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Author Topic: Brainstorm, Flash, Gush, Scroll, and Ponder Restricted  (Read 51042 times)
Methuselahn
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« Reply #120 on: June 02, 2008, 07:07:16 am »

My faith in the DCI remains unchanged. 


What ever happened to the philosophy of doing things in small quantities to avoid catastrophe?

I seriously doubt these decisions were based on any amount of research, or god forbid, testing.

Oh well, the interest in vintage leveled about 5 years ago, maybe it will pick up now.
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« Reply #121 on: June 02, 2008, 07:07:47 am »

I don't even play anymore and this actually makes me want to start again because it makes everything so much more interesting.
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« Reply #122 on: June 02, 2008, 07:14:41 am »

YES! YES! YES!!!!

In Richmond as Smemmen mentioned in his latest article he and I were talking about the state of vintage. My frustration with the format was that first off YOU HAVE TO PLAY THE BLUE DECK, sure blue is the best color, sure if you think you are the better player you play the blue deck to maximize your odds of winning because it has the most powerful cards, but for vintage, in my opinion its just not the same.

The first thing I hate about the blue deck: Every blue deck has the same 45 cards. You have to play 4 Gush, Brainstorm, Ponder, Merchant Scroll, Force of Will etc etc. The room for innovation is pretty slim.

The second thing I hate about the blue deck: The mirror. The mirror isn't decided by tech, or skill, or anything other than draw. Even worse none of the cards do anything, the game is honestly decided by whoever does more STUFF. Duress/Thoughtseize you, Gush, Brainstorm put 2 lands back, Scroll for Recall, Recall. Nine spells later, the board is the same and I have drawn 100 cards, guess what my hand is all Brainstorms Ponders Scrolls and Duresses! Then after I have cast all those ill get a Fastbond. Fastbond sure is a neat card, really doesn't do anything when you think about it, since when was playing extra lands a super broken effect, before Gush it really wasn't in any decks at all. Well now that I have fastbond I get to play all my crappy cantrips FASTER and then I get Yawgmoth's Willl which ill use to replay all my crappy cantrips and ill draw my win condition Tarmogoyf? no Meloku (lol) nope, some storm card. LAME!

The third thing I hate about the blue deck: Its so consistent. When your deck is all cantrips and restricted cards, as long as you draw lands and spells your hand is going to be sick.

When I complained about all these very things to Steve, he asked me what I would do to fix vintage. I didn't really have an answer except unrestrict Necro so there would be a sick black deck to fight the gush decks. He asked me if restricting Scroll would fix anything, though it would make the Gush+bond plan worse, people would just play more garbage spells that dig, like Impulse.

Without knowing it, these are exactly the changes I was asking for. The blue deck has taken a serious blow and I for one could not possibly be happier.

- Owen
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« Reply #123 on: June 02, 2008, 07:15:31 am »

Brainstorm:
I think you quite neatly summed up why Brainstorm had to go, yourself. As you explain, brainstorm just does sooo much good for consistency. Letting you play a smoother land base, giving you pitchable cards to FoW, letting you hide key cards from discard effects, putting accidentily drawn Colossi and Oath-creatures back in your library and letting you go through your deck faster. All this at instant speed and almost for free. Yep, it made vintage streamlined. But maybe a bit too streamlined. Digging 3 cards deep into your deck is a powerfull effect in vintage, as a single card can end the game right there. Which leads on to...

The problem with restricting Brainstorm is that by killing consistency, you're making the game more luck-based.  Shop and Ichorid at least can rely on consistently getting their principle engines (Shop and Bazaar) consistently as they are 4-ofs.  But blue decks rely primarily on singleton bombs like Ancestral, Tinker, and Yawg Will to gain an advantage.  You take away Brainstorm and you have blue decks that only work when the players running them get lucky.

Regarding the "golden age of vintage", I'm not quite sure if i agree, seing top 8s of Hulk, Dredge and [random-gush/bond-engine.dec]. That's not a golden metagame.

Looking at the last SCG top8s, I see MS Paint x2, Tyrant Oath x3, Masknaught, Ichorid x2, Tropical Storm x3, Red Stax, Flash x2, GAT, and MUD Painter.  That's a pretty diverse field, and could have been made even more diverse by restricting Merchant Scroll.
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« Reply #124 on: June 02, 2008, 07:17:34 am »

WOW! I wasn't expecting to see this!

