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This Week in Legacy: SCG Con


Time for some more This Week in Legacy! This week we’ll be having a look at the Legacy events that unfolded at the jam-packed Magic weekend of SCG Con – the Legacy Duel for Duals event and the Legacy Challenge. Let’s dive in, starting with the Duel for Duals event!

Duels for Duals

Firstly, let’s look at how the Day 2 metagame broke down for the event:

The most notable change compared to previous breakdowns is the prevalence of Czech Pile (and “BUG Pile” brethren, here combined to form the “BUGx Control” slice) which outnumbered the current “best deck” of Legacy, Grixis Delver. The cyclical nature of the metagame is showing itself, with Pile perhaps being selected due to its perceived ability to “outgrind” Grixis Delver, as well as be less prone to rising decks such as Dragon Stompy and Turbo Depths (that have been preying on Grixis Delver) due to Piles main deck Abrupt Decay and Baleful Strix/Diabolic Edict respectively. Nonetheless, I am quite surprised at this occurrence with Pile’s relative lack of appearance in previous SCG events of the year. Grixis Delver wasn’t far behind, however, and Miracles appears to be the third fair Blue deck of choice. In terms of combo, Sneak & Show’s reliable, cantrip-laden game plan remained most popular, with Turbo Depths, the newer non-Blue player’s combo deck of choice, following. Other non-Blue prison archetypes like Death & Taxes (half of the four Death & Taxes players opting for the Red splash) and Dragon Stompy followed. Interestingly, Lands was less represented than usual, with only two players.

Let’s jump into the Top 8 lists:

Deck Player Placing
Grixis Delver Kevin King 1
Storm Grant Paris 2
Maverick Robery Boyer 3
Czech Pile Zane Knapp 4
Czech Pile Sean Griffith 5
Elves Jeremy Seroogy 6
Blue-White Stoneblade Zach Allen 7
Czech Pile Harlan Firer 8

Kevin King adapted Peter van der Ham’s list from GP Birmingham, which he thoroughly explained in his article at Channel Fireball, replacing the hallmark main deck Wild Slash for a Burst Lightning (valuing the additional potential reach it provides) but keeping the oddball main deck threat of Bitterblossom – Enchantments certainly are the way to crush other Deathrite Shaman-based decks, and it also has a bit of synergy with Cabal Therapy. Also notable is the three main deck Gurmag Angler (like Peter), emphasizing the strength of the big Fish in a format flush with Bolts, Pushes and Decay currently, and the sideboard Badlands to better effectively cast fair haymakers like Liliana, the Last Hope.

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This Blue-White Stoneblade features something that I think a lot more people should aware of in Legacy… Another Dominaria Legacy playable – Teferi, Hero of Dominaria!

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Although costing an additional mana than Jace, Teferi has proved himself worthy competition (in Modern, certainly), and as a supplemental main deck planeswalker in shells like Blade and Miracles I think he deserves consideration (Jace is legendary, after all). Although this Blade list is not taking advantage of his untap ability that amazingly (having reactive hard counters like Counterspell would be great, though Pierce and Fluster do a good impression), Teferi does have some neat synergy with Back to Basics (making non-basics active again) and I certainly like his tuck ability as a way to get rid of problem permanents – importantly, he can get rid of planeswalkers, something difficult outside of Council's Judgment in a purely Blue-White shell. If anything, Teferi may shine moreso in Miracles, with Predict and Portent synergizing very effectively with his tuck abilities.

Speaking of Stoneblade, a few other Blade lists cropped up in the Top 16:

The age-old Esper DeathBlade makes an appearance, complete with some interesting options included. Taking a nod from Pile, four Baleful Strix (to punch up on Delver, I imagine) are included, along with a big daddy Tombstalker to fly over Anglers and opposing True-Names. Note that this DeathBlade list is notably creature-dense, making the two Snapcasters quite justifiable.

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Vindicate is also a fun inclusion, though I certainly would prefer Council's Judgment – not hitting True-Name Nemesis is a big deal currently, even though getting a Stone Rain every now and then is pretty saucy. Other Black-White fun-ofs are the Sorin, Lord of Innistrad, though I’m more of a fan of Kaya, Ghost Assasin in that slot.

And here, some Deadguy Ale action! Ever wanted five Hymn to Tourachs? Well Gerrard's Verdict has you covered (well, close enough). Again, some spicy options in the sideboard – Hallowed Moonlight never really gained traction as a sideboard card, but to supplement Containment Priest it seems like quite a reasonable option. Fleshbag Marauder is an excellent Edict effect when you have some useless Stoneforges or Sprit tokens lying around – it also gets around tax effects like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben or Thorn of Amethyst. Gideon of the Trials is becoming more and more common in these kind of shells too, as a card that doubles as a hate piece against Storm and a headache for control decks (just don’t walk him into a Plow).

