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New FAQ dropped

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#41
Midian

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Or just shutting down any arcane struggle that the Y-train is going to win with Alternate Historian....

#42
badash56

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Or just shutting down any arcane struggle that the Y-train is going to win with Alternate Historian....


Yes, but that can't be your only defense. She is getting pushed into the beyond instantly usually.

EDIT - that leads me to the other area - multiple outs. You're going to need multiple ways to disrupt the 'train'. Just counting on one card like the Historian won't be enough.
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#43
Wilbur

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- Festival: bah.

Ridiculous. You raise some good points, but to suggest that the Festival doesn't belong on the restricted list when Feed Her Young is already there? And the Cthulhu prophecy? Festival is the best and most reliable resource accelerator... and then it fixes your color match problems... and then it sets up absurd combos like Jamburg>Rift, Uroboros sacrifice loops, whatever.

#44
dboeren

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All resource acceleration isn't bad, but resource acceleration that's dirt cheap is probably not going to work out well. If you've got to do it, make it cost so that it doesn't disrupt the early game. Or - focus on discount cards that you can easily put limits on because once a card is on a domain there's no good way to limit what it gets used for anymore.

A discount card can work only on cards with a certain subtype, or only once per turn, or require you to discard a card or whatever you want. This is a much more controllable way to mete out acceleration and you can target it for specific themes. Plus, you actually create more design space because you can make multiple cards that discount for different factions/traits instead of only one card that builds a domain you can use to pay for anything.
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#45
MagnusArcanis

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You rang?

If you guys really want my opinions on this..... ok.

In concerns with the FAQ...

Things in the Ground - big nerf and removed from restricted list. TitG has always been a problem card in my opinion. It requires more effort to break now, but the potential for huge game swings still exist.

Shocking Transformation - since up until a couple days before nationals I thought it was on the list... I'm not suprised it finally made it's appearence. Shock had abuse written all over it from even the CCG days and like others have shared... I too can't believe it took so long for it make it on the list.

James Logan - I've suggested his restriction a few times in the past. The guy is scary good and since up to right before the FAQ was released he was in 3 of my top 4 decks... I can't say I'm suprised and like shocking transformation I can't help to wonder what took so long. :P

The Festival - I really don't think anyone should be suprised about it's restriction. While I agree that it could've made the list sooner, but doing everything we can to keep player cards off lists is an effort I fully support (this has always been my position, even before I started winning). I'm still hold out hope that one day Descendant of Eibon and The Festival will be taking off the list.

Mage's Machinations - The clarification put it back into what it was supposed to be. The erratta to return the characters would've made sense if it was allowed to work with the Hall of Champions as intended.... however, since that little tidbit didn't make in into the FAQ as I was once told it would... yah I'm a little angry about that, but I'll hear what Brad has to say about it before I'll let the rage settle in. :P

With the above alterations I would've thought the metagame to be super wide open. That is... except for the fact they didn't touch my nationals deck. Granted, I was missing my mill deck. It was a fun deck to play with (for me... not so fun to play against though lol), but I was prepared to let it go. Now... I imagine worlds is going to have 3 types of players.

1) People playing the mill.
2) People geared to beat the mill.
3) People ignoring the mill hoping that the people geard to beat the mill, actually beat the mill.

Now, don't take that the wrong way. This is 2013's challenge. It's kinda like 2010's challenge of Magah Birds. Every year there is a new challenge, and people whining/quitting the game because this year's challenge isn't one they like is kind of disappointing to me. On multiple levels. Mill is rather polarizing it seems. Believe it or not, I don't really like the archtype myself, but it's apart of the game. Rush, Tempo, Control, Combo, and Mill are the 5 basic archetypes for Call of Cthulhu. Instead of condeming FFG for allowing it to flourish, you should be praising them. Card games need to change. Each archetype should be allowed to flourish. Flourish, not dominate though... a fine line somtimes. Pre-gencon... the only deck I feared were other yithian decks. Now that everyone is ready for it... perhaps it has a chance to not dominate?

The Y-train did take a hit with Festival and Shocking being added to the resticted list. Will it be enough? No. But, everyone has full knowledge of the deck. Will that be enough? Maybe. The true strength of the Y-Train (and most of my previous decks) has been that no one excepted it. Until nationals, no one had really seen a highly tuned mill deck in Cthulhu before. People simply weren't prepared for it and what defenses their decks had weren't nearly enough.

