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Falaris
12-26-2013, 05:55 AM
There are just not enough quality fixers/'dual lands' in the first set to make multicolor aggro decks anywhere close to consistent. Since the only 'fixing' land is a terramorphic expanse, this leads to a metagame of mono-shard aggro decks and 2 (sometimes 3) color control decks. That environment gets stale pretty quickly. While the last thing I would want the game to do is mirror Magic in everything, one thing that 'they' do get right is knowing they need a diversity of mana options in the first set of their block, which Set 1 effectively is.

If the only viable aggro decks in the format are mono-colored because of consistency issues, that leads to a fairly stagnant metagame.

Ritter
12-26-2013, 06:46 AM
There are just not enough quality fixers/'dual lands' in the first set to make multicolor aggro decks anywhere close to consistent. Since the only 'fixing' land is a terramorphic expanse, this leads to a metagame of mono-shard aggro decks and 2 (sometimes 3) color control decks. That environment gets stale pretty quickly. While the last thing I would want the game to do is mirror Magic in everything, one thing that 'they' do get right is knowing they need a diversity of mana options in the first set of their block, which Set 1 effectively is.

If the only viable aggro decks in the format are mono-colored because of consistency issues, that leads to a fairly stagnant metagame.

Although I can't currently play the alpha (Mac client blues), I do feel your sentiment. Since I was playing from just about the beginning of the alpha, I too felt a feeling of stagnancy pretty quickly.

Team Spicy Brews! made it a point to try out just about every combination of cards the alpha had to offer, which went a long way to making the alpha not get boring. After a while though (around 160 combined videos from Beepharoni and myself), we did sort of run out of decks to make and interesting videos to show you. Luckily, CZE kept adding in cards slowly to keep the alpha sort of fresh.

After many weeks of playing in the alpha, I can honestly tell you that it is not a problem with stagnancy as you describe it. It is actually a stagnancy as a function of pure time. The alpha has already been working for over two full months, so people are going to start to get plain old bored of the cards. This has nothing to do with the resources available. This is completely about the way a rotating environment of cards is supposed to work.

If this was a fully released game, we would be nearing the first rotation of cards where a new set would come in, completely shifting the metagame and opening up a whole new slew of possible deck combinations. As it stands, the best we are getting is between 3-8 new cards every 2 weeks or so to shake things up. This is a very minor shaking up compared to a real rotation, so people are simply incorporating these new cards into existing strategies or trying to build totally new decks without the weapons truly at their disposal yet.

If you think there is stagnancy now, wait another 10 months while we play with the same set of cards as they slowly trickle in the missing cards 3-8 at a time every 1-2 weeks. By next September (assuming they are closing in on Beta/actual release), Set 1 is going to be completely figured out by deck builders and will leave very little to the imagination. Even worse! Once the game is really released and Set 1 is put into a real rotation, we will have to wait ANOTHER 3-4 months (can't remember how long they said it will be between their set releases) before we get Set 2.

BlackRoger
12-26-2013, 11:45 AM
Funny, I just made a similar post around a week and a half ago.
I agree with you on the shard fixing issue, however I did get an answer from shaggy in my thread saying there are plans in the works for fixing in one of the near sets, so lets remain optimistic :)
link to my post: http://forums.cryptozoic.com/showthread.php?t=31210

Ritter, while I agree with you that there is no stagnance and there is a large veriety of decks going around, the fact remains that this veriety is only at the control/mid-range decks.
aggro decks at the moment are mostly mono-red with a little red/green (the latter is alot of fun, but suffers from consistency issues).
Have not seen black/red aggro in a long while even though it was supposed to be an orc "thing".

Ritter
12-26-2013, 12:12 PM
Ritter, while I agree with you that there is no stagnance and there is a large veriety of decks going around, the fact remains that this veriety is only at the control/mid-range decks.

