@gremlin-lord Maybe my bad writing is confusing. I learned that Leovold, hurts Oath more than I could have imagined. This is not a complaint piece, but for us old players more a view point.
The health of Vintage is heavily reliant on keeping players engaged and attracting new players. MTGO helps attract new players in some respect but it fails on other levels - like playing in large paper events.
This is not meant to be a complaint but more like lessons I learned based on advice I received from players on this site.
@gremlin-lord I keep hearing this argument and I said in my piece and have continued to say that there is value in playing MTGO for some people.
I have played against people who play a lot of MTGO and people who are not on MTGO at all and I cannot see a significant difference in their play.
What I can tell you, when playing in a non-proxy event - you need cards.
I have a lot of cards and I encourage players to try vintage by showing them decks and how they work.
The 400 or so players that played at Champs mostly showed up to have fun not to be world champion.
@moorebrother1 I appreciate that you're talking from personal experience, and I absolutely agree that MTGO is not worth it for everyone, but I really think you're underselling it in some cases.
Playing MTGO will make your understanding of the rules about MTG better but it will not make you a better paper player.
• There are things about the rules that I did not know, and MTGO exploits these. Leovold is beast against Oath on MTGO.
Exploiting the rules is a funny way to say "understanding the rules." Leovold is a beast against Oath in paper, before you didn't know that, and now you do. How is that not MTGO making you a better paper player?
The cost of buying into MTGO vs buying into paper is not worth it if you plan on staying in the game for any pro-longed period of time.
I think it's completely fair to want to stay out of having a digital collection and buy paper cards instead. That's completely subjective and a lot of people just prefer it. I don't think it's fair to have a conversation about the value proposition of digital cards without mentioning that most people can't afford $20k for vintage deck. There's something off about you saying you didn't want to spend $5 on a Hurkyl's Recall on magic online while also saying you prefer paper cards.
There is a small group of players that dominate MTGO. We see their names on mtgotop8.com and rarely see paper players names because most of the data from paper events is not collected in a reliable way.
The current vintage champion is Andy Markiton, who was the best performing vintage player on MTGO for months before he owned a paper vintage deck. Three of the top performing MTGO players are Andy, Brian Kelly, and Rich Shay, who are well known for their performances in paper events. Anecdotally my friend Akash Naidu was primarily a non-vintage player, started playing vintage on MTGO because it was easy to get games in, and now pretty consistently top 8s any large paper vintage events he attends. There is a strong correlation between good MTGO finishes and good paper finishes. That doesn't mean that playing online is guaranteed to make someone a better player, but it makes some of the best players better.
There's a lot of reasons to dislike MTGO, and if your core point is that you learn faster against human opponents, I think that's absolutely correct ... but I don't think there's a good argument that MTGO doesn't regularly produce stronger players.
finally ... as an aside
• The random shuffle on MTGO is vastly different from a paper shuffle where players aim for random distribution of cards.
Don't says stuff like this. This is cheating. I know you didn't mean it that way, but it is. If a player is aiming for anything other than randomization while they're shuffling their cards, that player is cheating. If you're getting dramatically different draws with your paper decks than the same deck on MTGO, consider trying a new shuffling technique.
@moorebrother1 You said MTGO helps attract new players in some respect but it fails on other levels - like playing in large paper events but honestly Brass Man does a heck of a lot better explaining basically everything including my bit before about shuffling.
Honestly, I'm feeling a little ganged up on here. I just spent $1500 trying to play online when I already own all of the cards.
My experiences on MTGO have been a mixed bag. I see on this site that people use data and anecdotes from MTGO all of the time.
I have a high level of respect for people who play at Championship levels, I'm trying to get to that level. My observations were meant to highlight big differences from playing paper to playing MTGO.
I used language not to judge or demonize and I put this into context of a "In My Opinion" view.
@moorebrother1 That's totally fair for you to say. I think some players (like myself) who have played a lot of MTGO can get defensive about this subject.
I think some of the points you brought up might be too-broad generalizations that won't apply to most people ... but I also think there are plenty of completely valid arguments against playing online, and I don't think any less of players who decide it isn't for them - it's not always for me, either.
The Game isn't even released and i am already waiting for Mtg: Arena to feature Vintage. To be honest the game flow is pretty fluent and the full control mode seems like it can handle Vintage play patterns and complexities, as someone who still refuses to buy into mtgo, Vintage on this new platform might just loosen my wallet.
Edit: Yes i know its far from finished, there are many features missing like a play history (did he scry on top with that preordain 2 spells ago?) Also Vintage, and other true eternal formats, will probably be the last thing added into that client, not being able to trade might also make it hard to the needed cards, though the wildcard system might handle this well. I just want to say, that if wizards does this correctly, the client has potential.
I was thinking about playing in the league and I noticed that the number of players currently in the league was down to 42 from over 100 about a month ago. I also just checked the results from this weekend https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/mtgo-standings/vintage-challenge-2018-04-22 and there were only 32 players.
Is there a downturn in MTGO competitive play or is this just a timing issue?
I prefer paper events over MTGO and I don't play in any of Challenges myself, I will occasionally play in a league but rarely.
@moorebrother1 It's a timing issue. Each league is timed up with new set releases, of which Dominaria was just released. When you go to the league page, make sure you keep track of the "League Ends" date, as that will show you when the fewest # of players will be, and the following day would begin the new league.
I don't think you are wrong at all - MTGO is just a completely different animal. Some people like both, some prefer one over the other. Both certainly have their list of merits and flaws ... you just have to decide for yourself if you think MTGO is worth it for you.