[INN] Predicting the Metagame

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Since the full spoiler has been released, we now have a better idea of the cardpool and the decks that should flourish. In an attempt to jumpstart the process of metagaming, I figure I'd open a thread to try and get an idea of how posters view the Tiers post-Innistrad. Also, feel free to suggest any decks that aren't obvious that you believe might make an impact on metagame. I'll try to keep an accurate system of the tiers based upon majority rule in the OP.

Discuss.


Tier 1

Tempered Steel
Birthing Pod
Puresteel
U/x Control (Invisi-Blade, UB Control, Solar Flare, etc.)


Tier 2

U/W Aggro
R/x Control (Probably Chandra based)
R/x Aggro (Goblins, RDW, Curse of Stalked Prey strategies)
R/G Werewolves
W/x Humans
G/x Swords
Vampires
Rock
Heartless Summoning
Tezzeret


Tier 3

Zombies
Grimoire-Mill
Soul Sisters
U/G Stompy
Infect



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Use faith in the absence of science, not in its stead.

The Rock(G/B,Death Cloud G/B) will make a come back I'm sure. It has so many of the same tools it had before and that it needs. Night Terrors, Sever The Bloodlines, Make a Wish, Solem Simulacrum, Smallpox, Despise, Thrun, The Last Troll. And there is just a multitude of other stuff that can you can use to tailor make it for your meta ranging from Curse of Oblivion and Bloodgift Demon and Surgical Extraction to Bramblecrush and Creeping Renaissance and Caravan Vigil/Mulch.
rock is gonna be tier 1.5 if someone can make a good list and run with it because of the tools.
Especially since smallpox exists with alot of other terrible things to deal with.

Also My bet is R/G aggro is gonna be a deck as well, but not werewolves, because honestly besides about 1 or 2, they are casual fodder, but some of the other things you could do is pretty decent.


also goblins are tier 2, because they are gonna randomly take tournies since they have gobbo granade ands burn spells to fuel their burning spammy goodness.
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56859838 wrote:
Well obviously goblins breed at a rate of millions of times per year, thus in a few years they had evolved into a new species... you know or....
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63344365 wrote:
Your asking for proof that the ocean is wet, while your standing on the beach.
56733088 wrote:
Are these rankings all anonymus? Can I go rank everybody I think is mafia with 1 star?
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I predict U/W agro, U/W control, U/W everything. Long live caw blade?

And here I thought they banned it Undecided

PS: why does everyone seem to think smallpox is good? I really dont get it.
I definitely foresee U/W Control and Esper Solar Flare being top tier. Which will be better? I have no idea. Right now I'm in love with Esper Unburial Rites.

At least no-one seems to have mentioned the combo deck yet, so I should be able to get some free wins from it when people have no idea what I'm doing.
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Some kind of Superfriends control deck will probably be good as well, though not necessarily blue-based.
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RDW, even though it loses goblin guide is still pretty strong. Stormkirk noble, bloodcrazed neonate, furnace scamp, stormblood berserker and koth with volt charge to proliferate can kill as early as turn 4 or 5. You can also tune it to be a little more mid-rangey, now that there's no more valakut, with falkenrath marauder and urabrask.

How about R/G titan kessig wolf run ramp combo? Ramp up to turn 4 prime **** to grab kessig wolf run and kill in one swing with assault strobe and ranger's guile to protect it.
RDW, even though it loses goblin guide is still pretty strong. Stormkirk noble, bloodcrazed neonate, furnace scamp, stormblood berserker and koth with volt charge to proliferate can kill as early as turn 4 or 5. You can also tune it to be a little more mid-rangey, now that there's no more valakut, with falkenrath marauder and urabrask.


There are three main problems with RDW post-rotation.

1) Timely Reinforcements
2) A projected increase in midrange decks once Kut/Twin is gone and
3) The loss of Guide, Blaze and - perhaps most importantly - the loss of every playable 1-mana burn spell in the format.

Possibly the best creature to come out of Innistrad for RDW is Ashmouth Hound, though, as it adresses many of the problems above. It puts a lot of midrange creatures within burn range when blocked and it doesn't end up trading with Reinforcements tokens.

