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Author Topic: Tournament Highlander is dying slowly...    (Read 22370 times)
MMD
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« on: 30-07-2012, 02:19:23 PM »

I have the feeling that tournament Highlander is slowly and silently dying, at least here in Germany and I would like to discuss this situation.

1.)   The attendance of the smaller regional tournaments is decreasing
2.)   Nearly no content on Magicplayer.org (or other international sources)
3.)   Very limited activity in the international forum of magicplayer.org (and the German one is now closed due to no activity!)
4.)   no council activities (to my understanding they just supervise the banned list which is IMO not enough)
5.)   the online highlander league is not as active as in former days
6.)   EDH 1on1 community is growing (and I think that some of them are potential “Highlanders”)

The only active Germany forum is http://www.mtg-forum.de/forum/221-highlander/ and most of the content there is either Commander or Fun-Highlander Multiplayer. There is just Tabrys Youtube videos in the weekly block on www.magicuniverse.de which keeps the flag flying (Thanks Tabrys!)

Do you have the same feeling/experience?
What is the situation in the other “Highlander Countries”?
What can be done to improve this situation?

These could be viable approaches:

a)   All highlander tournament players should focus on one international forum to post content in.
b)   One European Highlander Championship per year which must be in a central and interesting area for all active communities. This Championship should be supported/feeded by local/regional trials. Price structure must be interesting to travel long distances and there should be other interesting things to do in addition to the Highlander tournament (e.g. Main Legacy or  PTQ tournament, interesting sightseeing opportunities etc.)

Thanks for sharing your thoughts
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Kristian
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« Reply #1 on: 30-07-2012, 03:34:45 PM »

The card pool has changed alot over the years. Back in the day when I found the format and decided to build decks based on it and subsequently got my friends to play too, the meta was very different. Today aggrodecks are, in my opinion, too dominating and consistent to allow the diversity I need in a format to keep it interesting and thus I've slowly transitioned into EDH and a few of my friends are doing that too.

-Kristian
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Mir
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« Reply #2 on: 30-07-2012, 08:04:07 PM »

Year ago when Wizards adopted the EDH and release of the "Commander" products caused this. Each pack contained new oversized and decently powered generals. Our small playgroup accepted the challenge by building decks legal for both formats, but since there are only three remained with such deck.

We mainly play commander now and convincing them to play Highlander is bit hard. Some of them are not willing to build up such deck. They cannot do it without leading theme of commander, or they wont give up of some cards such as Sol Ring.

Also the reason why I called the such tournament now.

Things changed after some time when Wizards updated their support for "Singleton 100". Mainly same format as Highlander with only few differences in banlist. This format became part of weekly schedule in local MTG club and german Highlander was abandoned.

What I do against it:
I am trying to promote german Highlander in two separate playgroups before the tournament. However deckbuilding in such formats ends in white-red agro decks which are able to kill within 4-6th turn. Even recent unbanning of Trinisphere did not helped to it.

Partially I see as a problem that most players follow archetypal decks based on Type 2, Modern or in best case the Legacy. Banning or unbanning can solve parts of some problems, but I believe that tournaments have also to promote cards with strong power level especially those cards which have been forgotten by players. This is one of the reasons why i added Leeches, Reset and Concordant crossroads to the price list. Those cards have its potential, but people are not even thinking about them.

Mostly players buy, sells and trade cards while they cardpool is quite limited to cards of some power level. I have decided to build a collection of cards first and then to build highlander deck. My current cardpool contains more than 1500 different cards and its quite easy to pick and add or remove them from deck.
« Last Edit: 30-07-2012, 08:06:50 PM by Mir » Logged
Doks
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« Reply #3 on: 30-07-2012, 10:33:38 PM »

Good topic, I will thank you for opening it right after I explained my thoughts.


From my experience, the people that play serious competitive traditional highlander (read: not that commander crap...) are by far the "older" ones of the magic community(I personally can't think of a handful of people that are underage and seriously spent time for traditional highlander magic).

Unfortunately, all these 20+ year old people are either students or just on their way into a job which means they don't have the capabilities & resources to constantly participate in tournaments (because of final exams, academic dissertation, semester abroad).
Some of them already have children or a well paid job that requires work on weekends etc.

