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Vintage 101: One More Week!

Howdy folks! It's time yet again for another edition of Vintage 101! I'm your host, Joe Dyer, and this week we're going to be prepping for North America Eternal Weekend with some close to finalized details about the scope of Vintage Champs this year. In addition to that we're talking about this past week's Banned and Restricted Announcement in regards to the health of Vintage. We've also got some Challenges to look at.

Without further ado, let's dive right in!

North America Eternal Weekend - Prepping for Vintage Champs

North America Eternal Weekend is in just one week! It's kind of crazy that it's so close to being here. The North America Vintage Champs event this year is already shaping up to be a solidly interesting event. While we are not close to capping the event like Legacy did over the weekend, right now at the moment of this writing the event has 309 registered players out of 600, making it the highest attended Vintage Champs of the three Eternal Weekend events this year, and one of the biggest Vintage events of the year!

To see such a turnout this year for Eternal Weekend really showcases how much people love these formats! It's so great to see. It's worth noting that this event will be 9 rounds of Swiss, so this is a lot of Magic for one day. Of course, this event is also going to be given coverage thanks to our awesome friend Anuraag Das.

Of course, there are a bunch of good ways to get prepping for Eternal Weekend. Beyond just basic stuff like remembering to hydrate and eat, it's important to brush up a bit on the Vintage metagame to get a feel of where the format is for the event. Here are some solid recommendations for learning more about the format and stuff for Eternal Weekend specifically.

  • IamActuallyLvl1 YouTube - If you're looking for a highly comprehensive and analysis driven look at the Vintage format, alongside some really spicy decks, Justin Gennari's YouTube has something for everyone. There's a lot of great videos here showcasing the breadth of the format, as well as few videos covering the Vintage format as a whole. If you're really looking to understand the format at a base level, doing so with Justin's YouTube is always going to be a great way to do it.
  • Vintage 101: 5 Decks to Think About for Eternal Weekend - I put this one in the can last month to talk about some decks that might be worth looking at for playing in Eternal Weekend. It's still a great lookback a month later to see what the format's top decks are like.
  • Vintage 101: Turkey Day Metagames - Data analysis is my favorite thing and this is a look at Vintage right before the Eternal Weekend events began. Good stuff.
  • Vintage 101: Powering Down? - If you're interesting playing without Power (Budgety Vintage) at Eternal Weekend, this is a good guide to various decks that could be good.

I sincerely hope everyone headed to Pittsburgh this coming weekend has a ton of fun and really enjoys playing Vintage! I am not going to be there personally, but I'll definitely be with all of you in spirit and cheering you all on!

Banned and Restricted Announcement 12/4 - Vintage is Healthy!

We had a Banned and Restricted announcement for a whole bunch of other formats this past week, but Wizards did take the time during it to call out their thoughts on Vintage as a whole. You can find the whole announcement here.

Let's read what Wizards had to say on the format.

I do like how they call out the exploration of the format. This is something I have always found very interesting about Vintage is that there is a lot of discovery and things to do within the format that are interesting. It does make sense here how they've called out Urza's Saga. Saga has always been a card I've found to be enjoyable to have around in Vintage, but the recent introduction of cards like Lorien Revealed allowing players to utilize Lorien with Saga in such a way to make their manabase work is something of an intriguing power shift in the format, one we're unlikely to see go away unless one of the two cards finds a restriction down the line.

That being said, Vintage seems pretty fine right now, and most of the player base I've spoken to are happy with the gameplay. Vintage absorbs things quite well, and with Eternal Weekend just a week away making no changes is a good place to be and to let  the format adjust itself. It's done a pretty good job of doing so thus far.

Vintage Challenge 12/2

The first Challenge of the weekend was the mid-afternoon Saturday Challenge. This event had 64 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 datasheet here.

Initiative was the big popular deck of the event, but its win rate overall was less than 50% despite a Top 4 finish. Lurrus Saga also did poorly despite a Top 8 finish. Oath had a great event here as did Combo Shops and Beseech Storm. Aggro Shops and CounterVine did the worst.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Oath of Druids 1st s063
Doomsday 2nd Clone9
Initiative 3rd snakerman
Beseech Storm 4th onewaygarden
Lurrus Saga 5th juanjo123
Esper Tinker 6th Kenzaburo
Beseech Storm 7th Karatedom
Combo Shops 8th yPrincipe

Quite an interesting Top 8. Good reasonable spread of decks, if a bit combo-heavy. At the end of the event, it was Oath that won.

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This is a deck I expect there to be a lot of at Eternal Weekend. It's powerful, proactive, and has strong matchups versus the field. I wouldn't be surprised even if this won the event.

In Second Place we had Doomsday.

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Doomsday also seems quite good right now as it has some strong pilots that play it well. The Opposition Agent main deck is a pretty cool inclusion here.

Also in this Top 8, we had Beseech Storm.

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This is another deck I expect will have a strong presence at Eternal Weekend. It's new and it is a cool Dark Ritual deck that doesn't have to play Thassa's Oracle. It's got a lot of really powerful things it does and a solid backup plan.

Vintage Challenge 12/3

The second Challenge event of the weekend was the early morning Sunday event. This event had 52 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 datasheet here.

Lurrus Saga was very popular here but its win rate was quite bad. Combo Shops, Beseech, CounterVine, and Esper all had super strong showings. Prison Shops was on the map but did horribly, and Oath did poorly in this event as well.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Combo Shops 1st mrichi
CounterVine 2nd Gn42
Esper Tinker 3rd molomomaro
Combo Shops 4th AlpInco
Initiative Tinker 5th AFX
Beseech Storm 6th Phill_Hellmuth
Combo Shops 7th MyPotatoes
Combo Shops 8th noprops

Lot of Combo Shops in this Top 8, and it did win the event.

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This is another deck I feel could have a really strong shot of doing well at Eternal Weekend. It's the most "Vintagey" of Vintage decks at the moment, and people like that sort of gameplay in paper Vintage.

The Second Place finalist was on CounterVine.

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This deck does have a lot of velocity and if it gets even remotely going it snowballs out of control fast. The downside here is that there are a lot of cards that hate on it, but in this Top 8 metagame it seems like a well-favored deck.

Further into this Top 8 we had Esper Tinker.

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There's a cute and subtle green splash here specifically for a single copy of Oko, Thief of Crowns, which is sort of amusing. This deck has a lot of power to it and looks quite good.

Around the Web

  • Justin Gennari has some new videos for us!
  • Revenantkioku has a video on a Lurrus Vault Key Oracle deck. Check it out here.
  • The Charlotte Legacy League has a Vintage video with BUG vs Bant Beans. Check it out here.
  • Reid Duke has a video on Vintage Storm! Check it out here.

The Spice Corner

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

I haven't seen a Jace, Vryn's Prodigy in a real hot minute.

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Vintage Humans is sweet, but OMG this deck has Ellie and Alan, Paleontologists in it! AND Goldbug, Humanity's Ally!!! AND Dino DNA!!!!!

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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 my Link Tree! In addition, you can always reach me on the MTGGoldfish Discord Server and the Vintage Streamers Discord.

Until next time!

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