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Monday, September 7, 2015

a reasonable discussion of the possibility that edh is bullshit

Sometimes, competitive Magic just isn’t doing it for people. Instead of spending weeks tuning someone else’s deck, spending $25 at a tournament, and getting mana-screwed in a rigid bracket, some players want to chill out, play cards they enjoy playing, and not worry about if everything is the most optimal it could possibly be. In other words: play casually.

The issue is that casual sucks.


The solution to “pure casual” sucking is to create some direction for players to follow; that is, a casual format. This attempts to solve the “Just Play Whatever You Want” problem, where someone’s pile of leftover commons and uncommons run into someone’s tuned Affinity.

Casual formats, almost by definition, have to be weird and arbitrary. If they didn’t have bizarre rules and restrictions, they’d just feel like any “normal” constructed format. Hence, we get things like 5-color’s huge deck size, EDH’s singleton and color restrictions, and Tiny Leaders’s CMC rule. The point is not to be permissive enough to allow familiar decks, but to require players to create something entirely new, specifically for that format.[1]

[1] Tiny Leaders interests me more than any other casual format, and while I haven’t actually like played the format, I can 100% personally guarantee that Mental Misstep and Vedalken Shackles are absurd and it’s amazing that those weren’t immediately banned, what the fuck.

It is the nature of any invented format that, with enough time and attention from enough dedicated deckbuilders, a metagame of accepted best decks and strategies will emerge. I played in a small “manacost singleton” tournament, for example, where each player chose a specific mana cost and could only use cards with that exact cost. I built combo Elves (G), lost only to burn (R), and it’s tough to think of a deck that would have a good matchup against that deck without being comically dedicated to hating it out.

Once a format comes around to a phase when enough players have worked on it to develop its distinct metagame, players are faced with a choice: do they react to the metagame by tuning their own decks against it? Do they rally the format’s devotees into changing the rules or banning the cards that comprise the best deck? Or do they get all sullen and make passive-aggressive forum posts about people Destroying Are Format?

The more anti-competitive format supporters will be inclined to resist the existence of the metagame, believing that since their format is “for fun,” it should be immune to the natural progression of deck improvement. People on the more competitive side are more inclined to embrace it, and a well-designed format should be able to support a diverse metagame without either collapsing or turning into a one-deck navel-gazing format.

I don’t know exactly how EDH caught on as the only casual constructed format, but personally, I blame judges. This group generally has broad access to cards, wide-ranging knowledge of Magic, a large friend group of people that want to hang out with three-hour games, and very little interest in winning games of Magic.

EDH’s issues as a format spring largely from its non-restrictive nature. Beyond the 99 card singleton construction, if one chooses some generic 5-color general, you can pretty much play a singleton Legacy deck without much issue; because of the concessions to people’s favorite casual cards, there are lots of draws that can be significantly better than an average Legacy deck, because of completely legal cards like Sol Ring, Skullclamp, and Sedge Troll.

I’m not sure if everyone reading this has played games with or against turn one Sol Ring. If the player opposing Sol Ring is playing “fair,” and the Ringed player is doing anything at all reasonable (eg playing a decent four-mana spell on turn two), the latter player is going to win about 80% of those games.

The typical EDH response is to ignore this entirely, because that’s not the point of EDH, maaan. EDH doesn’t need to ban powerful cards like Sol Ring, because if someone’s deck is too powerful, they’ll be shunned from cardshops everywhere and have to wander the streets, Sharuum in hand, desperately seeking someone who will lose to their infinite combo.

Gotta ban Biorhythm, Sylvan Primordial, and Trade Secrets[2], though, because those risk actually ending a game.

[2] Reprinted in the Commander expansion, ironically.

