About the Author
Jared is a longtime Magic player who has been slinging cardboard since Odyssey block (back when creatures came into play). He was introduced to the financial side of Magic during Return to Ravnica block and hasn't looked back since. He is a resident of the VA area located just outside of DC. His favorite MTG formats include Limited, Legacy, and Commander. Regardless of format, he prefers making creature tokens. You can follow him on Twitter: @gildedgoblin.

Weekend Magic: 8/14-8/16

Last weekend brought us GP London so let’s take a look at the Standard action that happened last weekend:


Grand Prix London




Abzan Aggro was the story of the tournament! Putting four people into the Top 8, [card]Hangarback Walker[/card]  is still a force to be reckoned with. Let’s take a look at some Abzan Aggro card numbers to see where the deck is possibly headed in the future.


Abzan Aggro Deck Numbers


16x [card]Windswept Heath[/card]
16x [card]Sandsteppe Citadel[/card]
14x [card]Temple of Malady[/card]
12x [card]Caves of Koilos[/card]
12x [card]Llanowar Wastes[/card]
8x [card]Temple of Silence[/card]
4x [card]Mana Confluence[/card]
4x [card]Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth[/card]


6x [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]
2x [card]Ajani, Mentor of Heroes[/card]


16x [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card]
16x [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card]
16x [card]Hangarback Walker[/card]
16x [card]Siege Rhino[/card]
12x [card]Den Protector[/card]
6x [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card]
4x [card]Wingmate Roc[/card]


14x [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card]
12x [card]Abzan Charm[/card]
10x [card]Ultimate Price[/card]
6x [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card]


16x [card]Thoughtseize[/card]
10x [card]Tragic Arrogance[/card]
8x [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card]
6x [card]Herald of Torment[/card]
3x [card]Surge of Righteousness[/card]
4x [card]Ultimate Price[/card]
2x [card]Unravel the Aether[/card]
2x [card]Arashin Cleric[/card]
2x [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card]
2x [card]Glare of Heresy[/card]
2x [card]Self-Inflicted Wound[/card]
2x [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]
1x [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]


Based on those numbers, [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] is a new key piece of the Abzan Aggro strategy. [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card] is another creature that is critical to the strategy. A 4/4 that keeps growing your creatures every turn, with a bonus of being able to shut down graveyard strategies, is definitely a large threat in the deck. In terms of planeswalkers, [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] should not be overlooked as it can greatly help out against the new U/R Thopters archetype by giving you some lifelinking reach throughout the game in order to survive the critical final turns.


The other decks that rounded out the Top 8 were GW Megamorph, Jeskai Tempo, Abzan Midrange, and RG Dragons.


Similar to Abzan Aggro, GW Devotion was playing [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] due to its huge versatility in the format right now. Other cards seen were [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] (again), [card]Hidden Dragonslayer[/card], and [card]Nissa, Vastwood Seer[/card].


Jeskai Tempo is still making good use of [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card] however the use of [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], [card]Mantis Rider[/card], and [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card] should not be overlooked. These cards provide fast and massive amounts of card advantage throughout the game.


Finally, GR Dragons was packing the usual [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] and [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card] along with [card]Draconic Roar[/card], [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], and [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card].


All in all, not an exciting Top 8 it but it does provide us with some data about how Origins continues to shape up the format leading into Battle for Zendikar. Keep tuning in for more weekend updates.



Weekend Magic: 8/7-8/9

Last weekend brought us Grand Prix San Diego and Star City Games: Washington which featured Legacy as the main event, with some Standard and Modern on the side. Let’s take a look at the results.

Grand Prix San Diego

Format – Standard


Magic Origins innovations are abound again! First place this time went to UR Tutelage, a deck based around the uncommon [card]Sphinx’s Tutelage[/card] and the overwhelming mill that the enchantment can generate once the deck’s engine get’s going. The deck only played four creatures in the form of [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card] because at it’s heart it is a control deck similar to the Bant Tutelage fog deck that was featured on camera a few weeks back when Origins first hit the tournament scene. This deck seems to be the refined version, which plays strictly blue and red in order to maximize on removal while being able to continue drawing cards with [card]Tormenting Voice[/card] and [card]Magmatic Insight[/card]. The deck also featured [card]Whelming Wave[/card] and [card]Send to Sleep[/card], along with a single copy of [card]Alhammarret’s Archive[/card] to keep the the card draw engine going. In the sideboard, Fiery Impulse seems good as a pseudo-[card]Lightning Bolt[/card] that can take care of pesky fast creatures if you’re playing against decks like Mono-Red Burn. All in all, I’m sure this deck is pretty miserable to play against but sure seems fun to pilot!


Second place went to Abzan Constellation, an archetype that gets one final [card]Swan Song[/card] before it leaves Standard forever in the fall. [card]Herald of the Pantheon[/card] and [card]Starfield of Nyx[/card] have really pushed this deck’s power up a ton until the fall rotation. Again, we see cards like [card]Eidolon of Blossoms[/card] coming back in order to get the most out of all the enchantments that you need to run along with [card]Doomwake Giant[/card] for board control. This deck seems like great fun to pilot, even though we’re only getting most of the pieces for a few months.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Abzan Midrange, Esper Dragons, Abzan Aggro, Black-Red Dragons, GW Megamorph, and Jeskai Tempo. Key cards from Origins that we’re seeing in these archetypes are:

  • [card]Nissa, Vastwood Seer[/card] and [card]Languish[/card] in Abzan Midrange
  • [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card] in Esper Dragons
  • [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] in Black-Red Dragons
  • [card]Nissa, Vastwood Seer[/card] in GW Megamorph (along with four [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] and two [card]Evolutionary Leap[/card] in the sideboard)
  • [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card] in Jeskai Tempo (which has also made [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card] see more play these days due to the card advantage it offers with Jace and other creatures in the deck)

All in all, I’m really liking the direction that Standard is going! There are both old and new decks aplenty out there, and players have a wide variety of options that they can choose from when deciding which Standard deck they might select for an event. I’m sure that the “top dogs” will make themselves known over the course of the next few months however for now it seems that the possibilities for Standard are endless.

Star City Games Open: Legacy (Washington)


Deck Links
Finish Player Deck Links
Finish Player
Omni-Tell 1st Josh Pelrine Miracles 9th Brian Braun-Duin
Esper Stoneblade 2nd Shaheen Soorani Shardless Sultai 10th Michael Braverman
Grixis Delver 3rd Dylan Donegan Esper Control 11th Patrick Reynolds
Temur Delver 4th Jeremy Denmon Grixis Control 12th Chris Stagno
Storm 5th Bryant Cook Death and Taxes 13th Chris Andersen
Reanimator 6th Jake Moldowsky Infect 14th James Rynkiewicz
Lands 7th Daryl Ayers Grixis Delver 15th Jonathan Morawski
Death and Taxes 8th Michael Derczo Infect 16th James Foerst

Legacy is still going strong, with SCG still supporting the format with large Legacy opens (even though now they aren’t happening nearly as frequently as before Modern was introduced and hyped up as a format).

Omni-Tell took down the Legacy Open piloted by Josh Pelrine. This deck has continuously been making waves in the format over the past several months, since the combination of [card]Show and Tell[/card] into [card]Omniscience[/card] is unbeatable if allowed to resolve. [card]Dig Through Time[/card] is still seeing extensive play in Legacy in both combo and control decks, so I would continue to expect to see the card since it is super powerful in formats where the graveyard is continuously filled up throughout the game. Also, [card]Cunning Wish[/card] continues to see play in this deck in order to quickly grab any instant from the toolbox sideboard in order to deal with threats both on (and off) the board.

Second went to Jeskai Stoneblade, a prominent deck in the format that has many proven top finishes since the deck is able to control the game so well through both [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card] and [card]Jace, the Mind Sculptor[/card]. Again, we see [card]Dig Through Time[/card] since it such a powerful card selection spell along with Lingering Souls to create flyers for both an offensive and defensive strategy (depending on the matchup).

Rounding out the Top 8 were Grixis Delver, Temur Delver, Storm, Reanimator, Lands, and Death and Taxes. [card]Vryn Wingmare[/card] is now a solid playset in the Legacy Death and Taxes deck, which shows just how good a flying Thalia can be along with all the other tax effects in the archetype. Take note, and realize that Death and Taxes has yet another great card to add to their arsenal!

Rounding out the Top 16 were UWR Miracles, Shardless Sultai, Jeskai Stoneblade, Grixis Control, Death and Taxes, two Infext, and Grixis Delver. [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] is still appearing in sideboards and main decks throughout the Top 16, so that bodes well for its continued use in eternal formats. [card]Baleful Strix[/card] is still used quite a bit among decks, since it provides a nice way to draw cards and stop bigger creatures from attacking. [card]True-Name Nemesis[/card] is still seeing a small amount of play amongst decks but it isn’t being used nearly as much as when [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] was still legal in the format.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Standard (Washington)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Bant Heroic 1st Todd Anderson R/W Aggro 9th Gage Mestro
U/R Thopters 2nd Joshua Everly Mono-red Aggro 10th John Melissari
Mono-red Aggro 3rd Michael Evans G/R Devotion 11th Seth Eggenburg
Abzan Delve 4th William Wingler Mono-red Aggro 12th Walker Landry
Abzan Aggro 5th Chad Kastel Mono-red Aggro 13th Brendan Mckay
Abzan Constellation 6th Kenneth Barron G/R Devotion 14th Taylor Page
Abzan Rally 7th Nick Patnode Bant Heroic 15th Lyle Bumbaugh
Mono-Red Aggro 8th Eric Lee Mardu Dragons 16th Justin Moss

Looks like [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] has even made its way into Bant Heroic, since it can provide additional bodies to use all of the enchantments and pump spells on if the main creature dies. Certainly a great innovation by Todd Anderson to enable him to win the Standard IQ. UR Thopters took second place, on the back of the Pro Tour where the deck was prominently featured. Many new cards were seen in this deck – [card]Chief of the Foundry[/card], [card]Hangarback Walker[/card], [card]Whirler Rogue[/card], [card]Ghostfire Blade[/card], [card]Ensoul Artifact[/card], [card]Shrapnel Blast[/card], and even four [card]Stubborn Denial[/card] main deck.

Rounding out the Top 8 were two Mono-Red Aggro, Abzan Delve, Abzan Aggro, Abzan Constellation, Abzan Rally. So, lots of Abzan decks that all are slightly different from each other! Mono-Red is doing quite well these days, since the introduction of [card]Abbot of Keral Keep[/card] and [card]Exquisite Firecraft[/card] have been introduced in Magic Origins. However, Abzan Delve is something new. This deck features multiple copies of cards like [card]Hooting Mandrills[/card] and [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] to take advantage of other cards played like [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card], [card]Gather the Pack[/card], and [card]Commune with the Gods[/card]. Definitely an interesting take on the Abzan archetype, which proved to do quite well that weekend in a field full of crazy new brews. Abzan Midrange has adapted [card]Hangarback Walker[/card] into the build, which is unsurprising given how versatile the Walker can be, along with [card]Tragic Arrogance[/card] as a way to control the board after dropping a [card]Siege Rhino[/card] or some other such threat. Abzan Rally, yet another take on the archetype, is similarly pretty crazy – the deck operates completely differently from other Abzan strategies due to the fact that you want value creatures like [card]Shaman of the Pack[/card] in order to generate value from [card]Collected Company[/card] and [card]Rally the Ancestors[/card]. I think that this is a deck that could possibly survive through rotation, as long as a decent replacement for [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card] is included for Battle for Zendikar.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Washington)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Naya Zoo 1st Jonathan Anghelescu Grixis Twin 9th Nate Balk
Jund 2nd Yoel Izsak Affinity 10th TJ Shillingburg
Goryo’s Vengeance 3rd Hank Zhong Goryo’s Vengeance 11th Christopher Calhoun
Grixis Delver 4th Justin Ouimette Jund 12th Michael Baller
G/W Auras 5th Ellen Cantor Affinity 13th Aaron Webster
Affinity 6th Steven Curran Jr Mono-White Aggro 14th John Gniadek
Jund 7th Chris Hair Affinity 15th Alex Majlaton
W/B Hate Bears 8th Anthony Williams Dredgevine 16th Michael Woolwine

Finally, Jonathan Anghelescu took down the Modern portion piloting Naya Zoo, which is still using Collected Company in order to generate card advantage from cheap creatures off the top of the deck. Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were two Jund, Goryo’s Vengenace, Grixis Delver, G/W Auras, Affinity,  and something called W/B Hate Bears.