I for myself didn't participate in a tournament (usually Germany's Dülmen and/or Iserlohn) for more than half a year (even though I really, really wanted but I just couldn't affort to free up the time) because of things like that. Jobbing, studies, new & old relationships usually have priority.


But even before that I could notice a decline of players. In the middle of 2011, Germany's Dülmen was already missing too many players to make a Highlander event worthwhile for the tournament organiser (Trader online). Now, Highlander format is not offered anymore.

Only hope left was Iserlohn that now moves to Dortmund (which is pretty good for me), but I'm not sure if the new organisers will keep it for long. I really hope so, though.


In addition, there are more format related things that keep the declince going.

Powercreep level. Wizard pushes creatures' power over the top. "Play creatures yourself or die" is the motto (maybe with the exception of Oath decks, but some of them run a little 2/1 flashback human wizard themselves because it's just too powerful to not have it even though oathing into it might suck from time to time). Classic draw-go is not viable and combo often too inconsistent (or it's creature based and can beat the enemy down if needed, but no pure combo anymore).

But I still think something can be done about it via unbanning some heavy control (having E. Tutor on the unban watchlist is a big step into the right direction IMO).


Wizard's pushing Modern / Legacy format for the ones aiming to play competetively and if you want to have fun, then Commander is the choice to go (just because it gets so heavily promoted by Wizards and little kids seem to get attracted by the idea of summoning an uber mighty General that crushes their opponent's in their imagination).

And to make it even worse, Commander is multiplayer based which takes a lot of competitiveness from the singleton idea because you can now play a ton of CC6+ cards without getting punished (everybody and his / her mother runs 5+ wrath effects) and strategic diplomatic behaviour between the players matters a lot.


Last but not least, money makes or breaks a new highlander player. Many people don't want to spent hundreds or thousands of dollars on dual lands and mana drains (I can understand this though), just to play a DCI irrelevant format. For me, it was much easier to enter the format because I played Legacy for several years.

I had enough of Legacy because it was always the same (5-6 different decks to beat and some random tier two decks) and it has proven to be still be this until now (UW Miracles, Stoneblade, Maverick, Delver, Reanimator and Sneak & Tell are the current DTB in Legacy right now iirc and that proves my point). I wanted something more diverse but still competitive so Highlander magic was perfect for me, so I liquidized my Legacy pool and got me some nice highlander foil stuff I enjoy playing up to now.

In 2006 and earlier, you could have that near mint german limited Tundra for 30 Euro whereas it now costs five times that much at least. And paying three digit sums for a simple revised whiteboarded U-Sea doesn't make it easier for newer players.
 

I still spend several hours per week deckbuilding & theorycrafting about our traditional highlander format even though I didn't play a single tournament during the last 6 months or so (read above) and I believe that there are many more "sleeping players" like me. Just look at last years highlander german nationals tournament in Iserlohn: almost 100 of players from all over the republic being my best experience so far with this format.

The format is definetely not dead yet, it's just too focused on regions which is the 4th reason for the decline of players. I have no idea what I am going to do if the new Dortmund doesn't offer Highlander tournaments anymore.

I am studying in Osnabrück in Lower Saxony (part of Germany for those who don't know) and there is nothing traditional highlander related. I reapeat: NOTHING. In the game stores they have small groups of competitive legacy players and the rest of the customers are little kids that play commander.

No one wants to play more than 1 game against my competitive Highlander because they think it's too serious and "tryhard" (I have currently revived some UWG Oath version inspired by your 2nd place at HL GP 7), so my whole time at these game stores is spent on trading the new highlander viable cards in foil to add to my cardpool.

It's not even close to the good old times in 2005 at Dortmund's Auenland where every T2 / Legacy player had an almost fully pimped Highlander deck with him because it was just so popular at that time.


Well, for those that don't want to read the whole wall of text (a.k.a. tl;dr) here comes the summary.

Reasons to see less and less german highlander players.

1. Traditional highlander community pretty mature having less and less time.
2. Creatures' powerlevel is counterproductive to the format's deck variety.
3. Wizards pushes T2/Modern/Legacy for competitive players and now has EDH for casual players (read: HL lost its play niche).
4. Acquiring a basic & sufficient card pool for highlander decks became unbelievably expensive if you start from zero.

All this is creates a snowball effect that makes the situation worse and worse.

What to do?

