Aspect of Hircine alternate art

Aspect of Hircine alternate art

Superior meme. Would recommend.

This one looks like it only does guard

So fucking cute

Khajiit is horny baby yeah!

Does skill even matter in this game?

Does skill even matter in this game?

Hello everyone!

In another thread, I've ran into the following statement: "A 50\% win rate aggro deck will still ladder faster than 70\% win rate control deck."

This is not the first time I see someone stating that the ranked ladder depends mainly on time invested rather than skill. And it somewhat even makes sense. Since you can't actually lose ranks, any deck that has a non-zero probability of winning a game will climb the ranks eventually - but the time required will differ greatly. Also, aggro decks have much shorter games than control decks (like of a factor of 2-3 on average sometimes), so the statement above can even be realistic. But is it?

Please note that the following description requires some not so basic mathematical and/or programming experience - if you are not interested, feel free to scroll to TL;DR.

I decided to find out how many games one needs to win on average to advance in rank at a given rank with a given win percentage. The parameters I considered:

Below Rank 5 you have a chance for a bonus round that advances you 2 stars instead of 1. Since I did not find any proper analysis on the chance for a bonus round, I chose 2% based on my experiences. Below Rank 10 you can't lose stars. There are two stars in serpent; you can't go lower after Serpent 2. The following number of stars you have to climb (not including the sertpent) before advancing from rank 12 to 1: 4, 4, 4, 7, 5, 5, 5, 7, 6, 6, 6, 7. (Based on https://www.legends-decks.com/article/14/basic-information-about-ranked-play).

Considering these conditions, I built a Markov-chain (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Markov_chain), where the states were the number of stars achieved at a given time. Given a w chance to win a game with the deck and b chance to have a bonus round, after a game you have:

1-w chance to lose a star, 0 chance to remain on the same number, w * (1-b) chance to gain a star, w * b chance to gain 2 stars.

The original restrictions translate to the following:

from rank 5, b is always 0, in the Serpent, you will not lose nor gain ranks below rank 10, your chance of remaining still is 1. You have 0 chance to get here anyway (you can't lose stars). below rank 10 and at Serpent 2 at any rank, the chance to lose a star is 0, below rank 10 and at Serpent 2 at any rank, the chance of remaining on the same number of stars is (1-w) instead of 0.

This can be converted in a state transition probability matrix as stated in the wiki article, which I will call A. Since the number of of Serpent stars is fixed (2), the probability of advancing in rank in exactly N steps is p(N) = A^n[3, (stars + 3)] - A^(n-1)[3, (stars + 3)]. (+2 is the two serpent stars, +1 is the advancement itself).

With this given, the expected number of games until the advancement is sum(i=0 -> infinity; i*p(i));

Since it was really not trivial to write this in a closed form and since I'm a computer programmer anyway, I decided to write a small program for calulating this numerically. The code itself is free and publicly available and freely forkable/modifiable for anyone on my GitHub: https://github.com/DarkRainbow/ESLClimbing It is written in C++, compliles with g++ 7.3.0 with std=c++11, probably with other c++ compilers as well, but I did not test it. It calculates the expected value as simple as possible. Possibly much performance could be gained with more efficient matrix multiplication, but since the largest matrix I needed to handle had only 100 elements, I did not care. It calculates the probabilities up until 100000 games or until the chance of winning in at maximum N steps is higher than 99.9999%. Feel free to have fun with the code or even improve it.

TL;DR: the results.

To advance at Rank 4, on average you need

10 games with 80% win rate, 15 games with 70% win rate, 26 games with 60% win rate, 67 games with 50% win rate, 3810 games with 30% win rate.

The required number of games on average at Rank 12:

5 games with 80% win rate, 6 games with 70% win rate, 7 games with 60% win rate, 8 games with 50% win rate, 14 games with 30% win rate.

The required number of games on average at Rank 1:

12 games with 80% win rate, 18 games with 70% win rate, 31 games with 60% win rate, 85 games with 50% win rate, 8928 games with 30% win rate.


At really low ranks, fast, non-optimized aggro decks will outperform the well-built control decks, since they are really fast compared to them and the difference in the number of required games to climb is only 3 games between 50% and 80% win rate decks. At higher ranks, deckbuilding and skill will likely outperform plain grinding: 50% win rate aggro decks would have to be 3.5-4x as fast as ANYTHING with 70+% win rate on average to outperform them, which is not likely even against control decks. Probably noone will ever climb to Legend with horrible decks at 30% win rate even with a LOT of time given: to climb from rank 1 to Legend with such a deck, even if we consider 5 minute games each (with even matchfinding considered!) it would require 8928*5 minutes = exactly 31 full days.

So all things considered, if we ignore the lowest rank, which most players who target Legend ranks won't even hit, deckbuilding and playing skill will worth way more than playtime, even if you find a fast, non-horrible deck. At the same skill level, the committed playtime is more important than anything for reaching the the highest ranks, but to answer the question in the title: skill definitely does matter. A lot.

Thanks for reading!

Clickbait title into Statistical analysis. 10/10 will upvote again.

The required number of games on average at Rank 1:

8928 games with 30% win rate.


Cool analysis! I do wonder what the actual percentage of bonus rounds is though, not just for this purpose but in general. Sometimes I forget that bonus rounds exist until I happen to get one.

Nerd alert!

(That was amazing thanks for sharing)

Worst choice ever!

Worst choice ever!

I was ecstatic to see legendaries shining up at me! At least until i actually saw what they were.

