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This Week in Legacy: The Ninja Rap

Howdy folks! It's time yet again for another This Week in Legacy! I'm your host, Joe Dyer, and this week we're going to be diving into the popularity increase we've seen in the Ninjas deck in Legacy! It's been crazy seeing this deck do well, so we're going to talk a little bit about the deck and how it functions and why it's doing so well.

In addition to all of that we're going to talk a little bit about this past weekend with GenCon events and how good this was for the format overall. We unfortunately do not have Challenge decklists this week due to the Mothership not posting information as of yet, and we do not have any GenCon lists specifically yet either, so this is a bit of a light week without those results! However, we do always have a Spice Corner!

Without further ado, let's dive right in!

Go Ninja Go Ninja Go!

Ninjas is a deck that has continually seen more and more play as of late, due to the deck's ability to tempo out an opponent by drawing cards and playing powerful proactive threats.

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Ninjas functions around the concept of playing creatures out that can be used to trigger the Ninjutsu ability, the primary of which are cards like Ornithopter and Changeling Outcast. These creatures generally can ensure a way to activate Ninjutsu, which then begins the train of card draw. In addition, a card like Retrofitter Foundry can generate free creatures to bounce with Ninjutsu, but also can develop evasive creatures to push the clock of the game with.

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Between both Yuriko and Infiltrator, this deck draws a bunch of cards, and has the ability to do so every turn. Changeling Outcast being unblockable and also being a Ninja in creature type allows the player to trigger Infiltrator/Yuriko multiple times. Yuriko also acts as a way of accelerating the clock of a given game by draining the opponent's life total.

The rest of this deck functions very much like a Delver deck, utilizing cantrips and removal spells to protect the threats, and using the cards drawn to continually refuel. Furthermore, recent variants of this deck have adopted BUG colors to play copies of Oko, Thief of Crowns as a powerful grindy option. This splash also gives the deck access to cards like Veil of Summer out of the sideboard as well as the Abrupt Decay splits between the main deck and sideboard.

The popularity of this deck has certainly risen over the past few months, mainly due to the fact that people are realizing how powerful and proactive the deck can be. Originally seeing success in the hands of a few players, the deck's popularity has jumped quite a bit to become a good portion of the metagame. Ninjas is a deck that can reasonably play a powerful game against most decks and provides a fun and proactive gameplay style that is appealing to many. This is a deck that can be great for players newer to the Legacy metagame, as it plays two important tenets of the format in Brainstorm + Force of Will, but also has a reasonable learning curve associated with it.

Community Legacy Update - GenCon Online

This past weekend was a four days worth of Eternal Magic, fueled by GenCon Online. One of the biggest and most important things about these events was the access granted with each event entry to a playset of every legal card on Magic Online. This access extended to the entire week/weekend to allow players a chance to playtest any strategy for the events of the weekend.

This was one of the most successful things of the weekend, as it allowed players who typically have never had a chance to play Legacy or paper Legacy players who had not gotten into Magic Online yet. This is a trend that I certainly hope continues with larger events such as this, such as Eternal Weekend for this year. The success of this definitely showed in the number of players drawn into the events, as there were over 60+ players in the Championship event.

Furthermore, the access to every card helped bring to light some interesting considerations of what some decks might look like if availability wasn't an issue. Specifically the biggest and most visible of this is that of Muxus, Goblin Grandee. In general, JumpStart cards are hard to locate because of their drop rate in Treasure Chests, and while that drop rate is improving, there still aren't that many available. Without these issues, there exists a much greater and more interesting deck for this card, one that hasn't been able to have been tried due to the availability issues. First posted by Caleb Durward, I give you Turbo Muxus.

It is wildly cool to see a deck like this come out of what a deck could look like without supply issues of a specific card. I suspect that once supply continues to flow of this card that more people playing this deck will be around, because it seems incredibly strong to power out a card like Muxus.

Ban Watch?

Since we didn't have Challenge results yet, I was unable to update the chart with info on our banned cards, however there is something of an important piece of news to share. This past Monday had a Banned and Restricted List announcement that was made, and while it had nothing to do with Legacy, the implications of this BnR are interesting to discuss, as this announcement was simply made and put into effect. There was no pre-week "Announcement of an Announcement" that was made here, so we really had no idea any of this was coming. It was noted in the article that this was done to avoid having a lame duck style format for a week, as more players are playing through digital clients like Magic Online and Magic Arena, and there is less paper play.

What does this mean for Legacy? Well, it's possible that Legacy bans could follow this same announcement style. It's noted that a poll by Aaron Forsythe on Twitter was overwhelmingly in favor of having no prior notice so I would not be surprised to see this occur again like this for as long as paper Magic is on the outs.

Around the Web

  • Julian Knab's website posted a nice video on a U/R Delver Coaching video featuring James Hsu. You can see that here.
  • Delver afficionado Rich Cali wrote an article on picking the right flavor of Delver. Check that out here.
  • Reddit user /u/StormannNorman wrote a great guide up on the Urza Echo deck which you can find here.

The Spice Corner

Delver Blade!

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A sweet combination of Reanimator/Tin Fins featuring Magus of the Will.

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Steel Stompy!

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What I'm Playing This Week

I came up with a true pile this week to play around with. Suffice to say, I had Wilderness Reclamation on the brain when I built this.

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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 the world of Legacy!

As always you can reach me on Twitter, Twitch, YouTube, and Patreon! In addition you can always reach me on the MTGGoldfish Discord Server and the /r/MTGLegacy Discord Server and Subreddit.

Until next time!

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