I have no real solution in my mind yet. However, if we can keep the very big events going (national championships, Grand Prix, certain extraordinary events by certain sponsors like MKM etc.) and people actively join what's going on in the community (starts with active forum and tournament participation), I am pretty sure that we can still have a lot of fun with our beloved format.


Cheers.
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Tabris
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« Reply #4 on: 30-07-2012, 10:41:59 PM »

Serious business. I want to ask you Björn, what you think the council could do to increase the playerbase?
I personaly got a lot of feedback about my column on magic universe and mainly people are thanking me for doing this and
even start playing highlander on cockatrice because of this. Another question is how to get the "lost" players to commander back and if its even possible
to do so. A lot of T2 players here in berlin have "fun" highlander but are not willing to improve their decks to a certain competitive level (at the same time they play each week their fnms and go to Type 2 grand prixs and stuff). So they mainly see this format as a casual one.
Planet MTG, the biggest german Magic site declined my column with the comment it is too casual for their readership (which is bullshit...my games have a much higher level then most Legacy tournament play I am seeing around here) but yeah, many people dont see this format as serious as we do


So what to do. The attendence in my local scene is alos decreasing but for the summer months its pretty usual...

Maybe the forum need some work so do the blog (which I cant run by myself speaking contentwise) to make it easier to access for new people.

I would say the online player base is increasing a lot and the last mkm tournament in berlin showed that some competitive players are still out there (speaking about north- and east- germany)but yeah I hear what you are saying..


+ the reasons mentioned by Doks Smiley
« Last Edit: 30-07-2012, 10:46:57 PM by Tabris » Logged
Mir
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« Reply #5 on: 30-07-2012, 11:31:31 PM »

Focus on some single cards for a while:

Commander Tower
This card is not banned in any formats, but its useless in other than EDH. Currently I dont know any other land which produces any color of mana without any drawback... This makes building of EDH much cheaper than Highlander.

Teferi's Isle
A "Bad card"? Definitely considered like this by many players. They could not even imagine why to play it. Took me some time to create infinite mana combo around it.

I have decided to collect cards - all even the bad ones and spent a lot of time by analyzing of many possibilities. Building blue monocolor - the hard way. Each play with the same blue deck was a completely new discovery of new unseen potential. Building up agro deck and all possibilities are known within few games... This is how I play it and why its still fun for me. Bigger card pool - more possibilities. And thats how I try to improve my play.

There are ways how to punish creature based decks. Such as Meekstone, Trinisphere - but you barely see them ...

There is a big gap between fresh created deck, and deck which has been tuned up. People usually dont want to improve their strategy or play, but they want cards with higher power level. Also many co-players are encouraging them in this way.

Blogs, articles, analysis of cards just as Wizards do for some formats might help to new players find alternate ways. Mostly it is simple. Take one card which has been refused by Type 2 community, mention some possibilities and examples how to use it more effectively as it looks on the first sight.

Question is whether its possible to build up good highlander deck without spending a fortune... I believe that its possible, but people need to be told about it.
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« Reply #6 on: 31-07-2012, 01:36:27 PM »

I don't have any new thought that were not already mentioned (thanks @ MMD (for the topic) and Doks (your points on the topic)) but I really want to put emphasis on the point of HL players becoming "old".

A subjective example: The last tournament I attended was the MKM tournament. I cannot recall seeing any player being younger than at least 20 but several players being 30 of age. -> The consequences are listed in Doks's post.

Maybe the main problem of tournament HL is that there are not enough die hard tournament players (I mean really those that play just to win = spikes). These people who are willing to travel quite far to play on every tournament they feel worth to be grinded out (my assumption). Without this kind of players every local HL scene remains separated from one another. On one hand there is no real appeal for such player in this format (not DCI sanctioned maybe too bad prices(?), what do I know). On the other hand the "open for all" in HL spirit allowing cards form sets that are not playable in DCI sanctioned formats is one of the great advantages of this format but at the same time makes it a casual format by definition.
I fear with a casual format you'll not be able to tempt "spikes" to "waste their time" on a format where you "can make no money" and don't get planeswalker points. So it seems we'll have to live with the local character of the HL tournament scene.
As much as I approve the initiative by Mir to advertise for an european HL tournament (your German in the other forum wasn't so bad  Wink ), I doubt that it will change the status quo (=casual format). There are three people I often play with that have tournament capable HL decks and they are really eager to play on a big tournament but at the same time will not travel some 100km to the next tournament (not even out of the city at all). If that is the case in many playgroups... local scene.

