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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 10:51 am 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
-Long history of being used for evil? It's been banned since 2009. I consider myself an EDH veteran and I'm not even sure I was playing the format while it was legal. Even if you've been playing since the format began, that's still only a few years of being legal at the most, and the meta has changed substantially since then. If you're saying you know how it would be used if it were legal, you're lying.
-Gee, I'm sorry I don't think extremely anecdotal evidence is an efficient way to go about demonstrating a card shouldn't be banned. I know I wouldn't abuse it because I explicitly avoid combos with all my decks, but how I, specifically, would use it isn't the issue, and it isn't why it was banned. Plus it sounds like Uriel has already done the legwork and you've totally ignored him, so why would I bother?
-I give you soul foundry and cryptic command. Meh?


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 10:58 am 
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Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Midgard
Himetic wrote:
Plus it sounds like Uriel has already done the legwork and you've totally ignored him, so why would I bother?

Where did Uriel post extensive results again? Never seen any, and really haven't for anything posted by Uriel. Just because Uriel says it's been done doesn't mean squat until it's posted and everyone can follow the process, evaluate the results, and therefore draw a logical conclusion.

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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 11:40 am 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
Segrus wrote:
Himetic wrote:
Plus it sounds like Uriel has already done the legwork and you've totally ignored him, so why would I bother?

Where did Uriel post extensive results again? Never seen any, and really haven't for anything posted by Uriel. Just because Uriel says it's been done doesn't mean squat until it's posted and everyone can follow the process, evaluate the results, and therefore draw a logical conclusion.


While that sounds like a nifty (albeit time consuming, boring, and almost certainly ineffective) idea, it's still completely anecdotal. If I build a deck to try to break it, it's going to look like it should be banned, but I could do the same thing with T&N, ad nauseam, hermit druid, etc. If I build a deck to avoid breaking it, it's going to look fine. It doesn't prove anything either way.

The only real question, afaik, is "if this card were legalized, would it ruin games?" Maybe if there were dozens of people in different playgroups who all tested it, you could have a semi-decent sampling (although it would still be limited to the sort of people who talk about EDH on the internet), but me testing it alone really proves absolutely nothing either way.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm guessing from your join date that you're not part of the RC. If the RC was open to the idea of unbanning it and wanted people to test it out (as in "dozens of people in different playgroups testing it"), then I would be happy to help, and I'd do my best to be objective about it. But I'm not going to waste my time unless I think there's a chance it's going to actually matter.

The point of me posting in this thread is in the hopes of getting something like that going.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:04 pm 
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Joined: 2009-Aug-20 7:49 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: New Hampshire
Himetic wrote:
-Long history of being used for evil? It's been banned since 2009. I consider myself an EDH veteran and I'm not even sure I was playing the format while it was legal. Even if you've been playing since the format began, that's still only a few years of being legal at the most, and the meta has changed substantially since then.

I was playing before it was banned. I've seen it used many times, and not once was it not to assemble an "I win" combo. The difference between a card like Gifts and a card like Kokusho is that tutors only get stronger as the power level of cards in the format increases, whereas Kokopuffs just looks tamer and tamer as time goes by. There is no evidence to suggest that it would suddenly be a weaker card now than it was back then.

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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:17 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
Sid the Chicken wrote:
Himetic wrote:
-Long history of being used for evil? It's been banned since 2009. I consider myself an EDH veteran and I'm not even sure I was playing the format while it was legal. Even if you've been playing since the format began, that's still only a few years of being legal at the most, and the meta has changed substantially since then.

I was playing before it was banned. I've seen it used many times, and not once was it not to assemble an "I win" combo. The difference between a card like Gifts and a card like Kokusho is that tutors only get stronger as the power level of cards in the format increases, whereas Kokopuffs just looks tamer and tamer as time goes by. There is no evidence to suggest that it would suddenly be a weaker card now than it was back then.


Same is true of hermit druid - in fact, it's significant more busted than when the format began.

