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This Week in Legacy: Player Spotlight Series - The Dragon's Rage Channeler


Howdy folks! It's time yet again for another edition of This Week in Legacy! I'm your host, Joe Dyer, and this week we've got yet another fun Player Spotlight Series, with our good friend Roland Chang joining us! In addition to that we've got some sweet MTGO news that came out after last week's article got posted, some Challenge info, and a Super Qualifier from over the weekend!

Without further ado, let's dive right in!

Player Spotlight Series: Roland Chang

We've got yet another sweet Player Spotlight this month, and this go around we're talking to the one and only Roland Chang! Roland is a well known player in the Legacy community, having won several awesome events and being generally involved with entities such as 90sMTG and TOAMagic. As we always like to do with these, let's give Roland the stage and introduce himself!

Intro

Hi, my name is Roland Chang - Eternal specialist, 2005 Vintage & 2006 Legacy World Champion. I'm deeply involved in community building for Eternal constructed formats in the NYC area, connecting with players from all over the world, while competing or vending at most major paper Magic events. The formats I'm focused on include Legacy, Vintage, Premodern, and Old School.

My Magic History

I grew up in Northeast Ohio and started playing Magic in 1995 at the end of Ice Age, with Alliances being my first set release. On a monthly basis, I read Inquest Magazine to keep me informed on strategy, pricing, and to some extent forecasting the spoiler news of the next set. Admittedly, it wasn't until my freshman year at Miami University that I learned how combat damage worked on the stack via 6th Edition rules. Prior to that, I played the game rather poorly.

After years of playtesting in college and a formative summer at NYC's Neutral Ground, I took down the 2005 Vintage Championships. I piloted 5C Stax and brought home an Ancestral Recall painting. Less than a year later, disaster struck and I had most of my collection stolen, including cards I was transporting for a teammate. Luckily, community friends let me borrow UG Madness so I could still compete at GenCon. Instead of a trophy or painting, the 2006 Legacy Championships prize was a playset of 40 Revised dual lands. After an emotional victory, I sold those duals to help fund and repay my teammate for his lost Power 9 cards.

By December of 2007, I sold out and quit playing to prioritize my professional career and escape the constant reminders about the terrible theft incident. Six years later, friends within the Vintage community dragged me out of retirement, fueled by the idea that Mishra's Workshops were good again. I even tried rebuilding Legacy UG Madness, but quickly realized the power of Deathrite Shaman and Delver of Secrets. And so began the next chapter of my Magic career and collection.

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Today and Future Plans

This September marks a decade back in the game, competing at the highest level possible, winning and losing, but mostly having fun along the way. The NYC Eternal Magic scene remains stronger than ever and we continue to be a major breeding ground for community-organized formats such as Old School and Premodern. On average, I play twice a week, either in Queens at Gamestoria's Monday night weekly Legacy, or on weekends at larger tournaments along the East Coast. I even credit NYC's own Chris Banuchi at @90sMTG (https://www.twitch.tv/90smtg) for keeping my game sharp through his relentless streaming, sharp camerawork, and commentary.

My current Legacy decks of choice are UR Delver and Yorion Death & Taxes. In Vintage, I stick to Workshops and BUG Control. As for Premodern, I have Sligh, UG Madness, Patriot Aggro, and Stiflenought built and ready to jam. Also, I probably spend way too much time hunting down Japanese Foil cards, often tweeting (@RolandMTG) updates about my latest acquisitions. If I'm not playing, I can usually be found vending at large events all over the country for TOAMagic. While Magic isn't my profession, it's been my life's passion, so I'm honored to share my personal history with this awesome community.

MTGO News - The Hamster is Here!

The biggest news of the past week in addition to the release of Dominaria United was the fact that MTGO made some huge quality of life improvements in the same patch as DMU. The largest part of this announcement was the advent of the release of cards from Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur's Gate and previous Commander sets onto MTGO that had previously only existed in paper.

