Knowing your opponent's deck before match, not so bad?

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Hello there,

Is there anyone else that doesn't see a problem with keeping your opponent's deck choices visible in the lobby? At least on XBLA, the only version where it is visible apparently. It's not like you're not going to find out what your opponent is playing a minute later anyway.

As a compromise I would suggest removing deck display in ranked match lobbies, if only to appease those who will complain about the endless switching of decks to achieve some kind of advantage, and keeping decks visible in the player match lobbies.

Of course with a full deck editor encompassing all 700+ cards this would become academic. At that point I would like to be able to name my own decks and give them pictures for others to see in the lobby.

So please seriously consider any and all changes that are made to DOTP 2012.
I actually prefer knowing my opponent's deck beforehand in this game due to changes in strategy that could effect how you mulligan at the start of a match. The downside is the people who end up switching their decks over and over just to try and counterpick.

Possible solution, keep the decks hidden until countdown before a match begins. Show the decks then, but force the countdown to be locked in and no further changes can be made.
One option would be to force the user to choose their deck before they enter the lobby, although this would have to be thought about quite a bit since forcing anyone to do anything is a very tricky thing to do.

Also, ATM I play Machinations as mono blue, it woud be a stretch to call this deck Machinations.
Visible deck choices isn't just an issue with XBLA: happens on PSN too. Also, with the PS3 there is no distinction between "ranked" matches and "player" matches.
If you sit down at a table to play someone you aren't going to know what they have in their deck and so you can't muligan until you get the cards you'll need up front. 

The games is much more fun when there's no counter picking or muligan set up.

It just doesn't belong in the game and they can't get the patch out fast enough if you ask me. 
Sorry I dont like that idea at all. The deck switching is so bad, ive stopped joining games, and only host now. And, people will still try and counter my deck, or, they will just pick my deck to mirror match.
So what I do now, is try and start off picking koths deck, I figure they will see koth, think im terrible, and feel comfortable picking their favorite deck, then I switch back to wielding steel, which is my favorite deck.
I dont like the idea of anyone ever knowing their opponents deck. Even just before the game is about to begin, it feels too cheap, in real world situation, you wont know your opponents deck until a turn or two in.
Let's not bring paper magic into this, since we aren't playing paper magic. We are playing an updated version of what was essentially in the beginning an expensive marketing ploy by the Wizards to bring more people into MTGO, and which has become something more.

I don't like the idea of different ranked and player lobbies, but the system is firmly entrenched within XBLA and although it can be easily ignored by devs, most do choose to have these two lobby types...

I suppose in the end, a simple option for the host of the lobby to decide whether or not to show the decks is probably the simplest and best solution.
Not only do I prefer my opponent not knowing what I play, I also prefer not knowing what he plays. Not knowing which deck he has can influence what you drop down up to turn 3/4, which can influences the game up till the end, as it should.

With knowledge like that, it throws a big part of decisionmaking out the window and it's one step closer to the cards playing themselves as opposed to you playing them. Due to this I only play on Steam for the time being.
I'd like to be able to see my Archenemy teammates and 2HG teammate's deck choices.  Otherwise, no opponent decks.
I hate knowing my opponents deck, it has put me off playing 2-player matches until they fix it. Like Orthanc said it takes away so much of the decision making and really influences your starting hand requirements. It's not so bad in 4-player (although i'd still rather not know) as people can't really counter pick as there is 3 opponents to worry about, i find most people just stick with their initial choice in 4-player unless there are duplicates.

