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This Week in Legacy: The Power of Art!

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're going to be talking all about Painter! The deck has seen a huge upswing in play lately, and it has a lot of interesting gameplay to it that it's important to get a feel for what it does. In addition to that we had two Challenge events from this past weekend.

There were also two reasonably large European events from this past weekend, one of which was the Belgian Legacy Cup, a feeder event to the new European Legacy Masters series tournaments. The other was one of the larger data points with 4Seasons Bologna with 314 players overall. We don't have data yet for one of these (4Seasons), so we'll be definitely discussing that event in next week's article so as to have as much data as possible in talking about it.

Without further ado, let's dive right in!

The Power of Art!

As one of the more fringe-esque decks of the format, decks utilizing Painter's Servant and Grindstone as a way to win the game have long been very interesting and powerful decks to play around with in Legacy, but the wide array of deckbuilding options for these decks leads to an archetype that has a multitude of different ways to approach playing and building the deck. The power of Painter revolves around this flexibility to adjust its deckbuilding to handle different options.

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Most often this means dipping into a second color alongside the typical primary red coloration, with common color pairings being white (for cards like Enlightened Tutor) and blue (for obvious cards like Flusterstorm or Force of Will). One of the big reasons that Painter has been primarily red is due to the power of cards like Pyroblast when they become permanent destruction with a Painter's Servant in play, but also due to the power of cards like Goblin Welder and Goblin Engineer. That being said, there are other variants of the deck that do exist such as Mono White Painter and even Blue based variants mixed in with 8Cast decks.

For the purposes of what we're talking about today we're going to be discussing mainly Red based Painter decks. This deck has been steadily growing in popularity again and it's definitely due in part to a solid big finish by notable Painter enthusiast Callum Smith, who had a solid performance in a recent Legacy Challenge with the deck.

Let's take a look and dissect what the deck is doing now.

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As a heavy Artifact focused shell, Painter decks have had a number of many other ways to win the game outside of their primary combo win. One of the powerful things about this deck is the sheer abuse of cards like Goblin Welder to cheat in normally uncastable artifacts (I've seen everything from Wurmcoil Engine to Sundering Titan) or using the powerful fast mana in the format to power out effects like Karn, the Great Creator.

Over time, the deck has gotten plenty of new cards, new options, and new discoveries, which is awesome to see out of the Legacy Painter community overall. One of the more recent power house cards we've seen is a card that the Red Prison decks have been heavily abusing in Fable of the Mirror-Breaker.

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It's pretty easy to see how a card like this can synergize with the overall Painter shell. It creates tokens that create artifacts that can be easily sacrificed to Welder/Engineer, and also allows the Painter player to pitch cards to the graveyard that may otherwise be dead or to enable Welder shenanigans, which is all very powerful. On the flip side of the card, being able to copy cards like Fury and Breya's Apprentice is very, very powerful.

This has been one of the bigger improvements to a deck like this, where the deck has a multitude of backup plans that make the deck capable of playing a very strong grindy game in addition to having a combo that ends the game immediately once it's online. Forcing opponents to have to dance around these two roles when the deck in question is capable of flipping their role well on the fly is a very solid strength a deck can have, and more and more players are figuring this out and trying the deck for themselves.

It's great to see Painter doing so well. It's got a lot of strong options for gameplay, and presents a very powerful and proactive game plan to an opponent trying to navigate the matchup. It makes for a consistently interesting gameplay experience and is a lot of fun. I definitely recommend checking this deck out and learning more about it! I also definitely recommend joining the Painter Discord for learning this deck as there are plenty of awesome resources there for playing it and its many variants.

Belgian Legacy Cup

The Belgian Legacy Cup was held this past weekend as part of the Belgian Eternal Weekend. This event was a feeder event into the European Legacy Masters event series that is beginning to pick up a lot of steam. This event had 43 players in it, which is definitely very solid! You can find a ton of information on the Legacy event here, but let's take a gander at the Top 8 to see what rose to the top. Big thanks to Tom De Decker for providing us with all this information.

Deck Name Placing Player Name
UR Delver 1st Sam Claeys
Infect 2nd Sam Dams
GW Depths 3rd Dennis Aufermann
Sneak and Show 4th Phillip Schroder
8Cast 5th Remi Pussant
8Cast 6th Sven Havenith
ANT 7th David Raabe
Lands 8th Renzo Verkooren

You can find these lists over here if you want to look at the Top 8 lists.

Definitely looked like a super fun event and I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more from the European Legacy Masters series. It's definitely an ambitious event series, and I love to see the community put efforts into things like this.

Legacy Challenge 9/10

The first Challenge event of the weekend was the early morning Saturday event. This event had 63 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.

