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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-07 12:19 pm 
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I'm missing something huge here. Banning a set of cards because they are used in a competitive deck (the kind of deck that the format is NOT catered to supporting) and because some people piloting the deck want to use those cards to try and argue that they should be allowed to cheat?

It seems that banning those cards will solve literally nothing. You have a bunch of people who aren't playing the format as intended by the founders or the banlist, and those people are literally trying to argue that the rules don't work the way they do so they can make their bullshit combo even more powerful than it already is. Players like them will suck the fun out of the game regardless of what the banlist looks like or what the format is.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-07 1:46 pm 
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They will suck the fun out of the game in a random pod, sure. But for those of us who enjoy crazy, cutthroat games who play with like-minded players, those decks are fun as hell to pilot. Not saying that the non-deterministic randomizer combo is not an issue, but don't try to make it out that people enjoying playing the format the way they find to be fun are a cancer on the format.

I don't take Gitrog to the LGS. I take my Angus Mackenzie politics pile. I know the meta at my LGS and have decks to play there. My favorite part of playing at the LGS is busting out weird cards other players may not have seen before (current favorite: Dream Halls). I am not there to combo kill the pod on turn 4. I'm there for fun, interactive and interesting games. But when my best friend is in town, it's on. Spike City. I know what decks to play where and what kind of fun I'm after in each context. Just because there are competitive players who are scumbags doesn't mean we all are. It's a social format and this competitive player has social skills. Don't lump me in with those who don't.

TL;DR: Competitive players are not the problem, anti-social douche canoes are. Stop playing with them.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-07 2:54 pm 
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kirkusjones wrote:
don't try to make it out that people enjoying playing the format the way they find to be fun are a cancer on the format.

Please read my post again. I never said that competitive players as a whole are a problem, especially as I am occasionally in that group myself. The people who are the cancer on the format are those who are blatantly arguing that they should be allowed to cheat. From the perspective of what the rules actually say, judicial clarifications/precedent, and just applying simple logic to the situation, it's an open-and-shut case. Infinite shuffles =/= deck stacking, period. Anyone who is trying to argue otherwise is either:

a.) Ignorant of the rules of Magic
b.) Ignorant of how ^ said rules relate to the rules of probability
c.) Deliberately and dishonestly trying to use slippery logic and verbal trickery to make their deck/strategy more powerful than it already is.

Considering most of said people are playing a high-powered competitive deck, it seems that the number of people in group A should be effectively zero, and group B is probably only slightly more populated.

All of that being said, my point about bringing up the fact that they're playing competitively was largely unrelated to any of that. Regardless of whether or not the infinite shuffle is something that actually works in-game (or the integrity of those arguing that it does), there's still zero reason for it to influence the banning of the offending cards, because the banned list is not catered toward competitive play. It might be a different story if we had a situation where there was a general that happened to, I don't know, turn all Rampant Growth effects into an infinite loop or something. As is, it's an already infinite combo involving half a dozen pieces that only sees any real play at the competitive level, in a format where the banlist is not based on competitive play.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-08 10:13 am 

Joined: 2014-Sep-13 7:28 am
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Uktabi_Kong wrote:
You have a bunch of people who aren't playing the format as intended by the founders or the banlist, and those people are literally trying to argue that the rules don't work the way they do so they can make their bullshit combo even more powerful than it already is.

Many cEDH players are very chill people. If they weren't, then none of the other cEDH players would be chill about allowing Horseman-style combos. It is the very fact they are a good group of people who care about the game and others that even allows Gitrog to be a thing; if you have the loop and your group know they can't stop it, they will concede.


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-08 12:02 pm 

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Sovarius wrote:
Many cEDH players are very chill people. If they weren't, then none of the other cEDH players would be chill about allowing Horseman-style combos. It is the very fact they are a good group of people who care about the game and others that even allows Gitrog to be a thing; if you have the loop and your group know they can't stop it, they will concede.

My understanding is most Gitrog loops are not of the described type. They can be demonstrated and executed a known number of times. Is that not accurate?

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-09 10:29 am 

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The self mill loop with Dakmor and a discard outlet is guaranteed to draw your deck if no one has interaction, and then you can 'cycle' a mana spell like Ritual or Lotus Petal and draw your deck with infinite mana. The way the loop works though, i really don't think is one you can shortcut. I could be wrong though, i'm not 100% sure. But you can't say "I do this 11 times, this is what the game state looks like"; in fact, if you said "22 times" we don't know the number or contents of your graveyard or how many cards you have in your hand at that moment. My real issue with it is that if you have interaction, this takes a ton of labor and time for the Gitrog player to get a state where the person with interaction may wish to intercede.

With Rings + Monolith i can say "Here comes Abrupt Decay/Krosan Grip before you get mana" or "Once you have 20 mana, i cast Krosan Grip on this thing".

