How often and how much?

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So I'm on a major losing streak. I have lost a ton of games to landscrew-landflood while my opponents seem to curve out every time?

I play online and my rating is easily trackable. When I first joined I steadily went up from 1600 into the mid-1700's. Now I'm down to 1642. I know it's supposed to "even out" (opponent will get landscewed sometimes) but seriously I'm still waiting to be on the beneficial end....

At $15 per draft this is unsustainable. I'm majorly regretting getting back into Magic at this point because this is such BS.

It's got me thinking, how much do you guys draft, how much money do you spend on this? Is this just "part of the game"? If it is, I'll walk away now. Do I just suck? Maybe but I do build what I think are good curved decks and I use approx 17 lands.

Anyways, post is half-rant but half-survey. I'd be curious to know.
I completely stopped playing Magic online because of this very thing. In a live draft, I can open cards which I can then trade to draft and I get mana screwed much less. I haven't had to pay for a draft in months, whereas on MTGO I was dumping WAY too much money. I don't miss it. Playing online is just not the same game. No bluffing, no reading opponents etc.
Is it alright of I start shipping you and bobus?

Why does everyone think I'm phantom lancer? QFT:

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139359831 wrote:
I hope all this helps you to see things in a greater light—and understand that Magic: the Gathering was really created by extraterrestials using Richard Garfield as a medium. The game itself reflects the socio-psycho realtivity between living beings, and the science that takes precedence over them—to define reality for them all (like telekinesis, weather, scientific reaction, phenomenon, ingenuity, how the brain works, etc.). I'd also bet there is an entity floating thousands of miles above us, looking down on the current state of game, shaking its fist like... "Wtf are you doing?! You're getting it all screwed up!". Awkward—to be evolved, and yet still subject to the ladder that is the concepts of the game. In this case, misconception, corruption, and deception. With the realities of each color becoming distorted (through oblivious designers), leading the game to reflect a false state of reality that warps the understanding that other people have about those things. For example, people thinking that white could be anything except pure good. This shouldn't be too far off though, I mean...Magic is designed based on reality after all, so that entity (those entities) should be subject to those things. Anyways, I guess when you're busy doing space stuff you can't always be around to ensure quality control. It's no wonder they choose Garfield, they're so much alike; that's exactly what happened to him and Magic.
166199665 wrote:
omg snortng so much febbdelicious /intocixated in rl
I try to draft at least once a week even in times when I'm busy (like now). I often end 2-1 or 3-0 in Swiss (Cube being the only format where 1-2 was more than a freak occurence), which is the prize structure I play the most, so I'm doing a "slow bleed". But I am definitely spending money playing online, just like offline. Expecting something like this to be basically free is presumpteous (I am not saying this is what you are doing).
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
I was down to playing about once a week, but lately I've been playing quite a bit, around 3 times a week. I've been on a hotstreak for the past few tournaments, going 3-0 more often than not, but my average for RtR is around 2-1. In order to break even I think you have to average around 2.5-0.5 at this point, in the beginning you only need around 2-1 because there are a lot more cards you can trade for tickets to offset the effective 6 tix cost of playing.

As for why I've won so much lately, in the recent tournaments I've either ended up drafting a guild no-one else was drafting, from P1P1 all the way to the end, or I got an Armada Wurm level P1P1 that made it possible to win even though I was getting cut. 
Is it alright of I start shipping you and bobus?


Thread win.

Do I just suck? Maybe but I do build what I think are good curved decks and I use approx 17 lands. Anyways, post is half-rant but half-survey. I'd be curious to know.


The other element is how many colors you run. It's easy to get greedy in RTR. Also, remember MTGO doesn't manaweave or any such trick, so mana screw is more likely.
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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.
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We try to maintain the illusion that Magic cards are written in English.
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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]
At $15 per draft this is unsustainable.



You should be able to trade for 3 RTR packs for around 10 tix, so that will bring the cost down a little.

