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By: Paul Leicht, Paul Emerson Leicht
Jul 03 2015 12:00pm
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Magical Outrage and Other Woes

By Paul Emerson Leicht July 2015

pen & pencil by Paul Emerson Leicht 2015
Pen & Pencil by Paul Emerson Leicht 2015.

Introduction
(AKA Where have I been and why haven't I written..not even a postcard?)
I have been dealing with a sort of paralyzing depression these last 8 or so months. I've been functioning in many ways like I always do but I have had real trouble convincing myself to put words to "paper". I've managed a few songs here and there (about 15 total for the year to date) and some drawings both black and white and colored and I even did some Acrylics work with both M:TG tokens (Wurms for Wurmcoil Engine) and on paper. But writing about my favorite topic: MTGO and MTG has been painful and hard and I have avoided doing it. It does not help that it is still hard to start an article because I have to open a non-firefox/non-ie browser to get my work to save, but that is a minor obstacle. The real stumbling block has been my dissatisfaction with Magic Online and my own desire to not be "that guy" who only writes negative things about the game I love.

Wurmcoil Engine Token
OK Acrylic is tough with details in small spaces...Wurms!


And While there HAVE been some improvements in the state of the client for the most part it has been pretty dismal to watch my card collection of 20k + objects go from a moderate value of over $2k to less than half that because of the ever sinking shrinking MTGO economy. On the other hand a few months ago, influenced in no small part by reading Joe Fiorini's awesome entry level Vintage Articles (go read them asap) I started committing my collection's value more and more towards Vintage format playables. I have 7 of the 9 Power (Time Walk and Mox Ruby are still hold outs because those are my least favorites), the Forces, many dual lands, fetches (thanks to Khans block), and a number of staples.

Down below my OP ED section, I have a section for my Vintage lists which you will see are varied and plentiful.

Freed from the Real

In addition to my economic woes, I have been a little bummed because after Joshua stepped down from my favorite podcast Freed From the Real, I was hoping to nab one of the Cohost spots and instead it went to the inimitable and voluble Adam Clayton who is in many ways a much better fit than I. I, frankly sulked for a while and any thoughts of writing something would get shouted down in my head by my inability to get past that. Then I decided to actually have a talk with AJ about it. I mean we've been friends for 6+ years. If I can't tell him how I feel by now, what's the point? And he was like..."well you quit the (facebook Puremtgo writers) group and we didn't know what to think." (I am paraphrasing this conversation for convenience's sake.) That day AJ, Adam and I got together and did an episode and it was a blast and I felt even more badly than before that I had been such a child about the whole thing.

 

I mean, let's face it. Stuff does not go our way all the time. In fact most of the time, we have to hope and pray to be lucky to catch breaks. And here I was ironically blowing stuff up without even checking to find out the whole story. Which as it turns out is that I (pending my lack of tantrums in the future) am going to sometimes make appearances on there and fun will be had. Or else. At least that is the plan.

Apologies
Meanwhile I feel like I owe my readers and friends a mea culpa. I have let you down by not being in your life as I was last year and for that I am sorry. I hope I can manage to dredge together interesting stuff to talk about in future articles so that I don't take quite so long to write again but I know I live a somewhat rollercoaster existence both emotionally and practically (though thankfully not actually. Living on a Rollercoaster would be sick making very quickly.) Here are some Mandalas I did by way of an apology:


Acrylics on index cards with sharpies and pens. Done in the style of Mandalas but not traditional designs.

 

Opinion Editorial  Section

Outrage
Are you sick of being angry yet? Perhaps you play M:TG to get away from all of that. The media saturation of outrage I mean. It seems like every single day someone is yelling about something, somewhere and it sure is noisy. And wouldn't it be great if everyone just calmed down and stopped being so darned upset? I dunno, I get this sentiment but I also get being outraged and feeling powerless and wanting to vent. WeCantBreathe, Baltimore, Ferguson, Olympia, Pride Parades, Flags, Mexican Americans vs Donald Trump. They all are valid events for those involved in them even if you don't get the reason for all the hoopla.

Surely, when someone complains about the level of outrage they are really saying "shut up and sit down!" and "don't rock the boat!". Which are ways in which they protect their sense of the status quo. "Everything is really OK, the outrage is manufactured and of no significance"...or is it?