With Gitrog, i have no idea what is actually in your graveyard the moment the Kozilek or Gaea's Blessing comes down. I could wish to try to hit 2 things with Faerie Macabre in response to a shuffle trigger, or about half the deck with Rav Trap in response to a shuffle trigger if they were on the bottom. There is an argument for using the grave hate on the Dakmor since that's the whole engine, but if they have a land in their hand they can discard and trigger Gitrog in response and save it, whereas saving the graveyard can only be achieved with a shuffle trigger, which they can potentially dredge into the graveyard before they end up drawing it.

It is at least, not a known number of times, because if you dredge lands with Dakmor you can use the draw trigger to draw a card (then discard Dakmor to start over with +1 card in hand), but if it's 2 non-lands, you must discard Dakmor to trigger Gitrog again. You can theoretically dredge some combo pieces before drawing them or before a shuffle trigger. Or if in your last cards i find your 2 shuffle-trigger cards, you won't have any way to protect them (and at this point we still don't know how many cards you have in hand or which cards are in the graveyard, due to some variance in what dredge (1 or 2 lands equals an extra draw, 2 nonlands won't net a card in hand)) and i could potentially just make you lose the game. Without the shuffle-trigger cards, you can't generate infinite mana and loop your Ritual/Lotus Petal. Actually, if they draw Gaea's Blessing, a discard outlet won't shuffle their library with it because Blessing must be from the library.

You could potentially bait them, once they have a bunch of draw triggers stacked up you can kill some outlet or shuffle engine leaving more draw triggers than there are cards in their deck. They won't expose themselves if you say "We can't shortcut, i have Faerie Macabre and Ravenous Trap in hand" (and subsequently this can take a while to get there). Probably they will resolve their draw triggers slowly, maybe there is some case where they try to start instant speed dredging again like someone attempt to exile Gaea's Blessing in response to it's trigger and the Gitrog player can discard another land to start milling until they hit Koz to save it.

There are no true loops until you reach just Kozilek and another card in your deck, but if you did have interaction you would prevent them from getting there.

The personal issue i have (i will note this applies only to my "competitive self"; i play for money in cEDh pods every week) with allowing it to be shortcut is i don't want to or have to state that i have interaction. If they say "I have Gitrog, a discard outlet, and Dakmor, shortcut to draw my deck and infinite mana and shortcut to casting Praetor's Grasp 240 times" and i say "okay i have Extirpate"; maybe they don't want to try it anymore. If i say "okay you got it" when i don't have interaction, i train them to my mannerisms depending on the contents of my hand. I will say "no, do it" every time i reasonably can whether i have interaction or not, i think. It is deterministic if *no one has interaction* but i'm not going to say i do and just get them to change their mind now knowing the contents of my hand or changing what their plan was.

I will also note that a Gitrog primer i have read and am rereading admits it is a grey area with whether you can shortcut or not. Here's a quote, although it's not all of their thoughts on the situation:

Quote:
At the end of the day, in sanctioned tournaments it's up to the judge to decide whether to give out a slow play warning, as the rules of slow play are extremely vague and could be written dozens of articles about. Due to the combo's deterministic nature however, you are able to demonstrate that you are able to win no matter what unless people are going to try and disrupt you while you draw your deck (and these are usually rare occasions themselves). This is why it has been allowed so far in the community's leagues I've played the deck in.


It just remains that i won't allow a shortcut and there is no way for me and the Gitrog player to shortcut to "this is the card i want in your graveyard, how many cards do you have in your hand at that point".

Quote:
My understanding is most Gitrog loops are not of the described type. They can be demonstrated and executed a known number of times. Is that not accurate?

Specifically to this point, i do think they are considered different because with Gitrog you will continue to add cards to your hand and eventually run out. You only can't draw a card when you dredge 2 nonlands, but if you play any lands in your deck at all then you will hit lands and draw cards each iteration (because you can guarantee your dredge your whole deck to 0 or 1 card thereby guaranteeing you hit Kozilek or Gaea's Blessing plus some lands). With Horseman the problem is potentially nothing changes in a loop and you actually did nothing but shuffle, which is definitely slow play. Gitrog is potentially slow play; i think it depends on a judge. You would have to argue with the judge that you are at least drawing cards, even if the 'loop' takes you 10 minutes to complete.

The final loop, *after* drawing the whole deck and graveyard, results in "i cast dark ritual and redraw it 400 times, boom 400 mana" is an actual loop.

In my estimation, i think drawing a bunch of cards counts as not slow play, but on the other hand i don't think it qualifies for a shortcut. Eggs was banned for being too fucking slow but on the other hand it wasn't *slow play*.

I think either way it isn't nearly as cheaty as Uktabi says it is.


* http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/gitrog-land-combo/


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-09 3:35 pm 
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Again, I don't have a problem with cEDH players generally, nor even the combo/combo deck specifically. I do have a problem with people trying to shortcut something that is very obviously not a shortcut, and especially in the case of OP's original question where the person appeared to be literally arguing that infinite shuffles should just be treated as "let me stack the deck how I want".

