Card Advantage

Discussion in 'CPA/WOTC Magic Issues' started by Gizmo, May 17, 2001.

  1. Darsh Corrupt CPA Member

    ...I think the Lab is pretty good. I admit, it doesn't give any card advantage, but it does help you out. If you bounce 2 things, while the Lab is in play, they eventually will run out of permanents. Not only that, but with counter magic, you'd have the upper hand.

    It's not advantagous, but it's not useless...
  2. DÛke Memento Mori

    Uh Darsh, I doubt you've ever even seen a lab much less played with one, besides didn't you quit magic?
  3. Darsh Corrupt CPA Member

    Now that you asked, I've played Labs myself. They're not bad at all. You have to have some brains to use them though.
  4. Mars New Member

    As a sideboard card in a Magpile Deck versus Accelerated Blue back in the day, they rocked. Guess who usually won THAT counterwar? As far as how good they are now, that's debatable. I know that Magpile is back, though.
  5. Namielus Phrexian Plaguelord

    Labs were wonderful with a countermagic-low deck, with a lot of card drawing, which is why magpile used them. They make the weismann lock very easy to maintain.
  6. Mars New Member

    Dark Ritual and Tutors?

    aren't they card DISadvantage?
  7. Gerode Becoming a Lurker Again

    Wouldn't those cards allow you to play cards that would create card advantage? You can Dark Ritual to put out a Useful card before your opponent can neutralize it, or you can tutor for a card that would give you a large advantage.
  8. Mars New Member

    My point is that even though we know Rits and Tutors to be incrediblly Useful cards, they are inherently card DISadvantageous, since we are spending two cards to put one in play. If our opponent then uses one card to get rid of our card, we have given them card advantage.

    Of course, forget all this if you're playing in a format where Yawgmoth's Will is legal. :)

    Gizmo, why not try Seal of Fire as a better example than Seal of Cleansing? Or Dismantling Blow, even.
  9. Duel Has Less Posts Than Spiderman

    The point is, though, that rituals are advantageous because cards you never play are useless: you might as well not have them. The point of Rituals is to kill your opponent before they can play cards to capitalize on their advantage.

    Tutors are the biggest deal, and it boils down to this:
    The right cards are better than lots of cards.

    Look at cards like Demonic Tutor or Survival of the Fittest. These cards have no card advantage whatsoever, but they were banned because they allowed you to get the cards you needed. Necropotence was amazingly powerful, because it let you choose 7 cards to put in your hand, and EVERY ONE OF THEM WAS PROBABLY USEFUL. Look at Donate: 2-0 card disadvantage. And Illusions of Grandeur? 1-0. Force of will? 2-1. The only thing is: you have 1 card advantage weapon (and the best) and the choice of cards that will stop them from capitalizing on the rest of your deck. Tradewind/Survival was even funnier, with tradewinds as the only real card advantage weapon. Oath simply makes sure that the creatures they get are better than the ones you get, not that they have more. Stasis has no card advantage, but it stops them from playing cards. You see how this works?
  10. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    Slightly confused between Mars and Gerode... it seemed to me Gerode was saying they create card advantage and Mars is saying they don't, yet Mars said "Exactly", implying he agreed with Gerode. But I got the general gist anyway :)

    To slightly reiterate, I think strictly speaking the Ritual is card disadvantage because you're spending an extra card to play another card. However, since it's probably being used to improve your position, it will probably force your opponent to react, perhaps creating time advantage (didn't an article on the DOjo once cover this?).

    Like Duel says, the Tutor replaces itself but with the certain card you need. So perhaps that's hand advantage :)
  11. Mars New Member

    Cards. In part two he will discuss "Advantage," although probably not until after this weekend as English Nats are upon us and I'm sure he's doing some last minute tweaking.

    If I understand Gizmo right, all these different "advantanges" can be combined into one unified theory of Magic, called, by Gizmo, "Card Advantage." He's taking all this nice and slow, to be careful I'm sure, by discussing "cards" first, then "advantage" (coming soon!), then hopefully combine them all in a Part 3 (Cards + Advantage = Card Advantage, Pulling it All Together). His first opus on this topic can be found at his Team CAND!MAN website.

    I admire Gizmo's trying to reduce the complicated to the simple. It's not as easy as it sounds. Time advantage, hand advantage, speed advantage, mana advantage, Flores' Investment theory, control advantage, soft-lock or hard-lock advantage, topdeck advantage, millstone advantage, reduce-opponent's-life-to-zero advantage, blah blah etc advantage; I think Gizmo's point is that they're all reflections of the SAME one Unified Advantage.

    My favorite "advantage," because it's either genius or totally bizarre, is "time-walk" advantage, in which every card is supposedly a Time Walk.
    ???
    Well, if that's true, then we're all in the same boat, eh? So where's the advantage?

    As far as dark Rits and Tutors go, yes, they are fantastic, yet techically card disatvantageous. As Spiderman pointed out, so what? They are simple transferred to another kind of advantage, board position advantage. Unless the spell is countered or otherwise handled, in which case their potential diadvantagousness becomes apparent. I think a good analogy would come from Physics, where Energy remains constant but is simply transferred into different forms, such as Heat Energy, Potential Energy, Kinetic Energy, etc.

