Does anyone know the formula?

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So I was trying to come up with this on my own, and I wasn't sure of the best way to go about this. What is the formula for determining how often a player would win in the absence of mana issues, based on their observed record in games where they had no mana issues, the liklihood mana issues are hit and the general record for players who hit mana issues. Or is there a formula that uses variables different from these?

What I'm trying to get at is, let's say a given player wins 80% of their games when they have no mana issues. You can't say that they would win 80% of their games if mana issues were taken out, because some of those wins came in games where their opponent lost due to mana issues when they would not have won otherwise. I'd like a formula to figure out what the adjustment should be.
Bob, you really need to find another hobby. What percentage of your posts concern mana screw issues in one form or another?
If you want to play chess, why don't you just go play chess? 
If you want to play chess, why don't you just go play chess? 



I don't want to play Chess.
Bob, you really need to find another hobby. What percentage of your posts concern mana screw issues in one form or another?



It's primarily because I win 80% of my games where I have no mana issues, and only 30% of my games where I do have mana issues and I am curious what the game would be like without them.
Bob, you really need to find another hobby. What percentage of your posts concern mana screw issues in one form or another?



It's primarily because I win 80% of my games where I have no mana issues, and only 30% of my games where I do have mana issues and I am curious what the game would be like without them.



Uhh... Really? So if you win the 80% of the games where you have no mana issues and you win 30% of the remaining 20% even with mana problems, what would you do if you had zero mana problems? Is that really your question? Because if it is, then it might be one of the most egotistical questions I have ever read.

You obviously are one of "those" Magic players. You know. The guys who can't stop himself from shuffling his hand over and over and over again. I admit, sometimes you say things that are intuitive and insightful. Other times you just come off as someone who wants to brag about his latest 3-0 deck and complain that you lose because of mana "problems". I don't know if you have low self esteem and just need Magic to make yourself feel good . I don't really know anything personal about you. But I do know that I am likely not the only person who sees your name at the beginning of a thread and thinks "Oh man. Not that again."

Do yourself a favor and just enjoy playing the game.
Bob, you really need to find another hobby. What percentage of your posts concern mana screw issues in one form or another?



It's primarily because I win 80% of my games where I have no mana issues, and only 30% of my games where I do have mana issues and I am curious what the game would be like without them.



Uhh... Really? So if you win the 80% of the games where you have no mana issues and you win 30% of the remaining 20% even with mana problems, what would you do if you had zero mana problems? Is that really your question? Because if it is, then it might be one of the most egotistical questions I have ever read.



No, what I am saying is that I keep track of wins/losses when I first start playing a set. In this set I have won ~80% of the games I've played where I had no mana issues. In games where I had mana issues I've won ~30%. In games where I've muliganed I've won ~33% while in games I haven't muliganed I've won ~70%. In games where I've muliganed and had mana issues or double muliganed I've won 0%. These percentages are all related, but none are expected to add up to 100%.
You know. The guys who can't stop himself from shuffling his hand over and over and over again.



What does that have to do with anything?
You should track when your opponent has mana trouble, then only consider the games in which neither of you have mana trouble, my guess is you win about 65% of those, but that's a very loose estimate.

The real problem here is the tradeoff between mana troubles and power. Without a standard level of power vs. mana consistentcy, the Stats are meaningless. I would only look at win/loss ratio, and cause of losses. That's the best way to improve your game.
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My sig was so awesome it broke Browsers, [url= http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/29455423/For_some_reason...]I had to remove it.[/url] Support Magic Fiction! Or Bolas will eat you
57193048 wrote:
You should never explain layers to people unless one of the following is true: they're studying for a judge exam, you're both in a Ben Affleck movie and it's the only way to save the world, or you hate them.
56663526 wrote:
We try to maintain the illusion that Magic cards are written in English.
56333196 wrote:
69511863 wrote:
Hell, if they steal from us, we'd be honored.
oh my god, AWESOME! Then changing the Slivers was your idea! haha lol
56734518 wrote:
Occassionally when catering, I've been put the task of arranging Fruit and Cheese or Grilled Vegetable platters. More than once a high class buffet has started with the mark of Phyrexia upon it. Since i've got a good eye for color so it looks great to people who don't get the "joke" (it's a niceley divided circle after all: the outline gives you 4-6 "regions" to work with), this has actually got me put on platter design more often, resulting in Phyrexia's presence at more private and industry events.
I have 6917 Planeswalker points, that's probably more than you. [c=Hero's Resolve]"Destiny, chance, fate, fortune, mana screw; they're all just ways of claiming your successes without claiming your failures." Gerrard of the Weatherlight[/c]
You should track when your opponent has mana trouble, then only consider the games in which neither of you have mana trouble, my guess is you win about 65% of those, but that's a very loose estimate.