So, to sum it up - Yithian Mill and the FAQ:
Yes, I think it sucks that the metagame has black hole to deal with again.
Yes, I'm suprised they didn't address it with the FAQ beyond cementing the gencon ruling.
No, I'm not shocked they left it alone.
No, I don't think there are any 'answers' to the deck.
Yes, I do think it can be defeated.
No, I don't think it can be defated on a regular basis.
Yes, I do think non-shub versions are perfectly viable.
Yes, I do think players should be prepared against non-shub versions.
Yes, I currently believe that the shub version is the most stable though.
Yes, I would've rather seen it addressed in someway.
No, I would prefer that it didn't be nerfed into obscurity.
No, I don't think it's worth quitting the game over... at all.
No, I don't think it will remain dominent forever.
No, I have no idea if it will take all of the major tournaments for rest of the year.
No, I'm not sure if I'll be using it at worlds.
Yes, I will be prepared for it though, which, of course, includes of the other versions as well.
Yes, I do think the game is still improving.
Yes, I think they should've given us the FAQ sooner, for not just worlds, but for all of the other tournaments across the globe as well.

Any other questions?

Oh. Yes. Domain acceleration (keep seperate from resource acceleration) / cost reduction is bad for this game's balance and actually narrows design space, not widen. In fact... I'm bold enough to say it's bad for balance for all games. The only positive it brings is thats gives the player the feel of pulling off a big trick. Which, is fun and more intriguing, but for game balance it's awful. But it's a simple matter of each cost tier having it's own levels of balance based on what players can do each turn. Domian accleration and cost reduction allows you to sacrifce... a little bit to skip a step (or more). Ie. A domain set up of 2/2/1 is supposed to be balance against 3/1/1 on turn 2. If a player, without any real scrifice, has to balance against 4/1/1 instead. A tier normally reserved to balance, against, 3/2/1 and 2/2/2. The implications of that are starggering and a bit too much to mention here (my post is probably long enough already lol).

But, those still on the fringe of whether or not to play in their respective tournaments... I urge you to come and play. Eventually the game will cycle back to a style you prefer and if attendance can continue to grow in the meantime; everyone will be better off in the long run no? Also, for those wishing to claim the title, you might not get a better chance. ;)
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#46
Tragic

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All resource acceleration isn't bad, but resource acceleration that's dirt cheap is probably not going to work out well.


I think that in most games this would be true, but CoC dose have a rather strong curve. The cards get very powerful towards the top of the trees. Accelerating the mana pool in this game has a much larger effect than in most others. The resource system is arguably the reason why this game hasn't died out long ago. It is just that good. Acceleration simply removes the one thig this game has that is truly unique and moves the entire meta into speed drops. I think small acceleration is a good thing but in general it is bad for card games, and really bad for this particular one.
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#47
konx

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Ridiculous. You raise some good points, but to suggest that the Festival doesn't belong on the restricted list when Feed Her Young is already there? And the Cthulhu prophecy? Festival is the best and most reliable resource accelerator... and then it fixes your color match problems... and then it sets up absurd combos like Jamburg>Rift, Uroboros sacrifice loops, whatever.


To be clear: I do think that Feed Her Young and the Cthulhu prophecy shouldn't be in the list either. They are banning cards even _before_ any actual tournament result, so I wonder if the person doing the banning and the person(s) designing the cards talk to each other.

To me the direction of the restricted list is quite clear; 4 main types of cards are in there at the moment:
1- good, general purpose (mainly neutral) cards: Eibon, Guardian Pillar. Cards that everyone can put in a deck and just make it better.
2- tutor/cheat into play effects (on this topic: at some point, I expect the Flooded Vault to end up in the list as well. This is the typical card that can only get better with releasing new cards, so I think it is pretty much doomed).
3- resource acceleration
4- "free actions" cards like Kopesh or Museum Curator

Then you have some cards that are a bit WTF, like the Itinerant Scholar or the Doppleganger which are basically banned, because I still have to see someone using them instead of another restricted and some cards like the Hastur attachment which are banned because of general consensus, I assume.

So, why do they keep printing cards in the 4 categories? And, in particular, in resource acceleration? Resource acceleration to be effective has to reach a minimum number of cards available in the same deck, so that you can reliably draw into it. Right now, it is just not possible (maybe for shub, if you use both Bubastis and one acceleration tool or the Mi Go). I would say: just stop printing it and print other cards, so we are all more happy!

About the restricting/enlarging the design space for decks: I think it doesn't change too much. If everyone has access to resource acceleration in the same way, what you are doing is just "powering up" the decks. What happens is that most of the decks, to be competitive, has to play acceleration. This is, IMHO, not bad, just different: right now, I have the feeling that what they are trying to accomplish with the bannings is level as much as possible the field so that even a casual player with a casual deck can play a game of CoC without having the feeling of being constantly behind. (which of course someone likes, someone doesn't, it is really just a matter of tastes).

