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Cube Tutor provides Blogging for updates to your cube, Analysis to give you deeper insight and Drafting just for fun!
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Cuesbey's Charm Cube What would be needed for all the shard/khans charms to be in demand? Here you're building 3-color decks that emphasize synergy/flexibility over raw power.

devblog  Bug Fix Release: Treasure Cruise 1.0

It's been a while since I put out a bug fix release so it felt appropriate to name it after the all-format soon-to-be-banned All Star that is Treasure Cruise! I found out recently that our hosting provider, Cloudbees is to stop it's hosting offering by the end of the year so I will be working on “moving house” so to speak over the next couple of weeks. It'll be a lot of work but once that's done I'll be able to dedicate more time to working on your feature requests so please keep those coming in through the usual channels. So without further adieu, I present Treasure Cruise 1.0

  • All card images now hosted by MTGImage.com – A few months ago we made the transition to MTGImage.com for all of CubeTutor's non-promo images. Since then, Robert at MTGImage has been working his butt off and they're now in a position to host all of the card images that we need for CubeTutor including all promo's. This is great news because it is a lot easier to add new cards to the site now, meaning the delay between set release and CubeTutor updating should be very small, or even non-existent. To anyone out there who's developing an app that needs card images, look no further than MTGImage.com (and accompanying MTGJson.com), it is awesome.
  • Fixed Multiple Decks Saving bug – A lot of you guys have reported this one over the last few months. You'll save a deck through the Deck Builder and it will be saved 10+ times. This was a very annoying issue to track down, and it ended up being specific to IE 10 & 11. It's now fixed, and most of the extra decks have been deleted from the database.
  • Reworked Cube Index – If you've seen the 502 Bad Gateway error in the last month you'll know why we had to do this. In order to calculate activity scores, the Index page had to load every cube on the site and compare them to work out which were the “most active”. This was fine when we had 500 cubes, but now that we have getting on for 20,000 it is no longer feasible. The heavy lifting required was causing the site to periodically slow down and occasionally crash all together. The Cube Index has now been replaced with separate Average Cubes, Most Drafted Cubes and Search pages. Unfortunately this has been at the cost of the Activity Score, and the ability to filter by properties. The former probably won't come back, but I'm working on adding the latter to the Search page. In the mean time you've now got a bunch of new ways to search for cubes on the site including by 'Contains Card(s)'.
  • Restyled Menus – The look and feel has changed quite a bit. In addition
    • All Cube Index pages can now be found under 'Community'.
    • FAQ, Contact and Donate can be found under 'About'.
    • When logged in, you can logout using the cog icon in the new username panel.
    • When logged in and viewing one of your own cubes, you can switch to your other cubes in the cube sub menu.
    • When logged in, View, Edit and Bulk Upload can be found under the 'List' sub menu item.
  • Khans of Tarkir Clan Names – These now replace the old Apocalypse era names for the 3 colour wedge combinations, everywhere on the site. I also fixed the name of the 4-Colour combination “Glint Eye”, previously “Giant Eye” - thanks Henry who got in touch about that.
  • Added missing promos – From Game Day, FNM, Judge, Media Inserts, Prereleases, Launch Parties, SDCC and WMCQ. Thanks again MTGImage.com.
If you have any questions, comments, bugs or feature requests, then please get in touch.

devblog  M15 update and new image source

M15 is live! Don't forget to check out the Top Cards By Set page to see which cards people are adding. We decided to change our source of non-promo images for this release. For the past year we've been relying on MagicCards.info to give us all of the card information for new sets, and Wizard's "general" URL for the actual images. That all changed today thanks to MTGJson.com and MTGImage.com. These great projects simplify the whole process of adding new sets and it'll mean much faster updates for Cube Tutor. If you are working on an MTG website or app I can't recommend them enough. As this is a new image source, there is a small chance some card images could be missing. If you notice any problems, then don't hesitate to get in touch. Enjoy the update and we look forward to drafting your M15-enabled cubes!

devblog  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!

devblog  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.

devblog  Maintenance Update - 23/04

We've had quite a few reports recently that Cube Tutor has been running fairly slow during peak periods. This is due to a increase in traffic (awesome!) combined with a server infrastructure that could probably do with being upgraded (damn!). Unfortunately it costs quite a bit to run a live server and we don't yet have the means to upgrade it. However we are currently working very hard on the next major functional release that will give you guys the ability to support Cube Tutor financially through something a bit more than donations whilst giving you some cool stuff in return :). More on that in a future update.

Thankfully however there is still quite a bit that can be done without upgrading the server, so hopefully we should see an improvement after this release. Nothing has changed from a functionality point of view but we would be interested to hear if you experience problems on the Cube Index, Draft or View List pages as these have changed the most under the covers.

In addition:

As ever we love to read your comments, ideas, suggestions, cube stories! Please get in touch: http://www.cubetutor.com/contact