The real problem here is the tradeoff between mana troubles and power. Without a standard level of power vs. mana consistentcy, the Stats are meaningless. I would only look at win/loss ratio, and cause of losses. That's the best way to improve your game.



That is a very good point, tri-color decks are inherently more risky than dual-colored decks, but they also tend to perform better when they don't hit mana issues. So their non-mana issue stats are surely inflated. But still, I am hopeful that a generalized formula can be found.

I've already looked at win/loss ratio and cause of losses. The losses all come in games where I've muliganed, had mana issues, my opponent has played a bomb rare/mythic or some combination of the above. The majority of these were unwinnable -- the ones lost solely to bombs could not have been won prior to the bomb coming out, nor could they be won after the bomb hit the table because the removal that could have removed the bomb was never drawn or was uncastable at the point it was necessary. The ones lost solely to mana short were ones where I played every card in my hand that I could play, and would still have lost playing them in any other order, with any set of attacking/blocking decisions. The ones I lost solely to mana flood are a little harder to rate, some of the close ones were probably winnable, particularly if I knew the flood was coming, but the ones where I am drawing 3-5 more lands than spells were likely not. The muligan losses are primarily due to other factors, mana issues or double muligans, I still have a positive win percentage when I muligan and that's the only thing that goes wrong, but in RtR those games are few and far between. I've seen x->1->mana short losses, x->2->mana short losses, x->0->double muligan losses and the x->3 muligans often end up as mana flood losses. It's really quite ridiculous how few games in RtR has been standard, non-mana issue, non-muligan games.

And my estimate is that I win between 70-75% when neither me nor my opponent have mana issues. Unless my opponent has played a lot more spells than me over the course of the game, or played a bomb like Growing Ranks that is worth several cards on its own I can generally grind out a win.
You know. The guys who can't stop himself from shuffling his hand over and over and over again.



What does that have to do with anything?



Because it is an obsessive habit that a large percentage of overly competitive Magic players display.
You know. The guys who can't stop himself from shuffling his hand over and over and over again.



What does that have to do with anything?



Because it is an obsessive habit that a large percentage of overly competitive Magic players display.



Shuffling cards within my hand itself? I have never done that when I played paper magic and I don't think there's even a way to do it online.
Shuffling cards within my hand itself? I have never done that when I played paper magic and I don't think there's even a way to do it online.


Some guys do it after every draw, so you don't know what he had. Some benefit if you're bluffing with a land, or in the first couple turns. Online, there's no benefit, and no way to be random.
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My sig was so awesome it broke Browsers, [url= http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/29455423/For_some_reason...]I had to remove it.[/url] Support Magic Fiction! Or Bolas will eat you
57193048 wrote:
You should never explain layers to people unless one of the following is true: they're studying for a judge exam, you're both in a Ben Affleck movie and it's the only way to save the world, or you hate them.
56663526 wrote:
We try to maintain the illusion that Magic cards are written in English.
56333196 wrote:
69511863 wrote:
Hell, if they steal from us, we'd be honored.
oh my god, AWESOME! Then changing the Slivers was your idea! haha lol
56734518 wrote:
Occassionally when catering, I've been put the task of arranging Fruit and Cheese or Grilled Vegetable platters. More than once a high class buffet has started with the mark of Phyrexia upon it. Since i've got a good eye for color so it looks great to people who don't get the "joke" (it's a niceley divided circle after all: the outline gives you 4-6 "regions" to work with), this has actually got me put on platter design more often, resulting in Phyrexia's presence at more private and industry events.
I have 6917 Planeswalker points, that's probably more than you. [c=Hero's Resolve]"Destiny, chance, fate, fortune, mana screw; they're all just ways of claiming your successes without claiming your failures." Gerrard of the Weatherlight[/c]
Shuffling cards within my hand itself? I have never done that when I played paper magic and I don't think there's even a way to do it online.