Blindness
There is a certain willfulness in ignoring the suffering of others and denying that it exists when the proof is in front of you. But there is also a willfulness in choosing to be blind to more subtle forms of suffering. It isn't that the blind ones are bad or evil acting folks. They may in fact be very wonderful people once you get past their fears and prejudices and denial. But they are doing harm by not seeing the harm in passive acceptance of things that oppress others. "But I am oppressed by my job and my life, what about me?" This isn't what I am talking about. Yes being an adult in general sucks and we all try (or not) to figure how we fit in this society as adults but some have bigger obstacles than others...

Privilege
For many people who suffer in their own lives, the suffering of others must pale by comparison. That is not of course the ideal. We are often taught by those who love us, that compassion and empathy are important factors in our own happiness. But for many in positions of privilege there is a wall between them and those they care about and everyone else. It is one where they walk down the street and do not fear harassment because of their skin color or gender or orientation. Where they get respect based on their gender and or skin color because the power relationships are geared towards them getting this respect and it is taken for granted. In fact if they suffer at all any reversal of that power position they may get outraged. "How dare you! Do you know who I am??!! Obviously you don't or you wouldn't be causing me this trouble." I know that this isn't most of us. We aren't ridiculous figures worthy of contempt. But at the same time we may act this way in little ways and not see how we are treating others differently than we would accept ourselves.

Truth vs Can't
It is a sad fact that some of those who experience these things defend their positions with rhetorical cant rather than speaking the truth of their situation. Rather than say "I act this way because I am afraid of you changing the status quo so that it hurts me" they say "There is no need to change the status quo." or even more insidiously "What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander" meaning "All lives matter (but mine matters most)." Because if you are ahead in the game, why give anyone else a hand up? And I know again that many of us are not like that but again it is harder to see oppression that you don't have first-hand knowledge of.

Meghan Wolff's article
All of the above points are in preparation of talking about the little tempest stirred up last week by Meghan Wolff's article on the inequity facing women in magic. To which Jim Davis responded with a patronizing take down of her premise by essentially saying that there is nothing wrong with the game's slant towards women. Because it is expected of all players that they be respectful and courteous to everyone. Except that there is a subtle problem here. And AJ Sacher pointed it out in his response to Jim's article. Point by point. (And another rebuttal by Anastacia Tomson hit on some good points too. And even Maro chimed in with a really nice analogy in response to a comment regarding these articles.)

For the record, I don't think Cedric Philips, the SCG editor who posted Jim's article should have pulled it. And I am glad he restored it. And I honestly don't think Cedric has anything to apologize for in doing his job as editor and posting the article. It was well written and if erroneous in premise was not completely without merit. Opinions like Jim's have value. If only to display what needs to be worked on. 

The fact is, as AJ Sacher puts so well, we must push back against the resistance to change, inherent among those of privilege. Because change must come. The sarcastic solution proposed of "give them byes" is not even close to the mark of what needs doing. 

And it may well be impossible to FORCE change of the sort needed (and highly likely to be undesirable) because what is needed is that men go out of their way to be respectful to women players and not attempt to marginalize them or objectify them instead of just accept them. Acceptance is the thing missing from the tourney scene. And some of that already happens. But...

Dr Michelle Bush at the First Women's Invitational at Neutral Ground

The Mighty Dr. Bush
Years and years ago, hailing from the far off land of Boston, Massachusetts (and surrounding environs) came a legendary team called Your Move Games. And among these giants stood a valiant warrioress and innovator, Dr. Michelle Bush (of Trix fame). Michelle once complained on IRC about the negative attention she often received just going to a normal limited tourney. Men would offer to help her build her decks and mansplain any rules interactions she might need. Never mind her own skill and status as a pro. 

At the time I thought that was an indication that we had too many immature guys playing here in Neutral Ground NY and that surely it would improve as more women became involved in the tourney scene. But the numbers of female tourney players remained low and what can one person do right? And the harassment of Dr. Bush and other female pros did not stop merely at the venue doors but followed them online with various misdeeds that I won't get into here for the sake of not digging up old wounds.

But the years have not really changed the pattern. The majority of players are male (62% overall and 90% of Tourneys.) Women play at the pro level but are much rarer and when they get attention it is often for their looks or who they are dating rather than what they are playing and their wins.

