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Vintage 101: Vintage Eternal Weekend 2021

Howdy folks! It's time yet again for another edition of Vintage 101! I'm your host, Joe Dyer, and this week we're all about that Eternal Weekend 2021 Life as we dive into the biggest weekend of Vintage all year with three different events. In addition to that, we've also got both Challenges from this weekend that fired as well. Lots to talk about!

Let's get right to it!

Eternal Weekend - A High Overview

Eternal Weekend is always a weekend that means quite a lot to the Eternal Magic community, but especially to Vintage players. While we could not have paper Eternal Weekend again this year, the digital Eternal Weekends presented by Wizards have been a great way to drum up both support and interest in these older formats.

The biggest boon of these events and having them is definitely the All Access Token, as giving players access to all the cards really helps hammer home their ability to play and test properly for these events. Even if we do return to a world of paper Eternal Weekend, I think having one on MTGO still would be a cool idea and would love to continue seeing these events happen.

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Unfortunately, I was unable to play Vintage events this weekend (a lot of extenuating factors) but I think I probably would have gravitated to something fair in the URx spectrum that played either Ragavan or Laelia, the Blade Reforged as I have been testing with those cards mainly and really have enjoyed those decks and their gameplay style. Probably something like the deck below:

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However, 843 other players over the course of the weekend did show up across the three events, battling it out for the three paintings that were being given away as prizes. What I found this weekend just checking in here or there was that people were simply excited to be playing Vintage, and the format itself is in a great place.

I certainly hope some of these players who may have been trying out the format for the first time will stick with it and find their place on Magic Online with the format, because it is such an incredibly fun and interesting format and I hope that continues.

To those who do stick with it, I look forward to writing about you, and hope for your success! To those who have stuck with my column and who ardently play the format, thank you for your continued support and I hope that your Eternal Weekend was awesome!

Eternal Weekend: Mox Emerald 11/26

Eternal Weekend kicked off with a bang as 263 players battled for the coveted Mox Emerald painting by Eric Wilkerson.

Thanks to Justin Gennari and his team on the Vintage Streamer's Discord for continually putting in all the work and collecting data for these events. It is a lot of work and it is very appreciated by the community.

You can find the Top 16 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

A lot of Blue Tinker shells and that's not super surprising really, as those shells have become one of the defacto best things to be doing in the format right now. Also a fair amount of UR/Blue Tempo shells and a solid variety across everything else. Nothing looks too insane either in this event, and Vintage continues to feel super fun and thrilling. It's a great time and place for the format right now!

Let's check out the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Grixis Tinker 1st Vivarus
UB Tinker 2nd _Pady_
Paradoxical Outcome 3rd Nick_Fox
Hollow Vine 4th Vizzerdrix
Doomsday 5th discoverN
4C Midrange 6th Naoto
Dredge 7th CyrusCG
Breach 8th yamakiller

Definitely a pretty varied Top 8 here, with a good number of major pillars of the format represented. At the end of the event however, it was our good friend Alex McKinley (Vivarus) who took down the event to claim the prize!

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This list is pretty cool. One of the big things Alex mentioned on Twitter about this list is the inclusion of Preordain being a card that really overperformed due to the fact that the cards you really want to see specifically are all really good, and Preordain is good at finding those kinds of cards. Definitely a strong list for the weekend for sure! Congrats Alex!

The Second Place finalist was on the UB Tinker variant.

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The Tinker variants have such variety to them that it really makes them interesting as there are multiple ways to build them out. The UB variants with Hullbreacher and Urza, Lord High Artificer have a slower control aspect to them in terms of speed, but have a lot of raw power to back up their plays.

Also in the Top 8 we had a showing by Hollow Vine.

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I haven't legitimately seen a Library of Alexandria in a while so seeing one in the sideboard here is ultimately super interesting. Also Snapback in the sideboard is a cool answer for getting rid of various creatures that may impact your gameplan.

Down at the bottom of the Top 8, we had an old good friend of ours in Cyrus Corman-Gill on Dredge!

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Always is pretty great to see Cyrus back at it. List looks pretty strong too!

Eternal Weekend: Timetwister 11/27

The second event of the weekend was very early Saturday morning, but still drew 214 players to battle for a mind-bending Timetwister painting by Chris Seaman.

You can find the Top 16 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Blue Tempo decks sat at the top of the popularity chain for this event, as players have begun to figure out how strong the combination of Ragavan and Laelia, the Blade Reforged are in the format as of late. Tinker was still fairly present, along with again a really solid variety of decks across the format and nothing too actually insane in regards to performance. 

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Grixis Tinker 1st abethemage
UR Tempo 2nd swengen
Mono White 3rd jamiewvh
UR Tempo 4th SentientTea
Breach 5th Talisker
BW Hatebears 6th eggybenny
Grixis Control 7th NooxTom
Doomsday 8th discoverN

Again a pretty solid Top 8 here, with a lot of cool variety. Even some hatebears/aggro strategies going on here! At the end of the event however, it was a Grixis Tinker variant by Abe Corrigan that took it all down for that wacky Timetwister painting.

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Ragavan really reigned hard in this event all the way up to this top list where he saw play in a Tinker variant. Pretty crazy! Definitely looks like a fun and solid list for sure. Congrats, Abe!

The Second Place list was the UR Laelia list.

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This list is really powerful. I had the opportunity last week to play around with this list a bunch and it is really strong. Ragavan certainly has some chops in this format. The biggest aspect was being able to more freely use Wasteland with Ragavan in play which felt very strong.

Also down the Top 8 we had a showing by Mono White Lurrus.

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In the right hands these D&T-esque decks are really powerful. They're very mulligan-reliant though and require a lot of understanding of sequencing out to get the opponent off guard and in the worst position.

This event also had a more WB variant in the Top 8.