After having a bit of an off weekend on the first weekend with new cards, UR Delver bounced back in both representation and win rate and looked very reasonable here. GW Depths was under represented (even off the cutoff here) but did very well overall. Yorion Zenith also had a fairly positive event.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
GW Depths 1st DNEELEY
UR Delver 2nd _INF_
Elves 3rd EronRelentless
Reanimator 4th snoopy-magic
Yorion Zentih 5th McWinSauce
Bant Control 6th astrozombee
Jeskai Control 7th janky
UR Delver 8th WeareVenom

A lot of control shells here for sure, plus Delver and some one offs like Elves. At the end of the day it was GW Depths that took down the event in the hands of Dan Neeley, a well known Depths master.

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Minsc & Boo has a lot of power in this deck, namely because the -2 ability can be used to simply throw your Marit Lage or Knight of the Reliquary at your opponent's face, which is absolutely gross. With all the versatility of this card I'm not surprised to see it climb up into some of the top decks of the format.

The Second Place finalist was on GW Depths, which prey on... UR Delver.

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We get another peek at another new to the format card in Maddening Hex showing up as a one of in the sideboard here. This list is very powerful and a good example of how Delver is being built and played right now.

Also in this Top 8 we had a showing by EronRelentless on Elves!

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Leaf-Crowned Visionary as a one of here is interesting. I wasn't high on the card, but I can see the potential to use it to rebuild board states if need be. At the time of the set review too Elves was also trialing a bunch of non-Elf cards like Fiend Artisan (and it's certainly possible this is still the way) but it's cool to see new cards see some play.

Further down the Top 8 we had Yorion Zenith.

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This deck adopting at least one copy of Minsc & Boo hardly surprises me at all. It has a lot of ways to utilize the card as a grindy option and can also convert cards into reach with it. Very cool.

Legacy Challenge 9/11

The second Challenge event of the weekend was the mid afternoon Sunday event. This event had 81 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 had quite the representation here plus the win rate to back it up. Depths did fairly medium in this event, while 4C Control did quite well.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
4C Control 1st AnziD
UR Delver 2nd Diem4x
Jeskai Control 3rd jankyb
Death's Shadow 4th el-pollo-lolo
UR Delver 5th BuenosLoko
Reanimator 6th Slatorade
UW Echo 7th MoMo321
UR Delver 8th fingers1991

Quite a lot of fairdecks here. Plenty of Delver, Control, even Death's Shadow. At the end of the event though it was none other than our good friend Anuraag Das who took down the whole thing.

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Holy Yorion Hamster Man! Anzi went the full nine and just pushed as much of Minsc & Boo as much as possible in addition to typical mainstays like Endurance and even old school cards like Terminus. Super sweet list for sure.

The Second Place Finalist was on UR Delver.

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Pretty common list to what we saw in the Saturday event. One thing to note is that we are definitely starting to see an uptick now in Hydroblast playability, mainly because of cards like Minsc & Boo and Maddening Hex floating around, as well as the fact that it counters opposing Pyroblast as well as Expressive Iteration.

Further into the Top 8 we had a showing by Death's Shadow.

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This list is pretty cool. I'm digging the copies of Tourach, Dread Cantor in the sideboard here. Very cool stuff indeed.

Near the bottom of the Top 8 we've got a sweet UW Echo variant.

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This list is super sweet. While just being generically strong with Mentor and stuff, this deck having the Teferi+Kitten combo to lean on is really good as well. Super fun list!

Around the Web

  • Our good friend Peter van der Ham has a new video on Boo Control! Check it out here.
  • The Eternal Glory Podcast talks about Minsc & YOU on their latest cast. Check it out here.
  • The Legacy Pit Open II is less than a month away! Check out this sweet promo video.
  • Eternal Durdles is reviewing Dominaria United. Check it out here.
  • Our good friend Phil Gallagher is now posting Content Round Ups! Check out the first one here.
  • Bryant Cook gets into painting. Check it out here.

The Spice Corner

You can find this past week's 5-0 deck lists over here.

Mono White Dreadnought with two copies of Serra Paragon is super sweet. Exactly the type of deck that card looks great in.

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I didn't quite review Ajani, Sleeper Agent in my set review, but I did hear some inklings of people wanting to try it in Infect. Seems sweet.

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Our good friend Marcus Ewaldh is Finding his own Third Path with this sweet list.

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Merfolk featuring both of the cards that came out of DMU/DMC!

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Jund Aluren?!?!

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Caves of Chaos Adventurer is one of the newer Initiative cards that was added to Magic Online with the DMU patch. No time wasted slotting into a red Ancient Tomb deck for sure.

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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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