However, just because it CAN be busted doesn't mean it actually IS frequently busted. And the same is true for gifts. It's been banned for a long time, metas have changed, I think people pack more answers, and also what constitutes a fast win is different than it was 5 years ago. Do I know it would be a good addition? Well, no. But you don't know it would be a bad addition either. I think it's something the RC should at least consider.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:25 pm 

Joined: 2008-Jan-25 8:26 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Calgary
Gifts encourages endless Gifts recursion more than it encourages combos.

This sucks for everyone except the guy who, every game, sets things up to play Gifts once per turn cycle.

It truly doesn't matter if that person is trying to assemble some "I win" combo or not.

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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:31 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
tarnar wrote:
Gifts encourages endless Gifts recursion more than it encourages combos.

This sucks for everyone except the guy who, every game, sets things up to play Gifts once per turn cycle.

It truly doesn't matter if that person is trying to assemble some "I win" combo or not.


How about we all just agree that there's a lot of ways to use it, and maybe not try to assert that the way a few people in your specific playgroup five years ago used it is the only way it ever gets used?


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:53 pm 

Joined: 2014-Feb-06 3:07 pm
Age: Drake
The question of "Why Gifts Ungiven" has been answered many times, many ways. The burden is on you to answer "Why Not Gifts Ungiven," and you're going to need a much more convincing answer than because you think so.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 12:54 pm 

Joined: 2014-Feb-14 4:18 pm
Age: Hatchling
Himetic wrote:
tarnar wrote:
Gifts encourages endless Gifts recursion more than it encourages combos.

This sucks for everyone except the guy who, every game, sets things up to play Gifts once per turn cycle.

It truly doesn't matter if that person is trying to assemble some "I win" combo or not.


How about we all just agree that there's a lot of ways to use it, and maybe not try to assert that the way a few people in your specific playgroup five years ago used it is the only way it ever gets used?


I've been playing EDH for little over a year and a half and I can agree that Gifts should remain banned. Let's not assume that every playgroup is like you, and are capable of using Gifts fairly. This forum only represents a minority of playgroups. Most groups will either follow EDH rules strictly on bans and everything else is fair game like how my group is or will just hose rule things to their preference. My group allows everything that's not on the ban list and pretty much agrees with it. The problem is Gifts has gotten more powerful as time went on since it is a tutor. There have been more recursion cards printed making Gifts worse. More than likely Gifts will be used in a broken manor intentional. You have done nothing to prove that it should be unbanned just argue and bicker about the decision five years ago. Come back after you have play tested with gifts and list the decks that were used. There will always be cases that can be created where any card can be fair, so we need to see deck lists to check with the deck it was in was built not to abuse or it not.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 1:02 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
MiniDragon wrote:
Himetic wrote:
tarnar wrote:
Gifts encourages endless Gifts recursion more than it encourages combos.

This sucks for everyone except the guy who, every game, sets things up to play Gifts once per turn cycle.

It truly doesn't matter if that person is trying to assemble some "I win" combo or not.


How about we all just agree that there's a lot of ways to use it, and maybe not try to assert that the way a few people in your specific playgroup five years ago used it is the only way it ever gets used?


I've been playing EDH for little over a year and a half and I can agree that Gifts should remain banned. Let's not assume that every playgroup is like you, and are capable of using Gifts fairly. This forum only represents a minority of playgroups. Most groups will either follow EDH rules strictly on bans and everything else is fair game like how my group is or will just hose rule things to their preference. My group allows everything that's not on the ban list and pretty much agrees with it. The problem is Gifts has gotten more powerful as time went on since it is a tutor. There have been more recursion cards printed making Gifts worse. More than likely Gifts will be used in a broken manor intentional. You have done nothing to prove that it should be unbanned just argue and bicker about the decision five years ago. Come back after you have play tested with gifts and list the decks that were used. There will always be cases that can be created where any card can be fair, so we need to see deck lists to check with the deck it was in was built not to abuse or it not.