W/B Hate Bears is definitely a misnomer – the only strictly “black” card in the deck was two copies of [card]Orzhov Pontiff[/card], a B/W card that used to be played heavily in the old [card]Birthing Pod[/card] decks of yore but was selected for this deck because of his great ability to kill cards like [card]Delver of Secrets[/card] and [card]Young Pyromancer[/card]. Also, [card]Lingering Souls[/card] was in here for value. Other than this, it was basically a Modern version of Death and Taxes, playing cards like [card]Serra Avenger[/card], Thalia, [card]Aven Mindcensor[/card], [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card], and [card]Aether Vial[/card]. Definitely an interesting take on Hate Bears, since the usual builds splash green for cards like [card]Collected Company[/card] and [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card].

The rest of the Top 16 included Grixis Twin, three Affinity, Goryo’s Vengeance, Jund, Mono-White Aggro, and Dredgevine.

Mono-White Aggro is the most unique Modern deck I’ve ever seen. Literally every single card in the deck is a one-drop – check out the list to see for yourself how John Gniadek had playsets of everything from [card]Boros Elite[/card], to [card]Figure of Destiny[/card], to [card]Champion of the Parish[/card]. The deck seems to be built around the newly released [card]Kytheon, Hero of Akros[/card] from Magic Origins since the planeswalker is transformed when you attack with three or more creatures, which this deck aims to always complete by turn three. What a totally crazy brew, and one I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of (as long as [card]Chalice of the Void[/card] stays out of Modern sideboards!!).

Dredgevine is another deck we haven’t seen place in some time. This deck uses the power of [card]Golgari Grave-Troll[/card] and other Dredge enablers in order to make use of “free” casts from the graveyard like [card]Bloodghast[/card] and [card]Vengevine[/card]. Also, cards like [card]Grisly Salvage[/card] and [card]Faithless Looting[/card] keep the engine going. Even [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card] made it into the deck! Looks like Modern is still a viable place for graveyard strategies to do well since [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] and other Delve cards of its ilk continue to be major threats in the format.

That’s all for this week, keep checking back for more weekend Magic updates. As always, thanks for reading.

Weekend Magic: 7/24-7/26

Magic Origins continues to showcase some of the potential future directions that Standard could take. This weekend Star City Games heads to Richmond to seek out the direction of the new Standard. Let’s take a look at those results, as well as the Modern and Legacy side events that also were reported.

Star City Games Open: Standard (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Abzan Rally 1st Ray Tautic Abzan Control 9th Adonnys Medrano
Bant Heroic 2nd Todd Anderson U/B Control 10th Jim Davis
Abzan Control 3rd Christopher Calhoun Jeskai Heroic 11th William Lo
Bant Heroic 4th Chris VanMeter Jeskai Aggro 12th Harlan Firer
Sultai Control 5th Robert Vaughan G/R Devotion 13th Zachary Plott
Mono-Red Aggro 6th Ash Durrbeck Abzan Control 14th Thomas Smart
G/R Ramp 7th Adam Bialkowski Jeskai Aggro 15th Robert Stanley
Abzan Constellation 8th John Taylor Mardu Dragons 16th Justin Moss

Ray Tautic took down the event with a new brew called Abzan Rally. This deck utilizes the power of [card]Rally the Ancestors[/card] in order to generate advantage from Enter the Battlefield effects at instant speed. The deck also utilizes four [card]Liliana, Heretical Healer[/card] which means that she could be a powerful force in the new Standard if a deck like this places well at the Pro Tour. The deck also utilizes [card]Fleshbag Marauder[/card], [card]Grim Haruspex[/card], [card]Merciless Executioner[/card], [card]Mogis’s Marauder[/card], and [card]Nantuko Husk[/card] as additional ways to generate advantage from Rally and also [card]Collected Company[/card].

Rounding out the Top 8 were two Bant Heroic, Abzan Control, Sultai Control, Mono-Red Aggro,G/R Ramp, and Abzan Constellation. [card]Nissa, Vastwood Seer[/card], [card]Languish[/card], [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card], [card]Chandra, Fire of Kaladesh[/card], [card]Exquisite Firecraft[/card], [card]Herald of the Pantheon[/card], and [card]Starfield of Nyx[/card] all saw play in the top tables. That is a tone of Origins cards that is shaking up Standard! I especially like that someone found a way to make [card]Starfield of Nyx[/card] work since it is definitely one of my favorite Origins cards because we haven’t seen anything like it since [card]Opalescence[/card] (without the confusion!). Even Chandra, rated the worst planeswalker by many players, seems to hold her own in Mono-Red since there are plenty of ways to quickly flip her for profit.

Rounding out the Top 16 were two Abzan Control, U/B Control, Jeskai Heroic, two Jeskai Aggro, G/R Devotion, and Mardu Dragons. [card]Hangarback Walker[/card], [card]Thopter Spy Network[/card], [card]Artificer’s Epiphany[/card], [card]Clash of Wills[/card], and [card]Harbinger of the Tides[/card] are additional Origins cards seen throughout the Top 16. There was also a hearty helping of [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card] being seen in many of the Jeskai decks, since it interacts so favorably with [card]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/card] in addition to being a somewhat decent command. I think we’ve found a home for [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card], at least for the time being. Things continue to be shaken up in Standard, and I like the direction it is going! Wizards is certainly turning up the dial on the number of Standard playables in newly released sets and Magic Origins continues to surprise us as the weeks go on.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Grixis Control 1st David Fulk U/R Twin 9th Benjamin Nikolich
Elves 2nd Edward Lates Storm 10th Jonathon Mihu
Grixis Control 3rd Kevin Jones Burn 11th Michael Fei
Temur Twin 4th Christopher Lates Burn 12th Matthew Posey
Mono-Blue Tron 5th Thomas Pendergast Burn 13th Phillip Waldrop
Jeskai Twin 6th Eric Craighead Burn 14th Brendan Cevasco
Grixis Control 7th Joseph Soto Jund 15th Ian Rosenfeld
Abzan Company 8th Bryan Moore

Mono-Blue Tron made the Top 8 of the Modern IQ. This deck differs from the R/G version by playing spells such as [card]Treasure Mage[/card] (with a package of [card]Platinum Angel[/card] and [card]Sundering Titan[/card]), [card]Condescend[/card], [card]Repeal[/card], [card]Chalice of the Void[/card], [card]Talisman of Dominance[/card], [card]Mana Leak[/card], [card]Mindslaver[/card], and [card]Thirst for Knowledge[/card] in order to control the game and eventually tutor for a win. The sideboard is also interesting since it includes cards such as [card]Ratchet Bomb[/card] and [card]Aetherspouts[/card].

Burn is the story of the Top 16, with four players making it in with one of the quickest decks in Modern. [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card], [card]Goblin Guide[/card], [card]Boros Charm[/card], and of course [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] are all main staples of the deck along with tons of other direct damage to finish off the opponent as quickly as possible by taking advantage of all the fetches and shocklands in the format.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Legacy (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Jeskai Control 1st Anthony Laflamme Omni-Tell 9th Edgar Magalhaes
Esper Control 2nd Patrick Reynolds U/R Delver 10th Shun Lam
Lands 3rd David Long Death and Taxes 11th Richard Mackay
Sultai Delver 4th John Hottle Sneak and Show 12th Jeffrey Kieper
Lands 5th Daryl Ayers Goblins 13th Jon Wood
Grixis Control 6th Kemper Pogue Miracles 14th Anuraag Das
Storm 7th Richard Johnson Sultai Control 15th Matthew Scott
Miracles 8th Sean Park Shardless Sultai 16th Roy O’Dell

[card]Monastery Mentor[/card] continues to make appearances in eternal formats, with two copies being seen in Reynolds Esper Control list. Lands also continues to be seen at the top tables, packing cards such as [card]Mox Diamond[/card], [card]Exploration[/card], [card]Gamble[/card], and [card]Thespian’s Stage[/card] / [card]Dark Depths[/card].

Even [card]Day’s Undoing[/card] is seeing play in Legacy, with one copy seen in Omni-Tell. Other interesting cards were [card]Thunderous Wrath[/card] in Grixis Delver and [card]Krenko, Mob Boss[/card] in Goblins.

That’s all for this week. Keep checking back for more weekend updates!



Weekend Magic: 6/26-6/28

Last weekend brought us Grand Prix: Singapore, Grand Prix: Buenos Aires, and the Star City Games Open: Baltimore. Singapore featured Modern as the format, while Buenos Aires and Baltimore gave us the usual dose of Standard action. Let’s take a look at the results.


Grand Prix: Singapore


Format – Modern




Masaaki took down Singapore piloting Affinity, which he also had to beat in a mirror match finals. Key parts of the affinity deck include the usual suspects [card]Arcbound Ravager[/card], [card]Etched Champion[/card], [card]Steel Overseer[/card], and [card]Memnite[/card], however Masaaki opted to play two [card]Spellskite[/card]s in the main deck in order to help combat the onslaught of targeted removal and Splinter Twin lists that are running rampant in Modern. Definitely expect to see Affinity after these results!


Rouding out the Top 8 were two Jund, Abzan Midrange, Temur Twin, 4-Color Company, and Temur Delver.


Jund is also still a force to be reckoned with. Duke opted to play more planeswalkers main deck by including a full playset of [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card] and one [card]Chandra, Pyromaster[/card]. Kawasaki included cards like [card]Night of Souls Betrayal[/card] and [card]Damnation[/card] in the sideboard in order to better combat creature based strategies, which Jund is fairly good against already but can make themselves even more devastating games two and three by using those cards.


4-Color Company is reminiscent of the Birthing Pod lists of yore, featuring [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card], [card]Fauna Shaman[/card] (as a [card]Birthing Pod[/card] replacement), [card]Kitchen Finks[/card], and a scattering of one-of’s like [card]Restoration Angel[/card] and [card]Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker[/card] for grabbing with [card]Chord of Calling[/card] and [card]Collected Company[/card]. All in all, it’s a pretty interesting deck that plays similarly to the old Birthing Pod lists yet operates totally differently due to the addition of [card]Fauna Shaman[/card] to the deck.


[card]Sigarda, Host of Herons[/card] and [card]Abzan Charm[/card] are interesting additions to the Abzan strategy. By giving the deck more reach and versatility main deck, it allowed Wee to overcome some weaknesses that usually aren’t addressed until post-board against certain matchups.


Grand Prix: Buenos Aires (Argentina)


Format – Standard




Pascal Maynard, not one to shy away from the limelight through events like the #GoyfGate incident, it appears that without crazy limited opportunities to make him stumble that he just goes ahead and wins the whole event. Nice!


Maynard was on Abzan Megamorph Control, the Standard brew that focuses on [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] along with [card]Den Protector[/card] and [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card] in order to keep the megamorphing continuing throughout the tournament. We’ve seen this type of build before – there hasn’t been much innovation for this particular GP with the deck.


R/G Devotion took second place, which isn’t surprising seeing as it has been dominating Standard tables for the past few weeks. De Jesus’ build included key cards [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], and [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card]. [card]Genesis Hydra[/card] is also a nice mana sink when you generate massive amounts of mana off of [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card].


Rounding out the Top 8 were two Mardu Dragons, Esper Dragons, two Abzan Aggro, and Abzan Control.  Nothing new in the way of Standard here.


Mardu Dragons is going heavy on the [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card]s these days and Ancelmo was even playing two [card]Hidden Dragonslayer[/card] and three [card]Hordeling Outburst[/card] main deck. Both Mardu strategies were a packing a full playset of [card]Crackling Doom[/card] and [card]Draconic Roar[/card].


Star City Games Open: Standard (Baltimore, MD, USA)




Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Abzan Aggro 1st Andrew Boswell Atarka Red 9th Martin Worsham
G/R Devotion 2nd Chris Andersen Abzan Megamorph 10th Dan Jessup
Bant Megamorph 3rd Brad Nelson G/R Dragons 11th Chris VanMeter
Jeskai Aggro 4th Kevin Jones Mardu Dragons 12th Evan Appleton
G/R Megamorph 5th Scott Robins Mono-Black Aggro 13th Brett Krodel
Mono-Red Goblins 6th Bobby Birmingham Abzan Aggro 14th Dennis Weinbrecht
Mono-Red Devotion 7th Dylan Hysen Mardu Dragons 15th Chris Pioth
G/R Devotion 8th Al Spielman Jeskai Aggro 16th Harlan Firer

Boswell took down the Standard portion of the SCG Open in Baltimore piloting Abzan Aggro. Key features of Boswell’s aggro version of Abzan are [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card], [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card], [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card], [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card], [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card], and [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card].