For deeper insight into what EDH is really about, I recommend reading articles from the former home of satirical Jesse Mason writing, GatheringMagic. Jason Alt wrote a piece introducing the concept of the 75% EDH deck, wherein decks are purposefully made to be not-optimal in order to fit in better with other peoples’ EDH decks. He explains:

“In a good night of Commander for my playgroup, I will win 1 ÷ X games, where X is the number of players at the table. It isn't about letting anyone else win, it's not about fetching mana dorks with your Tooth and Nail because finding Deadeye Navigator and Molten Primordial is going to make everyone upset, and it's not about being patronizing to your group. Winning that proportion of the games will avoid painting a target on your back or making anyone resent your involvement. You want to make decks that let you “do a thing” that will be fun to do and that don't prevent others from “doing their thing” on principle, but that may provide ways for you to actively stop opponents if they are getting out of hand.”

In short: his idea is that he does not want to win every game of EDH.

It is this attitude, among others, that fundamentally irks me about EDH people. They have constructed Magic decks, with actual Magic cards, each of which should have some sort of gameplay interaction with other Magic cards. But even from deck construction, no one is set out to win the games that they enter. Well, not any more games than anyone else at the table. So what, then, is the intent of EDH? Back to Mr. Alt:

“Some people like being able to play the big, Timmy cards, some people like making decks full of Japanese foil cards and keeping the deck together forever in a format where metagame shifts don't really happen because there is no metagame.”

As far as the big Timmy cards: it should be noted that the Commander banlist is full of big Timmy cards, so don’t go running around trying to cast one of those seven different spells that cost eight or more mana (and no goddamned Protean Hulks, either[3]). If the goal is to make a format that encourages this big-mana haymaker-type gameplay, there should really be a more elegant way to craft a format without just getting passive-aggressive at people trying to end the game swiftly. Rainbow Stairwell dictated a strict progression of mana costs; perhaps a format with an even higher lifetotal, or a cardpool that excluded the ways that games commonly end before nine mana, could do this.

[3] Protean Hulk/Greater Good aggro/combo was one of my favorite Standard decks that I’ve ever built, so this definitely prevents me from ever playing EDH.

The point about “decks full of Japanese foil cards” seems much more realistic. Basically, people want to spend a shitload of money on the game and force people around them to notice this. When making an efficient deck is socially discouraged, the real “winners” are the ones who have a $10,000 untuned deck, with a horrifically unbalanced manabase all in foils or black-bordered dual lands.

EDH is the best summary of conspicuous consumption I’ve ever seen. People aren’t trying to be good at the game, or build the most effective deck, or even win once they’re inside it. They’re just trying to show off the cool stuff they own.

If competitive Magic is auto racing, EDH is a bunch of people revving their heavily-modded Ferraris at each other in a parking lot without going anywhere.

Think about the standard story of the underdog against the antagonist: the antagonist has every advantage possible, with a privileged upbringing, all the flashiest gear and the latest tech. Our hero, though, through the virtues of hard work and friendship, practices [activity] in his backyard, in the alleyways, in his basement until he somehow overthrows the terrible reign of the antagonist. Egos are shattered, screams are heard, expensive things are thrown against the walls in denial and frustration.

Like most of humanity, I have a natural urge to root for the scrappy, skillful person against the rich egotistical one. In League, I love the idea of a cocky Gold-ranked player with the Championship Riven skin (est. value ~$300 while it was available for resale via third-party sites) getting stomped by some Challenger smurf using Galio because the champion was free that week.

EDH’s ideology seems to be the polar opposite of this. Don’t try to win more than the average number of games, but aggressively move to make your deck as ~pimp~ as it could possibly be. I constantly see people posting blatant brag pictures of their completely foiled-up, as-expensive-as-humanly-possible EDH deck, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone post an EDH gamestate and asking what the proper line of play was. This makes sense, because if people at all value playing optimally, as Mr. Alt says, “there are myriad formats people can play if they want to be Spikes.”[4]

[4] Oh wow, have I really not written the essay about how silly the Timmy/Johnny/Spike idea is? Huh.

EDH doesn’t make any sense as far as format design, because EDH doesn’t have to make any sense from a game design perspective. The purpose of EDH’s construction is to give people an excuse to build something as comically expensive as possible; formats that allow less financial showing off are therefore inferior. What are the most expensive cards? Black-bordered Alpha and Beta. Those have to be allowed.[5] A larger deck size allows more showing off.