Some guys do it after every draw, so you don't know what he had. Some benefit if you're bluffing with a land, or in the first couple turns. Online, there's no benefit, and no way to be random.



That does sounds interesting. The only time I remember shuffling your own hand coming into play was back in the early days, when discards were random. You had to shuffle your hand before any random discard because good players would see you looking at various cards and after that it wasn't truly random.
Well, I have gotten used to moving the card that I drew for the turn to the middle of my hand and shuffle a little, just so it's not 100% clear that I drew a land.  Other players told me I should do this, but I'm not sure whether it makes that big of a difference.

At physical drafts, players always shuffle up the cards they didn't take before passing the pile.  I'm pretty sure that this does next to nothing, and is mostly for show.
shuffling the pack that you pass conceals information because it is possible to memorise print runs and deduce with not unreasonable accuracy what people have taken before you; this is really only possible with commons in the first couple of picks in the pack though.

also silentbobus: you just really can't let this go can you. just let it go.

Shuffling cards within my hand itself? I have never done that when I played paper magic and I don't think there's even a way to do it online.


Some guys do it after every draw, so you don't know what he had. Some benefit if you're bluffing with a land, or in the first couple turns. Online, there's no benefit, and no way to be random.


I do this though. Really, what's the problem with it? It's not a habit, it's a conscious decision.


1: It prevents me from signaling to my opponent that I topdecked a land I needed. And after being hit by a Thoughtseize or similar it prevents my opponent from knowing if the spell I played is the copy of the spell they saw.
2: It prevents some of the childish postgame accusations of being a topdecker.

shuffling the pack that you pass conceals information because it is possible to memorise print runs and deduce with not unreasonable accuracy what people have taken before you; this is really only possible with commons in the first couple of picks in the pack though.

also silentbobus: you just really can't let this go can you. just let it go.



What do you want me to let go? If you want me to let something go, why do you keep writing about shuffling packs and hands?
shuffling the pack that you pass conceals information because it is possible to memorise print runs and deduce with not unreasonable accuracy what people have taken before you; this is really only possible with commons in the first couple of picks in the pack though.

also silentbobus: you just really can't let this go can you. just let it go.



Just seems like a very extreme corner case where this would ever do anything, especially at a typical FNM draft.
The first few times I had a pack shuffled before being handed to Me it threw Me off completely.  The guy next to Me knew it too.  Gave him an advantage that night.  I've since gotten used to it.  But I can see it being used to an advantage against new players, definately.

And if you are being competative, then you probably try to take every edge you can get.

As for bob's mana issue.  Don't want a mana issue?  Stop playing.  It's part of the game and they aren't going to change it just so you can get rid of that other 20% loss rate. 

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

While I haven't seen a consensus for any particular method of fixing it, I believe that a majority or at least a silent majority of Magic players would like to see extreme mana/muligan issues addressed. Variability that makes games challenging, and requires players to improvise and play based on educated guesses about what they and their opponents will draw is a good thing. Variability that makes games completely unwinnable for one player right from the start is a bad thing. I am only advocating for the elimination of that second type of variability. The "I kept a starting hand of 2 lands and drew nothing but spells for the entire rest of the game" or the "I muliganed a 1 land hand into a 0 land hand into a 1 land hand" type of variability.
If a shuffled pack being passed to you is a problem, simply unshuffle it (separate by rarity) before picking.

bobus, if you want stats on these things, keep them yourself.  You keep talking about how your opponents only win when certain things happen.  You should also keep track of how often you win because of those same things.  Opponent's mana troubles, your own bombs, your opponent's mulligans, etc.  Perhaps that might give you some perspective on your abilities.

Also, a single mulligan shouldn't be hurting your win rate that much.  A double mulligan, sure, but having to mulligan once isn't really that bad.
If a shuffled pack being passed to you is a problem, simply unshuffle it (separate by rarity) before picking.

bobus, if you want stats on these things, keep them yourself.  You keep talking about how your opponents only win when certain things happen.  You should also keep track of how often you win because of those same things.  Opponent's mana troubles, your own bombs, your opponent's mulligans, etc.  Perhaps that might give you some perspective on your abilities.