Second place went to Chirst Andersen, piloting G/R Devotion. I’ve covered this deck already so we’ll move on the rest of the Top 8. These included Bant Megamorph, Jeskia Aggro, G/R Megamorph, Mono-Red Goblin, Mono-Red Devotion, and G/R Devotion.


Bant Megamorph features [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card] alongside [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card] and [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card]. [card]Disdainful Stroke[/card] is also included, and [card]Ajani Steadfast[/card] helps to create endgame. [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] is relegated to the sideboard to help more against control strategies.


Jeskai Aggro features [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], [card]Mantis Rider[/card], [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], [card]Stratus Dancer[/card], and [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card] along with [card]Dig Through Time[/card], [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card], and gold old [card]Stoke the Flames[/card]. This makes me wonder if [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card] will be a real card in the fall, when it becomes a four ability blue command that is Standard legal and only costs four mana.


Speaking of which, the reveal of [card]Goblin Piledriver[/card] has got to have made Bobby Birmingham very happy. I mean, he just Top 8’ed an SCG Open playing Goblins in Standard without Piledriver! Imagine this deck’s burst once it becomes a factor. Already, [card]Foundry Street Denizen[/card], [card]Frenzied Goblin[/card], [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], [card]Obelisk of Urd[/card], [card]Dragon Fodder[/card], and [card]Hordeling Outburst[/card] are an awesome start to the deck.


Also, Mono-Red Devotion is a deck we haven’t seen do well in a while. Here, we have [card]Dragon Whisperer[/card],, [card]Fanatic of Mogis[/card], [card]Flamewake Phoenix[/card], and [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card] along with [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card] to generate absurd amounts of mana and [card]Crater’s Claws[/card] as a nice finisher for the deck.


Rounding out the Top 16 were Atarka Red, Abzan Megamorph, G/R Dragons, two Mardu Dragons, Mono-Black Aggro, Abzan Aggro, and Jeskai Aggro. Of these, Mono-Black Aggro differentiates itself from the rest of the pack. Key cards to this build include [card]Blood-Chin Rager[/card], [card]Bloodsoaked Champion[/card], [card]Mardu Shadowspear[/card], [card]Mardu Strike Leader[/card], [card]Mogis’s Marauder[/card], and [card]Pain Seer[/card]. [card]Sign in Blood[/card] also helps the deck keep drawing cards and playing more dudes. All in all, this is a solid aggro deck that has proven that it can do well at a large event.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Baltimore, MD, USA)




Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Naya Company 1st Steven Borakove Grixis Twin 9th Jamal Greenidge
Grixis Twin 2nd Jeff Folinus Infect 10th Nan Johnson
Jund 3rd Ted Felicetti UW Merfolk 11th Neel Sangal
Infect 4th Bryan Henning Ad Nauseam 12th Daniel Will
R/W Burn 5th Lucas Kiefer Goryo’s Vengeance 13th Alex Majlaton
Infect 6th Jason Collins Jeskai Twin 14th Ryan Wanamaker
Grixis Delver 7th Phil Pratt Grixis Delver 15th James Fitzpatrick
U/R Twin 8th Benjamin Nikolich Naya CoCo 16th Michael Kochis

Looking to Modern, we see that Naya Company has taken down the Modern IQ piloted by Steven Borakove. Key cards in this Collected Company build include [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card], [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card], [card]Noble Hierarch[/card], and [card]Wild Nacatl[/card].


The runner up was Grixis Twin, which is a Modern standby at this point and has been covered extensively over the past few weeks. Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 included Jund, two Infect, R/W Burn, Grixis Delver, and U/R Twin. Nothing new or noteworthy to report from the rest of the Top 8.


In the Top 16, the only deck that stood out was Jeskai Twin, which really only splashed white for three [card]Path to Exile[/card] main deck and white sideboard options [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card], [card]Rest in Peace[/card], [card]Celestial Purge[/card], [card]Wear / Tear[/card], and [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card].


Star City Games Premier IQ: Legacy (Baltimore, MD, USA)




Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai Delver 1st Bob Marshall Lands 9th David Long
Death and Taxes 2nd Travis Cowley Miracles 10th Brian Braun-Duin
Dredge 3rd Eric Copenhaver Jeskai Stoneblade 11th Jermol Jupiter
4-Color Delver 4th Ben Rivello Lands 12th John Gatza
Miracles 5th Christopher Hawker Show and Tell 13th Jeremy Bowman
Miracles 6th Bernard Liberati U/R Delver 14th Matthew Long
Miracles 7th Rob Long Infect 15th TJ Martin
Grixis Delver 8th Jonathan Sukenik Temur Delver 16th Mitchell Anderson

At the Legacy IQ, Bob Marshall took down the event piloting Sultai Delver. The rest of the Top 8 included Death and Taxes, Dredge, 4-Color Delver, three Miracles, and Grixis Delver.


Death and Taxes was packing three main deck [card]Magus of the Moon[/card], which is pretty unexpected and I’m sure surprised plenty of people when it was dropped off an [card]Aether Vial[/card]. It also featured two [card]Imperial Recruiter[/card], which not only helped get [card]Magus of the Moon[/card] in opportune moments but can also fetch up any particular piece of hate that the D&T player needed at that time. Splashing red also allowed the deck to play three [card]Sudden Demise[/card] in the sideboard as a great removal option against non-white creature based strategies.


The Top 16 included two Lands, Miracles, Jeskai Stoneblade, Show and Tell, U/R Delver, Infect, and Temur Delver. Nothing new to report here.


That’s it for last weekend’s coverage! As always, thanks for reading.


Weekend Magic: 6/19-6/21

The major events of last weekend included Grand Prix: Providence, Grand Prix: Copenhagen, and Star City Games: Indianapolis. GP Providence and  SCG Indianapolis focused on Standard while GP Copenhagen was Modern. Of course, SCG Indianapolis also had Modern in addition to Legacy results. Let’s dive in and see what happened.

Grand Prix: Providence (USA)


Format – Standard

R/G Devotion took down the field at Providence piloted by Sky Mason. R/G seems to be the top deck these days, with it also putting two more people into the Top 8 as well. Key cards in this strategy included [card]Genesis Hydra[/card], [card]Hornet Queen[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], and [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card]. Pretty much just ramp out into a win condition and take it down from there. Green decks are very solid in Standard these days so expect to see them until the format is shaken up a bit more.

Rounding out the Top 8 were an interesting smattering of decks, two of which were based on four or more colors. Four-Color Whip was playing green as the main color but splashing for cards like [card]Torrent Elemental[/card] and [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card]. You need three colors to play [card]Sidisi, Brood Tyrant already so splashing one more color in this Standard environment doesn’t seem like a big deal especially in lieu of the Five-Color Dragons deck appearing.

Yes, the Five-Color Dragons deck is based around mostly green and black spells however every color of dragon is included in the deck, as it packs two [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], two [card]Dragonlord Dromoka[/card], three [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card], and one [card]Dragonlord Silumgar[/card]. Using green’s color fixing [card]Sylvan Caryatid[/card] and [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card], you can easily find the colors you need to cast these dragon lords. Also, the deck packs four [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card] for fixing and to get dragons in the graveyard back to the hand. Talk about maximizing potential! The deck is definitely an interesting way to make use of all the new dragon lords.

Grand Prix: Copenhagen (Denmark)


Format – Modern

Looking at Copenhagen, Merfolk took down the Modern GP. Key components of the deck included [card]Mutavault[/card], [card]Aether Vial[/card], [card]Master of the Pearl Trident[/card] / [card]Lord of Atlantis[/card], and [card]Master of Waves[/card]. Protection from red in field full of Burn and Grixis seems support important, and [card]Master of Waves[/card] provides that alongside of a team of creatures that it summons upon entering the battlefield. [card]Hibernation[/card] seems like a great sideboard choice as it can completely wreck green decks out of nowhere.

The runner up Hatto was playing Scapeshift, which isn’t unexpected but seemed poorly positioned in a field fuller of faster [card]Griselbrand[/card] fueled combo decks. However, I’m sure Hatto was an expert Scapeshift pilot and so was able to do exceptionally well with the deck even on Day 2 of the GP. Key components of Scapeshift include of course [card]Scapeshift[/card], [card]Cryptic Command[/card], [card]Sakura-Tribe Elder[/card], [card]Search for Tomorrow[/card], and [card]Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle[/card].

Rounding out the Top 8 were Jund, Mono White Death & Taxes, another Merfolk, Grixis Control, Grixis Twin, and Grixis Delver – lots of Grixis decks in other words.

Mono White Death & Taxes was interesting deck choice. It include cards such as [card]Dryad Militant[/card], [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card], [card]Leonin Arbiter[/card], [card]Serra Avenger[/card], [card]Flickerwisp[/card], [card]Blade Splicer[/card], as well as two main decked [card]Spellskite[/card]s and four [card]Ghost Quarter[/card] and three [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]. Quite a punishing deck for the unprepared!

Star City Games Open: Standard (Indianapolis, IN, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
G/R Dragons 1st Eric Rill G/R Devotion 9th Michael Gould
Mardu Dragons 2nd Jamie Kelly Mardu Dragons 10th Matthew Longville
Abzan Midrange 3rd Raja Sulaiman Temur Dragons 11th Andy Ferguson
G/B Dragons 4th Kent Ketter R/G Aggro 12th Jessy Hefner
Bant Heroic 5th Ziang Chen G/R Devotion 13th Jacob Baugh
G/R Devotion 6th Chris Andersen Esper Dragons 14th Daniel Unger
G/W Devotion 7th Corey Castelli Abzan Megamorph 15th Boris Pan
Mardu Dragons 8th Derek Monk Mardu Dragons 16th Marty Williams

In Indianapolis, R/G also ruled the day in the form of G/R Dragons piloted by Eric Rill. Key components of the strategy included [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], and [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card]. Planeswalkers were left out of the main deck and relegated to the sideboard, but they did include one [card]Chandra, Pyromaster[/card], two [card]Nissa, Worldwaker[/card], and two [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card].

Mardu Dragons was the runner up, which featured [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], and [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] as the main creatures. Similar to the G/R dragons deck, Stormbreath and Thunderbreak seem to be the best red dragons to include in Standard decks. With Mardu, you also get [card]Crackling Doom[/card] and access to [card]Foul-Tongue Invocation[/card] and [card]Thoughtseize[/card] which is nice.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were Abzan Midrange, G/B Dragons, Bant Heroic, another G/R Devotion, G/W Devotion, and another Mardu Dragons deck.

G/B Dragons seems like it is something new and exciting however the name is kind of misnomer. It’s the same Five-Color Dragons as talked about before from GP Providence.

Looking at the Top 16 we have two more G/R Devotion, two more Mardu Dragons, Temur Dragons, R/G Aggro, Esper Dragons, and Abzan Megamorph. Temur Dragons made good use of [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card] alongside [card]Stubborn Denial[/card]. It’s also nice to see Esper Dragons still in the picture without being too dominating.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Indianapolis, IN, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Grixis Delver 1st Mat Bimonte U/R Twin 9th Lauren Nolen
Jund 2nd Mitch Blankespoor Grixis Control 10th Hayden Passarelli
scapeshift 3rd CJ Steele Burn 11th Jackson Smith
Grixis Control 4th Jeremy Bush Grixis Control 12th Cody Murray
Jund 5th Keir Haley Grixis Twin 13th Tony Hess
Zoo 6th Matt Ayers Temur Delver 14th Brett Bennett
Bant Hexproof 7th Austin Bates Zoo 15th Derek Madlem
Affinity 8th Tracy Loeffler Infect 16th Noah Strasler

Looking at Modern, we see that Grixis Delver took down the IQ. [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] seems to be the Delve creature of choice along with [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] in the U/R decks that can quickly amass a ton of cheap instants and sorceries in their graveyard. [card]Shadow of Doubt[/card] is also a nice trick to include these days as it can hose a wide variety of strategies such as Tron and Scapeshift, and can even blank a fetchland in a pinch.