Attendance vs Interest
There is an argument posited that women don't attend tourneys because they are not interested. After all Tourney Magic is in many ways a dominance game and men are more often trained to be domineering or dominant while women often assume roles of submissiveness or servility because it is how they are raised. (And in some minds the natural order of things I assume?) Well that isn't an issue we as mere gamers can address. The scope of social change is so large and beyond us and we are merely entertaining ourselves and maybe winning some money back while doing so, right?  But the claim is actually false. I can't tell you the many women I've met who are super competitive, smart, good at math, logical and capable opponents in any game they put their minds to. And they win prizes too and even whole tourneys just like any guy. The difference is women are not typically given complete access to the good ole boys club.

Opinion Wrap up
I am positing that we can make a difference by changing our attitudes. That is all. Don't give extra byes or unearned rewards. Just change the attitude that the pretty woman in the hot attire is there merely for your visual pleasure. Or the woman who doesn't fit your ideal for a mate is somehow gross and unworthy of any attention. Or that women are only interested in "womanly" things (whatever they are). Magic being a boys thing couldn't be one of them. Instead make no assumption and be welcoming. Open your spiritual arms and accept women as a natural inclusion in any tourney setting and I expect you will see more of them.

And don't accept jerk level behavior from those around you. Yeah I know, many an introverted player wants nothing to do with confronting the alpha male who loudly proclaims something off color or just plain rudely. Because there could be physical conflict. But that isn't really necessary. If enough men don't accept bad behavior it will become less of a thing and encourage a more genial experience for everyone.

Sure it would be great (I would consider it progress even) if we had more casters and streamers and correspondents and commentators of the feminine persuasion but really what we need is to stop separating ourselves from women, emotionally, mentally and socially. In the same way we have accepted (by and large) the LGBTQX community we need to expand our acceptance to the "fairer" sex. And I realize this may be subtle enough some of you are likely to say "but we do that anyway and look no tangible results."  But the fact is YOU may and I may but the vast majority of us males do not. The evidence is anecdotal I suppose. If you really insist on only hard data, because you don't take the words of those women who have written and spoken about this, I guess you will have to do extensive surveys of the women (38% of the whole) who play magic casually and get them to candidly answer questions about why they don't attend tourneys more often (if at all.)

But I am willing to bet that once that more scientific method of finding the data is done, the conclusion will be the same. And if it isn't, what harm has been done by expanding your horizons? I dare say none worth mentioning. In the meantime, I will leave off this topic with the following thought: The status quo is rarely fair for all. It is in the interest of the socially conscious individual to find ways to improve upon it for all and move it towards a more fair society. Not because, it is the moral thing to do (which it certainly is) but because it can't help but make your place in society more stable and happier because the better adjusted everyone is, the better your own position will be. And this is not a requirement or request for herculean efforts. Just little things like kindness and consideration, in the every day. Vigilance against isms and ists, not condemnations mind you, simply vigilance with an eye towards pulling up your fellow human beings rather than stepping over them and ignoring them.

A Vintage Too Sweet...
Vintage is the word for well-aged wine, ready to drink. The better the vintage in theory the better the aroma, taste and enjoyment of the drink. I don't drink now and I never liked wine when I did, preferring liquors and beers that gave me the sought after high which was the reason for my drinking. I've been 31 (32 years come September 8th) sober and while I still struggle with my addictive personality it is typically within the confines of safer environs than alcoholism and drug addiction these days.

But lo and behold I have found another addiction within this game we call magic. One I thought I'd kicked when I sold my Mox Sapphire to Neutral Ground for $90 in the late 90s. Vintage Format has a lot of interesting stuff going on in it of late. On this very site have been a spate of articles talking about the changes in the format. The bloom of creature-based decks vs the traditional Oath/Show combo decks and Shops/MUD prison/stax decks. (We have a new author Wappla whose 2 articles on Mentor builds have been quite insightful. And why I might not agree with her analyses completely she has a lot of good things to say.)