The loss of a good 1-mana burn spell hurts a lot, though. It's going to be hard to push a Noble through while building board position or pressure - especially with Searing Blaze gone as well. I would have loved a good Shock variant.
Photobucket Banner by zpikduM - typo also by zpikduM. =) Skide Fuld - Problem of Evil by frontsession Currently playing Standard: TurboJund Legacy: Zoo Block: Hahaha, good one! 1000th post on August 28, 2009 at 6:08PM
RDW, even though it loses goblin guide is still pretty strong. Stormkirk noble, bloodcrazed neonate, furnace scamp, stormblood berserker and koth with volt charge to proliferate can kill as early as turn 4 or 5. You can also tune it to be a little more mid-rangey, now that there's no more valakut, with falkenrath marauder and urabrask.


There are three main problems with RDW post-rotation.

1) Timely Reinforcements
2) A projected increase in midrange decks once Kut/Twin is gone and
3) The loss of Guide, Blaze and - perhaps most importantly - the loss of every playable 1-mana burn spell in the format.

Possibly the best creature to come out of Innistrad for RDW is Ashmouth Hound, though, as it adresses many of the problems above. It puts a lot of midrange creatures within burn range when blocked and it doesn't end up trading with Reinforcements tokens.

The loss of a good 1-mana burn spell hurts a lot, though. It's going to be hard to push a Noble through while building board position or pressure - especially with Searing Blaze gone as well. I would have loved a good Shock variant.



I have to disagree with you, my friend:

1. Timely reinforcements - immolating souleater & hero of oxid ridge will nullify this effect.
2. Mid range deck - Dismember will squash a lot of the midrange creatures. Also we can definitely kill them before they setup their board.
3. 1-mana burn - shock and galvanic blast would have to do it for now.  A lot of the x/3 creatures rotated out, though, so I don't think we will have a problem. Plus we have dismember.

I predict stormkirk noble will be an aggro powerhouse since all the other good 1 drops are all humans.
Between Mentor of the Meek and all the token generation going on, white weenie looks like it could be viable again.

Also, Puresteel sideboards will probably have a few Wooden Stakes and Blazing Torches.

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I have to disagree with you, my friend:

1. Timely reinforcements - immolating souleater & hero of oxid ridge will nullify this effect.
2. Mid range deck - Dismember will squash a lot of the midrange creatures. Also we can definitely kill them before they setup their board.
3. 1-mana burn - shock and galvanic blast would have to do it for now.  A lot of the x/3 creatures rotated out, though, so I don't think we will have a problem. Plus we have dismember.

I predict stormkirk noble will be an aggro powerhouse since all the other good 1 drops are all humans.

Personally, RDW is the one single deck I play the best. I *can* do well with midrange, control and combo decks as long as they're well built, but I just tend to win so much more with RDW - even if it's not the best deck in the format.

For that reason, I'll probably also be swinging with some red dudes in the new format. At the very least, I'll need to test it until I'm completely certain that it's unplayable.

With that said...

1) The fact that I might have to run Immolating Souleater in my RDW isn't really something I'm stoked about. I'd also much rather run 4 Koth than Hero, but sadly, Hero is just needed too much against Reinforcements.
2) Dismember and Ashmouth Hound both help against midrange, but I doubt that it's going to be a great MU for RDW, which means that an increased amount of opposing midrange isn't a good thing.
3)I'm not going to be running either of those unless I absolutely have to.
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I think there will be some sort of tap out UB deck that uses the graveyard as a resource. I expect these resources to be permanents and that it will not aim for typical draw go antics w/ counters and the like. I'm thinking Liliana, Jace 3.0, Skaab Ruinator, Alchemy, Despise, Phantasmal, etc.

Birthing Pod will still be good.

UW will manifest in various forms.

Tempered will initially do well, but will become weaker as the meta develops.

RDW will be a fringe deck, but mostly for Tempered being a better option and Timely being sided in UW builds.

People will be using blades on cheap weenies like Invisible Stalker.

Less permission control and more aggro control with Jace B out of the meta.