Jund was the runner up and was packing [card]Dark Confidant[/card] and [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] as always, but no [card]Olivia Voldaren[/card]. Two [card]Huntmaster of the Fells[/card] were present across the main deck and sideboard, and Blankespoor even opted to play two [card]Fulminator Mage[/card] main deck in order to have a better matchup against Tron and other nonbasic land strategies.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Scapeshift, Grixis Control, another Jund, Zoo, Bant Hexproof (aka Bogles), and Affinity. I think it was interesting that Grixis Control played four [card]Cryptic Command[/card]s. Zoo is now packing [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] along with [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card], [card]Ghor-Clan Rampager[/card], and [card]Tribal Flames[/card] in order to maximize the total amount of damage.

Rounding out the Top 16 were U/R Twin, two more Grixis Control, Burn,Grixis Twin, Temur Delver, another Zoo, and Infect. Temur Delver is still packing [card]Hooting Mandrills[/card] and [card]Disrupting Shoal[/card] main deck, and makes good use of [card]Mana Leak[/card] and [card]Stubborn Denial[/card] to help control the game – even [card]Tarfire[/card] was seen as a two-of in the main deck to help [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] out! The second Zoo list was very different than the Top 8 list. Madlem elected to go with the [card]Burning-Tree Emissary[/card], [card]Kird Ape[/card], [card]Loam Lion[/card], and [card]Wild Nacatl[/card] plan and not play any spells costing more than two mana in the main deck – in the sideboard, [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] seems interesting as a way to help counter spell damage removal as well as provide your own removal spell with a creature in play.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Legacy (Indianapolis, IN, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Burn 1st Adam Minniear Omni-Tell 9th Zachary Byrd
Death and Taxes 2nd Evan Smith Elves 10th James Hess
Ad Nauseam 3rd Caleb Scherer Temur Delver 11th Jesse Pick
Temur Delver 4th Ben Wienburg Ad Nauseam 12th Benjamin Ball
Manaless Dredge 5th Dan Lashbrooke U/W Stoneblade 13th Bernie Wen
Omni-Tell 6th Chris VanMeter Infect 14th Joe Ehrman
U/W Control 7th Jacob Coffey Sultai Delver 15th Justin Brickman
Jund 8th Dan Mercer Temur Delver 16th Andrew Shrout

Burn took down the Legacy portion of Indianapolis piloted by Adam Minniear. A force to still be reckoned with in Legacy, Burn can still quite well in Legacy thanks to the printing of [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card]. [card]Sulfuric Vortex[/card] and [card]Price of Progress[/card] are components that Legacy Burn players love to sling since they can amass tons of damage over a few turns very quickly.

Death and Taxes was the runner up deck and featured [card]Phyrexian Revoker[/card], [card]Mother of Runes[/card], [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card], and [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card]. D&T is also still one of the top Legacy contenders.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Ad Nauseam, Temur Delver, Manaless Dredge, Omni-Tell, U/W Control, and Jund (which is also similar to the archetype Nic Fit). Key cards from Manaless Dredge include [card]Bloodghast[/card], [card]Phantasmagorian[/card], and [card]River Kelpie[/card] which distinguish it specifically from regular Dredge builds. Jund / Nic Fit key components include [card]Veteran Explorer[/card] to ramp up into cards such as [card]Huntmaster of the Fells[/card], [card]Primeval Titan[/card], and [card]Thragtusk[/card] – also, cards like [card]Sensei’s Divining Top[/card], [card]Pernicious Deed[/card], and [card]Grove of the Burnwillows[/card] / [card]Punishing Fire[/card] synergy work well at controlling the board until you drop a huge dude.

Rounding out the Top 16 were another Omni-Tell, Elves, two Temur Delver, another Ad Nauseam, U/W Stoneblade, Infect, and Sultai Delver. All of these decks have had extensive Legacy coverage previously so no new updates here.

That’s it for this week! As always, thanks for reading.


Weekend Magic: 6/12-6/14

GP Charlotte has come and gone, and the Modern landscape has been shaken up again by its results! Elves took down the tournament, which I certainly didn’t see coming, and there was plenty of innovation to be seen in the Top 8 – after all, not a single Top 8 deck played even one copy of [card]Tarmogoyf[/card]! Let’s take a look at the results.

Grand Prix: Charlotte


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Elves 1st Michael Malone Grixis Control 9th Patrick Chapin
U/R Twin 2nd Wesley See Naya Company 10th Paul Rietzl
Affinity 3rd Andrew Wagoner Abzan Company 11th Riley Curran
Ad Nauseam 4th Darien Elderfield Burn 12th Joe Rittiner
Goryos Vengeance 5th Zach Jesse G/R Tron 13th Michael Ingram
Abzan Company 6th Ian Bosley Abzan Company 14th Mark Klusa
U/R Twin 7th Samuel Pardee Lantern Control 15th Zac Elsik
Burn 8th Donald Smith Abzan Company 16th Bradley Robinson

Let’s highlight some key parts of the Elves strategy:

  • [card]Elvish Archdruid[/card] – A key component to the strategy, this card accelerates your mana while also providing a lord effect for your team. It allows you to easily cast [card]Chord of Calling[/card] or [card]Collected Company[/card] for even more elves to continue the beatdown.
  • [card]Heritage Druid[/card] – Another card that allows fast mana acceleration, Heritage Druid makes elves that you cast immediately be available for more mana to continue playing spells
  • [card]Nettle Sentinel[/card] – This card synergies with [card]Heritage Druid[/card], by allowing you to tap it for mana and then when you cast a green spell it will untap immediately and allow you to again tap it for mana or even attack since it is a 2/2.
  • [card]Ezuri, Renegade Leader[/card] – Probably the most pivotal card in the deck, this guy allows you to pretty much win on the spot if you untap with him in play.
  • [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card] – This Standard card fits right in with what the deck is trying to accomplish and allows you to keep making that green mana all day long.
  • [card]Cavern of Souls[/card] – Uncounterable Elves are pretty good, I hear.

All in all, this is pretty cool deck that can win extremely fast if left unchecked. In the sideboard, [card]Kitchen Finks[/card] and [card]Burrenton Forge-Tender[/card] help you stabilize against Burn and [card]Beast Within[/card] is a nice catch-all answer that can take care of any troubling permanent in a pinch to help finish the game.

U/R Twin was the runner up, playing the usual [card]Deceiver Exarch[/card] / [card]Pestermite[/card] and [card]Splinter Twin[/card] game winning combination. One trend I’ve noticed amongst Twin players (even the three color Grixis / Temur variety) is that they’re playing at least one [card]Roast[/card] main deck these days – five damage to a creature for two mana is really good! Most of the time this kills [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] and will always take out [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card].

[card]Ad Nauseam[/card] came in fourth place, which is a great result for such a large field. The deck is somewhat difficult to pilot but can win out of nowhere since the deck has several ways of keeping the player alive until they can win with [card]Lightning Storm[/card]. [card]Phyrexian Unlife[/card] and [card]Angel’s Grace[/card] are both key parts of the combo, and [card]Spoils of the Vault[/card] is also an important card because it allows you to easily search for any card you need for only one mana (and you don’t have to worry about dying because of the Unlife/Grace that is keeping you alive). [card]Angel’s Grace[/card] also works nicely with [card]Pact of Negation[/card], and you could even use multiple Pacts on the same turn and only need to pay one white mana during your upkeep! Finally, [card]Lotus Bloom[/card] helps with any mana issues by allowing you to suspend it on turn one or two and then have an explosive turn four or five.

[card]Goryo’s Vengeance[/card] has taken a completely new direction this tournament – the deck is now focused on drawing out your entire library with a combination of [card]Nourishing Shoal[/card] and [card]Worldspine Wurm[/card], followed by cheating into a play a [card]Borborygmos Enraged[/card] and then discarding a bunch of lands that you just drew to kill your opponent. [card]Griselbrand[/card] is the key piece of this combination, and you can help filter your deck to get him by using [card]Faithless Looting[/card], [card]Night’s Whisper[/card], and even the newer [card]Tormenting Voice[/card]. Strangely enough, there is enough actual support in the deck to actually utilize the Splice onto Arcane ability of several of the cards – splicing [card]Goryo’s Vengeance[/card] seems especially important if you have two legendary creatures in the graveyard that you want to get into play in a single turn. All in all, this deck looks really fun to play and I can’t wait to jam some games with or against it if given the chance.

In the Top 16, the most unique deck is the mill strategy [card]Lantern Control[/card]. This deck utilizes the cards [card]Codex Shredder[/card] and [card]Ghoulcaller’s Bell[/card] along with tons of “top of the library” manipulation in order to ensure that the opponent never draws a useful card again throughout the rest of the match. Quickly dropping an [card]Ensnaring Bridge[/card] means that your opponent will never be able to attack you as long as you have zero cards in hand, and afterwards all you do is sit back, take their best cards (or cards that could remove Bridge), and then win through milling them.

Several [card]Collected Company[/card] decks made the Top 16 of the event, which means that [card]Collected Company[/card] is officially “in” as a card to expect in Modern from this point out. Even if the math doesn’t seem to work out in theory for the number of creatures you need to run vs. the number of creatures that that are actually in the deck, [card]Collected Company[/card] has put up amazing results in one of the largest Modern tournaments of the year. Remember everyone, if you opponent has four mana open at any point during your turn, you can pretty much bank on Collected Company being cast if they’re playing green and have already dropped one or two small creatures throughout the game so far.

Looks like Modern is shaping up quite nicely. Combo and control were well represented at this event, and even aggro and creature based strategies did quite well. It looks like Modern has hit a nice spot where no one deck or strategy is overtly more powerful than another. Sure, it can feel rock-paper-scissors at times, but Modern overall looks really healthy to me after seeing the results from this weekend. That’s all for this week, thanks for reading.s


Weekend Magic: 6/5-6/7

This weekend brought us the Invitationals, which includes the 2015 TCGPlayer Invitational (Standard) and the Star City Games Open Series Invitational (Standard and Modern). Let’s see what the best Magic deck pilots are playing these days.

2015 TCGPlayer Invitational (Standard)


Deck Player Finished
GR Devotion Chris Fennell 1st
Esper Dragons Paulo Vitor Damo de Rosa 2nd
Mono Red Aggro Anthony Armenio 3rd – 4th
GR Devotion John Dwyer 3rd – 4th
Abzan Midrange Simon Harnden 5th – 8th
GR Devotion Robert Pisano 5th – 8th
Mardu Dragons Yam Wing-Chun 5th – 8th
UB Control Adrian Sullivan 5th – 8th
GR Devotion Seth Mansfield 9th – 16th
Sidisi Whip Jeremy Barbeau 9th – 16th
Mardu Dragons Eric Froehlich 9th – 16th
Esper Dragons Bayani Manansala 9th – 16th
Esper Dragons Sonny Aparicio 9th – 16th
UW Heroic Cody Lingelbach 9th – 16th
Red Deck Wins Tommy Harding 9th – 16th
RG Dragons Timothy Rivera 9th – 16th

Chris Fennell took down the even piloting G/R Devotion, the deck that is all about ramping up into giant threats in order to overwhelm the opponent. Key cards in Chris’ list include [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card], [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], and [card]Genesis Hydra[/card].

Paulo Vitor Damo de Rosa was the runner up piloting Esper Dragons. Key cards in this deck include [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card], [card]Dig Through Time[/card], and [card]Silumgar’s Scorn[/card].

Rounding out the Top 8 we have Mono-Red Aggro, GR Devotion, Abzan Midrange, Mardu Dragons, and UB Control. Very diverse for a field full of some of the top players in Magic. The most distinct deck of the Top 8 was Mardu Dragons, which featured [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card] alongside [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] and [card]Kolaghan, the Storm’s Fury[/card] with spells [card]Crackling Doom[/card] and [card]Draconic Roar[/card].

The Top 16 included decks GR Devotion, Sidsi Whip, Mardu Dragons, Esper Dragons, UW Heroic, and Red Deck wins. Notable decks here are Sidisi Whip and UW Heroic. Key pieces of Sidisi Whip include [card]Sidisi, Brood Tyrant[/card], [card]Whip of Erebos[/card], [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card], [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], [card]Doomwake Giant[/card], and [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card]. Key pieces of UW Heroic include [card]Hero of Iroas[/card], [card]Battlewise Hoplite[/card], [card]Temur Battle Rage[/card], and [card]Ordeal of Thassa[/card]. Even though key components of these decks are on the horizon to rotate in the fall, based on these results you should still expect them in the summer months to come!

