Author Topic: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)  (Read 1008 times)

Offline jbeers285

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To the Redemption Community,

   I am writing this letter to everyone because I truly care about the game, the future, the fun and the fellowship connected to Redemption.  I want to clarify a couple points before I continue.

     1. I have not been a play tester for the last 4 sets and did not have early knowledge of any of the cards in the sets.
     2. I found a combo that would all but guarantee a national championship in T1-2P, T2-2P and any other open category in which the combo is employed.
     3. I got this combo ruled in my favor by a judge and I knew it would work.
     4. I have been wrestling internally with the Christ-like nature of running the combo and have come to the conclusion that it shouldnít happen.
     5.  The combo was used to build a Type 2 version that wins on turn 1 of practically 90%+ of games without your opponent playing a card. (Credit to John Early for the fleshed-out build)
     6. The combo was slipped out to 2 other players who were planning to use it in Type-2. Since it got out and has now become available to players who didnít discover it but got it through secrecy at the top end of the game, it really begins to feel unethical in my mind and heart.
6. As a Christ follower I have been unable to rest knowing my intention of playing this combo to win T1-2P.  I feel like running it elevates my flesh and my competitive drive over my integrity and character.
     7. Running this combo is not God honoring and disrespects all the people who have made the investment to come to nationals hoping to have a chance to compete.  It selfishly ignores the fun and fellowship aspect of Redemption.

« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 06:57:31 PM by jbeers285 »
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Offline jbeers285

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Re: A letter to the community from Josiah Beers
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2020, 12:53:51 PM »
+2
***Here is the combo***
Step 1 - Birth Foretold or Solomonís Dream is used to search out Son of God.
Step 2 Ė Play Son of God
Step 3 Ė Play any of the territory class negates that target the last enhancement played and negate Birth Foretold or Solomonís Dream.  This returns Son of God back into your draw pile.
This is the heart of the Combo Ė it allows you to play Son of God and still get it back to play again.  In the deck I intended to play I will show the pieces I intended to use to continue to abuse this combo.

Step 4 Ė After playing Solomonís Dream it is in discard pile, play A Soldiers Prayer to recur Solomonís Dream and play it again with another negate last enhancement or Unsuccessful (PoC).

What makes this play super viable is the ability to put all the necessary pieces into the reserve. So, my reserve in T1 would include
   Solomonís Dream
   A Soldiers Prayer
   Kinsmenís Agreement
   Godís Mercy / Jonahís Anger
   Speak Favorably

Then I play Feast of Unleavened Bread to remove a bunch of Evil cards from a Discard pile to take all these pieces.  Then I can trigger a territory class Negate card to clear any negate my opponent has in territory and then the rest to search and play Son of God twice and then put it back into my deck for a third use to come when drawn.  This means the combo fits into a deck that is also built to play a real game of redemption and doesnít have to become a combo centered deck.  The deck easily includes Birth Foretold for a 3rd play of Son of God and then returning it to deck.  The combo works tutoring Son of God or The Second Coming if Son of God already got played.  The deck list also includes Sorrow of Mary to return your own Son of God to the bottom deck to ensure you can combo out when you are ready.  The deck literally doesnít need to win a single rescue and it generates plenty of souls to save with Son of God.

In Type 2 you do the same exact thing except now you can stuff 2 Solomonís Dream and 4 copies of A Soldiers Prayer in reserve to effectively play Son of God 6 times in a single turn.  You then rescue with The Woman with Child search Son of God and play it for the 7th Soul before your opponent ever gets a single turn.  Yes, the T2 version requires some specific tech pieces to ensure it goes off but let me assure you, the deck has been built and it has been done, not can be done but has been done. John Early built the most efficient version of the T2 version from the ground up in White and it is absolutely amazing.

As a Christian, an elite player, a former play tester, a play group leader and as your 2020 National tournament host I felt the God honoring thing to do is to expose the combo.  It is my understanding that the Rules Elders will get on a call to break this combo so it will not work at the national tournament.

I hope this sets a new precedent for Redemption going forward where broken combos are exposed for the sake of the community instead of exploited for the sake personal gain.  This letter is for the community.  This combo most likely wins most if not all categories it gets used in this year, but everyone who realizes what happened will leave with a bad taste in their mouth and perhaps anger or resentment.  I will not be the cause of that over winning a game. I will not allow this to damage the community or to dishearten those who have made the extra sacrifice to come to the national tournament.  I understand secrets and unique card interactions are part of the game but broken combos need exposed and stopped before they damage the community.