I treat MTGO like real-life drafts and limit myself to how many I play per week.  Playing swiss helps because 1. you usually get at least a pack or two back and 2. you keep playing even after you lose a round (thus investing more time and you're not jumping right into another draft if you lose one of  the first two rounds).

I get the rest of my fix by interacting with other people drafting on streams like twitch.tv.

I've had the sickest decks ever go out in round one, and I've had mediocre decks go 3-0. Like you said it evens out.
One thing to remember online is to mulligan aggressively. Don't think, "this is OK if I just draw a X" and then rage 4 turns later when X doesn't come and you're one turn away from dying.

Another thing that's a stunning quality of many players including me, is that we take our wins for granted. When I get mana flooded I send my keyboard to the afterlife going "wtf again!?! That's like 5 times in a row!". You can have matches in a row where you curve out perfectly, then get sent out with no lands 2 matches in a row and feel like the unluckiest person in the world.

Shouldn't matter how much money others spend on drafts, everyone is different.
I do about one a week and can keep it up for maybe 6 months before I have to redeposit (roughly 50 dollars) 
There was a time in the past where I did 3-5 a day and never redeposited. There was also a time where I did 3-5 a day and looked a bit dubious at my credit card statement going 'this can't be right, there's no way I did THAT many'. 
I draft once per week.  I play paper because I like collecting the cards and i consider the cost of the draft as money spent.  I'm not investing in anything or expecting a return/self sustaining pass time.  I also spend money buying cards, but this is to do with collecting, not playing.

I win and lose games to mana screw/flood and mulligans occasionally, but not so often that it puts me off playing. 

Cheers
One thing to remember online is to mulligan aggressively. Don't think, "this is OK if I just draw a X" and then rage 4 turns later when X doesn't come and you're one turn away from dying.



I can say from experience and statistical analysis that this is not good advice. Assuming you are playing against an opponent of rougly equal skill, mulliganing even to 6 cards is a huge handicap. So much so that a player keeping 7 cards is winning approximately 3 games for every 1 game they lose against a player keeping less than 7 cards. If you are having trouble beating an opponent with 7 cards it is only going to get worse with 6 cards or less.
If you are having bad luck and losing a lot, play Swiss as other people have said. You are still paying money, but should be able to get a pack or two back effectively cutting the cost of your next draft by 4-8 tix. Also, you can save money by trading tix for packs. I think RtR are going for around 3.35 a pack right now. 

I have been doing some 4-pack sealed as well and while it's not quite as fun as drafting I still enjoy it and it is by far the best bang for your buck. 
It certainly does feel like I have mana issues a lot more online than in real life.  Trying to work on it not tilting me though.  A little hard when running 2 colors and can never draw your second color or your second of a certain color while you watch your opponent play all 4 different basic lands of their deck in order without any fetching.  Happened the other night twice to me in the same match.  So I ended up holding out for a bit before I eventually lost.

The other thing I try to watch is if the other person is flooding or having mana issues too. 

As far as drafting I try to do it as much as possible.  Sometimes once a week, sometimes once a day.  In real life and online.  Though recently my in real life drafting has gone down while my online has gone up simply because of availability.  Plus I am kind of burned out on RTR draft right now so online offers the ability to do some of the other formats.
Yeah I was doing swiss at first and I was winning so much I ventured into 4322. I will go back to swiss and scale back a bit, save up some capital for gatecrash. Maybe I'll try some M13?

Swiss will be more relaxing; if I lose a match to manascrew at least that's not the end.

And yeah it's $14 not $15. A little cheaper if you get all tix and the trade for packs. Of course I am trading off my cards for more tix when possible, as I have little to no interest in constructed currently. There just aren't many cards, seems like, that are worth much.
I too draft once, maybe twice, a week. Buying packs with tix and selling cards aggressively on MtGO should keep costs down. Right now I am spending roughly $15 a month to keep up this pace.