Konx

#48
Tragic

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Not sure I am on board with all that Knox. Forcing deck archetypes, as in the forced inclusion of acceleration is a bad thing. Deck variety is the spice of card games, anything that forces certain deck types is bad. Now sure, there are levels to everything, but in general you want to be able to field as many types of decks as possible.

I think the focus of the FAQs are trying to make the game function better as a competitive game. CoC is a game very much rooted in the deck construction and piloting. There are very few deck that are not just steamrollers. Once a CoC deck starts to fire and the synergies are all interconnecting they become more and more unstoppable. Much like a combo deck, in fact I would say that all good CoC decks are a combo deck in any other game definition. The FAQ seams tl be trying to make the decks take longer to fire, and to remove "tricks" like tutoring to force them to fire with out a cold cost. Moving the game back into intelligent play and deck piloting, were tricks and counters create a game that can swing and sway... rather than one person win unchallenged.

I believe they are defiantly on the right track with the way they are taking the game. IMO they are not being ruthless enough. The LCG system means that there is no cycles, so the game design can not reset like in a traditional TCG. Any card is there forever. Now there are arguments syaing that they are creating a false cycle with the big box expansion packs, as in the power creep of those packs is a design to move the entire meta game into the most recent card pool.. creating a break, affectively removing the old card pool from use. Much like a cycle. I am not sure about this, but I do think the new cards are rather strong.

I expect more and more card to hit this restricted each faq, and not just from YogBox. I expect to see cards used for years and still considered strong to be removed to further push the meta into the new generation of cards.. starting at the MiskBox.

#49
Karrius

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To be clear: I do think that Feed Her Young and the Cthulhu prophecy shouldn't be in the list either. They are banning cards even _before_ any actual tournament result, so I wonder if the person doing the banning and the person(s) designing the cards talk to each other.



I believe most of the resource acceleration restriction (and the Nug change) came after last year's nationals, which was dominated by cards that cheated ancient ones into play second turn. Tom was also pushing for this pretty hard, and for good reason - it's really hard to deal with a Y'golnac or Nyarlothep coming out before you take your second turn.

Then you have some cards that are a bit WTF, like the Itinerant Scholar or the Doppleganger which are basically banned, because I still have to see someone using them instead of another restricted and some cards like the Hastur attachment which are banned because of general consensus, I assume.



Itinerant Scholar is restricted due to a loop that locks down your opponent's resources, isn't it? Doppleganger I have seen get some use - it's a solid card, although I'm not sure if it's restrict worthy.

#50
konx

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Not sure I am on board with all that Knox. Forcing deck archetypes, as in the forced inclusion of acceleration is a bad thing. Deck variety is the spice of card games, anything that forces certain deck types is bad. Now sure, there are levels to everything, but in general you want to be able to field as many types of decks as possible.


I know that my positions are not in line with the majority of the community, so not a problem there ^^.

I would like to point out one thing, anyway: resource acceleration is NOT a deck archetype. So, acceleration is not forcing any deck archetype. It is, instead, creating staple cards. Which are present in every game, despite any banning or restricting simply because some cards are better than others in doing something.

I think the focus of the FAQs are trying to make the game function better as a competitive game.


This is where I disagree the most. They are simply an easy way to fix what are perceived by the community as problems. (talking about restricting. If we talk about rule changes then I agree).

CoC is a game very much rooted in the deck construction and piloting.


As any other card game out there.

There are very few deck that are not just steamrollers. Once a CoC deck starts to fire and the synergies are all interconnecting they become more and more unstoppable. Much like a combo deck, in fact I would say that all good CoC decks are a combo deck in any other game definition.


I understand what you want to say, but it is misleading. A combo deck is just a deck where a certain combination of cards leads to victory. If you extend this definition then also a rush deck can be defined as combo, but I think we both agree that is not the case. On the other hand, all decks tend to have some synergies and combinations of cards that work well together, but again I wouldn't call this a combo (let's make an extreme example: a 50 characters deck which wants to put into play 3 chars per turn is very synergistic, probably, but not a combo deck ^^)

The FAQ seams tl be trying to make the decks take longer to fire, and to remove "tricks" like tutoring to force them to fire with out a cold cost. Moving the game back into intelligent play and deck piloting, were tricks and counters create a game that can swing and sway... rather than one person win unchallenged.