Deck selection in ranked should be blind for everyone except your teammate(s) (i.e. only your 2HG partner could see your deck).  There should also be an option for selecting a random deck.  I'm sick and tired of players joining and mirror matching or leaving when I spin the decks and randomly stop on one that they do not like.  Please, please, please give me a way to make my deck blind in ranked and random when I want.

the only reason I can see them showing the decks is that there are so many legendaries in the AD deck that a mirror match wouldn't be fun. showing the decks would avoid mirrior matches.
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I guess I always figured in real life you'll play your opponent in a best 2 out of 3 match. You won't know his deck at first, but you'll have an idea for game 2, and definately know the most by game 3. Not only that, you'd be able to sideboard accordingly between these games to help improve your matchup. This is where I view a similarity to this game and seeing the opponent's deck. Seeing the opponent's deck means you can mulligan accordingly to possibly improve your matchup against a certain deck. Basically I treat a DotP game as if I were playing game 3 of a match against an opponent. In such a scenario, I'd know some information about their deck. If people don't like this aspect, that's fine, but I think it's a useful advantage that should stay in the game.

However, when it does get fixed, it'll probably be for the best. People won't have to be annoyed because their opponent is picking their least favorite deck to play against, and counterpicking will basically cease to exist. I'll definately miss knowing that extra little bit of information before a game initally begins though.
Guess I'm in the minority here; if they stop allowing you to change your deck selection after seeing your opponent's, I'll probably quit the game shortly thereafter.

The bottom line is that, while the decks aren't as horribly mismatched as they were in DotP09, some of the decks are just vastly more powerful than some of the others, turning some matchups into a waste of time/exercise in losing slowly for the player of the weaker deck.

If I go into match playing something silly like Apex Predators or Dragon's Roar, and I see Realm of Illusion or Vamps on the other side, I'm going to switch decks.  I'm not talking about endless counter-picking, but if my opponent has a top-tier deck, I need to play a top-tier deck as well if I want to have any fun.  (Note: spending 10 minutes being someone's punching bag does not count as "fun")

So what will happen if they hide or lock in deck selection is that playing anything but a top-tier deck will become really unappealing (remember how much fun it was to try Claws of Vengeance in DotP09 once most people had gone over to non-stop Vamps?).  There's enough variety in the top decks in DotP12 that just playing those should stay entertaining for a while, but it will get old much more quickly than it would have otherwise.

---

Bonus Argument:  In paper magic, matches are first-to-two game wins, with sideboarding after game 1, so sideboarded games are more common than not.  Since these matches are "one and done," with no sideboarding, having the ability to change your deck to avoid a bad matchup is actually somewhat closer to the experience of playing "real Magic."

In an in-person game, only a complete loser would see what you play and put his cards away and go home.


While I do like being able to skip a matchup vs Vampires now and then, it's overwhelmed by the annoyance of all the people who try to play little matchup games.


If some decks don'e match up well (hello, Apex!), then the fix for that is to upgrade those decks, not to allow swapping and counter-swapping until the host tries to play gotcha by starting the game.


Besides, the point is moot, as they've already said decks will be hidden in the next patch.

In an in-person game, only a complete loser would see what you play and put his cards away and go home.


And?  That really wasn't my point at all.  In an in-person game, you play game 1 with no knowledge of your opponent's deck, and game 2 (and 3, when applicable) with a deck that has been re-tuned to beat them (I'm assuming here that you're a good player with knowledge of the metagame, and sideboard plans against aggro, control, relevant combos, etc, etc, which I hope you'll agree is fair).

The point, then, is that being able to choose a deck with a better matchup against your opponent for a one-off game (and letting them do the same) is more like a match in paper magic, whereas playing the entire match (1 game) totally blind is less like paper magic.  Obviously it's not the same, and no one said anything about taking your cards and going home.
While I do like being able to skip a matchup vs Vampires now and then, it's overwhelmed by the annoyance of all the people who try to play little matchup games.


