JANUARY 9, 2017 BANNED AND RESTRICTED ANNOUNCEMENT POLL

Let's not get tripped up on semantics. I didn't say the information had no value - just that it was overvalued.

Probe is just as good as thinning a deck as Street Wraith

Re-read my quote: "For strictly cycling/thinning purposes, Street Wraith is superior, and it doesn't see play."

I didn't say that Street Wraith is a better card than Probe. It clearly isn't. Just that Street Wraith is better for strictly thinning purposes, as it can't be countered/missteped, etc. If all you were trying to do was thin your deck, for whatever reason, and you didn't care at all about what your opponent was playing or hand in hand or seek to generate storm or tokens, etc then Street Wraith would be just as good. Obviously, those things matter or else Probe wouldn't see so much play.

I think Preordain is clearly a superior card to Gitaxian Probe, in terms of restriction consideration...

@ChubbyRain When your opponent always knows your resistance level... But walks right into this guy:

alt text

last edited by vaughnbros

@Smmenen Gitaxian Probe is really not comparable to Street Wraith, or Preordain to do this shows a massive misunderstanding of why the card sees so much play and why its so good. Yes, it cycles and for 0 mana, but that is pretty much where the comparisons ends.

Telepathy costs U, and -1 card. Yet in my early days of playing magic, it was a damn good card. The perfect knowledge for a beginner is INSANE. Yes, I understand your point that as you get more experience perfect knowledge becomes less important, but it is still valuable. With a lot of experience, you can make a good estimation of what's in your opponents hand, maybe even up to 90% or so, but that's still less than 100%. The cost of Gitaxian probe to fill in that extra 10%? Just 2 life. No cards, no mana. When you talk about cards like Cabal Therapy that information becomes even more valuable. As a diehard dredge player, I feel I can blind name game changing cards something around 50+%, I'd consider that to be pretty good. But if they don't have any game changing cards in their hand, its 0%. With probe though? That's 100%. Every time. You get a similar improvement to every tutor, every Preordain/ponder/brainstorm, every fetchland that you use after you probe. You can go from some % less than 100, to 100% that is the right play. I don't care how good you are, you are not always going to 100% make the right play based on your opponents hand without actually knowing your opponents hand! This information is the entire reason the card is good. Neither Street Wraith, nor preodain do that.

In addition:
Compared to Street Wraith:
Its also a blue card, which means the card can be pitched to Force of Will. Its also an instant/sorcery meaning that you can flash it back on a resolved Yawg Will, or with a Jace/Snapcaster, and that it also triggers your Mentor and adds to your storm. Unlike Street Wraith, its hit by spheres, it can be countered and can't be eaten by an Ichorid.

Compared to Preordain:
It costs 0 mana. Meaning you can play it turn 1 before you cast any of your other spells, and even before you choose to play your land. Meaning you can play it in a non-blue deck altogether. Meaning that it has 0 tempo less. Unlike Preodain, it doesn't really improve the quality of your draws.

This all said, restricting the card is absurd. Its a good card, even a great card, but it does almost nothing in the scheme of balancing decks. Any deck without Thorn effects can, and honestly probably should play it if they can find room in their deck.

last edited by vaughnbros

@desolutionist You played in like 2006 and 2007; I broke out in 2008. And you haven't been relevant since, while my name is still there.

@Soly The response was to @ribby, which is why I quoted his "braindead" remark. I could have used a direct quote in my response, but I shouldn't have to. If you were reading his previous responses, and I gather that you had, you should be able to infer that my response was not towards you.

I understand that you're passionate about the topic, but shoot-from-the-hip responses aren't helpful.

EDIT: And I will add for the record, that I highly respect many of the people on this site, including @Soly , @Smmenen, and many others. I've learned a lot about the format by watching, listening, and reading what all of you have contributed over the years.

last edited by Horologium

@ApolloGod misunderstanding; apologies.

