February 12, 2018 Banned and Restricted Announcement

Announcement Link

No changes to Vintage.

Next B&R Announcement: April 16, 2018

A relevant Vintage change would be the price spike on JTMS i assume.

It's a price us Vintage players have seen before. And he's due for a reprint in A25.

I was really hoping for un restrictions though. Gitaxian Probe was wrongfully banned, they should correct that mistake.

Awful. Can't believe they won't cut the phyrexian cancer that is Misstep out of Vintage.

Restricting Misstep would make it harder to unrestrict other cards first. I'd rather they unrestrict Windfall and/or Fastbond first.

It's also hard to make the case that Misstep is a problem with the best two decks in the format are Oath and Workshop.

last edited by Smmenen

@smmenen lots of 1 mana spells answer those archetypes, but every blue deck is starting construction at like 30 cards now. Nobody is incented to play those answers without also burning 4 spots on their own Missteps, and soon you have no deck left to build. Missteps impact is felt far more on the drawing board, the cards that never even get tried because of its effect. The miserable play pattern is just the cherry on the shit sundae.

@nedleeds I used to think that Misstep was a side effect of people playing a bunch of cantrips and discard spells. I started play MTGO and I started building decks without Misstep and you are correct that you will get impacted by the card in a big way.

The best decks do not care about this card. So, I tried to change the way I played blue decks by either playing less 1 drops or just expecting the card and playing a ton of one drops.

I like Vintage and I think we need more broken cards not less.

This post is deleted!

@aelien Wow, just noticed that. What's the reason behind it?

@dr-j Jace was unbanned in Modern, as indicated by the first sentence in the linked announcement.

@thecravenone I didn't click the link because it had no indication of interesting me. But thanks anyways.

[edited: removed reference to deleted post - BrassMan]

Probe is one of those cards, much like Misstep, Trinisphere maybe even Chalice that made for a miserable, repetitive play pattern. It's power level (like Chalice / 3ball) waned a little as the game progressed but free Storm, Delve, information for no card or mana investment was ridiculous.

That being said Probe didn't keep any other cards from ever being considered for inclusion in a given deck construction exercise. It was just a miserable card. Misstep is a miserable play pattern, eats up deck construction space because it's inherently an incestuous card (when nobody was playing it ... it stayed dormant, but once it's numbers ramp then everyone has to play it or play no 1's).

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Fucking card is just the worst.

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last edited by Brass Man

I 100% agree. Misstep needs to go. I'd really like to see decks begin to be able to run DRS with more impunity. I'd also like to see DPS curb-stomp other pyromancer lists because it can actually run Duress/Thoughtseize to greater effect again.

I agree with this as well, Misstep should go. Blue decks will always homogenize to the "best" draw and counter packages, but there are decks that folks shy away from on scale because of misstep blowouts. Thoughtseize/duress, DRS, Noble Heirarch, Exploration, enlightened tutor ect...are all cards with powerful effects that are shied away from because of misstep. I make no claim that misstep is holding back multiple archetypes, but I do believe it is stifling creativity on the fringes of the format.

If misstep was restricted I would play crop rotations for academy. That would be fun.

Misstep is a card I've gone back and forth on. I really don't know where I stand.

On the one hand ...

I've never felt like I've heard a compelling gameplay argument against Misstep. I hear people say Misstep is suppressing cards all the time that I really can't wrap my head around. There really aren't many one-cost spells that were performing well in vintage right before Misstep was printed, and stopped being good afterwards. I think there's a chance Spell Pierce qualifies, but that's not a card I hear people upset about not being able to run.

In contrast I can think of lots of one drop spells that are better now than they used to be (Swords to Plowshares, Lightning Bolt), some that are about the same (Pyroblast), and a tons of great cards that were printed after Mental Misstep and have always been vintage playable (Grafdigger's Cage, Gitaxian Probe, Delver of Secrets. Fragmentize, Deathrite Shaman).

