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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 1:56 am 
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lol Alright, this has gotten silly.

The difference between Basalt Monolith and Mana Vault, Mana Crypt, and Grim Monolith is a fairly basic one. It doesn't tap for more mana than it costs. It's simple math. Ontop of that, by the time Basalt comes online, let alone the support for Basalt, all of the table's 2 and 3 mana removal is online- and often getting the support for Basalt Monolith online (Clock of Omens, Paradox Engine, Fatestitcher etc.) leaves the player ramping off of Basalt severely vulnerable to Akroma's Vengeance, Vandalblast, Austere Command, Bane of Progress, Back to Nature etcetc- Not even to account for the amount of times that most players simply ignore it, and answer the threats produced.

If you're getting your teeth kicked in by Basalt Monolith, you simply aren't playing with artifact disruption, and that's just a softspot for your deck- at that point, you have to accept that you're probably losing because your opponent has manipulated the variance to create a deterministic advantage, and they aren't just plowing through you because of the power level of their cards- That is what creates memories, that is what creates stories, that is what creates epic struggles. That is WHAT EDH IS ALL ABOUT.

Here, I thought the thread was going to turn into the good reasons to discuss Ashnod's Altar, Phyrexian Altar and Krark-Clan Ironworks, but instead we're discussing the banability of a second-tier mana rock. Are we going to ask to ban Gilded Lotus, Unbender Tine, Worn Powerstone, Thran Dynamo and Mind Stone next? Seriously >.<

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 2:34 am 
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Swmystery wrote:
I believe that you believe this, but I think it's deeply irrational. The number of epic games involving early Sol Rings and Mana Crypts, such as you describe, is quite low- we could argue about how low, but that doesn't much matter. Conversely, the number of games ruined by early Rings and Crypts is quite high

I agree with this assessment of "epic" vs "ruined" -- yet because of the quality of the epic game, I do still feel it's worth those ruined games. The ruined games end quickly and you start again. Maybe 10-15min worth of time.

Swmystery wrote:
the chance of a memorable game coming about through Ring/Crypt specifically is too low.
That's a subjective thing, not objective.

Swmystery wrote:
Even if this were not the case, why is this different from something like Leovold?
Umm really? The "ruined" games by Sol Ring are due to excessive ramping involved (also, note that the things that people object to are not just Sol ring ... but Sol Ring into more ramp!) That aspect drastically speeds up the game to it's conclusion. Leovold only slows things down. That's an incredibly important distinction.
Swmystery wrote:
Yet Leovold is still rightly banned- because the number of games he ruined far outweighed the number of epic games where people beat the odds. The exact same logic applies to Sol Ring and Mana Crypt.

If that were indeed the logic used to ban him -- sure. But I'm betting that's not it, so you can't apply the same logic to declare that Sol Ring should be banned.

Swmystery wrote:
So it's not "your general point about archenemy is wrong because of this specific example", it's "your general point is wrong because what actually happens in this general situation is more like..."

So... your quoting me on the second example still doesn't really hold, as that explanation there doesn't seem to apply to the game that I described.


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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 4:00 am 

Joined: 2013-Jun-23 10:18 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Uktabi_Kong wrote:
I'm sure a T1 Explosive Vegetation in terms of brokenness and inability to fight is not even remotely comparable to "Your maximum hand size is 1 and you only get to draw one card per turn.


It's comparable in the sense that both ruin (for a given value of "ruin") more games than they make epic (the epic nature of archenemy games having been brought up by Carthain as a point in Ring's favour). Quite obviously Leovold's ruining is worse than Ring/Crypt's ruining- I was comparing the type of negative effect they have on a game, not its severity.

Carthain wrote:
Umm really? The "ruined" games by Sol Ring are due to excessive ramping involved (also, note that the things that people object to are not just Sol ring ... but Sol Ring into more ramp!) That aspect drastically speeds up the game to it's conclusion. Leovold only slows things down. That's an incredibly important distinction.


I'm not sure Leovold does "only slow things down". Once people were in the Leovold prison games tended to end pretty fast after that (in my experience), and that prison can be established very fast, as Kong said. People scooping after not drawing answers for a couple of turns cuts a lot of time off a game, right?

Carthain wrote:
If that were indeed the logic used to ban him -- sure. But I'm betting that's not it, so you can't apply the same logic to declare that Sol Ring should be banned.