This is not necessarily because of shard fixing, this is because there are no combo decks in the metagame right now. I won't link to it here, but just last night I wrote a fairly lengthy response as to the benefits of having combo decks in the metagame. It is in the Hex Alpha Discussion, thread name "Infinite/degenrate combo's."

Along with that discussion, I also do make mention of how shard fixing would help out in general to build more midrange decks of varying styles. Time shall tell what makes those changes in the metagame people are hoping for.

funktion
12-26-2013, 01:22 PM
I dissagree entirely. I've been running two color agro quite a bit and having very little problems with consistency. The threshold system makes a big difference if you are someone who's accustomed to magic's land system. Threshold is quite a bit more flexible.

There are some interesting things you can do, but with only ~360 cards once set 1 is released it is going to get stale at some point. There are only so many viable decks you can build. I play a lot of block constructed on MTGO and this is a pretty normal thing.

We'll get shard fixing soon enough in a future set, I wouldn't be too concerned about it now. It is just a luxury which you are used to having every single set in MTG. On a tangent, I actually wish MTG had a little less fixing every now and then. Currently though it is really not that stifling, or at least I don't find it to be.

ossuary
12-26-2013, 02:53 PM
My blood/ruby aggro deck works quite nicely, and can win a fair amount of the time even with only 3 resources (though 4 is better).

Handsofevil
12-26-2013, 04:29 PM
I would disagree that there are little combo decks... They made a HUGE showing in the Tournament of Streamers just a few weeks ago. Agro has actually fallen away from favor... As for shard fixing specifically. Set 1 is designed to lay the groundwork for the game. It's not intended to be all encompassing and include tons of variety. The point is it's relatively simple to help people learn the game and understand all the concepts. Along with Shaggy's post, I have seen a few other confirmation from CZE that they have plenty of variety in the works, even for Set 2 and 3. I think this is a premature post considering we don't even have all of Set 1. If you look at MTG, since someone already brought it up, how many sets actually have much mana fixing? Very few have more than 1 or two cards, and they are generally rather color specific. Shard of Fate is completely neutral. The only time mana fixing surges in MTG is the Ravnica sets. Give it time, and you'll see amazing things here.

funktion
12-26-2013, 09:50 PM
I would disagree that there are little combo decks... They made a HUGE showing in the Tournament of Streamers just a few weeks ago.

Kinda curious which ones, because I haven't seen a single deck yet that I would classify as a "combo" deck. There are quite a few synergy decks out there, but don't think any combos have cropped up which I know of.

Handsofevil
12-26-2013, 11:10 PM
You also have to look at combos differently in this game, at least so far. It's more "themed" decks than anything. There are no two card combos, or three card, as in MTG.

ErnieK
12-26-2013, 11:29 PM
It's been a very, very long time since I looked at Magic Cards, let alone Core Set and never original Set 1 cards... but are we really upset that in Set 1, the most basic and fundamental set that will ever be released for this game, that there aren't dual lands or other other multi-shard resources? Don't you think that's something that SHOULD be saved for down the road, Set 2 or 3? I think they've already put in too many mechanics, things that took a game like MtG YEARS to integrate into the game (speaking of things like Steadfast, Swiftstrike and such).

Remember, this is just the ground floor, the foundation to build from. If you include everything from square-one, you've got no where to go for the future except gimmick mechanics and power-creep. But that's just one opinion. I can understand how you could feel the need for something you've gotten so used to already having elsewhere.

Falaris
12-27-2013, 12:05 AM
It's been a very, very long time since I looked at Magic Cards, let alone Core Set and never original Set 1 cards... but are we really upset that in Set 1, the most basic and fundamental set that will ever be released for this game, that there aren't dual lands or other other multi-shard resources? Don't you think that's something that SHOULD be saved for down the road, Set 2 or 3? I think they've already put in too many mechanics, things that took a game like MtG YEARS to integrate into the game (speaking of things like Steadfast, Swiftstrike and such).