Star City Games Open Series Invitational – Standard


Deck Finish Player
Naya Dragons 1st Ali Aintrazi
G/R Devotion 2nd Chris VanMeter
Abzan Megamorph 3rd Joshua Ravitz
Mardu Dragons 4th Richard Adams
G/R Devotion 5th Christopher O’Bryant
G/R Devotion 6th JB Milo
G/R Devotion 7th Tariq Patel
Esper Dragons 8th Kyle Boggemes

GR Devotion was the story of the SCG Invitational Standard results, with four of the Top 8 players piloting the deck in the Standard portion of the tournament. Naya Dragons was the choice of Ali Aintrazi, the winner of the Invitational. This features of this deck are [card]Hidden Dragonslayer[/card], [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], [card]Dragonlord Dromoka[/card], and [card]Xenagos, God of Revels[/card]. Looks like the goal of the deck is to ramp up into either [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] or [card]Dragonlord Dromoka[/card] and finish the game with with [card]Xenagos, God of Revels[/card]. Of course, the [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] backup plan is still relevant along with twelve mana dorks to accelerate victory. [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] is in the sideboard of this deck, but four copies can come in against decks with lots of removal or direct damage.

Star City Games Open Series Invitational – Modern


Deck Finish Player
G/R Tron 1st Ali Aintrazi
Amulet Bloom 2nd Chris VanMeter
Jund 3rd Josh Ravitz
Merfolk 4th Richard Adams
G/R Tron 5th Christopher O’Bryant
Abzan Company 6th JB Milo
Amulet Bloom 7th Tariq Patel
Grixis Twin 8th Kyle Boggemes

Looking at the Modern results, Tron put both the finalist Ali Aintrazi and Christopher O’Bryant into the Top 8. Key components of the Tron deck include [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card], [card]Karn Liberated[/card], [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card], [card]Expedition Map[/card], [card]Sylvan Scrying[/card], and [card]Oblivion Stone[/card]. The runner up Chris VanMeter along with Tariq Patel were on Amulet Bloom, further cementing the deck’s presence in Modern. Key cards from this deck include [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Amulet of Vigor[/card], [card]Hive Mind[/card], [card]Summoner’s Pact[/card], and [card]Summer Bloom[/card].

Jund is well positioned in Modern these days, which I’m sure helped Josh Ravitz along in snagging third place. Key cards here include [card]Dark Confidant[/card], [card]Tarmogoyf[/card], [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card], [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], and [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card]. Out of the sideboard, [card]Fulminator Mage[/card] is important as is [card]Huntmaster of the Fells[/card] and [card]Kitchen Finks[/card].

Merfolk allowed Richard Adams to snag 4th place. Key cards here are [card]Lord of Atlantis[/card], [card]Master of the Pearl Trident[/card], [card]Master of Waves[/card], [card]Mutavault[/card], [card]Aether Vial[/card], and [card]Spreading Seas[/card]. Out of the sideboard, [card]Unified Will[/card] is an interesting choice – I’m not sure I’ve seen that one before! Seems good though against control and combo decks that are running few to no creatures.

Rounding out the Top 8 are Abzan Company and Grixis Twin. Both of these decks have been doing great in Modern recently. Key cards in Abzan Company include [card]Birds of Paradise[/card], [card]Chord of Calling[/card], and [card]Collected Company[/card] (along with a host of toolbox creatures of course). Key cards in Grixis Twin include [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], [card]Splinter Twin[/card], [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card], and [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card].

That’s all for this week! Key coming back for more weekend summaries.

Weekend Magic: 5/22-5/24

This weekend brought us Star City Games: Worcester, which featured Legacy as the main event with a side of Standard and Modern. Let’s take a look at the results and see which Legacy decks did best in a larger field.

Star City Games Open: Legacy (Worcester, MA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Grixis Delver 1st Noah Walker Sultai Delver 9th Ben Feingersh
Elves 2nd Andrew Jessup Miracles 10th Sam Roukas
Lands 3rd David Long Sultai Delver 11th Ross Merriam
Grixis Control 4th Paul Lynch Miracles 12th Joe Lossett
Death and Taxes 5th Michael Derczo U/R Delver 13th Eli Kassis
Infect 6th Zachary Koch Grixis Delver 14th Ed Demicco
Jeskai Stoneblade 7th Kevin Jones Omni-Tell 15th Chris VanMeter
Miracles 8th Joe Spanier Grixis Control 16th Eric English

Grixis Delver took down the event piloted by Noah Walker. Key cards in this deck included [card]Deathrite Shaman[/card], [card]Delver of Secrets[/card], and [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] backed up by twenty-eight cheap spells that help fuel huge Delve targets [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] and [card]Dig Through Time[/card]. [card]Cabal Therapy[/card] is a nice inclusion in the sideboard, as you can make good use of it with [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] tokens. Overall, the sideboard is pretty transformational and can be used to update the deck for a variety of matchups. It’s a solid deck, so expect to see more Delver lists in Legacy for the foreseeable future.

Elves was the runner up, which still shows that it is one of the best decks in the format. Key cards in the Elves strategy include [card]Heritage Druid[/card], [card]Nettle Sentinel[/card], [card]Wirewood Symbiote[/card], [card]Glimpse of Nature[/card], and [card]Natural Order[/card]. These cards all allow the deck to ultimately combo off by fetching a [card]Craterhoof Behemoth[/card] with [card]Green Sun’s Zenith[/card] in order to kill your opponent off in one huge turn. The sideboard includes black cards that allow it to transform into a more attrition-style deck with [card]Abrupt Decay[/card], [card]Cabal Therapy[/card], and [card]Thoughtseize[/card], along with one copy of [card]Progenitus[/card] in order to get around targeted removal.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were a wide variety of decks. Lands is a classic Legacy standby deck; Grixis Control is a newer deck based on planeswalkers [card]Dack Fayden[/card] and [card]Jace, the Mind Sculptor[/card] along with a ton of spells to control the game; Death and Taxes is the white punisher deck seen in Legacy often these days; Infect is a solid creature based on combo deck; Jeskai Stoneblade is a more recent addition to the Legacy pantheon that has established itself as a dominant archetype; and Miracles is the de facto control deck in Legacy these days.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16 were lots of control and tempo decks but only one combo deck. Surprisingly, plenty of grindy and tempo decks made it into the Top 16 of this tournament while combo sort of got left out. No Storm decks means that players were definitely prepared to face combo that weekend.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Standard (Worcester, MA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Abzan Aggro 1st John McCarthy Abzan Control 9th Peter Nguyen
Mono-Red Aggro 2nd Greg Lanzillotta R/W Dragons 10th Devon O’Donnell
G/R Devotion 3rd Jared Dimascio G/R Dragons 11th Oliver Dyakov
Abzan Control 4th Matthew Wong Esper Dragons 12th Marius Cholewa
Abzan Control 5th Roger Bulmer Abzan Megamorph Control 13th Adam Riley
Abzan Aggro 6th Jake Bartlett Abzan Megamorph Control 14th Mike Sigrist
Bant Megamorph 7th Julian Flury Bant Megamorph 15th Oliver Tiu
Abzan Aggro 8th Chris Kvortek Temur Dragons 16th John Lubrano

Abzan Aggro took down the Standard portion of the tournament, along with putting two others into the Top 8 spots of the event. Along with Abzan Control, Abzan strategies accounted for five of the Top 8 finishes in the Standard Preimier IQ. Key cards in Abzan Strategies include [card]Siege Rhino[/card], [card]Abzan Charm[/card], [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card], [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card], and [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card].

Mono-Red Aggro, G/R Devotion, and Bant Megamorph all are also good strategies to watch out for. Bant Megamorph makes best use of the enchantment [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] along with [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] in order to keep churning out more 2/2 Manifests every turn.

The rest of the Top 16 included decks such as R/W Dragons, Esper Dragons, Temur Dragons, and Abzan Megamorph Control. Dragons decks are still doing quite well these days, even though Esper Dragons seems to have fallen out of favor since players are more prepared to play against the deck. Temur Dragons is the most unique deck, featuring cards such as [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], and [card]Stubborn Denial[/card].

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Worcester, MA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Temur Delver 1st Jordan Boisvert Jund 9th Julian Wildes
Amulet Bloom 2nd Micah Greenbaum Zoo 10th David Lin
U/R Twin 3rd Brian Swatkins Jund 11th Adam Snoot
Jund 4th Frank Moon Jund 12th Jarvis Yu
Grixis Twin 5th Matthew Tellier Burn 13th Patrick Byrne
Zoo 6th Cheng Gong U/R Twin 14th Justin Harpin
Esper Zur 7th Timothy Fay G/W Hatebears 15th Dave Covino
G/R Tron 8th Dylan Plourde Abzan 16th Nick Yanofsky

Temur Delver took down the Modern part of the weekend piloted by Jordan Boisvert. The deck very different than your typical Temur Delver lists – included were four [card]Hooting Mandrills[/card], two [card]Curiosity[/card], four [card]Disrupting Shoal[/card], three [card]Stubborn Denial[/card], and one [card]Simic Charm[/card]. Also, there are three [card]Blood Moon[/card] in the sideboard of this deck that come in to crush… other three color decks I presume? Certainly an interesting spin on Temur Delver that is sure to have players discussing these choice for a while.

Rounding out the Top 8 were a nice assortment of decks, including Jund, Zoo, and something called Esper Zur. Esper Zur is definitely an interesting deck – playing four of the namesake card [card]Zur the Enchanter[/card], this deck aims to get out [card]Detention Sphere[/card], [card]Spreading Seas[/card], and [card]Steel of the Godhead[/card] (along with other enchantments in the sideboard) in order to lock down the game and finish the opponent off with a powered up Zur or [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card].

Zoo is still packing [card]Collected Company[/card], so if you start seeing small creatures attacking your face be on the lookout for a potentially backbreaking combat or end of turn trick. Getting a [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card] and [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card] off of a [card]Collected Company[/card] is no joke!

Jund is now pretty much the only deck playing [card]Dark Confidant[/card], as the deck needs a source of card advantage since it is trying to control the game through spells like [card]Abrupt Decay[/card], [card]Lightning Bolt[/card], [card]nquisition of Kozilek[/card], and [card]Terminate[/card]. [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], [card]Tarmogoyf[/card], and [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] are also mainstays in the deck due to their versatility in the format. [card]Fulminator Mage[/card] and [card]Choke[/card] out of the sideboard help against multicolor and blue decks, while cards like [card]Feed the Clan[/card] and [card]Anger of the Gods[/card] are great against hyper aggressive strategies.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16 it appears that Jund did very well for itself in this event. No new decks this week in the Top 16, so that’s about it for Modern coverage.

That’s all for this week, stay tuned for more future Magic coverage.


Weekend Magic: 5/15-5/17

Last weekend brought us Grand Prix: Shanghai and Star City Games: Dallas. In other words, plenty of Standard action with a side of Modern and Legacy. Let’s see what the results were.

Grand Prix: Shanghai

Format – Standard


“Abzan Megamorph Control” is quite a mouthful yet is an apt name for the deck that won GP Shanghai. Yuuki Ichikawa had the full playset of [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card]s and [card]Den Protector[/card]s in this build in order to generate tons of value together along with board clear [card]Crux of Fate[/card] and spells [card]Abzan Charm[/card] and [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card]. [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] is the big finisher in the deck with [card]Nisa, Worldwaker[/card] and [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] coming in from the sideboard to help clean things up against control mirror matches.

The rest of the Top 8 wasn’t very diverse. Two other Abzan decks and five G/R decks made it in. Notably absent is Esper Dragons – it seems that G/R dragons and Abzan decks are good counters to the control deck’s counterpart.

Some notable cards from the G/R lists include [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], and [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card].

Star City Games Open: Standard (Dallas, TX, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
G/R Dragons 1st Nathan Fabilenia Abzan Aggro 9th Edward Eng
Abzan Control 2nd Jon Lim U/B Control 10th Nick Schoolcraft-McCuen
Abzan Aggro 3rd Gabe Joglar Mardu Dragons 11th Clifton Beech
Atarka Red 4th Nathan Zamora Mardu Dragons 12th Josh Crowe
Mardu Dragons 5th Michael Villavicenci Abzan Megamorph 13th Nathan Waxer
G/W Megamorph 6th Jonathan Berg Abzan Megamorph 14th Richard Shade
Esper Dragons 7th Sam Berkenbile Bant Heroic 15th Logan Mize
Mono-Red Aggro 8th Drew Iafrate G/B Constellation 16th Erick Ramirez

G/R Dragons took down the Standard portion piloted by Nathan Fabilenia. There are plenty of example G/R Dragons decks from GP Shanghai, so we’ll focus on other lists that made the Top 8.