Please read this knowing I do not intend to be arrogant or out anyone.  I am outing my own combo for the sake of us.

Blessings in the name of Jesus Christ,
Josiah Beers
« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 09:47:18 PM by jbeers285 »
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Offline Red Dragon Thorn

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+1
Can confirm, rule change/clarification incoming
Covenant with Death. That is all.

Offline MarshallMatters

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2020, 01:47:58 PM »
+1
Thank you so much for this letter! I'm excited I did not have to play against this combo and look forward to some competitive games at nationals! I played Samuel + throne = victory, in every deck since I saw it played, and am so excited this year to be challenged in building new decks with my brothers. So much fun and I'm thankful everyone is looking for some healthy competition.

Offline Sean

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2020, 02:50:28 PM »
+1
I applaud you for sharing this.  I'm sure no one would want to play against this combo.  Thank you.
May you prosper greatly!
Daniel 4:1b

Offline Cnakeeyes

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2020, 03:07:17 PM »
+1
I applaud you for sharing this.  I'm sure no one would want to play against this combo.  Thank you.
there is no play against it. It's sit and watch me deckout and win without you playing a card In the t2

Offline Red Dragon Thorn

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2020, 03:08:17 PM »
+3
I applaud you for sharing this.  I'm sure no one would want to play against this combo.  Thank you.
there is no play against it. It's sit and watch me deckout and win without you playing a card In the t2

My kind of deck
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Offline TheJaylor

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2020, 03:53:53 PM »
+1
Thanks for saying something about this Josiah. It was pretty fun to build and test the T2 version with John, but I was still debating about actually playing it since, as you said, it's not really in the spirit of the game. I don't think I'd want my first T2-2P Nats win to be with this deck, especially since I didn't come up with it, and I certainly wouldn't want to lose my shot at winning because someone else was using it, so either way it doesn't feel great and I think it reflects well on you as the progenitor of the combo to "come clean" so to speak. My original deck is cooler anyway. :P

That said, for anyone more interested in the ridiculousness of the Type 2 version, stay tuned for a Redemption with Jayden video where John Earley and I will go into more detail about the build and give a lil demo.
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Offline dermo4christ

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Re: A letter to the community from Josiah Beers
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2020, 04:09:16 PM »
+1
***Here is the combo***
Step 1 - Birth Foretold or Solomonís Dream is used to search out Son of God.
Step 2 Ė Play Son of God
Step 3 Ė Play any of the territory class negates that target the last enhancement played and negate Birth Foretold or Solomonís Dream.  This returns Son of God back into your draw pile.
This is the heart of the Combo Ė it allows you to play Son of God and still get it back to play again.  In the deck I intended to play I will show the pieces I intended to use to continue to abuse this combo.

Step 4 Ė After playing Solomonís Dream it is in discard pile, play A Soldiers Prayer to recur Solomonís Dream and play it again with another negate last enhancement or Unsuccessful (PoC).

What makes this play super viable is the ability to put all the necessary pieces into the reserve. So, my reserve in T1 would include
   Solomonís Dream
   A Soldiers Prayer
   Kinsmenís Agreement
   Godís Mercy / Jonahís Anger
   Speak Favorably

Then I play Feast of Unleavened Bread to remove a bunch of Evil a Discard pile to take all these pieces.  Then I can trigger on territory class card to clear any negate my opponent has in territory and then the rest to search and play Son of God twice and then put it back into my deck for a third use to come when drawn.  This means the combo fits into a deck that is also built to play a real game of redemption and doesnít have to become a combo centered deck.  The deck easily includes Birth Foretold for a 3rd play of Son of God and then returning it to deck.  The combo works tutoring Son of God or The Second Coming if Son of God already got played.  The deck list also includes Sorrow of Mary to return your own Son of God to the bottom deck to ensure you can combo out when you are ready.  The deck literally doesnít need to win a single rescue and it generates plenty of souls to save with Son of God.

