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14702 Posts in 1080 Topics- by 452 Members - Latest Member: Earleen Brown
Question: Which mulligan do you prefer?
Spoils Mulligan - 36 (42.4%)
Free Mulligan - 49 (57.6%)
Total Voters: 82

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Author Topic: Community Poll regarding the mulligan    (Read 24435 times)
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« Reply #45 on: 12-03-2014, 06:49:03 PM »

While tournaments of decent size shouldnt be excluded from any analysis, they are too small and take place in too different metas to have any real significant meaning. When people say „i am surprised control is doing so well everywhere“, that surprise factor is probably due to you not feeling that presence/strength in your local meta – which should be noted. Magic is very complex and not a math equation that wants to be solved. When i see statistics, i always take them with a grain of salt, there are too many factors involved - so many different levels of skill for example. I trust what i know and what i experienced.
Tabrys ist the best technical control player i know. When you play draw and go for a few turns and he hits his land drops, he is hard to beat. He was winning more than half of the tournaments in Berlin in the spoils area, which people were fine with, good play should mean good results. Now control has almost dropped off the face of the earth here. Tabrys tries to keep control archetypes around, but often dies to topdecks or not having the RIGHT answer to a certain problem. If he is not winning with control, control is in a tough spot. The spoil mulligan, other than „normal“ magic, allowed you to shape a certain game plan from the get go, you could partly sculpt your hand in a way that you are set to solve a variety of problems. The problem of control in free-mulligan-highlander is that there isnt enough library manipulation to smooth out draws in a way that you keep that preparation for a variety of problems alive. If you draw 2 sweepers, you might lose to a planeswalker or simply a manland with a sword equipped on it. Aggro asks questions, control gives answers. Questions are always right and valid, answers have to be fitting tot he question. Control NEEDED the spoil mulligan to  be prepared for the power creep that we are experiencing, especially with more and more planeswalkers and cards like true name nemesis. Having answers is not gonna do it, you need specific answers, you need versatile answers and you dont draw them miraculously (of course sometimes you do), you need to find them. You cant find them with the free mulligan and 4-5 library manipulation spells in your library.
In Berlin, we are dealing with a meta that is very board heavy. Its creatures and its about establishing a board early. There is a bunch of different decks, but they are mostly creature decks. They have prevailed. Midrange and Tempo decks are dominating here. They give you reduncy while diversifying threats and playing cards that are strong at any point oft he game. And most of all, they give you „play“ and wider decision trees than control. Control has to hope they get lucky to find that heros downfall or mana drain for jace and that supreme verdict for thrun and that detention sphere for the sword of fire and ice that is being put on nemesis. In Hanua there were two control decks in the top8, both blue red. People take this as an argument to say „see control is alive“. I watched the younger of those players (dont know his name) play, his play was on point, technically flawless, smooth, efficient use of cards, made plays that imo were of very high caliber. The other player patric hinnes has been top 8 at a few of those events and for that reason must also be a good player. I believe the players made top 8, not the decks. I myself went 6-2 in that event and even in the later rounds, the players i faced werent off that caliber, to be honest they were far from it. There is often a HUGE gap in skill in those tournaments. Tournament statistics are be taken too seriously, there are too many factors involved that you will never be able to measure.
I am not totally against the free mulligan. But i am in favor oft he spoils mulligan (58%,42% gut feeling etc.). Games were smoother, less often onesided, less frustrating (shuffling/screws) and had more dimensions.
« Last Edit: 12-03-2014, 06:57:48 PM by tonytahiti » Logged

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« Reply #46 on: 12-03-2014, 08:17:41 PM »

@berlinballz: I do not try to discard your whole argument but the style in which you argue is not helpful to me. You state your point and then say "prove me wrong". In a matter where local metas matter so much and opinion is almost everything we have, this does not work. This is not a mathematical problem where you can prove or debunk everything by a "simple" equation. Then you go on to dismiss other opinions and arguments as invalid and yet again want people to prove you wrong. That is exactly what they tried to do, you just do not accept their arguments. That is fine for some things but most people here really give a damn about the game. We can try to explain some things (like the decline of control decks in berlin) but if you do not want to hear it, then why ask?
As to you mocking me telling you about the quality of the players in Mannheim and Karlsruhe, this has nothing to do with bragging. Why would I brag with my opponents? I just see them playing and play against them and they are all great players. The fact that they do well outside of highlander should just help to prove my point which was that the results are not nothing. They are not that relevant either but they give you a slight hint at what is happening here. Although it would be much better if all decks were posted.