A person can win unchallenged only if there are no cards in the pool that can take care of a problem or if the opponent has a deck with no answers to a problem. Which is why Tom's deck won: no one was really expecting it. (this all comes down to the problem that the community is really small and there is no "metagame" for Cthulhu...which is also no facilitated by the fact that every few months they keep changing the ban list...if you don't let the player try to solve a problematic deck with the resources available there will never be such thing as a metagame)

I believe they are defiantly on the right track with the way they are taking the game. IMO they are not being ruthless enough. The LCG system means that there is no cycles, so the game design can not reset like in a traditional TCG. Any card is there forever.


Completely disagree. And I say this because I play Magic as well, and I play mostly Legacy; in that format the card pool is virtually the entire card pool (well over 10.000 cards). If you look at the cards used in the most winning decks you will see that the card pool is obviously much more reduced in reality (let's say between 200 to 500 cards, considering also the fringe sideboard cards?). But still, the deck variety is huge, and with huge I mean that there are good rush/combo/control decks (and everything in between) that can reliably win a tournament.

The entire discussion, in my view, can be reduced to this: as a player, do you accept that if you want to win you have to play certain cards and leave the others in the box?

If the answer is no (because you want to play your pet deck, because you want to play your combo that fires at turn 8 and not see the game end on turn 3, or whatever other reason), then all the restrictions they are doing are fine with you. They are basically forcing you to play subpar cards because you cannot play the good ones.

If the answer is yes (as in my case), then you don't like the restrictions, because they are taking away possibilities. The point is that often, what is perceived as a problem is also the solution to the problem.

Now there are arguments syaing that they are creating a false cycle with the big box expansion packs, as in the power creep of those packs is a design to move the entire meta game into the most recent card pool.. creating a break, affectively removing the old card pool from use. Much like a cycle. I am not sure about this, but I do think the new cards are rather strong.


Well, power creep is an inevitable process in card games.

BTW, if you don't already do it, I suggest you read the weekly column of Mark Rosewater (head designer and developer of Magic). You can skip all the expansions related articles and focus on the game design ones. They are full of insights and really helps in understanding what is wrong/good with card games.

I expect more and more card to hit this restricted each faq, and not just from YogBox. I expect to see cards used for years and still considered strong to be removed to further push the meta into the new generation of cards.. starting at the MiskBox.


Yeah, I expect the same: more and more bannings/restrictions. I just don't agree with all of them :)

About Itinerant Scholar: yeah, I know why it is banned (it actually comes from the CCG decks, the loop), I just fail to see this miracle combo deck that can lock all your domains so early to make it impossible for you to play.

As my last final remark, I want to stress one point: restrictions/banning is not good or bad per se. What I perceive as bad is this idea that as soon as there is something which is perceived as "too strong" people is calling for bans and they do them. This happens all the same also in Magic, but in their case they usually wait for a few months to collect data to support the players claims (which most of the time turn out to be wrong....). It is plenty of examples I could make to support my point, but it is well beyond this forum topic, so I leave it out (if interested, you can always send me a PM).

Anyway, I know that I am in minority here, just wanted to write out why :P

Konx
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#51
Tragic

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I know that my positions are not in line with the majority of the community, so not a problem there ^^.

No need to be embarrassed and apologise everyone has different opinions no one is any more right than anyone else.

I would like to point out one thing, anyway: resource acceleration is NOT a deck archetype. So, acceleration is not forcing any deck archetype. It is, instead, creating staple cards. Which are present in every game, despite any banning or restricting simply because some cards are better than others in doing something.

Acceleration is not an archetype but a tool of various archetypes. It is as integral and as part of one as anything, so much so that they can be talked about as one. Separating them is redundant and has little to do with the point witch is that if you are forced to use the same cards then the game surfers. Variation is the spice of life.

This is where I disagree the most. They are simply an easy way to fix what are perceived by the community as problems. (talking about restricting. If we talk about rule changes then I agree).

The community doesn't have as much affect as you think, Nothing said on these forums or FFGs have any bearing on the game design. Not in the short term at least. The design is done well in advance. As in way way way way way in advance. No amount of talk by the community will have any effect on the next or even the next 2 expansions. The changes in the FAQ have nothing to do with us or even the players. They are there to sculpt the design to allow the plans for the new expansions to run, not to address bitching in the community.


As any other card game out there.

Not at all. I think this game more than most is won before a card is even placed. The deck construction is by far the most involved part of this game, far more than playing it. It is all about getting the deck to start to coalesce, this synergy is all in the deck building and less in the playing. Sure.. all games have a degree of deck piloting and this is not different. Yet when I play this game (and have been from before the LCG) I have always felt that a win and a loss is purely in my deck choices, assuming I didn't make a blunder like a resource error. In this game you spend more time and thought on how your deck functions than on how your opponent functions.