In Type 2 you do the same exact thing except now you can stuff 2 Solomonís Dream and 4 copies of A Soldiers Prayer to effective play Son of God 6 times in a single turn.  You then rescue with The Woman with Child search Son of God and play it for the 7th Soul before your opponent ever gets a single turn.  Yes, the T2 version requires some specific tech pieces to ensure it goes off but let me assure the deck has been built and it has been done, not can be done but has been done. John Early built the most efficient version of the T2 version from the ground up in White that is absolutely amazing.

As a Christian, an elite player, a former play tester, a play group leader and as your 2020 National tournament host I felt the God honoring thing to do is to expose the combo.  It is my understanding that the Rules Elders will get on a call to break this combo so it will not work at the national tournament.

I hope this sets a new precedent for Redemption going forward where broken combo are exposed for the sake of the community instead of exploited for the sake personal gain.  This letter is for the community.  This combo most likely wins most if not all categories it gets used in this year, but everyone who realizes what happened will leave with a bad taste in their mouth and perhaps anger or resentment.  I will not be the cause of that over winning a game. I will not allow this to damage the community or to dishearten those who have made the extra sacrifice to come to the national tournament.  I understand secrets and unique card interactions are part of the game but broken combos need exposed and stopped before they damage the community.

Please read this knowing I do not intend to be arrogant or out anyone.  I am outing my own combo for the sake of us.

Blessings in the name of Jesus Christ,
Josiah Beers

Josiah,
I applaud you in allowing Christ's love and grace show in your character and honesty! You  told me about this combo this passed weekend when we were prepping. I even thought to myself how in the world am i going to compete with this?! That would totally ruin the fun of playing the game, competitively and/or friendly. I look up to you for advice since you are a much better player than I am (as most are). I appreciate you doing this for our community and your willingness to be an example for Christ and not an example  of selfishness! Blessings friend and thank you!

Offline jbeers285

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2020, 04:10:41 PM »
0
@dermo to be fair, I hinted at a solitaire deck. I did not disclose the combo.
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Offline dermo4christ

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2020, 04:48:23 PM »
0
@dermo to be fair, I hinted at a solitaire deck. I did not disclose the combo.

True. I misspoke. My apologies. My thought process was still the same....lol....:)

Offline jesse

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2020, 05:43:56 PM »
+1
Way to go, Josiah! I'm impressed and proud of you, brother!!
Love is the flame of God, Who is love and an all-consuming fire!- Song. 8:6-7, 1 Jn. 4:8, Deut. 4:24

Offline RedemptionAggie

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2020, 06:18:59 PM »
+2
This hasn't been run by any of the other Elders, so it's subject to some changes, but here is the initial addition to the REG that eliminates this combo.

It is legal to "negate-recur" other CBN cards (or even not CBN cards, since there's no more cascade negate) in this manner.

Quote from: REG>Dominant
A lamb or grim reaper illustration located in the icon box identifies a Dominant. All Dominants are unique. All abilities on Dominants cannot be negated. A Dominant can be played at any time on the active players turn regardless of initiative provided no effects are resolving.

Dominants are discarded after they are played, unless their ability states otherwise. Dominants on the table are discarded when their ability ends.

Once a Dominant has been played, it cannot be returned to any previous location by interrupting or negating the ability that moved it from that location.

The opportunity to play Dominants follows the order laid out in the Action Priority entry. Action Priority for Dominants only resets to the active player when a player takes an action other than using a triggered effect or playing and using a Dominantís ability, so a player can play multiple Dominants while they have Action Priority for Dominants.

Offline TheJaylor

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2020, 07:54:05 PM »
0
This hasn't been run by any of the other Elders, so it's subject to some changes, but here is the initial addition to the REG that eliminates this combo.

It is legal to "negate-recur" other CBN cards (or even not CBN cards, since there's no more cascade negate) in this manner.

Quote from: REG>Dominant
A lamb or grim reaper illustration located in the icon box identifies a Dominant. All Dominants are unique. All abilities on Dominants cannot be negated. A Dominant can be played at any time on the active players turn regardless of initiative provided no effects are resolving.

Dominants are discarded after they are played, unless their ability states otherwise. Dominants on the table are discarded when their ability ends.

Once a Dominant has been played, it cannot be returned to any previous location by interrupting or negating the ability that moved it from that location.

The opportunity to play Dominants follows the order laid out in the Action Priority entry. Action Priority for Dominants only resets to the active player when a player takes an action other than using a triggered effect or playing and using a Dominantís ability, so a player can play multiple Dominants while they have Action Priority for Dominants.