I began dabbling in Vintage last year at the advent of the Power 9 and quickly obtained some of the crucial cards (Library, the Tutors, etc) but mainly I was still trying to put together a Shops variant I could both play and enjoy. I have a love hate relationship with stax/prison style decks so after a little tinkering in that direction I dropped those lists like hot potatoes. I also tried various forms of aggro affinity (with Steel Overseer, Genesis Chamber, Skullclamp) but found them to be entirely unsatisfactory. And I was almost finished with the format when something funny happened.

As I mentioned above I was at a crisis point a few months ago where I saw the MTGO prices slding into an abyss of never ending doom and was contemplating selling out and using some of the proceeds to pay Cape Fear Games for physical cards. (I got a nifty play mat and some commander staples from them not too long ago by the way and I highly recommend if you need cards and accessories check out their credit for credit policy.)

At this time I was undecided and I started reading Joe's articles and realized there were overlaps between my collection and what he was building and I got to thinking about it. My old vintage decks were almost entirely unpowered. I had one Mox Jet and a Twister which I almost never included because Timetwister is a card you almost never want to cast when your opponent gets most of the benefit from it.

I will probably never join a Daily Event with them, but I have been having a ton of fun with following decks in the Tourney Practice room:

 

Mentor Knight #1
A Vintage Format list by Winter.Wolf
 


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Sideboard:
 
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As you can see the numbers are very much 1 ofs and the focus may be a little scattered. This is one of the first Vintage Mentor decks I played around with and I added in some Meddling Mages and a Knight of the Reliquary to give the deck some punch because Monastery Mentor by itself was not enough. This was also before I owned 4 of them. The sideboard here is full of ideas I had for combatting the various decks I was running into. Cage for Oath/Dredge, StP for Blightsteel and other singular threats, Supreme Verdict for the fair decks trying to win with creatures and counter back up. Bribery again for those singular threats. (Telemon Performance) for the occasional Tendrils/Storm decks because many run no creatures. Mizzium mortars for mirror match ups. Balance for the mirror and shops which tends to field a bunch of guys. Energy Flux also for Shops/MUD. Fallout for Goblins, Elves, and the myriad fair creature decks. Blightsteel as an alt win con vs decks that sideboard well against mentor. Corrosion vs Shops/MUD. Burning Wish main deck had some influence over the choices but I found that I almost never cast it for what I wanted in a timely manner. Of course one of the problems with a plan to use a restricted card is that the format is filled with decks running counter spells and having some of your own is no guarantee you will resolve the spells you want to. The burning wish plan might be a bad one.

In some of the later versions I swapped Dack Fayden to the sideboard partially because he is most effective against power and shops matchups. And if your opponent plays island, island, Lord of Atlantis or the like you are less likely to do well with a Dack on turn 2-3.

Next up I switched out red and tried a more pure Bant build, focusing on lands. I don't own 4 wastelands. I actually own the one I have because I had a fit of "lets waste some tix" and opened two packs of TPR when the packs hit a low point and opened one. Otherwise I'd be probably not running Crucible of Worlds at all. As it turns out Ghost Quarter is only sometimes effective. Many more decks I expected run basic lands which puts a crimp in the land denial plan.

 

Gushing Mentor
A Vintage Format list by Winter.Wolf
 


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Sideboard:
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This sideboard was a little more focused with Null Rod hate for opposing Vault/Key and Shops/MUD since I kept running into those types of decks a lot. More plows to help with the big creature problem and Tinker/Blightsteel as a sb for decks hating on Mentor. In addition 3 Faerie Conclaves to give some added manlands to sneak over ground pounders. Serum Visions ended up being swapped for preordains but this is an older list where they were the ones I had in there.

Then I started rereading about old fish decks and Modern Masters 2015 was in full swing so I got some Bitterblossoms and Dark Confidants and built a deck around them. This time no Gush (because I didn't want to hit those with Bob during my upkeep.) And I added in red and black of course.

 

5c Mentor Fish
A Vintage Format list by Winter.Wolf
 


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Sideboard:
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Once again I went with the Burning Wish styled Sideboard but some choices were hard and I ended up adding things that were not awesome like Silent Departure which I reasoned would give me another use once I cast it after wish. But the reality is when I fetched it, it was to shore up Force of Will. I never fetched Tendrils for the combo win because I never had a turn where that would be practical, same with will. I did Praetor's Grasp several games and ended up taking out Time Vault because they had no other sure thing win cons that I could see. Not that Vault/Key by itself is a winner. You still have to actually WIN the game but with infinite turns it is supposed to lock things up for you. I also Counciled once to exile a Jace so that I could safely play my mentor.