-No offense, but I'm not really taking your word for it that the card is problematic when you've only been playing for a year and a half, especially since the card's been banned since long before you started playing. I would argue there's no evidence on either side of the fence at this point, considering how long it's been banned. Any evidence from 5 years ago is long past its expiration date, imo.
-I wouldn't assume every group is like mine, just like I think tarnar shouldn't assume every group is like his (otherwise that'd be pretty hypocritical, innit). Testing in a single group is meaningless. Any card that's considered for unbanning should be extensively tested in many groups to really determine what the effect would be.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 1:11 pm 

Joined: 2014-Feb-14 4:18 pm
Age: Hatchling
Himetic wrote:

-No offense, but I'm not really taking your word for it that the card is problematic when you've only been playing for a year and a half, especially since the card's been banned since long before you started playing. I would argue there's no evidence on either side of the fence at this point, considering how long it's been banned. Any evidence from 5 years ago is long past its expiration date, imo.
-I wouldn't assume every group is like mine, just like I think tarnar shouldn't assume every group is like his (otherwise that'd be pretty hypocritical, innit). Testing in a single group is meaningless. Any card that's considered for unbanning should be extensively tested in many groups to really determine what the effect would be.


Just because I haven't played EDH very doesn't mean that I don't understand how it works. So based on that, then I shouldn't take your word for unbanning Gifts since you haven't shown any proof of why it should come off.
There is merit to testing in a single group. It shows that there is some backing to the case of it's unbanning. By having one group test the card will help others group to decide to as well. They aren't going to try to test without some evidence first. When it comes to unbanning you have to put your foot forward first before others will try to follow.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 1:32 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
MiniDragon wrote:
Himetic wrote:

-No offense, but I'm not really taking your word for it that the card is problematic when you've only been playing for a year and a half, especially since the card's been banned since long before you started playing. I would argue there's no evidence on either side of the fence at this point, considering how long it's been banned. Any evidence from 5 years ago is long past its expiration date, imo.
-I wouldn't assume every group is like mine, just like I think tarnar shouldn't assume every group is like his (otherwise that'd be pretty hypocritical, innit). Testing in a single group is meaningless. Any card that's considered for unbanning should be extensively tested in many groups to really determine what the effect would be.


Just because I haven't played EDH very doesn't mean that I don't understand how it works. So based on that, then I shouldn't take your word for unbanning Gifts since you haven't shown any proof of why it should come off.
There is merit to testing in a single group. It shows that there is some backing to the case of it's unbanning. By having one group test the card will help others group to decide to as well. They aren't going to try to test without some evidence first. When it comes to unbanning you have to put your foot forward first before others will try to follow.


Oh, so you're an expert on how to get a card unbanned, then? How many cards have you gotten unbanned?

I'm fairly confident that I actually had a part in the unbanning of worldgorger dragon (as evidenced by my thread here: http://www.mtgcommander.net/Forum/viewt ... f=2&t=6755 and the subsequent unbanning here: http://www.mtgcommander.net/Forum/viewt ... f=1&t=9564 at a time when, iirc, no one was really talking about it.) Could be a coincidence of course. But I suspect that someone on the RC read my argument, they playtested it, and decided it was cool, and it came off.

If someone from the RC comes to this thread and says "We're considering unbanning it but we want some playtesting" then I'll jump on it. But throwing my time to the wind on the offchance they'll read this thread, when I'm not even sure they're considering unbanning it in the first place? Pass.


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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 3:30 pm 

Joined: 2008-Jan-25 8:26 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Calgary
Himetic wrote:
How about we all just agree that there's a lot of ways to use it, and maybe not try to assert that the way a few people in your specific playgroup five years ago used it is the only way it ever gets used?

No, we won't agree on that because it's a statement with no value in this discussion. There's lots of ways to use every Magic card and to say that as though it dilutes the overwhelmingly negative history or somehow changes the potential of certain cards is quite disingenuous.

Quote:
I would argue there's no evidence on either side of the fence at this point, considering how long it's been banned. Any evidence from 5 years ago is long past its expiration date, imo.

You can argue that all you want but I suspect few will accept that. It's plainly obvious that the potential of a card like Gifts has only gone up not down, so the evidence from 5 years ago should be viewed as a shade of just how bad it would be today.

Also, is it just me or did this thread take on an odour of hubris?

