12/10/2010 LD: "Big Sets and Standard"

65 posts / 0 new
Last post
This thread is for discussion of this week's Latest Developments, which goes live Friday morning on magicthegathering.com.
I'm gonna take a stab that the mystery green card is Predatory Urge.  It works pretty well with infect.
I think it's Canopy Cover
don't count out quest for renewal
I, um, don't understand the concept of using the casual room as a metric for Standard.
I'd also guess it's Canopy Cover, although Quest for Renewal crossed my mind as I was looking through the cards too. A third, less likely, option that I noticed is Beast Hunt, which I mention almost solely because I can't recall ever seeing or hearing of this card before, so it would amuse me if it was good.

Almost all of the other possibilities for goodness in Infect seem to be pump effects, and although I do think Quest for the Gemblades would be a good inclusion, I think it's too much of a pump effect to be what he was talking about in the article.
Rules Nut Advisor
I was going to say Boar Umbra, but he specifically states it's not a pumping effect, so I think that counts out Quest for Renewal as well.  In any event, both of those are really casual cards--I can't see either being viable in Standard.  Canopy Cover seems plausible, but the deck would still seem to suffer from being slow. I  mean, yes, Infect means he opponent starts at 10 while you start at 20, but that doesn't matter if they're hitting you for 6 per turn while you're doing 1. 
All is forgotten in the stone halls of the dead. These are the rooms of ruin where the spiders spin and the great circuits fall quiet, one by one.
I'm pretty sure that it is Nature's claim. It gets rid of artifacts and enchantments cheaply and what is 4 life to an infect deck? This is why I like to use Invigorate in my casual infect deck. It is amazing! 
Irresistible Prey to make it so that only one of your creatures can be blocked?

Sorcery, G
Target creature must be blocked this turn if able.
Draw a card.


The only other good option that I saw was Gigantiform, but apparently the card doesn't pump.
I, um, don't understand the concept of using the casual room as a metric for Standard.



The idea is that contrasts between the casual room and top tournament decks serve as one specific metric for Standard, namely, what cards do people like and want to use, but aren't "good enough" or haven't found "good enough" decks. 

If a card/deck is immensely popular in the casual room, then obviously lots of people like it and are paying attention to it.  If it's not putting up any significant tournament showing, then (although we know from its casual popularity that a lot of people are experimenting with it) we can infer that its power level just isn't living up to its popularity, whether because it just doesn't have it or because (as Tom implies for G/B infect) key cards haven't been tried and/or released yet.

Makes sense to me, and it makes sense that it's something that Wizards would keep an eye on.


Okay.  That makes a bit of sense, actually.

I'm a bit surprised that Mimic Vat and Trinket Mage weren't mentioned as examples of SoM cards being played in Standard. Kuldotha Rebirth was also worth mentioning as it has a deck based on it.

I think SoM is a little too self-centric for its own good. Great story, interesting mechanics, but most of the set won't be nearly enough for Constructed play for the time being. Both Metalcraft and Infect are too weak right now.

"If the highest level of competition you play is Friday Night Magic, then the meaning of "strong enough to win a tournament" might be quite different."

I would say this depends heavily on the FNM being considered. Many FNMs are heavily competitive with the top tables playing Pro-level decks. If your FNM is such that your GB Infect deck can win the whole thing and not go 0-2 Drop in a sea of Valakut Ramp and Jace Control, then good for you.

I agree with Nature's Claim. Also Turntimber Basilisk seems like a good way to force damage through.

My suggestions for the "key green" card (in order):

1) canopy cover
2) vines of vastwood
3) quest for the gemblades
4) prey's vengeance
5) groundswell

honorable mention: nature's claim, but only as a sideboard card.



This was a fairly candid assessment of standard by Tom, to be applauded for its honesty. Stepped around the mythic issue (eg. half of the cards mentioned as making an impact were the overly represented mythics), but not in a way that jarred.

I'm voting for nature's claim for 2 reasons:

1) obvious offensive use with little to no downside
2) excellent for use on your artifact infectors (lightning bolt on your necropede? natures claim it for 4 life instead!)