Remember, this is just the ground floor, the foundation to build from. If you include everything from square-one, you've got no where to go for the future except gimmick mechanics and power-creep. But that's just one opinion. I can understand how you could feel the need for something you've gotten so used to already having elsewhere.

Mana fixing is something integral to every game. Its not an advanced mechanic. It allows a variety of decks to flourish. Right now you have primarily mono color aggro, 2 color midrange, and any number of colors for true end game control. When your aggro decks are 'monored' 'monowhite' 'monoblack' or almost mono color decks that splash a couple cards that gets stale quick.

You make mention of this being the first set, where you build the foundation. You also make mention of Magic, and how it took years to integrate this stuff into the game. You should look at an Alpha card list sometime. Dual Lands, Moxen, Birds of Paradise. There are a number of cards in the very first set that allowed you to actually build a variety of decks.

VeScorp
12-27-2013, 12:53 AM
I dissagree entirely. I've been running two color agro quite a bit and having very little problems with consistency. The threshold syste
I don't even use SoF in aggro, and i feel quite the same

Xtopher
12-27-2013, 01:39 AM
By it's nature, I think constructed gets stale pretty quickly, no matter what the game or current set and we could be in for a long haul with just this set.

The real question is: how does the game draft? Once we're at that point it will be easier to correctly assess what the game could use. This issue is coming up prematurely about three different ways and is a pretty minor one, imo.

blakegrandon
12-27-2013, 07:28 AM
Mana fixing is something integral to every game. Its not an advanced mechanic. It allows a variety of decks to flourish. Right now you have primarily mono color aggro, 2 color midrange, and any number of colors for true end game control. When your aggro decks are 'monored' 'monowhite' 'monoblack' or almost mono color decks that splash a couple cards that gets stale quick.

Even with "mana fixing" aggro will primarily always be mono color.

Why?

Because mono color is more efficient no matter how much "mana fixing" there is to compensate. It will ALWAYS be more efficient when you want to draw certain cards and be able to play them to minimize the risk of not having said resource.

The only way to truly "mana fix" to promote multicolor aggro would be to get rid of mana in the first place, which would make the game boring and remove the hard choices people have to make.

When I build a deck I will usually pick the core cards, then I'll overload on complementary cards that would go well with 4-8 cards that I started with. The problem is I end up with usually 80-120 cards, which means a lot of cutting and decision making. By your logic everyone plays 60 card decks but I want to play 120 card decks so the entire format should be changed to cater to me.

No, that's not how it works, I cut down to 60 and play what makes sense, no amount of mana fixing changes basic logic or mechanics.

I play a 3 shard deck with pretty good results, the 2 threshold(for most cards) helps a LOT and is far superior to MTG when it first came out.

Can you play a 5 card aggro? Sure! But you're going to have mixed results because the more colors you add the harder it is to get what you want.

A question for you if you don't mind, do you want mana fixing with "penalties" or just the ability to produce multiple shards with one card? MTG has had "mana fixes" that cost you in some way(doing damage, comes into play tapped, etc), which IMO I usually avoid because they're less efficient or have said cost.

The problem I see is from a coding perspective, shards aren't actually cards once in play,yes you have things like shards of fate but when you play it it fixes one shard and not something that can be changed at a whim.

Judging an entire game based on set 1 is like judging an entire movie based on a trailer that you barely even watched... Then again these are forums and forums tend to devolve into demands and unrealistic expectations. Hold your horses, wait until set 2 or 3 to bring out the pitchforks.

Ritter
12-27-2013, 08:27 AM
I think keeping the sources pretty basic in the first set is the correct move. Like I've said before in other threads, people are going to get bored of Set 1 (or whatever you want to call the card set available in the Alpha) because of how long we have been playing with the same cards just for the sake of helping them test it out. When the game is actually released and new sets are dropping every 3-4 months on the regular, we won't be complaining about sets or metagames getting stale because they will be rotating in a fixed period of time regardless.


