I Think Magic Arena Is Making Me a Worse Person

For the record, I decided to stop using money on WotC in general after the Magic 30 debacle and I am not going to start spending money on the game until they make huge changes to their management and philosophy. Obviously, the amount of money I used to spend is not going to make a dent on their margins, but at the same time, if I don’t feel like I’m contributing to the game the existance of which is actually worthwhile, why should I use any money, when its making me feel bad?

I still try to keep my hopes up. After all, we know from the history of the game that the game has the potential to be great. It just so happens that the design of the game has lost its way. The incentives are just wrong. They are looking to monetize everything without much regard for the longevity of the game. They are trying to compete with more modern games without understanding how much damage they are doing to their own game in the meanwhile.

So, why is it making me a worse person? Because the incentives for players are often bad as well. How often do you see someone roping you (meaning that they would rather let the time run out than concede)? This has become an art form on its own. Some players will actively just sit there and do what they can to keep the game going as long as possible without doing anything, just so that they can waste your time. Some of this is because they are assholes, part of it is that they want the rewards for the wins and are willing to do it in the most asshole way possible.

At the same time, interaction is becoming harder and harder. The variety and powerlevel of threats is such that it’s hard to compete with that. So, you try to find a deck that is just faster and more consistent in early kills. Or you can just ditch the consistency, because you can just try to kill your opponent fast and if that doesn’t work, just rope them. They didn’t learn anything from Tibalt's Trickery. They still keep doing that in many forms. Now there’s Venerated Rotpriest, which can lead to very similar nongames.

What do I do to combat this? Well, no point in trying to do anything other then to find deck to goldfish myself. So, I play this auras deck, which will either win, if the opponent can’t interact (and I have some defense against interaction as well), or I will scoop, if the opponent is able to interact or I don’t find a winning hand with two mulligans. I lose a lot of games, but that doesn’t really matter, because I just play constructed to gather gold to draft.

So, I’m making other people’s experience more miserable, because that’s how the environment is and that’s how they have deliberately designed it. They didn’t (hopefully) want people making others miserable, but they have clearly pushed these solitaire decks, that don’t have to care about what the other player is doing. They are taking actual gameplay out of their game.

So, playing the game is making me an asshole (or a worse asshole some people I know would probably tell me). Still, I keep playing with the hope that they can somehow fix the situation. I mean, Shadows Over Innistrad, which is going to get a remaster in the near future, was actually a good limited format, so I’m sort of looking forward to that, but I’m looking forward to something that was great like six or seven years ago and that’s not good either.

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