Magic Changes Coming...

Discussion in 'General CPA Stuff' started by Spiderman, Aug 26, 2014.

  1. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    Mark Rosewater explains it here

    Basically they are getting rid of the 3 set blocks and the core set and having two 2-set blocks instead. Blocks will rotate out of Standard in the fall *and* spring and will be in Standard for 18 months now.
  2. Melkor Well-Known Member

    And let me be the first to say that with this action WOTC has clearly ruined Magic forever and I'll never play again.
  3. WickedBoy6 Captain of the Atog Army

    I have no strong opinion one way or the other. Standard is my weakest format by far, so this won't bother me all too much. I'll miss the "anthology" feel the Core Sets had, but ever since the revival back in 2010, it felt like less of one. Oh, things came back now and again, but not like it used to be. They could easily bring stuff back in the new expansions, though. It just goes from a big expansion and two small ones for a block and a Core Set - which was just a big expansion size, anyway - every year, we get two big and two small. Sounds like the same balance, to me. It's just more ways to tell original stories. I'm fine with it. It doesn't mess up Modern or EDH that much, which is where my attention is these days.
  4. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    Can you elaborate, Melkor?
  5. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    Not a big deal. But with no core set, people starting to play will not have as easy access to staple cards, unless they include them in the sets.
  6. rokapoke Man Among Gods

    I'm pretty sure Melkor's statement was in jest. There's always a group of players that draw the line at the most recent change, no matter how benign.
  7. Terentius The Instigator

    Does this mean we'll get more new cards every year? If so, then I'm wit it.
  8. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    Maybe, maybe not.
    It hasn't always been large set 250-300 cards and two samll sets 150+ cards....
    Gate crash had almost as many cards as RTR and Avacyn Restored had just 20 less cards than Innistrad.
    I'd bet that the sets will be a lot closer in size, more uniform.
    Where you usually get about 1000 cards per year (not all new), it's most likely going to be closer to 800 per year, but they could be the same amount of new cards.

  9. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    What staple cards? Are there different ones in the Core Set vs in the First Big Set?
  10. Melkor Well-Known Member

    Yes, my statement was a parody of the standard internet reaction to any change or announcement. This is basically completely benign for casual players. I mean, the Core set has a bunch of new cards and is a lot more like a regular expansion now (I had the same thought about "staple" cards, but just looking at the current set, what are the staples you'd be getting). The people who really care about standard will have to pay more money as cards rotate out faster. For people who don't care about standard, it's basically no change.
  11. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    What is the "First Big Set"?
  12. turgy22 Nothing Special

    I don't get why they'd do this.
    Ohhhhhhhh... now I get it.
  13. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    The first set in the block (as it stands now); since it's supposed to set the tone for the year and presumably that's when people also get into Magic and it's a Big Set, it's supposed to have some "staple cards" also.
  14. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    I'm not sure they did it for that reason, secondary market is not a major point in WoTC's methodology.
    But I see that they changed the PT from only standard for 2015 to add Modern back in......
  15. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    You weren't even close to the first to say that, but you know it already. :rolleyes:

    Either new expansions will have to include more reprints than before to make up for the loss of the core set, or the game is going to start to see a deficiency of reprints, which could have some interesting effects. It's probably not going to matter, though. As far as stories go, WotC probably underestimates just how bad they are at telling stories. No, really. I still try to follow Magic lore even now, and they're just not very good at this. They might even be so bad at it that they don't realize that they've taken away their ability to fall back on the crutch of tacking their ideas onto the scaffold of the traditional three-act play, which is what they've been doing since Odyssey (aside from an experiment in 2007 and 2008, when the lore sucked even worse than normal).

    Yes, and that's the main point of interest, really. Or it should be as far as most casual players are concerned (casual players who primarily focus on Limited formats excepted).

    Since Giant Spider left the core set for M13, there have been zero cards that have been staples for every core set. Everything's been missing at some point. And really, who cares about Giant Spider anyway (except maybe Spiderman)? The days when Lighting Bolt and Counterspell were core set staples are long, long gone.

    I've noticed two major camps on this issue with regard to Standard. The first has a line something like this...

    "Now that sets will rotate out of Standard faster, we'll all be forced to buy more cards! Wizards is releasing new cards more often in a blatant grab for more of our money! More new cards is bad news. I don't want more! I want fewer!"

    While it is plausible that profit is part of the motive here, all that whining just seems rather pitiful. The second camp says something more like this...

    "Actually, since there won't be big set rotations in Standard that eliminate one block and replace it with a single set that builds up to a new block, decks won't be phased out as abruptly as they were under the old system. Individual cards will be in Standard for less time, but only by a few month. But now Standard will have more sets in it more of the time, which should make deck design more stable. This could mean that you get to keep your Standard deck for longer, and that therefore Constructed players actually won't have to spend as much money as before."

