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 Post subject: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-22 10:17 am 

Joined: 2017-Oct-19 12:02 am
Age: Drake
Disclaimer: this is not a 'why this is banned or not' thread, I just want to gather fresh opinions to contrast with my own ones. I also used the search option to red some topics about it , they are great and I want to know your current opinions (the topic I read is from 2015)

The objective of this post is not to antagonize with anyone, I only want to read opinions and maybe get cool insights on the topic I can later share with my playgroup.


In my playgroup today we went in a discussion about 'house rules' there is a player that wants to make some changes, so far we have been playing with the standard EDH rules.

He thinks cards like Felidar sovereign should not be played, in our playgroup we have never played the card (but I was about to do it next time).

Only two members of our group have ever seen the card be played, one is the guy who wants it to be banned (he won a game with a felidar) and the other guy also played the felidar but got removed (he does not think the cat to be banable or even relevant).

I don't want to invent our own rules, the committee has the list for a reason and our experience in EDH is much much lower than those guys, so if they don't see the card offensive as coalition victory or similar then why we will be banning it?

The guy who wants felidar banned also wants every card that says 'you win the game' to be banned, he also claims that we should not allow any type of combos combos except for the type we plays (he calls those synergies between cards).

What do you think, is felidar unfair or not?

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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-22 11:48 am 
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Unfair, no

Boring and against the spirit of having an actually fun game, yes


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-22 5:46 pm 
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I have seen it played on a number of occasions, I have never seen it survive long enough to win the game for the caster, but I have seen it cloned to win for someone else. I don't think it is an issue, generally it just eats removal.

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The usual answer is "the social contract", but I guess that is not what you are looking for. Try house rules.


With perfect mana, reasonable removal, disruption, and card advantage, we're back to pitchforks and torches. And it's about to get worse for those who do not enjoy the game as Richard Garfield intended, playing as few win conditions as possible and prompting concession after all hopes (and spells) are lost. - Shaheen Soorani


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-22 7:19 pm 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
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I don't like cards like Felidar Sovereign and Rune-Tail in EDH. House rules are fine, if the group can agree, but I would rather see this handled at WotC's level. They have already started using templates based on "starting life total" (e.g. Ayli and Anya). So, I think they (or house rules) are better off with errata to say these cards are based on starting life total (instead of banning) - so formats with differing starting totals balance the cards they way they were meant to be balanced for 60-card, 20-life formats they were designed for.

Felidar would be "Double Starting life" - which would make it 80 life.
Rune-Tail, Serra Ascendant, etc. could be either "half starting total over the starting total" or "10 above starting total" (whichever balances better - probably 60 for Rune-Tail and 50 for SA)
Infect would be "half life total" or 20 poison for EDH.
Etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 4:45 am 

Joined: 2017-Oct-19 12:02 am
Age: Drake
Treamayne wrote:
I don't like cards like Felidar Sovereign and Rune-Tail in EDH. House rules are fine, if the group can agree, but I would rather see this handled at WotC's level. They have already started using templates based on "starting life total" (e.g. Ayli and Anya). So, I think they (or house rules) are better off with errata to say these cards are based on starting life total (instead of banning) - so formats with differing starting totals balance the cards they way they were meant to be balanced for 60-card, 20-life formats they were designed for.

Felidar would be "Double Starting life" - which would make it 80 life.
Rune-Tail, Serra Ascendant, etc. could be either "half starting total over the starting total" or "10 above starting total" (whichever balances better - probably 60 for Rune-Tail and 50 for SA)
Infect would be "half life total" or 20 poison for EDH.
Etc.


Well, I haven't tested the card yet, but I think I need to point a few things about your considerations.

While its true that felidar was designed to work in a 1v1 environment and the text is "doubled life" if you put it that way, in comander while we have double life we don't have double opponents , we have triple or cuadruple oponents so, 3-4 oponents to use removal, to attack your life total, to counter the felidar. So I remain unconvinced about it.


As a control player (and I do not say this pejoratively) I normally see that people who likes to play diferent strategies sees "unfair" or "unfun", when a control deck is in control of the table then it needs some inevitability to win, you can call that a combo or a very secure token engine or whatever lock wincon you want.

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Playing:
Edgar Markov The current updated decklist is here
Oloro, Ageless ascetic The current updated decklist is here
Yennett, Cryptic Sovereign The current updated decklist is here
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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 5:54 am 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
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alexev wrote:
Well, I haven't tested the card yet, but I think I need to point a few things about your considerations.