I'll take your word for it that that's been your experience; mine has been entirely the opposite.  Right now I can go into matchmaking with a bad deck if I feel like it and get to play a fun game with that deck when my opponent also has a bad deck, while switching out to something more competitive if that's what my opponent wants.  Generally, when that happens my opponent keeps their deck, maybe switches once, and then we start.  I've only gotten into a "little matchup game" once, and I didn't find it too irritating; we just switched around for a few seconds until we had a matchup that we were both satisfied with.  How is that bad if we both (presumably) ended up happy?
If some decks don'e match up well (hello, Apex!), then the fix for that is to upgrade those decks, not to allow swapping and counter-swapping until the host tries to play gotcha by starting the game.


Agreed, but I'm not holding my breath.  ;)
Besides, the point is moot, as they've already said decks will be hidden in the next patch.


Oh well.  I still think it was a mistake when they changed it in '09, and I think it's a mistake now.  It just makes several decks unplayable due to the crapshoot of getting an auto-lose matchup.  I suppose restricting switches to prevent counter-pick wars could work, if other people are really seeing that happen frequently, but the inability to swap a "joke deck" for a "real deck" when you see an opponent loaded for bear is a significant net loss for online fun value, IMO.


The joke deck versus real deck happened all day today to my friend and I in 2HG.  We were both selecting random decks and our opponents were playing thei best decks more often than not.  The only annoying part is that every now and again we got a top tier deck as our random choice only to watch a player, or both, quit.  I honestly did not care which deck I played but having a player leave because I randomly get a top-tier deck is beyond pathetic.  If the random deck was blind and displayed a question mark icon, ?, for my deck at least the opponent would know that I was selecting a random deck and would be more likely to stay and play.  The chances of getting a top tier deck would be the same but at least the opponent would not feel cheated in any way.  It would also allow players to select random decks for the AI opponents as well.  Seriously, we need a random deck option!
The deck switching is so bad, ive stopped joining games


Exactly. I play on XBLA and it's gotten to the point where I want to play ranked games for the superior competition, but the leaderboard-elitists deck switching makes the match-ups so repetitive you can almost predict your opponent's deck choice by whichever you choose to play with. If I'm hosting and I see my opponent switch decks, I immediately hit B to back out. I'm hoping this sends a message about sportsmanship, or something. When I do join games (I have a theory that more experienced players prefer to host while less skilled players tend to join games, but that's anecdotal), I can tell if the host hesitates to start the match when I lock in as 'ready' that they're probably countering. Likewise when I host I hit A immediately, even in seemingly disadvantageous match-ups. I like to imagine I'm sending also sending a message and influencing DotP online etiquette.

...then I switch back to wielding steel, which is my favorite deck.


Oh, so... you're part of the problem? ಠ_ಠ

I'm really looking forward to the first patch when decks go back to the "normal" (as in 2009, as in paper Magic tournaments) hidden style. In DotP 2009 I always got a kick out of trying to guess what deck I was facing based on the first turn. "Oh, a swamp? Vampires again," and then find out they're actually playing discard or Eons of Evil. The suspense was refreshing.
the problem is not that you know what the other person is playing. The problem is that the host can change their deck one sec before they start the match and the other player(s) can't respond back with a deck change before the match starts.

Also if he does the deck change and start match fast you cant even see what deck he has changed to so you are just left in the dark. 

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the problem is not that you know what the other person is playing. The problem is that the host can change their deck one sec before they start the match and the other player(s) can't respond back with a deck change before the match starts.


Agreed; the host potentially gets an advantage in this way.
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ATM I'm looking forward to this patch. Seeing the opponents deck is awful (I changed my opinion here). Some people really seem to be proud of their strategy of counterpicking. And having information about the opponents deck before mulliganing also isn't good for the game. While I like that it's really helpful when playing a deck like Strength of Stone (low tier, but with so many different effects for certain match-ups - mass removal vs. target removal vs. artifact removal vs. illusion killers vs. anti-Garruk combination - ) and increases it's chances to compete with the top decks with a good hand choice, there is also a very negative aspect. Playing e. g. Gideon vs. Chandra gets to mulliganing for the Sword or SFM and giving the game away, if you don't hit one, as the most viable strategy to achieve a win.
I just had to vent somewhere..........seeing decks before the match is a game breaker, ruins the game
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the problem is not that you know what the other person is playing. The problem is that the host can change their deck one sec before they start the match and the other player(s) can't respond back with a deck change before the match starts.