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At least no-one seems to have mentioned the combo deck yet, so I should be able to get some free wins from it when people have no idea what I'm doing.



Just out of curiosity, does the combo use 2 cards or 3? If it's a two-card combo, I could see it being up there around Tier 2. Otherwise, it's probably near Tier 3, unless its components are easily tutored for.

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Here's the thing about RDW: it's never bad. Sometimes it's not particularly good, but a skilled pilot (with some lucky draws) can always take down an unprepared tournament with RDW. It does what it does very efficiently, and unless design/development changes drastically, it will always be deck you have to deal with, even if it's not as good as it has been since M12 came out.
Stop using "IMO" in sentences that aren't opinion. If you don't think a deck will ever be tier 1, that's great - but it's not an opinion. It's a prediction of the future. I identify as neither male nor female. You may refer to me with either gender pronoun or the singular they, whichever suits you best. ^_^ Re: Dismember
97543238 wrote:
Everybody knows that having your awesome creatures killed before they can do anything is frustrating, but the Red mage in me doesn't seem to understand why it's so bad when his creatures spontaneously combust into Flame Javelins and make his opponent discard something at the same time.
Currently Working On: Self-Mill (Standard)
I keep hearing people talking about a new combo deck. What is it, though?
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57689138 wrote:
I just realized how large a pain in the ass it's going to be to break down regionals like this
but look on the bright side, [b]Ding Dong jund is dead[b], it's not the boogyman anymore XD

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57689138 wrote:
Near Death Experience?
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MaRo keeps stabbing me in the face with cards like Phyrexian Rebirth. It's a black card.. with black art... in a white layer with white costs. Up yours, design team.
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I think that G/W tokens might be ok aswel. With the Ajani enchantment,and all the stuff that makes tokens, esp 3 token making walkers, it might be good...tier 2-3 atleast.

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57183108 wrote:
56783528 wrote:
Meh, not sure whether this is entirely accurate, at least for concept decks. Sometimes an unrefined idea cannot beat the top dogs at first, but with a few suggestions and heavy playtesting, they might get there. Islands' diamond in the rough lists are a good rebuttal to your statement.
Islands' decks are more gazing into the abyss of madness and madness staring back at you. With Manamorphose.
I keep hearing people talking about a new combo deck. What is it, though?



Village Bell-Ringer seems fairly combolicious, but Exarch is basically the same card. I just don't see any Splinter Twin replacement in the current cardpool. I hope this combo deck presents itself sooner than later. Otherwise, it will catch a good amount of people off-guard.

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Use faith in the absence of science, not in its stead.

I would really like to know what this combo is as well(assuming it is different than the 2 I have in mind(3 card))
what is heartless summoning.dec?



A deck that attempts to abuse heartless summoning....

For reference,
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Heartless Summoning
Enchantment
Creatures spells you cast cost less to cast.
Creatures you control get -1/-1. 
 
Stop using "IMO" in sentences that aren't opinion. If you don't think a deck will ever be tier 1, that's great - but it's not an opinion. It's a prediction of the future. I identify as neither male nor female. You may refer to me with either gender pronoun or the singular they, whichever suits you best. ^_^ Re: Dismember
97543238 wrote:
Everybody knows that having your awesome creatures killed before they can do anything is frustrating, but the Red mage in me doesn't seem to understand why it's so bad when his creatures spontaneously combust into Flame Javelins and make his opponent discard something at the same time.
Currently Working On: Self-Mill (Standard)
what is heartless summoning.dec?



Ya, basically, it will be like Black Ramp utilizing Summoning. I suspect it will probably end up being Blue/Black so that it can dig for Summoning. Otherwise, the deck might be susceptible to falling apart should it not find its namesake. Anyways, sample playout is below:


Turn 1: Ponder
Turn 2: Summoning
Turn 3: Sturmgeist/Bloodgift Demon
Turn 4: Consecrated Sphinx/Titan/Wurmcoil

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Use faith in the absence of science, not in its stead.

From my initial testing, I'm willing to say there are only 2 viable Aggro decks, and of those only one should you actually play. Tempered Steel and RDW both have game against the format but Tempered Steel beats RDW soundly.