I'd happily take that bet, especially as the RC are here to confirm or deny it. If I'm wrong, I'm wrong.

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Last edited by Swmystery on 2017-May-06 10:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 4:03 am 
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Uktabi_Kong wrote:
And this is related to a general point I want to make about a line we need to draw in the sand. If it is in fact decided that Sol Ring is a problem (which I'm not sure it is), then it does logically follow that Mana Crypt may also need to get the hammer. Sol Ring is potentially more problematic in the fact that it is cheaper, easier to acquire, and with literally no drawback, like Magic's equivalent of the infamous YGO card Pot of Greed. However, in terms of actual gameplay, Mana Crypt is as bad if not far worse at enabling explosive starts. Probably the worst example I've seen recently is when a crypt plus a forest led to Azusa and two lands, followed next turn by Crucible of Worlds, Misty Rainforest, and Retreat to Kazandu. That play would require something else like a Lotus Petal or Simian Spirit Guide if it were a Sol Ring. So I could understand possibly going from banning Sol Ring to also banning Mana Crypt.


I find this an interesting perspective, but I'd like to contest. Sol Ring and Crypt don't go hand-in-hand, because Crypt is such a severely more powerful card half of the time, but especially on the first couple turns of the game. Where Vault and Grim Monolith (how the hell did Basalt get onto this target list, it's an entirely different animal that functions in specific strategies,) not only provide the same kind of extreme mana acceleration as Sol Ring- but also, using minimal untap support push any deck they're included in, through the development phase of the game at absolutely disgusting rates (outpacing any reasonable amount of disruption or "fair" ramp-) and later, often serve as artifacts which behave like Omnath, Locus of Mana- which wouldn't be a problem (as in the case of Basalt) if they didn't supercharge the development phase of the game, or encourage players to mulligan for one of 4 ring effects to consistently push for explosive starts.

Maybe my "Sol Ring uniqueness" position is silly, but "Vault and Grim are fine" strikes me as something of a tone deaf argument that tries to pretend that these cards are in a vacuum, where they won't be played with the massive swath of effects that specifically enable them to stretch what a player can reasonably do during the first 4 or so turns of a game of EDH- when we know damn well what to expect. These are cards that almost accidentally break the development phase of the game, because they were designed for a game that Magic used to be- where Sol Ring is comparatively simple and weak (3 beats 2.) Sol Ring is a power card, it's abusable, but it just provides a turn of acceleration and then serves like any other multirock. It doesn't exceed the development speed of removal for the price of less than a card and also serve as future mana storage- it just says "here, cast the big dumb stuff, and have a power stone to boot."

Also, what is Leovold doing here? xD Is there really an apt comparison between overly generous mana development cards and hand-breaking combos? Is this going to Standstill and Stasis territory? That's a looong way from Sol Ring city.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 4:29 am 

Joined: 2010-Oct-26 5:52 am
Age: Dragon
Mr Degradation wrote:
lol Alright, this has gotten silly.

The difference between Basalt Monolith and Mana Vault, Mana Crypt, and Grim Monolith is a fairly basic one. It doesn't tap for more mana than it costs. It's simple math. Ontop of that, by the time Basalt comes online, let alone the support for Basalt, all of the table's 2 and 3 mana removal is online- and often getting the support for Basalt Monolith online (Clock of Omens, Paradox Engine, Fatestitcher etc.) leaves the player ramping off of Basalt severely vulnerable to Akroma's Vengeance, Vandalblast, Austere Command, Bane of Progress, Back to Nature etcetc- Not even to account for the amount of times that most players simply ignore it, and answer the threats produced.

If you're getting your teeth kicked in by Basalt Monolith, you simply aren't playing with artifact disruption, and that's just a softspot for your deck- at that point, you have to accept that you're probably losing because your opponent has manipulated the variance to create a deterministic advantage, and they aren't just plowing through you because of the power level of their cards- That is what creates memories, that is what creates stories, that is what creates epic struggles. That is WHAT EDH IS ALL ABOUT.

Here, I thought the thread was going to turn into the good reasons to discuss Ashnod's Altar, Phyrexian Altar and Krark-Clan Ironworks, but instead we're discussing the banability of a second-tier mana rock. Are we going to ask to ban Gilded Lotus, Unbender Tine, Worn Powerstone, Thran Dynamo and Mind Stone next? Seriously >.<

Uktabi_Kong wrote:

This is just nuts. So what, it enters untapped, and you use it, so now you're right back where you were before you played it?