[5] The only problem with this thinking is that EDH bans the power nine, as well as some pseudo-power like Time Vault and Library of Alexandria. I can rationalize this: the dual lands are the perfect cards to include in a format, because of their wide availability in their hideously ugly Revised printings. What’s better than playing a really expensive card? Playing a really expensive card available in other versions for 1/20th that price, and the common player still can’t afford it even in the cheapest possible version. On the other hand, if actual power was allowed, the only way the format could go on is tacitly allowing proxies (because something like 1/10th as many Black Lotuses exist as Underground Seas). A format with the purpose of showing off wealth couldn’t possibly allow proxies; that would defeat the point.

Mr. Alt’s statement that there “is no metagame” is a fundamental misunderstanding of both the term and the idea of a metagame. A metagame is not simply what decks people play (and even by that ceonceptualization, EDH certainly has a metagame with its ramp decks, its combo decks, its reanimator decks, its draw-my-entire library decks). A metagame is everything relating to the game outside of the actual game itself. EDH’s metagame is not just whether Derevi is absurd, but the styles of play that have become common in EDH. And we all know that EDH has a specific style to it: if I describe a non-EDH gamestate, even a 1v1, as looking “like EDH,” people will know what I mean.

EDH’s metagame is nine-mana enchantments that do nothing but combo with a six-mana enchantment. It is purposefully intricate synergies that revolve around copying Doubling Season. But it’s bigger than that, too.

EDH’s metagame is Mr. Alt’s article about the 75% idea (almost a dogma). EDH’s metagame is his idea that the format is appealing because it has “no metagame.” Ignoring the prevailing trends, player types, and tropes of EDH is EDH’s metagame.

Whenever I write something critiquing an aspect of Magic or the community, people will respond by asking whether I even like Magic. Since I certainly expect that response from EDH players, I’ll ask them: do you?

Do you actually enjoy playing games of Magic? No, not the part where everyone looks at your foreign foils. The part where your cards do stuff with the other cards. Are you really paying attention to how everything in the game is progressing? Or are you just waiting for your turn to do your super cool but definitely not infinite combo?

If you love Magic so much, why do you spend thousands on your EDH deck instead of giving away homebrew $20 decks to new players?

Would you play Magic if there were no foils, no promos, no rarity? Would you love your Temporal Manipulation if everyone had five copies?

Would you play Magic if you didn’t have any Magic cards?

To me, the ideal casual Magic format is cube. One person supplies all the cards; doesn’t matter if it includes every piece of power in its original Alpha printing, or if they just picked up the entire cube at Kinko’s yesterday. Everyone starts out at equal footing: you sit down with nothing but your knowledge of Magic, without spending anything. The cube designer gets to decide exactly what about Magic they find the most fun, and if everyone in the draft agrees with that perspective, they’ll have a great time.

Cube is also the most self-expressive way to play Magic. When you’re faced with a pack of 15 powerful cards and have a minute to make the decision, you swiftly find out what you, personally, think of as the “best” way to play. I didn’t think of myself as a devoted control player until I drafted cube over and over and went with a control deck eight out of ten times. Aggro players will find themselves with a higher number of Goblin Guides per capita.

Unlike constructed formats that require a deck built beforehand, cube requires players to build one on the fly. Even if you try to draft the same deck every time, in a well-constructed cube it’ll end up radically different from one draft to the next, by virtue of random card assortment and the natural variance of different drafters’ preferences. You’ll learn what happens when Magical Panic starts, as you find your intended two-color combination is completely absent after the first three picks. If you’ve always heard that Tangle Wire is way underrated, you’ll get a chance to try it for yourself when it wheels.[6]

[6] DO NOT PASS TANGLE WIRE.

