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Vintage 101: Night to Day


Howdy folks! It's time yet again for another edition of Vintage 101! I'm your host, Joe Dyer, and I'm back from vacation and headed into the gloom of Innistrad: Midnight Hunt and what cards may be interesting for Vintage! In addition to that we've got two Challenges from this past weekend to discuss. I'm not going to go into the two Challenges I missed while on vacation; those events are posted on the MTGGoldfish deck database if you want to see what those events entailed.

Without further ado, let's dive right into this week!

Gloom and Doom

Innistrad: Midnight Hunt is upon us and available on Magic Online as of the writing of this article, so we're here to look at this set and how it might be good for Vintage. Let's first dive into the overall mechanics of the set.

Mechanics

The new set introduces a few new mechanics, primarily the Daybound/Nightbound mechanic, which governs primarily how Werewolves function in this set. The game does not start tracking the status of Day/Night until a permanent with Daybound enters the battlefield, and the permanents with Daybound/Nightbound flip based on the conditions listed on Day/Night. This mechanic doesn't utterly impact Vintage much really.

The other new mechanic is Disturb, which lets you cast a permanent with it from your graveyard and puts it into play transformed on the back half. Some of the Disturb cards are good 2-for-1 value since they can do something on the front half that puts them into the graveyard to be reused. Once a permanent with Disturb is put into play on the back half though, if it would get put into the graveyard it gets exiled instead.

In addition to that, we've also got Curses and Flashback back! With those in mind let's look at a few cards.

Cathar Commando

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

This is functionally Qasali Pridemage, but it's in mono white and in a relevant tribe that has seen play in Vintage in Humans. This could be a reasonable slot in those decks, and it costs two mana which is pretty good since it can combo with Lurrus of the Dream-Den. You can't flash it on your opponent's turns with Lurrus, but being able to rebuy such an effect in a format like Vintage seems great.

Curse of Silence

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

Being one mana is certainly an interesting thing for this kind of card, given that it only affects the opponent. That being said, I don't know if two mana is a speed bump enough for this card to be good, especially in a format with Moxen and fast mana like that. At one mana you could be casting Deafening Silence instead, which has seen a nonzero amount of play in various shells like Hogaak and white aggro shells.

Fateful Absence

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

This is certainly strong removal, but I don't know if it truly does enough to be good. Sure, it gives white a direct way to deal with Oko and Wrenn and Six but I don't think those cards are utterly problematic enough for those decks, and a lot of white based decks are Jeskai which has access to Pyroblast. I doubt this will see play, but you never know.

Consider

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

I think this card is pretty interesting and could see play in a variety of things from Doomsday to Underworld Breach based decks. It does a lot with Thassa's Oracle and that alone makes it somewhat interesting. It's also worth noting that this is another great single blue cantrip to put into a Lutri shell that is arguably better than cards like Opt or Serum Visions, so there is that.

Lier, Disciple of the Drowned

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

Past in Flames on a stick is kind of cool, but then I remember that Pyroblast exists and then I'm real sad about this. I don't know that this sees play as long as Pyroblast is main deckable (so... never).

Malevolent Hermit

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

This is interesting enough. The front half does some interesting things with the little mind games of making your opponent waste mana on it or play into it, but then the back half comes back in when it's good. Again, as we noted with Lier, Pyroblast is a real thing to consider though and I am not sure if this makes the cut, but a cool 2-for-1 effect is neat.

Otherworldly Gaze

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

Just like Consider, this is probably a decent card in some form of Underworld Breach pile where it can just simply stuff more cards into the graveyard. It also digs pretty hard and works well with both Murktide Regent and Dragon's Rage Channeler to fuel delve and Delirium so that in itself makes me interested.

Curse of Shaken Faith

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

I like this card and I think it's interesting, but I also think Roiling Vortex is probably a little better where you're really taxing your opponent's free spells. This does heavily tax big turns from decks like Paradoxical Outcome and Bolas's Citadel where they're trying to chain spells into a win, and it does only affect your opponent, so I like it for that reason.

Outland Liberator

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

Yet another variant of Qasali Pridemage just like Cathar Commando is, except still a Human and in green. If there's any amount of splashing green into a Humans base (G/W mainly) then there could be a reason to see this where it could be an additional Pridemage-like effect that also isn't totally dead in some matchups where you want it to flip into a 3/3.

Turn the Earth

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

A Memory's Journey strictly in mono green is kind of cool really. Oath decks have occasionally played this kind of effect in combo-ish builds where they're Oathing into a full graveyard, so having another Journey effect with less stringent mana requirements seems pretty decent.

Moonsilver Key

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

This gets Krark-Clan Ironworks. That's it. That's the card. Well, not really, it gets other mana rocks too like Black Lotus and Sol Ring and friends, and I think it does have a place in some form of combo-ish deck that wants mana rocks in play, but getting KCI is a pretty nice upside.

