Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor

@brianpk80 Only argument I would make on the workshop value part is, if someone does not have $500 to cover emergency expenses, but own a $20k shops deck, they have life priorities mixed up.
I don't think workshop needs restricted, but I don't agree that the financial value of a card should be part of the discussion. We are talking a format where a lot of the cards cost a ton of money.

@Smmenen

"For more than two years, we fought to get this corrected. Although the letter that Rich and I wrote pleading to remove power-level errata ultimately changed policy, Wizards failed to correct the power level errata that was left intact on Time Vault. When I spoke with Richard Garfield at 2008 Nationals, I was able to get the evidence needed to correct this, told Wizards, and the mistake was corrected in short order."

This is the article that years ago sparked my desire to crusade and champion Zodiac Dragons reversion back to its original intent. The card doesn't do today what it was intended to do in design.

Join me Steven. You also have a lot of influence on these things!

Bring Zodiac Dragon to Vintage!

last edited by gkraigher

@gkraigher said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen

"For more than two years, we fought to get this corrected. Although the letter that Rich and I wrote pleading to remove power-level errata ultimately changed policy, Wizards failed to correct the power level errata that was left intact on Time Vault. When I spoke with Richard Garfield at 2008 Nationals, I was able to get the evidence needed to correct this, told Wizards, and the mistake was corrected in short order."

This is the article that years ago sparked my desire to crusade and champion Zodiac Dragons reversion back to its original intent. The card doesn't do today what it was intended to do in design.

Join me Steven. You also have a lot of influence on these things!

Bring Zodiac Dragon to Vintage!

I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I do not support that position. And I'll explain why it's a problematic position.

Power-level errata was a policy tool in the early days of Magic where cards were periodically nerfed or changed away from their original design intent and ruled functionality to weaken them or break up some crazy combo. This happened to cards like Time Vault and Basalt Monolith, among many others.

Power level errata is a bad thing for magic. It makes cards ahistorical, weakening them, and disrupting settled expectations of older players who once played with those cards. It's bad policy.

But removing power level errata does mean making all cards work as their text suggests. Zodiac Dragon, like Lotus Vale and Scorched Ruins, was never intended, designed, or ruled to function the way you suggest.

Magic has gone through many rules changes, which I document in that link. But part of preserving the original functionality of cards means that cards should function as they were intended to function, not as they might appear to function today. The format no longer has interrupts, continuous artifacts, "mana sources," or even poly artifacts. Yet, there is a need to make sure that cards that were created under older rules sets function the way they were supposed to function.

If the Rules Manager were to apply a policy of making cards work as the text suggests, it would be a policy disaster for Vintage, with Scorched Ruins and Lotus Vale being absurd. That should never happen. More than that, it would actually result in new power level errata, since cards' functionality would be different than they were itended.

@mourningpalace said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen Dig and Cruise were obviously design mistakes. However, they can not be un-printed, and are here to stay. Do you believe that we have reached a critical mass of brokenness that restrictions can not undo?

Not yet, but that possibility is foreseeable.

It's always been a possibility in Vintage that a critical mass of restricted cards might form the corpus of a dominant deck, and there is no restriction that can rein it in. That once seemed more likely for a kind of Academy deck or even a Mana Drain control deck built around Tinker/Will/Time Vault. But the metagames changed and new printings allowed us to move in the other direction, and unrestrict a bunch of those cards, and the most egregious cards were moved to the periphery of the format.

But, it is now possible to imagine that that scenario has returned. As I said many posts up, it's possible that the Dack-Delve engine is so good that even if all of the components around it were restricted it could still remain the format's premier blue engine. I'm not saying that is a particularly likely scenario - just that it's possible.

And, if it's possible, it means that we should be more circumspect about the path we are on, and not just continue down this tactical route of just restricting cards and hoping it makes a difference, but try to cast out further and think more strategically about our options and what happens if more restrictions don't work. One possibility is to bring back the banned list. Another is to try to put more energy into unrestrictions than restrictions.

So, no, I don't believe we are at the critical mass point yet. But it's possible that we might get there in a year or so.

