MTG Commander/Elder Dragon Highlander

Personal EDH Philosophies
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Author:  Wolfsbane706 [ 2018-Oct-15 12:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Personal EDH Philosophies

So besides the philosophies that the Rules Committee put forth, what personal philosophies do you have about EDH and how games should go? Personally, a game you can't really remember or influence in some way isn't much of a game.

Author:  Oraster [ 2018-Oct-15 2:02 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

Some cards and strategies allow for much more interactive games than others. Tasigur, the Golden Fang, for example, can get weaker players involved in the game. If your playgroup can stomach them, a few chaos effects really get the table involved. These cards need to be played in conjunction with goodstuff in order for decks to age well.

Author:  cryogen [ 2018-Oct-15 6:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I build decks that I think will be fun, because my enjoyment is primary (otherwise why play?) I try fo avoid cards and strategies that take the fun away from the rest of the table.

That's pretty much it. You can get away with murder if everyone is having a good time.

Author:  Mr Degradation [ 2018-Oct-15 11:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I feel like fun factor has more to do with the symbiosis of each player assembling their own "song of my people". I don't necessarily think that any strategy or archetype should be excluded; but that such things are counterbalanced more by "how" than "what". IE; I like Control decks, so I tend to look for fatties with disruptive effects built into them (the "Big Ass Flyers" principal) to create "natural pressure" so that the game doesn't have to drag past a point where I obtain an optimal position and a terminal advantage. Doing so doesn't require sacrificing anything in terms of power (there's something to be said for the power of "player removal"-) or efficiency; and it creates high tension gamestates that resolve in entertaining ways.

The same can be applied to high aggression, recursion intensive or Stax decktypes; and when thoughtfully done can be suitably entertaining. If further clarification will help; check out Viperion's signature for appropriate quotes.

Author:  pi [ 2018-Oct-16 12:18 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

One writer, Jason Alt, promotes building your deck to about 75% power level. I really like optimizing decks, however, I realize I could easily steamroll over other players doing that if I am not careful. As such, rather than building to 75% I like to pick a "75% strategy", as in a not commonly used general, or taking a more commonly used general in a different direction. This leads to my decks being at roughly this 75% power level, without sacrificing the optimization I really like.

Beyond this I've always adhered to a few general theories for multiplayer:
- synergy over raw power: it's very rare for me to play cards just because they are good, but they will get in if they synergize with the rest of the deck and you'll have better draws in the late game
- if you're playing with a "gentlemanly" group: skimp a little on the land count as they're bound to not take full advantage of a mana screw
- try to hide as much functionality as possible in lands: mass LD is frowned upon in such "gentlemanly" groups, I really like to have man lands in my decks for example
- aim for the long game: I may not have a strong plan early game, but again counting on "gentlemanly" opponents I may very well get away with that, however you can pretty much count on me having a plan to take over the game if it runs long
- play politics/diplomacy even beyond the current game: also known as influencing the meta game, I will carefully craft a reputation such as that I will come for you if you come for me if I can (discouraging players from just hitting me when they can, supporting "gentlemanly" behavior), I've even gone so far as to let Magic games influence other games played with the same people and vise versa

Though these theories may not look like it, I always try to encourage fun and be a pleasant player to have at the table.

Author:  thaumaturge [ 2018-Oct-16 12:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I'd rather win than lose, but I'd rather lose a fun game than win a boring one.

Author:  Jeyal [ 2018-Oct-17 5:51 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

That is a good question. Also a tough one. I've thought about this for a few days, and I can't seem to come up with a simple answer. Here's the best I can come up with:

"Win, lose, or draw; try to make every game unique."


"In the best games, no one remembers who wins."

Author:  CrazyPierre [ 2018-Oct-18 6:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

Our main group's philo is "Bring what you have and we'll deal."
We had one player show up with a Selvala combo deck, so after one time it worked we just focus-fired him.
Our regular group has one who runs Jokulhaups, Obliterate, Sadistic Sacrament, another on tuned Pope, my randomness, a guy that loves random effects and coin flips.
The varied styles make sure that no one strategy overwhlems? Ramping too much? Lose all your lands or take a Back to Basics.
Game getting clogged up? Thieves' Auction or Warp World.

We don't necessarily "play memorable games" and instead aim for "memorable swings", where the objective is still winning but preferably winnning with a massive steamroll on the entire table where everyone involved is in power-gamer/Timmy ecstasy at the end. We'll also occasionally do super bad plays, like walking into a Mana Drain with an 8-12 mana spell just to see how MD's caster does with his mana.

We're more "Embrace the Chaos, but call Donblas for protections first," and then letting chips fall where they may.

Author:  Sid the Chicken [ 2018-Oct-18 8:37 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I follow the "build casually, play competitively" mindset - I'd rather build a silly deck (I've did coinflip.dec before the Battlebond coinflip guys made it actually somewhat effective and I actually have a tribal fish deck... not Merfolk but literal fish, like Islandfish Jasconius and Hammerhead Shark) and try to win than build a power deck and possibly have it be too easy or wind up in a "who can combo first" arms race.

