Tobold's Blog
Sunday, January 22, 2017

Apart from other claims to faim, Magic the Gathering might also be the game that invented Pay2Win. There is a cap to it, so tournament play becomes possible because all tournament players have all the cards they need. But for the average player with a small to medium-sized collection, added cards mean more options for deckbuilding and improved chance to win.

As I said, in Magic Duels (iOS) I have all the available cards from the basis set and the 6 expansions. At the start I spent some money on the basis set, but through regular playing I earned so much gold that these days I can buy a complete expansion the day it comes out. Maximum options for deckbuilding, but not a huge challenge. Especially since the PvP system is so bad.

So I started a new project: I started Magic Duels the PC version, available for free on Steam. And I'm playing really for free. I played the story mode enough to buy one booster from each expansion, which also unlocks the starter cards from each of those expansions. So now I have a tiny collection of 197 cards, mostly commons, compared to the 1159 cards I have in the iOS version. And that fundamentally changes the way I build decks.

I don't think I'll play this long enough to get all cards, but right now it is a nice little challenge to try and build some decent decks with such a limited card pool. And when I earn enough gold to buy a booster, it is more exciting to see whether there are cards in it useful for one of my existing decks.

"And when I earn enough gold to buy a booster, it is more exciting to see whether there are cards in it useful for one of my existing decks."

That's where the 'generous' models fail, in a sense. If you can't get a lot of cards and those you get are random, you can rightly assume your competitive chances are limited. But you DO have the thrill of getting a new card now and again, and the challenge of making up decks with the cards you have, instead of using standard strong decks.

Probably hard to make this work in a competitive league. But as a single-player game against the AI it can work well, like a card-based roguelike.

Do you mind posting any effective decks you have created using deck building wizard?
It is a shame that you can not get points using decks built using the advanced deck building option.
@DerRaven : Is it possible that you haven't been playing for quite some time? The restriction that you needed to use the wizard deck builder to do quests was dropped several expansions ago.

These days my main complaint about the daily quests is that half of them require you to do PvP, but as one can change one quest per day I usually can work around that.
@Tobold: It actually HAS been quite some time since I returned to Magic Duels. Thank you so much for the information, it will make deck building and playing much more enjoyable now!
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