@ChubbyRain said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

When Mentor is restricted, we will finally be able to observe what happens to the Dack-Delve draw engine. If it falls off significantly, then that will prove that it was Mentor, not Gush, that should have been restricted in April, as most Vintage players knew and wanted in your poll. If it doesn't, then that will also prove that Gush was not the problem, but rather than the inherent power of the Dack-Delve engine is format warping, and Gush had nothing to do with it.

So basically there is no scenario in which you will concede that Gush was problematic...

I think you are misunderstanding what I mean by "the problem." The problem wasn't Gush. It's that the Dack-Delve draw engine is too good, in the latter case quoted above.

So, no, I would not concede that Gush was problematic, because the four years in which Gush was unrestricted before Khans, it was fine.

But just because I wouldn't concede that Gush wasn't the problem doesn't mean I wouldn't have felt it shouldn't be restricted. If Mentor is restricted, and Gush is unrestricted, and Gush performs at an unhealthy level of Top 8s, then I would have supported it's restriction.

Also, see again my argument that cards are not intrinsically good, bad, or problematic. Should we unrestrict Strip Mine? It is legal as a four-of in Old School, so by your logic it should be obvious that Strip Mine isn't the problem. Restrict Wasteland, unrestrict Strip Mine.

I've said this many times, but dominance is not the only justification for restricting a card. Neither the restrictions of Trinisphere nor Flash, nor even Chalice really, can be explained on that basis. Trinisphere was 26% of Top 8s in the two months before it was restricted. Flash was 8.3% of Top 8s in the two months before it was restricted.

There are cards that may never become dominant in the sense of being more than 30% of Top 8s consistently, but nonetheless create noxious or unfun play patterns, and therefore the DCI is certainly within it's right and justified in taking action on those cards, whether I agree with it or not.

Strip Mine is one of the most unfun cards ever printed. Even if it were possible to unrestrict Strip Mine without making a dominant deck (which I don't think is a supportable position), I wouldn't unrestrict Strip Mine because of it's basic game play patterns. That's why I oppose unrestricting Strip Mine in Old School.

I really don't get why Vintage players in particular want to focus on cards in isolation. Gush is one of the most potent enablers in the format and it shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that eventually it would accumulate enough synergies that restricting those other cards fails to bring it into line. While perhaps it would have been nice to restrict Mentor and confirm how Gush continues to drive blue-decks towards the Delve engine, I sincerely doubt a different outcome would have been reached.

I disagree with you. I think it would have been a statistically significantly observable different outcome. I think somewhere between 20-33% of Gush players would have switched to a non-Gush deck if Mentor was restricted instead of Gush.

Whether that's enough of a decline to prevent Gush from also eventually needing restriction, I'm less confident of. But I am certain that restricting Mentor would have brought Gush down by an observable statistical percentage, unlike the restriction of Gush on Mentor, which has had no statistically observable effect.

So, you might be right that Gush would have also needed restriction. But I think you are wrong that it wouldn't have made any difference. I, too, wish that they had restricted Mentor instead so we could really know.

@joshuabrooks said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen
Steve, honest question here, I'm not trying to be a firestarter at all:

Brian kind of hinted at it, but I'm curious what about the Gush restriction has you most bothered? You keep talking about why it shouldn't have been restricted, but rarely the macro consequences of it being restricted.

Is it your perceived injustice of the restriction?
Your affinity for the card (book, success, etc)?
Your time invested in learning the archetype (much like a shops player or storm player)?
Or that you think it is a crucial card for Vintage? (I.e. Pillar)

There've been dozens of unjust restrictions over the years, and you probably have more time, money, and effort invested into Gush than almost anyone, so I'm genuinely curious if it goes beyond that.

I guess what I am trying to say is: from a non-statistical perspective, and a non-biased perspective (which I think is almost impossible as a vintage player), what are the consequences, as you see it, of restricting Gush? I'd enjoy hearing your thoughts on that aspect of the debate.

While many of those things bother me, by far the biggest thing that bothers me is that I don't believe cards should be restricted unless absolutely necessary.

Vintage is a format where you get to play with all of your toys. Whenever the DCI takes away someone's toys, it's a bad day for the format and the community. That should only happen under the most dire and necessary circumstances.