Also if he does the deck change and start match fast you cant even see what deck he has changed to so you are just left in the dark. 



Agreed - seeing decks isn't an issue, changing decks is.

If the host changes their deck then it should 'un ready' all other players. that way there is no bait and switch going on and the non host gets a chance to respond to the change. 
the problem is not that you know what the other person is playing. The problem is that the host can change their deck one sec before they start the match and the other player(s) can't respond back with a deck change before the match starts.

Also if he does the deck change and start match fast you cant even see what deck he has changed to so you are just left in the dark. 



Agreed - seeing decks isn't an issue, changing decks is.

If the host changes their deck then it should 'un ready' all other players. that way there is no bait and switch going on and the non host gets a chance to respond to the change. 



Seeing decks is an issue, as it affects mulligan decisions.
So ventured online on PSN for the first time tonight, and what a sad bunch of .... I entered rooms with Machinations, hardly the strongest of the bunch, for them to quickly shift to Chandra's, Vamps and Illusions all over the place.

Sticking to Steam till it's patched.
Hmmm.. any person who is switching over and over to get the advantage seems like a bad mannered player to begin with. If you surprise them with a deck I think they will just concede. I played a few people on the psn that when their first creature was destroyed they left. Once they no longer have the advantage they will quit like little sissys.
I really wish there was some sort of incentive for not leaving matches early.. or a punishment for doing so.
I used to play a lot of world of warcraft, they had something like that setup.

Most of my wins come from opponent leaving early when he finally sees Im about to be beating him in a few more turns.

It would be hard to come up with something though.. WoW has a deserter effect, when you leave a game early, you cant join another one for x amount of time.
I really wish there was some sort of incentive for not leaving matches early.. or a punishment for doing so.
I used to play a lot of world of warcraft, they had something like that setup.

Most of my wins come from opponent leaving early when he finally sees Im about to be beating him in a few more turns.

It would be hard to come up with something though.. WoW has a deserter effect, when you leave a game early, you cant join another one for x amount of time.



So if a player realizes that they are going to lose and leaves, allowing you to win, you want them penalized for letting you win too early?  Sounds like you are the one with the problem.  Conceding serves a very specific purpose as it allows on player to win without forcing the match to be played out until the very end.  It saves time for both players and typically the end result is the exact same.  What is the problem again?
@ HieroGlyph did you read my comment? If someone concedes because their lord of the unreal was killed 2nd round its annoying. It's the same person who needs a "deck advantage" the person who makes a game and swithes just before it starts. Cry babies....
So ventured online on PSN for the first time tonight, and what a sad bunch of .... I entered rooms with Machinations, hardly the strongest of the bunch, for them to quickly shift to Chandra's, Vamps and Illusions all over the place.

Sticking to Steam till it's patched.

Just started playing ranked the past few days. It happens quite a bit, surprisingly, it's even happening in player matches which I don't really understand.

I suppose if you play ranked you should pick your best deck and it won't matter what you're up against. I'm 5-2 with Strength of Stone beating Vamps and Ancient Depts, and I'm 3-3 with Ancient Depths. Just finished campaign with Sorin's Deck and it's a beast but not as crazy as MoS. I think I'd feel comfortable camping out with that deck but only playing what you think is the most powerful deck just isn't that much fun for me.

If stats for leaderboards were tracked I think it could help encourage folks to play all the decks. If stats were maintained for player matches I don't think I'd play ranked much. I don't know why people are afraid to play ranked with just about any deck (except Apex and Dragon). Right now Blood Hunger is very beatable and the deck I fear most is a lean optimized Chandra.


