combo players turn away from the format.
Hate to break it to you, but this is good news for a large percentage of people who want to have a fun / fair game of MTG. WHen combo decks "work" you are trying to win a game of solitaire. Meanwhile the other person is desperately trying to interact with you on some level that can meaningfully impact you. It probably won't work without sideboard help.

Does that sound like a jolly good time or what?!
Combo is an important archetype in Magic. Combo players also feel the same way about something like Infect, trying to turn 1 Glistener Elf, turn 2 pump it for at least 9 to add to its current power. You can't tell me that an Infect player is actively trying to interact with you.

The main issue with Combo is this.
1. In this example, Storm does nothing but Opt/Serum Visions for the first 3 turns. Goes off and kills you on turn 4.
2. Infect play Glistener Elf. You play Triome tapped. They kill you.
3. Control player weathers the early storm, then plays a Teferi, Hero of Dom and then counters every ... single ... thing you play.
4. Prison deck plays a turn 2 Chalice of the Void on the play. You draw a 1 mana spell. Next turn you draw another 1 mana spell. You continue to draw this or a land for the next 9 turns.
5. Discard you, kill your creature, discard you twice more, Bloodbraid Elf into Liliana of the Veil. Super fun eh?

In the #1 scenario, everyone hates this. Therefore to help attract Modern players, we need bans to control this happening. In #2-5, everyone is super joyous and happy. Triome player is happy that he got to play his odd looking, alternate art, Triome on turn 1.

There is a way to play against Combo, unless it gets too good (like anything else like Eye of Ugin Eldrazi or Hogaak). But players do not want to put a single card against Combo, not to mention there's so many different combos. But then you can't make your deck super good against ALL aggro and ALL control either. It's all about what you want to hedge against. And players who get SO mad about combo should ask themselves a question, "have I tried to understand or even ... GASP ... play Combo to get a better understanding of it? Nope. Then you are in no position to complain. I hate Midrange and Aggro (to a lesser degree) with a passion. I have played them ... only for science of course.

*To the poster about the bans. Simian Spirit Guide was banned to run those Combo players out of Modern. It is in an attempt to attract players that didn't enjoy those. It's WotC's card game; they can do what they want. And they want to experiment with seeing Modern more fair right now, or at least less combo-centric since Amulet and Tron should still be damn good. (Prowess decks can keep them somewhat in check)
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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

@foodchain: In 2021 our options for entertainment are...vast. MTG offers a niche strategic fantasy chess poker experience that is unique. Despite being unique, the game is far from a consistent good time for the players who buy into it.

THis is a game that is often filled with frustration. Frustration be it from losing or poor deck performance is more palatable if feel as though you at least got a chance to play the game.

Combo players make sure that no one is playing magic. They aren't playing it, they are playing solitaire, and so consequently their opponents don't get to play it much either.

But combo players will do some crazy mental gymnastics to try to tell you why their solitaire needs to be part of a multiplayer game. They won't budge in their opinions, and I for one won't budge in mine.

Either way, WOTC has the final say about what kinds of decks they view to be healthy, and they have banned a lot of cards a combo hater like me agrees with for a change.
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
@foodchain: In 2021 our options for entertainment are...vast. MTG offers a niche strategic fantasy chess poker experience that is unique. Despite being unique, the game is far from a consistent good time for the players who buy into it.

THis is a game that is often filled with frustration. Frustration be it from losing or poor deck performance is more palatable if feel as though you at least got a chance to play the game.

Combo players make sure that no one is playing magic. They aren't playing it, they are playing solitaire, and so consequently their opponents don't get to play it much either.

But combo players will do some crazy mental gymnastics to try to tell you why their solitaire needs to be part of a multiplayer game. They won't budge in their opinions, and I for one won't budge in mine.