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That's right, Minsc & Boo and Maddening Hex are here on MTGO finally! In addition to these cards, a bunch of other CLB cards and a few other Commander cards were released onto MTGO into Treasure Chests. Chests themselves also received a huge QoL update by introducing a category in them for "TC Only" cards like the aforementioned Minsc & Boo where the card is only acquired via chests. This should help keep the prices of these cards down a little bit in the long run and provide more supply.

Another major update to MTGO in this patch is the removal of "Join Match" button when you are pairing in Leagues. If you haven't heard about the issues MTGO has had in the past with win traders in low population formats like Vintage/Standard and even Draft leagues, this change is to make it harder for win traders to pair into each other constantly which should help this situation immensely.

You can find the full list of all the changes here.

Legacy Challenge 9/3

The first Challenge of this past weekend was the early morning Saturday event, which was happening at the same time as the Super Qualifier. Even still, it got 46 players thanks to data collected by the Legacy Data Collection Project.

You can find the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Delver did quite well here in both representation and win rates, as did Painter and Reanimator. Painter did exceedingly well given that it only had two players and both made the Top 8.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
UR Delver 1st Ozymandias17
Painter 2nd dani_tb
UR Delver 3rd ekulking
UR Delver 4th Oceansoul92
Painter 5th samus_ssp
8Cast 6th John1111
Red Stompy 7th Mogged
Reanimator 8th golphinus

Quite a bit going on here with Delver and Painter for sure, so we're going to look at those two decks primarily. At the end of the event it was Delver that won in the hands of our good friend Matthew Vook.

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No "Delver" exactly here, with Ledger Shredder instead. Very clean list and a nice split between Unholy Heat and Lightning Bolt here. Solid list for sure.

The Second Place list was Painter.

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Callum Smith's influence is spreading for sure, as this list is pretty much the same list he won the event with last weekend. It's a very powerful deck for sure and the improvements made to it by Callum are very strong. Fable of the Mirror-Breaker here is absolutely insane, and I love it.

Speaking of Fable though, we've got Red Stompy at the bottom of this Top 8 with some new cards!

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Outside of Squee, I had completely forgotten about Shivan Devastator in my Set Review last week, and I will say the card looks pretty impressive for Ancient Tomb strategies where it can often potentially be a 4/4+ with haste and flying. We do get to see Squee here too with no Legion Warboss but Hazoret and Bonecrusher Giant instead. Looks sick!

Legacy Super Qualifier 9/3

This past weekend was also a Legacy Super Qualifier event, which is a huge event. The Top 4 finishers of a Super Qualifier earn a Regional Championship Invitation, in this case a qualification for the first tabletop one in November and December. This event had 209 players in it thanks to the data collected by the Legacy Data Collection Project.

You can find the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Delver's metagame representation here was massive, as is often the case with Super Qualifier events. The win rate of the deck in this event didn't look insane but take note that it's quite often the case that the deck can have a win rate dragged down slightly by the overall field and still do exceptionally well in the event (as indicated by the top finishes in this event). This is one of those reasons why it's important to keep the overall data in mind, and also explore subsets of the overall data such as conversion rate and what the data looks like for certain records or better (X-2 or better, etc.) This kind of data analysis can be helpful to see certain things.

Now, I do believe that due to the fact that we just had a bunch of cards injected in both chests and DMU that waiting to see what the fallout there is like before taking any kind of corrective action on the format, and at the same time we can acknowledge that one event, even a large one like this in the scheme of things can mean little if the overall trend is not the same. We'll see soon in the next few months where Delver sits, but it's more than likely it's in an even better spot thanks to new cards like Maddening Hex.