Mardu Dragons made an appearance in the Top 8, along with two other Top 16 appearances. After being featured in the finals of GP Toronto the deck is still doing well in the Standard metagame. Key players in this deck include [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], [card]Kolaghan, the Storm’s Fury[/card], [card]Crackling Doom[/card], [card]Draconic Roar[/card], and [card]Foul-Tongue Invocation[/card].

Abzan decks also did well in Dallas last weekend, so you should continue to expect them in the Standard metagame. G/W Megamorph featured four [card]Avatar of the Resolute[/card] this time, along with a playset of [card]Collected Company[/card] however no [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] in the main deck (though it still made the sideboard). Mono-Red Aggro is still looking as fast as ever though interestingly only two [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card]s were main deck with the other two relegated to the sideboard to increase the clock against slower decks.

Rounding out the Top 16, Bant Heroic and G/B Constellation made appearances. Though becoming more “old school” Standard as the days go on, they can still put up impressive results if the pilot is skilled enough. Cards like [card]Hero of Iroas[/card], [card]Doomwake Giant[/card], and [card]Eidolon of Blossoms[/card] are still powerful in the right build and you should still expect to see these decks pop up from time to time until rotation.

Star City Games Premier IQ: Modern (Dallas, TX, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Grixis Twin 1st Roland Hinajosa Abzan 9th Dylan Backham
Affinity 2nd Christopher Arico Burn 10th Matthew Hudson
Grixis Control 3rd Dan Jessup Jund 11th Todd Anderson
Affinity 4th Brandon Borowicz Obliterator Rock 12th Jason Blackmor
Slivers 5th Bryan Dubois Jund 13th Jason Clark
Merfolk 6th Ty Elrod Restore Balance 14th Robert Garza
Abzan Company 7th JB Milo U/R Twin 15th Benjamin Autin
Jund 8th Eddie Leza Burn 16th Anderes Hernandoez

Moving on to the Modern portion of the weekend, Grixis Twin took down the event piloted by Roland Hinajosa. Remember, the black splash is for [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] and [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card] main deck with multiple sideboard options including [card]Engineered Explosives[/card], [card]Murderous Cut[/card], and [card]Bitterblossom[/card], and more copies of [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card].

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8, Slivers has finally made a break into Modern and even Merfolk was able to place well. Grixis Control is nicely tuned deck that made third place. It is able to take advantage of cards like [card]Vedalken Shackles[/card] and [card]Blood Moon[/card], along with [card]Cryptic Command[/card] and other Modern powerhouses to take control of the game and prevent the opponent from advancing their game plan.

Slivers is all kinds of out there – with so many one-of’s in the deck, it would be better to check it out for yourself rather than have me list them all here. The core slivers which were played as four copies include [card]Galerider Sliver[/card], [card]Predatory Sliver[/card], and [card]Sinew Sliver[/card], along with three copies each of [card]Homing Sliver[/card] and [card]Manaweft Sliver[/card]. Of course, cards like [card]Cavern of Souls[/card] are insane in this deck and even four copies of [card]Sliver Hive[/card] and [card]Reflecting Pool[/card] are pretty awesome too for rainbow mana. [card]Aether Vial[/card] seems pretty important for this deck, and of course [card]Collected Company[/card] is going to pretty much always get you two slivers off the top at instant speed.

Merfolk seems to be appearing more and more in the Top 8 of the Modenr IQ’s, so it is definitely a deck to watch out for these days. Elrod’s version is very streamlined, with pretty much every copy of the card in the deck being a playset (even in the sideboard!). [card]Kira, Great Glass-Spinner[/card] just seems so broken in this deck – if you have at least three creatures in play and if you resolve it, it can be very sad times for the opponent.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16, Obliterator Rock and Restore Balance are the innovative decks that did well this week. Cards to watch out for in Obliterator Rock include [card]Phyrexian Obliterator[/card], [card]Vampire Nighthawk[/card], [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], and [card]Abrupt Decay[/card]. Cards to watch out for in Restore Balance are [card]Greater Gargadon[/card], [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card], [card]Huntmaster of the Fells[/card], and [card]Restore Balance[/card].

Star City Games Premier IQ: Legacy (Dallas, TX, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Storm 1st Dustin Carriere U/R Delver 9th Dustin Buckingham
U/R Delver 2nd David Houghton Grixis Control 10th Harold Williams
Reanimator 3rd Austin Palmer Miracles 11th Patrick Tierney
Storm 4th Caleb Scherer Miracles 12th Shane Remelt
Miracles 5th Collin Rountree Sultai Delver 13th William Lo
Miracles 6th Bo Zhang Sultai Delver 14th Tannon Grace
Miracles 7th Skyler Goy Show and Tell 15th Kayleb Koslowsky
Omni-Tell 8th Nick Loiacono Omni-Tell 16th Dennis Wilder

Storm took the top spot in Legacy piloted by Dustin Carriere. Storm is always a Legacy staple, so if you play Legacy you know to expect it fairly often. You must be careful and counter key parts of the combo in order to slow them down enough to kill them. Key cards include [card]Lion’s Eye Diamond[/card], [card]Infernal Tutor[/card], and the various rituals that the deck uses to get enough mana to combo off.

The rest of the Top 8 is not very diverse, and includes many decks that have been seen in Legacy over the past several months. Miracles made numerous showings throughout the Top 16, as did Omni-Tell / Show and Tell builds along with U/R Delver and Sultai Delver builds. Not a ton of innovation in Legacy this week, however Legacy is a fairly stable format and doesn’t change that much from week to week.

That’s all for this week! Stay tuned for future Magic updates.

Weekend Magic: 5/8-5/10

Last weekend brought us Grand Prix: Paris, a look into the Standard environment of Europe. Interestingly, no Esper Dragons decks made the Top 8 of Paris. Let’s take a look at the Top 8 and see how the dragons met their downfall.

Grand Prix: Paris


Abzan Midrange piloted by Amand Dosimont closed out the tournament. Based on the three other Abzan Midrange decks in the Top 8 we can clearly see that Abzan has plenty of tools in order to keep the deck in Tier 1 status. Notable cards in Dosimont’s list include [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card], and [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card]. [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card] was also included as a two-of, in order to make the most out of the late game if the game continued to drag towards the later stages. [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] is still a great roleplayer in the deck by both giving it reach and a better board presence depending on the situation. Interestingly, the [card]Den Protector[/card]’s were in the sideboard for this particular deck – even with two of the other decks playing them main deck. [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] was also relegated to the sideboard since the metagame has started speeding up due to the presence of so many faster decks. Aggro makes up 75% of the format now!

Let’s take a look at some of the themes amongst the Abzan Aggro decks:

  • [card]Den Protector[/card] – Either in the main deck or sideboard, this card did a ton of work for all players that made the Top 8 in Paris last weekend
  • [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card] – Still the best two drop around for the Abzan Aggro and Midrange builds
  • [card]Siege Rhino[/card] – If you’re playing Abzan, this is the reason why.
  • [card]Abzan Charm[/card] – Another great reason to play Abzan, both the charm and Rhino provide a ton of reach against opponents
  • [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card] – Still one of the best removal spells in the format
  • [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] – Another recent addition, I expect that this card will fall out of favor once Theros block rotates but you never know. Charms are just so versatile, and this one costs only two mana, so it could just as easily see play post Theros as it is seeing now depending on what the metagame looks like.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were Selesnya Aggro, two Red Deck Wins, and Devotion to Green.

Selesnya Aggro was certainly an interesting build. By going heavy on [card]Collected Company[/card], the deck tried to make the most out of its low cost creatures by including ones such as [card]Hidden Dragonslayer[/card]so that in addition to Megamorphing them they could also get them into play off with a [card]Collected Company[/card]. I’m sure it felt bad to only get a single [card]Elvish Mystic[/card] off the top every once in a while yet when [card]Collected Company[/card] hits it can hit really well. By including [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] as well as [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], the deck gains a bit of additional reach by being able to Manifest creatures continually off the top of the deck and continuing the onslaught. [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] has been relegated to the sideboard here and [card]Hornet Nest[/card] is a nasty surprise that can be turned face up with [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] or be put into play with [card]Collected Company[/card]. Overall, a really fun deck that is able to compete well in the current environment.

Red Deck Wins is looking the same as ever. Notable cards include [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card], [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card], [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card], [card]Stoke the Flames[/card], [card]Lightning Strike[/card], and [card]Wild Slash[/card]. Kim opted to play four [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card]s and three [card]Flamewake Phoenix[/card]’s as a way to fly over opposing creatures (pumping them up with [card]Titan’s Strength[/card]), while Polzl choose to play the faster goblins in the form of [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card] and [card]Goblin Heelcutter[/card] in order to finish off opponents with more burst attacks.

Finally, Devotion to Green is a deck we haven’t seen in a while but is still very good in the format. Though the deck is mainly devoted to green, there are of course splashes of red in there for cards [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] and [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card]. Other notable cards include [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], and [card]Genesis Hydra[/card]. This deck can be insanely fast and can generate an absurd amount of mana very quickly if left unchecked or undisrupted.

Outside of the Top 8, one other interesting deck that went undefeated Day 1 was a four color [card]Collected Company[/card] deck piloted by Yohan Dudognon. This deck featured such cards as [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], [card]Mantis Rider[/card], [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card], and [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card] all in the same deck! Talk about getting the most out of your Collected Companies! Even [card]Ojutai’s Command[/card] made an appearance as a way to get back cheaper creatures that died like [card]Seeker of the Way[/card] and [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card].

So there we have it, the only non-Limited event of the previous weekend! Each weekend continues to bring us something more exciting whether it is Standard or beyond.


Weekend Magic: 4/24-4/26

This past weekend brought us Star City Games: Cleveland. The main event was Standard, with of course a side of Modern and Legacy. Let’s take a look at the results and see what happened.

Star City Games Open – Standard (Cleveland, OH, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Bant Heroic 1st Ross Merriam Jeskai Aggro 9th Harlan Firer
G/R Dragons 2nd Brad Fallen Esper Dragons 10th Zachary Helfer
Abzan Aggro 3rd Kyle Boggemes Mardu Midrange 11th Joshua Taylor
Esper Dragons 4th Gerard Fabiano Esper Dragons 12th Andrew Maine
Bant Midrange 5th Collins Mullen Atarka Red 13th Matt Ratajceak
Jeskai Tokens 6th Alex Zurawski Abzan Megamorph 14th Jim Davis
Esper Dragons 7th Kenta Hiroki Abzan Aggro 15th Andrew Boswell
Abzan Aggro 8th Connor Bowman Bant Midrange 16th Chris Andersen

Ross Merriam took down the Standard portion piloting Bant Heroic. Key players in this deck are [card]Favored Hoplite[/card], [card]Hero of Iroas[/card], [card]Seeker of the Way[/card], and [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] to bring home the versatility. I’m sure that [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] contributed a great deal to Merriam’s success and is definitely a card to watch out for the in future, in Bant Heroic and other decks. Other notable cards in the list are two [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] main deck and three [card]Encase in Ice[/card] out of the sideboard. In this deck we see some interesting innovations in the typical Heroic list that enabled it to come out top dog of the weekend.

The runner up was G/R Dragons, another deck we’ve seen cement itself in the metagame since Dragons of Tarkir was released. This deck was playing [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card] and [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] as the main dragons, with [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] backup in case the game goes long. [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card] continues to show up in these lists in order to help generate massive amounts of mana in order to cast the heavier dragons like Atarka or even monstrifying a [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card] for massive amounts of damage.

Rounding out the Top 8, decks of note include two Abzan Aggro decks and Bant Midrange. Boggemes’ list resembled past lists by featuring solid choices like [card]Abzan Charm[/card] and [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card]. Bowman’s list featured a playset of [card]Collected Company[/card] and main decked two [card]Grim Haruspex[/card] as a way to generate card advantage through a “surprise” [card]Collected Company[/card] during the combat phase. Another interesting choice was a full playset of [card]Herald of Torment[/card] and [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card], again to get the most out of those CC plays. Certainly an interesting list that could pick up more steam over time as more creatures that cost three mana or less are added to the Standard card pool. Finally, Bant Midrange features the best of the Heroic and G/W Midrange decks by playing [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card] along with beatstick [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card], [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card], and [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card]. All in all just a solid deck choice that has pretty decent matchups against most of the field (though not quite at the level of Esper Dragons).

