Maximizing the Value from Scrying and Drawing

You hear this question from new(ish) players every once in a while: Why is Preordain banned in Modern, but not Serum Visions? Sure, they are close, but they are not the same. That ordering changes the card quite a bit. Also, they have to draw the line somewhere.

PreordainSerum Visions

Okay, so if Preordain is stronger than Serum Visions, does this mean you should always scry first, if you have the opportunity to choose? Well, that depends.

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How to Approach London Mulligans

Here’s the new rules, if the test in London is successful: Scry is out. Instead, you always draw your full seven and after that you put as many cards on the bottom of your library as you’ve taken mulligans. For example, when you’re going to five, you still draw the seven, but now you put two of those cards on the bottom of your library.

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How to Build a Deck

A month of so back I lamented on how people don’t really design decks anymore, so I guess I have to do it myself.

Of course, I’m not a real expert on the subject, but I do have some experience on. Furthermore, I am quite experienced in the field of software development and teaching. These two disciplines are actually quite similar and use a lot of the same principles.

I’ll be using an example of current standard, which might not be very timeless, but it is a way to showcase the process (or at least a process, because there are obviously many ways to do stthis).

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How to Avoid Slow Play

I was at the Nordic Judge Conference this weekend and slow play was one of the topics raised most often. Its a difficult area and there are no hard lines you can follow. PV wrote an excellent article on the subject of the inherent problems (with very good examples), so I’m not going go deeper into that, but I’ll offer my ideas on how to avoid going into time.

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Explaining Stack and Priority

The intricacies of the Stack came up yesterday again in our EDH games. To me its natural, but that’s probably because it was actually a big part of my education. However, since not everyone has a master’s degree in software engineering, I think this is something that needs a bit of explanation. It is probably the most difficult part of the rules that you actually need to know.

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Deck Types: Midrange

In order to make their game more approachable to new players and to keep the game fresher, Wizards’ R&D began to emphasize creatures over spells. This has been good for the game, as now those cards that appeal to new players are actually good, and not just heartbreaking as they are easily dispatched or countered as they used to be.

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Deck Types: Aggro

There’s an old article from last millenium by Mike Flores called Who’s the Beatdown?, which is still available on SCG.com. Its about assignment of who is the beatdown and who is the control and what can result from not understanding this.

What I’m talking about today, are the decks that want to be the beatdown in most situations.

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