Either way, WOTC has the final say about what kinds of decks they view to be healthy, and they have banned a lot of cards a combo hater like me agrees with for a change.
The fact of the matter is that WotC has to ban some Combos. Why? Because every set that comes out introduces a new one. If there were no bans, Modern would have 100,000 Combo decks by now, simply because there are new ones introduced each set. (Sometimes they're not good enough of course.)

Yes, the game is filled with frustration. Modern seems to grasp at that a lot more than most formats though (even if other formats get it for a short time here and then like Inverter of Truths). If you do not play Black, you are playing solitaire, as it offers the best options in Thoughtseize and Fatal Push. Tell a D & T player that they are playing Solitaire.

Combo players do crazy mental gymnastics? There were MODO grinders, Pro Players, that went through that to justify to me why Lurrus (with no 3 mana to put in hand), Veil of Summer, and T3feri are all completely fine, but Splinter Twin was oppressive, lmao. Don't get it twisted; everyone goes through mental gymnastics to defend their deck. A game in which a player announced their Chalice of the Void counter trigger twice and then cast a 4 mana planeswalker to do whatever the f#ck it wants to do to win while the other player cast 2 spells, both countered by Chalice is also a game in which someone will go through mental gymnastics to describe their hard fought win.

But I agree completly with the last comment. WotC DOES have the last say and they agree for the reason of my very first paragraph. We can't have 2-3 new combos for every Modern legal set, right? That's no fun. It's fun having Control, Aggro, and Combo, the original archetypes, along with several hybrid archetypes. That's fun.
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Pre Modern - Do not own anymore
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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

Look you want to try and tell me your arent playing solitaire? You are. We all know you are, There's so few of us left we really don't have room for "lol watch me play solitaire" decks that make the meta unfun.
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Post by Wraithpk » 8 months ago

Just gonna comment on the last few posts:

For the guy who said that SSG was a targeted ban at lower tier decks: No it wasn't. Those decks took some unfortunate splash damage, but we literally just saw the danger in SSG that everyone knew was always there. These cascade Trickery/Tibalt decks became turn 2 kills instead of turn 3 because of SSG. Just to put that in perspective: the difference between turn 4 kills and turn 5 kills is a deck being arguable the best deck in the format (Splinter Twin), and being completely unplayable (Kiki Jiki combo). The difference between turn 2 and turn 3 is larger than the difference between turn 4 and 5.

SSG was always living on borrowed time, just like Mox Opal was. Eventually, something was going to break it and necessitate a ban, and it happened to be these cascade decks. Even though they banned Trickery and changed the rules for Cascade, SSG was still exposed for being a dangerous turbo-charger for combo decks. Yes, it made bad combo decks playable, but it would also always make good combo decks potentially broken for as long as it was legal.

As for this talk about combo: combo is totally fine with one caveat: It can't be too consistent. Take the old Grishoalbrand deck. Yeah, sometimes the deck would kill you on turn 2, but it wasn't very consistent at doing that, and sometimes they would just brick off even when they executed their combo. If they happen to have the nuts for 2 games out of 3, you just tip your cap to them, but if decks like that are consistently doing that, it's not fun anymore.
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Post by boltsnapbolt_ » 8 months ago

Wraithpk wrote:
8 months ago
but if decks like that are consistently doing that, it's not fun anymore.
That's the terrible logic WOTC has us used to nowadays. There are many thing I disagree with your post, basically I disagree with everything. But the most important thing is that you mentioned the word fun. I don't like Tron; I find it abusive and too consistent on the T3 Karn thing. Using that logic, Tron should also be nerfed.

Remember; SSG was not necessary for the cascade decks; if SSG alone was banned, those decks would still run rampan. It was the cascade cards that was the enabler. Since the rules got changed, and Tibalts trickery was banned, SSG if left unharmed could be totally fine in decks like Ad Nauseam, Grishoalbrand, and things like that.

What I most care about though is that since they find SSG unfun, they also found Mystic Sanctuary unfun. They did not only banned Goryos, AD Naus, etc, they also nerfed my Blue Moon deck to oblivion, because some people find it unfun! I alread tried out various UR stuff online. They are terrible with no Sanctuary...