Also, a single mulligan shouldn't be hurting your win rate that much.  A double mulligan, sure, but having to mulligan once isn't really that bad.



It isn't bad to muligan once if you aren't forced to muligan again, and if you don't subsequently hit mana issues anyway (which is generally what you're trying to avoid by muliganing in the first place) Muliganing once and not hitting mana issues only drops my win rate from 80% to 60% in RtR. But when you factor in all of the double muligans, mana shorts and mana floods, it drops all the way down to around 33%, which is worse than the rate for mana flooding a 7 card hand. RtR appears to be particularly bad for this, but in other sets it's still a drop from a win percent in the 80's for non-mana issue 7 card hands to a win percent in the 30's or low 40's once I've commited to the first muligan. Perhaps a lot of games really are being won by one card.
As a general question, how do you figure out how much mana to put into your deck.  Of the 40 cards, how many are land?  Do you have a formula?

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

As a general question, how do you figure out how much mana to put into your deck.  Of the 40 cards, how many are land?  Do you have a formula?



I generally play 17 lands, occasionally 16 if the curve is low enough. I'll play additional mana sources over 17, but never additional lands (well, I suppose sacrifice for creature lands and non-mana producing lands are an exception). I have a good formula for land color distribution, but it's pretty close to the suggested lands formula on MtGO, and you still have to tweak it to account for card strengths and curve.
17 is the lowest I will curve.  I did a 16 once and failed horribly.  I will usually find Myself at about 19 mana or so, and never have any problems.

What do you define as a Curve being low enough though? 

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

I played this one at 16 lands:

9 Mountain 7 Swamp
1 Rakdos Cackler 3 Deviant Glee 1 Dynacharge
2 Tavern Swindler 2 Gore-House Chainwalker 2 Rakdos Shred-Freak 2 Rix Maadi Guildmage 1 Ash Zealot
1 Rakdos Keyrune 2 Stab Wound 1 Hellhole Flailer 2 Annihilating Fire
1 Launch Party 1 Cobblebrute 1 Traitorous Instinct
1 Spawn of Rix Maadi

Which had 5 one drops, 9 two drops, 6 three drops, 3 four drops and only one five drop. I had quite a few issues hitting double mountain in my first 3 lands and I mana flooded to 8 lands, 3 spells after keeping a 4 land hand once, but in general it felt like the right number of lands.

I suppose to figure out the exact right number you'd need to run the percentages for how often you'd muligan vs mana short vs mana flood with the deck and your win percentages under those conditions. But I can tell you that conventional wisdom states 19 is much too many for limited decks. Most should be in the 17 land range.
What do you want me to let go? If you want me to let something go, why do you keep writing about shuffling packs and hands?


what i'm saying is that half of the threads in this forum are you complaining about how you can't accept that sometimes you lose because of something that happens to EVERYONE.
What do you want me to let go? If you want me to let something go, why do you keep writing about shuffling packs and hands?


what i'm saying is that half of the threads in this forum are you complaining about how you can't accept that sometimes you lose because of something that happens to EVERYONE.



My position on this has been, and always will be that I would prefer that no one lose because of mana issues or muligans instead of everyone. There is already enough variance introduced by the fact that most limited decks field only 1 or 2 copies of each card, you don't need to tack on games where one or both players start down a spell or can't play spells at all for extended periods of time on top of that. I'd rather wins and losses be determined strictly according to play skill and the choices made during drafting. The only reason I bring this up so often is because I find the opposing position ludicrous, and I can't believe people on these boards feel compelled to defend it.

So for you it's very simple, just agree that you think Magic would be a better game without the unwinnable games introduced by mana issues and muligans. Once the majority of people state that they agree with this I will drop this line of discussion. (Except possibly to discuss the best rules revision to make this happen!)
So for you it's very simple, just agree that you think Magic would be a better game without the unwinnable games introduced by mana issues and muligans. Once the majority of people state that they agree with this I will drop this line of discussion. (Except possibly to discuss the best rules revision to make this happen!)


You've brought this idea up before, and the majority disagrees with you. So stop bringing it up. The argument's old. Magic will never be the game you want.