First, the complete randomness of restricting Ponder is frightening. I guess they set the prescident with the random (late) restriction of Gifts, and they're continuing the tradition. The knowledge that "No card is truly safe" could certainly bring instability for collectors.

Second, Duress/T'Seize just JUMPED in utility. No more being ability to consistantly hide key cards, on top, in response.

Does this bump Personal Tutor to being playable?...
« Last Edit: June 02, 2008, 07:27:47 am by redmage419 » Logged
bluemage55
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« Reply #125 on: June 02, 2008, 07:22:11 am »

In Richmond as Smemmen mentioned in his latest article he and I were talking about the state of vintage. My frustration with the format was that first off YOU HAVE TO PLAY THE BLUE DECK, sure blue is the best color, sure if you think you are the better player you play the blue deck to maximize your odds of winning because it has the most powerful cards, but for vintage, in my opinion its just not the same.

I don't think anyone's really disputing that blue should be weakened.  It's the method and extremity to which it has been done that has people put off.

The first thing I hate about the blue deck: Every blue deck has the same 45 cards. You have to play 4 Gush, Brainstorm, Ponder, Merchant Scroll, Force of Will etc etc. The room for innovation is pretty slim.

Solve by removing Scroll and unrestricing Fact and Gifts.  All of a sudden you have a bunch of different draw engines to work with.

The second thing I hate about the blue deck: The mirror. The mirror isn't decided by tech, or skill, or anything other than draw. Even worse none of the cards do anything, the game is honestly decided by whoever does more STUFF. Duress/Thoughtseize you, Gush, Brainstorm put 2 lands back, Scroll for Recall, Recall. Nine spells later, the board is the same and I have drawn 100 cards, guess what my hand is all Brainstorms Ponders Scrolls and Duresses! Then after I have cast all those ill get a Fastbond. Fastbond sure is a neat card, really doesn't do anything when you think about it, since when was playing extra lands a super broken effect, before Gush it really wasn't in any decks at all. Well now that I have fastbond I get to play all my crappy cantrips FASTER and then I get Yawgmoth's Willl which ill use to replay all my crappy cantrips and ill draw my win condition Tarmogoyf? no Meloku (lol) nope, some storm card. LAME!

That's absolute crap.  The blue mirror is the most skill intensive matchup in the game, where making Duress/Brainstorm/Fact or Fiction/Gifts Ungiven decisions as well as effectively timing threats and counterwars, carries the day.

The third thing I hate about the blue deck: Its so consistent. When your deck is all cantrips and restricted cards, as long as you draw lands and spells your hand is going to be sick.

So first you complain that playing blue decks is dependant on the luck of the draw, and now you're bothered by the consistency??
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bluemage55
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« Reply #126 on: June 02, 2008, 07:23:36 am »

Second Duress/T'Seize just JUMPED in utility. No more being ability to consistantly hide key cards, on top, in response.

Not to mention that they are now the best turn 1 play for the blue decks, since they're no longer casting Brainstorm or Ponder.
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« Reply #127 on: June 02, 2008, 07:26:47 am »

Quote
Without knowing it, these are exactly the changes I was asking for. The blue deck has taken a serious blow and I for one could not possibly be happier.

- Owen

I agree with the things you said in your post about U-based decks. I've been feeling the same way for the past 9-10 months, although I never really verbalized it - I guess I too was buying into the idea that vintage has certain "untouchables" that are critical to the integrity of the format.

The thing is though, blue will very likely continue to dominate as far as deck choice goes for those wishing to play the most consistent and skill-intensive deck. Blue has incredible depth as far as card drawing and manipulation go, and while the re-introduction of older engines (TfK, Intuition-AK) and manipulators (Portent, Sleight of Hand, Opt, Impulse) will lead to less efficient decks by today's standards of U-based control/combo, they should still prove to be quite powerful.

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« Reply #128 on: June 02, 2008, 07:27:08 am »

Great...

Sooner or later, if this continues, Vintage will become a Highlander format., Playing 1 of EACH card.

Next in line in restriction:

Bazaar of Baghdad
Mishra's Workshop

next:

Wasteland
Force of Will (omg if this happens)



I still cannot understand why Brainstorm took the spot (ok, even Ponder).
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« Reply #129 on: June 02, 2008, 07:35:39 am »

My first reaction was: WTF!?!
And I always thought that the DCI's approach to B&R list changes was a more cautious one to see what happens after a change. I'm just wondering why they restrict Ponder while cards like Mishra's Workshop or Bazaar of Baghdad are still allowed as four-offs.

