How much shake up is too much

So I think it is fair to say that War of the Spark is shaping up to have at least the potential to affect vintage in a way very few sets have in the past. There are a number of cards that, while still untested, have huge potential to shake up the fundamentals of the format, including:

Ashiok, Dream Render
Karn, the Great Creator
Jace, Wielder of Mysteries
Bolas's Citadel
Teferi, Time Raveler
Dovin, Hand of Control
Saheeli, Sublime Artificer

Some of these cards have very profound effects that attack core ways the format functions, including completely turning off counter magic, Stoping tutoring, etc. Some of these effects are not new, but in many cases being on a walker that can be windmilled out and has other utility has made them far more viable than they would have been otherwise.

Which leads me to the question, how much is too much? Magic is a living game and every release has the potential to change the game, but how much is too much at once? I'm trying to imagine what the format looks like with people having to pair back fetch land use or not rely on counterspells and it truly looks very different.

The London Mulligan really shakes things up already. The LM favors explosive draws. Lavinia and Shops both make you want to run more lands. Deckbuilding is really damned dichotomous right now.

So, if we're going to have big changes, now is the time.

The Walkers will change the format to some degree, but I highly doubt it does anything more than some of the powerful blocks, like Khans and Zendikar. Vintage will continue to chug along.

As excited as I am for this set, I don't think Vintage will change too much. I have a hard time believing the fundamental building blocks of Vintage will disappear due to these new printings. I think it's more likely that one of 3 things will happen.

  1. New card slots into an existing archetype
  2. New card creates a new archetype that's fringe playable
  3. New card is messed around with for a few weeks, then fades away

I think as high as the power level of this set has been, Khans probably will have changed Vintage on a fundamental level more than the upcoming set will. As someone said, the london mulligan rule has the potential to change things more!

Vintage has been a haven for old fuddy-duddies who like the comfort of a format that doesn't change much. However, enthusiasm for T1 in my neck of the woods seems to have dwindled considerably, so anything that might stir up interest I view as a good thing.

This spring is one of the most interesting times in Magic's long hstory.

We have War of the Spark, with so many planeswalker (including a slightly different design approach) cards that ask a lot of questions.

We have the London mulligan rule, which if adopted will alter the way the game is played and shift how we evaluate certain cards.

We have the upcoming Modern Horizons set, which has the potiential to print new cards that carry effects that will easily find a home in Vintage.

It is a fascinating time to be a magic player.

I have been a bit bored with Vintage and this set is just what the format needs right now. There are just so many possibilities. I am very excited to start messing around with deck building and just try new stuff.

So answering the op question: there isn't such a thing as too much shake up.

Also this set does very little for Vintage IMO. Fetches, CotV, Mentor and Delve spells were way more impactful. The most important cards are Citadel, Teferi and Karn so far and none of them are format-defining-broken. Maybe Citadel if anyone figures out the right list for it. I don't think Teferi will be important like Dack Fayden.

The London Mulligan will probably shake up the format much more than this set.

last edited by fsecco

How much shake up is too much

$200 worth. If I have to spend more than $200 because a new set comes out, I'll be vaguely annoyed before doing it anyway.

@thecravenone I can't remember a time where this happened though. Maybe when JVP was released but he wasn't an immediate 4-of anywhere anyway.

@hrishi I think there are some cards that will have a longterm impact on Vintage. Paradoxical Outcome took a year to develop into a real deck. Survival took a while after Hollow One was released as well. Deck creation is a very time consuming exercise in Vintage and there are very good card to seed that creation, it just may take a year or 2.

@moorebrother1 Absolutely, and I really hope archetypes emerge which are built around these new cards. I definitely think Bolas' Citadel is one such card, and is definitely the one I want to build an archetype around when it gets released. I more just mean I don't think this set will shake up Vintage too much. We'll hopefully get a few new archetypes and a few new toys in existing ones.

@aelien I don't even see where is the shake up. Narset and Karn? This has happened before with other cards that eventually got restricted (or not). Cards from Modern Horizons? Meh.