I understand what you want to say, but it is misleading. A combo deck is just a deck where a certain combination of cards leads to victory. If you extend this definition then also a rush deck can be defined as combo, but I think we both agree that is not the case. On the other hand, all decks tend to have some synergies and combinations of cards that work well together, but again I wouldn't call this a combo (let's make an extreme example: a 50 characters deck which wants to put into play 3 chars per turn is very synergistic, probably, but not a combo deck ^^)

Again, the definition of a combo deck is pretty far from the point I was trying to make. Sorry it wasn't clear enough for you. What I was saying is that a CoC deck fires in many ways like a combo deck. When a CoC deck starts to come together it completely crushes the opponent, it steam rolls over them. The better the deck design the less the opponent is able to do anything. They are all about denial. In fact I would say denial is probably at the heart of this game. A combo deck is much like this as well, as in once it fires it is game over. All good coc decks are also like this, not in the same way obviously, but enough. I think if you showed some of the decks like YogMill or Turn2 they would be seen as combo decks. I mean YogMill isn't much different from grapeshot. In MTG is it?

A person can win unchallenged only if there are no cards in the pool that can take care of a problem or if the opponent has a deck with no answers to a problem. Which is why Tom's deck won: no one was really expecting it. (this all comes down to the problem that the community is really small and there is no "metagame" for Cthulhu...which is also no facilitated by the fact that every few months they keep changing the ban list...if you don't let the player try to solve a problematic deck with the resources available there will never be such thing as a metagame)

Hmm, not sure about that. “Tom's” deck was well known.. most people made it the day they got the cards and kept refining it. Most people I know do not play it as it is just lame. Gencon is a tiny event. The regular meets at my local used to have more tables and players than GenCon has had in years every 2 weeks. That has changed over the last year though. Netrunner really took a lot of players out. GenCon is not a bar to look at to set the stage.


Still I do agree that there is not enough time for players to really get into the games. The cards come out to fast for the size of the player base. I do not think this has much relation to the FAQ but more in FFG wanting to make tons of money. They should relase only 2 times a year, maybe 3, so 1 release after all the events.

The entire discussion, in my view, can be reduced to this: as a player, do you accept that if you want to win you have to play certain cards and leave the others in the box?

If the answer is no (because you want to play your pet deck, because you want to play your combo that fires at turn 8 and not see the game end on turn 3, or whatever other reason), then all the restrictions they are doing are fine with you. They are basically forcing you to play subpar cards because you cannot play the good ones.

If the answer is yes (as in my case), then you don't like the restrictions, because they are taking away possibilities. The point is that often, what is perceived as a problem is also the solution to the problem.

See I think this is exactly what this is NOT about. It has nothing to do with the players wanting to play certain decks or use w/e card, or have access to the entire pool. It is about the designers trying to sculpt the game into their vision of it. Not as in what cards are available, but about what the themeing, what the goals of the game is. Dose a faction represent what? Do they want skulls to be more prominent.. stuff like that.
There is not really any such thing as a two powerful or less powerful card in the grand scheme of it all. You play with what ever tools you are allowed to and we will always find the most powerful decks if we have time, in fact people find the power decks a lot faster then the answers to them.
I strongly doubt that designers really are thinking in these terms at all, but more in terms of the entire game as a hole. At least it should be. If they are cutting cards based on winging on a forum after only a few months with the cards, then there is no hope for this game.


BTW, if you don't already do it, I suggest you read the weekly column of Mark Rosewater (head designer and developer of Magic). You can skip all the expansions related articles and focus on the game design ones. They are full of insights and really helps in understanding what is wrong/good with card games.

MTG is like the worst card game ever! Well it was good back in the 90s but man have they fallen off the wagon. The last set that was any good was like in early 2000s. This is the perfect example of what NOT to do in a game as far as I am concerned. I have zero respect for the current designers. ****.. look at Innistrad!! rofl what a mess... hehe.

#52
orso

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Oh. Yes. Domain acceleration (keep seperate from resource acceleration) / cost reduction is bad for this game's balance and actually narrows design space, not widen. In fact... I'm bold enough to say it's bad for balance for all games. The only positive it brings is thats gives the player the feel of pulling off a big trick. Which, is fun and more intriguing, but for game balance it's awful. But it's a simple matter of each cost tier having it's own levels of balance based on what players can do each turn. Domian accleration and cost reduction allows you to sacrifce... a little bit to skip a step (or more). Ie. A domain set up of 2/2/1 is supposed to be balance against 3/1/1 on turn 2. If a player, without any real scrifice, has to balance against 4/1/1 instead. A tier normally reserved to balance, against, 3/2/1 and 2/2/2. The implications of that are starggering and a bit too much to mention here (my post is probably long enough already lol).