Cube is an interesting exercise in multiple layers of creativity and expression: Wizards created the cards, and the cube designer expresses themselves via inclusions and exclusions in their cube. Then, each player expresses their deckbuilding artistry in a framework two layers deep. They will make things that even the cube designer had never thought of; they are simultaneously working with and against the designer on their own creation. They are indulging the designer while attempting to break the design, via an overpowered draft deck.

Magic is overall a good game, and a much better game than “acquire the expensive shiny cardboard.” But we should all agree about what the best game is: making EDH players angry on the internet.

27 comments:

Jenx said...

Cube is even better at displays of money than EDH is too - you have more than 100 cards which to "pimp out" (god I fucking hate this term) and to showcase in front of people. So it even has that going for it too.

John said...

This isn't reflective of EDH as I know it. I know like one guy of the many that I've met who has a very high-budget EDH deck and he's just a little nuts. My EDH deck is built from cards that I've accumulated playing standard since I started playing during Rise of Eldrazi and random trade pickups here and there. It is a reflection of myself as a magic player, and I play to win. EDH incorporates more types of players than you describe here, which is honestly more of an ugly stereotype than an everyday occurrence.

Seth Petersen said...

also started at rise, not sure what all the hate is about. im pretty sure people will find a way to brag about cards and make misrepresentative claims about their format whether or not edh exists.

Kestrel said...

I definitely get your point about the mission creep of casual formats. My friends and I always set out to play budget decks - mine particularly focused on making stupid cards "work" in a deck - but inevitably the more competitive of us push the limits of "budget" or "casual." When this happens we readjust and typically everything is brought back to the previous norm. It's akin to establishing gentleman's rules in fighting games by banning unbreakable combos and "cheap moves."

As for EDH, so long as everyone at the table understands it's a silly format for silly cards, everyone should be having a good time.

The Maneuver said...

"The way other people enjoy Magic is different to the way I enjoy Magic so therefore I am right and they are wrong."

The Maneuver said...

"The way other people enjoy Magic is different to the way I enjoy Magic so therefore I am right and they are wrong."

Caleb Boyington said...

A lot of great points in this article. And as a person who mainly plays EDH I have certainly run into the types of players described here. Hell, I've been the types of players described here. But I'll keep playing EDH, because it's a great way for me to sit down with my friends and goof off with cards I otherwise wouldn't get to play for a few hours.

Caleb Boyington said...

A lot of great points in this article. And as a person who mainly plays EDH I have certainly run into the types of players described here. Hell, I've been the types of players described here. But I'll keep playing EDH, because it's a great way for me to sit down with my friends and goof off with cards I otherwise wouldn't get to play for a few hours.

Caleb Boyington said...

A lot of great points in this article. And as a person who mainly plays EDH I have certainly run into the types of players described here. Hell, I've been the types of players described here. But I'll keep playing EDH, because it's a great way for me to sit down with my friends and goof off with cards I otherwise wouldn't get to play for a few hours.

Yllipolly said...

The Maneuver: The EDH community is a way worse sinner in that regard than this article is. "Wah, you play LD in your deck?!? You're no fun. How can my deck that has 15 lands in play turn 5 win, if you play armageddon." or "counterspell on my Kikki-Jiki, I'm don't even have an infinite combo in play yet, or "Yosei? If I don't untap, how am I to play, and copy this Time Stretch I have in my hand?"

Tomij said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kosti Jokinen said...

As someone who has enjoyed both casual and tournament Magic, I'm constantly puzzled by how utterly incapable people in either group are at understanding the other viewpoint. I can't say any single detail in this article is wrong per se, but I do think it completely misses the point of casual play and goes off on some weird assumptions.

An interesting description of social gaming that I've heard is that you aren't playing a game, you're engaging in a "game-like activity". A tournament player aims to enjoy the game itself. He spends a lot of mental energy on the game, makes hard decisions, enjoys the challenge of it. A casual player aims to hang out with friends, drink beer, and while he's at it, as a kind of a mcguffin he also plays some cards which hopefully results in cool interactions coming up every now and then.