In my opinion, every card that is deemed to be unfun by the playerbase is going to get banned from now on, solely for fun reasons:

Mystic Sanctuary: This land creates repetitive and noninteractive game states in the late game for relatively low deck-building cost. To promote more back and forth gameplay and interaction over win conditions, we're choosing to remove them.

While the overall win rate of the deck hasn't shown to be problematic, we believe it contributes to non-games that make Modern less fun to play. As the goal of this update is to shake up the metagame into a more fun spot, we're concerned that a continued metagame presence of Tibalt's Trickery decks would work against that goal. Therefore, we are banning Tibalt's Trickery in Modern.,

While the overall win rate of the deck hasn't shown to be problematic, we believe it contributes to non-games that make Modern less fun to play. As the goal of this update is to shake up the metagame into a more fun spot, we're concerned that a continued metagame presence of Tron/Prowess decks would work against that goal. Therefore, we are banning Expedition Map/Mishra's Bauble in Modern.

Using data to ban cards in magic has now gone extinct. Data is nowhere to be seen. Something deemed as unfun by some shady people in bannings is the new data.

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Post by The Fluff » 8 months ago

with all the bannings that happened the past 2 or 3 years.. modern feels like it is a "rotating format".

looking at previous posts. Adding my opinion, have sideboard cards to deal with combo, so it's a matter of luck. And I like playing against aggro and midrange decks. Control? I try to kill it fast with prowess.
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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

boltsnapbolt_ wrote:
8 months ago
Something deemed as unfun by some shady people in bannings is the new data.
Yep. It's called using common sense. If you have a bad apple in a barrel, you toss it. You don't let it rot all over the fair and good quality apples making the barrel as a whole crappier. Sure, some people can eat those rotten apples, some people even LOVE them. But WOTC is smart enough to realize that it's better to have a clean barrel of apples than to try and make the rotten apple eaters happy.
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Post by Albegas » 8 months ago

The Fluff wrote:
8 months ago
with all the bannings that happened the past 2 or 3 years.. modern feels like it is a "rotating format".
I'm pretty sure that as far as WotC is concerned, Modern does need to rotate. However, in a perfect world, it should be done via natural power creep as new sets are introduced. In other words, decks should slowly be replacing some of their older cards with newer cards to the point where as much as half of the nonlands have changed (Jund's a pretty good example), or newer decks should emerge that replace older decks with similar strategies entirely (ex. Humans replacing Merfolk).

Of course the problem is that in the last 2 or so years, we've seen some of the worst sets ever in terms of design mistakes. Standard itself has been a mess; prior to Kaldheim, there hadn't been that many cards banned in Standard since Urza or Mirrodin. Modern shouldn't have to rotate because of bans, but these design mistakes have rippled throughout the nonrotating formats and have forced WotC to keep banning cards to get the wheel of power creep going.

If Modern's going to get back to a format that naturally rotates with time, WotC needs to either introduce stronger safety valves into the format to protect against strategies that are harder to interact with like lands and spell-based combos, or they need to scrap their entire Play and Design philosophy. Or both, I won't be picky, but I honestly think that Modern actually has enough safety valves so long as combos can't reliably violate the T4 rule and so long as lands decks have to devote a lot of their resources in assembling the lands. What WotC needs to do is stop introducing poorly tested Mythic bombs into every set and stop thinking that it's OK to accidentally make a card broken because you can just ban it in Standard (which is pretty messed up in its own way) because it seems like every single card meeting this criteria has been banned across at least 3 formats.