While the card alone won't WIN the game for you, it does significantly improve survivability.

canopy cover is a strong contender as well. While it doesn't pump your guys, it makes sure they connect... and then pretty much any pump spell will do

Edit: after thinking about it more, it may be ancient stirrings. Mostly, cause its an excellent fetch card. Consider it can fetch any of your artifact infectors, a forest, or a nice equipment card like infiltration lens or my personal favorite livewire lash (pump spells are extra funny with that thing out)

I'm gonna take a stab that the mystery green card is Predatory Urge.  It works pretty well with infect.





Quick rules question on this. When predatory urge is used, does the creature you target get the counter and then you check its power, or is its power 'locked' when the first ability resolves?
Here's a thought wizards, instead of trying to get players to find one card to make infect playable, why didnt you just print soceries or instants that gave poisions counters? Or maybe a crazy awesome infect planeswalker, one who's ultimate says "you get an emblem that says "all infect creatures get+2/+2 and when you play a creature with infect destroy target creaturer"
Excellent question... I think the former but I'm not 100% sure.

Regarding Kibler's deck at Worlds - I think calling it "an entirely new deck" is stretching it a little. Actually, it's stretching it a lot. I mean, it's a U/W control deck that runs Day of Judgment, Condemn, Gideon Jura, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Mana Leak, Spreading Seas etc. Yes the Squadron Hawks are a genuine innovation for U/W, but calling this deck "entirely new" seems like an overstatement.

And yeah, in keeping with the tone of the article it is interesting to note that all Scars contributes to this 6-0 deck is a singleton copy of Elspeth Tirel in the sideboard (seemingly in there because it's a pet card of Kibler), and two Stoic Rebuttals - and in this case the choice of Rebuttal over Cancel seems purely aesthetic, as his deck runs no artifacts, so these might as well be Cancels.
"Personally, I believe $50 is the roof that someone will pay for a Standard card, Mythic or otherwise." - Ben Bleiweiss, StarCity Games ----------------------------------------------------------

But just to show I can be positive occasionally, I do think the current Standard environment shows just how good a set M11 is for Constructed. Preordain, Condemn, the M11 duals being more popular than the Scars duals, Mana Leak, the Titans, now Squadron Hawk etc. This is definitely one of (if not THE) most impacting core sets ever. That's another problem Scars has - it's coming after such a great, impacting set.

Also, let's not forget that this sort of thing HAS to happen - I mean, why do cards get played in tournament-winning standard decks? Because they are powerful. That means that if you want large numbers of new cards to be adopted when a new set comes out they have to be more poweful than their equivalents in the previous set. Then if you want to do the same thing next year they have to be even MORE powerful and so it goes. Unless you want unending power creep (which is ultimately unsustainable) then you must have blocks that are weaker than their colleague in standard. Scars does this job admirably - and I don't mean that as sarcastically as it sounds.

"Personally, I believe $50 is the roof that someone will pay for a Standard card, Mythic or otherwise." - Ben Bleiweiss, StarCity Games ----------------------------------------------------------
The idea is that contrasts between the casual room and top tournament decks serve as one specific metric for Standard, namely, what cards do people like and want to use, but aren't "good enough" or haven't found "good enough" decks.  



That does make a lot of sense.  On the other hand, here's a consideration that I learned right from Richard Garfield himself: if a concept is more popular it should be slightly weaker to create balance.  (Or at least should have clear weaknesses that hate cards can attack.)


Suppose there are decks A, B, and C.  A's concept is cool and fun and exciting, while B and C are a bit boring.  If all 3 have the same power level, then most people will pick A and it will dominate the metagame population.  But if you make A just slightly less powerful, then some players will move to B and C for power while others stick with A for coolness.  And thus you have a more balanced meta.


(A better way to do this is to have a "negative feedback loop", where B and C players pack hate cards for A.  Or a game that inherently self-adjusts like Rock Paper Scissors. But the year-late-yet-we-congratulate-ourselves answers of Great Sable Stag and Obstinate Baloth prove that Development hasn't been so hot with that.)


