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This Week in Legacy: Eternal Party 2017

Welcome to another This Week in Legacy! This week the big event that went past was the Eternal Party 2017, held in Osaka, Japan. With an impressive 203 players, it’s one of the cap-off events for Japanese Legacy. First, let’s run through the metagame breakdown, courtesy of the KMC (Known Magician’s Clan) website. Lucky I can read some basic katakana! You can find the full breakdown (in Japanese) here.

Otherwise, here’s a pie chart:

Surprisingly, 4c Control is not as omnipresent as expected, reflecting quite a divide between the Japanese and Western world’s metagame. Grixis Delver, however, eclipsed all, with twenty-four players and continues to cement itself as the cream of the metagame. Interestingly, Eldrazi was the second most-played deck by a large gap (twelve players). In equal third with Czech Pile was a boogeyman that hasn’t reared its head in a while – Show and Tell variants. Japan has always been known for its penchant for Show and Tell (it taking down many Japanese GPs in the past) and I think there is no better time than now to be Cheatyfaceing things into play. Although Delver can be a fearful matchup, the slow clock of Pile and the upswing of decks like Eldrazi (and downswing of D&T) seems to leave the field ripe for Griselbrand or Omniscience. Lands followed Death & Taxes with nine players, and bizarrely Aluren, quite an underplayed archetype in the Western and Online world, equaled this!

Looking to the Top 8, it broke down as below:

Deck Player Placing
Maverick Fukunaga Keisuke 1
Grixis Delver Takano Shigeki 2
Miracles Kobayashi Tatsuumi 3
Kess Pile Sakamoto Shinya 4
BUG Delver Oohashi Sho 5
Aluren Tamura Hajime 6
Eldrazi Stompy Amano Makoto 7
ANT Banba Taiki 8

Yes, you saw it here.

Maverick in first.

This list is incredibly similar to that of last week, but with less diversity in three drops (no Rallier nor Tireless Tracker, but still including Excavator and Leovold) and a spicy two-drop addition of Voice of Resurgence. Voice is quite interesting, and certainly punishes the instant-speed utility of cards like Brainstorm and Snapcaster Mage. while being a very serviceable nuisance for any deck relying on non-white removal. Another interesting oddity of this list is how compact the equipment package is. The singleton Stoneforge and two Jitte really show them as supplemental parts of the game plan just like how pre-Stoneforge Maverick lists were. They were all about slapping a Jitte on whatever random dork and swinging for the fences. The sideboard is a rather typical Maverick affair, but the sideboard Meddling Mage is somewhat exciting and accessible thanks to the Tropical Island utilized for Leovold.

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In second was Bob Huang-style stock Grixis Delver, and in third was 奇跡 – Miracles!

This list takes a much more proactive angle, leaning on not only three Monastery Mentor, but also three Counterbalance (with not a Soothsaying in sight). These two work incredibly well together, with Counterbalance not only triggering Prowess, but more importantly acting as an early game lock that can defend a mid-to-late game Monastery Mentor and let it run away with the game. Other interestingly main deck inclusions are Spell Snare (love it) and a split of Counterspells (one in the main, one in the side). I’m interested in knowing when the second one is boarded in… Perhaps against combo and other midrange/control decks?

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This list also has access to five Red Elemental Blast effects, certainly hedging (perhaps correctly) on a blue-heavy metagame! The red splash is actually quite deep in this list, with the basic Mountain present too. In addition to the Blasts, Pyroclasm, Wear // Tear, and Blood Moon further capitalize on the red sources. Wear // Tear is opted over Disenchant I imagine in this list due to the heavy leaning on Counterbalance and the basic red source making the invaluable Shatter effect easily castable against decks like Death & Taxes who pressure your mana. Interestingly though, the mana base also has a Karakas crammed into it. I’m sure this list can draw some awkward blue-lacking hands despite it being hungry for blue mana with the Counterbalances.

Popular at the printing of Kess, Dessident Mage but soon falling by the wayside for more “stock” list, the so-called Kess Pile makes a return in fourth place. Other than the Kess the deck is actually relatively stock though, and I’m actually quite wary of how many four drops this deck is playing. With two Jace, two Kess, and Snapcaster often being a three-and-half mana play, I feel the curve of this list could get a little wonky. Only one Leovold, the highlight of Pile decks, is also a little suspect.

