Magic Fun-Play (new Format)

The Kitchen Table forum

Posted on Sept. 23, 2018, 9:43 p.m. by TheRickDecks

Here is my idea for a new format.

_Card Pool:_The past nine blocks. Rotation occurs when the first set of each block drops.(Currently this is Return to Ravnica, Theros, Khans, Battle for Zendikar, Shadows of Innastrad, Kaladesh, Amonket, Ixalan, and Guilds of Ravnica)

Also includes supplemental products (like Commander and Masters) printed during this time. I'm not sure if i want Unstable to be allowed but if I do apporx. 35 cards need to banned out of it.
All Basic Lands are always legal in this format.

Deck Size: Minimum of 80 cards, 0-20 card sideboard, and 1 extra basic land.

Card Limit Planeswalkers and counterspells are limited to 1 of each. All other cards (besides basic lands) are limit to 2 of each card name.

Outside of the possibility of Unstable, i don't have a ban list yet but I'm thinking about Paradox Engine.

Starting Players begin at 25 life. The Extra Basic Land begins in the Command Zone. In round 1, you shuffle your opponent's deck and then they make 1 or 2 simple cuts. Rounds 2-3 players shuffle their own decks.

Mulligan Players draw 6 cards, then choose between drawing a 7th or taking the Extra Basic Land. Then they may take one mulligan at no penalty. Each player only gets one mulligan per game.(They return the extra land to the command zone if applicable before mulliganing).

Please try this format. Give it a fair shot, try to break it, and let me know what you think.

Gidgetimer says... #2

The block structure is going away so you may just want to do "The last 6 years of cards, years rotate with the release of the fall set". As is your list of "sets" is missing Dominaria and M19 and that would push two years worth of cards out. The shuffling and mulliganing rules also seem needlessly complex.

September 23, 2018 10:52 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #3

Well, many players are bound to point this out but...

This feels like a mixture of Brawl + Commander + Modern.

By that, what I mean is the use of a "Command zone", the 2-of-each, and the extended card pool respectively.

Now that I mentioned that, I'd like to ask a few questions and suggest a few expansions.


  • Is there a mathematical reasoning for there being a hard limit of 2 cards in an 80 card deck? Let's assume that someone might play with, oh I don't know... 32 lands. Typically I run 24 in Modern unless it's landfall. I run about 40ish in Commander. So saying 32 - 34 feels like a nice middle ground. This leaves us with 46-ish other cards. You're looking at a total potential of 23 different cards in the set if you do 2 of each, not including your lands. That's what I mean. Is there an actual reason you are setting this limit?


  • Perhaps set the limit based on rarity. 4 of Commons, 3 of Uncommons, 2 of Rares, 1 of Mythic. This limits your lands and Planeswalkers without limiting your fast spells and bombs. :D


  • In an 80-card game, perhaps the life total should be a bit higher? I feel as if 25 is a bit low. Why design a deck for a long game (Designing 80 cards suggests you expect a long game), if a game is not really any longer than a typical Standard match?


  • 30 life might not seem like much more, but if you set it as 30 life in a 3v3 format, that's actually quite balanced. Seeing as most Commander games are 40 life at 4v4 for 100 cards, I feel like 30 life at 3v3 for 80 is a nice middle ground, when standard / modern / legacy / vintage are 20 life at 1v1 for 60 cards.


  • Why do we shuffle decks between rounds?


  • It feels like you are attempting to deter cheating, which is great. But is there an actual reason for doing this? Because if that is the reason, giving the players free shuffles at rounds 2 & 3 sort of side-line that idea. Skilled players can shuffle cards to the tops of their libraries quite easily. I'd suggest cutting this part out, entirely.


  • So, you have a command zone with no commander? But instead a basic land?


  • Why not just allow the player to start with a basic land of their choice on the battlefield of each game? I mean, I'd suggest just entirely removing this aspect altogether but it seems fairly important to you. Would you kindly explain the reasoning behind this one for us a bit more?
September 23, 2018 10:58 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #4

Gidgetimer, the block structure is going away? I must have missed that announcement.

So are sets now going to be like Dominaria, where it's a single release of about 240 - 260 cards and six months later we move to some other world?

That feels... rushed. I hope that's not what's going on here. Can you link an article? I'd like to read up on what's going on.

September 23, 2018 11 p.m.

Funkydiscogod says... #5


"This also means that we are essentially removing the concept of blocks. Sets will share worlds on occasion, but the preset structure of a locked number of expansions being played together is no more."

September 23, 2018 11:40 p.m.

Funkydiscogod says... #6

"Planeswalkers and counterspells are limited to 1 of each."