Quick rules question on this. When predatory urge is used, does the creature you target get the counter and then you check its power, or is its power 'locked' when the first ability resolves?

It shrinks first.

Edit: after thinking about it more, it may be ancient stirrings. Mostly, cause its an excellent fetch card. Consider it can fetch any of your artifact infectors, a forest, or a nice equipment card like infiltration lens or my personal favorite livewire lash (pump spells are extra funny with that thing out)

That's what I think.  Prime targets would be an equipment or Corpse Cur.  Other stuff you could get but it wouldn't be advantageous to dig for.  Though I wonder if we aren't still in the "not enough good targets" stage without the rest of the block.

If you're on MTGO check out the Free Events via PDCMagic and Gatherling.

Other games you should try:
DC Universe Online - action-based MMO.  Free to play.  Surprisingly well-designed combat and classes.

Planetside 2 - Free to play MMO-meets-FPS and the first shooter I've liked in ages.
Simunomics - Free-to-play economy simulation game.

I don't think it's canopy cover. Flight spell bomb does the same job for 1 mana. Yes it's single use but that's all you need with all the pump a green deck has. It's all about speed and evasion in a green infect deck.
Canopy Cover. 
Goblin Artisans - A Magic Design Blog by GDS2 Contestants and Collaborators
It's Canopy Cover.


I don't think it's canopy cover. Flight spell bomb does the same job for 1 mana. Yes it's single use but that's all you need with all the pump a green deck has. It's all about speed and evasion in a green infect deck.



This is wrong, because evasion is only half the battle. Keeping your creature alive long enough to take a shot is the biggest obstacle in an infect deck. The troll shroud from Canopy Cover is almost worth it alone, but the evasion makes it great.


What's all this rubbish about Nature's Claim? Nonsense. Yes, as a utility card, it's cute in an infect deck. But he's talking about a card that pushes infect into the realm of viability, and a slightly better Naturalize falls WAY short. Yes, play it in your infect decks for all the reasons mentioned in this thread, but don't cry when it fails to win you the game.

Canopy Cover though... if you can stick it onto a creature, you take out the risk of two- or three- for-one ing yourself with those pump spells. I think when combined with Vines of Vastwood, you're gonna see your little infectors' survivability jump up some.

I don't know if it's enough to get it there for infect, but I was very pleased to find this card, and will be revisiting my infect as a monogreen.
What about Turntimber Basilisk?
With a fetch it can just kick the door wide open for your dudes to get through, and it permanently kills blockers, especially of the Wall variety.
Not gonna lie though, I don't play standard so I have no idea what the meta is like at all. 
Canopy Cover seems too obvious - arent people already using that?

Nature's Claim is a cute Sideboard card (reminds me of using Condem while my opponent has a Leyline of Punishment :P), but hardly groundbreaking.

I hadnt considered Ancient Stirrings, but that could be good. I would work as mana fixing (in G/B, since the other options include expensive Fetches or slow Terramorphics etc), and it can find equipment and artifact creatures. I have trouble fitting all the cards I want into an Infect deck as it is though.

Anyway, the reason why I was posting was to say that I love this article and approve it 100%. The style, the content, the revelations, it was all good. Can we have another just like it after each set from now on, please? (maybe even share some of the figures you used, comparing casual to tournament usage of different cards)

Cheers!

~ Tim
I am Blue/White Reached DCI Rating 1800 on 28/10/11. :D
Sig
56287226 wrote:
190106923 wrote:
Not bad. But what happens flavor wise when one kamahl kills the other one?
Zis iz a sign uf deep psychological troma, buried in zer subconscious mind. By keelink himzelf, Kamahl iz physically expressink hiz feelinks uf self-disgust ova hiz desire for hiz muzzer. [/GermanPsychologistVoice]
56957928 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
That makes no sense to me. If they spelled the ability out on the card in full then it would not be allowed in a mono-black Commander deck, but because they used a keyword to save space it is allowed? ~ Tim
Yup, just like you can have Birds of paradise in a mono green deck but not Noble Hierarch. YAY COLOR IDENTITY
56287226 wrote:
56888618 wrote:
Is algebra really that difficult?
Survey says yes.
56883218 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
You want to make a milky drink. You squeeze a cow.
I love this description. Like the cows are sponges filled with milk. I can see it all Nick Parks claymation-style with the cow's eyes bugging out momentarily as a giant farmer squeezes it like a squeaky dog toy, and milk shoots out of it.
56287226 wrote:
56735468 wrote:
And no judge will ever give you a game loss for playing snow covered lands.
I now have a new goal in life. ;)
Excellent question... I think the former but I'm not 100% sure.

