Vicious Rumors (The News)

Patch 1.02.00

Released yesterday, Patch 1.02.00 has lots of notes, and I’d like to go over a bit of that here.

No Friends

They have removed the Friends List from this patch due to issues with scaling. This is a huge bummer, and one of the main features people have been missing since the game went officially live this fall.

Historic

There are four main takeaways about Historic.

  1. Historic Anthology 1 is available in the game for 3400 gems. Alternately, you can craft each individual card for wildcards. I went over all of the cards available in Historic Anthology 1 last week, so if you would like to see a breakdown on them, head over here.
  2. The Historic Anthology Event is live through Sunday (more on this below).
  3. There will be a Historic Pauper Event Nov 28 – Dec 1.
  4. The Historic Best of 3 ladder is live now through Jan 15.

General Updates & Client Performance

There are a few quality of life changes involving priority, Sacrificing Food, and auto tap. They have also increased the sideboard time by 20 seconds. They have made improvements to the stuttering problem, but are still investigating memory leaks.

Eldraine Ranked Draft

They have updated the bots draft pick order, so hopefully we’ll see mill less, and the decks we do see will be less over the top busted.

Historic Anthology Event

Event Dates: November 21 – November 24
Entry Fee: 200 Gems or 1000 Gold
Format: Best-of-one Historic (Nexus of Fate is banned.)
Event Record: Rewards up to 5 wins, losses are not counted

Rewards:

  • 5 Wins: Card Style of Fauna Shaman
  • 4 Wins: Card style of Hypnotic Specter
  • 3 Wins: Card style of Serra Ascendant
  • 2 Wins: Card style of Goblin Matron
  • 1 Win: Card style of Treasure Hunt

Note: While the rewards can only be earned once, you can keep playing! Additional games will count towards quest progression as well as Weekly and Daily Win rewards

Banned Announcement

To no surprise, Monday WotC announced Oko, Thief of Crowns is banned in Standard, along with Once Upon a Time and Veil of Summer. These bannings were to deal with the overwhelming presence of Green in the meta. Judging from the breakdown at the Twitch Rivals tournament following the bans, it seems to have mostly worked. These three cards join Field of the Dead, which was banned in October.

If you had any of these cards before the ban was announced, you will receive wildcards as compensation when you log in!

Twitch Rivals Tournament

Twitch Rivals hosted a 275 player tournament through Arena that started Tuesday to celebrate Monday’s bannings. The tournament registration was only open to Twitch partners and affiliates, and features a wide range of competitors from streamers relatively unknown in the broader MTG community all the way up to top MPL players.

The tournament had total prizing of $75,000, paying all the way down to 128th place, giving it a much higher EV than Grand Prix events in paper Magic.

Day 1 of the tournament saw 6 rounds of swiss. To be considered for prizes, players had to play to 3 losses or 6 games total, whichever came first. At the end of the day there were 4 undefeated players.

Sandoiche on Jund Cat Combo
Runeclawbarich on Mono Red
ZviMowshowitz on Jeskai Fires
Fernanditouh on Rakdos Knights

Day two saw a strong Top 32, with a diverse field of 18 different decks.

  • Jeskai Fires (7)
  • Jund Sacrifice (3)
  • Rakdos Knights (3)
  • Golgari Adventures (3)
  • Mono Red (2)
  • Rakdos Sacrifice (2)
  • Mono Black Sacrifice
  • Gruul Adventures
  • Golgari Sacrifice
  • Simic Flash
  • Izzet Flash
  • Simic Ramp
  • Esper Control
  • UW Control
  • Mono White
  • UR Phoenix
  • Mono Blue
  • Temur Reclamation

Robert Taylor (@fireshoes on twitter) crunched the numbers.

The finals came down to Mike Sigrist taking the win with Golgari Food against Matheus Yanagiura (Sandoiche) on Jund Cat Combo.

Congratulations to Mike Sigrist for taking this one down!

Mastery Calculator

MTGA Zone updated their Mastery Calculator so you can check to see where you stand in relation to your goal on the Mastery Pass.

Folio of Fancies (The Decks)

I wanted to show off a few of the decks from this week’s Twitch Rivals event. These are decks I think it’s important for the community to be aware of moving forward. I kept my eye out for a fun non-Fires Grixis list, but unless I missed one, there were none to be found.