As for the combo discussion, I'm more or less with Wraithpk. Combo has every right to exist, but it does need to have weaknesses. In my mind, a healthy combo deck has one of two possible traits. The first is that has pieces that are reasonable to interact with (ex. CoCo decks and Storm decks) so that while it can theoretically goldfish a consistent T4 or occasional T3 win, a player can potentially come in blind with reasonable means of interacting with the combo pieces game 1. The second is that the combo is difficult to interact with, but it's slow or inconsistent enough that the combo player is forced to run some form of interaction or simply auto concede game 1 against aggro and/or counters and discard. Sadly I can't think of any decks off the top of my head of decks with that second trait.

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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

Listen I would like a straight answer to this question: Why SHOULDN'T wotc expect to have a lot of bans going forward? I mean they have to be able to design new cards. Powerful cards. I find it completely reasonable that these new cards will break eternal card pools.

So instead of going all chicken little every time they ban something we should be EMBRACING these bans and any kind of cshift in attitude that fosters a healthier FUN meta. The game needs to be FUN first and foremost.
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Post by cfusionpm » 8 months ago

boltsnapbolt_ wrote:
8 months ago
What I most care about though is that since they find SSG unfun, they also found Mystic Sanctuary unfun. They did not only banned Goryos, AD Naus, etc, they also nerfed my Blue Moon deck to oblivion, because some people find it unfun! I alread tried out various UR stuff online. They are terrible with no Sanctuary...
As someone who has personally spent the better part of 5+ years complaining about UR being bad post-Twin ban, all I can say is: Make peace with it and move on. UR is never going to be good. And when UR is good, its only because it's splashing other color(s) that make up for its numerous shortcomings. I've tried them all. Blue Moon variants, Kiki variants, Thing in the Ice, Brazen Borrower, even Brineborn Cutthroat. UR does not have the answers necessary to overcome the threats Modern poses, nor does it provide its own threats to compete on the same level (they are either fragile, expensive, narrow, or all of the above).

I would love nothing more than to play a deck with my 4 foil ISD Snaps and 4 foil Player Rewards Bolts, bonus points to shove in my 4 foil original RAV Remands and full art textxless Cryptics, but that ship sailed long ago. Sanctuary wasn't even what saved it, since most Sanctuary decks were UW or UGx anyway.

Moving forward, if you're playing a Uxx deck, it's going to be UWx for Path and Teferis, UBx for Push and Discard, or UGx for *openly gestures at everything*. Some are even trying to continue 4c Omnath with W6, even without Field or Sanctuary...

But UR control is dead. It's been dead since Twin, and it ain't coming back in anything other than some aggro/spell/combo deck.

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Post by AvalonAurora » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
Listen I would like a straight answer to this question: Why SHOULDN'T wotc expect to have a lot of bans going forward? I mean they have to be able to design new cards. Powerful cards. I find it completely reasonable that these new cards will break eternal card pools.

So instead of going all chicken little every time they ban something we should be EMBRACING these bans and any kind of cshift in attitude that fosters a healthier FUN meta. The game needs to be FUN first and foremost.
While I think in the short and medium term, there will likely be lots of bans needed to keep eternal formats stable, I think in the long-run, the formats will develop the density and variety of tools across strategies that new cards that aren't obviously broken and overpowered to start with won't be as much of a threat to the meta, because all colors and basic strategies with those colors will have certain minimum power levels to any cards found in them, while still having plenty of diversity of choices and strategies, without having to make compromises of weak cards because they fill a specific role the deck needs.

At that point, I'd hope that the formats need far less bans, with the only bans being the sort of things that should never have been printed in the first place, because the meta will have the strength and flexibility to adjust to any reasonable cards or strategies.

I don't think we're very close to that point, but I do think as we get closer, there should be less need for bans over time, as long as they don't power up one meta section faster than the others (like powering up aggro faster than control) in a way that throws the meta out of balance.

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Post by Albegas » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
Listen I would like a straight answer to this question: Why SHOULDN'T wotc expect to have a lot of bans going forward? I mean they have to be able to design new cards. Powerful cards. I find it completely reasonable that these new cards will break eternal card pools.