What bothers me the most about the restriction of Gush is my belief that if Mentor had been restricted instead, Gush may not have needed restriction. And this isn't simply a principled utilitarian objection; it's also a consequentialist one: Whenever cards are restricted unnecessarily, it makes it more likely that other cards will be unnecessarily restricted. This is because 1) when you hit the wrong card (as the DCI did when they restricted Chalice instead of Golem), you later have to make more restrictions to solve the problem (as the restriction of Golem later proved). This is also because 2) when you make unnecessary restrictions, you weaken the pillars of the format, and make it more likely that another non-dominant card will become dominant. That's why I say that Gush's restriction makes it more likely that PO will eventually need restriction, when it probably wouldn't if Gush was unrestricted.

@Macdeath said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

Just wanted to point out one thing, the only reason Gush was a fine card for a couple years is that the decks that could best utilize it (doomsday, gush storm) were heavy dogs to Workshops. While RUG delver made great usage of gush, it was playing tarmagoyfs and delvers in a see of Oath of druids and time vault decks.
Gush wasn't dominating because the decks that could play it were poorly positioned it's as simple as that. If the metagame hadn't been so warped around workshops, gush would have been a problem back then as well.

As soon as more credible and resilient threats were associated with Gush, it started occupying more and more of top 8's.
After the printing of young pyromancer, UR delver (popularised by Smmenen) quickly became one of the best blue decks in the format, dominating most blue decks except Oath of druids which was a natural trump to the creature based strategy. Dack fayden and then the delve spells pushed the deck into a dominant position due to enabling a critical mass of card advantage and quality.

Then when monastery mentor was printed the deck gained an oops I win combo finish that was also conveniently almost impossible to answer. Broken cards have always existed but were usually narrow and almost always susceptible to some form of efficient trump card.
Before Mentor, gush decks were somewhat balanced vs the metagame since although they had the better draw spells, they had less efficient win conditions. UR delver was clearly better than other blue decks at drawing cards and executing its game plan consistently, but it was a slow and grindy deck and one small variance slip after maintaining control for multiple turns could easily cost you the game. It was also a huge dog to Oath of druids and Slice and dice, where Mentor the card has virtually 0 weaknesses and wins out of nowhere.
So in essence, Gush mentor was the better control deck, and had the best (one card virtually unanswerable) combo in the format.
I find it hard to believe that Pyromancer Gush would be as good as non gush mentor is today, but the issue with gush is that as soon as another card that synergizes with it a little too much gets printed, gush would have to be restricted again.

Mentor is an outrageous card but so is Gush. Either leads to a consolidation of the blue portion of the metagame into one deck and leaves room only for workshops to thrive, since both cards are inherently weak to taxing effects and mana denial.

While a seemingly persuasive narrative, I don't think it's empirically true. With the exception of the three months that Treasure Cruise was legal, I don't think that Gush's Workshop matchup was fundamentally that much better in the last year than it was in 2013. We have Vintage challenge metagame breakdowns that are sorted by matchups. All of the data we have consistently show that Workshops had and have generally always had a good Gush matchup. So the idea that Gush was fine for four years because it had a bad Workshop matchup , but now needed to be restricted because it doesn't have a bad Workshop matchup is belied by the aggregate empirical evidence. While you can point to new printings like Dack, Workshops also benefited from new printings as well, like Ballista.

As for your view that Gush is just inevitably going to be abused again by some new printing, fine. Then Gush should be restricted when that new printing occurred. But the fact that it existed for four years without incident suggests that it's not inevitable.

@kistrand said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@brianpk80 said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

This isn't a case of facts being in dispute. It is an actual philosophical difference. Your view measures a card's restrictability as a function of the quantity of appearances it makes in a series of tournaments that are recent in nature, relative to other cards doing so or the total pool of played cards. It focuses almost exclusively on a specific metagame at a specific point in time, namely, the present. I assess cards' restrictibility in terms of their effect on game play, raw power level and relative power level vis-a-vis other existing cards, and intangibles like "fun" factor and "outrageous!" factor, the appraisals of which elude verbal capture and recall the Supreme Court's obscenity test from the 1960's, "I know it when I see it."

Being a scientist myself I would say that you Brian have a qualitative approach and Stephen's is quantitative. The former is usually better when seeking deep understanding of a phenomenon and is used with low-n samples whereas the latter seeks to get the big picture, the overarching patterns so-to-speak, but needs a much higher N to work reliably. Just as in science, I think both of your approaches are needed here: we need to see the patterns but also to know why these are. Whether the sample sizes in Vintage are sufficient or not for a robust quantitative analysis is of course hard to tell, but Magic's just a game after all so doesn't need to be that serious and strict all the time.