But the biggest elephants in this deck are the Soul Wardens. Why did I include those??! You might fairly ask. Well because I found myself dying to the various sources of damage in my deck which when added up + a bolt or two from my opponent were lethal. Soul Warden hedges that bet and takes the sting out of Bitterblossom. Not to mention gives a little reach vs goblins and other creature decks while allowing those Mentor tokens to do just one more duty. And I swapped out the Knight of the Reliquary for Trygon Predator since I felt like artifact locks were a problem for this deck.

While I enjoyed playing with Bob and Bitterblossom I have to admit the deck was more fun than good. Which is OK But I decided to try a different take on Fish going with Bant instead.

 

Bant Mentor Fish
A Vintage Format list by Winter.Wolf
 


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Again I took out black and red and focused on Bant creatures. This time with an eye towards hate bears and the like. Specifically Qasali Pridemage which wrecks a lot of plans in Vintage just by being a disenchant on a stick. Of course he is also a beat stick and with Noble Hierarchs gives your little guys a bit more oomph when they hit. Since I was focusing more on Bant I decided to add Gush/Bond back in and that served me pretty well. Being able to Gush in response to an enemy Wasteland or other land destruction effect or in response to a spell so as to better be able to answer that spell (with misdeed or force) is really awesome. Trygon Predator did so well in the previous deck that I felt 2 main deck was justified alongside the Qasali. I reduced the number of Mentors to three because of space and I wanted to have at least one Clique.

I got several concessions when I cliqued during my opponent's draw phase, and took their combo or heavy hitter piece and they got something else instead. I did find that clique can backfire, when your opponent has a Charbelcher and you take it but they draw another anyway. That was unfun. Charbelcher is the sort of card you might think would be weak to this deck but it really isn't. It goes off at instant speed on their turn and unless you have some way to deny their mana sources they will just go off in response to your removal. That's one reason for the main deck Null Rod.

Null Rod is a card I hate seeing on the table because I want to be able to tap my own moxen. But having it there prevents all kinds of horrible shenanigans that your opponents may pull. Goblin Charbelcher is only one. Vault/Key is pretty common but also Mindslaver is not fun to sit through. Especially when they have the combo that lets them keep recurring it.

I have also been tinkering with Pox, Bomberman (Tasigur + Mentor is a combo right? RIGHT??) and Survival builds. Those decks are hardly new or intriguing at the moment so I will wait till I have more solid lists to share with you before writing about them.

 

Fine writers and other Puremtgo things
Even though I have not been writing regularly for the site of late, I have been keeping up on reading the articles (and commenting where I've felt appropriate) and I have noticed an upward trend in the quality of articles of late. I will be perfectly frank and tell you the draft articles that come out (especially the video only ones) are not my cup of tea. (My ideal of a great Drafting/Limited article was set by Godot(Ryan Spain) long ago so don't take that too badly.) But aside from those there has been an almost daily influx of readable enjoyable entertainment.

With the return of Flippers_Giraffe, the advent of IslandSwamp (Joe Fiorini)'s Vintage series, CalmLittleBuddy's awesome journey to Providence (and beyond), Wappia's articles on Vintage Mentor, Adam Clayton's usual fine fare and Oliver Law's excellent Modern Man articles I feel like PureMTGO.com has never been better. Of course the staples of the site are keeping up the quality too (such as FFTR and SOTP by Pete Jahn) I attribute that partially to Joshua Claytor, our esteemed editor and content manager and partially to just a better community despite a lack of a sense of the same in the client. Rats may have fled our boat but it is hardly sinking and I expect great things to come.

Please keep writing all of you. And if I didn't mention you, it does not mean I haven't enjoyed your articles. Keep them coming and be proud of your efforts. It is a fine body of work.

Until next time,

Magically,
Paul Emerson Leicht, aka Winter.Wolf on MTGO.

13 Comments

In what sense do you think by Cauchy at Fri, 07/03/2015 - 12:53
Cauchy's picture

In what sense do you think that the MTGO economy is shrinkring? And why should it affect the value of your cards?