Played as a game, EDH is just garbage. An imbalanced format with a complete joke of a banlist. But as a game-like activity among players who approach it as such and don't push its limits, it's great. It's one of the best formats at creating the kinds of games that kind of environment is about. I could take issue to several things in those two short excerpts from Jason Alt's article, but they are perfectly consistent with optimizing for a smoothest possible game-like activity.

A lot of casual players are terrible at articulating these goals, or even actively in denial about not playing to win. I don't mind flaming those people, and a decent chunk of the article is exactly that. But conjuring up a strawman player whose main motivation is showing off foils, then labelling him as the poster boy of the format? That's just ridiculous and far below what I would expect from you.

Personally I prefer playing to win, but can also pass time just casually playing some cards every now and then. You can write an article about why the latter is stupid for all I care, I've heard enough of "casual sucks" from tournament players I'm friends with. But an article entirely about how casual formats don't hold up to something they aren't even trying to do? No shit.

Mehall said...

For me, EDH is the way to play Magic like when I first started playing. I have a deck with too many cards, I won't draw my super powerhouse cards in most games because I don't have multiples of them. I've added cards or combinations of cards to my deck that would get laughed out of the room at FNM, but in EDH can shine, or at least let me have some fun with it.

It introduces a different aspect to the game. Do I go in trying to win every game? Sometimes. It can depend on which of my decks I bring out. If I'm bringing Marchesa or my Vaevictis Asmadi deck, I'm looking to bring power to the table. If I bring out Sidisi or Brago, I'm going to have a menacing board state, but likely fall a little short when people realise what I'm up to. If I bring out my mono-green control deck, I'm looking for reactions of people asking "Now what the hell does this uncommon from homelands do?", I'm having fun by utilising cards people haven't really seen before, meaning that even the 2nd or 3rd time they play against me, they can't really predict how it's going to go.

I can bring any of these different aspects to the table, at any time, often multiples at a time. When was the last time you saw an Urborg in play? And no, I don't mean "Tomb of Yawgmoth". What about seeing Bloodbraid Elf cascade into Necropotence?


Most of all, EDH is the game that you play when you and your friends want a couple beers and to chat over. It's like chucking on a bad movie in the background, you're not really gonna watch it, so the next day when you're discussing it you only remember the ridiculous bit where the guy chainsaws through the giant cockroach to save a cheerleader, not the bit where everyone plays draw-go, or the bit where a wrath is cast every other turn.

Phil DeLuca said...

A very warped perspective of a format by a person who doesn't play that format. I don't understand how EDH is more a demonstration of "conspicuous consumption" than a format that *requires* a set of six cards in excess of $10,000 for those alone, but that's just me. :)

In my experience, the average EDH deck costs about what an average competitive Standard deck does, less than an average Modern deck, and usually about what a set of golf clubs costs - unless you've been buying cards all along, in which case the actual cost is far, far less.

If you're late to the party and want to play expensive cards, blame Wizards' reprint policies, not a format. That's just... Silly. :)

Unknown said...

This was not "discussion",
this was straight up "buh buh I don't like this so I made up some incorrect stuff to bash it on the internet"
like, wtf? his main point seems to be that all of EDH is just people showing off their bling. yes, this is obviously why budget decks and proxies are so popular in the community.
If have not yet met a single player with that mindset. Decks in my playgroup range from 20$ to about 2000$.
Focus is on the fun and being social. If somebody tried to play with an all japanese deck (again, from the article) around here, people would probably just be annoyed that they can't read the cards properly..

Altaria87 said...

It's amusing that you put in a footnote about disliking the Timmy/Jenny/Spike psychographics when this article is a brilliant demonstration of it. This is a Spike who doesn't understand that other people like Magic in different ways to wanting to win.

News flash, some people like to play big dumb multiplayer games as a social experience which happens to include fun cards. Claiming this is just an excuse to show off expensive cards shows your complete ignorance of why people might want to play EDH

Unknown said...