While I appreciate the kind words, I find this dichotomy a bit reductionist.

Although I've presented quite a bit of empirical statistical evidence, I've hardly ever reduced my position to a pure quantative analysis.

This may have been overlooked in my earlier posts, but I asserted both that 1) Gush was under 15% of top 8s for four years, 2) AND that the metagame was fun, dynamic, and healthy, not just diverse.

So my claims are not purely quantitative: I was making a quantitative and a qualitative claim. Gush was not only a very safe presence in the field in terms of metagame representation, but the decks it powered were also healthy for the metagame with interactive and interesting play patterns.

Brian hasn't pointed to a single instance of a problematic Gush deck from September, 2010 until Khans. And that's because there were none. Instead, he's just offered a few blanket assertions that the the format from late 2008 until roughly 2012 was not healthy. While I presented quantitative evidence that the format was diverse, I also suggested that the format was qualitatively healthy as well. Sure, there were people complaining about Grisel Oath and Dredge, etc. The only thing that I felt was somewhat oppressive in that period was Lodestone Golem, which dominated the Vintage Championship in late 2012, and was fairly obnoxious thereafter. But that's the in which Brian thinks the metagame became better.

In any case, Brian asserts that the metagame became better in late 2012. So, even by his own narrative, Gush was fun for two years, instead of the four that I claim.

@brianpk80 said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

Except that's what I disagree with. And this is not a philosophical disagreement. It's not a disagreement over style, tone or values. This is a factual one:
The reason I so carefully showed you that data was to illustrate this point: For four full years, Gush was fine - it was below 15% of the metagame on average that entire time. It wasn't until Khans that Gush started acting out.

This is a point of distinction we have. I have less faith in data because the many factors that skew something like tournament results render them untrustworthy specifically as a source for gauging an individual card's power or offensiveness. [...]
This isn't a case of facts being in dispute. It is an actual philosophical difference. Your view measures a card's restrictability as a function of the quantity of appearances it makes in a series of tournaments that are recent in nature, relative to other cards doing so or the total pool of played cards. It focuses almost exclusively on a specific metagame at a specific point in time, namely, the present. I assess cards' restrictibility in terms of their effect on game play, raw power level and relative power level vis-a-vis other existing cards, and intangibles like "fun" factor and "outrageous!" factor,

Fair enough.

Permit me to clarify, then, since I think my position was misunderstood. I was claiming that the Vintage format from September, 2010 until Khans was both quantitatively diverse and that the format was qualitatively interesting, interactive, and dynamic in that period as well.

The restriction of Thirst in 2010 did help rein in the excesses of the Tezzeret/Time Vault strategy. And while Bob/Jace decks were the best performing deck for a long while in that period, they were hardly an oppressive menace, and Null Rod strategies were quite prominent as well after that restriction, and helped keep those decks somewhat in check. Rather, they were mostly like Control Slaver, an widely acknowledged "best deck" that only a clear minority felt was ever was truly oppressive or needed restriction.

And by February 2012, with the printing of Grafdigger's Cage, most of the complaints about the format were mooted, as you had a card that singlehandedly weakened Tinker, Will, Oath, and Dredge.

I understand your point, and readily acknowledge that it's possible that a deck or a card can be problematic even if it is not dominant. But Gush was neither dominant nor problematic in that way.

@Smmenen said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

You point towards the quantifiable monetary investment that Workshop players enjoy as a critical factor. But I fail to see why that is more important than the much more valuable time investment that players make with specific archetypes or engines.
My time, as everyone's time, has an economic component or value to it. Those investment, for pretty much everyone, is far more valuable than the far more nominal value of $2-3K in Workhshop as a physical card or form of capital.

Acknowledging the truism that everyone's time is valuable is not inconsistent with opposing a Workshop restriction. In addition to the lost financial investment, over a decade of scholarship, study, and design would be out the window. An entire culture and role identity (dedicated Shop players) has been built around the foundation of 4 Mishra's Workshops as a fundamental presence in the format, for nearly two decades. It's an ad hoc case.