Has there been a significant drop in the value of eternal cards? If you have a lot of non-eternal cards ie standard and leave them be for 8 month then they will go down in value independent of the size of the economy. So what part if your collection is responsable for the decrease in value?

I think the economy has by Paul Leicht at Fri, 07/03/2015 - 13:09
Paul Leicht's picture

I think the economy has shrunk in lots of small ways. Many of the eternal legal cards prices have gone from holding some value to being penny trash. And the same is true for many modern legal cards and even standard cards. There was a time when Mythics were never under 1 tix (with a couple of weird exceptions like "Mythic" rarity promos that were really common) now it is not hard to find them for cents on the dollar.

Standard rares no longer hold much value unless they are super hot. And it is true that they have a life cycle as expected but it has shrunk immensely from holding value for a year + to I expect much less than 8 months on average though in specifics that could be somewhat wrong.

My eternal collection (non-power) lost a good deal of value ironically after Vintage Masters went "out of print" in September. And never recovered. Heck the mox jet I had cost me 52 tix and dropped almost over night by 20 tix and never recovered.

I have a large and diverse collection and it is only expected that it fluctuates in value but I have found that in the last year or so, many cards that used to go up and down based on normal factors now just go down.

This can't be coincidental. On the other hand I don't have a single explanation for why it is so. I imagine the redemption fees have played a part for some newer sets not retaining value, and the overabundance and subsequent flooding of VMA after speculators sold out probably sunk quite a few staple prices.

And while it hurts someone like me because I don't keep pouring money into my collection, I am sure it is a great thing for someone willing to pay the money into the system now as for example power has never been more obtainable.

Thanks for the commentary/questions.

Welcome back its good to see by Flippers_Giraffe at Fri, 07/03/2015 - 15:54
Flippers_Giraffe's picture

Welcome back its good to see you writing again :)

My favourite format at the moment is Vintage as well its just hard finding players in the just for fun room, I don't think my decks are competitive enough for the TP room, but I'm not really heading in that direction.

In regards to card prices you are defiantly right, I sold my collection when I stopped playing and am now picking up most of the cards for a 3rd of the price even less in some cases. There are a few that have shot up though in price. I think its due to a shift in playing patterns on MTGO, the number of casual players has drasticly shrunk which has resulted in less non tournament cards being purchased any more, the number of tournament players on the other hand has increased making the staples rise and anything else drops to 0.1 tickets if its not in a tournament deck, this is fed further by the increase in drafters.

It's all about supply and demand. The drafters feed the tournament players but the circle is in disrepair due to the lack of casual players picking up what the tournament players aren't interested in.

Yeah though I have noticed by Paul Leicht at Fri, 07/03/2015 - 18:35
Paul Leicht's picture

Yeah though I have noticed some odd outliers where the card isn't played at all but retains super high pricing even through multiple printings and yet others that are heavily played and have only small printings are super cheap.

I do believe it is the casual buyer who has run away in fear or loathing and I am sure they will be back eventually but meantime we suffer for their cowardice.

Any time you feel like a Vintage game hit me up and I will gladly oblige. I do have a few less than good decks that I wouldn't be too happy about losing with in TP.

Nice work, glad to see that by Joe Fiorini at Fri, 07/03/2015 - 21:01
Joe Fiorini's picture
5

Nice work, glad to see that you're writing, playing, and enjoying both of those activities. Vintage is awesome, but I can tell you that even I've been frustrated by some bad-beats at times. I have this burning desire lately to play metagame decks and troll the top dogs as much as possible. Anti-shops, anti delver type decks really. We'll see how that goes!

A long awaited party! I have by CalmLittleBuddy at Mon, 07/06/2015 - 19:44
CalmLittleBuddy's picture
5

A long awaited party! I have been hoping you'd post soon. It has indeed been a long time when I first started reading puremtgo.Com and only dreamt of writing here, I looked forward to your articles.glad you are back!

I love your deck layouts. I'm visual person and so seeing the cards almost like they'd be on my table is great.

I tend to stay out of the political sruff in MtG but support for our female players is so important I have to make my one statement. Anyone who knowingly fosters an environment of exclusivity to this game is ultimately hurting this game. Whether it's exclusion based on gender or race or sexuality, it's counter productive and reduces the number of potentially great players to learn from and play against. Andby exclusion I mean I tentio ally treating others poorly in the hopes they will just leave out of frustration or fear.