Seven mana T3 really isn't that big of a deal. Especially since once you use 3 of that mana it's gone.





I feel like your missing the point. Having turn 2 basalt isn't about playing a threat with it, it's about the same thing turn 1 mana vault or turn 2 grim is, turning burst mana into stable mana. and doing it very very well. If i've got seven mana turn 2, I'm looking to cast skyshroud claim, fact or fiction for lands, kor cartographer, or sad robot or burnished hart, maybe gilded lotus or whatever else you can find that puts mana/lands in hand or on the table. Basalt monolith's best features are that it taps for 3 mana, because 3 mana is a fairly important number if you're light on lands, and you can use it and then forget about it until you decide you need it again. Even if you just cast it on turn 3, having six mana to cast big money ramp or draw spells to dig you out of a bad position is worth the slot, and the only reason it's not being played all the time is because mana vault is amazing, and grim monolith is better too. I think both of your evaluations of the card's power level just as a mana rock are wildly inaccurate, but everyone values cards differently.

Although to segue to the mana altars since you mentioned them, they are really really busted, I can't say I'd miss them.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 4:46 am 
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Gath Immortal wrote:
I feel like your missing the point. Having turn 2 basalt isn't about playing a threat with it, it's about the same thing turn 1 mana vault or turn 2 grim is, turning burst mana into stable mana. and doing it very very well. If i've got seven mana turn 2, I'm looking to cast skyshroud claim, fact or fiction for lands, kor cartographer, or sad robot or burnished hart, maybe gilded lotus or whatever else you can find that puts mana/lands in hand or on the table. Basalt monolith's best features are that it taps for 3 mana, because 3 mana is a fairly important number if you're light on lands, and you can use it and then forget about it until you decide you need it again. Even if you just cast it on turn 3, having six mana to cast big money ramp or draw spells to dig you out of a bad position is worth the slot, and the only reason it's not being played all the time is because mana vault is amazing, and grim monolith is better too. I think both of your evaluations of the card's power level just as a mana rock are wildly inaccurate, but everyone values cards differently.

Although to segue to the mana altars since you mentioned them, they are really really busted, I can't say I'd miss them.


Again, it's something moot because t2 Basalt doesn't outpace 2 and 3 mana disruption- something that is the bread and butter of well built EDH decks. 6 mana on t3 from ramping on t1 and 2 isn't the same thing as what Vault and Grim do, where you're dropping a 4-5 drop on turn 2, with rocks that are easily supported by other artifacts or spells from any color but B (who don't need it because...) or at the worst case scenario, they just become easy mana storage AFTER the massive acceleration spike, where they've made using 2 and 3 mana answers a severe disadvantage- since using them will often still keep the player relying on them multiple turns behind. Basalt Monolith doesn't create immediate hard acceleration, or put you so significantly far ahead on the turn after that the gap often impacts the game for 7+ turns, if the game persists that long. T3 Strip Mine or coherent removal packages can undo the advantage from a t2 Basalt Monolith, or mellow out Ring acceleration for the table. The same is not true from Vault, Monolith or Crypt.

See also: Doubling Cube- It's sweet, it can be built around- but it doesn't beat top notch disruption on it's own.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 5:22 am 

Joined: 2010-Oct-26 5:52 am
Age: Dragon
Mr Degradation wrote:
Gath Immortal wrote:
I feel like your missing the point. Having turn 2 basalt isn't about playing a threat with it, it's about the same thing turn 1 mana vault or turn 2 grim is, turning burst mana into stable mana. and doing it very very well. If i've got seven mana turn 2, I'm looking to cast skyshroud claim, fact or fiction for lands, kor cartographer, or sad robot or burnished hart, maybe gilded lotus or whatever else you can find that puts mana/lands in hand or on the table. Basalt monolith's best features are that it taps for 3 mana, because 3 mana is a fairly important number if you're light on lands, and you can use it and then forget about it until you decide you need it again. Even if you just cast it on turn 3, having six mana to cast big money ramp or draw spells to dig you out of a bad position is worth the slot, and the only reason it's not being played all the time is because mana vault is amazing, and grim monolith is better too. I think both of your evaluations of the card's power level just as a mana rock are wildly inaccurate, but everyone values cards differently.

Although to segue to the mana altars since you mentioned them, they are really really busted, I can't say I'd miss them.


