Core 19 = Worst Set Ever

Spoilers, Rumors, and Speculation forum

Posted on June 14, 2018, 10:42 a.m. by meatsmith

Core 19 will be the worst set that WoTC has ever produced.

Now... I don't actually believe what i just wrote in the above. Why did i write it then? Well, every time a new set comes out you have people throwing this sentiment around.

This behavior isn't unique to MTG players or gamers in general, but it does seem to be magnified in those categories of people. And it can get really irritating.

In my opinion, it is sort of a boy who cried wolf situation. every set that comes out is awful, the game is dying and we should all commit mass suicide now, because our lives have been stripped of meaning and there is no god because Mark Rosewater continues to breathe air.

yeah, yeah, yeah... whatevs.

This sort of bullshit behavior really does take the focus off of truly bad sets. When every set is bad, how can you even tell what sets are actually poorly designed?

We should all be pissed about how terrible Iconic and Masters 25 were. we should all be pissed that Amonkhet through to Rivals of Ixalan were probably the worst expansions in recent history. We should all be pissed that crazy-big print runs caused market saturation and devalued the sets even before they were released. we should all be pissed about the steep decline in card quality up until very recently. these things are valid cases against WoTC's ability to make good decisions.

But... aside from these obvious flaws and fans feeling burned by recent events and such... is seeing a minuscule amount of cards in the first few spoilers or leaks, and then declaring the set to be a "garbage fire", that a valid way to judge quality of an upcoming set, or just wilfully ignorant?

I would say it is wilfully ignorant; how can you tell if a set is the worst thing since the holocaust (or women's rights, depending on what side of the gamergate you swing), if you have only seen 5 fucking cards? That is not a good predictor of quality.

But what do you all think?

cdkime says... #2

I think Amonkhet through Rivals of Ixalan were perfectly fine sets. They introduced two new planes in settings we had not visited before. They were enjoyable to play in sealed, added some new archetypes to eternal metas as well (such as Approach and Dinos), and provided powerful tools for existing archetypes (Torment of Hailfire, Fraying Sanity, etc.).

That's all to say, perhaps those living in a glass house shouldn't throw stones. You are complaining about the "boy who cried wolf" situation, but, at the same time, are representing your personal opinions as absolute facts.

I agree it is a tad more foolish when an individual makes such a sweeping generalization based off a very small subsection of the set; but something being more foolish does not excuse an arguably lesser generalization.

June 14, 2018 11:23 a.m.

MagicalHacker says... #3

Can't we all agree to disagree? I mean, I loved Theros block, but lots of people didn't. I believe we would be in agreement to say that in general, people who tend to be pessimistic can/should realize that about themselves and make an effort to move away from that type of toxic negativity.

June 14, 2018 12:43 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #4

Everybody has their favorites. Mechanically speaking, Core 2019 seems rather bland. Probably won't support Standard all too much. The cards don't really look all that appealing for Modern either right now. Maybe EDH / Pauper can find some good use out of them.

But at the end of the day, what makes a set "good" is whether or not you enjoy it. "Good" is subjective. We can measure the value / power of cards based on their individual impacts on the competitive scene, but if you're not a competitive player than it doesn't apply to you.

Simply put, if you enjoy the cards, it's a good set.

Personally, I LOVED Dragons of Tarkir merely because it has Dragons. My favorite subtype in the whole game. People would buy booster boxes of Khans for the fetch lands. I bought a box of Dragons for the creatures.

Sets are only as "good" as you allow them to be. <3

June 14, 2018 1:04 p.m.

maxon says... #5

Wether you are complaining about the set or the complainers, it's still worthless complaining. Get over it and maybe don't compare miniscule problems to things like mass genocide and equal rights.

June 14, 2018 2:27 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #6

I'll admit, I didn't fully read the post since I got the gist of it within the first few sentences. maxon's comment made me re-read it fully to see what in the Hell is going on here.

I think, if able, this post should just be purged. It's clearly just nonsense hatred. There's 117 cards spoiled right now out of 280. That's 41.78% of the cards spoiled.

So, clearly this is just hyperbole veiled under aggressive insults.

E.G. - Thread should be purged, IMO.

June 14, 2018 3:08 p.m.

berryjon says... #7

I dunno. You'd have to suck pretty badly to match the Worst Set Ever: Chronicles.

June 14, 2018 5:39 p.m.