Also I believe in putting your money where your mouth is - it annoys me to no end when I see people complain about card X, and then run it in every deck that supports it.

Author:  Treamayne [ 2018-Oct-19 10:48 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I define casual (one of MtG's most controversial terms) as:

A meta or environment where players put the "fun" of the group ahead of winning or personal enjoyment.

This, of course, implies that casual is different for every group and meta. However, with that in mind, I (like Sid and many above) build to my personal "casual" then just try to play the deck as well as I can. For me, I avoid "goodstuff" unless it is extremely on-theme (e.g. my only deck with Rite of Replication is my Halfdane Shapeshifter tribal). I also tend to build to tribal themes (~90% of my 40ish decks are tribal - but I haven't done the math yet), which helps avoid "goodstuff" or using the same cards in deck after deck.

In game, I try to practice good threat-recognition. Especially on MTGO there are a lot of newer players, so I tend to announce to the room when a combo-piece drops (which seems to anger the combo players online who prey upon people that don't recognize more obscure combos (e.g. Dovescape and Guile). If one player is significantly behind and I have something to help, I usually do. Sometimes the "help" is self-serving (such as Blaze of Glory to "help" them block), and sometimes it is something as simple as sharing a offering (such as Intellectual Offering) or land-fetch (e.g. Fertilid) their way.

In the end, we are all here to have fun - we all just have to remember other players' fun also matters.

Author:  Thraximundar [ 2019-Apr-29 11:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I have a friend who we’ve played edh with for over a decade. His strategy is to kill us with some large mana win the game combo usually something like hellfire of torment, but he cannot stand games getting drawn out by discarding, or people rushing with creatures. He feels that, “it’s unfun to draw and pass turn” my retort is, “it’s unfun watching you try to put 4 to 5 cards together to get enough mana to win the game and watch you do it for 45+ mins each time”.

Long story short I still play mindslicer and sire of insanity but decided to take out emrakul the promised end because I feel if you play a card you might as well abused it as intended. Cards like worst fears and emrakul allow you to make all player decisions which means if you have the ability between you and your opponents cards to exile their general/commander you can do so and keep it there. Which is far worst then what the tucking a commander. At least when you tuck a general with hinder it’s avaible and you can draw/tutor it.

Idk I don’t think the way people play should be so set in stone which is why I alway play possbility storm in every deck.

Author:  niheloim [ 2019-May-02 5:54 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

I try not to play cards that ruin the game for one player. If it ends the game relatively quickly I don't mind, but when I find a deck isn't allowing all players to have their big moment in the game I tend to not play that deck very often.

I also try to find a pet card or two for each deck. Something off the wall that isn't the most optimal card.

Author:  Isabelle [ 2019-May-20 4:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

For me and for my meta, we want to have fun most of all--and we want everyone to be able to have fun.

Sure, for a little while Chain-Veil Teferi and an Arcanis infinite turns deck were stomping us. (And Zur the Enchanter who tried so hard to be toolbox...)

But when the games were just not fun for the opponents at all, those players disassembled those decks and built others instead. (The cards from Teferi went to Lavinia and to Sai, and Arcanis turned into Jori En.)

We follow the RC's banned list, and we've never had an issue with it. I wept a little tear when my Prophet of Kruphix was banned, but I had only one deck with Simic in it at the time, so I didn't miss it too much. (I mean Tasigur did miss the card, but eventually Tasigur retired, too.)

Author:  Thraximundar [ 2019-May-20 4:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

Right now my meta has a unfun issue.

Mindslaver effects are unfun, protein hulk is unfun, winning(stealing) the game off a big spell is unfun, killing one player at a time is unfun, targeting control players who have no board is unfun, discarding everyone’s hand is unfun....

We don’t play infinite’s, but it really is getting tiresome playing with my old friends. I think it’s more of an issue that one or two of the other people want to win and less of an issue with the cards themselves.

Tbh the best way to interact with the most powerful cards in the format is to take that players next turn so making it “unfun” or “ frowned apon” makes answers for those cards harder to find in my colors being red, black, and blue.

So right now it’s a fight over what is fair or fun we put it.

Had to soft ban protons hulk and emrakul/worst fears from my two list.

Author:  moraff [ 2019-May-20 4:49 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Personal EDH Philosophies

A long time ago I read an article from Sheldon, I don't recall which but these words impacted me hugely:

"Build casual, play competitively."

This was an eye opening moment for me, and I've held to it since. Often times, a causal deck is tying a hand behind my back in new and creative ways.

Such as my Arjun deck doing shuffle wheels, my Animar deck is Kamigawa Spirit Arcane Tribal, and my Lazav Deck is non-creature.

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