A question for you if you don't mind, do you want mana fixing with "penalties" or just the ability to produce multiple shards with one card? MTG has had "mana fixes" that cost you in some way(doing damage, comes into play tapped, etc), which IMO I usually avoid because they're less efficient or have said cost.

Mana fixing without penalties can only be done once, since you are effectively making a card that is extremely streamlined and basic. You can make variations of it for each color combination, or even for tricolors, but there's really nothing more to do with it once you design a no-penalty "mana fixing" land.

Designing a variation that has some sort of penalty leaves a lot of design space open. You can make them deal damage to you when activated. Deal damage to you when they are first played. Require you to sacrifice another threshold to add additional threshold to your pool (which makes it impossible to play first turn of the game). And so on and so on....


You in general always want to have the option open to have some sort of mana fixing in your Standard Constructed rotation. If you print dual color sources right off the bat with no penalty, then they will either have to reprint them later in the game for newer rotations, or leave people always wishing for them back. You will hear the endless crying of people who can't understand why they no longer have penalty free mana fixing available to them, and instead have to settle for lower power and higher cost (in life, time, etc.) resources.

Aethnen
12-27-2013, 02:49 PM
I couldn't agree more with the OP. In MTG tournament play, 10 or more (sometimes even as many as 18) "dual lands"/"mana fixers" are required to make a deck successfully top tier and consistent enough to win in tournaments versus mono-color decks.

Something as simple as adding an "Evolving Wilds" type resource which pulls out a resource from your deck and puts it into play for "0/1" would go a long way to helping Set 1 create multi-color decks that are more successful more often.

Hell even adding a "Wayfarer's Bauble" or the 3 cost artifacts that generate a specific color. How about replacing Chloraphyl with true mana-fixing like "Lay of the Land"? That would make it so that at least one color has mana-fixing to keep it from being overpowered.

Just my $.02

hex_colin
12-27-2013, 03:02 PM
All of Entrath's problems don't need to be solved in Set 1... Patience... ;)

GrinningBuddha
12-27-2013, 03:05 PM
Something as simple as adding an "Evolving Wilds" type resource which pulls out a resource from your deck and puts it into play for "0/1" would go a long way to helping Set 1 create multi-color decks that are more successful more often.



Uhhh...

http://hex.tcgbrowser.com/images/cards/big/ShardsOfFate.jpg

Aethnen
12-27-2013, 03:09 PM
Meaning there needs to more than the 4 shards already there. Sorry for not being clear but we need more than 4 IMHO.

Edit: Evolving Wilds also takes a resource from your deck which adds to the drawing consistency even if it is only by one card. Helps make up for the turn loss of 0/1.

Xenavire
12-27-2013, 03:14 PM
Meaning there needs to more than the 4 shards already there. Sorry for not being clear but we need more than 4 IMHO.

Frankly, I have been seeing less wins while using Shards of fate than I have without it in my multishard decks. It is simply losing out on too much - and when I desperately need the fixing in a deck, I use it, with moderate success.

But losing out on the charge and the usable resource puts you a long way behind when you top-deck it while you are waiting to cast something. It makes for what is basically a dead draw when you don't need the colour fixing. I can't wait for adaptable infusion device - theres some good colour fixing. Counts as an artifact when played, so it triggers artifact based effects, and you can use it later on to draw a card. And it doesn't replace a resource, so you can colourfix as well as ramp if you need to.

Aethnen
12-27-2013, 03:25 PM
I can't wait for adaptable infusion device - theres some good colour fixing. Counts as an artifact when played, so it triggers artifact based effects, and you can use it later on to draw a card. And it doesn't replace a resource, so you can colourfix as well as ramp if you need to.

Good example of something that would help that's already included in Set 1. "Cycling" (letting you throw the card away and draw a new card for a cost, kinda like the infusion device) is a mechanic they could add to the mana fixers to help balance out the problems you mentioned. Could be added to a dual land (something I don't think Magic ever did) or it could be added to single color resources to help with drawing up the right color resources faster.