This rule is insane. I mean, why stop there? You should also restrict combos, discard, land destruction and spells that give hexproof when they're used in response to a spell the opponent uses.

September 24, 2018 midnight

shadow63 says... #7

These rules just seem overly complex when one can just play a casual 60 or edh. The way your rotation works is strange. It should be something like the last 10 normal standard exapansions. Limits on 1 of each counter spell? That's just hating on a concept of the game

September 24, 2018 2:31 a.m.

TheRickDecks says... #8

Okay, lots of good ideas here.

First and foremost, a few people mentioned the complexity, specifically the mulligan and shuffling rules. I didn't intend for these to be part of this scenario specifically, there just neat ideas i came up with.

The Shuffling thing was supposed to help stop cheating but for simplicity we can cut it.

The Extra Land Mulligan i will just make into another thread. It's a neat mulligan idea that i'd like to try in all formats, so i figured i'd apply it here.

@ Gidgetimer. Yes, it would be 6 year rotation. That does make it simpler, thanks.

@ TypicalTimmy. Thanks for your questions.
1) The reasoning behind 80/2 each is that it is a happy medium between Commander and normal. In a 60/4 each you only get 9-13 different nonland card. Also, you can get card that are functionally identical or similar and effectively have 7 card in you deck.

In Commander you have 65-70 different, so it's a little hard to hard pull anything. Fun Play allows you to 24-30 different cards.

Also, Standard only allows for a few years. And in all other formats, nothing ever rotates out.

2) 25 life limits Burn/Aggro a little, as does only having less copies of each spell. I do like the idea of 30 life, but i don't know if that would be too much of a disadvantage for Aggro.

@ Funkydiscogod and shadow63

The point of limiting counterspells are as follows:

The higher life total and slower play style of this format favors Control. This helps curve control down a bit. (especially if i go from 25-30 life)

Counterspells tend to be overly efficient. You need an exact card to play a certain spell but i only need any counterspell to stop it. And the counter is probably less mana.

This is especially bad with creatures. There are more "destroy creature" effects than all other destroy effects combined. There are more "exile creature" effects than other "exile" effects. And creatures die to combat tricks. And to burn. And to minus toughness effect. And to deathtouch.

With so many cards aimed at specifically killing creatures, it seems a bit unfair that they can ALSO be countered like any other spell. This is why i originally had the 1 of restriction on spells that can counter creatures, but that was too clunky.

Also, with only being allowed 2 of, counterspells become more powerful and you only have 2 chances to get a specific card through

And last, this by no means destroys control/counterspells for this format. Remember, there are 25 counterspells in Standard alone!!

September 24, 2018 5:22 p.m.

eatmygender says... #9

I feel like restricting this to the releases within the last few years is a hugely limiting factor in a casual format. Not only does this mean that a lot of casual staples (e.g. Giant Growth, Terror) are completely out of the question, but it also means that the nostalgia factor that people like about kitchen table formats is removed as well. Also, while yes, Counterspells can make games long and grindy, it's the only effective removal blue has, and Blue doesn't really have any real wincons asides stalling the player. It's also weird you're arguing for the use of control despite the fact you're intentionally trying to put it at a disadvantage by giving it less spell consistency. I would also like to argue, there's nothing in this format limiting the use of incredibly powerful cards. For all it matters, I could build Birthing Pod or Storm in this format without much difficulty. I do feel like this has potential, but for the moment I'm not understanding it.

October 13, 2018 8:13 p.m.

TheRickDecks says... #10

Okay, so people don't like the restriction on counterspells, so we can scrap that.

@ eatmygender: You can't play Storm or Birthing Pod in this deck. They are both more that 6 years old. Which also somewhat answers your first point as to why cards cycle out of this format

October 17, 2018 7:38 p.m.

eatmygender says... #11

Well, while I don't think Counterspells are necessarily fun, for the sake of balance, a different sort of restriction should happen. Maybe something like a maximum of one played per turn? If that were the case, players that play lots of cards each turn won't get bogged down by control, whilst Control can still do something at all. Also... including Masters sets is a bit of a problem if they're unregulated, because it opens the door to a whooole lot more bad stuff. Remember, Channel and Fireball got reprinted in Iconic Masters, and Diabolic Tutor was printed in Duel Deck Anthology (Also legal by your rules). Soo... in your format, Channel + Fireball is legal, which isn't a good sign. However, banning supplementals as a whole is not the solution. I don't have anything to suggest, but Supplementals are very important if there's a 6-Year cycle.

October 17, 2018 8:05 p.m.

eatmygender says... #12

(Meant Demonic Tutor, woops)

October 17, 2018 8:06 p.m.

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