I would like to say, that my edh decks aren't about expensive foil cards or anything like that. I like playing archetypes that don't work from what I have seen in the competitive things, or can't even run in standard. Like my Boros Damage ramp soldier deck. I find EDH as a format that allows people to express themselves without needing to worry about winning within 5 minutes.

Matthew Zaabadick said...

Dude like omg you totally hurt my feelings and now im going to cut myself with an umezawas jittle with the help of my stoneforge mystic commander. Liek mann y you always got to ruin my day. Now I am going to talk about what an asshole I think you are for questioning my EDH life and how liek I am some fag on the internet who cares more about what random fucks say about me instead of me getting off the computer and getting a god damn life outside of my fucking EDH deck! /sarcasm

No but really you captured my thoughts about EDH to some extent. I also find people who play EDH tend to be really awkward and sometimes even annoying to be around since all they do is bitch about everything. Sometimes I blame Wizards for making it an official thing, but it was probably going to happen regardless of them.

Phil DeLuca said...

Sounds like more "you're not playing the way I do so it sucks" or projection to me.

If you enjoy playing in a S/M/L/V group - even if you're complaining about EDH or EDH players - fine; the intolerance is surprising, though.

I didn't realize one could "play wrong" unless one were being an asshole to the other players while playing, like asking new players to play faster by rolling your hand to tell them to move along (happened, I called him out on it so he ripped off my podcast).

EDH offers exploration and new cards, even if they're nearly 20 years old. I see things that are quite literally impossible in other formats, where shuffling is the mid game and turn one is the late game (L, V). If winning by turn five is for you, there are at least three formats for you to enjoy. If watching a big machine turn over and proceed to smash other big machines is fun, there's EDH. It's pretty fun to watch 21 plants and a giant elephant-thing stomp over for >200 points of damage... Even if they're not foils. ;)

Jeremy Ethan Deutsch said...

I don't personally enjoy EDH, but this post reeks of "my Magic is better than your Magic." Who's to say that by playing EDH just to show off your Alpha Sol Ring, you aren't enjoying "actually playing Magic?"

Ruvyn said...

EDH exists so that good players can intentionally shoot themselves in the foot to play with less good players. I have two regular playgroups: the guys at college, and the guys at my local game store. The latter gets top-tier standard decks and plays vicious and cutthroat. The former is people who have picked up the game within the past year and still have trouble remembering all the rules. And even at the local game store, a lot of the people just... aren't particularly good at the game. But I like these people.

the EDH mindset, having weird decks that do cool things but don't reliably win, lets me play against the people less skilled than me without them getting upset or frustrated. It's about /making sure my opponents have fun./ When I play my standard deck, I don't worry about my opponent enjoying himself. I worry about my opponent's life going from 20 to 0. When I play my EDH deck, my ultimate goal is to say "Wanna see something cool?" and then making a creature whose power and toughness are equal to twice the number of forests I control in a monogreen deck. My green deck is specifically designed to be terrifying but not overtly good, to give my less skilled opponents a reasonable chance to win while I'm trying my hardest /in/ the game. And you just can't do that as well in other formats.



...Also, if your EDH group is more "People showing off the most expensive deck they can cobble together with a 5 color general" than "people running crazy things to see what sort of crazy ensues," then that's a problem with your playgroup, not a problem with the format.

Unknown said...

All I have to say is:

"[4] Oh wow, have I really not written the essay about how silly the Timmy/Johnny/Spike idea is? Huh."

DO IT.

Ablemcman said...

I'll start by saying that I've seen all of the problems that you've identified with EDH at different times, but I still feel like there are redeeming features to EDH and some parts of the dogma attributed to it. To me EDH has a different purpose to each other format of magic- I like EDH best when its not about who wins but what happens. When you play a format like modern how do you start? Once you've chosen one of the formats pre set decks to pilot, built it and played against a deck you can be pretty sure how the the game will go- you have good matchups and bad matchups and each deck has a set progression which it wants to get to and wants to stop the opponent from getting theirs. Ultimately the goal is to have the best chance of winning possible through strategy and planning.