JRaynor says... #8

Dissenting opinion: Amonkhet through Rivals of Ixalan has been pretty awesome actually.

I quite look forward to the core set too.

June 14, 2018 6:10 p.m.

meatsmith says... #9


most of these replies are just... how do you people function?

well it doesn't matter.

Yes... Mods: delete this post. delete me, too. i can't suffer fools like this.

June 14, 2018 8:44 p.m.

SteelSentry says... #10

As far as I remember, core sets have always been mechanically dull, but provide a good base for Standard, especially with rotation in fall. I've also seen talk of a couple cards being constructed playable, like Goblin Instigator as Mogg War Marshal #2 (and good Standard support for Gobs) and Elvish Rejuvinator in place of Wood Elves in some decks.

June 14, 2018 9:06 p.m.

JRaynor says... #11

You have to look at magic from a wholistic perspective. Vintage, Modern, Standard, Limited, Commander, as an Economy, as a Local game store environment, as a collectible, as a story, from an art perspective, etc.

I follow magic because I am involved in a lot, but not all, of these high points.

The past few years the Art has continued strongly. The story has taken several moves in a very positive direction and is currently on an upwards trajectory.

MM17 was only a year ago and it was an incredible set. M25 and Iconic masters were let downs, only because the cost per pack vs EV wasn't strong enough, but even so, this had an inversely positive effect on the magic economy, which is stronger than it has been for a very long time. This has a net positive effect on the game. By all reports, the limited format for both of these sets was strong.

From a flavor perspective, Ixalan nailed it. If you are hating on Dinosaurs, Pirates, and Vampires, you just have no soul... Who looks at Gishath or Zacama and doesn't think, COOL!

Cat Lords were introduced in Amonkhet and then Wizards doubled down on the cat tribal in Commander 2017. Speaking of Commander, the commander sets from 2016 were some of the best we've ever had, and somehow 2017 commander was not a let down afterwards.

Jace and bloodbraid got unbanned in modern and Didn't break the format. I dare say, they improved it.

Un-sets came back! Unstable was an incredible draft experience!

Reserve list cards continue to spike, which while bad for vintage and legacy as playable formats, is great for collectors and the economy.

Standard, I'm less familiar with - but almost all of the recently banned cards have been from Kaladesh, not Amonkhet - Ixalan so it would seem to me that your complaints should be directed at Kaladesh if standard is your concern.

But as for the aspects of magic with which I am involved - Modern is doing well, Economy is doing well, Commander is doing well, Limited is doing well, the Story and Art is excelling and improving, the community is stronger than ever.

I think Magic is doing great. Whatever it is that's upsetting you about your hobby here, take a wider perspective and you'll see that the game is thriving right now in many areas. The minds at the top continue to course correct.

Dominaria and Battlebond have already knocked it out of the park, but when it comes to complaining and stressing out about all this stuff, as you said about the next core set - give it a chance first. Take a look at how many good things are happening. Look at the bright side.

June 14, 2018 11:05 p.m.

Azdranax says... #12

berryjon I would almost agree with you, if not for living through the glory of 1994 releases up until the drop of Fallen Empires...

1994 Magic Set Releases In Order: 1. Antiquities 2. Revised 3. Legends 4. The Dark 5. Fallen Empires (dufuq)

I cannot express to anyone who did not get to experience this period of early Magic history how much of a nut punch Fallen Empires was to people playing at that time. When High Tide and Hymn to Tourach are your chase cards, you're a F-ing awful set.

June 15, 2018 1:11 a.m.

berryjon says... #13


Are you dissing High Tide and Hymn to Tourach? That's it! Dancing Scimitar fight at dawn! ;)

June 15, 2018 1:18 a.m.

Azdranax says... #14

berryjon Funny story related to Fallen Empires...the store I played at in 1994 (Yakima, WA) had developed a commander-type variant where you had to have at least 100 cards, with up to 4-of-each card. The store was selling packs of Fallen Empires at the time for 25 cents because they ordered a ton and everyone decided the set was trash. So, we'd have 4-player battles, and at the end of the game, the losers would buy a pack of Fallen Empires and shower the winner of the game with them.

I remember my build fondly, as once Ice Age came out it was an Aggression (Abzan, plus a splash of red) Wrath deck, with four of each of the dual lands in green, black, red and white combos, with Wraths, Nevinyrral's Disks, Royal Assassins, Jokulhaups, and the coup de grace...Lhurgoyf. Those were the days...