    I know in the past Gizmo has not liked bounce, this was pre-WashOut and post-Hibernation, both of which are quite T2 legal. Technically NOT "card advantageous" since the threats they remove can come back, they certainly have won plenty of games. Although I'll bet Gizmo will say he was talking about the one-for-one bouncers like Boomerang and Hookwink. In this case, the ratio is 0:1, because you spent a card yet you will see the card you bounced again, unless of course it's fat and you have a Rising Waters in play, in which case you have Rising Waters Advantage.

    And let's not get into Tangle Wire Advantage or Rishidan Port Advantage, as things get really sticky, really fast.

    Ah, semantics.
  12. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    If you play Dark Ritual you are inevitably playing a 2-1 situation (Ritual does nothing) the advantage can only be bought back by Ritual if it helps to end the game before your opponent can play his spells out - if a Ritualled assault kills your opponent two turns earlier than a non-Ritualled assault, then the Ritual did it`s job as the opponent possibly plays 2/3 fewer spells as a result of that Ritual. Unless your deck is consistently fast enough to win because of Ritual then it should be avoided.

    In control Ritual allows spells to be played when otherwise they would not be played - Ritual accelerates the tempo of the deck, however ti does so at the cost of a card, if that advantage is not made up at some point Ritual will be the reason why you lost.

    I`m very wary about putting Ritual into a deck, usually you can replace Ritual by playing a smoother mana curve and come away with a better deck.

    Tutors are another example of wasting a card. By and large I avoid Tutors as well - notice that the only time Tutors are played by professional deckbuilders are when they build them around 'silver bullet' decks where they play 4 Tutors and 5-6 hosers that they draw as the situation calls, each of those bullets translating into enormous card advantage against a particular deck. The practice of simply putting two Tutors into a normal deck, as is popular among less skilled designers, is only likely to weaken the deck.

    Boomerang spells are advantage by tempo. As the Tradewind Rider example shows the Boomerang might not be 'destroy target permanent' but it might well be 'target player chooses and sacrifices a permant' if it leaves the player unable to get a creature down in time. Inevitably bounce effects are weak, however, as they are a gamble that (when it doesn`t pay off) leaves you a card down and can be the reason you lose. In blue you play them often because you have no other option as to how to deal with a particular threat that comes down, but otherwise they should be avoided.
    Mars cites Wash Out as an example - note that Wash out is played exclusively in aggressive decks that can take advantage of the two turns that the player is set back by Wash Out to win the game, whereas a control player would only find Wash Out to be a negative effect as he has to deal with those cards sooner or later.

    As ever, all these statements have plenty of examples of real game situations where they are not necessarily true (ie the control deck has 7 counters in hand so Wash out lets him deal with the threats as his opponent replays them, where the Counters would otherwise have been useless). But they provide a guide to how to approach the deckbuilding, and to avoid putting cards in that are only going to be useful in such marginal circumstances.

    Inevitably including 1-0 'tempo' cards is a risk because if your assault slows even a little your opponent will not only find parity, but advantage, and from there you are unlikely to win. It is up to you to judge how great the risk is, this is brinkmanship - putting tempo cards in makes it more likely your deck will win because of tempo advantage, but also makes it more likely you will lose if anything goes wrong, so you have to judge how consistent your deck is, and also how well an opponent will be able to slow your assault and turn it into a longer game.
    Another thing worth considering (but I`ll explain better somewhere else) is that a deck of 20 land usually begins the game with a functional +1 advantage over a deck running 24+ land simply because it will probably draw one less land in the early game, and this advantage will grow to +2 or greater as the game goes on.
  13. Duel Has Less Posts Than Spiderman

    Okay, in magic IN GENERAL there are 3 rescources:
    Mana
    Cards
    Life

    Necropotence trades X life for X cards and 3 Mana. Creatures, in general, trade 1 card and X mana for -X life from an opponent.

    Rituals trades 1 card for 2 mana. This is good IF
    A) It allows you to kill them before they can capitalize on card advantage

    B) It allows you to play a card that is improved by coming out before they have the mana to spend to deal with it,, so that it either produces card advantage (i.e. chump blockers) or helps end the game (suicide black in general)

    If there are black cards out that do that, it's worthwhile. For instance, phyrexian arena. Ritualing out a phyrexian arena on turn 1 is card advantage (by turn 2 it's equal, by turn 3, it's an extra card). Rituals suck if you already have all the mana you need, though.
  14. Istanbul Sucker MCs call me sire.

    I have so much respect for that phrase. Mana curve...it's a facet of deck construction. And with so many netdecks these days, I'm sure most of us would agree that deck construction is an art that 80% of the people that have started playing in the last year have simply never had to learn.

    This is why I usually do very well in drafts.
  15. Duel Has Less Posts Than Spiderman

    Hmmm... I do VERY well in drafts.

    Look, the key at drafting is to ignore synergy to a large extent, and focus on how effective each card is. In drafting the rules of card advantage are different, as interactions occur less and less, so each card should be effective in it's own right

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