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In fifth place HJ_Kaiser’s BUG Delver once again got a spin, looking more and more like the stock list of choice with its trademark two Liliana, the Last Hope. In sixth place was something a little more interesting – Aluren. But not as we’ve known it. Five color Aluren!

This list harkens to the pre-Leovold days (and yes, there’s no Leo in this list) focusing on assembling a two-card combo (Aluren + Recruiter, really, but these get Quickling + Cavern Harpy + Parasitic Strix for the kill), with light disruption to back it up (four Force of Will) or dorky beatdown as the alternative plan. Collective Brutality does some double duty here as both disruption and removal and is a nice inclusion, but probably more bizarre is the inclusion of a total of five Recruiter effects – one Imperial, and four Recruiter of the Guard. With nary a Red source to cast Imperial Recruiter, mind you. This is quite sensible, however, due to the white sideboard hatebears being powerful and a huge draw to focusing on Recruiter of the Guard.

The sideboard has some really odd ones though. First, The Abyss. It looks odd, but is actually quite fitting if one can pay the pretty penny for it. Aluren has quite a few artifact creatures in Shardless Agent and Baleful Strix, who can stick around  while everything else gets eaten up by The Abyss. I like this as an option more so in non-Recruiter lists, actually, that max out on the artifact creatures and have more Parasitic Strix. To the Slaughter has been popping up in a few Japanese lists as a solid flexible option (similar, in some ways, to Brutality’s adoption), Back to Basics capitalizes on Aluren’s three basic lands to punish greedy mana bases (but can short out white mana for hardcast Recruiters… So I’m not sure how settled I am on this) and lastly The Scarab God. I guess this is just a random big idiot who can not only frustratingly win matches of Standard, but Legacy too.

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In seventh was Eldrazi Stompy, sort of.

This is like a halfway between typical Eldrazi Stompy and “Big Eldrazi” lists, having a full complement of Post lands but no Grim Monolith, Thran Dynamo or Basalt Monolith. Rather, Oblivion Sower is primed as the deck’s big ramp spell of choice, excellent in a metagame of Deathrite Shaman. Matter Reshaper has always looked a little fillery, but in this list I’m sure its role in occasionally ramping is well-desired. And Warping Wail I’m sure is used more often for its Rampant Growth mode than other versions of Eldrazi, justifying its four-of place.

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These Big-ish Eldrazi lists also make a great home for Walking Ballista. In typical Eldrazi Stompy, getting to a level of mana where Ballista can be quite large is very occasional – it’s often just as 2/2 that can shoot down Delvers and can’t effectively be cast off Eye – but in these lists with Post lands, Ballista can absolutely ruin the late game. Speaking of further late-game cards, Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger is a natural tutor target for Eye once Sower has ramped sufficiently, and Karn, Liberated I’m sure can be a menace late or early a la Modern Tron, thanks to the Post lands.

For funsies, the deck also has a combo element in the sideboard – Leyline of the Void + Helm of Obedience for the instant mill.

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There wraps up another This Week in Legacy. Enjoy some other content though!

  • Eternal Party 2017 has coverage. You can find those on Big Magic Live’s YouTube channel as some of the more recent content.
  • The man Mengucci plays the best Legacy deck – RUG Delver! Find that at CFB.
  • Bryant goes through some mulligan choices at, this time against Lands. Find that here.

‘Til next time!

Sean Brown

Reddit: ChemicalBurns156
Twitter: @Sean_Brown156

What I’m Playing This Week

I’ll be heading to Japan soon for a holiday and I’ll be only bringing one deck to slog through the many daily Legacy events held there – RUG Delver. Coz’ I’ll never get sick of it <3 But a deck that has certainly intrigued me always is of course Dredge. Which has been on quite a tear, actually, particularly Online. Many players have adopted Orim67’s Street Wraithing list and perhaps it is time I do the same:

The Spice Corner

I can never resist featuring some Doomsday. My love of stupid trinkets knows no bounds either (I still love a good Lodestone Bauble) so seeing Conjurer's Bauble in this list certainly excites me.

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