    This is convoluted and probably contingent on too many things, but it might apply some of the time. I don't really know, as I don't actually play Standard. In any case, the economics that will be particular to this would only apply to competitive Standard players anyway. The change doesn't seem like it would affect the rest of us.

    One would think that it wouldn't be, but sometimes the secondary market really does matter. For Standard, this happens because chase rares only enter the secondary market after they've been opened in boosters. This indirectly increases demand for sets that have more chase rares. That's supposedly why Dragon's Maze sold poorly.

    I know it'll sound like some tinfoil hat silliness, but I'm serious: they're trying to make Modern successful and marginalize Legacy. Wizards of the Coast tried, several years ago, to promote Legacy. But the format can't become successful with the Reserved List in place. Also, no one at WotC understands Legacy (this might seem like an odd assertion, but the entire Legacy community has finally come around to the realization that it's the case—also, I can present support for the claim if anyone wants to see more of my ranting) and the gameplay in Legacy is different from how they envision Magic anyway. Modern, being a format that the company understands and can more easily control, offers a sort of blank slate. But until recently, the Modern community was only growing very slowly. Modern is finally successful enough that they're willing to push it and make it the real successor to the Extended of the old days. And more diversity in the structure of the Pro Tour is probably better for generating interest in it...
  16. Mooseman Isengar Tussle

    Actually, from what I read, they tried to take all the diversity out of the PT and make it only standard for 2015 and onward. Now they relented from all the yammering and added Modern back in.
  17. Terentius The Instigator

    I'm probably way off base because I don't keep up with this sort of thing, but does Wizards do this because the non-Eternal formats play Magic closer to the way they meant it to be played in terms of game design, i.e. not using broken cards and combos?
  18. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    When you say "they meant it to be played" what do you have in mind? Because Richard Garfield knew that cards like Black Lotus and Berserk could be extremely powerful. That kind of power was made a part of the game from the beginning.

    As for "non-Eternal" formats lacking broken cards and combos, while Theros is pretty tame, it wasn't so long ago that the broken cards and combos that run rampant in "Eternal" Magic were part of Standard. Delver of Secrets, Wurmcoil Engine, Green Sun's Zenith, Griselbrand, etc. This stuff didn't arise from some long-ago mistake back in 1995 or whenever that Wizards of the Coast doesn't want to have to deal with anymore. It's been within the past few years.

    Anyway, I don't think that there is a simple explanation for what's happened with the formats. People have attributed developments to various causes, but for a given explanation, there are some details that just fly in the face of it.
  19. Terentius The Instigator

    I'm not really sure; I was hoping you'd tell me, as I'm not familiar with what's actually popular/competitive in Legacy and Vintage. I guess I mean Wizards designs awesome looking cards like Garruk, Apex Predator, but it has no place in Eternal formats because it can't be "broken" in some way (at least not at the moment). But then again, they'd have to have known people weren't going to be hardcasting Progenitus. Maybe I'm just talking about the difference between Constructed and Limited or casual players, like that comic you posted a while back? I don't know.
  20. Oversoul The Tentacled One

    Well, I could tell you what the top decks in Legacy and Vintage are. That part's easy (and these days, it's statistically tracked pretty well by The Council). But you're getting at something else that's a lot murkier: WotC's treatment of Eternal formats. Part of the murkiness is quite justifiable, as it's neither desirable nor even really possible for them to keep the community completely informed of the issues from their side of the table. I want to write an article on the subject, but it bears emphasis that any analysis I could perform would be highly speculative, drawing on what few facts we do have about the matter. Anyway, despite the lack of information, I do have a lot to say about it. I hesitate to do so here just because until I write an article about it, I'm not quite sure where to begin. That's a pretty lame answer, but just you wait...

    Well, Giant Oyster has no place in Eternal formats either. The vast majority of cards that have ever been printed, not just new ones, are not really viable in Eternal tournament play. I'll put it this way, though...

    The five most recent blocks of expansions have been, starting from September of 2009, Zendikar, Scars of Mirrodin, Innistrad, Return to Ravnica, and Theros. The first three of those, the ones that ran from 2009 to 2012, have probably demonstrated the greatest prevalence of broken cards out of any sets, ever. Those sets do still have weak cards, but overall, they completely changed Eternal formats. The two blocks since then haven't contributed as much to Eternal formats, but some individual cards are exceptional. For example, Eidolon of the Great Revel has been doing very well for itself in Legacy. We don't really know what the future holds. Yeah, the most recent sets haven't been impressive for Vintage and Legacy, but it's not like the sets that were are so very distant. Will the power level ramp back up or will things stay the same? In the long run, even WotC can't know.

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