I'm curious, where's the relevant section that was changed to allow played cards to return if they were searched for or drawn? I wonder if this could still be abused outside of dominants, like using Persian Horsemen to grab Confusion from Reserve, play it, and then play Shimei's Malicious Curse or something to negate Persian Horsemen.
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Offline jbeers285

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2020, 08:17:12 PM »
0
Or Hamanís Plot???
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Offline TheJaylor

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2020, 08:32:30 PM »
+4
Or Hamanís Plot???
*Opponent sits down with their deck and a roll of Scotch tape*

Me: What's that for?

Them: Oh, you'll see.
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Offline Kevinthedude

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #16 on: August 11, 2020, 01:38:01 PM »
0
As someone who considers discovering powerful unknown strategies one of, if not the greatest, joy in card games, I applaud your honor for "leaking" this strategy rather than running it. I can safely say I would not have done the same. I do want to clarify something about this subject though, in case there are any aspiring Johnnys/other new players reading this thread, and I don't expect it to be controversial: this situation should not discourage anyone from discovering and running powerful and even overpowered/"broken" strategies as long as they don't hinge on an obvious rules oversight.

Combo decks are a valid strategy in pretty much every card game although they occasionally carry some stigma if that card game lends itself to combo decks where the combo is to lock the opponent out of the game for long periods of time before winning. Redemption itself is very unique relative to most other card games and true combo decks are much rarer than is the norm, so finding one is typically a nugget of gold for a deck builder. Just because true combo/lock decks are rarer in Redemption does not mean they are a less valid strategy than more normal decks. The reason this particular combo would be frowned upon and is getting hotfixed is strictly because it involves going way outside the intended rules of the cards involved (Playing a dominant several times using cards that aren't explicitly designed to allow an exception to the norm of using a given dominant only once per game), because the strategy is so consistent, and because this broken interacting directly results in winning the game. All of these things together are what move the combo from a nugget of gold to a "bug" in the game's code that needs to be fixed rather than played. If you're an aspiring theoerycrafter and/or combo player chasing the thrill of discovering a niche strategy that allows you to take the meta by storm, don't let this incident discourage you.

Offline Reth

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2020, 07:25:24 AM »
0
Thank you very much Josiah! A really wholehearted and honourable move driven by strong faith and a Christ centered heart! Also a very valueable contribution for the community.

Maybe it is my missing experience at all and especially in T2 (never played it so far). But for winning in turn 1 you would need enough souls out at your opponents side, right? The same goes for T1.
And are there enough TC negates to recur the necessary amount? Also the combo need to find a way around CwD-Decks or guys like CoW Moses (even more if he might get some CBN + Protection). While I really think this is quite broken - is it also such OP? (I am really lacking experience here.)

Offline Cnakeeyes

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2020, 08:16:30 AM »
0
Thank you very much Josiah! A really wholehearted and honourable move driven by strong faith and a Christ centered heart! Also a very valueable contribution for the community.

Maybe it is my missing experience at all and especially in T2 (never played it so far). But for winning in turn 1 you would need enough souls out at your opponents side, right? The same goes for T1.
And are there enough TC negates to recur the necessary amount? Also the combo need to find a way around CwD-Decks or guys like CoW Moses (even more if he might get some CBN + Protection). While I really think this is quite broken - is it also such OP? (I am really lacking experience here.)
You play 2 hoppers souls, 2 of the site that create a token, burial to kill a soul in that site then make another token 2 Paul's belts, 7 souls generated. Plus many others.

It gets around Moses and Cwd by going first. This is mostly in theory but you play some souls to pull other souls out of your deck to increase your chances of going 1st.

Offline Reth

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2020, 08:31:53 AM »
0
You play 2 hoppers souls, 2 of the site that create a token, burial to kill a soul in that site then make another token 2 Paul's belts, 7 souls generated. Plus many others.

It gets around Moses and Cwd by going first. This is mostly in theory but you play some souls to pull other souls out of your deck to increase your chances of going 1st.

Thank you very much but this would be mostly working for T2, right? What about T1?

Offline TheJaylor

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #20 on: August 12, 2020, 07:09:34 PM »
0
You play 2 hoppers souls, 2 of the site that create a token, burial to kill a soul in that site then make another token 2 Paul's belts, 7 souls generated. Plus many others.