Concerning this point I'm very curious to see what the Syndicate expansion with Reallocate will bring into the game. :)
I apprechiate this new kind of ressource "manipulation"!!!
I guess it will change a lot because it offers an alternative to pumping up 1 domain to play big guys with current acceleration (now restricted-most of them).
It's not just adjusting the opponents domains, it offers the possibility to focus on smaller guys and let them swarm in masses (it lets you gain a 4th domain /or 5th if you want to). Combined with some card draw machanics... ;)
I'm expecting a "new kind of rush decks" and I'm really looking forward for the next expansion! :)
The last expansions offerd a lot of good 2 and 3 cost characters IMHO.

So maybe the current acceleration will no longer be that strong because Reallocate looks like a good answer to it?! (perhaps Festival or Feed her Young will no longer be restricted?...we'll see... ;))



Edit:
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Edited by orso, 20 October 2013 - 01:57 PM.


#53
konx

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Acceleration is not an archetype but a tool of various archetypes. It is as integral and as part of one as anything, so much so that they can be talked about as one. Separating them is redundant and has little to do with the point witch is that if you are forced to use the same cards then the game surfers. Variation is the spice of life.


To me the sentence sounds contradictory. Acceleration in itself is exactly a tool that allows variation (and again: the initial assumption is that the same form of acceleration is available to everyone). Evidence for this statement: old CCG era. Everyone had rituals, and there was deck variation (jump deck, domain lock, rip off, to name a few of the famous ones).

As you say, it's a tool: if it is there you use it, otherwise you don't. But it has to be there for everyone. Right now, only shub has constant access to it, that's the problem. Not acceleration itself.

The community doesn't have as much affect as you think, Nothing said on these forums or FFGs have any bearing on the game design. Not in the short term at least. The design is done well in advance. As in way way way way way in advance. No amount of talk by the community will have any effect on the next or even the next 2 expansions. The changes in the FAQ have nothing to do with us or even the players. They are there to sculpt the design to allow the plans for the new expansions to run, not to address bitching in the community.


Kopesh released. Community saying "OMG this is too powerful" --> restricted.
Miska/Hastur with curator and hastur support; community says "OMG this is too powerful" --> restricted.
Logan/Necro: community says "OMG this is too powerful" --> restricted.
Marcus:community says "OMG this is too powerful" --> restricted.

This is the pattern I have experienced. The design is maybe not made with the community in mind, but banning looks like that, to me.


Not at all. I think this game more than most is won before a card is even placed. The deck construction is by far the most involved part of this game, far more than playing it. It is all about getting the deck to start to coalesce, this synergy is all in the deck building and less in the playing. Sure.. all games have a degree of deck piloting and this is not different. Yet when I play this game (and have been from before the LCG) I have always felt that a win and a loss is purely in my deck choices, assuming I didn't make a blunder like a resource error. In this game you spend more time and thought on how your deck functions than on how your opponent functions.


Well, I need some clarification here because I don't get it. In all cards game, you have a process of building a deck and playing it. I have seen great builders that never win tournaments and poor builder that always win with netdecked decks.

I don't see how CoC is different. you can have the most tuned deck ever, but if you fail to play it (or even worse, you play it in the wrong metagame) you just fail.

Again, the definition of a combo deck is pretty far from the point I was trying to make. Sorry it wasn't clear enough for you. What I was saying is that a CoC deck fires in many ways like a combo deck. When a CoC deck starts to come together it completely crushes the opponent, it steam rolls over them. The better the deck design the less the opponent is able to do anything. They are all about denial. In fact I would say denial is probably at the heart of this game. A combo deck is much like this as well, as in once it fires it is game over. All good coc decks are also like this, not in the same way obviously, but enough. I think if you showed some of the decks like YogMill or Turn2 they would be seen as combo decks. I mean YogMill isn't much different from grapeshot. In MTG is it?


I still don't get the point, so let me ask you a question: the Agency/STL deck which is around the forum right now...do you think that is a combo deck? because to me, it is not. It is a (very good) fast deck - rush, if you want. It has a very sound strategy, and if it can accomplish it, it wins. But it shares nothing with a combo deck, as I intend it.