I do like what the VS. system did to avoid this, however, any card play may be played face-down as a resource, some cards give bonuses from the resource row, but you're not screwed without them. Your opening hand is four cards, but you draw two cards a turn. theSpoils game also claimed to fix this issue, but I don't remember how. Magic is not those games, it never will be, and it shouldn't be.
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My sig was so awesome it broke Browsers, [url= http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75842/29455423/For_some_reason...]I had to remove it.[/url] Support Magic Fiction! Or Bolas will eat you
57193048 wrote:
You should never explain layers to people unless one of the following is true: they're studying for a judge exam, you're both in a Ben Affleck movie and it's the only way to save the world, or you hate them.
56663526 wrote:
We try to maintain the illusion that Magic cards are written in English.
56333196 wrote:
69511863 wrote:
Hell, if they steal from us, we'd be honored.
oh my god, AWESOME! Then changing the Slivers was your idea! haha lol
56734518 wrote:
Occassionally when catering, I've been put the task of arranging Fruit and Cheese or Grilled Vegetable platters. More than once a high class buffet has started with the mark of Phyrexia upon it. Since i've got a good eye for color so it looks great to people who don't get the "joke" (it's a niceley divided circle after all: the outline gives you 4-6 "regions" to work with), this has actually got me put on platter design more often, resulting in Phyrexia's presence at more private and industry events.
I have 6917 Planeswalker points, that's probably more than you. [c=Hero's Resolve]"Destiny, chance, fate, fortune, mana screw; they're all just ways of claiming your successes without claiming your failures." Gerrard of the Weatherlight[/c]
I played this one at 16 lands:

9 Mountain 7 Swamp
1 Rakdos Cackler 3 Deviant Glee 1 Dynacharge
2 Tavern Swindler 2 Gore-House Chainwalker 2 Rakdos Shred-Freak 2 Rix Maadi Guildmage 1 Ash Zealot
1 Rakdos Keyrune 2 Stab Wound 1 Hellhole Flailer 2 Annihilating Fire
1 Launch Party 1 Cobblebrute 1 Traitorous Instinct
1 Spawn of Rix Maadi

Which had 5 one drops, 9 two drops, 6 three drops, 3 four drops and only one five drop. I had quite a few issues hitting double mountain in my first 3 lands and I mana flooded to 8 lands, 3 spells after keeping a 4 land hand once, but in general it felt like the right number of lands.

I suppose to figure out the exact right number you'd need to run the percentages for how often you'd muligan vs mana short vs mana flood with the deck and your win percentages under those conditions. But I can tell you that conventional wisdom states 19 is much too many for limited decks. Most should be in the 17 land range.




Alright, by My forumla you should have been running approximately 19 lands in this deck to not get completely screwed.

Formula as follows:

You have 24 cards @ a combined 58cmc.  That works out to an opening hand requiring 2.416 land.  Divide that by the number of cards in the opening hand and you get a percentage of 34.52%.  Of a deck of 40 cards that works into 13.8 lands.  So round that up to 14 lands, and then add the highest cmc card you have to the total for a grand total of 19.

You might put yourself at a 53 card deck by adding in those few lands, but I doubt that you would be short Mana as often as you complain about getting Mana screwed.

Alternately you could drop the two Tavern Swindler's and you'd be down to a cmc of 54 divided by 22 divide by 7 times 41 plus 5... equals 19.37, round down.

You still maintain 7 turn 2 drops (all bodies), haven't lost any removal, and reduced your chances of being Mana Screwed by 7.5%.

You could even afford to maybe lose one of the lands to bring you to an even 40 with the inclusion of the Keyrune as a Mana source.

If you can do simple math, guestimate, or even have a calculator (most smart phones have them) on hand you can fix your problem with that formula. 

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/19.jpg)

I do like what the VS. system did to avoid this, however, any card play may be played face-down as a resource, some cards give bonuses from the resource row, but you're not screwed without them. Your opening hand is four cards, but you draw two cards a turn.



See, this is the part that is confusing to me. You've seen a system that fixed this very issue, something that has an easy analog in magic, and yet you don't want to fix Magic using the same system. Why is that? I like most every aspect of the Magic system over every other CCG I have played, and yet there exists this one glaring weakness where the rest of it seems so polished.

I often wonder if the rules would have been written differently had the ante system not been such a large component when Magic was initially developed. According to Richard Garfield the mana system was designed to hand out arbitrary wins in order to allow poor (monetarily poor) players to build their collections by winning valuable cards off of players with access to decks of rare cards. Without the initial arbitrary wins the only way for a beginning player to build a competitive deck was to buy tons and tons of cards to get access to the important rares, something Richard didn't want anyone to have to do.