It gets around Moses and Cwd by going first. This is mostly in theory but you play some souls to pull other souls out of your deck to increase your chances of going 1st.

Thank you very much but this would be mostly working for T2, right? What about T1?
T1 is sorta the same. You play souls like Awake, Lawless, maybe Revealers, Majestic Heavens (which you can only have 1 in for T2, for the record), etc. Depending on the brigade there are some other cards too such as Warning Against Rebellion that help for soul gen. I'm also skeptical on its ability to generate enough souls consistently, but 2nd turn is still pretty good as long as your opponent doesn't get their counters down.
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Offline Red Dragon Thorn

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #21 on: August 12, 2020, 07:47:15 PM »
0
You play 2 hoppers souls, 2 of the site that create a token, burial to kill a soul in that site then make another token 2 Paul's belts, 7 souls generated. Plus many others.

It gets around Moses and Cwd by going first. This is mostly in theory but you play some souls to pull other souls out of your deck to increase your chances of going 1st.

Thank you very much but this would be mostly working for T2, right? What about T1?

The beauty of the T2 version is it's consistency and ability to win immediately.

The beauty of the T1 version is that it fits into a deck that can play a very strong fair game until it flips the switch to win out of nowhere
Covenant with Death. That is all.

Offline Cnakeeyes

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2020, 06:39:16 AM »
0
You play 2 hoppers souls, 2 of the site that create a token, burial to kill a soul in that site then make another token 2 Paul's belts, 7 souls generated. Plus many others.

It gets around Moses and Cwd by going first. This is mostly in theory but you play some souls to pull other souls out of your deck to increase your chances of going 1st.

Thank you very much but this would be mostly working for T2, right? What about T1?
T1 is sorta the same. You play souls like Awake, Lawless, maybe Revealers, Majestic Heavens (which you can only have 1 in for T2, for the record), etc. Depending on the brigade there are some other cards too such as Warning Against Rebellion that help for soul gen. I'm also skeptical on its ability to generate enough souls consistently, but 2nd turn is still pretty good as long as your opponent doesn't get their counters down.
You are correct. I was thinking the site was only 2 colors but it's 3

Offline Master Q

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #23 on: August 13, 2020, 01:48:52 PM »
-1
Honestly I wasn't going to post on this but it seems like you're fishing for praise,  everyone's freely giving, and all I can think about is how, if this stunt was pulled on me mid-game, my gut reaction would be to walk away from constructed formats then and there. My faith in this game would've been completely shattered.

Don't misinterpret what I mean when I say that. I have the utmost trust and confidence in our host/judges' ability when it comes to making rulings. They are more well-versed than I ever aspire to be. So it is not their ability to apply the rules correctly that I would lose faith in, but their overall judgement to make calls mid-tournament that might end up going against the rulings for the sake of a healthier game. This kind of common sense shouldn't be alien to most. If I can't trust the PTB to recognize an exploit of an obvious oversight in a rules document regulated by maybe five or so individuals that results in a completely one-sided gamestate and make the call right there that it won't be allowed, then why would I even bother playing, knowing that the written rules, flawed or no, are themselves more important than the spirit of the game?

Now, it's a different story if it's a card interaction rather than a vague rule that's the culprit of said one-sided gamestate. See ANB, side battles and card recycling/destruction, yeah, even CoL. Those were all busted. The difference? Players used cards rather than the rules to warp the game. They have no obligation to disclose these card-related combos to others beforehand. Of course, rule changes and erratas still happened after.

Players should be awarded for their ingenuity, not their deception. If a judge was asked privately if the rules could be used to abuse this, agreed that they could, and didn't deem it necessary to do something about it beforehand (alert the general playerbase, reword the rules preemptively), then I think that is the precedent that should be set.

Sorry if I sound harsh, but someone showed me this thread and these are my thoughts. If you want to play SoG 7 times and not play the game, do it somewhere away from me, if you please. Carry on.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2020, 01:02:24 PM by Master Q »
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Offline Red Dragon Thorn

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Re: Letter to the community from Josiah Beers (Setting a New Precedent)
« Reply #24 on: August 13, 2020, 03:10:40 PM »
0
Players have always approached judges privately when checking about combos. It's been that way for the past twenty years.
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