Speaking about card prices and the casual character of HL... in my opinion that's the one great advantage of HL that you're able to play a eternal format without having to pay incredible amounts of money to build a deck (putting aside red aggro - that exists in every format I suppose...) because you can play cards from world championsship decks, collector's edition and international edition. You have access to very strong cards for a price not nearly as high as in legacy. (The singleton nature of the decks add to that, too.)

Maybe the price may still frighten players with a very restricted budget but it's not as bad as in legacy (not speaking about vintage...). I don't visit any legacy events at all - how is the "age structure" over there? The same as in HL? Age 20+? That might be an interesting point to know in order to find out whether the low player count is a problem due to card prices.

The support by WotC is helpful as we have seen by the example of EDH / Commander (my godness, what a boring format!). Without really knowing it, I state that legacy is confronted with the same ignorance by WotC (Mental Misstep print and immediate ban) but the legacy scene is a lot larger than HL.
Commander is now taken care about by WotC in card and edition design, because they earn money with the format (directly). More support from Wizards -> higher popularity -> better publicity -> more players. Seems logical to me (I still might be wrong).

Solutions... good question. Hmm what are the tools at hand? The banlist, some forums, Tabris's weekly highlander videos,... what else? Maybe somebody comes across the brilliant idea but that's not me at the moment. In general there are too few people having the will, the time and the passion to advertise the whole format in a way Tabris does. Again, that might be due to the average age of "highlanders".
« Last Edit: 31-07-2012, 04:19:42 PM by carte_blanche » Logged
MMD
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« Reply #7 on: 31-07-2012, 05:07:44 PM »

@ Kirstian: Have you moved to multiplayer and therefore casual EDH or 1on1 EDH? In case you still play 1on1 but on Commander rules I would like to understand what is your motivation. To my understanding Highlander is clearly the most balanced, diversified and competitive 1on1 100/1 format. Official Commander rules allow a lot of unbalanced cards which makes it nearly impossible to play 1on1 (e.g. Sol Ring & Mana Crypt but also cards like Necropotence or Sylvan Library). Even if you play on modified Commander rules like French EDH you do not gain any advantages to Highlander as the Tier 1 decks are IMHO limited to a handful of Generals and the Commander centered strategy make the game state situations recurring and boring (e.g. 4th turn eot Wydwen…).

@ Mir: I really appreciate your activities for the format. If there would be more people showing the same interest and activity I wouldn’t have to worry like I do. I really wish that you have success with your tournament and that you are able to convince some of the EDH players to play a more competitive 100/1 format but also to find some new guys from other competitive formats to have a good time with Highlander.

I also think that Wizards strategy to push Commander but also eternal formats with Legacy and Modern narrows the niche for Highlander even more.

But I don’t think that that promoting older unknown single cards will work but I agree that promoting unusual decks can improve the awareness how diverse Highlander really is. There are a lot of good decks out there which are probably not Tier1 put can win tournaments in the hands of good pilots and bringing it to the right metagame. Piloting the right Tier2 deck is sometimes better than playing coin flip matchups all day long.

Sure we see a lot of multicolour aggro and goodstuff in the T8s but there are also other decks in the lists (e.g. Angry Hermit, Reanimator, RampControl, etc.). IMO the T8 is that boring because there is not enough development and evolution in our format. It is easy for everyone to bring a 3-5C goodstuff deck to the tournament as everybody knows it will work. I decided that I will stop playing mainstream decks and bring new decks to future tournaments to give some fresh input to the community. I do this not only to demonstrate but also because I really think that there are some hidden gems out there which could influence the current metagame. If some of the better players will also start to bring new creations (or revised oldies) and T8 with them, other people will follow. Also perhaps some of the casual players will join, when they see that uncommon decks can win on a tournament level.

@ Doks: Thanks for your detailed explanation about your personal situation which I can copy paste for myself. I can also confirm most of your points. It seems this is the standard situation for many other Highlander players as well. I really agree on the “old player” and the Legacy/Commander problem. The creature problem is IMO not Highlander specific and concerns nearly all formats nowadays. Also the price issue might be a small problem for some newbie’s but I think most of the Highlanders enter the format with a sufficient card pool.

