Welcome to Meta Monday! This week we had the ECL Highlander special event, also known as the justice showcase. ECL Highlander Let’s talk about this weeks Highlander event. Going into this event, I suspected justice to be by far the most popular color, and I was not wrong. Justice took this event by the horns, putting 6 decks containing the color into the top 8. 17 players participated in this weeks special event, including plenty of experienced and newer players. All 3 Team Rankstar members who participated made top 8, myself, Aetherllama and I_Am_Monstrum. Two members of The Great Parliament also broke into the top 8, with all 5 of us bringing justice strategies. Top 8: 1st Place: The Joker on Praxis. The winner of the tournament The Joker took down the event with Praxis, not something I saw coming. Praxis in highlander was a deck that sometimes lacks consistency, but makes up for it in raw card quality. Praxis likely has the highest card quality threats for any time midrange deck in this format, and although it lacks removal it may also be the most swingy deck. I, for one, definitely underestimated Praxis, and after playing two matches against The Joker in the event, became more and more impressed. I definitely believe this is the best non-justice currently in high lander. Congrats once again to The Joker. 2nd and 5th place: NotoriousGHP (Me) and Aetherllama on Rakano. I’ve decided to combine myself and Aetherllama’s deck into one section as we played the same 75. Rakano felt to be the strongest deck in this format, as it had the ability to decide if it was the beatdown or the control deck each game without being punished to oheavily for drawing the other side of the deck. My losses in the event we’re to Flippyflop on Argenport and in the finals against The Joker on Praxis. Aetherllama lost the mirror to me twice, and also lost to FlippyFlop on Argenport. Argenport felt like it lined up very well against Rakano, as it had some stronger removal options and a lot more evasive threats, including the dreaded Bartholo. 3rd Place: Vampus on Compraxis (FTJ): Vampus brought a deck that cost more than a new car with his legendary pile of good stuff. Combining many of the strong points of the two finalists decks, Praxis and Rakano, Vampus used his absurd card quality and grindyness to break into the top 4. In this format, playing a more greedy deck can be risky as you have less fixing besides seek power, but as long as your mana lines up you are miles ahead of the competition in power level. Seeing the results of this deck makes me want to consider looking into more 3 faction pairings for any future highlander events. 4th Place: I_Am_Monstrum on Combrei: The final member of Team Rankstar who made the top 8 opted to bring Combrei to the event. Combrei combines potentially the two strongest individual colors in an effort to combat the field, which he did successfully. Combrei offered a lot in this event, and even though it wasn’t the most dynamic deck, it’s strengths were unmatched by other decks. 6Th Place: Jikaran on Xenan Radiants. I must confess, not only did I write Xenan off as one of the weaker color pairs, I also did not expect anyone to be able to bring a tribal deck to good results. Jikaran definitely won the style points competition in this top 8, but fell short in their quarter finals match. This deck tried to leverage its high synergy in order to combat the primarily justice based field, and that’s exactly how it lined up. This is the deck that probably brought the most unknown cards that made the top 8, seeing cards like Voyaging Lumen, Gathering Lights and the return of Vara, Fate-Touched. 7th and 8th Place: Kroge and Flippyflop on Argenport. Unlike the Rakano lists, Kroge and Flippyflop did not prepare together nor did they submit the same 75, but brought very similar decks. Argenport felt like a menace, and probably had the highest “Nut draw” potential in the format. It had enough evasive threats to keep you on your toes, while also having the ability to have extremely explosive starts starting from turn 1 and never relenting pressure. I love that both players did not bring Harsh Rule in their maindecks, identifying that they indeed were the beatdown in most cases. Argenport may be the sleeper in this format, and I fear that if Rakano and Praxis are on top, this deck could easily be the trump in future events. Well there’s the top 8 for this week, but now we need to discuss highlander. I didn’t have high expectations for this event fun wise, I expected that I was going to feel like the games came down to draws to much, but that was not the case. Eternal has such a high power in its cards that many extremely strong cards get left off decklists because theres not enough room in the decks. Because of this, many cards that you wouldn’t normally see shined, and the games were basically never stale. Some games your opponents played Oni Ronin into Heart of the Vault, some games you activated Iron Fist Chancellor with Vanquishers Blade and Ornate Katana on it a bunch with the mana to play the Vanquish, and some games, you played removal pile. The games felt interesting enough that I would recommend anyone who wrote this format off to try it the next time there’s a tournament with it, and you never know, maybe you’ll find the hidden Skycrag deck. I’ve mentioned justice a lot during this write-up for good reason. Justice has been the most dominant faction in a while, having some of the most efficient answers, like slay, or efficient creatures, like Icaria and Tavrod. This event truly showcased the power level of justice cards, and if you didn’t already think justice was a problem, here’s the heads up, it is. That’s all for this week’s Meta Monday, I hope you enjoyed and I hope if you weren’t already checking out highlander and the Eternal Community League that I’ve motivated you to do so. As always, you can often catch me streaming at http://www.twitch.tv/notoriousghp. Until next time, keep brewing!3 Cliffside Porter (Set1001 #7) 2 Permafrost (Set1 #193) 2 Eilyn’s Favor (Set0 #24) 2 Lightning Strike (Set1 #197) 4 Second Sight (Set1 #207) 3 Strategize (Set3 #165) 3 Eilyn’s Choice (Set2 #220) 4 Hailstorm (Set1003 #11) 4 Jennev Merchant (Set4 #169) 4 Wisdom of the Elders (Set1 #218) 4 Crownwatch Press-Gang (Set2 #92) 4 Harsh Rule (Set1 #172) 2 Jotun Hurler (Set1 #227) 2 End of the Story (Set4 #138) 3 Nostrix, Lord of Visions (Set2 #229) 2 Channel the Tempest (Set1 #244) 4 Justice Sigil (Set1 #126) 4 Primal Sigil (Set1 #187) 4 Cobalt Waystone (Set3 #151) 2 Common Cause (Set3 #279) 4 Crest of Order (Set4 #253) 1 Crest of Vengeance (Set3 #264) 4 Hooru Banner (Set2 #216) 4 Seat of Order (Set0 #51) ————–MARKET————— 1 Cliffside Porter (Set1001 #7) 1 Vision of Austerity (Set1002 #17) 1 Nostrix, Lord of Visions (Set2 #229) 1 Thunderstrike Dragon (Set1 #243) 1 Channel the Tempest (Set1 #244) -NotoriousGHP and ThatResolves Use the code “TRS12” to get 12% off your order at InkedGaming.com and support Team Rankstar directly!