I never considered how hateful so efolks in our community are until I listened to a relatively popular female streamer on Twitch tell about how she kept quitting magic because of the negative experiences she had. I have never thought of our larger community it as containing a vocal subset of bigoted idiots til I heard how guys told her she was a stupid girl for making some rookie picks in a draft, made fun of her, refused to help her learn. This is an intelligent, well spoken, normal Magic Player who happens to be female. She sounded like the type of player I'd have liked to hang out with.

But, I guess some idiots still have a 'no girls in gaming' thing. Even in the 21st century. If anything we should be actively encouraging more females to try it. I got hooked into the game by someone teaching me how to really play the way the game should be played. If you know a lady or girl who is interested or probaby would like the game, get them hooked and teach them as best as you can. Bring them to an FNM or PPTQ or even a GP just to feel the excitement.

Okay rant over.

Thanks for the thought provoking article!

I agree with Jim Davis's by MrWishyWashy at Mon, 07/06/2015 - 23:51
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I agree with Jim Davis's standpoint since from personal experience theres just a portion of the Magic player base that are trolls. I have an LGS that is pure toxic and a pretty underwhelming Magic community in my city in general. Plus you can log into MTGO to see how terrible people can be. This isnt to say that all people people who play Magic are terrbile people, but having a vagina doesnt change how crappy certain MTG groups are. I dont have a vagina and I would not bother with some of the MTG players in my city.

Also the MTG Drama in general is just sheet stupidity. If it wasnt for reddit some of these weirdo SJWs would have to get a life. Its kinda Wotc fault for allowing it. I think the ties Wotc has with Hasbro enables them to not care about the community. Hasbro likes when ppl stay in a childish state since it pushes them to buy more product since there spending all their time on magic instead of caring about anything really important.

Hey guys thanks for by Paul Leicht at Tue, 07/07/2015 - 12:22
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Hey guys thanks for commenting. :D

@Joe I think the beats (good and bad) just come a little more often and with more power in Vintage. Counter wars get vicious and convoluted, Flusterstorm is not the end all it seems to be, Pyroblast isn't either. It is always a matter of thought whether to play through counters, whether to counter a specific spell or wait for something worse, and interestingly creatures seem to matter more than I initially thought which is what drew me in.

I acquired Time Walk and Mox Ruby not long after this so my decks have a slightly more complete feel to them but I am still trying to tinker with ideas instead of just playing one well known deck.

@Calmlittlebuddy I'm glad you like the layouts. That is done with a javascript page I modeled after Jamuraa's. http://outofthebrokensky.com/mtgo/decklistgen/deckgen.html

Just put your text only list into the left most text box, and click on the check box under visual list options and it generates HTML and CSS code for you to copy into your article. The only trick here is to make sure you put the CSS inside of a <style> tag set (I put mine at the very top) and make sure you are pasting into the html source not the rich text editor.

@CLB and MrWishyWashy:

Thanks both for weighing in on this discussion.

In my opinion, the "no girls allowed" thing has gone on long enough. There is something to be said for rocking the boat of the status quo and making women feel welcomed.

I agree that the level of drama in this game has risen well above my normal drama tolerance levels (trademark pending) however I see it a little differently than you do MR WW. Calling people SJWs (Social Justice Warriors) when they call out something they dislike does not make them wrong. Name calling and sticks/stones and all that jazz. The ad hominem is the first sign of a weak argument.

The valid points here are: Men get bullied too and some of the men in the community are scumbags.

To answer both in one, for the most part men aren't threatened with rape, sexual assault and other extremely demoralizing crimes on a regular basis. If that was going on, I am certain there would be bloodshed and arrests and it would stop. Women face this all the time and their response has been by and large to walk away. Some of the braver ones find safer venues but lets face it, accepting women into the club has become an issue.

If we REALLY want to cut the drama, just get it done. If you do already then spread the word. Socially speaking, silence is consent. You don't have to be a social justice warrior to want to see community building occur or to help make it happen.

Also, if Mr Davis's only message had only been "yes, we need to be better humans" no one would have disagreed with him. But his message was "nothing to see here, lets move along" when clearly that isn't the case. Lets be less dramatic for sure but also be maybe a little more truthful about the social dynamics here.