So instead of going all chicken little every time they ban something we should be EMBRACING these bans and any kind of cshift in attitude that fosters a healthier FUN meta. The game needs to be FUN first and foremost.
Long term, bans should absolutely be expected. It's as you say: in an ever-expanding card pool, new cards will inevitably be printed that interact with old cards in such a way that the meta breaks. I'm not even bothered by the current bans. Tibalt's Trickery probably deserved a longer grace period, but WotC was probably hedging their bets since a 2nd ban announcement months later banning a high profile card that everyone thought was "safe" tends to be received more poorly than 1 mass banning, so I get that.

What drives me nutty is the fact that multiple cards recently banned in Modern are banned in Historic, Pioneer and Standard. These aren't cards that coincidentally interact poorly with old cards. These are cards that should have never been printed as they were, and I don't see why WotC should get points for banning cards that were clearly fundamental design mistakes that were too broken for the one format where bans shouldn't be needed.

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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

@AvalonAurora How much longer do they need? Modern has been around for 10 years now? If it were going to stabilize with over arching police cards it would have done so by now. No, this stability you envision is just a pipe dream. In reality, they will keep printing broken cards, at an accelerated pace in fact as we have seen the last few years.

That is the trend since moderns inception and it will not be changing. Bans will be coming in the future to deal with broken cards. Modern needs to accept it as par for the course and drive on.
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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
Listen I would like a straight answer to this question: Why SHOULDN'T wotc expect to have a lot of bans going forward? I mean they have to be able to design new cards. Powerful cards. I find it completely reasonable that these new cards will break eternal card pools.

So instead of going all chicken little every time they ban something we should be EMBRACING these bans and any kind of cshift in attitude that fosters a healthier FUN meta. The game needs to be FUN first and foremost.
People often don't embrace it because it's usually cards that have been legal for 12 years that end up getting banned and not the new toys. How many cards had to be banned to make Urza, Lord High Artificer irrelevant? Then like others brought up, a super consistent deck like Tron has existed since the beginning with no bans (unless you count Eye of Ugin, which got replaced by the land that you sac and search up a colorless spell one time).

But it doesn't have to make sense. It doesn't matter if Tron is legal forever, while other staples are banned. It's WotC's format and they have chosen to make it at least somewhat hard to predict. People don't like things that everyone can predict - it gets boring. Now, they also don't like when you can't predict anything and I think some people are somewhere in between that and "hard to predict." That's when it becomes a problem.

*Personally, I think the ban list has become like this, partially because of money made off unbans. Personally if you count every unban, I have made over $15K on unbannings. I have probably made nearly nothing the past 4 years. I think WotC's thrives on THAT, for speculators. While I realize that this is not the "main" reason, I do think it is at least part of the reason (or randomly coincides with it).
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Post by AvalonAurora » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
@AvalonAurora How much longer do they need? Modern has been around for 10 years now? If it were going to stabilize with over arching police cards it would have done so by now. No, this stability you envision is just a pipe dream. In reality, they will keep printing broken cards, at an accelerated pace in fact as we have seen the last few years.

That is the trend since moderns inception and it will not be changing. Bans will be coming in the future to deal with broken cards. Modern needs to accept it as par for the course and drive on.
I'd say at least 5 more years of Standard combined with at least 3 modern/pioneer horizons type sets during that time frame, if they do things right but with similar patterns to current printing methods. Longer for Pioneer. They could shorten it if they heavily improved upon their designs for future Horizons type sets and released them sooner, and avoided any Pioneer Horizons sets and focused only on Modern ones.

If they stick purely with Standard though, depending on printing patterns and power levels, they might never get there.

Note that this is only likely to happen if they focus on shoring up holes and weaknesses in the Modern card pool and meta potential with at least similar rates of new cards entering modern that aren't ban worthy from Standard, and some Horizons sets to serve similar purposes for the things that wouldn't be safe coming in through Standard with a higher ratio of Modern playable cards that aren't ban-worthy in the upcoming Horizons sets than the first Horizons set had.