I prefer to do Swiss in the beginnings to learn a set, and to see more cards and interactions since I get to play all 3 games, but will move to 84s after a while as the expected value for an 84 is better than Swiss as long as your match win percentage is above 50%.

Side note, do either Swiss or 84s, 4322s are a rip-off, there's 1 less prize pack in the payout so your expected value is lower than either Swiss or 84s for any win percentage.


I too draft once, maybe twice, a week. Buying packs with tix and selling cards aggressively on MtGO should keep costs down. Right now I am spending roughly $15 a month to keep up this pace.

I prefer to do Swiss in the beginnings to learn a set, and to see more cards and interactions since I get to play all 3 games, but will move to 84s after a while as the expected value for an 84 is better than Swiss as long as your match win percentage is above 50%.

Side note, do either Swiss or 84s, 4322s are a rip-off, there's 1 less prize pack in the payout so your expected value is lower than either Swiss or 84s for any win percentage.





It's a little more complicated than win percentage over 50%, because your win percentage isn't going to be constant across formats. But if it were constant than 50% would be the tipping point where you'd be better off playing 8-4 than Swiss.

The only plus I can see playing in 4322 is that you're playing against a group of people who can't immediately see that the EV is lower which should make it easier to win in that format :-p
I think it goes beyond the 1 pack difference.  If you constantly win your first match, than lose your second, you are already ahead in the 4322 over 84 and with swiss you still have to win 1 more game just to be even at this point.  Yes there is one pack difference, but if that one pack was going to someone else anyway what would you care?  i.e. going to the person who loses their first two matches and then gets the extra pack from their opponent dropping at that point.  Either that or the extra pack going to someone who beat you in the second round.

Probably really comes down to not only your win percentage, but where you get those wins.  This isn't fool proof because you get a random opponent in the first round, and random opponent in the next round based on how they did.  Though you can probably see if you pretty regularly lose or win your first game, and also if you regularly make it into the finals.
I've seen pretty solid mathematical proof that unless your winning percentage changes significantly from 4322s to 84s (like, we're talking ~20% here), there is no point where 4322s are more profitable than both Swiss and 84s purely in term of prize payout. Your case has to be ridiculously specific for 4322s to be the most profitable. It is not common enough that I'm going to believe anyone saying they are on that exact level without showing me detailed statistics of their drafts of Swiss, 4322 and 84s (probably at least 20 of each queue, preferably hundreds but that is unrealistic).
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
As someone who used to play only a little sealed, I'll tell you who 4322 appeals to.....people like me that know they won't normally win with a 3-0 record.  Even 2nd place seemed tough to come by.  I was usually 3rd or 4th....and getting 2 packs back when I only had to put 3 up plus the entry fee meant that I was only losing a few bucks per draft even though I was coming in dead last.

Sure, if you're an awesome drafter and consistantly win, 8-4 seems the better way to go.

For the "rest" of us....there's a reason why there's more 4322 in the queues than 84 

At the point everyone is playing Swiss there is no incentive for anyone to switch to a different payout structure. If the people who are consistently going WWW and WWL in Swiss decided they could get a better payout in 8-4 and switched into it, they would now be competing for the same number of total prize packs with people who switched into 8-4 for the same reasons. They can't all be winners, and at the point the people who are winning less in 8-4 than they were in Swiss realize this they will drop out and return to Swiss. Once that happens the people who were initially doing better in 8-4 than they were in Swiss will win less because the people they used to beat are back in Swiss. This cycle repeats itself until everyone is back in Swiss. 4322 has the same problems as 8-4 (steeper payout structure than Swiss), in addition to paying out one less pack in total.

I'm happy to be back in swiss. If I lose a match to screw/flood at least i have 2 other matches to at least play the deck I drafted. If I look at it from the perspective of "playing more" and worry less about the payout then it's more relaxing and enjoyable. And I don't mind putting in a few dollars here and there because of a lower payout. I just feel like if I were in an 8-4 my blood pressure would elevate every time I lost to screw/flood.
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