Rouding out the Top 16, decks of note include Mardu Midrange and Abzan Megamorph. Notable cards in Mardu Midrange are [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card], [card]Outpost Siege[/card], [card]Crackling Doom[/card], and [card]Mardu Charm[/card]. Notable cards in Abzan Megamorph are [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], [card]Den Protector[/card], [card]Abzan Charm[/card], and [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] out of the sideboard.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Modern (Cleveland, OH, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai Control 1st Matthew Tickal Abzan Collected Company 9th Bobby Colegrove
Amulet Bloom 2nd James McCoury Affinity 10th Leonard Wernette-Leff
G/W Trap 3rd Nicholas Montaquila Abzan 11th Jacob Lee
Grixis Twin 4th Kevin Jones Abzan Collected Company 12th James Moffitt
Burn 5th Cody Alexander Ad Nauseam 13th Bill Ragle
Abzan Aggro 6th Joseph Nowell Jund 14th Adam Vincik
Affinity 7th Steven Baker Storm 15th Travis Limbert
Affinity 8th Andrew Eales Amulet Bloom 16th Eric Rill

Moving on to Modern, Sultai Control took down the Premier IQ piloted by Matthew Tickal. Similar to the list first introducted by Gerrard Fabiano, again we see [card]Thragtusk[/card], [card]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/card], and [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card] battling alongside of [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], [card]Tarmogoyf[/card], and other notable Modern staples. Second place went to Amulet Bloom, a deck that was featured at the Pro Tour and is widely known in Modern at this point. McCoury’s deck featured [card]Grave Titan[/card] as another way to win in addition to [card]Primeval Titan[/card] and the [card]Hive Mind[/card] / Pact combo.

Looking at the rest of the Top 8, G/W Trap seems to be a new brew featuring cards such as [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card], [card]Lotus Cobra[/card], [card]Nest Invader[/card], [card]Primeval Titan[/card], and [card]Emrakul, the Aeons Torn[/card] along with [card]Summoning Trap[/card] and [card]Mosswort Bridge[/card] in order to cheat an Emrakul into play without paying the mana cost. We also see a black splash for [card]Lingering Souls[/card] in the main deck, to help delay the game until Emrakul can come online or to help finish a game that seems stalled. Certainly an interesting build – I’m not sure how good it is on a large scale however it is certainly something to keep an eye on moving forward. The Affinity decks also featured some tech in the form of [card]Temur Battle Rage[/card] and and [card]Ghostfire Blade[/card].

Looking at the rest of the Top 16, Abzan Collected Company continues to showcase its strength and even Jund and Storm showed up to make the Top 16 in Cleveland. Nothing really new or innovative here.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Legacy (Cleveland, OH, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Grixis Control 1st Jason Smith Miracles 9th Dan Musser
Miracles 2nd Sitharthan Sriharan Lands 10th Nick Byrd
Miracles 3rd Joe Lossett Tezzerator 11th Cameron Wisniewski
Miracles 4th Sean O’Neal Grixis Pyro 12th Chris Stagno
Omni-Tell 5th Zechariah Szoke Sultai Delver 13th John Wiley
Death and Taxes 6th Adam Johnson Miracles 14th Marcus Perez
Jeskai Stoneblade 7th Steven McGrew Metalworker 15th Stephen Seliskar
Metalworker 8th Sean Logie Merfolk 16th Scott Muir

With results from GP Kyoto in, it looks like it has changed the face of Legacy. Again we see Miracles and Omni-Tell in the Top 8 however Grixis Control piloted by Jason Smith took down the event. Notable cards here include [card]Baleful Strix[/card], [card]Young Pyromancer[/card], [card]Dack Fayden[/card], and four copies of [card]Dig Through Time[/card].

Moving on to Miracles, key components of the deck include the [card]Counterbalance[/card] / [card]Sensei’s Diving Top[/card] package, [card]Terminus[/card], [card]Entreat the Angels[/card], [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], and [card]Jace, the Mind Sculptor[/card]. Nothing innovate going on with Top 8 Miracles lists.

Omni-Tell shows up again, featuring a playset of [card]Omniscience[/card] and [card]Cunning Wish[/card]. Metalworker is playing two [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card] these days which is cool. I’m surprised that it makes the cut over [card]Karn Liberated[/card] but it appears that a one-sided [card]Pernicious Deed[/card] with exile is superior [card]Vindicate[/card] with exile.

Rounding out the Top 16, Tezzerator makes an appearance in 11th place and Merfolk makes an appearance in 16th place. Notable cards from Tezzerator include [card]Baleful Strix[/card], [card]Dack Fayden[/card], [card]Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas[/card], [card]Chalice of the Void[/card], [card]Mox Diamond[/card], [card]Sword of the Meek[/card] / [card]Thopter Foundry[/card], and [card]Transmute Artifact[/card]. Notable cards from Merfolk include [card]True-Name Nemesis[/card], [card]Phantasmal Image[/card], a single [card]Mishra’s Factory[/card], a single [card]Thassa, God of the Sea[/card], and [card]Vapor Snag[/card].

That’s all from Cleveland! See you next time.

Weekend Magic: 4/17-4/19

This week brings us Grand Prix Krakow, Grand Prix Kyoto, and Star City Games: Providence. That’s a ton of information to cover so let’s get down to business.

GP Krakow (Poland)

Top 8 Decklists

Top 16 Decklists

Format – Standard

Standard is still all about dragons in Europe yet the Top 8 seemed to prefer the blue, white, and black dragons more than the classic red color. [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card] was the key player in many of the Top 8 decks and has thereby cemented itself as a powerhouse in Standard based on the results. No less than five Esper Dragons decks placed in the Top 8, with six total appearances in the Top 16. Let’s take a closer look at this deck for other key players besides Dragonlord Ojutai.


  • [card]Silumgar, the Drifting Death[/card] – A notable threat all weekend, Silumgar keeps opposing armies in check until the control deck can stabilize and finish the opponent off.
  • [card]Crux of Fate[/card] – I hear one sided [card]Wrath of God[/card] is pretty nice, of course a Dragons control deck is going to run it!
  • [card]Dig Through Time[/card] – Needed for card selection and a Standard staple in almost any blue deck.
  • [card]Silumgar’s Scorn[/card] – [card]Counterspell[/card] is nuts, and while you won’t always have Counterspell dragons in your hand available you can still cast it at the opportune moment to disrupt your opponent’s game plan. Just a solid card all around.
  • [card]Foul-Tongue Invocation[/card] – One of the new premier removal spells, this card reminds us of [card]Devour Flesh[/card] but is so much better. Expect to continue seeing it over its Standard life.

Other decks in the Top 8 included Blue / Black dragons (might as well be Esper), Jeskai Tokens, and Ojutai Bant. Notables from Jeskai Tokens includes [card]Secure the Wastes[/card] and [card]Jeskai Ascendancy[/card]. Notables from Ojutai Bant include [card]Den Protector[/card], [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card], and [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card].

Looking outside of the Top 8, the field becomes much more diverse. Bant Heroic, Red-Green Dragons, Abzan Whip, another Esper Dragons, Green-White Aggro, Green Devotion, Abzan Midrange, and Abzan Control were all represented here. Notables from the decks include:

  • [card]Hero of Iroas[/card] and [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] in Bant Heroic
  • [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] in Red-Green Dragons
  • [card]Wingmate Roc[/card] and [card]Sidisi, Undead Vizier[/card] in Abzan Whip
  • [card]Avatar of the Resolute[/card], [card]Reverent Hunter[/card], [card]Den Protector[/card], [card]Collected Company[/card], and [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] in Green-White Aggro
  • [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], and [card]See the Unwritten[/card] in Green Devotion
  • [card]Den Protector[/card] in Abzan Control

Looking at the Top 8 doesn’t show many diverse results, however the Top 16 saw plenty of variety in the way that Standard decks can be built.

GP Kyoto (Japan)

Format – Legacy

Top 8 Decklists

U/W Miracles took down the event with Stoneblade in a close second. [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] made an appearance as a playset in Murakami’s Stoneblade list. Looks like Mentor has broken into Legacy formats and might be another threat along with [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] that will keep churning out tokens for years to come.

[card]Omniscience[/card] was an important player in Kyoto, with two Omni-Show decks making it into the Top 8. Other key cards in Omni-Show include [card]Show and Tell[/card], [card]Cunning Wish[/card], and [card]Dig Through Time[/card]. Along with Sneak and Show, Omni-Show is another deck that you need to look out for due its explosive combo nature.

Not a ton of innovation here outside of Omni-Tell (which has been around in Legacy, but has become better positioned since Dragons of Tarkir has been released) just solid deck pilots that were able to sweep through the preliminary rounds with decks like Storm.

Star City Games Open – Standard (Providence, USA)



Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Abzan Reanimator 1st Oliver Tomajko Abzan Control 9th Thomas Roth
Mono-Red Aggro 2nd Peter Nguyen Temur Dragons 10th Brian Dolan
Sultai Reanimator 3rd Dustin Taylor Jeskai Aggro 11th Kei Rong
Abzan Control 4th Robert Vaughn Jeskai Aggro 12th Nick Allain
Abzan Aggro 5th Andrew Boswell Abzan Control 13th Dan Jessup
Abzan Control 6th Kyle Shane Abzan Aggro 14th Robert Elias
Jeskai Aggro 7th Noah Walker Mono-Red Aggro 15th Michael Ray
Abzan Control 8th Ben Feingersh Esper Dragons 16th Zachary Kiihne

With Esper Dragons barely making the Top 16, Providence instead featured plenty of Abzan action. Between Abzan Aggro, Control, and Reanimator decks taking five spots in the Top 8, there were also three copies in the Top 16. Cards in Abzan strategies that are notable include: 

  • [card]Siege Rhino[/card] – If you were Abzan, you were packing four copies of the Rhino in your deck.
  • [card]Den Protector[/card] showed up again across a few lists
  • [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card] was an important role player in both Control and Aggro lists
  • [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card] and [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card] in Abzan Aggro
  • [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card] was featured in Vaughn’s contro list

Not a whole lot of new tech from Dragons was featured in Abzan decks.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were Mono-Red Aggro, Sultai Reanimator, and Jeskai Aggro. Notable cards from these decks include [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] and [card]Sidisi, Undead Vizier[/card] in Sultai Reanimator and [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] in Jeskai Aggro.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16, Temur Dragons is the only unique deck. This deck featured four [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], four [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], three [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], and four [card]Stubborn Denial[/card]. Though it is named Dragons, it doesn’t run any of the Dragon enabled spells like [card]Draconic Roar[/card].

Star City Games Premier IQ – Modern (Providence, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Abzan 1st Caupolican Lopez Yapor G/R Tron 9th Alexander Oliveira
Abzan 2nd Nick Giordano Abzan 10th Greg Gentile
U/R Twin 3rd Michael McKena Jeskai 11th Nicholas Heal
Burn 4th Ben Kazhdan Grixis Pyro 12th Luis Alfonso
U/B Faeries 5th Anthony Huynh Burn 13th Jonathan Delano
Affinity 6th Ian Hacker Burn 14th Alfoso Krivickas
Affinity 7th Griffin Kadar Affinity 15th Rachel Dillon
Esper Tokens 8th Zane Knapp Grixis Delver 16th Michael Deidolori

Moving on to Modern, Abzan and Affinity took four of the Top 8 spots along with U/R Twin, Burn, U/B Faeries, and Esper Tokens. Abzan seems to be adopting one [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] main deck, so look out for this card in Modern moving forward as well as Standard.

Looking at U/B Faeries, the deck featured [card]Mistbind Clique[/card], [card]Scion of Oona[/card], four [card]Spellstutter Sprite[/card], and four [card]Bitterblossom[/card]. [card]Countersquall[/card] out of the sideboard is also an interesting choice, as it isn’t seen very often but can be a nice card in the right metagame.

In Esper Tokens we find four [card]Monastery Mentor[/card], [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card], [card]Slaughter Pact[/card], and [card]Lingering Souls[/card]. [card]Curse of Death’s Hold[/card] out of the sideboard is also notable, since token decks seem to be making waves in Modern as more people experiment with [card]Monastery Mentor[/card].