I have my doubts they can meet those ideals though, given many of the mistakes they've made.

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Post by robertleva » 8 months ago

So you expect people to wait in limbo for 5 years for a point of theoretical stability? No one is going to plan like that and modern prices are tumbling because of it. WOTC has a format that has some interest behind it, but they treat it like an abusive spouse. They let it linger in agony for months at a time while delivering blow after blow in the form of cards like Hogaak and Looting and Oko and Uro and Etc..

Then, like a when they feel bad, they make a grand sweeping apologetic gesture in the form of a ban announcement like we just had. Just enough for their victims to get hope that maybe, just maybe, THIS TIME they will have changed for good.

But here I sit, hoping they have fixed it for good all the same so what does that make me? I guess I'm the battered spouse that keeps coming back for more and making excuses for my tormentor.
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Post by AvalonAurora » 8 months ago

robertleva wrote:
8 months ago
So you expect people to wait in limbo for 5 years for a point of theoretical stability? No one is going to plan like that and modern prices are tumbling because of it. WOTC has a format that has some interest behind it, but they treat it like an abusive spouse. They let it linger in agony for months at a time while delivering blow after blow in the form of cards like Hogaak and Looting and Oko and Uro and Etc..

Then, like a when they feel bad, they make a grand sweeping apologetic gesture in the form of a ban announcement like we just had. Just enough for their victims to get hope that maybe, just maybe, THIS TIME they will have changed for good.

But here I sit, hoping they have fixed it for good all the same so what does that make me? I guess I'm the battered spouse that keeps coming back for more and making excuses for my tormentor.
The card pool just isn't diverse enough in strong cards to self-adjust the meta well to a wider variety of things enough to reduce bans based more on meta than cards being outright broken on their own, IMO.

I suppose they could speed it up to getting to the needed point if they pushed things into Modern that don't have to worry about entering through limited environments, perhaps through some kind of 'Collectors Modern Horizons' variant product, which doesn't worry about if the boosters are viable for limited environments could push things out even faster to fill in weak areas of the card pool. They might only need two sets of that type to shore up the meta to a far more self-stabilizing position, if they designed them well.

The 5 year estimate is based on my guesses based on current printing patterns of stuff that enters modern, and an optimistic one at that, with multiple horizons sets adding to things, and having most of the things added fill in weak areas in the meta, rather than create random alternate options for already strong areas.

Note that the meta can become stable even without this, just that it remains more vulnerable to some kinds of decks suddenly becoming too powerful in ways that encourage more potential for bans. Also that stuff that might get banned in this situation for meta reasons rather than being outright broken can be potential future unban targets as the card pool fills out and the meta gains the decks and cards needed to fight back or have more diversity in that area. Wild Nacatl is an example of a kind of card that has been unbanned when the meta filled out, although it turned out too weak in the long run.

Of course, as long as they continue to print things like Uro and Oko, we'll probably continue to see regular bans anyway.

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Post by cfusionpm » 8 months ago

Re: inevitable more bans...

Modern fundamentally lacks the tools and answers needed to keep everything in check. It is almost always a "race to the bottom" every time some new busted thing comes out. And the few times "Control" or "Answers" decks are actually good, they are seen as "too good" and banned outright. So we will continue this merry-go-round dance of unwanted degeneracy and Control decks being "too good" .... probably forever. The only sad thing is that, as a Control-loving player, this means that the decks I love bounce between "unplayable" and "banworthy," while never actually settling anywhere in the middle.

Things will continue to break Modern as more cards get printed; that's a given. And until Uro + Field, that breaking is almost exclusively in linear, degenerate nonsense decks. While we know WOTC likely learned their lessons in overstepping design in 2019/2020, it remains to be seen how long it will take that pull back in power creep to see its way into upcoming sets.

