Things By Simon

Loophole Proxy Vintage (LPV) – A New MtG Format

[Note: if you don’t play Magic: The Gathering, and don’t know what the terms “Vintage” and “Legacy” mean in that context, then ignore this article. It will be of zero interest to you.]

In the wake of “Proxy-Gate” (#proxygate), Wizards of the Coast has declared that if you make a proxy card, whether by printing one or drawing on a real card with sharpie, you have a created a counterfeit card. Gaming stories have been banned from allowing this, and hence proxy tournaments – even unsanctioned ones – are under threat.

I feel there is an elegant solution to all this. Essentially WOTC doesn’t want people playing with proxies. This is likely to eventually kill the Vintage format. Hence, here is a way to keep Vintage alive, without proxies, and only at the loss of a couple of dozen already-mostly-unplayable cards.


Introducing: Loophole Proxy Vintage

I’m inventing a new format, titled “Loophole Proxy Vintage”, or LPV for short. Loophole Proxy Vintage is exactly the same as Vintage, except for the following additional rule, all based on the table below.

All cards in the left column are errata’d to have the same name, casting cost, card type, and rules text of the corresponding card on the right.

Effectively, for example, the card Gilded Lotus does not exist in the LPV format. If you have a real Black Lotus in your deck, along with a Gilded Lotus, you are playing two Black Lotuses and hence have an illegal deck. This way people can show off their power cards if they have them, or use legitimate WOTC-printed cards and still get the experience of playing Vintage in a sanctioned LPV tournament.

When choosing the substitution list, I tried to find cards which, where possible are:

  1. Are unplayably bad; cards that you would never normally see in a Vintage deck. This makes it easier to unambiguously recognise an LPV substitute if you don’t know the whole proxy list off by heart.
  2. Have the same card type and casting cost as the cards they’re replacing.
  3. Where possible, have similar function and/or flavour to the card they’re replacing. Eg: the Ancestral Recall Substitute draws a card and does nothing else. The Time Vault substitute is an unplayable 2cmc artifact with time flavour.
  4. Are inexpensive.

LPV is unlikely to ever be sanctioned by WOTC, but now game stores can safely run LPV tournaments, in which everyone is playing with completely legitimate unmodified WOTC-printed cards, yet still having the exact same game experience as a Vintage tournament, minus the existence of a few cards that almost nobody would ever play anyway.

These cards… …are errata-cloned by these in LPV
Black Lotus Gilded Lotus
Mox Sapphire, etc. Sky Diamond, etc.
Tundra, etc. Coastal Tower, etc.
Ancestral Recall Reach Through Mists
Time Walk Fatigue
Timetwister Reminisce
Time Vault Temporal Aperture
The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale Halls of Mist
Library of Alexandria Arcane Lighthouse
Bazaar of Baghdad Ice Floe
Tarmogoyf Boneyard Wurm
Wasteland Archaeological Dig
Force of Will Fervent Denial
Mana Crypt Jeweled Amulet
Imperial Recruiter Dwarven Demolition Team

Thoughts on a few specific cards.




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