My control tests are not decisive enough to say, but manabase crafting for three or more colours is very important. Very easy to have too many lands cone into play tapped and lose turns due to tempo.
As far as Tier predictions, RDW, Tempered Steel, Bant and Bug Pod, and U control are tier 1, based on what I'm seeing. Everything else is Tier 2, no trends really emerging to define Tier 1.5.
I see Puresteel being up there as well. I don't know if losing Basilisk Collar hurts them enough to negate the consistency gained from Mentor of the Meek.

I'd further separate U Control into UB, UW, and Solar Flare. Of those I think Solar Flare is looking the best, and UB probably looking the worst. All 3 should be playable though.
Tiers are based on popularity (i.e. an objectively measurable relative attendance). I don't know how good a Puresteel/Sword type UW deck is, but I haven't seen it played yet, so my measure so far hasnt placed it.
For a similar reason I haven't divided up blue control yet, I just haven't seen a dominant attendance out of those three builds so for now I count them together.
From my initial testing, I'm willing to say there are only 2 viable Aggro decks, and of those only one should you actually play. Tempered Steel and RDW both have game against the format but Tempered Steel beats RDW soundly.



Steel seems to be tearing it up on Magic-League, already taking a few top spots in little tourneys. I wonder when a Red Control variant sporting Slagstorm will rise up to challenge it. The two recent Steel builds were Block. lol.

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Grimgrin + Fiend Hunter + Sun Titan for infinite? Seems slow Cyrus.

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My testing has UGx Pod, UW Hexproof/midrange, UB(w) Control, UW Puresteel, and Big Red at the top of the pile.

I think Draft is the best format in Magic.

I strive to be critical, rational and openminded.

Until I can get the new RDW cards from Innistrad, I'm gonna be using running Machine UR.

This thread isn't useful at all.  At the start people are going to play red agro, pod, tempered steel, some sort of blue variant control, and maybe WW.  If you think the metagame will look different than that you're either lying to yourself or inexperienced... the really developed interesting decks are either created by a pro or come out of magic online after a few weeks.  Even if you discover the most broken thing ever if it's not an obvious deck no ones going to play it until at least a month passes in the format.

edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.

Slagstorm isn't playable in Steel. That's what Whipflare is for.

edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.




People play invalid decks all the time.
Learn what 'tiers' are. 
Stop using "IMO" in sentences that aren't opinion. If you don't think a deck will ever be tier 1, that's great - but it's not an opinion. It's a prediction of the future. I identify as neither male nor female. You may refer to me with either gender pronoun or the singular they, whichever suits you best. ^_^ Re: Dismember
97543238 wrote:
Everybody knows that having your awesome creatures killed before they can do anything is frustrating, but the Red mage in me doesn't seem to understand why it's so bad when his creatures spontaneously combust into Flame Javelins and make his opponent discard something at the same time.
Currently Working On: Self-Mill (Standard)

edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.




People play invalid decks all the time.
Learn what 'tiers' are. 



If you're going to list infect as tier 3(which is fine) then you can't list r/g werewolves, heartless summoning, and the rock as tier 2.

Slagstorm isn't playable in Steel. That's what Whipflare is for.


That's what Big Red/Machine UR is for.  :D

edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.




People play invalid decks all the time.
Learn what 'tiers' are. 



If you're going to list infect as tier 3(which is fine) then you can't list r/g werewolves, heartless summoning, and the rock as tier 2.




*shrugs*
If you want to debate how popular decks will be that's fine.
My only objection was that your objection was that he listed what you think are 'bad decks' which meant the thread was pointless, when tiers are a measurement of popularity not strength. 
Stop using "IMO" in sentences that aren't opinion. If you don't think a deck will ever be tier 1, that's great - but it's not an opinion. It's a prediction of the future. I identify as neither male nor female. You may refer to me with either gender pronoun or the singular they, whichever suits you best. ^_^ Re: Dismember
97543238 wrote:
Everybody knows that having your awesome creatures killed before they can do anything is frustrating, but the Red mage in me doesn't seem to understand why it's so bad when his creatures spontaneously combust into Flame Javelins and make his opponent discard something at the same time.
Currently Working On: Self-Mill (Standard)
Steel is obviously gone as a competitive deck. Pod IS the whole of tier 1, no questions asked. There may be some R/X aggro, but I'm not seeing it yet. Various control lists may exist in a month, but not immediately.