Hmm, not sure about that. “Tom's” deck was well known.. most people made it the day they got the cards and kept refining it. Most people I know do not play it as it is just lame. Gencon is a tiny event. The regular meets at my local used to have more tables and players than GenCon has had in years every 2 weeks. That has changed over the last year though. Netrunner really took a lot of players out. GenCon is not a bar to look at to set the stage.


If Tom's deck was well known, and no one came prepared there is a problem with the players, not with the deck :P I mean, it is clearly good and if you discover a good deck either you play it, or you find a way to beat it. Or you don't care about it, but then you know you are going to lose and don't complain about the deck being too strong.

There is not really any such thing as a two powerful or less powerful card in the grand scheme of it all. You play with what ever tools you are allowed to and we will always find the most powerful decks if we have time, in fact people find the power decks a lot faster then the answers to them.


Well, I think we can both find examples of cards which are just way too fringe/weak to be played, so yes, there are too powerful and less powerful cards, even in the designers view.

I strongly doubt that designers really are thinking in these terms at all, but more in terms of the entire game as a hole. At least it should be. If they are cutting cards based on winging on a forum after only a few months with the cards, then there is no hope for this game.


Oh, I have hope as long as they keep printing cards :) Again, I just don't see any real reasoning behind most of the bannings (some of them, I can agree pretty quickly, like Eibon, for example).

MTG is like the worst card game ever! Well it was good back in the 90s but man have they fallen off the wagon. The last set that was any good was like in early 2000s. This is the perfect example of what NOT to do in a game as far as I am concerned. I have zero respect for the current designers. ****.. look at Innistrad!! rofl what a mess... hehe.


Well, I guess that I have to disagree there, if nothing more because the game is alive after what, 20 years now? It has many problems, but from my point of view, it has never been so balanced as right now in Legacy and Modern: plenty of different decks to play, plenty of variety (notice: I don't play standard, so I don't know how the set are played in that format). The real problem I have with Magic is just the mana system. After Cthulhu, any system that requires some cards just to generate resources is inferior :)

Konx

#54
dboeren

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I think that in most games this would be true, but CoC dose have a rather strong curve. The cards get very powerful towards the top of the trees. Accelerating the mana pool in this game has a much larger effect than in most others. The resource system is arguably the reason why this game hasn't died out long ago. It is just that good. Acceleration simply removes the one thig this game has that is truly unique and moves the entire meta into speed drops. I think small acceleration is a good thing but in general it is bad for card games, and really bad for this particular one.


If it were true that all acceleration was bad, then it would have to follow that each individual acceleration card was overpowered, wouldn't it?

And yet, there are cards like Silver Twilight Lodge (TOotST) that I really never see anyone use. Here is an acceleration card that doesn't cause issues because it's costed high enough that it's not an auto-include and by the time you are likely to play it the main "race" portion of resourcing has mostly been run. That is, I don't really expect someone to go 3-1-1 and drop this immediately - they have pressure on them to get characters out at this point so realistically it likely has to wait another turn at least.

I would say that the new Nug isn't really a problem either. He's useful, but his acceleration happens late enough in the game that the main ramping is over - your opponent may have already stopped resourcing at all before he can show up.

There's also design space I think for cards like The Groundskeeper (TOotST) where a discount is available but for the cost of something else. Discard a card, sacrifice a card, lose a resource, mill some cards, drive someone insane, discounted character comes into play exhausted or insane, etc... There are a variety of costs you can apply to make each use of a discount cost you something significant so that it doesn't become overpowered.

At some level, if Feed Her Young cost more it could probably come off the restricted list too. Still not ok at 3? What about 4? Eventually there's a level where the card is no longer an issue and pushing it back later in the game preserves the sanctity of the resource ramping system (which I agree is one of the great features of the game).

#55
Tragic

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I think that the cost reduction cards are a good middle ground for acceleration. Things like Anthropology Advisor (Core) and Inter-dimensional Transporter (TTB) are the best.. ones that keys of traits rather than factions like say Priestess of Bubastis (Core). I think while these are powerful they are not breaking the base game design in a way I feel makes the entire game unfun to play. In fact I still think these reduction cards can be problematic.. but not nearly as much as acceleration cards, see what I id there! used different terms :) hehe.. yeah but seriously.. I do think these are in fact different affects.

I'm mainly talking about accelerating the placement of domain resources. So you can build domains extremely fast and then use those domains to power any card of any type, affectively moving the entire game to "end game". When those effects are using in conjunction with cost reducers the game breaks imo.