While its true that felidar was designed to work in a 1v1 environment and the text is "doubled life" if you put it that way, in comander while we have double life we don't have double opponents , we have triple or cuadruple oponents so, 3-4 oponents to use removal, to attack your life total, to counter the felidar. So I remain unconvinced about it.


As a control player (and I do not say this pejoratively) I normally see that people who likes to play diferent strategies sees "unfair" or "unfun", when a control deck is in control of the table then it needs some inevitability to win, you can call that a combo or a very secure token engine or whatever lock wincon you want.


I was merely providing the requested opinion, not planning on a debate. However, I play mostly on MTGO and can say I have seen dozens of Felidar Sovereigns played (at least 60), with about a 75% success rate. Nearly all of the successes are designed to combo it into play when it is difficult or impossible to respond (usually involving a T1-3, or flash EOT). That information should be in your cross-check.

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Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 8:23 am 
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Joined: 2016-Nov-27 2:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Felidar Sovereign is kind of a boring game-ender unless the deck somehow makes it exciting (by being one that doesn't gain a hundred life easily, for example). It varies a lot between "game ends now unless you can do something" (player wins) 1or "that was a fancy way to waste six mana" (felidar sovereign gets spot removed / board wiped). The same goes for Mortal Combat though.

The principle in having a fun deck is to be engaging and interactive. Uktabi Kong summarised some qualities I agree with very well here in this post. Felidar Sovereign can be just fine if you're not walling up completely & waiting to tutor it out.

Your friend wants to ban all alternate win conditions, but we already have loads of those: Commander damage. Enormous armies that can't be avoided (especially if you're playing Mirri, Weatherlight Duelist). Huge unblockable creatures. Debt to the Deathless or Bond of Agony played in a deck with any lifegain at all. Cyclonic Rift cast in any deck at all when someone's ready to swing for your life totals. Often these cards at some point might as well just say "You win the game", but that's because you built for them and set up for them.

... but then, the same's true for cards that do say "You win the game." You have to build for them and set up for them.

Whether it's a "you win the game" card or any other strategy, there are boring uninteractive ways to play that shut your opponents out and just overwhelm them or bring the game to an unsatisfying conclusion. The idea is to avoid those ways to play and focus on what helps you make a fun deck. Focusing on "you win the game" may be a red herring, just find a way to make it meaningfully interactive and able to bring the game to a satisfying conclusion for everyone. If you can't, if you think the victory will be too cheap & straightforward, don't play with that card.

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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 9:18 am 

Joined: 2017-Oct-19 12:02 am
Age: Drake
spacemonaut wrote:

Whether it's a "you win the game" card or any other strategy, there are boring uninteractive ways to play that shut your opponents out and just overwhelm them or bring the game to an unsatisfying conclusion. The idea is to avoid those ways to play and focus on what helps you make a fun deck. Focusing on "you win the game" may be a red herring, just find a way to make it meaningfully interactive and able to bring the game to a satisfying conclusion for everyone. If you can't, if you think the victory will be too cheap & straightforward, don't play with that card.


This is a point I red a lot of times and I think is a interesting discussion that may deserve its own thread, but now that you raise it I will catch the ball to talk about it.

I find the 'fun deck' argument very subjective, because as I said earlier, if I like to play control, then the deck objective will be most likely to get to a point where is safe to make your play with inevitability, and I don't think this needs to be cataloged as 'unfun' at least not if we are talking about a control deck that tries to win at turn 12-15 or even more.

I understand that a heavy permission deck is unfun to play against (I still remember a game against a monoblue ending in turn 20+ , he won by boringness, we were all at 30+ life)

I understand the boringness of Gaddock teage (wich I have to play against a couple of times) I had to play against some more boring decks like marsil.

But, after all this is a game, the player behind the deck has spent time and money thinking about it, building it and he/she deserves to have fun with it, and we have a challenge to defeat.

I remember the game against marsil, he had Nevyral disk and some blinker attached to it, and he controlled us all for 10 turns untill we were able to defeat it, he destroyed our stuff, attack us every single turn and blink in case of trouble and was really hard to overcome.

If I think the situation from my single point of view I can say that it is an 'unfun' deck, if I had to be 1v1 against him I probably would make it, but in the table we are 4 players at least so we can actually 'control' the worst offender.

All this text wall is to say that, 'fun deck' is subjective, I may consider fun to play control, you can consider fun to play tokens, other to play monogreen land attack, other superfriends, etc.

