Monthly Archives: June 2014

Release Note: Conspiracy

We have Conspiracy!  It took a little longer than usual this time because our source of card information and images was late in updating.  I know that a lot of you have been waiting for this for a while so thanks for your patience and understanding.

I’ve had a lot of questions about the new cards with abilities that affect the process of drafting and their impact on Cube Tutor.  As awesome as it would be to implement these, it just isn’t feasible for a number of reasons:

  1. The impact on the User Interface.  Most of the cards ask players to reveal what they have drafted.  This implies a visual of the table plan so that players can see which cards have been revealed by whom.  This would be a cool feature regardless of Conspiracy, but it’s not a straightforward piece of work.
  2. Each new card would require an extension to the basic drafting engine.  Whether it’s adding new packs, looking at unopened booster packs, drafting individual packs, adding cards from your card pool or whatever else, Cube Tutor’s basic draft engine would need to support these actions.  It would also need to cater for a whole bunch of edge cases, like what do you do if you are drafting your whole cube and someone opens Lore Seeker?
  3. Extending the bots to understand the new cards.  How should a bot act upon seeing an unopened booster pack?  How highly should Cogwork Librarian be picked when you are taking into account Implied Value?

From an academic point of view it would be a really interesting exercise to implement these mechanics but there is a good reason why Wizards announced that Conspiracy would not be available on Magic Online!  Right now I can’t see there ever being an ROI calculation that would make the time investment and complexity creep worthwhile but who knows what the future holds?

One final point, Conspiracy introduced a new card type.  I’ve done my best to make sure that all of the Cube Tutor pages and features support this new card type, but if you find any problems then do let me know.

Thanks for reading, and happy cubing!

The Great Card Categorisation Project

Hello! It’s finally time for another update. This won’t be anything new to anyone who was involved in the first round of Beta Testing, but for everyone else, I introduce to you… The Categoriser!

We are looking to crowd source information on the function of individual Magic cards, whether they are Card Draw spells, Aggro creatures, Bounce effects, Mass Removal or whatever else. Those who participated in the Beta were the first to test out this new feature and they helped generate the list of card tags that are available to choose from. From the raw data provided by the Beta testers, I spent many an hour coming up with the final list of tags that you see today.

Now that the Categoriser is live, any new tag submissions must be approved. If you think that Crypt Ghast should have the tag ‘Ghastly’ then by all means type that in and submit it as a new tag, although I can almost guarantee that this particular tag won’t be approved! For further information on what the Categoriser is, and how to tag cards, please see the detailed information in the FAQ.

The tags submitted by you, the Cube Tutor users will have many future applications including more detailed analysis – Want to know how many Counterspells that you have in blue? Default Tag Suggestions, and most excitingly something super secret that will be revealed in the next round of Beta Testing 🙂

So if you’ve got a few minutes spare, why not help out the cause and Categorise some cards?

If this has whetted your appetite for Beta Testing Cube Tutor, then by all means get in touch and submit your application. Everyone who has emailed in so far is guaranteed to have a spot in the next round of the Beta and it is shaping up to be epic!

Until next time.

Ben.