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Not having Lurrus as the Companion frees up a bit of space to allow the deck to play Archon of Emeria which is a really powerful card versus most of the format. This also lets it get some of the three mana value hatebear cards like Kambal which seems really strong right now against a field of PO/Tinker variants.

Eternal Weekend: Mox Ruby 11/28

The final event of the weekend was also the largest, as 366 powerful wizards showed up to contest over who would win the Mox Ruby painting by Jarel Threat.

You can find the Top 16 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Things flipped around a bit for the third event with Blue Tinker variants claiming their top spots again, but again this metagame looks fantastic. There's tons of diversity in the major pillars of the format, and a lot of cross counterplay across those pillars. It's wonderful to see how much fun this format is right now and the fact that we got 366 players for this event is pretty awesome.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Breach 1st CookieKid00
RUG Midrange 2nd VictorJudge
Paradoxical Outcome 3rd rada2222
Aggro Shops 4th medvedev
Breach 5th lsv
BUG Midrange 6th heartattackmuffin
Dredge 7th D00mwake
Dredge 8th Droogles

The final Top 8 of the EW weekend also looked really good. Nice spread of different decks and nothing too out there, even if we did have 2x Breach/2x Dredge. Still really solid. At the end of the event it was Breach that won it all!

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Ragavan and Laelia here are very strong in a low to the ground aggro-fashioned Breach variant. You get all of the normal Breach stuff the opponent has to worry about but can also win pretty fairly. Seems great.

The Second Place finalist was on RUG Midrange.

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Definitely interesting since we haven't really seen the RUG Walkers decks do very well as of late, but Ragavan is one heck of an upgrade to the deck so I can see it doing well.

Also down the Top 8 we have Aggro Shops!

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Medvedev is one of the more consistent pilots of this archetype, along with a few others that continue to champion the power of Nettlecyst and Arcbound Ravager. Also, who doesn't want to win a game of Vintage with Gingerbrute?!

We also had a showing in the Top 8 with BUG Midrange.

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Grist, the Hunger Tide is a pretty sweet card here. Also really amused at the fact that the Mono White decks are growing enough in popularity to warrant sideboard copies of Dread of Night. A+.

Vintage Challenge 11/27

Amidst all the Eternal Weekend stuff, we still had both our Challenges this weekend, the first of which was the mid-afternoon Saturday event which had 55 players in it. The major reason both these events fired is that they took place well outside of all three EW events really, so it made it easy for players to hop into.

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

Blue Tinker is pretty popular still, but it doesn't feel overpowered, which is great. There's also a bunch of different color variants for it, so that helps break it up a bunch too. This event was smaller but looked great as well.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Breach 1st Vertyx_
Grixis Tinker 2nd Capriccioso
Dredge 3rd Oderus Urungus
Blue Tinker 4th Thiim
Jeskai Control 5th achillies27
Doomsday 6th Enrichetta
POath 7th Shir Kahn
4C Midrange 8th ecobaronen

Pretty good Top 8 here for sure. Nice variety of things, and even some fun lists like POath. At the end of this event it was Breach that took it down.

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Again we see Laelia in one of these lists, the card really proving how good it is at really pushing through the deck and presenting a clock that is fast. Pretty solid list for sure here.

In Second Place we've got another Grixis Tinker variant.

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This is similar to a list we covered earlier in this article with Ragavan at the low end of things here. It makes for a powerful enough beater that sometimes it can carry away some games on its own with exiling restricted cards. There is a Laelia in the sideboard too which is interesting.

Also down the Top 8 we've got POath.

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This deck is pretty amusing as it's basically just an Oath deck that also plays Paradoxical Outcome for the kind of cheese Vintage wins that only a deck like this can do.

Vintage Challenge 11/28

The other Challenge this weekend was the early morning Sunday one which had 44 players in it.

You can find the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the datasheet here.

Smaller event, but still a fairly balanced metagame. Good numbers of Aggro Shops which had a solid performance overall (both pilots ended up in the Top 8), and even a good number of off-the-cuff decks.

Let's take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Mono White 1st grymn
Aggro Shops 2nd medvedev
Golos Stax 3rd billster47
BUG Midrange 4th _Shatun_
Doomsday 5th SingPanMan
WB Aggro 6th mosh110
Doomsday 7th discoverN
Grixis Tinker 8th Vertyx_

A lot of aggro in this Top 8, between both Mono White decks and Shops which is pretty cool. At the end of the event it was Mono White that won it all.

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Dryad Militant is a pretty sweet way of hating on decks that want to fill their yard with instants/sorceries, namely Breach and anything using Mystic Sanctuary (so pretty much all the blue decks). Giver of Runes also seems pretty sweet right now too.

In Second Place we've got Aggro Shops.

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Skysovereign, Consul Flagship is such a sweet sideboard card for dealing with tons of little things, from Ouphes to Teferi to whatever you want it to hit.

Also down the Top 8 we had the WB Aggro deck show up again.

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Having Saga in this kind of list seems pretty gross as well. Putting Archon into play and then backing it up with Saga Constructs and stuff seems ridiculously strong.

Around the Web

  • Solid content from Bryant Cook on Grixis Thieves. Check it out here.
  • Our good friend Brian Coval posted a Vintage video on Tinker. Check it out here.
  • Vintage Monke
  • LSV posted an article about his Top 8 run with Breach. This may be paywalled for CFB Pro. Check it out here.
  • The content machine of Justin Gennari CANNOT BE STOPPED! Check out what he has for us this week:

The Spice Corner

From the Eternal Weekend Archives: FOOD, GLORIOUS FOOD!

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Seriously though, this list is from our good friend Zias who placed 10th in Eternal Weekend: Timetwister with this list. It's sweet. REALLY sweet. Congrats, Zias!

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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