My only duplicate at this point was Nix Ox and i think i might have been able to make it all the way without further duplicates but the deck would have suffered.

None of the options have legs to at least be a creature. All of them are literally dead cards.

Seht's is the correct pick here. Best case scenario is it might bait your opponent into spending a card to destroy it.

Why would he? He’d probably notice that it’s not working and wouldn’t waste a removal on it.

They won't notice it's not working if it's the last card you play that turn.

Whereas for the other cards, they're dead draws 100% of the time.

I never said Seht's is a good pick. It is not. But given the three choices, it's the correct one.

Building on a Theme: Redoran Onslaught

Building on a Theme: Redoran Onslaught
Building on a Theme: Redoran Onslaught

Budgetify is back! In text form. YES.

card pics instead of names would really help reading through this wall (

Currently the site doesn't support hovering over cards to see them, and adding images for every card for an article of this magnitude probably wouldn't look the best, but we'll explore options in the future to try and make this less of an issue.


Although I preferred the video form, but I guess this is easier to digest for a newbie, so that's cool too!!

A fun thing to do

A fun thing to do

When your opponent has two cards left, play Gentleman Jim Stacey. Then, whatever they give to you, Barter it back to them and take the card they didn’t want you to have. Choice is an illusion, free will is a lie.

Yeah, but you have optimal fun.

u/justinlarson please make this stupid video

Calm down there Satan


After seeing almost no Mantikora this week

After seeing almost no Mantikora this week

Unfortunately none of them can fill the void left behind Mantikora. Sadpanda

This meme is legit lol. I have had much success replacing him with treachery. I do miss the guard part, but with that gone stealing > 6/6 body.

I still meet people who use mantikora, like even more than b4 now.

It’s a big dumb 8/8 guard that keeps you from Tazkad lethal :)

Pro vs Regular Player's Profiles

Pro vs Regular Player's Profiles

This is quite possibly the most relatable post I've ever seen on here. Except for the avatar and title that is.

Okay, can we all just appreciate how much effort all this probably took to make.

I am also always having troubles with the "summon 5 mudcrabs" quest

newb vrigin vs legends chad

I made a shitty meme

I made a shitty meme

The phrase is "AE GHARTOK PADHOME CHIM AE ALTADOON." It's an Ehlnofex phrase that pops up in the fifteenth sermon of Vivec's 36 Lessons, which are known for being very, very weird and very, very symbolic. No, we still don't know why the College of Winterhold chants it, since the College and Vivec don't have anything to do with each other.

I actually thought it was a really cool sound, does get repetitive though

d e e p l o r e

It's not a phrase that exclusively relates to Vivec. It roughly translates to "I am the Hand(s) of Padhome, CHIM is my weapon". Padhome being the primordial force of change/chaos, and CHIM being a special transcendental state of being.

Hive Offender's Thoughts: Mantikora

Hive Offender's Thoughts: Mantikora

Mantikora was recently nerfed, losing its guard ability. Now, I am not a card designer [yet] but I once took midrange warrior to rank 2 and have strong opinions on this nerf and will articulate them well.

The first time I heard the Backstreet Boys was in the waning days of summer in 1997. I was cruising down the street in my 64, changing stations mindlessly and daydreaming about a girl named Sandoz when I reached KCRP, the top 40 station.


I was intrigued. I’m everybody, I supposed.


Yes, I thought. Tell me more.

Backstreet’s Back.



Alright indeed!

How had I never heard about these young men? I trolled back streets, I should know about them. And yet, here they were, proudly announcing that they were back. They were back, and the first time they were here, I HAD MISSED THEM ENTIRELY.

The song continued and I lost my ability to navigate the busy streets of Skyrim. I swerved off the road and I hit a Riften Lawkeeper. Smoke flooded from the crumpled hood of my car but the beat went on and on. It wasn’t just the concussion, I was transfixed by the perfect harmonies and, I assumed, amazing corresponding dance moves. The Lawkeeper was pinned between my car and Jarl Balgruuf’s wall and was moaning loudly, but not even his death rattle could interfere with my joy at that moment.

I pushed open the car door awkwardly and stumbled onto my feet, noxious gasoline fumes overwhelming every one of my senses but one. My ears were still transfixed.



Rock your bodddddddddy.


Yeah. I knew what I needed to do. There were more Lawkeepers on the way, and I needed time to continue to get my groove on. As a general rule I try not to increase my bounty in the provinces of Skyrim but desperate times conjured desperate measures. I had 10 magicka, so there was only one move.

I summoned Mantikora. It ferociously devoured the Lawkeeper leading the charge, and I turned back to the car to enjoy the rest of my music.

The problem with the Mantikora nerf is that if it had happened back in 1997, I wouldn’t have gotten to finish listening to the song. The cops would have reached me before it ended, and I probably would have spent the rest of my life in prison instead of dedicating my life to being a Backstreet Boys groupie. And that, my friends, is unacceptable.

Leave some karma for the rest of us, Justin

it is my understanding that bands like 98 Degrees exist to serve as draft fodder and to show the difference between good bands and bad bands so players get better

personal opinion, nsync was better

mantikora just went bye bye bye

It’s official, the whole Jiub situation has driven Justin off the rails.

Honest Morrowind Cards

Honest Morrowind Cards

omg i choked when i got to lich's ascension

More like Lich's Descension

Lich's Depression :(

Blue Claw Matron should have "Summon: feel bad for artist that created the art for Blue Claw Matron because the card might as well not exist otherwise"

All of these are so good. Nice work Szoty!

Try one of these subthreads