Perhaps unbanning certain Control/Combo cards could help with the aggro/good stuff problem but I think that even with the current bannings you can build competitive Tier 2 decks which can win tournaments.
I could be “enough” IF some of the experienced/good players would show that it is possible to win with them. In Iserlohn for example we had Angry Hermit in the last two T3 and in the beginning of this year we had Staxx in the T3 a couple of times, even winning the tournament 1-2 times. You cannot find the lists because the players declined to publish their list, don’t understand the reason behind by myself…

@ Tabris: I think that competitive content and a tournament organisation can improve the current situation. IMO Highlander has to prove that it is a competitive format to stay alive. Your weekly column is really a centrepiece of the current Highlander content and I can imagine that this is a lot of work to do, so I do not want to complain about your personal activities which I really appreciate. There is also Vazdru´s Online League Administration but are there any other activities from the rest of the council? I understand the council’s duty not only as “The Banhammers” but also to moderate, promote, organize and manage the format which is IMO necessary to keep the format alive or even create growth. Certainly it’s not only the council’s duty and certainly not possible without a community but the council should at least lead the way and I don’t see that at the moment beside your column. Is there any mentionable communication between the council members? I ask that because I do not see a lot of posts here on the board. Even if the council board is a closed area I can see the “traffic” and there is non except a few posts during the banning period. I can understand that doing this is time consuming but not that much if the required “work” is shared equally and asking for help in the community. Just my proposal: Each council member is responsible for one ressort (e.g. tournament organization, forum administrator/moderator, weekly blog, statistic, reports, etc.) and has to manage it actively. It sound a little exaggerated and inappropriate for a hobby niche format but basic activity and organisation could help here.

I think if we prove that Highlander is a competitive format we can convince some of the Legacy Oldies which decline to pay these prices but also some of the young Commanders which understood that 1on1 Commander is bull%$§”.

If the online player base is really increasing (also as a result of your column) I see a good trend and a possibility that some of those online players will play on a HLGP or even smaller, local HL tournaments in future. Perhaps we should concentrate on Highlander online magic for daily magic, a couple of local trials and 1-2 big tournaments a year but keep the content high, so that every Highlander “feels” that this format is alive.
I personally think that there is a place for Highlander in the world of Magic. But there must be a certain effort to keep this format alive. I decided that I will put more content into this forum in future and use some uncommon but competitive decks (hopefully into the lists) to be part of that community. If I find out that it was not enough I think I have to accept that even the die hard spikes have to die some day.
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I also have a huge amount of chinese and japanese foil HL staples not listed yet,  which I would like to downgrade to english foil. Just let me know!
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« Reply #8 on: 31-07-2012, 08:32:32 PM »

Hi,
 I also feel, that something went wrong with german HL. Our local comunity still holds up, since the core of the community meet every week. The core form about one third of the whole comunity, which is rather big portion. The rest of comunity comes from time to time to every month tournament we organise to ourselves. Tournament attendance is quite stable, but declining over the few past years. There is no support from any local playground or magic retailer. Irregularly there is a pure HL article on biggest website devoted to Magic in Czech Republic (once per two months). So it is quite hard to gain new players and attract them to play HL and not EDH.
 
 I feel EDH lurks from every corner of todays biggest magic websites. Forums, new cards discusions, articles are very much EDH oriented. Even cube is getting more spotlight today then HL. There is almost not a single word about german HL. The format is almost invisible to biggest sites including wizards. But they adopted EDH, so it is no wonder. Without articles, discusions, informational stream towards the players base, there is no chance for german HL to keep up. Even our www.magicplayer.org forum is almost dead. There is no new content to read or discuss every day. Since the forum is not attractive for the current comunity, it can hardly be attractive to new players.
 
 The social aspects metitoned above are 100% true. Average age of our comunity is probably slightly under 30. Also the format entry cost is quite large. Same holds for legacy, but legacy is obviously more attractive format since there is ton of content online and many tournaments every week.
 
 The worst investment in the world of magic is into format which one cannot play often or not at all. I see good example with real life allcommon legacy format. Once there were regular tournaments and the comunity was fine. But after the tournament organiser got bankrupted format disappeared, since his tournaments and his playground were like a glue, that holded the comunity together. Once the glue got lost the decks gathers just dust.
 