So once that reason was lost in time there is primarily the inertial "It's the way the game is" and "It happens to everyone" arguments left, which I don't feel are particularly good ones.

I'm all for finding an improved method to the mulligan rules, I've posed a few but there needs to be a decent amount of further testing.  While at some level getting the occasional win/lose for mana issues is part of the game, walking away with a win because your opponent has 2 same colored lands on turn 8 and you pummel him to death isn't very satisfying.

At the same time, the rules need to also account for the fact that some players will mulligan hands to find bombs/god draws, or attempt to abuse a system designed to level the playing field.

I'm all for trying to convince the community to implement a new change, but after a while I'm not sure what you're trying to prove, even if all your evidence and numbers were totally correct and you have a 100% win rate despite mana/mythics/mulligans, great, to what end?  It just proves that you believe the luck factor in MtG should be reduced, at some level I agree but Richard Garrot gave an hour long lecture recently on why luck is helpful to the game and he makes some compelling points as to why it's needed.

I'd like to see the luck factor reduced a bit, but not removed.  I feel like Wizards is doing this at some level by so many dual/shock/tap/pain lands in standard.  I'd like to see some sort of system to exchange cards for lands exclusive to limited, but it would have to be very finely tuned to prevent abuse.  That I think is a worthy goal to explore instead of data collection.
Tolkein was a jerk. Seriously, what DM sends 9 Wraith Lords at a Lvl 2 party of Halflings. The only 'correct' way to play D&D is by whatever method is making the group you have at that session, have the most fun.
I played this one at 16 lands:

9 Mountain 7 Swamp
1 Rakdos Cackler 3 Deviant Glee 1 Dynacharge
2 Tavern Swindler 2 Gore-House Chainwalker 2 Rakdos Shred-Freak 2 Rix Maadi Guildmage 1 Ash Zealot
1 Rakdos Keyrune 2 Stab Wound 1 Hellhole Flailer 2 Annihilating Fire
1 Launch Party 1 Cobblebrute 1 Traitorous Instinct
1 Spawn of Rix Maadi

Which had 5 one drops, 9 two drops, 6 three drops, 3 four drops and only one five drop. I had quite a few issues hitting double mountain in my first 3 lands and I mana flooded to 8 lands, 3 spells after keeping a 4 land hand once, but in general it felt like the right number of lands.

I suppose to figure out the exact right number you'd need to run the percentages for how often you'd muligan vs mana short vs mana flood with the deck and your win percentages under those conditions. But I can tell you that conventional wisdom states 19 is much too many for limited decks. Most should be in the 17 land range.




Alright, by My forumla you should have been running approximately 19 lands in this deck to not get completely screwed.

Formula as follows:

You have 24 cards @ a combined 58cmc.  That works out to an opening hand requiring 2.416 land.  Divide that by the number of cards in the opening hand and you get a percentage of 34.52%.  Of a deck of 40 cards that works into 13.8 lands.  So round that up to 14 lands, and then add the highest cmc card you have to the total for a grand total of 19.

You might put yourself at a 53 card deck by adding in those few lands, but I doubt that you would be short Mana as often as you complain about getting Mana screwed.

Alternately you could drop the two Tavern Swindler's and you'd be down to a cmc of 54 divided by 22 divide by 7 times 41 plus 5... equals 19.37, round down.

You still maintain 7 turn 2 drops (all bodies), haven't lost any removal, and reduced your chances of being Mana Screwed by 7.5%.

You could even afford to maybe lose one of the lands to bring you to an even 40 with the inclusion of the Keyrune as a Mana source.

If you can do simple math, guestimate, or even have a calculator (most smart phones have them) on hand you can fix your problem with that formula. 



Yeah, I don't think that's the formula. Certainly a formula stating that you should play 19 lands in a 40 card deck featuring primarily 1 and 2 drops is suspect. But keep looking for your formula, I'm sure there is one out there. As for mana flood vs mana short, playing 17 lands in most decks, dumping 0, 1, 6 and 7 card hands, keeping almost all 2, 3 and 4 land hands and about half of 5 land hands means I am seeing no-muligan, mana floods over twice as often as no-muligan, mana shorts. However, I am also a lot less likely to win mana short games, so I suppose there is that to consider.