Regarding Kibler's deck at Worlds - I think calling it "an entirely new deck" is stretching it a little. Actually, it's stretching it a lot. I mean, it's a U/W control deck that runs Day of Judgment, Condemn, Gideon Jura, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Mana Leak, Spreading Seas etc. Yes the Squadron Hawks are a genuine innovation for U/W, but calling this deck "entirely new" seems like an overstatement.

And yeah, in keeping with the tone of the article it is interesting to note that all Scars contributes to this 6-0 deck is a singleton copy of Elspeth Tirel in the sideboard (seemingly in there because it's a pet card of Kibler), and two Stoic Rebuttals - and in this case the choice of Rebuttal over Cancel seems purely aesthetic, as his deck runs no artifacts, so these might as well be Cancels.

If you read the report you'll find that Elspeth saved him at least one game.
Canopy Cover seems too obvious - arent people already using that?

Nature's Claim is a cute Sideboard card (reminds me of using Condem while my opponent has a Leyline of Punishment :P), but hardly groundbreaking.

I hadnt considered Ancient Stirrings, but that could be good. I would work as mana fixing (in G/B, since the other options include expensive Fetches or slow Terramorphics etc), and it can find equipment and artifact creatures. I have trouble fitting all the cards I want into an Infect deck as it is though.

Anyway, the reason why I was posting was to say that I love this article and approve it 100%. The style, the content, the revelations, it was all good. Can we have another just like it after each set from now on, please? (maybe even share some of the figures you used, comparing casual to tournament usage of different cards)

Cheers!

~ Tim



I haven't seen Canopy Cover in any decklists at all. Maybe I'm just not looking in the right places. Anyone else seen it?
I think that the last poll is decieving.

I personally think that Mirrodin gets split into two planes, and we get both Mirrodin Pure AND New Phyrexia. 

-MT Head
Oh, and for the green card, I think that it is Ancient Stirrings.

The card doesn't look like much, but the infect deck needs to have a 2 drop, and stirrings will help it get one.  (ichorclaw or necropede)  If the opening hand has a 2 drop, then a corpse cur is pretty nice.  Alternately, there are other nice artifacts that can help the deck get in there.

-MT Head
If you read the report you'll find that Elspeth saved him at least one game.



I did read the report. He also mentions it in the deck tech, which I also watched. I know that. I'm not saying it's useless or shouldn't be in the deck. I'm saying that he originally put it in because he has an affection for that card, and the previous Elspeth. The deck was built by Brad Nelson who gave it to Kibler without the Elspeth, Kibler put it in. Nelson is not running Elspeth. In turn, Nelson got the Idea from Asahara, who also didn't play Elspeth.

I repeat, I'm not saying it doesn't make sense in the deck, I'm saying I suspect the reason it is in there is at least in large part because it's a pet card of his. Nothing more nothing less.

"Personally, I believe $50 is the roof that someone will pay for a Standard card, Mythic or otherwise." - Ben Bleiweiss, StarCity Games ----------------------------------------------------------
I think its interesting that he went to the trouble of trying to get people to find it.  I can't recall a time that Wizards so blatantly pushed that they wanted an archetype to be played.  Why interfere in Standard like this?
I can't recall a time that Wizards so blatantly pushed that they wanted an archetype to be played.  Why interfere in Standard like this?

As much as Wizards denies it, R&D really has been "building decks for us" since roughly forever.
Thus, when someone does something R&D didn't intentionally engineer (such as Upheaval/Tog, or Raffinity, or even something as innocent as using Liquid Metal Coating as red enchant removal), and begins having runaway success with it (Academy), R&D starts to get snippy.

