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 Post subject: Re: The worst thing to ever happen to EDH...
AgePosted: 2018-Oct-22 1:57 am 
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Joined: 2017-Mar-11 6:43 am
Age: Dragon
Fundamentally, I disagree, OP (welcome to the forums btw :) )

When I started playing EDH, the game was very different- but not something that I can really view with a great sense of nostalgia or rose-colored glasses. We'd begun playing in my home town, because it was a more restrictive ruleset for MtG that had picked up at Armada Games in Clearwater, FL (and many LGS on Florida's nature coast looked fondly on Armada for it's success and notoriety.)

The whole deal, at the time, was that an EDH deck was a collector's item- it took a good of time to assemble one worth playing in the local playgroups, because while the cards certainly weren't expensive in the way they are now; the baseline of how razor sharp your gameplan had to be was very high compared to the type of deck we'd play at FNM. It became clear, very quickly that the opportunity cost of each slot in that 99 card singleton slot was much higher than regular Magic (where a singleton slot is usually reserved for a "do-nothing" that synergizes with the deck's "shell" of playsets, which a player could rely on getting if the game continued long enough.) EDH games were less forgiving, had little/no prize incentive outside of tournaments for cards like Lion's Eye Diamond or other Vintage staples- and was generally treated as an exercise in playing the highest level Magic any group could without the same performance pressures. It was a field to make mistakes, and learn as much about the game in a short period of time as possible.

That environment had benefits, but was fairly exclusionary towards people with relatively little experience, and shallow collections- it was a place to play a few of your absolute favorite cards, and support them with a high power pile of the best effects to overcome building restrictions with redundancy. It might sound idyllic, but you had to be okay with a broader range of gameplans, like decks that would win by dropping an Armageddon while having the most impressive boardstate. For all of the ire Cyclonic Rift has gotten in the last couple years- it wasn't "good enough" when the card was fresh, because policing the table often involved using tools like recursive land-bouncing or similarly frustrating things to keep the game fair.

This isn't to say that I don't think the first three sets of Commander products weren't an absolute disaster in terms of the power level of those Generals, issues with availability, or any other factors- but WotC eventually got a better grip, and put small tools in every set to keep the game honest without denial-focused strategies.

While mistakes were made, the tools available for the format broadened significantly; and the overall growth outweighs the effects of any individual mistakes made during the early growth period. There is reasonable nostalgia; but it's severely outweighed by the reality of what "early" Commander was like (I use parantheses, because in 2010/11; we were still pretty late to the party, as it turned out. This was before product was made for Commander, and Eldrazi were mostly eschewed because the power level of the games played punished goodstuff especially hard.)

That's my take, anyways. We have a better ability to mediate what sort of games we want to play, and a more forgiving scale than once existed. Denial strategies are easier to punish, with greater frequency; and we play our favorite things more often.

niheloim wrote:
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 Post subject: Re: The worst thing to ever happen to EDH...
AgePosted: 2018-Oct-24 12:08 am 

Joined: 2010-Mar-10 1:31 pm
Age: Dragon
I thought the worst thing to ever happen was Cryogen..I mean even Sheldon has said he's way we can't have nice things.... :lol:

onlainari wrote:
trappedslider wrote:
EDIT: so if i somehow manged to get down to 1 life,played Repay in Kind followed by Decree of Annihilation then it owuld be bad evil juju?

That's not how magic works. You can't equate cards and situations linearly like that!

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