 I hope our format - german HL - will never become "a bad time investment". ^^^
 
 Ball.Lightning

P.S: One idea: our comunity uses FB to discuss common stuff and organise itself. Maybee this medium could do some good here. I propose this even if I am not fan of FB. It just works for us..
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« Reply #9 on: 31-07-2012, 10:18:51 PM »

Today I was playing against Tier1 EDH deck with Zur the Enchanter as general. Contained cards like Necropotence, Contamination. When I asked owner of the deck to build up Highlander deck he responed that it would be too expensive. I bet his EDH deck was more expensive as mine highlander deck currently is.

I dont believe that Highlander is that expensive as people think. But "Win 5 duals" tournaments is part of the problem.

The expensiveness is first myth we have to bust. Second is surely that people believe that its not possible to build up working combo decks, because its "singleton". I was looking for "Fog" effects in blue-white color combination and i have found 6 almost identical cards. third is "this wont work since you are dead by 4th turn". EDH has legal cards like Entomb, LED, Mana Crypt, Sol Ring and so on which fuel many fast tier 1 decks. They are actively used, and in EDH the combo solution is quite successfully used - mostly tied with the general, but not always. But even if i play against players with combos like Entomb, animate dead, Worldgorger dragon, which is legal in EDH this wont work on every game.

What inspired me much was an article about EDH deck with Azami as general, with full description how it works. I was really amazed at it, since it utilized a lot of cards. It had everything i was looking for. Decent power level, flavor based on blue wizards. I could build up a blind copy of it, but I rather chosen to do it my way.

The serious fun with Highlander is the deckbuilding. But honestly... are there any deckbuilding sessions? From time to time we meet with a bunch of cards and try to improve our decks. And its fun...
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« Reply #10 on: 01-08-2012, 12:44:44 AM »

@ Kirstian: Have you moved to multiplayer and therefore casual EDH or 1on1 EDH? In case you still play 1on1 but on Commander rules I would like to understand what is your motivation. To my understanding Highlander is clearly the most balanced, diversified and competitive 1on1 100/1 format. Official Commander rules allow a lot of unbalanced cards which makes it nearly impossible to play 1on1 (e.g. Sol Ring & Mana Crypt but also cards like Necropotence or Sylvan Library). Even if you play on modified Commander rules like French EDH you do not gain any advantages to Highlander as the Tier 1 decks are IMHO limited to a handful of Generals and the Commander centered strategy make the game state situations recurring and boring (e.g. 4th turn eot Wydwen…).
The casual mp EDH. I simply got tired of everybody playing aggro/goodstuff. I loved the format before the invasion of spells on legs. By the way Sol Ring and friends are banned in 1v1 french as far as I know.
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MMD
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« Reply #11 on: 01-08-2012, 08:59:52 AM »

@ Mir: Feel free to start a deckbuilding topic in this forum. I will paticipate. Wink I also decided, that I will start own deckbuilding/discussion topics by myself.

@ Kristian: Yes they are banned. Thats why I mentioned this format as an "improved" one.
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I also have a huge amount of chinese and japanese foil HL staples not listed yet,  which I would like to downgrade to english foil. Just let me know!
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« Reply #12 on: 01-08-2012, 10:42:32 AM »


As a native of the wonderful city of Hamburg I would like to share my experience regarding Highlander:
I organized a monthly tournament in Hamburg and the attendance was pretty good. We always had 8 or more players and broke 20 two times I believe. We also had people joining our tournament from Kiel and Rostock highlighting that people are willing to travel a bit for a fun highlander tournament.
Sadly the store where we used to play closed down in May and we do not have a hosting site right now. There is some talk about a new store opening in Hamburg. In the remaining stores in Hamburg it has not been able to establish a time slot for us. Since the player base is somehwat older the tournament has to be on the weekend but those time slots are taken right now in the other stores...

For the MKM tournament in Berlin we also had one car that only went there to play Highlander, one car for Legacy plus Highlander and of course also players who just went for Legacy and/or standard. I believe as long as the commute stays below 4 hours the Hamburg players will join tournaments if they advertised on time (~2 to 3 months ahead) so people can keep that weekend free of other duties and arrange travel with fellow players. From my perspective the Hamburg Highlander szene will be vibrant again, once we are able to find a new playsite.