I don't know what combo deck Cyrus is talking about, but I'm not particularly inclined to look for it right now, either. 

IMAGE(http://i1101.photobucket.com/albums/g424/syreal94/SIGS1AL.png) Sig by zpikduM.

Steel is obviously gone as a competitive deck.



This is definitely NOT obvious. Explanation?
Stop using "IMO" in sentences that aren't opinion. If you don't think a deck will ever be tier 1, that's great - but it's not an opinion. It's a prediction of the future. I identify as neither male nor female. You may refer to me with either gender pronoun or the singular they, whichever suits you best. ^_^ Re: Dismember
97543238 wrote:
Everybody knows that having your awesome creatures killed before they can do anything is frustrating, but the Red mage in me doesn't seem to understand why it's so bad when his creatures spontaneously combust into Flame Javelins and make his opponent discard something at the same time.
Currently Working On: Self-Mill (Standard)

edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.




People play invalid decks all the time.
Learn what 'tiers' are. 



If you're going to list infect as tier 3(which is fine) then you can't list r/g werewolves, heartless summoning, and the rock as tier 2.




The tiers aren't set in stone or anything. Basically, I just threw up a rough draft of which decks I thought might be appearing in the meta. And am open to changing them around according to the thoughts/arguments of the other posters.

If you believe that you can't predict a meta before the pros and Magic Online end up shaping it, then you are severely mistaken, sir. Wonder how the pros can travel from state to state picking up wins (in locals metas they've never experienced, which are constantly evolving)? Ya... that's metagaming.

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Disclaimer: This member may or may not be associated with Team GFG in any other regard besides his admiration of its members.

Use faith in the absence of science, not in its stead.


edit: Also, most of the tier 2 decks listed are so unviable that even listing them as possible contenders invalidates this whole thread.




People play invalid decks all the time.
Learn what 'tiers' are. 



If you're going to list infect as tier 3(which is fine) then you can't list r/g werewolves, heartless summoning, and the rock as tier 2.




The tiers aren't set in stone or anything. Basically, I just threw up a rough draft of which decks I thought might be appearing in the meta. And am open to changing them around according to the thoughts/arguments of the other posters.

If you believe that you can't predict a meta before the pros and Magic Online end up shaping it, then you are severely mistaken, sir. Wonder how the pros can travel from state to state picking up wins (in locals metas they've never experienced, which are constantly evolving)? Ya... that's metagaming.



You misinterpreted my first point, but I still want to offer a counterpoint to your 2nd paragraph.  First off, yes you can predict the metagame.  You do it by taking the most obvious decks in the format that people will be able to build on their own without screwing up, and test against those.  Right now that would be tempered steel, red, pod, blue variants, then possibly ww mono black and infect.  People won't have new decks right away, and if they do it won't be a widespread thing.  Basically, even if there really is some heartless summoning deck that is better than anything else in std, no one is going to actually play it at the beginning.  Even if someone DOES break it, your average fnm player won't have it unless it's so obvious that anyone could figure it out.

To your second point, this isn't how it actually works.  Every metagame in a solved format is similar enough that you can take splinter twin anywhere you want and win with it as an example.  It doesn't matter if it's a fnm in california or florida.  Secondly, unsolved formats for major events are usually pretty rare and only happen under a few circumstances.  Usually, it's a pro tour or worlds and the format isn't on mtgo.  In this case pros break the format by testing in teams, but a lot of times they still miss things.  Other times, people use mtgo to solve the format for them.  At Scg opens the people aren't real pros so they just bring whatever is obvious.  I can guarantee the first scg open after rotation will have a top 8 full of red, pod, steel, or whatever deck a pro writes about on scg a week before the event.
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