There are men who don't want women to compete in the game and they behave abysmally in order to get their way. Don't accept that. Sure, some of these men are the same scumbags that make MTG in your small town unbearable but you don't have to accept that either. Sadly not accepting people's bad behavior is actually doing something and requires some small effort. And you risk people getting angry.

But fearing anger should not be the reason you do nothing. IMHO.

Heres a great way of getting by MrWishyWashy at Wed, 07/08/2015 - 00:24
MrWishyWashy's picture

Heres a great way of getting off the MTG drama, not visiting reddit lol. I think my IQ has dropped since I discovered the MTG reddit. The sub reddit is completely toxic and people really believe the garbage on there has real meaning. All the "issues" in the mtg "community" are all started by a bunch of punks who have no life and just spam reddit all day long with nonsense. I think my life has been better since I stopped visiting that subreddit since that subreddit has no real correlation of what real life mtg is like. My mtg "community" is not that great, but it doesnt represent what mtg life is like worldwide. I been to some stores that are decent to good, but the super garbage ones that have a similar voice to a majority of reddit, yeah just awful for anyones mental being.

Yes, MrWishyWashy... by Fred1160 at Tue, 07/07/2015 - 12:24
Fred1160's picture

I go along with what you said. The social justice warriors came down hard on Jim Davis and I don't think they read or understood his point of view. The sad thing is that if you treat people fairly and equally it will be a huge upgrade for many of them. He pointed out that there is too much bullying and that it's not just women who are on the receiving end of it. WishyWashy is right: there are a lot of game stores that have toxic environments and outsiders (female AND male) are not welcome.
If you check out the comments of female posters to Jim's article you'll see that just about every one of them agreed with him. As one female poster said, "I don't want special treatment. I just want equal treatment."
Here's the basic reason why people opposed Jim's article: because penis. That really sums it up.

I like the foundation of your by wappla at Thu, 07/09/2015 - 00:18
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5

I like the foundation of your lists. I think Tinker, Vault & Key are somewhat weak right now, but Knight is exciting. Life from the Loam and Dack could be a very powerful draw engine and recurring strip/waste effects are something we're always in the market for. Add some number of Regrowths/Snapcasters and a large number of delve spells and the dredging helps find action. Pridemage is similarly great. Clique is criminally underplayed since the Gush tempo decks that most want them have to really strain their manabase to afford them. I think there is a promising archetype here, but I would suggest trimming the fat. I like to play as few bad cards as possible. By bad, I mean cards that in often do nothing (not Null Rod, that actually does nothing). Thada, Mana Vault, Tinker, and Hurkyll's seem quite weak in the maindeck of #3 here.

I would be excited about brewing around a 4c control engine of

2-3 Life from the Loam
2-3 Dack Fayden
3-4 Dig
2-4 Regrowth
2-3 Knight of the Reliquary
2-3 Mentor

It's unclear if one could play a large number of Gush here. With a lot of Regrowths, Gifts becomes an option. The gameplan is to use land destruction and Fish elements to survive the early game, then a powerful recursive tutor/draw engine to be winning turns 4 onwards. Moving to a large manabase is positioning for the Shops matchup. Might be made to work yet.

To some extent I am limited by Paul Leicht at Thu, 07/09/2015 - 11:51
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To some extent I am limited by my collection (as are we all right?) so probably no snappies any time soon but I like some of those ideas. I found recall to be good but not awesome. It saved my bacon at least once vs Vault/Key and more than a few times vs the Mud/Shops lock pieces. And when you can recall your own pieces and replay them for murderous amounts of mentor tokens/prowess pumps it is awesome but those times are rare.

I am definite going to try something a long the lines of your suggestion though I think I am 100% sold on 4x Mentor now. I've never drawn one and said "man if only this was xyz". More Knights + LftL could be great in combo with the sac lands though I wonder if dig + lftl would synergize all that much. I wish I had the 4x Wastelands to really make this thing fly.

Definitely hit me up in client if you want to tinker with ideas.

Yeah, the cost of Wasteland by wappla at Thu, 07/09/2015 - 21:47
wappla's picture

Yeah, the cost of Wasteland is unacceptable. The effect is among the most basic staples of Eternal formats.