Again, it's something moot because t2 Basalt doesn't outpace 2 and 3 mana disruption- something that is the bread and butter of well built EDH decks. 6 mana on t3 from ramping on t1 and 2 isn't the same thing as what Vault and Grim do, where you're dropping a 4-5 drop on turn 2, with rocks that are easily supported by other artifacts or spells from any color but B (who don't need it because...) or at the worst case scenario, they just become easy mana storage AFTER the massive acceleration spike, where they've made using 2 and 3 mana answers a severe disadvantage- since using them will often still keep the player relying on them multiple turns behind. Basalt Monolith doesn't create immediate hard acceleration, or put you so significantly far ahead on the turn after that the gap often impacts the game for 7+ turns, if the game persists that long. T3 Strip Mine or coherent removal packages can undo the advantage from a t2 Basalt Monolith, or mellow out Ring acceleration for the table. The same is not true from Vault, Monolith or Crypt.


Your meta must be a lot more competitive than mine, because no one I play with is enough of an asshole to dick someone over on mana that early, a lot of us dont even run strip mine, or use artifact removal on a single mana rock when there are way more dangerous things you can blow up with them.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 6:33 am 
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Gath Immortal wrote:
Mr Degradation wrote:
Gath Immortal wrote:
I feel like your missing the point. Having turn 2 basalt isn't about playing a threat with it, it's about the same thing turn 1 mana vault or turn 2 grim is, turning burst mana into stable mana. and doing it very very well. If i've got seven mana turn 2, I'm looking to cast skyshroud claim, fact or fiction for lands, kor cartographer, or sad robot or burnished hart, maybe gilded lotus or whatever else you can find that puts mana/lands in hand or on the table. Basalt monolith's best features are that it taps for 3 mana, because 3 mana is a fairly important number if you're light on lands, and you can use it and then forget about it until you decide you need it again. Even if you just cast it on turn 3, having six mana to cast big money ramp or draw spells to dig you out of a bad position is worth the slot, and the only reason it's not being played all the time is because mana vault is amazing, and grim monolith is better too. I think both of your evaluations of the card's power level just as a mana rock are wildly inaccurate, but everyone values cards differently.

Although to segue to the mana altars since you mentioned them, they are really really busted, I can't say I'd miss them.


Again, it's something moot because t2 Basalt doesn't outpace 2 and 3 mana disruption- something that is the bread and butter of well built EDH decks. 6 mana on t3 from ramping on t1 and 2 isn't the same thing as what Vault and Grim do, where you're dropping a 4-5 drop on turn 2, with rocks that are easily supported by other artifacts or spells from any color but B (who don't need it because...) or at the worst case scenario, they just become easy mana storage AFTER the massive acceleration spike, where they've made using 2 and 3 mana answers a severe disadvantage- since using them will often still keep the player relying on them multiple turns behind. Basalt Monolith doesn't create immediate hard acceleration, or put you so significantly far ahead on the turn after that the gap often impacts the game for 7+ turns, if the game persists that long. T3 Strip Mine or coherent removal packages can undo the advantage from a t2 Basalt Monolith, or mellow out Ring acceleration for the table. The same is not true from Vault, Monolith or Crypt.


Your meta must be a lot more competitive than mine, because no one I play with is enough of an asshole to dick someone over on mana that early, a lot of us dont even run strip mine, or use artifact removal on a single mana rock when there are way more dangerous things you can blow up with them.


Not atm. Right now I'm meeting with 2 1/2 playgroups (trying to get one larger group established.) One group is pretty competitive, and the other (and a half-ish) are just on a gentleman's agreement not to play Ring, Vault, Crypt, Monolith, or Top- because some of us have played with them too much, and also remember Primeval Titan, Sylvan Primordial, Prophet of Kruphix, and Trade Secrets in Commander... So some of the group would rather play a cuddlier format, and the other guys just don't have access to Vaults and Tops etc..

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-06 9:25 am 
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Mr Degradation wrote:
Maybe my "Sol Ring uniqueness" position is silly, but "Vault and Grim are fine" strikes me as something of a tone deaf argument that tries to pretend that these cards are in a vacuum, where they won't be played with the massive swath of effects that specifically enable them to stretch what a player can reasonably do during the first 4 or so turns of a game of EDH- when we know damn well what to expect.