Lands also did quite well in this event, so did the Riddlesmith Combo deck and Elves.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
UR Delver 1st JUJUBEAN__2004
Red Stompy 2nd xJCloud
UR Delver 3rd mei0024
Elves 4th Schiaveto
Riddlesmith Combo 5th Killabee
GW Depths 6th googly
Lands 7th alli
Lands 8th matyo804

The Top 8 here is pretty solid, really. Reasonable representation across multiple archetypes and not all blue decks either. At the end of the event though it was UR Delver that took it all down.

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Our first look at Maddening Hex in a sideboard here. I suspect this number will go up to at least two sideboard for these kinds of decks the more supply is put out there in the MTGO world. Definitely a very clean and powerful list though. We can even see the adjustment of cards like Hydroblast in the sideboard to try to combat both Hex and even Minsc & Boo.

The Second Place finalist was our good friend John Ryan Hamilton on Red Stompy!

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John has been well known to tout this deck's strengths many times before, despite being a primary D&T specialist, his level of skill as a Magic player with many other strategies is also very high. John is consistently producing some of the best content for the decks he loves too, currently working on a guide for Red Stompy even. This list we get to see Squee again and even Maddening Hex in the sideboard as well. Very solid list!

Also in the Top 4 we had some Elves action.

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Very surprised to see four copies of Leaf-Crowned Visionary here, to be honest. I was not very high on this card at all due to the extra mana investment it requires, but maybe there's something to it? Not sure. I'd be curious to see how it performed really and how relevant the triggered ability was over the fact that it's a lord.

Further into the Top 8 of the event, we had the lone Riddlesmith player in the event, the one and only creator of the deck Killabee.

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Killabee has been on a roll trying different things out here or there, with this list giving a shot to cards like Burning Inquiry and Hullbreacher while dropping Karn as a win condition. Looks like a very interesting and fun list for sure.

Legacy Challenge 9/4

The second Challenge of the weekend was the mid after noon Saturday event. We do know from the data collected that there were 79 players in this event.

You can find the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the incomplete datasheet here. There were some technical issues with this event that prevented us from getting the full data for the event (which will be corrected longer term as we are able to get the data after the fact), so we have no graphs for this event.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Jeskai Control 1st wiky
Red Stompy 2nd Hexapuss
UR Delver 3rd Misplacedginger
Cephalid Breakfast 4th CrazyDiamond513
Death's Shadow 5th Diem4x
Yorion Zenith 6th willpulliam
Jeskai Control 7th jankyb
Reanimator 8th otakkun

Pretty varied Top 8 all around here, but at the end of the event it was Jeskai Control that took it all down.

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This is a creature-less heavy Planeswalker-based build, with the only creature action in the sideboard with a copy of Monastery Mentor. The primary win cons here are Shark tokens or Jace, the Mind Sculptor. Very old school.

The Second Place finalist was Red Stompy.

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The results for this deck continue to be very good. It's definitely one of the more powerful decks in the current format for sure, and it's only getting more new toys to play around with.

Further down the Top 8 we have Yorion Zenith.

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It's definitely very impressive when this deck is doing its thing. It's exceptionally strong right now, and I think it will continue to be very good in the future.

Around the Web

  • PunishingWaterfalls is testing new cards in Red Stompy! Check out the video here.
  • The full VOD for Bazaar of Boxes 4 is on YouTube. Check it out here.
  • NO ONE EXPECTS THE SPANISH INQUISITION!
  • The Legacy Pit has some Aluren vs Mono Red action going on. Check it out here.
  • Everyday Eternal is chatting with co-host Callum on winning a Legacy Challenge with Painter! Check it out here.

The Spice Corner

You can find this past week's 5-0 deck lists over here. With the switchover to DMU there isn't much here this week!

We do have Esper Vial Humans though! Pretty sweet.

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Also, HAMMER TIME.

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Wrapping Up

That's all the time we have this week folks! Thanks for continuing to support the column and join us next week as we continue our journey into Legacy!

As always you can reach me at all my associated links via my Link Tree! In addition I'm always around the MTGGoldfish Discord Server and the MTGLegacy Discord Server.

Until next time!



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