Vintage Challenge 9/18

We had two Challenges this past weekend, the first of which was the mid-afternoon Saturday event. Thanks to the Vintage Streamer's Discord we know this event had 45 players in it.

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

Golos Stax/Prison Shops builds were among the most popular things in this event, as were BUG Midrange and Jeskai. Shops in general had a solid event with a strong win percentage. Dredge did reasonably well in addition due to the fact that one player out of three converted well into the top tables. All in all, really the format still seems pretty fine from week to week with a healthy push and pull back and forward.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Jeskai Control 1st Diem4x
BUG Midrange 2nd Butakov
Golos Stax 3rd EddyViscosity
Dredge 4th Lord_Beerus
Golos Stax 5th Falkoneye
RUG Midrange 6th discoverN
4C Midrange 7th IdraftTheBeatz
Blue Tinker 8th burrarun

This is a pretty solid Top 8 with a fair amount of represented strategies really. I like the looks of this kind of Top 8 quite a bit. At the end of the event it was Jeskai Control that took it all down though!

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Ragavan settling down a little but still around in these URx based decks. This is a solid list and seems very strong right now. Alpine Moon continues to show up here as a solid answer to Urza's Saga based decks, and it definitely seems to be working.

The Second Place list was BUG Midrange!

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Endurance maintaining a four of across the full 75 of these BUG decks has now become pretty much the norm. The card is definitely one of the strongest printings to influence these decks since the printing of Force of Vigor, which maintains the same parity across the full 75 as well. These are the defining cards of this archetype outside of Deathrite Shaman now.

Down the Top 8 we had a showing by a RUG Midrange pile.

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Haven't really seen Jace, Vryn's Prodigy in a while. Pretty interesting to see. Also the copies of Manamorphose is also very interesting as well. Makes for a nice way to use the treasures off the Monkey.

At the bottom of the Top 8 we have Grixis Tinker also featuring Ragavan.

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Kind of interesting to see Ragavan in one of these decks but it does make a lot of sense, as it does generate an artifact that you could theoretically sacrifice for Tinker if you really needed one, letting you keep a Moxen instead of sacrificing it. Definitely a strong strategy right now in the current format.

Vintage Challenge 9/19

The second event of the weekend was the early morning Sunday event, and it had 46 players in it thanks to the data collected by the Vintage Streamer's Discord.

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

Again, Golos Stax decks were all over the place and with a highly increased win rate over the day before. I expect that there will be some reaction to these decks in the next week and something else will come along to push those back down. For now though, we get Top 8s like the one below.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Golos Stax 1st oosunq
Golos Stax 2nd musasabi
Golos Stax 3rd _Shatun_
BUG Midrange 4th LeoFa
Golos Stax 5th Mogged
BUG Midrange 6th Beenew
BUG Midrange 7th tomo0109
White Aggro 8th AfraidofBUG

Golos Stax and BUG Midrange being pretty much 7/8 of the Top 8 is pretty gnarly, especially if BUG is the only deck that can keep up with the Golos decks. We'll see how this hashes out though, the format has never stayed like this for very long lately and every week is a different set of animals. At the end of the event it was Golos v Golos though, so let's look at both lists.

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These lists are both pretty reasonably the same list, albeit a few cards different here or there, but those are negligible to the mirror match and the overall strategy of the deck. Mirrors with these decks generally come down to mulligans and opening sequences of events and how well the pilot draws. They can be frantic and interesting matches though.

At the bottom of the Top 8 however, was the real spice. If you are reading the Magic Online price of this deck, don't worry you're not crazy. This deck only costs 24-25 event tickets on Magic Online.

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The biggest thing bringing down the price of this deck is no Black Lotus (which is another 10 tickets) and the absence of Wasteland which can be pretty pricey. The fact that this pilot made Top 8 with a sub 30 ticket deck is respectable and pretty freaking cool to see.

Outside of the Top 8 we keep getting sweet Painter lists like the one below.

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Main deck Lurrus of the Dream-Den is pretty amusing, given that it still lets the deck play Tinker and Citadel. Some of the sideboard cards like Aetherflux Reservoir and Kaldra Compleat are pretty amazing. Everything about this deck is pretty cool overall.

Further down the Top 32, we've got BELCHER.

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One thing I like about this list is that it isn't completely eschewing Tolarian Academy for the MDFC lands, but supplementing and using Abundant Harvest as a way to just find the Academy when it needs to. That is some truly next-level thinking for sure.

Around the Web

The Spice Corner

Vintage Discord user notmi is always coming up with some sweet stuff. This time he ported the concept of the Modern 5C Elementals decks with Ephemerate into Vintage! Super cool stuff, since I am a big fan of Risen Reef.

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Wrapping Up

That's all the time we have this week folks! Thanks for your continued support of the column and join me next week as we continue our journey into Vintage!

As always you can reach me at Twitter, Twitch, YouTube, and Patreon! In addition, you can always reach me on the MTGGoldfish Discord Server and the Vintage Streamers Discord.

Until next time!



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