This is simply the part where you're off. Any powerful card in the format can be busted if you give it proper support within the deck. The point is, Sol Ring (and to a lesser extent Mana Crypt) is played in a vacuum. Every deck on the planet can support Sol Ring, and it is in the vast majority of decks. If it is true that fast mana is ruining games at an unacceptably high rate, Sol Ring would be the biggest culprit, with Mana Crypt being equally as bad in the games it shows up but potentially being saved the hammer due to its high price and rarity.

Vault and Monolith simply aren't in the same category. The other two can be put in virtually any deck with (close to) zero real drawback and give it a potentially dangerous explosive potential. Vault and Monolith simply aren't in the same category. You very intentionally have to put key-type effects and other ways to abuse them in order to make them any more dangerous than your average ritual effect. Cards that are overpowered when you intentionally try to break them are not the cards that the RC tends to ban.

You also mentioned stuff like intentionally mulliganing in order to get them in your opening hand. The vast majority of players who aren't playing purely for victory won't do stuff like that.


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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-13 10:41 am 

Joined: 2016-Aug-15 1:21 pm
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Maluko wrote:
However, I would like to see it banned based on ubiquity. Just look at the data collected on EDHREC: https://edhrec.com/cards/?q=ring-on-it. The card is present in 75% of ALL the decks analyzed by that website. That's 2.5 times more common than the second most frequent card, Lightning Greaves. In a game with 10.000+ cards available, that's just ridiculous.
Quote:

I'm a bit late to the discussion, but as for the argument of banning or not banning Sol Ring goes, this is something I think does make a big difference. I think this specific ban criteria leads to a lot of questions.

Quote:
Problematic Casual Omnipresence. Some cards are so powerful that they become must-includes in decks that can run them and have a strongly negative impact on the games in which they appear, even when not built to optimize their effect. This does not include cards which are part of a specifc two-card combination - there are too many of those available in the format to usefully preclude - but may include cards which have numerous combinations with other commonly-played cards.


-When building an EDH/Commander deck, is Sol Ring considered a must-include card? What clarifies the difference between highly popular and must-include? Who decides how big the available statistics have to be? Do the other fast mana rocks have the same availability as a card that has been reprinted with every Commander set?

-How strongly does an early Sol Ring impact a game? Is it a negative experience for the majority of the play group? How difficult would to be to build a deck around breaking/optimizing Sol Ring? How strong would the deck be? Is it even viable to copy Sol Ring multiple times?

-Can it be said that Sol Ring has 'numerous combinations' with other commonly played cards? Who defines what a combo is? Can any card played off an early Sol Ring be considered a combo? Do mana rocks combo with 'everything'?

-Does Sol Ring meet any other ban criteria?

I don't know how many of those questions have already been asked and answered, but this is just my view of it. Right now, I'm back to revising my Nekusar deck again, and Sol Ring unfortunately is a must-include card in my opinion. It's just better then all the other mana rocks and mana dorks I have access to.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-16 1:11 pm 

Joined: 2014-Jul-26 11:35 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Nekusar is a deck that I would not jump to sol ring first. It probably makes the cut in the end, but the colour intensity of 3 colour decks would encourage me to value signets ahead of sol ring. Honestly I'd rather play pyramid of the pantheon on T1 in nekusar than sol ring.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-16 1:22 pm 

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specter404 wrote:
Nekusar is a deck that I would not jump to sol ring first. It probably makes the cut in the end, but the colour intensity of 3 colour decks would encourage me to value signets ahead of sol ring. Honestly I'd rather play pyramid of the pantheon on T1 in nekusar than sol ring.

If your deck is ridiculously mana intensive and you don't have fetches and shocks, i would still disagree. Sol Ring also casts signets on t1 too, which i find kind of funny.

Pyramid is a pretty bad card though. Even if it's good in your deck due to little mana fixing, compare to Sol Ring, which lets you cast any 2-color 4cmc spell on turn 2 still. If your deck is durdly enough that Pyramid is a good card then i hope your opponents are playing that kind of game too.


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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-16 2:01 pm 

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the only time I dont play Sol Ring in is Animar... or if I'm short a copy.

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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-16 4:28 pm 

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My only deck without Sol Ring is Hermit Druid combo.


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 Post subject: Re: This Year's Sol Ring Thread
AgePosted: 2017-May-16 5:12 pm 

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Mine is 5c Eldrazi because the Eldrazi don't know how to manipulate Sol Rings for mana and, frankly, they don't really care.

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