How to Improve Your Mulligan Decisions With Magic Online

January 26, 2009 | Posted by Dee

Magic Online LogoMike Flores has some useful thoughts about improving your mulligan decisions by playing in a lot of MTGO (Magic The Gathering Online) tournaments.

The difference between how I am playing now and a legitimate MTGO ringer is that there is nothing really at stake in how I play (other than my leisure / entertainment time). So I mostly just never mulligan because I care more about exploring new deck ideas than actually winning MTGO tournaments. But when you are playing tournaments and — like I was that summer — meticulously logging your ratings deltas and tournament win / loss percentages with every deck you play, there is more at stake.

Having more at stake encourages you to take mulligans more seriously because your success criteria is / becomes about winning individual games rather than exploring ideas. Tournament Magic is a far different animal from Tournament Practice room, yadda yadda yadda, and more repetitions (when winning specific games actually matter to you) influence behavior (in this case mulligan behavior) over time.