Posted tagged ‘Planeswalker Points’

Just another Kassandra rant

November 2, 2011

You probably already read it. If not, be assured, this is n NOT a fake. This IS the end: The end of Magic as a mental sport.

If you have been reading ZEROMAGIC since its beginning, you know that I warned about this process as early as 2007. But the legitimacy of competitive Magic started getting eroded even earlier. Actually, with hindsight the first clear sign was the removal of Counterspell from the core set because it was “too strong”. (Later they corrected that reasoning to “many players hate to play against counterspells”, but the fact that they lied about this to appease those players who actually believed this due to a lack of strategic understanding shows how they began to embrace the dark side). I noticed something wrong when they created planeswalkers and added another rarity, but I couldn’t yet pinpoint where exactly they were going. Then WotC reduced PTQ slots in Germany and proved at several other more or less small occasions that they didn’t care for the integrity of the tournament scene and the interests of serious tournament players below professional level. That is when I began to take the hint and started to write about the deliberate erosion of tournament Magic. My personal epiphany, however, happened when they announced that new sets would now be legal on the first day they were officially sold. I immediately realized that this policy was completely incompatible with the concept of Magic as a mental sport (and I still fail to understand how anyone could NOT see this). I took the cue, stopped playing constructed and no longer travelled to PTQs.

Now that I knew what to look for, I understood that practically every decision made by WotC over the last few years pointed the same way: Players who took this game seriously were no longer of any consequence. Bad players were now officially the new target audience. All WotC did was to adjust the pace of this change so that it did not become too obvious too early. Of course, people refused to believe that WotC would do such a thing. As is often the case with changes for the bad, at first people were unable to see them for what they were, and later they already got used to them and no longer cared. Thus, WotC were able to increase that pace.

A few weeks ago they announced Planeswalker Points, and FINALLY some players realized what WotC were up to. Of course, it was too late. The game was already out of the hands of those who saw it as a competitive endeavour. Also, ingeniously, Planeswalker Points catered to the mindless masses in a blunt and irresistible way. But still some players who should have known better defended that decision, considering it to be just flawed or misguided.

Now, however, everything should be crystal clear. Planeswalker Points are no mistake. They do exactly what WotC WANT them to do. They kill the idea of Magic being a mental sport. That’s what they were made for.

Saying “I told you so!” does not give me any satisfaction, but I’m still unable to not say it.