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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 3:44 pm 
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Joined: 2012-Feb-07 4:15 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Himetic wrote:
MiniDragon wrote:
Himetic wrote:

-No offense, but I'm not really taking your word for it that the card is problematic when you've only been playing for a year and a half, especially since the card's been banned since long before you started playing. I would argue there's no evidence on either side of the fence at this point, considering how long it's been banned. Any evidence from 5 years ago is long past its expiration date, imo.
-I wouldn't assume every group is like mine, just like I think tarnar shouldn't assume every group is like his (otherwise that'd be pretty hypocritical, innit). Testing in a single group is meaningless. Any card that's considered for unbanning should be extensively tested in many groups to really determine what the effect would be.


Just because I haven't played EDH very doesn't mean that I don't understand how it works. So based on that, then I shouldn't take your word for unbanning Gifts since you haven't shown any proof of why it should come off.
There is merit to testing in a single group. It shows that there is some backing to the case of it's unbanning. By having one group test the card will help others group to decide to as well. They aren't going to try to test without some evidence first. When it comes to unbanning you have to put your foot forward first before others will try to follow.


Oh, so you're an expert on how to get a card unbanned, then? How many cards have you gotten unbanned?

I'm fairly confident that I actually had a part in the unbanning of worldgorger dragon (as evidenced by my thread here: http://www.mtgcommander.net/Forum/viewt ... f=2&t=6755 and the subsequent unbanning here: http://www.mtgcommander.net/Forum/viewt ... f=1&t=9564 at a time when, iirc, no one was really talking about it.) Could be a coincidence of course. But I suspect that someone on the RC read my argument, they playtested it, and decided it was cool, and it came off.

If someone from the RC comes to this thread and says "We're considering unbanning it but we want some playtesting" then I'll jump on it. But throwing my time to the wind on the offchance they'll read this thread, when I'm not even sure they're considering unbanning it in the first place? Pass.

Alright, if you want to talk about someone who can claim getting a card unbanned, I probably had a hand in the unbanning of Staff of Domination, as evidenced by the fact that less than a month before it was unbanned, I made an unban thread about it (in which a couple RC members even commented that they were considering bringing it back).

In general, if you want something unbanned, you do need anecdotal evidence. And not anecdotal evidence like "my group plays it and it's fine". Anecdotal evidence such as "well, I added it to my Wrexial deck, and out of 50 games I played, it appeared in 20 of them, and was a problematic card 4 times" (I highly doubt this would ever actually happen). Anecdotal evidence works if you give specifics and everyone knows that there's no variables that could skew the results ("I ran Black Lotus and all five moxen but couldn't win a single game!" "That's because you played against a Hermit Druid deck with Avatar Tribal!").

But, as everyone else has said, the burden of proof is on YOU. Gifts hasn't been errata'd to make it weaker, nor have changes in the rules of EDH or Magic made it weaker, and as there is no real EDH metagame, there couldn't possibly be a meta game shift that makes it weaker. If anything, the presence of new targets has made it FAR better. It can now search for hundreds of epic cards it couldn't find before. This means, the reasons it got banned are still applicable. The burden of proof is on YOU to prove that they aren't good enough.

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 Post subject: Re: Why? Gifts Ungiven
AgePosted: 2014-Mar-06 4:41 pm 

Joined: 2011-Mar-07 4:24 pm
Age: Drake
If I'm being honest, I'm not sure I really want to go through that kind of work without at least some indication that it will have some impact. As I said, if someone from the RC has an interest in experimenting with the card, then that's great and I'd be happy to do some experimenting on my own if it'll help. But without the push I'm not really interested in putting in the effort. Mostly just in stirring the crap to see if anything interesting happens.

Anyway,

Personally I feel like the meta has changed substantially from 5 years ago - blue is less dominant and combo is less frequent, in my experience (there's also some info to back this up in the form of this thread: http://www.mtgsalvation.com/forums/the- ... r-metagame which shows that the once-boogeymen combo generals azami and sharuum have fallen substantially in the list, with generally ramp and etb-centered generals maelstrom wanderer, damia, kaalia, and karador taking over the top spots. And while it's anecdotal, I'd say I've seen a similar trend in my LGSs.

All this doesn't prove that gifts wouldn't be abused, of course. But I think it's evidence that the dominant archetypes in most EDH circles are shifting away from straight-up combo, of the form that gifts was banned for enabling, and towards fast ramp strategies. In light of this, I think it's worth testing the card. I hope the RC agrees.


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