June 15, 2018 1:35 a.m.

Boza says... #15

"The store was selling packs of Fallen Empires at the time for 25 cents because they ordered a ton and everyone decided the set was trash. So, we'd have 4-player battles, and at the end of the game, the losers would buy a pack of Fallen Empires and shower the winner of the game with them." - I think this is probably one of the best MTG stories I have ever heard.

Fallen Empires, The Dark and Chronicles each have a huge claim to fame in being the worst MTG set ever. Compared to them, other sets are cardboard gold.

June 15, 2018 3:21 a.m.

Set looks sick actually...

June 22, 2018 1:24 a.m.

GRCard125 says... #17

Core 19 is looking INSANE, actually. There's lots of reprints of GOOD cards (yeah, yeah, there's the whole collecting debacle, but it means that now the rest of us can afford them), some pseudo-hate cards, and things looking good in general.

Of course, everyone's opinion on what makes a set good or hot garbage is different. I agree with anyone who says that Master 25 sucked because the price per pack was ridiculous compared to what you're probably going to get, but that's why I also generally don't buy packs. My own personal definition is low-mana cards that do insane things when they hit the battlefield. Or as I like to put it, yes, I like POWER CREEP

June 22, 2018 2:31 a.m.

vasarto77 says... #18

Personally, I desperately wished that Core sets remained dead forever. They are almost universally despised among all mtg players, and offer almost nothing in return. Crowds for pre release and release tournaments are about half of what normal sets for mtg are, and I have never once met a person who was genuinely excited for a core set in any way remotely closely resembling the same level of hype that any normal set offers. To put it short, if I had a button I could push to make core 19 go away I would push it without hesitation.

June 25, 2018 5:39 a.m.

vasarto77 says... #19

Also, whatchu'll talin bout? THE DARK is great!~

June 25, 2018 5:47 a.m.

Boza says... #20


"They are almost universally despised among all mtg players." - where do you get that from? Sure, they were unpopular, because WOTC had no idea what to do with them as a set, but M19 is looking full of fresh ideas.

"I have never once met a person who was genuinely excited for a core set in any way remotely closely resembling the same level of hype that any normal set offers." - sure, but that is not their point at all. If they outshine the non-core sets, they will fail in their purpose to a baseline set. If your average enffranchized player is too excited for them, it makes them less appealing to newer players.

TLDR - If you do not like the set, it is probably not for you. But I imagine you will get M19 singles for your Standard and Modern decks, right?

June 25, 2018 6:12 a.m.

vasarto77 says... #21

I guess so.

June 25, 2018 5:06 p.m.

There’s a few really cool cards I’m personally excited for

June 25, 2018 7:53 p.m.

Argy says... #23

I have found recent expansions lacking, but I've waited until all the cards have been spoiled before saying thus.

In my interactions I've had the opposite experience from you.

I've seen people say that the newest set is the best one they've seen and it will revitalise Magic, when to me the cards have seemed dull.

So far I'm impressed with M19.

It's the first time in ages that a set has sparked some creativity in me.

June 27, 2018 10:22 a.m.

vasarto77 says... #24

I guess I am kind of warming up to the idea of core sets coming back, I just hate them so much still though, and I might not be able to get a whole lot of use out of this set since I just do not play standard at all-only modern.

June 27, 2018 8:07 p.m.

Argy says... #25

I remember M15 VERY fondly.

Mostly due to the Convoke mechanic, Tormod's Crypt, and Crucible of Fire.

That Enchantment set my DTK Dragons deck up perfectly.

July 11, 2018 10:37 a.m.

lathomas64 says... #26

"We should all be pissed..." I am entirely unsure if this paragraph is sincere or satire meant to drive your point home.

July 11, 2018 1:37 p.m.

meatsmith says... #27


Many things to many people.

July 17, 2018 8:47 p.m.

Hexaflexagon says... #28

Honestly, I think Core Set 2019 is great. Why?

  1. Well, as many people have pointed out, it gives us some high-value reprints so the non-top 10% can use them.

  2. Also, it provides a starting place to new players who otherwise wouldn't play. It gives short descriptions of abilities on the card, to make it easier for said new player to grasp what this game really is about.

  3. This particular set gives us at least some insight at what our next Ravnica Set's Elves will look like and what they will be doing (killing with poison and snakes, riding on drakes/flying stingrays, etc).

