Changes Coming for Magic Online Data Sharing
Today, Wizards of the Coast announced a fundamental change to the amount of Magic Online information they share and how they share it. The company's stated goal with these changes is to "use Magic Online decklist data to show you what is possible, not necessarily to show you what is most played." To that end, Wizards is making two important improvements.
First, the definition of a "distinct" decklist is changing. Previously, a difference of ten cards between decklists would qualify them as being distinct from one another. The company decided this wasn't promoting deck diversity as much as they'd like. Therefore, only decks with twenty different cards will be considered diverse from now on.
Second, Wizards will uncap the number of distinct, undefeated decklists that they publish. (Previously, a maximum of 35 decks were shown each week.) These lists will be shared twice a week for Standard (Mondays and Thursdays) and Modern (Tuesdays and Fridays). Lists will be shared once per week for less popular Magic Online formats such as Pauper, Commander, Legacy, and Vintage. All lists will continue to be pulled from Competitive Leagues.
These changes are no doubt made in part to help diversify the Standard metagame, which has been prone to stagnation of late. For over a year, players have "solved" new Standard metagames within weeks, resulting in numerous bannings. Hopefully these policy changes will inspire players to build differently.
Wizards also acknowledged that more tuning might be in store for this system. Until that time, we'll see how players and formats react to this new data.
Kyle Massa is a writer and avid Magic player living in upstate New York with his fiancée and their two cats. When he's not writing, you'll find him down at the East Greenbush FlipSide store jamming booster drafts. For more of Kyle's work, visit www.kyleamassa.com or follow him on Twitter @mindofkyleam.
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