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I guess Death & Taxes is also a Stoneblade deck, one of the most popular, actually, but only found two lists in the Top 32. Richard certainly has some interesting inclusions though – Brightling makes an appearance! Taking the place of something like Serra Avenger as an untutorable beater, it pushes the curve up a little bit and is quite mana-intensive as mentioned last week… But it’s nice to see someone giving it a shot (and I’d love to hear how it went!). The sideboard of this list harkens to a very old style of D&T sideboard – an Enlightened Tutor package. This disappeared as the metagame got a bit faster (Rest in Peace looked unimpressive against graveyard-based combo when they were Red-Black Reanimator making a Griselbrand on turn one) and Death & Taxes’ sideboard got stocked with more options, like excellent grind cards like Gideon, Ally of Zendikar. It’s nice to see it return, though I’m not sure how optimal it is, especially since there isn’t a huge amount of bullets in the sideboard. Holy Light to is an interesting option to deal with True-Name and small creatures. Three mana is a lot, but I suppose it’s a little more reasonable when you are cutting Thalia, such as in matchups against Elves.

Austin took my darling Bomberman to the Top 32 – congratulations! Interestingly, he opted out of basic lands, but instead utilized a full four Horizon Canopy (although a little painful, I imagine). This adds even more velocity to the deck that I can certainly appreciate, especially when flooding somewhat. I might be trying a mana base similar to this in the future!

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Another great option Austin has in the sideboard is Defense Grid to make comboing out all the more safer. Turn one Tomb, Grid into a turn three combo is a great way to ruin many a control players' day, and makes the Bomberman combo, already with four Cavern of Souls in tow, even harder to interact with.

Legacy Challenge

The Legacy Challenge also brought some interesting decks. The Top 8 of this event looked like:

Deck Player Placing
Grixis Delver Drake Sasser 1
Czech Pile Carter Newman 2
Grixis Delver Kenta Hiroki 3
Food Chain Cosmo Kwok 4
Dragon Stompy David Meacham 5
BUG Control David Courson 6
Grixis Delver Jarvis Yu 7
Dragon Stompy Justin Gebing 8

The stand-out list is Cosmo Kwok once again with an innovative Food Chain list!

Here we see another Battlebond addition – Spellseeker?!

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I’m actually pretty excited not only the addition of Seeker, but also the addition of Traverse the Ulvenwald. Food Chain is great at getting Delirium (thanks to Strix), and this leads to all these random one-ofs being tutorable. Spellseeker makes sense as essentially a tutorable (albeit slow) copy of Manipulate Fate, removal or a simple cantrip. Or Seeker can find Traverse itself! Traverse also does a great job during the combo by finding Emrakul, the Aeons Torn to finish the opponent off.

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Another spicy addition is the Gemstone Cavern, which can cheese out opponents and accelerate out the combo earlier than expected. A little high-variance, but I certainly think Cavern is a little underplayed in Legacy and likely has more homes than initially thought.

This Blue-White Landstill is very similar to a list I featured sometime ago, utilizing Myth Realised as an excellent Gro threat under a Standstill. I do question Terminus in this list with so few ways to trigger it, though.

Conclusion

That about wraps us up in terms of interesting Legacy decks from SCG Con. Before you go, check out some interesting content from around the web!

‘Til next time.

Sean Brown

Email: sean_brown156@hotmail.com
Reddit: ChemicalBurns156
Twitter: @Sean_Brown156

What I’m Playing This Week

Last week, I added Board the Weatherlight to Bomberman – and I haven’t been super impressed. Unfortunately, other than Karn, Board doesn’t find any huge “payoff” cards in the deck like Mentor or Salvagers, and often is just a mana-intensive cantrip. I’d rather add an additional Karn to my deck! I did feature a list with Erayo, Soratami Ascedant last week though… And then it hit me. What about adapting CalebD’s old Erayo Mentor (“Monk Stompy”, ehem) deck with Board the Weatherlight! And so I got brewing to this:

This… Certainly looks like an odd hodgepodge of cards. But this looks like the most Legacy-applicable way to utilize The Antiquities War and Board the Weatherlight… Maybe. I may give this a few test runs in the days forward – it’ll certainly be an interesting experiment.

The Spice Corner

Mardu is a very uncommon color combination in Legacy, but here it is:

This actually looks like an evolution of a Legacy Mardu Pyromancer adaptation from last month, but cutting Pyromancer and leaning on Lingering Souls and planeswalkers as win conditions (though I do imagine this struggles against combo). Oh, and Punishing Fire. I’m sure there’s more investigation of this shell possible – Faithless Looting is a surprisingly serviceable card and Bedlam Reveler certainly has yet to reach his full potential in Legacy.

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