Also, I just realized that Brainstorm, Ponder and Merchant Scroll are now added to the list of cards unbanned in Legacy but restricted in Vintage. This means I cannot even port my Legacy Threshold into a Vintage setting anymore. Surprised

Maybe they really want to restrict everything until Skullclamp becomes good, and then restrict Skullclamp (I can't remember where I read that). Smile

That was Chris Pikula on extended.  "Ban everything until Necro becomes good again.  Then ban Necro and you're done!"
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« Reply #130 on: June 02, 2008, 07:38:37 am »

bluemage55 thank you for the reminder of why I stopped posting, I failed to flawlessly articulate my point and you felt the need to complain about it.
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« Reply #131 on: June 02, 2008, 07:41:24 am »

Sigh.

The problem with this decision is that it proves the DCI doesn't think about Vintage in a way different from other, simpler formats like Standard. Whenever bannings are handed down in Standard, it's usually related to how much a card is overplayed, like Skullclamp. The difference with Vintage, however, was that the DCI had (supposedly) adopted a type of laissez-faire approach to it, a la "as long as the format doesn't explode, that's all right with us". And indeed, our testing shows that the format was wide-open. While Gush was heavily played, it was played in many decks and created balance in the format.

This decision, however, was built on the principle that overplay is a bad thing. By this standard, we should be seeing Force of Will, Bazaar of Baghdad, and other format staples out the door shortly. Which is foolish.

I think WotC was trying to slow the format down more than anything else by cutting off tools, but what they failed to recognize was that the format was already quite slow. Yes, Flash existed, and probably deserved restriction, but even unrestricted Flash wasn't a problem; the results the deck was putting up were barely palatable as it was, because the format is so control-heavy, a turn 1 win with 8 maindeck counterspells for backup isn't good.
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« Reply #132 on: June 02, 2008, 07:45:49 am »

bluemage55 thank you for the reminder of why I stopped posting, I failed to flawlessly articulate my point and you felt the need to complain about it.

A person criticizing your views is not complaining about them; they are identifying problems with your point so that you can either correct them or withdraw your viewpoint. 

Also, if I am not mistaken, TMD holds certain standards that require a certain amount of substance in a post that seems to be lacking here.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2008, 07:51:48 am by bluemage55 » Logged
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« Reply #133 on: June 02, 2008, 07:49:29 am »

I think WotC was trying to slow the format down more than anything else by cutting off tools, but what they failed to recognize was that the format was already quite slow. Yes, Flash existed, and probably deserved restriction, but even unrestricted Flash wasn't a problem; the results the deck was putting up were barely palatable as it was, because the format is so control-heavy, a turn 1 win with 8 maindeck counterspells for backup isn't good.

Well, presuming that they made the rest of the cuts to keep blue in check, as it seems they did, Flash would have been RIDICULOUS in a no-Gush, no Brainstorm format (even without Brainstorm and Scroll).  So goodbye, Flash - a Mox you won me, and good riddance.
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« Reply #134 on: June 02, 2008, 07:57:22 am »

I was getting tired of playing vintage and was deciding on selling all my old cards. I am tired of playing a spell and waiting for 'Brainstorm, force of will pitching ponder.' Its just so boring and repetitive knowing that the guy you're playing against is always going to counter my spell. How is this interactive and skill intensive? Is it really skill intensive hiding my yawg will from a duress, or putting Tyrant back into the deck and then fetchlanding? For you blue mages complaining, you still have Recall, Timewalk, drains, and all other goodies. resstricting brainstorm and ponder is great, because it makes the other colors more playable. Look at all the Top8 decks on morphling.de; they're all blue, they all have FoW, brainstorm, ponder, merchant scroll, save the occasional MUD or ichorid decks. What I mean is, in order to compete in Vintage, you had to play blue, and it was really a crimp in innovation. Are you guys really happy playing the same pile year in and year out? Isn't Magic about preparing for the unexpected and having your deck able to handle unknown threats? vintage has always been about playing 3-4 top decks, knowing which decks you'll see, and metagaming for it, and it was boring as hell. Now everything is wide open, and I think the golden age of Vintage is just starting.

