What's the best Planeswalker to get next? Version 2.

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  • GilescloneGilesclone Critical Contributor Posts: 735 Critical Contributor
    edited November 2017
    The problem with the objective model I’m using for abilities is that removal cards are pretty cheap.  Exquisite Firecraft does 6 damage for 6 mana.  Final Reward is 7.  If I up the value of Ajani and Ob Nix because I think removal is more valuable than say mana gain or creatures, where do I stop?  (Btw, I do think removal is more valuable).  If I pretend EF doesn’t exist and have to use 2 Lighting Javelins, Ajani gains 8 points- top of tier 3.  If I give a similar bonus to Ob Nix, he jumps to the top of tier 2. Seems a bit much. 

    Not sure I agree with extra reductions for negative mana.  Right now the mana score is based on a sum of the total bonuses/penalties.  So I’m already subtracting the minuses.  I’m not sure we need an anti-Koth rule.
  • bken1234bken1234 Chairperson of the Boards GLOBAL_MODERATORS Posts: 2,587 Chairperson of the Boards
    The problem with the objective model I’m using for abilities is that removal cards are pretty cheap.  Exquisite Firecraft does 6 damage for 6 mana.  Final Reward is 7.  If I up the value of Ajani and Ob Nix because I think removal is more valuable than say mana gain or creatures, where do I stop?  (Btw, I do think removal is more valuable).  If I pretend EF doesn’t exist and have to use 2 Lighting Javelins, Ajani gains 8 points- top of tier 3.  If I give a similar bonus to Ob Nix, he jumps to the top of tier 2. Seems a bit much. 

    Not sure I agree with extra reductions for negative mana.  Right now the mana score is based on a sum of the total bonuses/penalties.  So I’m already subtracting the minuses.  I’m not sure we need an anti-Koth rule.
    To your first point, Firecraft is a Rare and Final Rewards is in AKH which is no longer available in the vault -- I try to always keep the -- "If I just joined the game what would be most beneficial" mindset. -- If a new player has a low chance of getting certain cards, the abilities become more necessary. 

    A point on this is how many players we have beating Bolas in their first week or two of playing in TP9 using abilities alone. 
  • GilescloneGilesclone Critical Contributor Posts: 735 Critical Contributor
    edited November 2017
    I can see excluding rares, but as far as black removal goes, Lilliana’s Defeat tells us a kill still costs 7. (9 includes 3 direct damage).  Or Lethal Sting for that matter.

    And AHK is only out of the vault until they fix the game. 
  • hawkyh1hawkyh1 Critical Contributor Posts: 780 Critical Contributor
    edited November 2017
    negative mana is not as important in mana denial as
    mana spread across colours and the difference
    between on colour and off colour matches. koth,
    samut, nahiri tend to suffer from mana denial because
    they are only strong in up to two colours and the
    difference between their preferred colours and off
    colours is quite big. sarkhan, lilly3 and tezz2 by
    comparison virtually never suffer from mana denial.
    mostly because their mana is spread across 3 colours
    and the drop to matching less favourable colours is not
    as severe. (it's much harder to corner from 3 colours
    without leaving a match 4/5 available) despite the
    negative mana crippled to the point of no mana on a
    white match, in my experience lilly3 does much better
    than the numbers suggest.

    HH
  • asm0deusasm0deus Match Maker Posts: 73 Match Maker
    Just my opinion but shouldnt planewalkers be based on all cards that can be used regardless of if you have them or not? Thats how i think they should be rated. 
  • Tilwin90Tilwin90 Critical Contributor Posts: 638 Critical Contributor
    I have been experimenting a lot lately with the planeswalkers, but for a newer player this is the sequence I would presently recommend (please notice this is my opinion from my experience with newer players and it is subject to debate):

    1) Basic 5 planeswalkers
    You need something to play with in events and in all colors, so you want to have access to all nodes as soon as possible. The basic 5 planeswalkers are the cheapest alternative there is right now.
    NB: If there was a thing I would change in the game for the newer players is give them the 5 planeswalkers out of the box. With so many PWs around now, and the original 5 being so underpowered, this would be completely reasonable to let players actually experiment with their card collections free of charge.

    2) Karn
    Now hear me out, I know this sounds crazy. I mean newer players need more flexibility, and that's what dual-colored planeswalkers offer, right? Well, I would say it depends...
    Newer players have a slimmer card collection, so Karn helps tremendously with that in PVE and story mode. Sure, he doesn't unlock color mastery, but you can advance in story battles as it is and his potential is absurd. His first ability is highly relevant in finding room for those more expensive cards and his ultimate can do wonders in creatureless control builds (admittedly quite difficult to achieve when you are on a budget... but doable when you can use 5 colors).
    I am confident to say that he is better than any of the 5 original planeswalkers so he can substitute any one of them in an event. Sure, you can only substitute one, but which planeswalker offers this kind of flexibility?
    Finally, keep in mind that he also comes with Gilded Lotus, which will offer a huge power boost to newer players in the original 5 planeswalkers that seriously lack mana ramp.
    I want to hear more opinions on this of course, but from my experience, I say Karn is definitely worth it! (I built some super janky common/uncommon cards deck and it was crazy!)

    3) Kiora - Huatli2 - Bolas
    While dual colored planeswalkers are more expensive, I find Kiora to remain at the top of the game for newer players. She's less reliant on a good card collection and once you decently level her up she will do an awesome job! The colors are nothing to scoff at either, and she can cover some important objectives by her own (a.k.a cast 2 or less creatures).
    Huatli2 is another beast. She doesn't need much to be good, though admittedly you need to build a creature-centric deck around her. Good both in the early and late game, she is a well worth addition.
    Bolas of course is Bolas, and if you want flexibility you want to get him. He doesn't need expensive cards to be good (he has removal out of the box for Christ's sake) and he comes with 3 colors. Admittedly he can be quite pricy, so for more budget alternatives we can of course go for Ob Nixilis, Koth et. al. But none of them will substitute Bolas. I think he's worth the price.

