mercredi 17 juin 2015

Why I think rotation format is the best

    I had a quick argument on the facebook page on whether or not Bushiroad shall establish a rotation format.
     This is why I want to take an article explain why rotation format is, in my mind, the best format.

      For those who don't know, rotation format is one of the two directives an editor can have over boosters' legality.
    To make it simple, rotation format only allows a booster during a certain amount of time. Every years, at a precise date, every boosters that too old (usually older than 2 years) will be removed from tournament.
      What is frequently reproached to the rotation formats that every cards are released with an expiry date.  You know that 2/3 years after, your card will become illegal in tournament plays.
    The other solution is simply to let every cards free forever (minus the ban list). For this article, we will call it the free format.

     With that beeing said, at first glance, the second solution seems way better : why would you buy a deck if you know it will be banned for sure ?
     But when we look deeper into this, we can see that this drawback is very minor and and it erases a major problem free format has.

Trust me, playing against this deck is not fun
    This is no news to any TCG players : format has to change. The card game's editor has to make newer decks top in order to sell cards. The card game's players want new decks to shine to not make the game dull and create new strategies and deckbuilding.
     In order to change the format, two "solutions" : banning older decks, or power creep.

     Powercreep is the plague of the Trading card game. Yu-gi-oh ! is a notorious example. But it is not the only one : Might and magic, Eredan (two internet card games) and Vanguard are good examples too.
      It is one of the most irritating thing that can happen in a card game. Trust me, it is so annoying to know that the deck you builded two years ago that dominated cannot face the latest decks.
      Not even in fun games, when you are playing at home with friends.

      Rotation format has three majors strenghts.
     - Rotation format allows new decks to replace in a healthy way.
     - But it allows archetype to reinvent itself. Currently, every deck has it's own cards that you know they will always be played within the deck : Skull warrior has Yamigitsune, Adventurer has Tetsuya, Thunder knight has Drago-archer and so on.
     Those cards limits the evolution of the archetype. Some powerful cards won't be allowed to be released in the archetype because having the new card and the old one will break the deck immediatly.
     Just look at Dragon world's shields : because of Blue and Green dragon shields, every others shields in the world are doomed to be bad.
      - And finally it removes unpleasent cards. Some cards can be very annoying because they are badly designed, or simply because the players get sick of it. I am personnally sick of Dungeon's Tetsuya. And if the card is liked by the community, it will simply get reprinted.

     Some people will say : "But you will be able to play with your deck for only 2 years",  Let's make an exercise.
Is it still played ?
     Everybody reading this article, raise you're hand if you've been playing the same deck during two whole years in a previous card game,  or played the same deck since the beggining of Buddyfight (same archetype, and you've changed less than 20 cards ).
     Within those who haven't changed, who have playtest all the curent decks ? And who is absolutly certain that within those decks, none of them have a smilar playstyle than their old, favourite deck.
      I don't know how many people still have their hands up, but I suppose the answer is : "very few". If powercreep did not forced players' hand already, they will change their decks on their own. And for those who didn't, they will easily find a substitute.

     I agreee, there are some casual players who bought their deck once in order to play big tournament from time to times, and simply play for fun, but they are the only players really affected by this rotation constraint (meanwhile, if we were in a free format, they would not be able to play for fun because their decks will get crushed).

Thx bushi
      To sum up : On the short run, free format seems better, because some people are hesitant to get into a game with rotation format (I was very reluctant into playing Magic because of that).
      But on the long run, rotation format are far better because players will change their decks on their own, or powercreep will  force it.

     To close this article, I want to clarify : Don't get me wrong, the way Buddyfight's formats develop
is currently is very good. There is powercreep ( try topping with the deck that won last world champioship), but it is what I could call "Passive powercreep". There is no spyke of powercreep, and no decks are left behind with the release of a single booster. Old decks are still competitive. They just become slowly less effective, until they receive a boost.
    And I am perfectly fine if Bushi doesn't change anything.

    But only god (and Bushiroad) knows how Buddyfight will be in a few years. The game will have developped, maybe Bushiroad will decide to accelerate the meta shift. And better safe than sorry, I would rather be in a rotation format and hear "you remember when Nice one used to be legal ?' than be in a free format and hear "You remember when Nice one used to be a good card ?".

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