Mono Red (Top 32)

from Aaron Barich

Deck
4 Fervent Champion (ELD) 124
4 Scorch Spitter (M20) 159
4 Shock (M20) 160
4 Rimrock Knight (ELD) 137
4 Runaway Steam-Kin (GRN) 115
2 Lava Coil (GRN) 108
4 Bonecrusher Giant (ELD) 115
4 Light Up the Stage (RNA) 107
3 Slaying Fire (ELD) 143
2 Chandra, Acolyte of Flame (M20) 126
2 Torbran, Thane of Red Fell (ELD) 147
2 Experimental Frenzy (GRN) 99
18 Mountain (ROE) 242 
3 Castle Embereth (ELD) 239

Sideboard
4 Embereth Shieldbreaker (ELD) 122
3 Fry (M20) 140
2 Lava Coil (GRN) 108
2 Chandra, Acolyte of Flame (M20) 126
2 Experimental Frenzy (GRN) 99
2 Torbran, Thane of Red Fell (ELD) 147

After having an undefeated day 1 in the Twitch Rivals event, Aaron Barich’s Mono Red deck fell in round 1 of the single elimination Top 32. But what we can gather from this is a strong starting point for everyone’s most beloved archetype.

Esper Control (Top 32)

from Jason Williamson

Deck
2 Dovin's Veto (WAR) 193
1 Despark (WAR) 190
4 Thought Erasure (GRN) 206
3 Tyrant's Scorn (WAR) 225
2 Murderous Rider (ELD) 97
4 Teferi, Time Raveler (WAR) 221
3 Mortify (RNA) 192
2 Oath of Kaya (WAR) 209
4 Basilica Bell-Haunt (RNA) 156
2 Chemister's Insight (GRN) 32
4 Kaya's Wrath (RNA) 187
1 Command the Dreadhorde (WAR) 82
2 Liliana, Dreadhorde General (WAR) 97
1 Castle Ardenvale (ELD) 238
4 Hallowed Fountain (RNA) 251
4 Godless Shrine (RNA) 248
4 Temple of Silence (M20) 256
4 Watery Grave (GRN) 259
4 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
2 Plains (ANA) 56
1 Island (ANA) 57
2 Swamp (ANA) 58

Sideboard
2 Devout Decree (M20) 13
3 Noxious Grasp (M20) 110
2 The Elderspell (WAR) 89
1 Dovin's Veto (WAR) 193
1 Cry of the Carnarium (RNA) 70
2 Kaya, Orzhov Usurper (RNA) 186
2 Enter the God-Eternals (WAR) 196
2 Ethereal Absolution (RNA) 170

Jason Williamson piloted this Esper Control list to a 5-1 day 1 finish, losing only to Aaron Barich and the previous Mono Red deck in the round 6. What we’re seeing here is a list very similar to what was around the six months prior to rotation. On day 2, Jason lost in the first round to the next list.

Simic Reef (Top 8)

from Arthur Lolos

Deck
4 Gilded Goose (ELD) 160
4 Leafkin Druid (M20) 178 
4 Paradise Druid (WAR) 171 
4 Risen Reef (M20) 217 
3 Voracious Hydra (M20) 200
4 Hydroid Krasis (RNA) 183 
4 Cavalier of Thorns (M20) 167
2 Agent of Treachery (M20) 43
1 Mass Manipulation (RNA) 42
2 Quasiduplicate (GRN) 51
4 Nissa, Who Shakes the World (WAR) 169
7 Forest (RTR) 270 
6 Island (RTR) 255 
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
2 Castle Garenbrig (ELD) 240
4 Breeding Pool (RNA) 246
4 Temple of Mystery (M20) 255

Sideboard
2 Aether Gust (M20) 42
1 Negate (M20) 69
2 Mystical Dispute (ELD) 58
2 Lovestruck Beast (ELD) 165
2 Thrashing Brontodon (M20) 197
2 Questing Beast (ELD) 171
2 Shifting Ceratops (M20) 194
1 Tamiyo, Collector of Tales (WAR) 220
1 Mass Manipulation (RNA) 42

Arthur Lolos went 5-1 on day 1 with this sweet ramp list. Similar to what ramp decks were doing pre-rotation, this deck is looking to plow through their own deck, throwing caution to the wind, dumping land onto the board turn after turn. The win-cons in the deck are numerous. Nissa and/or Hydroid Krasis are obvious. Stealing your opponents stuff is viable. Self-mill is an option.

On day 2, Arther made it to round 3, losing to Sandoiche and the Jund Cat Combo deck. This deck had a fantastic run and I can’t wait to play it!

Experimental Frenzy (Jank Corner)

I’m going to start separating the actual competitive lists from the ones that might not be carrying you to Mythic. This is where you’ll find Brawl decks or deck concepts that haven’t been vetted.