    Post this step, players have already covered some of the most important colors:
    Green: Kiora/Huatli2
    Blue: Kiora/Bolas
    Red: Bolas/Chandra1 (I think she is quite decent for newer players)
    Black: Bolas/Liliana (that discard is actually not so bad)
    White: Huatli2/Gideon (Gideon remains the best original planeswalker for newer players in my books)

    Did I mention Huatli2 + Bolas = 5 colors? That should speed Story Mode up big time.

    4) Nahiri - Teferi/Dovin
    Regarding Nahiri, I know many veterans love Ajani1. But here's the thing: newer players have cheaper cards. And Nahiri loves small cheap creatures to pump with her first ability and smash fast. That's where her true strength lies. Even now I use her in aggro matches. So you get instant value out of her and she's a force to be reckoned with in both white and red nodes. Something Koth can't do.
    Eventually you will want a white creatureless planeswalker and that's where Dovin used to kick in. I am curious about Teferi so we'll see if he ends up being less parasitic and more powerful than Dovin, so I'm saving this spot for now. But one or the other, you will want your blue/white planeswalker.

    As a newbie, stay away from: 
    - Planeswalkers reliant on mythics or key cards to be good - Ajani1, Elspeth, Angrath (debatable), Sarkhan
    - Parasitic planeswalkers that have a good replacement - Tezz2, Nissa3, Ajani2, Arlinn Kord, Chandra2
    - Planeswalkers that just don't fit in - Tezz1, Gideon2, Huatli1, Jace3

    What about Jace2/Lili3/Lili2/Koth/Saheeli/Samut/Sorin/Vraska/Garruk?
    Well... you can obtain very good results with them, and some of them (Koth and Garruk for instance) are cheap alternatives to dual-tri planeswalkers. You can obtain very good results with any planeswalker if you have the key cards or the card collection, but the whole point of these suggestions are to give a good general ramp up to all players without assuming they have card X or Y.
  • DBJonesDBJones Critical Contributor Posts: 803 Critical Contributor
    Ajani 1's abilities can actually make up for a lack of control cards for newer players, so he can be useful that way. Nahiri is probably the right recommendation, I just don't think he's one you need to warn against. Also, if you have 2-3 good kill spells, Liliana 3 is amazing at low levels, especially for Training Grounds. My level 1 Lili 3 brought my time for four victories down under half an hour on average all the way into Silver tier.
  • Tilwin90Tilwin90 Critical Contributor Posts: 638 Critical Contributor
    edited May 2018
    DBJones said:
    Ajani 1's abilities can actually make up for a lack of control cards for newer players, so he can be useful that way. Nahiri is probably the right recommendation, I just don't think he's one you need to warn against. Also, if you have 2-3 good kill spells, Liliana 3 is amazing at low levels, especially for Training Grounds. My level 1 Lili 3 brought my time for four victories down under half an hour on average all the way into Silver tier.
    For a newer player Nahiri > Ajani1. Ajani1 can be alright but he relies on specific cards to be very good. And having two planeswalkers in the same color combination when there are many others to grab in other colors is unwise and expensive. And I know there are a lot of endgame players who favor Ajani1 for good reason (he pilots HUF+Deploy/Approach like a boss). But for newer players, Nahiri is the to-go RW.

    As for Lili3, as I said, it can be a fair planeswalker if you have the right cards... I just don't find her the best iti has to offer. But she is an okay alternative especially if you have some ETB effects to abuse. 

    As for training grounds... I wouldn't say that's the decisive factor for getting planeswalkers. Training Ground can be played infinitely per day without any cost. Speed helps, but events give superior rewards while keeping things fun, therefore I tend to prioritize events (and story mode for availability reasons and high source of crystals) to anything else.
  • GilescloneGilesclone Critical Contributor Posts: 735 Critical Contributor
    Eventually I want to update my first page list.  But in the meantime I thought I would look at what people are actually playing.  So I went to the deck recommendation threads at TP9’s Discord site and counted decks by walker.
    This list is a bit influenced by people testing out the new walkers, but I still find it pretty relevant.

    1. Kiora - 36 decks
    2. Bolas - 34
    3. Huatli GW - 30
    4. Angrath - 22
    5. Karn - 22
    6. Vraska - 20
    7. Ajani RW - 17
    8. Samut - 16
    9. Dovin Baan - 15
    10. Tezzeret UB - 13
    11. Elspeth - 11
    Others with more than 5 decks: Sorin, Saheeli, Ob Nix, Ajani GW, and Jace 2 (the support loving one).

    I think Angrath and Vraska might be a bit high, but not too high and otherwise this list seems pretty good.  I don’t think I could recommend both Karn and Bolas in your first 5 multi color walkers, as they are so expensive.  But in the long run, they are top tier.

    Thoughts?

  • Tilwin90Tilwin90 Critical Contributor Posts: 638 Critical Contributor
    Good analysis @Gilesclone
    Now looking at the current planeswalkers list, I think Teferi could go up much higher in the list than Dovin, going on top of Angrath, right below Huatli2.
    I am surprised Koth is not there - people play with Koth in real events A LOT, and I face a LOT of Koths all around.
    I am also surprised to see Saheeli is less prevalent when compared to Tezz2 (which in the current meta is mediocre at best).
  • Mark_TedinMark_Tedin Tile Toppler Posts: 166 Tile Toppler
    My top 3: bolas, samut, saheeli.
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