Secondly, it's inconsiderate to blithely write off $4,000 as no big deal. I don't own any Workshops now (the last time I won one, I couldn't get rid of it soon enough, distasteful robot maker that it is) but I'm aware that we live in a declining country where fewer than half of the citizens have $500 to cover an unexpected emergency. I would describe a dismissal of that concern for people who own Workshops as "draconian," but I know Dromoka and Ojutai take issue with the use of that term due to their heritage. 😄

And perhaps most significantly, in my view restricting Mishra's Workshop would be the largest seismic event in B&R history causing lost confidence, disillusionment, and a self-compounding cycle of retirements and less TO support.

I did not mean to suggest that the $2-4K investment in MIshra's Workshop is insignificant or trivial or not worthy of concern, and I agree that my post could be fairly read that way. What I meant was that the time investments that Shop players make with Shops is just as valuable, in many cases, if not more so. And that this extends to other decks and cards.

Rather than dismiss the concern you bring up, I endorse it, but raise you.

I acompletely agree that the effect of restricting Mishra's Workshop on Workshop players would be draconian, but, and here is where I part company with you, I feel the same way about most restrictions. The only exception being those like Treasure Cruise, where players have not really been settled into playing with the card, or cards that are preemptively restricted like Time Vault or Mind's Desire.

I wish that you felt the same way you feel about a possible Workshop restriction as you do about most other card that might arise under consideration for restriction.

But because I feel that every restriction just about is draconian, it also shows why I don't find your argument persuasive in the specific case of Workshop: I think we should treat all restrictions that way, rather than make a special exemption for Mishra's Workshop.

last edited by Smmenen

@gkraigher said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen

"For more than two years, we fought to get this corrected. Although the letter that Rich and I wrote pleading to remove power-level errata ultimately changed policy, Wizards failed to correct the power level errata that was left intact on Time Vault. When I spoke with Richard Garfield at 2008 Nationals, I was able to get the evidence needed to correct this, told Wizards, and the mistake was corrected in short order."

This is the article that years ago sparked my desire to crusade and champion Zodiac Dragons reversion back to its original intent. The card doesn't do today what it was intended to do in design.

Join me Steven. You also have a lot of influence on these things!

Bring Zodiac Dragon to Vintage!

If I recall correctly, Zodiac Dragon is not truly a power level errata. It was released and written under a different set of rules and the text as printed on the card under those rules were meant to have it act the way the errata it was given for updated rules has it act. In other words, the errata on Zodiac Dragon is a functionality errata to keep the card working as intended despite a templating change.

@Smmenen How could a ban list be concidered and not include cards like lotus and recall over things like dig and cruise? Then it just becomes Legacy. I don't see how a ban list is ever possible and still be Vintage.

@mourningpalace said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

@Smmenen How could a ban list be concidered and not include cards like lotus and recall over things like dig and cruise? Then it just becomes Legacy. I don't see how a ban list is ever possible and still be Vintage.

I'm not saying we should go that route, but if that "critical mass" possibility is realized as an actual fact, and restriction was no longer able to make a difference, it's an option that should be considered.

Three cards have been banned in this format before for power level reasons: Time Vault, Mind Twist, and Channel. Those cards were banned, and not Lotus and Ancestral. So it's not unprecedented. You wouldn't ban a card just because it's good, like Lotus. You would only ban a card, as a last resort, if it was a problem, as Dig Through Time and Treasure Cruise might prove to be, over time.

Again, I'm not advocating this position. I'm just saying that, if the critical mass possibility is realized, every option should be considered.

@Smmenen I agree. I would propose an even different route that has been talked about before. Banning cards from being in the same deck together. Nothing outright banned, but card x and card y can't be in the same deck together.
Hope it never gets to that point, but would be something to concider.

Concerning workshop, 15 years ago i could have agreed that workshop should not be treated differently that any other card. But nowadays, some things make it quite different IMHO. Money is a thing but i am talking about something different here. To make it short :

  • I asked a very simple question : "what is the point to build a 40+ artifact deck to get a synergy with a restricted card ?" My answer is that it would be a deck building error and i read nowhere any different answer to that question. Under that asumption, restricting workshop would mean that shop archetype would not exist any more a few months after the restriction.