EDH In my personal opinion should be an antidote to the monotony of that type of magic. The idea of the format is that it should be unpredictable and the question when you are shown a boardstate is not ideally "How do you solve this?" but how did this get here? A dance of threat answer- board-wipe politicing and then finally somebody winning is really how my ideal EDH Game goes. Wild and weird plays- adjusting your strategy on the fly and political calculation are in my mind what makes EDH a fun format.

League has a pretty good analogue to EDH in my mind with ARAM: you kinda need to be prepared for anything and while there is definitely a meta but adhering to it is not really the point. True EDH isn't random but to a degree people's general preferences are their own and sometimes making a less than amazing colour combination and legend work is very satisfying.

Finally I feel like article neglects the idea of a local meta. Its generally a good idea to adapt to the power level of those around you and while this can yes become cliquey and has its own problems it does mean that there is a Meta- its just not always the same universally.

Unknown said...

My FLGS almost exclusively plays EDH, a few of us play constructed formats(L/M) sometimes but for the most part its EDH every Friday for the past 7 years or so. because you dont get the players that ruin the game ala that FNM guys. We don't have to worry about getting 4 of a $100 card, or timing our mana till its just right, or running the rat race cramming 4 50min rounds and top whatever into a Friday night or even being the rich kid who plays standard every season. We show up play a game, see some cool interactions, trade, talk to our friends go get food, a beer whatever. It's pretty laid back. We draw a lot of new players, and we try to keep them ignorant of constructed formats as long as possible. We are just trying to keep the game fun. I've heard your speel before from That FNM guy. Which is cool, run that rat race, I'm glad you do and I don't. My time is worth more than spending 4-6hours for 25$ credit.

Dezzo said...

I play Mtg quite regularly with a group that mixes it up with modern and legecy. Things can get rather salty at times (like when somebody turns up with a cloudpost myr combo deck against ur junky modern homebrew). I been trying to advocate to them the joys of Cube. And since I had one (Peasant cube) they can go in it with no investment except time.

Of the two times they played it so far, all I saw were laughs and much fun. I guess when u are able to go into something with no monetary investment, things can really be fun since u just try to do your best with what you draft from the cube.

adam said...

i hate EDH....why? because as you pointed out, it killed casual magic.

once upon a time i could go to a game shop, find random folks, say let's play and we played. who knows what kinds of decks we had....occasionally i ran into some super legacy going to destroy me decks....but far more often than not i ran into a playable deck that in a group setting of 4 or more players, we didnt just outright kill each other instantly

EDH also killed twin head dragon or tag team magic which was great fun, as i often have two decks that through sheer coincidence work alarmingly well together.

but now? its all "sorry i only have EDH decks"....well screw you too then.

look i love the stupid cards....i love when stupid cards shine....in yugioh i made everyone i played with fear that stupid as anything inaba the white rabbit(to this day....Im the only person I've ever met in a yugioh card shop that had an original deck so I am well remembered)....and took obscenely dumb cards and beat you to death with them. i enjoy stupid cards....and i even do this with magic....my current standard deck has a mix of stupid fun in it though it can be rather lethal. but this can all be done well within the confines of a 60 card deck.

magic functions great at 60 cards. it works well. i used to rather enjoy massive 8 player games with 60 card decks. i don't know how it was decided EDH did this better. plenty of stupid cards and stupid decks get played in that old format. because see the thing is...only the truly absurd infinite combos don't have to worry about 7 other players ganging up on you....and if the other 7 players know you have a ridiculous going to kill us all combo, half the fun was seeing if we could kill that guy fast enough. even still....old broken legacy decks, arent all that common out in the wild and the odds of finding one by asking a random person "hey want to play?" arent all that high.

EDH to be blunt, sucks and did as you pointed out, ruin casual play.

furthermore EDH games take to freaking long.....old 8 player games can take too long as it is.....but EDH seems to exist solely to drag the game out infinitely, plus shuffling 99 cards is dumb and illogical.

20 life points, 60 cards, 40 cards on draft nights > EDH.

adam said...

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