@ChubbyRain I wasn't trying to say that only bad players benefit; clearly great players can benefit from knowing what is in your opponents hand, too. Sorry if that was not clear. The overall point I was trying to make is that the card (Probe) rewards players for simply casting the spell. The worst case scenario for the card is that they Misstep it and that's one less Misstep you'll have to fight through the rest of the game.

@ribby Sorry my quoting abilities are misfiring this evening. I was intending to respond to a post in which you were quoted, and I misinterpreted the original response as the quoted response.

I need to take some time to slow down my thoughts I suppose.

Apologies to @Soly, @ribby, and @ whomever else I've quoted improperly.

last edited by Horologium

I said earlier: Probe in Modern is different than Probe in Vintage.

Dissect this a bit. Probe in Modern is played in Infect, Death's Shadow Zoo, etc. These are combat-based, weirdly interactive decks... that are nevertheless really not super-interesting or fun to play 100 times in a row. They have "lots" of lines of play but in the end they are just variations of the same theme - stick a creature that's a lot bigger than it should be and try to avoid combat.

Additionally, it's actually kind of perverse that Probe's -2 life is an advantage in Zoo and a total non-factor against Infect.

Probe in Vintage has some pretty crappy applications in the fringe DPS deck and the hopefully-soon-to-be-fringe Outcome decks... but that's a small slice of what it is. In the main, it has some pretty interesting implications in the grindier Gush decks in terms of fractionally modifying their curves, being more than one thing (not just with the tokens... but with applications like Cabal Therapy) and informing play sequencing. It's fun. And the life loss is starting to matter as things unfold with Delver and Eldrazi etc., so "opportunity cost doesn't matter" isn't necessarily true?

last edited by ribby

I will admit that there is something annoying about Gush Mentor decks (not to mention PO Mentor decks). But I can't pinpoint whether it is about any one spell. It just seems like it is the biggest part of the meta and that's a core component of my annoyance.

95% of my Vintage play has been done with Oath, so to a certain extent that certainly impacts my opinion. And 95% of my Vintage play has been on MTGO, which has a heavy presence of both Mentor decks and Paradoxical Outcome decks (although, the fever seems to have broken on that card, I'm seeing it less).

I could see Gitaxian Probe being restricted based on arguments about play experience (like Shahrazad), but I wouldn't really expect Wizards to do that.

It kinds of feels like Misstep is not enough to discourage endless blue 1 CMC spells in the way that unrestricted Chalice forced people to diversify.

@enderfall

It wasn't specifically directed at you (more at Steve), but this misconception that Gitaxian Probe favors inexperienced players is commonly repeated and ignores the ubiquity of Probe's play by players of various experience levels across formats.

Again, I'm not advocating for restriction.

@vaughnbros said in JANUARY 9, 2017 BANNED AND RESTRICTED ANNOUNCEMENT POLL:

@Smmenen Gitaxian Probe is really not comparable to Street Wraith, or Preordain to do this shows a massive misunderstanding of why the card sees so much play and why its so good. Yes, it cycles and for 0 mana, but that is pretty much where the comparisons ends.

That has absolutely nothing to do with what I was saying.

I realize you want to stand on a pedestal and explicate your views on Gitaxian Probe, which is great, but you are swinging at a straw man.

Re-read what I said:

I didn't say that Street Wraith is a better card than Probe. It clearly isn't. Just that Street Wraith is better for strictly thinning purposes, as it can't be countered/missteped, etc. If all you were trying to do was thin your deck, for whatever reason, and you didn't care at all about what your opponent was playing or hand in hand or seek to generate storm or tokens, etc then Street Wraith would be just as good. Obviously, those things matter or else Probe wouldn't see so much play.

In other words, I specifically listed out the things that Probe does that Street Wraith doesn't:

  • It generates storm
  • It triggers token generators
  • It reveals your opponent's hand
    *and, if you want, it's blue.

I also said: Street Wraith doesn't see any play, and Probe sees lots.

Conclusion: the reason Probe sees play is not primarily because of it's cycling or thinning ability. That was the whole point of my post.