#56
dboeren

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I have no problem with that terminology to differentiate them. They have somewhat similar effects, but they go about them differently.

#57
Jhaelen

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I believe the change to Things in the Ground is at least partially prompted by the release of Flooded Vault in the Venice set since with that combination it's twice as reliable to get TitG out early in the game which was one of the weaknesses of a TitG deck and why people used to run the combination with Museum Curator before both cards were restricted.

Then they should have put Flooded Vault on the restricted list instead. It's eventually going to end up there, anyway, since it's now _the_ best tutor for support cards of all factions.

About Itinerant Scholar: yeah, I know why it is banned (it actually comes from the CCG decks, the loop), I just fail to see this miracle combo deck that can lock all your domains so early to make it impossible for you to play.

Well, mzi played it last year in Liege. He used Shocking Transformation to get Logan into play and saerched for the Shub Necronomicon to play and revive Logan along with the Itinerant Scholar over and over. Of course now _all_ pieces required for the combo are restricted, so it's not going to be repeated (at least in this particular way).

The banning of Shocking Transformation took me by surprise mainly because it's a card from the Core Set (!), so it's been around since the LCG started and suddenly they decide it's too powerful?
They're right in a way, of course, since it's at the core of every conbo deck that requires a particular character. Unfortunately, that's exactly where I've been putting my hopes when searching for decks that can reliably beat a Yithian deck. At least Flooded Vault is left, so support card combos can still work.

I've played a lot of casual decks in the past months, testing several discarded ideas: a Polar deck, a Things in the Ground Deck, an exhaustion deck, a resouce/domain denial deck, etc. They're all fun to play but it's very hard to get them to work reliably enough to be elevated to tournament level. Oh, and in our casual games we've banned all cards with effects triggerable from the discard.

I agree with Tom's prediction about what we'll see in Liege:
1) People playing the mill.
2) People geared to beat the mill.
3) People ignoring the mill hoping that the people geard to beat the mill, actually beat the mill.

I was in category 2), but after the FAQ, I'll probably end up in category 3) and simply forfeit any game in which my opponent falls in category 1).

#58
Danigral

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Then they should have put Flooded Vault on the restricted list instead. It's eventually going to end up there, anyway, since it's now _the_ best tutor for support cards of all factions.



I like how Tom phrased it as the "challenge" for this year. If we look at the tournament season as a puzzle to solve. I think without a firm meta, we can't really know the answers unless we try to "break the code" so to speak, but I don't like that the designers have presented this puzzle to us.

As Badash said, you won't be able to ignore arcane struggles anymore, or have very quick answers to threats early game. A few things could help. Some supports like Snow Graves to stall the Interstellar Migration trigger, or Library of Alexandria to remove the arcane struggle of wherever MotM is committed. Flooded Vault can pull either. Of course, Alternative Historian. Domain draining/resource destruction like Aliki or Torch the Joint, or maybe even Desertification if they have Pnakotus out to keep y-train from playing too much stuff. Prepared Alienist.

Will this water down the deck to much, though? Would it be better to just try to out-rush y-train? And if so, would a deck like that be able to win vs. "normal" decks?

#59
Unnamable

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Yeah, Toms' assessment is fairly accurate but also quite two-faced. On one hand pointing out the negative impact the deck will have on the metagame and on the other characterizing those that choose to express their concern as whiners or criticize those that choose to skip the "challenge" this year. I didn't prereg, I don't have a free pass/first round buy and I will still be making the considerable road-trip but I can totally understand why and won't criticize those that have decided that this is the final straw for them. I suppose Tom is an ambassador for the game and that makes it tough to speak your mind but maintain a positive spin.

#60
dboeren

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I suppose Tom is an ambassador for the game and that makes it tough to speak your mind but maintain a positive spin.


With the size of our community, I feel that we are all ambassadors for the game. Tom may be better known than most, but when a potential new player walks into the local game store I'm pretty sure Tom isn't there to meet him and teach him the game or loan him cards to play with. You are. I am. We all are. And really, outside of the existing CoC playerbase I'm not sure many people know who Tom is anyway.

Whatever happens with the Y-train deck is mostly drama. Can anyone here name something currently broken in the game that's been that way for a year? Six months? When there are problems they get fixed, FFG has always been good about that. Not instantly, nor do I think they should. Wasn't there a complaint just a couple posts up about how FFG "fixes" things too quickly when the community freaks out over something? They want to take the time to study this a bit more and decide what needs to be done. Plus, a lot of the devs are super-busy traveling around for the Netrunner Plugged-In tour so that means they're not sitting around the office doing testing and trying out different potential fixes.
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