  4. The Elder Dragons. Come on, who doesn't like some more 3 color commanders?

  5. It finally gives us something against Mono-Black Control/Shade.

My relatively short rant is over.

TLDR: Long Live The Core Sets!!!

July 18, 2018 11:59 p.m.

Hexaflexagon says... #29

Oh, and one more point:

No. 6. It gives us a set a year which is plane neutral, meaning that we can have cards, artwork, and lore from any plane from any time. Not like sets like Rivals of Ixalan, Dominaria, etc where cards must come from the plane on which the set is based (with some few exceptions, such as taplands getting reprinted to stay in Standard).

July 19, 2018 12:54 a.m.

meatsmith says... #30

Hexaflexagon Isn't flying on stingrays a Zendikari elves thing?

July 24, 2018 2:54 p.m.

Hexaflexagon says... #31

But doesn't Ravinca have flying Stingrarys too?

July 24, 2018 4:33 p.m.

TypicalTimmy says... #32

I had some of the most fun drafting this set. Seriously just loved it. And brewing with it is just fun from a Modern standpoint.

I'm getting into EDH now as well and waiting for EDH 18 to come out but I have ideas working.

I think though this Core was a great set both for new players and returning ones.

I'm not much into Standard (rotation cost is just too much to keep up with. I'd rather buy a deck that works for years, rather than blow money on decks that are illegal in 6 months), but I was able to design a Naya deck that held well in Draft.

Hope this trend continues and R&D learns from their mistakes and their successes.

July 24, 2018 4:51 p.m.

meatsmith says... #33


i... i don't know. õ_0

now i have to check.


I wasn't seriously saying the set was bad; people just don't care to actually read beyond the headline. or, they have such poor reading comprehension that even if they did cross that big text threshold, they still were not able to distill the message of the overall piece.

I agree with you and others who understand M19. Contrary to what my detractors say about me above, I don't believe M19 is a bad set. i think the set was a giant success, actually. it hit a homerun with lore, and had some pretty sorely needed reprints in it for the returning players. win/win.

We get a good set with valid reprints... WoTC makes money... we are all happy

Core sets were the long needed entry-point for new players, and i think M19 does a great job with that, too. Going back to the lore, it also gets new players in on some of the longer running historical events. Combine this set with Dominaria, and a new player has a pretty good primer on what the main storyline is about.

i didn't draft it nor have i even touched the set yet, except to snap up multiples of Scapeshift and Crucible of Worlds. but what i hear from everyone i have talked to, and from just looking at the cards, i can tell that M19 is doing well at reestablishing the faith that the game is here to stay for a long time.

Saying that the past three sets, Dominaria, Battlebond, and M19 being such bright points of the game isn't Pollyanna of me at all, i think.

People in my original post got realllllllllllllllllllllly salty when i brought up issues with card and set quality prior to Dominaria. But you cannot deny that the cards physical quality is much better than it was in Ixalan block. And this lone fact is deffinetly a sign of the game moving in the right direction.

"Fun", however, that is subjective.

i still maintain that Ixalan was an enormous let-down, and nothing will change my mind about that.

i still maintain that Amonkhet block was boring to play, and hackney in concept. Again: not budging on this.

But a lot of people enjoyed those sets.


That's them.

and that isn't to say those sets didn't have good cards... i am an EDH player, and i have seen more than i wished to of The Immortal Sun. And "Jace, the Pole Dancer" pretty fun in casual Superfriends.

I loved the cards Solemnity and Approach of the Second Sun from Amonkhet block. and i have a garbage but fun Cycling EDH deck that i never would have been able to build the right way had it not been for Amonkhet bringing back the original cycling mech. fuckin'... praise the sun for that.

anyway, I don't think it is wrong to say that there was a recent dark period, that the newer sets have pulled us from. and hopefully we can stay out of the quagmire.

but that won't stop the "ugh the game is dying/dead ugh" whiners. History repeats itself with C18's not yet complete spoiler season... people are already picking at whatevet they can about it.

i am surprised that i haven't seen anyone groussing about the fact that 3 of the planeswalker commanders are female, and 2 of those females are non-white.

well... time to read some YouTube comments... i am sure i will find something that will make me wish nuclear war wipes us all out before the next Ravnica sets.

July 27, 2018 10:17 p.m.

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