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Edgar Markov The current updated decklist is here
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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 10:34 am 
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Joined: 2012-Feb-07 4:15 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
There's nothing wrong with having an inevitable win-condition in a control deck. The point is that Felidar is a particularly boring and anti-climactic one. Thankfully, Wizards has been much better about releasing more interactive and interesting cards like it. I'm not particularly fond of these cards, but if your deck can win off Felidar, then it probably can also win off cards like Defiant Bloodlord or Aetherflux Resevoir, or even depending on the deck Drogskol Reaver. These cards provide an incremental advantage that can turn game-winning if left unchecked and also synergize with other cards you might put in the deck. Compare it to Felidar, who is oftentimes a dead card until his big moment, and at that point he's literally "answer this or I win". Aetherflux Resevoir is a particularly good comparison as an example of a much better alternative, for both the enjoyment of the player and the opponents. It allows for more deck-building synergy, it does a better job of testing your skill as a player, it gives a better window for opponents to react to it, and even if it doesn't win you the game it most likely will have had an impact other than "ate a removal spell".

And while you can say all you want that it's irrational, there's the fact that a lot of players just feel like Felidar is a cheap win exploiting a design flaw/poor interaction with the format, not unlike something like Karkaras or Limited Resources. And to be fair, they aren't wrong. Winning a game with Felidar isn't creative or interesting; it's just using a card that whose power level is artificially and substantially increased by the format's rules.

And none of what I am saying is anything against control players. There are possibly hundreds of ways to build a control deck that can still close out a game once they establish dominance. Aggressive generals with a control effect built in like Geth, Lord of the Vault or Dragonlord Ojutai are my personal favorites. One-monster armies like Sharding Sphinx, hate-gargantuans like It That Betrays, planeswalkers with game-winning ultimates, explosive value-plays like Rite of Replication, and plenty of other options. Heck, even if you want to go non-interactive literal "I win" cards, Laboratory Maniac, Darksteel Reactor, and Helix Pinnacle are all far more interesting in my opinion. They take longer to pull off, usually telegraph your win, and are actually the type of cards that you can synergize with your deck, rather than Felidar's "If you don't kill him in a turn I win" shtick.


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 10:55 am 

Joined: 2017-Oct-19 12:02 am
Age: Drake
Uktabi_Kong wrote:
There's nothing wrong with having an inevitable win-condition in a control deck. The point is that Felidar is a particularly boring and anti-climactic one. Thankfully, Wizards has been much better about releasing more interactive and interesting cards like it. I'm not particularly fond of these cards, but if your deck can win off Felidar, then it probably can also win off cards like Defiant Bloodlord or Aetherflux Resevoir,


I really havent playtested it yet so I can't argue against or in favor of it, You mention an 'anticlimatic win' and as I said, I havent won or loose against this card so I cannot argue.

But, the game I won was with Sanguine bond + Venser's journal and about 50 cards in my hand thanks to necropotence.

After I have those pieces the game ended, my opponents just didn't kew about that untill 3 turns, because with 50+ cards in hand they really won't be having any chance of resolving or keeping things (all my rmovals in hand, all the counters, etc) So, its really more anti-climatic the felidar? What is really the difference on droping the cat in that turn and winning in the next upkeep or my actual game winning move that took 3 turns where no one of my opponents was able to stop me.

My thoughts about felidar are this

I can cast it EOT with vedalken orrery with at least 1-2 counter backups (So I need minimun 9 mana in best case scenario), and because I don't use fast mana rocks except for sol ring there is absolute no chance whatsoever to do it before T6 (And I am counting to have orrery and the 2 cheapest counters I use in my hand, so it is a kind of magical Christmas scenario for me, other people may do it T1)

I don't really think the felidar is too good, I mean, I will run Test of endurance (wich I think is way better) and offcourse aetherflux reservoir as you pointed out is great and deserves the slot

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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 11:31 am 
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I'm ambiguous about it (like many of the other posters-)

But I feel as though the context is defined less by what it is- but how it occurs; that defines whether or not it destroys or adds tension to the game.

Point 1- What turn is it cast, is it's condition currently met when it's played? If it happens late, it can be a point of tension while everyone has developed their CA engines- but if it's stalled for, it can feel lame. Early Sovereigns are a different story- they either need to be blown out alright, or they just finish the game before it began. You want the game to reach a crescendo- whether or not Sovereign is your win condition to appease the group.