@tonytahiti: It was probably Tabrys winning tournaments, not control decks in general. And maybe after all the dominance of those archetypes people started to explore the new format and are fed up with all the control decks. That is just my guess.

In general I have to say it is true that most people either have an extensive highlander cardpool or they play "their" deck. I have always played esper because I do not want to or can not afford another deck. I have changed it greatly over the course of the last few years and I believe I can give a somewhat qualified statement regarding that topic.

I do not win with the esper deck because I still make about one or two unnecessary mistakes every tournament. It is an unforgiving deck because most of it's spells are answers. I usually play 2-2 which is fine by me because I know why I lost those two and that it was avoidable (soooo frustrating though). In the spoils era I usually also ended up 2-2. But it was for different reasons. The games hardly were long enough to punish the mistakes I made or did not even give me the chance to make them. Either I was curved out or lost to the random topdeck. There was not much magic involved. No decision making, almost no planning. You were just rolling with the punches and hoped your opponent would actually stop having gas. But because he played almost no lands but you still had to because of your 6 mana game winners it was you who ran out of gas. There was no time to play card draw or manipulation most of the times. One mana discard spells usually revealed the most insane of hands. This has changed a lot. Now those little guys pack a serious sting. If you did not have the 2 mana Counter you were dead. If you were on the play you usually were dead anyway. And topdecks mattered a lot too. You stablized the board and your opponent ripped the wasteland for the maze or one of his two swords for your wurmcoil engine. Because wrath effects were nearly unplayable back then (they were either too slow, the opponent still had a grip full of gas and was not drawing lands anyway or he had the random counter he could spoil into or away from) you were trading one for one all the time against a deck that played 10 lands less than you did.

It just was not fun at all. When I lost I usually were not even able to put up a fight. I was just pummeled around until I died. Now even when I lose, it was a nice and fair game most of the times. With the free mulligan games are just more fun because you actually do something, have to make decisions and get the chance to make good or bad decisions for the future turns. And yes, longer games tend to be decided by topdecks sometimes but if you look at the general development of cards in magic over the last few years, that is what wizards is actively pushing (worse players like swingy topdeck cards a lot and those make up most of the card sales). And it should not come as a surprise that this has found it's way into the highlander matches after all. The spoils mulligan just prevented most people from playing those game changing 5 and 6 drops wizards is pumping out at the moment. As much as I hate this policy or theirs, I hated those spoils era games a lot more. This did not feel like regular magic at all. Now it does.

With spoils you had your sick hand and you just had to play it. Now you have to plan and think and evaluate a lot more. At least to me it seems to have become more complex and therefore more fun.

I hope this helps.
« Last Edit: 12-03-2014, 08:21:44 PM by Kenshin » Logged
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« Reply #47 on: 13-03-2014, 08:00:25 PM »

Can anyone show me a format in Magic right now, where midrange decks don't dominate/win the big tournaments?

That's the style of play Wizards wants at the moment. The printings of at least the last couple of years all favored some kind midrange strategies, with some borderline exceptions that were kept in check with certain bannings.

So nobody should wonder, if these kind of strategies also tend to win the big HL-tournaments. This isn't as much about a different mulligan as many of the people in this discussion think, but more about individual card quality and redundancy.

The discussion about the mulligan to me boils down to everyone's personal feelings and play experiencies. In playtesting games at the weekly draft in Bielefeld i didn't have the impression, that people tend to take more mulligans. As the games got a bit slower and longer, on could get the impression, it comes down to better topdecks, but to me it's more about the early turns and not making mistakes there.

@wolf: thx for the elaborate contribution. If the free mulligans got you to quit, it's already done good things...
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« Reply #48 on: 15-03-2014, 01:01:17 AM »

Hello everyone,

without all the math and meta game analysis in some local stores, i loved the spoiler mulligan because the best reason of all *drum roll* it feels good.

I think there is no big difference between spoils and free mulligan in tournaments. With a free mulligan you just need more luck to get what you need to win or at least play. Since the free mulligan i can see much more mulligans to 6 or 5 than before and i don't like to win vs an oppenent with mana problems. (i play in usually in Braunschweig ~30 players on quarterly tournaments and with some friends on the kitchen desk weekly since some years)

greetings Geist
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« Reply #49 on: 15-03-2014, 01:29:39 AM »

I prefer the free mulligan, the spoils-mulligan was a unique NON-DCI-History.

I think we have to stay within the DCI Rules.
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