Dumpster Diving

from Tom Anderson (@awanderingbard)

Deck
4 Merfolk Secretkeeper (ELD) 53
4 Cauldron Familiar (ELD) 81
3 Wall of Lost Thoughts (RNA) 59
4 Vantress Gargoyle (ELD) 71
4 Emry, Lurker of the Loch (ELD) 43
3 Gilded Goose (ELD) 160
3 Deathless Knight (ELD) 208  
3 Feasting Troll King (ELD) 152
2 Stonecoil Serpent (ELD) 235 
3 The Great Henge (ELD) 161
4 Witch's Oven (ELD) 237 
1 Vraska, Golgari Queen (GRN) 213
3 Island (ELD) 254 
2 Forest (ELD) 266 
4 Watery Grave (GRN) 259 
4 Breeding Pool (RNA) 246 
4 Overgrown Tomb (GRN) 253 
3 Temple of Mystery (M20) 255 
2 Castle Garenbrig (ELD) 240 

Sideboard
2 Meteor Golem (M19) 241
2 Sorcerous Spyglass (XLN) 248
3 Duress (XLN) 105
2 Noxious Grasp (M20) 110
3 Brazen Borrower (ELD) 39
2 Ashiok, Dream Render (WAR) 228
1 Unmoored Ego (GRN) 212

This is a fun looking deck that takes the Cat Combo in a bit different direction. It accelerates the who process by dumping a bunch of cards into the graveyard early with Merfolk Secretkeeper, Wall of Lost Thought, and Emry. Then, it uses the ETB trigger on Cauldron Familiar to bring back Deathless Knights. Or it can use Emry’s ability to recast Stonecoil Serpents or even Witch’s Ovens that didn’t make it.

I’ve played the deck a bit, and I’ll be honest, it struggled against decks with any amount of interaction. Though, I think there’s something here. It might not be this exact combination of cards, but the concept seems like it could produce a very strong deck.

[BRAWL] Nicol Bolas

Commander
1 Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God (WAR) 207

Deck
1 Thief of Sanity (GRN) 205
1 Ashiok, Dream Render (WAR) 228
1 Discovery // Dispersal (GRN) 223
1 Chandra, Fire Artisan (WAR) 119
1 Thought Erasure (GRN) 206
1 Tyrant's Scorn (WAR) 225
1 Enter the God-Eternals (WAR) 196
1 Ionize (GRN) 179
1 Angrath's Rampage (WAR) 185
1 Expansion // Explosion (GRN) 224
1 Bedevil (RNA) 157
1 Theater of Horrors (RNA) 213
1 Widespread Brutality (WAR) 226
1 Augur of Bolas (WAR) 41
1 Anticipate (M20) 45
1 Negate (M20) 69
1 Mission Briefing (GRN) 44
1 Tale's End (M20) 77
1 Narset, Parter of Veils (WAR) 61
1 Sinister Sabotage (GRN) 54
1 God-Eternal Kefnet (WAR) 53
1 Agent of Treachery (M20) 43
1 Duress (M19) 94
1 Deliver Unto Evil (WAR) 85
1 Murderous Rider (ELD) 97
1 Ritual of Soot (GRN) 84
1 Massacre Girl (WAR) 99
1 Liliana, Dreadhorde General (WAR) 97
1 Sarkhan the Masterless (WAR) 143
1 Chandra, Awakened Inferno (M20) 127
1 Ral, Izzet Viceroy (GRN) GR5
1 Saheeli, Sublime Artificer (WAR) 234
1 Ral, Storm Conduit (WAR) 211
1 Castle Locthwain (ELD) 241
1 Castle Vantress (ELD) 242
1 Watery Grave (GRN) 259
1 Temple of Epiphany (M20) 253
1 Dimir Guildgate (GRN) 246
1 Izzet Guildgate (GRN) 252
1 Rakdos Guildgate (RNA) 256
1 Blood Crypt (RNA) 245
1 Steam Vents (GRN) 257
1 Gateway Plaza (WAR) 246
1 Fabled Passage (ELD) 244
1 Evolving Wilds (M20) 246
1 Plaza of Harmony (RNA) 254
1 Interplanar Beacon (WAR) 247
1 Field of the Dead (M20) 247
5 Swamp (WAR) 258
3 Island (WAR) 254
3 Mountain (WAR) 261

Since I can’t play Grixis in Standard right now, I figured I would go ahead and put together a Grixis control deck for Brawl this week. I didn’t get to play too many games with this deck, but I did win a majority of the games I played. So, I present this control-ish list to you. Enjoy ruining your opponent’s day with counterspells and board wipes.

Settle the Wreckage (The Wrap Up)

Quite a lot happened this week. First, there were huge bannings Monday. Second, there was a fresh meta for the Twitch Rivals tournament Tuesday and Wednesday. And third, there was a pretty big patch on Thursday that included the big Historic updates. Sadly, the patch excluded the Friends List functionality many of us had been very excited about.

I hope to get to play some Historic this weekend, and will have some decks lined up for next week.

Big <3 Hank

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