Point 2- How often does that particular deck win through this method? For all intents, and purposes- if you win through Felidar Sovereign, and Test of Endurance- your deck should have other cool fatties that can dominate the game. If somebody wins through Felidar Sovereign sometimes, but sometimes also pushes out a Serra Avatar that connects, or things like Avacyn, Angel of Hope- then Felidar is simply a factor of the deck.

Point 3- Shortcuts and tutors. IMO, this is the biggest issue with many cards considered problematic in EDH. Your group needs to be able to assess how many tutors each deck should play in a mature way. While most tutors do weaken in higher power-level groups (where you have access to things like drawing half of your deck, or extreme filtration engines,) If it's common practice to tutor the Sovereign, so that you can Flash or Quicksilver Amulet or any other number of tricks- you shrink the window your opponents can reply in significantly; which means that you may need to cut a couple tutors in favor of alternatives. Shortcutting Sovereign is usually fine, but the same principal exists- where reducing the number of ways to cheat it out can lead to the games being more enjoyable. There isn't a shortage of powerful alternatives, either- so you don't have to play below the power curve to do this, just use the slots for different types of cards that puts your deck less on the Sovereign.

Point 4- Antisocial Sovereign. When you set up your Sovereign, are you looking for the best moment to play it, or are you trying to jam it to just win? The decks which use Sovereign tend to get destroyed if they try to protect it, if the playgroup is sufficiently experienced and playing the same kind of power. However, that doesn't stop it from being something that feels oppressive. If Sovereign isn't your only way to finish the game in a timely manner, and only pops up occasionally, and in the best position for it- it's super easy to get passed. But if it's rushed out on an early turn, it's just going to be eyeroll inducing.

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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 12:18 pm 
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I know we are on a tangent...
alexev wrote:
I find the 'fun deck' argument very subjective, because as I said earlier, if I like to play control, then the deck objective will be most likely to get to a point where is safe to make your play with inevitability, and I don't think this needs to be cataloged as 'unfun' at least not if we are talking about a control deck that tries to win at turn 12-15 or even more.


Of course it's subjective. It's supposed to be subjective. One of the principals of the format is that you and your group talk about this very (subjective) topic and find a common ground for "Fun."

Maybe that means you ask that player that is opposed to it, if they can accept a deck where there is no way to tutor Felidar, so it will only appear occasionally. You can enjoy your control deck, and they can enjoy knowing they won't see it every game.

Back on topic:
Does his animosity extend to "player loses the game" (e.g. Vraska the Unseen) and "player can't win the game" (e.g. Angel's Grace)?

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Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-23 12:26 pm 

Joined: 2017-Oct-19 12:02 am
Age: Drake
Treamayne wrote:
I know we are on a tangent...
alexev wrote:
I find the 'fun deck' argument very subjective, because as I said earlier, if I like to play control, then the deck objective will be most likely to get to a point where is safe to make your play with inevitability, and I don't think this needs to be cataloged as 'unfun' at least not if we are talking about a control deck that tries to win at turn 12-15 or even more.


Of course it's subjective. It's supposed to be subjective. One of the principals of the format is that you and your group talk about this very (subjective) topic and find a common ground for "Fun."

Maybe that means you ask that player that is opposed to it, if they can accept a deck where there is no way to tutor Felidar, so it will only appear occasionally. You can enjoy your control deck, and they can enjoy knowing they won't see it every game.

Back on topic:
Does his animosity extend to "player loses the game" (e.g. Vraska the Unseen) and "player can't win the game" (e.g. Angel's Grace)?


Actually the player that suggested banning the felidar played Vraska the Unseen) in his Atraxa's deck

I don't consider her 'unfair' or unfun, but I remember that Atraxa superfriends is really hard to play against

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Playing:
Edgar Markov The current updated decklist is here
Oloro, Ageless ascetic The current updated decklist is here
Yennett, Cryptic Sovereign The current updated decklist is here
K'rrik, son of yawgmoth The current updated decklist is here


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Mar-25 3:25 pm 
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alexev wrote:
I remember that Atraxa superfriends is really hard to play against


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 Post subject: Re: Is felidar sovereign type of cards unfair for you?
AgePosted: 2018-Sep-12 11:22 am 

Joined: 2015-Sep-02 2:49 am
Age: Drake
Location: Connecticut
My experience with Felidar and cards like it is that they're a sucker punch that only works once per deck, or, more accurately, only works if I don't know they're there. I've lost to the Sovereign before, but never twice.


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