For historical "proof", just look back at how many times Time Vault was errata'd, only to quickly become broken again until the next errata, then quickly becoming broken again.
I'm surprised no one has mentioned Beastmaster's Ascension yet.
I can't recall a time that Wizards so blatantly pushed that they wanted an archetype to be played.  Why interfere in Standard like this?

As much as Wizards denies it, R&D really has been "building decks for us" since roughly forever.
Thus, when someone does something R&D didn't intentionally engineer (such as Upheaval/Tog, or Raffinity, or even something as innocent as using Liquid Metal Coating as red enchant removal), and begins having runaway success with it (Academy), R&D starts to get snippy.

For historical "proof", just look back at how many times Time Vault was errata'd, only to quickly become broken again until the next errata, then quickly becoming broken again.

I'm not debating that they build archetypes at all, just that they don't normally try to get you to play them in standard like this.  I think they should build archetypes, not all mind you, but a few obvious and leave the rest to be found.  Still, when one doesn't work out I don't remember anyone ever trying to get it to be more popular by suggesting that there was more to find.  That is the part that strikes me as odd.  Its a really concerted effort to try and get it into Standard.  I find that puzzling.

As an aside, yes a lot of cards get errata'd to hell and back but lets be honest, the game changes some of that is going to happen.  Time Vault is but one example.  Needs to be done from time to time to keep the format healthy.  Anyone who played through Raffinity knows that... God that was horrible.
Looking at this, has anyone considered bear umbra? Sweet pump and the untapped lands allows you to keep mana up for pump spells
 

3,000th post: September 5, 2010 4,000th post: March 24, 2012

Winner of the YMTC Ravnica War of the Guilds contest as guild Dimir.

Snapcaster Mage is the best card of all time. How do you deal?

I'm surprised no one has mentioned Beastmaster's Ascension yet.



I considered and dismissed it. 

The thing about infect is that there is a certain pace to it.  The ascension would actually throw off that pace.

If you want another reason, by the time that you've attacked with 7 infect creatures, the game should be decided one way or another.  You are only going for 10 poison counters, with pump effects around after all. 

I really think that it has to be ancient stirrings.  It sets you up without messing with the necessary curve. 

-MT Head

He said it wasn't pump, so that's why people discounted Bear Umbra.  I don't think it would be Canopy Cover since he said it was in Zendikar and CC is in WorldWake.  What about Savage Silhouette.  1G 2colorless to give target creature +2/+2 and "Pay 1G 1Colorless to regenerate this creature." 

Toss that on a plague stinger and you've got a 3/3 regenerating flyer.    I do like Predatory Urge as a possibility.  Shrink down your opp's creatures. 

Not sure if that's enough really to make infect viable in Standard.

I agree with the previous posters on the thought that it's sort of odd that R&D would be laying out such broad hints to make an archetype more playable in Standard.
He said it wasn't pump, so that's why people discounted Bear Umbra.  I don't think it would be Canopy Cover since he said it was in Zendikar and CC is in WorldWake.  What about Savage Silhouette.  1G 2colorless to give target creature +2/+2 and "Pay 1G 1Colorless to regenerate this creature." 



I think someone said already that it wasn't a pump spell... hmm, let me see if I can find it... Tongue out

Also, it was in "Zendikar block" which includes Worldwake and Rise.
he said zendikar block 
Hm, the article appeared kinda pathetic. Wizards is obviously very displeased with scars performance, but Tom was still trying to prove really hard to customers that scars isn't weak sauce. Feel sorry for him.

Also, I'm okay with weaker sets now and then. What I don't like are articles filled with a million understatements. Makes it hard to take it seriously.
IMAGE(http://www.projektstarwars.de/forum/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=16432&dateline=1299412590) Fallen Star Verlag Play Legacy! Decks: Legacy Natural Order/Hulk EDH Iname, Death Aspect / Rosheen Meanderer Casual Elves! I petition for the removal of the mythic rarity.
Sign In to post comments