But seriously, 19 lands for most limited decks is much too much. I don't think your formula is correct. Does someone out there have a correct formula for Mr Hammer? 
I've taken to running 18 land decks in some cases, simply because I seem to end up short more often than not.  Really depends on the deck though.  There is a huge variance between 16, 17 and 18 land hands.  It's kind of crazy how the math works out, the few times I've seen someone crunch the numbers.
Tolkein was a jerk. Seriously, what DM sends 9 Wraith Lords at a Lvl 2 party of Halflings. The only 'correct' way to play D&D is by whatever method is making the group you have at that session, have the most fun.
If you want equal resource availability then why don't you just play chess. 

You don't need to make a thread every day about how you get resource screwed all the time.  
This seems like the place to post a question that just hit me.

How much luck do people feel like is in the game right now and how much luck do they think should be involved?


A lot, some, very little and More, less, or leave it the way it is, are probably the easiest answers since I'm not sure how difficult trying to factor in hard numbers would be.  It also can swing from set to set I feel like.
Tolkein was a jerk. Seriously, what DM sends 9 Wraith Lords at a Lvl 2 party of Halflings. The only 'correct' way to play D&D is by whatever method is making the group you have at that session, have the most fun.
So I was trying to come up with this on my own, and I wasn't sure of the best way to go about this. What is the formula for determining how often a player would win in the absence of mana issues, based on their observed record in games where they had no mana issues, the liklihood mana issues are hit and the general record for players who hit mana issues. Or is there a formula that uses variables different from these?

What I'm trying to get at is, let's say a given player wins 80% of their games when they have no mana issues. You can't say that they would win 80% of their games if mana issues were taken out, because some of those wins came in games where their opponent lost due to mana issues when they would not have won otherwise. I'd like a formula to figure out what the adjustment should be.


So y = r cubed over 3. And if you determine the rate of change in this curve correctly, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.
This seems like the place to post a question that just hit me.

How much luck do people feel like is in the game right now and how much luck do they think should be involved?


A lot, some, very little and More, less, or leave it the way it is, are probably the easiest answers since I'm not sure how difficult trying to factor in hard numbers would be.  It also can swing from set to set I feel like.


I loose repetable to my friend. I can use his deck, or my deck. We switch decks and I still loose. I am well aware that I am new to magic, and don't mind learning. I will catch myself and think, wow I forgot to attack with my flyer, would that 1 point of damage made a diffrance? Or Should I use my counter now or later. Those are the skill questions you learn. It has nothing to do with Mana, only to when to play what and in what order.
This seems like the place to post a question that just hit me.

How much luck do people feel like is in the game right now and how much luck do they think should be involved?


A lot, some, very little and More, less, or leave it the way it is, are probably the easiest answers since I'm not sure how difficult trying to factor in hard numbers would be.  It also can swing from set to set I feel like.



The way it is. I've been playing Magic for years, I would have left the game after a couple months if I did not enjoy a game with the quantities of luck and strategy it possessed. Plus if I don't want to get mana screwed, there are formats I can play like EDH and Momir Basic where such a thing is unlikely. A week ago I drafted the most kickbutt Bant deck ever, but game one had to mulligan nolanders down to four cards and then game two had to mulligan down to three cards (these two hands also ended up having no land). In the second game I actually almost squeezed out a victory. I aknowledge that things like this will happen every 1/largenumber of games though. It's a little disapointing that I didn't actually get to play my deck, but that's due to the tournament structure (8-4). It's not like I didn't still enjoy drafting my deck either, and there are always future drafts to look forward to. In the long run the statistics will work out to my favor, a fluke is a fluke, and nothing to get all rustled about.
This seems like the place to post a question that just hit me.

How much luck do people feel like is in the game right now and how much luck do they think should be involved?


A lot, some, very little and More, less, or leave it the way it is, are probably the easiest answers since I'm not sure how difficult trying to factor in hard numbers would be.  It also can swing from set to set I feel like.



I feel that the amount of luck in constructed is about right. In limited I feel there is already enough variability in drafting and playing what typically amounts to a singleton deck, I feel there should be less luck in limited play itself.
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