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-10 7:23 pm 
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I remember the first time I was at my local store right after the Eldrazi were released and some guy was able to infinitely mill himself and tried to pull this trick until his eldrazi was one of the last 10 cards remaining in his deck. It left such a bad taste in my mouth because they basically forced me to tell them whether I had interaction or not. It's not a fair position to put players who are trying to run answers in their decks. If you say "yes," they know to try and play around it, if you say "no, but play it out anyway" then they complain to high heaven that it's basically guaranteed to happen...

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-11 7:33 am 
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The internet ate my long answer, so here's the short version:

What is the best use of your time at the LGS? Is it arguing theoretical probability with someone whose mind you probably will not change or would that time and energy be better spent switching pods, shuffling up and playing a new game?

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-11 8:50 am 
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Switching pods is not always an option.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-11 9:02 am 
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When I sit down at a table of randoms at my local store there is an agreed sentiment that we are all playing a game of Magic. The best way to address it is for that player to ask the table before the game even starts if everone wants to play “Magic” or “Magic*”. I don’t want to be forced into an awkward situation midway through the game. Some people love playing “Magic” and others like “Magic*”, but everyone has to agree which one they are playing before the game starts.

It works the same for extra free mulligans or people who proxy, they always should inform/ask the table if it’s acceptable or not before they do anything. Couldn’t someone feel a bit offput when all the other players are using 100% real decks, but one guy wins off a proxied card. Meanwhile the whole table spent the time/money building 100% real decks only to lose to some player who proxied a card and is only telling you as it resolves.

For the record I have no problems playing “Magic*”, but there has to be consensus before the game about what that “*” means. If there isn’t consensus, then yeah find another group and avoid that bad taste in your mouth, no harm done(if possible).

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-11 10:06 am 
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Viperion wrote:
Switching pods is not always an option.


At which point it's time to employ the skills necessary to navigate the social format, have the discussion or argument and then choose how you deal with the consequences that arise.

What got eaten from my previous post was a situation from a few weeks ago that I was a part of. 4 man pod, we're down to three players. One guy is playing an Inalla trigger fest. After three turn cycles of watching this guy slowly build toward a win during his ten minute turns, myself and the other remaining player concede and start packing up to go to another game. Before we head off, I compliment the Inalla player on the synergy and redundancies built into his deck, but explain it's not fun for us to watch him resolve triggers for ten minutes, even when we have interactions. Yes, I still moved pods, but I took the time to explain in a reasonable way why I did so. I'm not saying it'll always go well. You'll play your fair share of "Find the Asshole at the LGS", but others will start to take notice. The RC shouldn't have to create or change rules or ban cards because people don't know how to talk to each other. I think Bruticus did a nice job of addressing that.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Feb-19 6:27 am 
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So this thread started on the premise that it's arrogant(?) or foolish to use clear communication with a playgroup about doing something bonkers. Honestly, all that's needed is to ask said person to demonstrate through gameplay. I used to play Beacon of Tomorrows, because it's about as fair as an extra turn card can get- and it pushes the game away from stalling tactics. At a certain point in the game, I would have to demonstrate my ability to cast a Beacon, find it, and force it through on my first extra turn. In this example, it would have been absolutely rude not to mention that I've taken 2 extra turns, with addition card filtration available to find and play the beacon once more.

Most of the argument here seems to be in a pretty similar vain. It isn't about kingmaking yourself before the game actually ends- if you can close to infinite, it's just polite to demonstrate it, and then tastefully show "all these", without the "Had all deez" attitude. Most people like shuffling up and getting another game in.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Mar-03 9:34 am 

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I haven't got a lot to add to the overall discussion that wasn't covered on the first page.

What I do want to add is that "Approaches 100% probability" and "is guaranteed" are not the same thing. There will always be a non-zero chance that they miss.

Unless the person can also prove that time is infinite and that they will live long enough to complete the require infinite iterations, then they can't even get to the point of attempting the theoretical "approaches 100%".

If they can prove that time is infinite and they will live forever then please let us know what it's like playing against Einstein's mind downloaded into a futuristic cyborg.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Probability as Win Condition
AgePosted: 2019-Mar-03 1:26 pm 
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specter404 wrote:
What I do want to add is that "Approaches 100% probability" and "is guaranteed" are not the same thing. There will always be a non-zero chance that they miss.

This has been covered ad infinitum and is realistically pointless. There's a non-zero chance that you win the lottery tomorrow (assuming you play it) but you don't quit your job in anticipation, do you?

specter404 wrote:
Unless the person can also prove that time is infinite and that they will live long enough to complete the require infinite iterations, then they can't even get to the point of attempting the theoretical "approaches 100%".

The same logic applies to repeating a legal loop 20 billion times. Playing out any legal combo manually is a time-suck, which is the whole reason we short-cut in the first place. And before you cry "You don't need to do a huge number of loops to win/gain enough life/etc", I have seen some non-infinite shenannigans do some truly ridiculous amounts of damage in my time, so there are definitely times when having 2 billion life is a good idea, simply as extra surety.

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