This was meant as a comment at how the MH1 seems to have immense impact on the format while the dust from WAR hasn't really settled yet.

@aelien An my point is what exactly do you call shake up? Narset and Karn sure did shake everything up, which was pretty cool. None of the other cards on the OP actually saw a bunch of play to a point we can say they shook things up.

But what do you honestly expect will "shake up the format" from MH1? Shenanigans, Force of Vigor and Collector Ouphe are all artifact hate cards that will sure see play, but the most they'll do is make green more prominent in the format, which is cool. Everything else seems cool, and even playable, but not too prone to change anything drastically. Maybe we'll see the new Echo of Eons be the new Gaea's Blessing in Oath, which is awesome. What more?

last edited by fsecco

@aelien I'm not even sure the dust from Ravnica Allegiance has settled yet, honestly. At minimum I feel like Cindervines/Jund and that version of Kaya have more exploratory juice in them--they had just started putting up results when WAR came out and dumped a bunch of new stuff into the format. And with WAR, there's so much potentially-relevant stuff that there hasn't been anywhere near enough bandwidth to put it all through the paces. People have latched onto the backbreaking stuff (Narset and Karn) and the one powerful combo piece (Citadel) to a lesser extent, and there are probably a dozen cards that could turn out to be real players that haven't really been explored yet. And they might not be for a while because Horizons is also going to give us a bunch more stuff.

It takes a long time for dust to settle in Vintage.

That said, I don't think any amount of "shake up" is inherently bad. When Wizards prints interactive cards that create new decks, that's great for the format. When Wizards prints dominant cards that entrench established archetypes and are un-interactive, that's bad for the format. Both can be considered a "shake up". Right now, I feel like Karn and Narset are analagous to reprinting Lodestone Golem (or whatever broken, restricted colorless card) and Dig Through Time, in terms of a shake up. In the same set. Which can be pretty miserable to play.

Modern Horizons looks much more positive in that the spoiled cards, don't inherently slot into the Karn - Narset decks (though 8-Force Dredge isn't something I look forward to). But most are going to be role players and not really format defining cards. I still think the format will be defined by Karn - Narset - Bazaar.

A complete format shake up is completely reasonable. Vintage players rest on their laurels assuming that they won't have to adapt to new printings at the same pace as Standard players. What MODO taught a lot of local end bosses (for a lack of a better term) is that they need to adapt to survive, and not just rest on their same 75 week in and week out.

@Protoaddict, your list of cards is hardly a "shake up". They are blue, black and brown, the same three colors that have defined Vintage for its entire history. They are the same basic effects repackaged, much in the same way most of the War of the Spark planeswalkers are personal Howling Mines repackaged in various colors and sizes.

I think Vintage could benefit from a shake up that something like Standard experiences, where red oscillates from Tier 1 and Tier 3, color combinations go from unsupported to supported and back, and styles of hate and countermeasures go from existing to not. I'd like to see a Vintage where blue is green and black is red, where new printings cause an entire format upheaval but the format retains a balance. What if the two Spirit Guides outclassed brown's ability to generate mana? What if white was Tier 1 and the format respected that? There are so many unimaginable ways a shake up could really play out.

TL:DR - War of the Spark didn't shake up the format and an actual shake up would be cool as long as the resulting metagame was balanced.

last edited by Shopsaholic

@shopsaholic said in How much shake up is too much:

TL:DR - War of the Spark didn't shake up the format and an actual shake up would be cool as long as the resulting metagame was balanced.

Top 8 stats for decks with fow without bazaar 3 challenges before WAR

April 28: 6/8
April 21: 4/8
April 14: 6/8

Top 8 stats for decks with fow without bazaar the 3 last MTGO challenges (after WAR, excluding the one that was immediately after release)

May 12: 2/8
May 19: 2/8
May 26: 2/8

Out of those 6 decks, 5 played narset...
There could be tons of reasons for this, people want to try new things etc. But it seems strange to argue that WAR didn't shake up the format...

last edited by JosefK
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