I'm sorry you got hung up on the fact that I mentioned Probe and Street Wraith the same sentence, but I didn't do so for the purpose you seem to think I did.

I think Preordain is a much better card in terms of shaping the structure of the Vintage format. Preordain can selection 1 of 3 cards for one mana. Probe is 1 card for 0 mana.

There is a legitimate argument for restricting Preordain, but not, I think, for Probe.

last edited by Smmenen

@Smmenen said in JANUARY 9, 2017 BANNED AND RESTRICTED ANNOUNCEMENT POLL:

@vaughnbros said in JANUARY 9, 2017 BANNED AND RESTRICTED ANNOUNCEMENT POLL:

@Smmenen Gitaxian Probe is really not comparable to Street Wraith, or Preordain to do this shows a massive misunderstanding of why the card sees so much play and why its so good. Yes, it cycles and for 0 mana, but that is pretty much where the comparisons ends.

That has absolutely nothing to do with what I was saying.

I think Preordain is a much better card in terms of shaping the structure of the Vintage format. Preordain can selection 1 of 3 cards for one mana.

Quoting not working right, but you again are comparing Preordain to Gitaxian Probe. But no, I am attacking a strawman.

last edited by vaughnbros

@Smmenen Sure, if you isolate the question purely to deck-thinning then these cards are equally good at that one task... but practically speaking. Probe is blue, and a spell that synergizes with token makers, and can be cast from the yard with Snapcaster or Baby, Jace... so the one is, practically speaking, far far better than the other. Isolating the issue to deck-thinning, before leading into stating that Street Wraith doesn't see play... well, let's not get caught up in semantics.

Probe is pretty clearly a tremendous card, synergizing directly and indirectly with almost every card in the standard issue Gush/Mentor deck.

The entire point of your post was that Gitaxian Probe is much better than Street Wraith, which is something I admitted many, many posts up.

Then, you began spouting off the differences between Probe and Street Wraith, repeating text I already made:

You said:

In addition:
Compared to Street Wraith:
Its also a blue card, which means the card can be pitched to Force of Will. Its also an instant/sorcery meaning that you can flash it back on a resolved Yawg Will, or with a Jace/Snapcaster, and that it also triggers your Mentor and adds to your storm. Unlike Street Wraith, its hit by spheres, it can be countered and can't be eaten by an Ichorid.

But I already said:

If all you were trying to do was thin your deck, for whatever reason, and you didn't care at all about what your opponent was playing or hand in hand or seek to generate storm or tokens, etc then Street Wraith would be just as good.

In other words, I already made every point you made. Street Wraith sees no play, but Probe is heavily played. That's not in dispute.

@Smmenen Preordain =/= Probe. Different cards. Different roles. Re-read my post if you need to.

last edited by vaughnbros

@Smmenen My mistake then. I see I misinterpreted you to associate them and say that Probe was only a little better than a card that sees no play. Also, you win the prize for quickest ever reply.

I'm a little frustrated seeing you guys discuss this (Probe) academically and in this weird, semi-isolated and non-holistic fashion when that's really not what B/R policy has been about for a while.

What are the play patterns that you think might make Probe part of the B/R discussion? Why are they problematic (or not) to a fun and healthy gaming experience (which includes such things as 'do I want to spend 6 continuous hours playing with this 75 card pile')?

At least @Soly, for his bluster and extreme rudeness, is describing play patterns he doesn't like. I happen to think he's kind of whining a bit, but you know what, he's entitled to it. For him if it's not fun then it's not fun, I just happen to think (opinion) that most people prefer a different version of Vintage with different play patterns.

@ribby said in JANUARY 9, 2017 BANNED AND RESTRICTED ANNOUNCEMENT POLL:

I'm a little frustrated seeing you guys discuss this (Probe) academically and in this weird, semi-isolated and non-holistic fashion when that's really not what B/R policy has been about for a while.

Ummm... its one of the cards that was actually banned, are we discussing the announcement or what you think should be banned?

  • 173
    Posts
  • 91486
    Views