On a side note:
Seeing all these Top 4 painter's servants decks makes me cringe. REBs and Pyro's maindeck to blow everything away? thats awful. WotC should have done something to this deck.
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« Reply #135 on: June 02, 2008, 08:02:57 am »

Magic is over, the world is coming to an end, I want to die, and there is no god! How does one even play Magic The Gathering without Brainstorms?
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« Reply #136 on: June 02, 2008, 08:03:31 am »

I guess I am alone with the belief that this is an exciting time for our format.

I guess that's one way to look at it.  Just one question, though.  When I'm trying to convince a Standard player to give Vintage a try, and he asks me why Ponder is restricted but Bazaar isn't, what do I tell him?
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« Reply #137 on: June 02, 2008, 08:06:12 am »

I guess I am alone with the belief that this is an exciting time for our format.

I guess that's one way to look at it.  Just one question, though.  When I'm trying to convince a Standard player to give Vintage a try, and he asks me why Ponder is restricted but Bazaar isn't, what do I tell him?

Furthermore, when a Standard player asks why we don't use the attack phase since Gush was restricted, and why combo rules the format, what do we say?
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« Reply #138 on: June 02, 2008, 08:31:45 am »

I guess I am alone with the belief that this is an exciting time for our format.

I guess that's one way to look at it.  Just one question, though.  When I'm trying to convince a Standard player to give Vintage a try, and he asks me why Ponder is restricted but Bazaar isn't, what do I tell him?

Furthermore, when a Standard player asks why we don't use the attack phase since Gush was restricted, and why combo rules the format, what do we say?

Bazaar vs Ponder.
Tell your friend, that Ponder is a free way to smooth your draws/mana development (almost no mana investment, replaces itself with "draw a card"), while Bazaar gives a similar ability to dig through the deck, but at an entirely different cost (1 card + 1 land drop investment to play it. Plus additional card disadvantage each time you use it). Bazaar however has the ability to dump stuff into your 'yard in an uncounterable way and has a nice interaction with certain dragons and goblins. Ponder is fixing your draws. Bazaar is an engine. They're entirely different, despite the digging thing.

Vintage vs the attack phase.
What did you imagine in the most broken format? If combo has a chance anywhere, it should be in vintage?
And Gush brought Gro back, no ? That deck has been known to use attack steps.
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« Reply #139 on: June 02, 2008, 08:37:04 am »

so blue was ruling type 1. what the hell is wrong with blue ruling type 1?
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« Reply #140 on: June 02, 2008, 08:37:36 am »


Bazaar vs Ponder.
Tell your friend, that Ponder is a free way to smooth your draws/mana development (almost no mana investment, replaces itself with "draw a card"), while Bazaar gives a similar ability to dig through the deck, but at an entirely different cost (1 card + 1 land drop investment to play it. Plus additional card disadvantage each time you use it). Bazaar however has the ability to dump stuff into your 'yard in an uncounterable way and has a nice interaction with certain dragons and goblins. Ponder is fixing your draws. Bazaar is an engine. They're entirely different, despite the digging thing.

But Ponder is not free.  It costs a blue.  Bazzar, on the other hand, is free.  Just drop it into play.  Can't be countered, can't be responded to. And Ponder is Sorcery-speed, whereas Bazaar can be activated at Instant speed.  And Ponder is a one-shot deal that can be countered, whereas Bazaar is reusable and can't be countered.  And while discarding cards to Bazaar could be seen as a disadvantage, it's not really, since they left Yawgmoth's Will in the format.  Also, Ichorid seems to cope just fine with the card disadvantage.

Bazaar is unquestionably more powerful than Ponder.  Yet Ponder got the axe.  It's insanity.
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« Reply #141 on: June 02, 2008, 08:48:21 am »

In my opinion, Threshold deck from legacy can be better than any blue based deck in vintage. .
At least legacy deck can be more stable. .
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« Reply #142 on: June 02, 2008, 08:51:18 am »

I guess I am alone with the belief that this is an exciting time for our format.

I guess that's one way to look at it.  Just one question, though.  When I'm trying to convince a Standard player to give Vintage a try, and he asks me why Ponder is restricted but Bazaar isn't, what do I tell him?