Edit: XBLA here, it's not just PSN. 
I'm definately glad the upcoming patch is gonna hide the opponents' decks.

Getting a bit tired to see people joining my games with something else and over half of the time switching to Chandra's deck when they see me playing Jace. I don't have anything against playing Chandra with Jace, but I'd like to play against something else too every once in a while. And these aren't even ranked matches.

Other theme I see a lot is someone joining with their deck of choice but then they quit when they see mine.
People switching decks all the time has just forced me to play more consistent decks that are more matchup proof like Steel, Vampires, and Chandra.  Maybe once they hide decks I will go back to playing more varied decks. 

Hiding the opponent's deck will be a welcome fix/patch. Can't wait.

@ HieroGlyph did you read my comment? If someone concedes because their lord of the unreal was killed 2nd round its annoying. It's the same person who needs a "deck advantage" the person who makes a game and swithes just before it starts. Cry babies....



And yet by conceding they are taking the loss whereas fighting for a deck advantage happens prior to the game even starting.  As such the two are not even close to the same thing.  I will agree, and have already in this very thread, that the decks need to be made blind in ranked play.  That being said, conceding is aboslutely fine the way it exists currently.  If you are playing with a 'bad sport' then there is nothing that will fix this issue.  Would you prefer they do what darth does and walk away from the television when they are upset about the matchup or about to lose?  Conceding allows you to win more quickly and an opponenet can quit for any reason they want.  Please give me a single valid reason as to why an opponent should be unable to concede, just one.
This post isn't about accepting defeat properly no matter how bad I want to engage in that topic. Unfortunately it has nothing to do with the posters original thought. Personally I don't think there is such thing as a deck advantage because every playable deck has a counter for another. I find it mildly bad mannered for a person to use the slippery tactic of switching at the start of a match. It even causes some players to concede. In another post I would be happy to explain why conceding until you have the advantage is bad mannered and childish.
Personally I don't think there is such thing as a deck advantage because every playable deck has a counter for another.




This statement supports there being deck advantages. That's the whole point, switch to a counter-deck, or a deck that the opposition can't counter.

Just for clarification, are you saying every deck has one other deck it can counter, or are you asserting that each deck can counter every other deck? I do agree that with 2012 you have a fair shot at winning with any deck against any deck. The only decks I don't feel that way about are Apex and Dragons, they have some glaring weaknesses.       

While not overpowered like MoS, if you switch to Blood Hunger against a non-burn deck you're greatly improving your chances for a win, same goes for Illusions and Unquenchable.

What gets me, if you think you're a good Magic player, why would you want to sit on what you think are the most powerful decks? Why wouldn't you want to prove your skill with the decks requiring more strategy and thought to deck make-up? 
Just to mention tournament play here. Unless your talking very first round play your going to know which deck your opponent's going to play. Just not how they will supplement the deck with their sideboard. Being able to actually know what type of deck your opponent will play before hand is not far removed from actual competitive gameplay. If you construct your deck properly you should have a contingency plan.
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They play best of 3 and use a sideboard adding an entire new dimesion to the game in tournaments so you really can't compare tournaments magic to DotP.
I'm looking forward to the patch were the decks are hidden, I think it will be better that way.
Morgan_X no. There is no deck that just beats another deck all the time because of the style of cards. I'm saying. All of the decks are equal in the fact that certain styles of playing can be used with any deck to beat any other deck. Within them there is an answer to supposed "deck advantages". If its not a single card its a style of play. If I confused you by saying "deck and counter" I'm sorry. My intent was to say in my opinion all of the decks are equal in some way.
"What gets me, if you think you're a good Magic player, why would you want to sit on what you think are the most powerful decks? Why wouldn't you want to prove your skill with the decks requiring more strategy and thought to deck make-up?"

Vouch. "deck advantage" = bad player = easy win no matter what you use. Basing your skill completely on a premade deck you think is op? Bahaha not in my house.
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