someone in wizards R&D keeps losing to legacy lands on their mtgo alt
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Dredge, The London Mulligan, and the continued use of Serum Powder
to start, I want to say that I'm using numbers from Frank Karsten and extrapolating from there, in addition to basic combinatorial work that anyone can do themself in excel.
The london mulligan has people discussing playing dredge without 4 serum powder, and even testing it during the mtgo test period and in paper events with the new rules. In my opinion, playing dredge without serum powder is a mistake. the following is an anecdote and then some numbers.
Anecdote: I played in TSI this weekend with dredge under london rules. List was similar to @ChubbyRain and others recent lists, with hogaak, force of vigor, and field/salvage as only nonbazaar lands main, playing ghast and ichorid over narcomoeba. I went 2-4 in games where I mulled to 4 or less and 8-0 in games where I kept 5 or more cards. I sleeved up a list with powders over the 4 worst cards for an eternal weekend trial the next day, but it ended up not firing.
Dredge probably has a better win rate when it keeps 2-4 card hands than any other deck in any format with such hands, but given how often we mull it leads to a significant portion of our game losses. But first, the math if all we care about is finding bazaar:
Vancouver Mulligan, no powder has an 86.5% chance of finding a bazaar if you're willing to mulligan to one card, discounting the scry. miss every 7 games.
Vancouver Mulligan, with powders has a 94.17% chance, a miss every 17 games, again discounting scry.
London Mulligan, no powders, has a 97.2% chance to find a bazaar, a miss every 36 games.
London Mulligan, with powders, has a 99.3% chance to find a bazaar, a miss every 143 games.
(As a refresher, the powder-London interaction is that you put back the number of cards as if you've kept the hand, exile the hand to powder, draw that many, then have the option to mulligan to another 7 if you don't like what you drew and keep going.)
of course, bazaar isn't actually everything, and mulling so low that you don't have the ability to keep counterspells, hollow one, unmask, cards to pitch to counterspells/unmask/FoV, or lands to trigger ghast in hand after you activate bazaar, or having cards to discard as you dig for these things. This is my primary point in favor of the continued use of serum powder- not the 2% increase in finding bazaar, which is significant, but the average hand size at which you find bazaar.
Playing serum powder increases the average hand size you keep by over half a card. The proportion of hands kept that are 5 or more cards goes up over 11%, from 78.2% to 89.6%.
By the mulligan to what will if kept be a hand of three Powder-London has a higher chance of finding bazaar than pure-London has if willing to go to one. London has to be willing to mulligan to 2 to have equivalent odds to Vancouver-Powder, while London-Powder only has to be mulliganing to 4 to have chances better than what dredge has had under the old rules. We are of course going all the way down, but I think these are useful comparisons.
This glosses over a few bits, such as assuming that what you powder from your deck is a cross-section of its components and thus doesn't change its strength, but this isn't the case. Powder exiling non-bazaar cards leads to a higher proportion of kept hands with double bazaar, for example, and there's some other changes once you've mulliganed and have some choice over what you're exiling(this probably also changes the powder math slightly as you can put excess powders back before powdering the hand). This is all hard to sim, as is figuring out exactly how much higher win rate you get with double bazaar over single and stuff like that, so maybe another time.
to sum up main points, powder is still worth playing in dredge, partially for the raw percentage chance of hitting bazaar but moreso for the larger portion of games in which it allows the player to keep a hand with enough cards to do something.
does anyone have a large dataset of dredge starting hand size vs game win rate?
RE: August 26, 2019 Banned and Restricted Announcement
@thecravenone the curse of the mana drain is that every thread is about B+R, except the B+R thread
RE: 5-8 December - Lucca, Italy - Nebraska's War 7
this was a good event, well run, good people, glad to have artists at an event of this size, next time I won't get 9th on breakers.
Latest posts made by BlindTherapy
RE: [STX] Detention Vortex
Mana taxing is nothing new for White, the difference now is the new templating is more proactive.
oh, i'm not saying that taxing in white is a new theme, i'm saying if you have a supression field in play it costs 5 to pop detention vortex rather than 3.
RE: Forgotten Realms Cards
Smother got outmoded by Eliminate, which obviously hits things that Power Word Kill doesn't (planeswalkers). Power Word Kill is interesting, but in a very weird niche. Victim of Night is probably a less relevant type restriction but harder to cost at BB; still, a deck that wants a 1B removal spell instead of plow, trophy, or other stuff presumably has basically just underground sea for mana sources.
RE: [MH2] Urza's Saga
@fsecco that is why i was specifically describing the 'if you have a chief of the foundry' scenario, yes, were the card able to get X spells.
I think the actual card has a floor of being a land that makes 1 mana and a ceiling of making 2 constructs and then fetching up a sol ring/crypt/lotus, or of being a land that makes 1 mana for the first 2 turns and then 3-4 mana 2 turns after you play it. this is just evaluating the search as 'get a mana rock', which is not all it's limited to, and of course not an option in non-vintage formats for the most part (getting mox diamond/ chrome mox with this will probably be a bit underwhelming).
to mention some other targets of varying relevance, most probably not good enough for vintage:
amulet of vigor
the ozolith/arcbound worker/animation module/welding jar in modern hardened scales
lantern of insight and all its friends
altar of the brood/locket of yesterdays for a silly combo with sensei's top that's only legal in vintage
candelabra of tawnos
colossus hammer, though that modern deck only wants so many colorless lands.
RE: [MH2] Urza's Saga
I meant anything of note it doesn't get because of snow mana, etc.
oh, I mentioned chalice for X spells, but depending on how many Chief of the Foundry were in your shops deck this being able to get Walking Ballista / Hangarback Walker would have been pretty significant. stonecoil less so, but ravagering stuff onto it might beat doing the same for the others under certain circumstances.
RE: [MH2] Urza's Saga
few things of mechanical interest:
"Urza's Saga" is now a subtype
it gets artifacts with a set cost, not by mana value. so it can't get an Arcum's Astrolabe or Witching Well, for example, nor can it get a Chalice of the Void or Engineered Explosives on 0
or more relevantly in modern it doesn't get Lotus Bloom