  • There are many high level vintage players posting here in TMD but one should not forget that most vintage players nowadays are just casual players that play for the sheer pleasure of it. Most of them are always playing the same archetype even if they may change their deck within their archetype. Why so ?

  • Because, it requires some time to master a deck (or an archetype) so when you don't play every week or so it just take longer. Because, in several places (such as Europe) almost all tournaments are sanctionned and they may not own (or afford) the cards required to try something different. Because, and it is my main point, each archetype is somehow a different "philosophy" about MTG and they don't feel like playing something different.

  • Next is obvious, some people would just be pissed off (for good or bad reasons, it is not important) and would leave vintage to other formats (or even not play any more). Every one here know that any people that is selling its vintage cards nowadays is some one that won't ever be able to play any sanctionned tornament any more, and he won"t get replaced by a new player for the same reason. As an exemple, vintage format is (nearly) dead in France where it is a big victory when a local tournament with more than 4 people can happen ... please don't kill it in many other countries.

I am not doomsaying but trying to show what is at stake if workshop becomes restricted. So if that path is to be followed, the benefits should overcome the risk. I read many interesting stuff here in that thread and thanks people for their very interesting contributions but i still fail to see how paper vintage as a living format could be better with workshop restricted.

So to sum up, workshop should be treated differently than card such as dig or so. I would say the same (and for the same reasons) if we were talking about bazaar or FoW, or any emblematic vintage card.

last edited by albarkhane

@MSolymossy said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

The deck is completely fine and still competitive without 4 workshops.

Not to drag us too far off topic (though this thread is probably well past that point anyway), but is that just your guess or have you tested it? I've never tried playing Shops with 1 Workshop and, say, 3 City of Traitors, but my intuition tells me it'd be garbage: Legacy MUD is much, much worse than Vintage Shops, which I've always mostly attributed to the lack of Mishra's Workshop. Maybe I'm wrong and the Moxen + Academy are enough to keep it good, so I'd be interested to hear evidence that Shops isn't terrible without a playset of its namesake card.

It's amazing to me how many people consistently test hypothetical Vintage formats with regularity and the thoroughness to speak so absolutely.

I've seen it in many threads here, so this isn't directed at anyone. Do people actually test these theories, or just base them on intuition or the 1999 (etc) metagame? Because if it's intuition, people have historically over-valued their prognostative abilities in this.

last edited by joshuabrooks

Lets look at it this way - if shops has a turn 1 workshop what are they most likely playing?
Phyrexian Revoker - 2CC
Arcbound Ravager - 2CC
Sphere of resistance - 2CC
Thorn of Amethyst - 2 CC
Walking Ballista @1 - 2CC
Trinisphere - 3CC

That's 21 cards out of roughly 35 non-mana slots. 20 of those 21 cards can still be played with 2 mana instead of 3 mana. That 21st card, trinisphere, just needs a lotus, mox, sol ring or mana crypt and it can still be played turn 1.

So what exactly is it about the opening 2-3 turns of shops that would be hurt by having to rely on a sol land instead of a workshop more consistently?

@Khahan The issue isn't that tehy're dropping 1 thing - it's games like Glacking's where the go Workshop + Mox into Cheif + sphere, into turn 2 Sphere + waste into turn 3 sphere. OR games where they have multiple workshops and cast a bunch of threats turn 2 after making your turn 1 so you can only play 0 mana things due to a sphere.

@Khahan said in Turbo Xerox and Monastery Mentor:

Lets look at it this way - if shops has a turn 1 workshop what are they most likely playing?
Phyrexian Revoker - 2CC
Arcbound Ravager - 2CC
Sphere of resistance - 2CC
Thorn of Amethyst - 2 CC
Walking Ballista @1 - 2CC
Trinisphere - 3CC

That's 21 cards out of roughly 35 non-mana slots. 20 of those 21 cards can still be played with 2 mana instead of 3 mana. That 21st card, trinisphere, just needs a lotus, mox, sol ring or mana crypt and it can still be played turn 1.

So what exactly is it about the opening 2-3 turns of shops that would be hurt by having to rely on a sol land instead of a workshop more consistently?

Discounting the possible turn 2 plays, having 8 lands that makes these openings possible instead of 5 is a big deal, no?

last edited by Griselbrother
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