However, the cards I hear people mention over and over again, like Goblin Welder and Crop Rotation and Entomb were fully legal and objectively bad (in terms of tournament results) before Misstep was printed. This is not to say that Misstep isn't good against those cards - this is to say ... If you these cards weren't good in 2011, why is "they're bad in 2018" a compelling argument now? What's stopping people from playing them?

Some one-drop-centric analysis feels completely backwards to me. I think one-drop tutors are slightly BETTER against Mental Misstep than they were against Mana Drain - getting your tutor target countered is a blowout, getting your Vampiric Tutor Misstepped is a 1 for 1 with a one-mana tempo loss at worst. Largely I think Storm Combo is a better deck in a field of Missteps than it was before. Storm Combo decks are loaded with one-drops but they also have the ability to adapt to specialized counters more cheaply than control decks can afford to swap them out. The amount of effort a Storm combo deck has to go through to beat a 2010-era control deck with Duress and Mana Drain is pretty high compared to today. Have you ever cast a Defense Grid against a deck running 4 Mental Misstep, 3 Flusterstorm, 3 Pyroblast? That's an easy button the deck has today that it never had back in 2011.

Anecdotally, one drops are better in vintage now than they were in 2011. I didn't do any in-depth analysis (which would be incredibly hard if not impossible to do), but picking random lists from vintage history and random lists from vintage today, there's just more one drops being played now. This isn't evidence that Misstep makes one drops better, but it's evidence that it's not making them so much worse that deckbuilding is distorted.

I particularly like what Mental Misstep has done to blue mirrors in regards to the interplay around Ancestral Recall. The presence of Misstep has turned tons of lucky random blowout games into decision-intense interplay... Does she have it? Can I risk playing Recall immediately? Can I risk NOT playing Recall immediately? Should I bait with Preordain? If I bait with Preordain is she the kind of player that will always burn a Misstep on any one drop, or is she trapping me? Should I wait until I have protection? How long can I wait until my opponent draws more protection than me .... Wait, is that a Preordain on the stack for my opponent? Does she have Ancestral, too? or is she digging for lands? Back in 2010 this game was "Island pass, Ancestral on upkeep. GG?"

Now I don't for a second think that my metagame predictivity is infallible, but it's really hard for me to think of a scenario where Misstep gets restricted and the desired outcomes happen. I don't see how it could make Shops decks worse or Aggro decks better (If you're not running Misstep in your aggro decks, why not? You care about opposing one drops more than your opponent does, and the tempo swing is more important for you). I don't see Crop Rotation taking Academy from being a 30% deck to being a 60% deck ... Maybe it takes it from 30% to 35% ... but was 32.5% really your cutoff?

On the other hand ...

Nothing I said above really matters. Game design isn't about metagame balance and it's not objective. I can think of ways in which restricted Misstep would make the game less enjoyable for me personally, but not much worse. And while I don't think 1 Misstep would have the effect people are looking for, I could be wrong, and I don't think the outcome would be terrible either way.

The fact is some people just aren't having fun right now. I don't really know how many people, or which people, but it's obviously more than a handful.

And whether or not they're right about what would happen post-Misstep, people not having fun is a problem. If enough people end up in that camp, something needs to be done. I don't know whether a Misstep restriction is the right thing to be done (I would worry for the format if we tried to restrict cards until Crop Rotation was good), but something would need to change, and I don't know that I have any other idea that would actually solve the problem of those players not having fun.

last edited by Brass Man

Not only are decks with Mental Misstep neither homogenous nor dominant, they are nowhere close to being homogenous or dominant.

Moxen, Workshop, and Bazaar will always prevent Misstep from being anywhere near as oppressive it was in other formats.

Zero reason to consider restriction.

@wappla said in February 12, 2018 Banned and Restricted Announcement:

Not only are decks with Mental Misstep neither homogenous nor dominant, they are nowhere close to being homogenous or dominant.

Moxen, Workshop, and Bazaar will always prevent Misstep from being anywhere near as oppressive it was in other formats.

Zero reason to consider restriction.

Well said!
MTG Top 8 has dredge at 10% of the format. Dredge isn't as budget as it used to be but its about as affordable as a top tier Legacy deck. I really like Vintage right now.

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