Things that I believe need to change/improvements possible:

The web appearance of Highlander magic has to be reworked. There is a defunct german forum, the .info page, this forum the blog and the connection of those offers is terrible. Also, this forum has way too many sub forums regarding traffic on this board. The internet presentation of our beloved format is unfitting!

We should organize 8 man tournaments on cockatrice on a monthly/14day/weekly rhythm! Also using IRC as communication device for online gaming is unbearable. I only got IRC for the Leage play this winter/spring and only left my IRC number on this very board. I recieve russian spam via IRC on a weekly basis now. Why do I have to use this shitty program which does not even support voice over IP? I sure liked IRC 2000-2004 but today there is a better option with Skype which I use for online communication.

It would be nice to have incentives for tournament organizers so that hopefully new local tournament series will be established at the grassroots level to grow and foster our community. Incentives could be funded by the players of the yearly Highlander GP (like one or two euros per players to give free entry for grassroot tournament organizers) or by willing sponsors or so. I think it not so much the lack of players in most regions but rather a lack of grass root tournaments because Yu GI and other Magic formats draw bigger crowds and are therefore more profitable which leads to Highlander tournaments depending a lot more on input from the player base itself to create formats. Which we should be able to organize!




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so_not
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« Reply #13 on: 01-08-2012, 12:54:01 PM »

Great topic, thanks for it! Couple points I'd like to mention:

Social media is the word of the day so promoting the format through facebook, twitter, google+ and the likes could have an impact. Sharing of information, advertising of articles, tuning decklists and reporting tournament results and other content would easier. At least there should be a facebook fan page for this format and people could report stuff through it so all fans would see the action. It's also true that this forum has too many subforums and other pretty useless functions and buttons like calendar. One big international forum and one deck database would be optimal situation but it seems a lot of people prefer to post on their national forums Sad

Stick to DCI policies. I know this is hard to accept but every time I introduce this format to new people and they visit the info-site they ask me why gold-bordered and other fake cards are legal. The information gotten through conversation on this site doesn't really convince them but since they aren't allowed in Finland the format makes much more sense to them. I don't know if this is the case in other countries but if you want more competitive tournament grinders, this is one rule that need to go.

I had this idea about highlander 8-man single elimination tournament queues which could be nice way to test out new decks. We just had a this years Ropecon. Usually there has been one big highlander tournament during the weekend but a lack of organizer stopped this tradition. Instead the 8-mans were rolled with decent success and they saw plenty of different decks. During bigger events this is a great way to get people involved in highlander.

EDH is pretty popular here but I have heard increasing amount of complaints and frustration considering that format. More and more people seem to realize that by heart Magic just isn't a multiplayer game.

It's actually kind of funny that I started highlander so I could play some tournaments while sitting on rating. When they abandoned elo-ratings and introduced the even worse PWP-system I figured I have no time to grind points to qualify for WMCQ:s or to get byes (or to qualify for nationals since there is no such thing any more Sad ). So I pretty much quit playing other formats and just stick to highlander and some legacy. I know other players in a similar situation that just quit playing altogether and they could be potential highlanders.

Oh, and WotC doesn't push legacy. They do not consider legacy when designing new cards. They would let legacy die if it was up to them because it doesn't sell boosters. They just arrange a couple of GP:s to keep the crowd happy.
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MMD
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« Reply #14 on: 01-08-2012, 06:38:41 PM »

I browsed thru the old magicplyer.org main page some weeks ago with the old reports from the beginning in 2004 (HLGP1 is already 7 years ago!) and was really impressed how active the community was during that time. It was a HL community rule to write a report as tournament winner and nobody complained about that. The former HL council actively organized the GPs and on some GPs there were also amateur reporters which wrote tournament reports and analysis.

I think that the passion of the HL inventers but also an active and beneficial community was key for the success in the beginning. Today it seems to me not enough players are interested to invest time in this format. They join a local tournament when they have time for it, No more no less.

But today there are much better tools to spread the “HL virus” as we have youtube, facebook, Cockatrice and other tools. I think there must be some kind of magicplayer.org and tournament organization relaunch to improve the current situation.
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Feel free to browse through my MKM account:

http://www.magickartenmarkt.de/index.php?mainPage=showSellerChart&idInfoUser=13199

I also have a huge amount of chinese and japanese foil HL staples not listed yet,  which I would like to downgrade to english foil. Just let me know!
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