Who knows, maybe they learned nothing at all, and we will continue to have our format broken every single new set. :woozy:

I think unlike an abused victim suffering from stockholm syndrome, I have instead just drifted into apathy: I simply don't care. It's a f**king mess, but none of it matters. Until I can actually play in paper again (even just FNM level without risk of killing my elderly parents and in-laws who babysit our daughter), it just doesn't matter. But I'm also likely blinded by the fact that I spent less money than my 4c Uro/Omnath deck on an entire gaming PC that can play AAA titles at max settings and high frame rates, and have been diving all my time into those games instead (specifically CoD MW 2019 since getting it at Christmas :love: :love: :love: ).

Bans gonna ban. Modern's gonna break. And honestly I can't be bothered to care much about it until paper play returns... and even then.... who knows.

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Post by The Fluff » 8 months ago

@cfusionpm

Uro snatched your cash. Mission accomplished. WotC gave him a medal.

just kidding. :halo:

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on a more serious thought. We really can't wait 5 years for everything to stabilize. Or maybe it never will?

have to keep learning how to detect which cards are broke, and not buy them if they are too expensive. For example, Hogaak was seen as destined to be banned, so people only bought it because it was cheap. Should think twice before buying overpowered 50 dollar cards like Uro.
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Post by Tzoulis » 8 months ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
8 months ago
How many cards had to be banned to make Urza, Lord High Artificer irrelevant?
I'm kinda taking this out of context - and is not directed at you, but I've seen this sentiment - Urza being so broken, that they killed Opal for him - a lot.

Ignoring the fact that we don't have enough data when both co-existed without external factors influencing deck decisions (see Oko), Urza gets a lot of undue flak. The deck that got Opal banned wasn't because of Urza or Opal by themselves, if anything Urza was the secondary wincon next to Oko. People keep tunnel visioning on Urza and Opal, but keep ignoring that the cards that gave the deck such staying and raw power was Emry, Oko, Astrolabe and Sanctuary combined, Urza was just a finisher. Moreover, because Goose and Oko made artifacts just by existing, the deck didn't need to play "useless" artifacts such as Welding Jars, Bridge, Prism etc. Haven't looked at the numbers in a while , but iirc if you wanted an active Opal by T2-T3 at 90%+ games you needed at least 22-23 artifacts in your deck with a CMC of 2 or less, that's why pre Oko and Goose decks even played 1 or 2 Darksteel Citadels.

Morever, I lost most of my games when I played a T2 Urza - itself a rarity - when playing either the Paradoxical or Prison versions of the deck, because it was so easily removed or invalidated by other decks. You know which games were not even close? When I had a T1 Emry into anything relevant.

Most people I've seen gloss over the above and end up ignoring what Emry and free artifacts from Goose and Oko did for the deck and keep focusing their ire on Urza (and Opal). Even after the Opal ban, lines of T1 Emry into T3-T4 Urza or T1 Emry into T3 Thopter/Sword were winning games, rather than T3 Urza and then something relevant. Let's not forget, that Emry is almost invalidating spot artifact destruction spells.

I'd much rather they had banned Emry (or even Astrolabe back then) than Opal and kill all current and potential artifact decks, as a bonus the Underworld Breach deck would be dead as well. They just decided to ban 2 high profile cards, without delving deeper on what made the Oko Urza decks so broken.
FoodChainGoblins wrote:
8 months ago
But it doesn't have to make sense. It doesn't matter if Tron is legal forever, while other staples are banned. It's WotC's format and they have chosen to make it at least somewhat hard to predict. People don't like things that everyone can predict - it gets boring. Now, they also don't like when you can't predict anything and I think some people are somewhere in between that and "hard to predict." That's when it becomes a problem.
I mean, the format is easy to predict, we knew back then and even now what cards are problems and when the format doesn't need bans - at least on this forum not Reddit. Hell if you asked people here what would they ban in this ban announcement most would get at least 3/5 correct, plus the cascade change. What we can't predict is what they'll print that will upend the Modern metagame, which itself is another problem.

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