You're asking the wrong person. Perhaps you'll get the answer you're looking for on Friday, perhaps not. Either way, I'm not quite sure what your concern is. Do you mean to say that you think it is important to be able to justify the B&R list to newcomers in order to convince them to try the format?
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« Reply #143 on: June 02, 2008, 08:54:08 am »

Bazaar vs Ponder.
Tell your friend, that Ponder is a free way to smooth your draws/mana development (almost no mana investment, replaces itself with "draw a card"), while Bazaar gives a similar ability to dig through the deck, but at an entirely different cost (1 card + 1 land drop investment to play it. Plus additional card disadvantage each time you use it). Bazaar however has the ability to dump stuff into your 'yard in an uncounterable way and has a nice interaction with certain dragons and goblins. Ponder is fixing your draws. Bazaar is an engine. They're entirely different, despite the digging thing.

I believe the argument is that Bazaar is much, much more powerful than Ponder ever has been or will be.

Vintage vs the attack phase.
What did you imagine in the most broken format? If combo has a chance anywhere, it should be in vintage?

Combo does have a chance.  When combo is dominant, however, you have non-interactive games that end on turns 1 and 2.  That's not something that we want.

And Gush brought Gro back, no ? That deck has been known to use attack steps.

And restricting it again means that the attack phase disappears yet again, obviously.
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« Reply #144 on: June 02, 2008, 08:56:02 am »

You're asking the wrong person. Perhaps you'll get the answer you're looking for on Friday, perhaps not. Either way, I'm not quite sure what your concern is. Do you mean to say that you think it is important to be able to justify the B&R list to newcomers in order to convince them to try the format?

It was a rhetorical question.  He was suggesting that it does not make sense for Ponder to be restricted while Bazaar is unrestricted.

And I agree, perhaps the answer will come on Friday.
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« Reply #145 on: June 02, 2008, 08:58:12 am »

Do you mean to say that you think it is important to be able to justify the B&R list to newcomers in order to convince them to try the format?

I think that if a player new to the format is unable to comprehend the reasoning for the apparent contradiction between obviously powerful, yet unrestricted cards (Bazaar, Workshop, Ritual), and underpowered yet restricted cards (Ponder), then they are likely to shy away from the format.  After all, if they can't even understand why Ponder is better than Bazaar (which it must be, because it's restricted, right?), then what hope do they have of succeeding and excelling in the format?
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« Reply #146 on: June 02, 2008, 09:00:12 am »

While I loved casting brainstorm as much as the next person I can understand Wizards wanting to restrict the card.  I feel like the only reason they really got rid of Ponder is to force people from just doing Ė3 Brainstorm +3 Ponder and calling it a day in their T1 deck.

I think the change is going to be very interesting in the long run.  Right now Iím looking at testing some Drain TPS deck and IT.  Should be interesting to see how any blue deck operates without Brainstorm as itís been the foundation of many a blue deck.  Like many other people have cited one thing I donít like about the change is that nothing was done to Shops and Ichorid but if those decks prove themselves to be much more popular than the rest of the field players will adapt accordingly.
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« Reply #147 on: June 02, 2008, 09:01:22 am »

Quote
And while discarding cards to Bazaar could be seen as a disadvantage, it's not really, since they left Yawgmoth's Will in the format.

Hmmm, I thought about it, and I can't name a single deck that has used both bazaar and Will in the last 3 years.

Also, for decks other than Ichorid, Bazaar costs a land drop. This is huge for Dragon and Dawn of the Dead since it does slow them down significantly.
Quote
I think that if a player new to the format is unable to comprehend the reasoning for the apparent contradiction between obviously powerful, yet unrestricted cards (Bazaar, Workshop, Ritual), and underpowered yet restricted cards (Ponder), then they are likely to shy away from the format.  After all, if they can't even understand why Ponder is better than Bazaar (which it must be, because it's restricted, right?), then what hope do they have of succeeding and excelling in the format?

Are you saying that blue decks should have run Bazaar instead of Ponder? Of course not, both cards are different and serve different purposes. Wizards saw there was a problem with blue decks and not with Bazaar decks (which exept for Ichorids, are mostly unplayed).
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« Reply #148 on: June 02, 2008, 09:03:49 am »

mmm, now it rhymes with Legacy... and suck
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« Reply #149 on: June 02, 2008, 09:08:58 am »

I like it. Deck construction is relevant again.  Very Happy

There has never been a time in Vintage when deck construction wasn't relevant.

Decks won't start with 4 BS, 4 Ponder, 4 Merchant Scroll, 4 Gush, 4 FoW anymore (plus Moxen, Lotus, recall, lands, that's already half a deck).
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