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16, notable decks include Grixis Pyro and Grixis Delver. Grixis Pyro featured [card]Young Pyromancer[/card], [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], and [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card]. Grixis Delver also had Young Pyromancer and experimented with [card]Gurmag Angler[/card]. Jeskai also made an appearance in the Top 16 playing [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] and [card]Restoration Angel[/card], so UWR isn’t quite out of the running in Modern either even if we haven’t seen consistent results in a while.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Legacy (Providence, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Omni-Tell 1st Adam Brennan Miracles 9th Bradley Berk
Temur Delver 2nd Tanner Parente Grixis Pyro 10th Matthew Smith
Miracles 3rd Christopher Stitson Elves 11th Samuel Blau
Sneak and Show 4th Jason Grigely MUD 12th Hunter Prendergast
12-Post 5th Aaron Gazzaniga Abzan Deathblade 13th John-Paul Phelan
Omni-Tell 6th Daniel Hall Omni-Tell 14th Brandon Jones
Death and Taxes 7th Jake Bartlett Omni-Tell 15th Kevin Saunders
Omni-Tell 8th Cory Abrams Elves 16th Nicholas Malatesta

Finally, we had some Legacy action in Providence too and Omni-Tell was the story of this tournament. Not only did the deck take down the event but it also put four other people into the Top 16. In Legacy, a format as diverse as you can possibly get, this doesn’t happen very often and should be a sign that Omni-Tell is going to be a force in the format going forward. As mentioned in the Kyoto section, cards like Omniscience are key components of the deck that allow it play a very unfair game if left unchecked.

12-Post making the Top 8 hasn’t happened in a while. Key cards in that deck include [card]Oracle of Mul Daya[/card], [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card], [card]Candelabra of Tawnos[/card], [card]Crop Rotation[/card], and [card]Ancient Stirrings[/card] with of course the twelve posts ([card]Cloudpost[/card], [card]Glimmerpost[/card], and [card]Vesuva[/card]). The deck is resilient thanks to the land [card]Eye of Ugin[/card] and can come out of nowhere with a surprise win if you’re not expecting it. Though hard to build due to Candelabra being so rare, if your local tournament allows proxies for Legacy this could be an interesting choice to bring to the event if you’re looking for a combo deck that is unique and fun to play.

Grixis Pyro also appeared in Legacy, with notables being [card]True-Name Nemesis[/card], [card]Dack Fayden[/card], [card]Dig Through Time[/card], and [card]Cabal Therapy[/card]. Similar to the Modern version, this deck aims to take a more controlling path to victory.

Abzan Deathblade seems like a new deck archetype that appeared, but its really just a rename of Pikula with the [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card] package. [card]Hymn to Tourach[/card] is a feature in the deck but otherwise it just plays Abzan goodstuff in Legacy.

That’s a wrap for this week! See you next time.

Weekend Magic: 4/10-4/12

This weekend brought us Pro Tour Dragons of Tarkir. After an intense weekend (especially due to all the infractions that were documented) there was a healthy diversity of decks that made the Top 8. Let’s take a look at these decks and see what types of cards from Dragons were seeing play.

Top 8


The deck that took down the whole tournament was Martin Dang’s R/g Aggro, where the only card he was splashing green for was four [card]Atarka’s Command[/card] and one [card]Become Immense[/card] as a surprise finisher. If this hasn’t been stated enough already, [card]Atarka’s Command[/card] is the real deal and you should expect to see it plenty of more times over the course of Khans Standard. Not only that, but the card is also pretty insane in Modern – I hear having some additional [card]Boros Cham[/card] utility is never a bad thing and at rare it means that the card will sustain a much higher price over the long term without a reprint.

Also present from Dragons were three [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card], four [card]Dragon Fodder[/card], and four [card]Roast[/card] out of the sideboard. Zurgo and Dragon Fodder are not suprising, as they can easily increase the clock against opponents who are playing a slower match that provide nice early turn plays to create tempo for the deck. I expect since Dang’s deck is so easily to pilot that we’ll be seeing it more and more over the coming months, unless a control archetype is established that is able to push it out of the format. I think we’ve seen in the past though that Red Deck Wins has been around for quite some time in Standard, and this time yet again I think we’ll be seeing it over the coming months.

Looking at the runnerup’s deck, Shota Yasooka was on Blue-Black Control which is the exact opposite of what Dang’s deck is trying to accomplish. The deck operates much more slowly and eventually builds itself up to a position where it can take down the opponent after establishing control. Two [card]Dragonlord Silumgar[/card], three [card]Icefall Regent[/card], two [card]Foul-Tongue Invocation[/card], four [card]Silumgar’s Scorn[/card], two [card]Ultimate Price[/card], and one [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card]  made the main deck while [card]Ultimate Price[/card], [card]Stratus Dancer[/card], [card]Duress[/card], [card]Virulent Plague[/card], and [card]Dragonlord’s Prerogative[/card] made the sideboard. Based on his results, it looks like Dragons has added plenty of good cards to the control player’s arsenal. [card]Silumgar’s Scorn[/card] especially is a spicy card, since as the game goes on it turns in [card]Counterspell[/card] which is extremely powerful for the mana cost. Control definitely has some exciting days ahead and plenty of new toys to play around with from Dragons.

Rounding out the Top 8, other cards from Dragons making waves include:

  • Four [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] and two [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card] from Starsky’s Green Devotion
  • One [card]Dragonlord’s Prerogative[/card] and one [card]Ultimate Price[/card] from Sullivan’s Blue-Black Control
  • Three [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card], four [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], one [card]Roast[/card], two [card]Draconic Roar[/card], and one [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card] in Chung’s Red-Green Dragons. There was also one more [card]Roast[/card] in the sideboard.
  • Two [card]Ultimate Price[/card] and two [card]Duress[/card] out of the sideboard in Cammilluzzi’s Abzan Control
  • Three [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] and two [card]Shaman of the Forgotten Ways[/card] out of Hendriks’ Green Devotion
  • Two [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card], two [card]Dragonlord Silumgar[/card], two [card]Icefall Regent[/card], one [card]Dragonlord’s Prerogative[/card], three [card]Foul-Tongue Invocation[/card], four [card]Silumgar’s Scorn[/card], two [card]Ultimate Price[/card], and two [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card] in Ohlschwager’s Blue-Black Control. Also one [card]Foul-Tongue[/card] Invocation and one [card]Virulent Plague[/card] out of the sideboard.

As you can see, Dragons affected some decks more than others. We’ll have to wait and see how Standard will be shaken up over the next few weeks based on the results. Until then, we’ll just have to take a look at the numbers from 24-27 points or better to see if there are any other Dragons of Tarkir cards that did well yet didn’t make the Top 8 of the tournament.

24-27 Points or Better

Some trending cards from the rest of the top finishers include:

  • Even though the card didn’t make the Top 8, [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] was one of the most played cards in the tournament from Dragons. There were multiple decks playing three to four copies since it is very versatile in the current Standard. I expect we’ll continue to see plenty of Dromoka’s Commands being cast over the coming months, along with of course [card]Atarka’s Command[/card].
  • Let’s also not forget about [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card]. This efficient, death-touching lizard beast is certainly going to be used to nicely fill out curves over the coming months. Not only does it provide a decent threat that is also a rattlesnake, it also has recursion in the late game! You can’t ask much more from your three drops which is why plenty of pros opted to play Clever Girl.
  • [card]Den Protector[/card] is a surprising notable, and while not every green mage was packing them this weekend they still showed up across a few different decks that did well. It has just enough going for it that it can be a decent threat that like Raptor allows you to recur things later in the game. Keep an eye out for Protectors, as not every morph is going to be Raptor from this point on!
  • [card]Secure the Wastes[/card] – Only viable in token strategies, but it can really do work when your opponent isn’t expecting it! Having a surprise four tokens at the end of a turn that are ready to attack with a [card]Jeskai Ascendency[/card] in play are not joke.
  • [card]Sidisi, Undead Vizier[/card] – Yes, due to her utility and [card]Demonic Tutor[/card] powers the pros also felt that Sidisi had much to offer. The only downside is that sometimes you don’t exploit because you need the body, and other times you’re paying five mana for Demonic Tutor which is pretty terrible. When it works though, it works well.
  • [card]Encase in Ice[/card], [card]Self-Inflicted Wound[/card], [card]Display of Dominance[/card], [card]Rending Volley[/card] – Great sideboard cards are great, so expect to see some hate for your color’s enemies as we continue through Standard due to the new color hosers getting printed in Dragons.
  • Minor appearances were also made by [card]Ojutai Exemplars[/card], [card]Dragonlord Dromoka[/card], [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card], [card]Dragon Whisperer[/card], and [card]Collected Company[/card] but not enough copies were seen to note any trends amongst all the 24-27 decks. These cards appeared more as tech rather than real threats that were the core of the player’s deck.

There we are, with another Pro Tour come and gone. Though many players have despaired Dragons as being a “weak” set, I think this Pro Tour has proven that there is power in several of the cards that have been printed. In the grand scheme of things, I think we’ll need to wait and see if anything else emerges but this is what we have for now in Standard. Until next week!

Weekend Magic: 4/3-4/5

Last weekend brought us Star City Games: Syracuse. This Open featured Standard as the main event with a side of Modern and Legacy. Let’s see what the results were and note any trending cards amongst the lists.

Star City Games Open – Standard (Syracuse, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
G/R Aggro 1st Chris VanMeter Jund Midrange 9th Gerard Fabiano
Abzan Aggro 2nd Jesse Grogan R/G Aggro 10th Aaron Garitillo
Temur Aggro 3rd Andrew Nacci Jeskai Tokens 11th Todd Anderson
Mono-Red Aggro 4th Michael Egolf Abzan Aggro 12th John Davison
R/g Aggro 5th Ryan Sandrin R/g Aggro 13th Chris Thomas
G/R Aggro 6th Stephen Rice G/R Aggro 14th Xavier Biron
Bant Heroic 7th Tom Ross G/R Aggro 15th Brandon Pascal
G/R Aggro 8th Van Nguyen Abzan Aggro 16th Max Mitchell

Chris VanMeter took down the event piloting G/R Aggro, which also put three other people into the Top 8 and another four into the Top 16 (basically half the top 16 was G/R, though there were differing archetypes among these decks which I’ll get to later). This has been an established Standard archetype ever since [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card] was introduced to Standard with Theros block but it definitely looks like Dragons of Tarkir has given this deck some tools to make it really strong. Chris is playing three Xenagos along with some new additions from Dragons of Tarkir. The deck featured a playset of [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], two [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card], a playset of [card]Draconic Roar[/card], and two [card]Roast[/card]. Last week, we saw that Roast is one of the most played uncommons in Standard at the moment, because five damage for two mana is extremely efficient.  The deck also played three copies of [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card], which I’m sure was nice to recur killed Atarka’s for value. Even getting back [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] and [card]Strombreath Dragon[/card] is pretty nice too, especially if you can play them on curve the turn that you sacrifice the land to return them to your hand. In the sideboard, there is another [card]Roast[/card] along with [card]Seismic Rupture[/card] from Dragons.

G/R Aggro Decks in general were playing the following cards from Dragons:

  • Midrange Version
    • [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card] (playset)
    • [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card] (two to three copies)
    • [card]Draconic Roar[/card] (two to four copies)
    • [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card] (one to three copies)
    • [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card] showed up in two lists as well
  • True Aggro Version
    • [card]Lightning Berserker[/card] (two to four copies)
    • [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card] (three to four copies)
    • [card]Atarka’s Command[/card] (three to four copies)

The second place deck, Abzan Aggro, featured a playset of [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] across the main deck and sideboard. Other notable cards included were a playset of [card]Siege Rhino[/card], [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], and three [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card].

Notables from the rest of the Top 8:

  • Three [card]Frostwalker[/card], four [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], three [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], and two [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card] in Temur Aggro
  • Four [card]Lightning Berserker[/card] and three [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card] in Mono-Red Aggro
  • Four [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] in Bant Heroic

Notables from the rest of the Top 16:

  • One [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] and two [card]Sidisi, Undead Vizier[/card] from Jund Midrange. This deck is pretty interesting as we’ve never seen a deck before that’s tried to combine [card]Outpost Siege[/card] into a G/B deck build but as we’ve seen over the past several months we should just learn to expect as much from Fabiano!
  • One [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card], three [card]Anticipate[/card], and two [card]Secure the Wastes[/card] in Jeskai Tokens
  • Three [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] in Davison’s Abzan Aggro, along with three [card]Ultimate Price[/card] out of the sideboard
  • Two [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card] and two [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card] in Mitchell’s Abzan Aggro

Though it would appear that G/R or R/g strategies dominated this Standard Open, there was still plenty of innovation going on even in established lists like U/W/x Heroic.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Modern (Syracuse, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Affinity 1st James Harrod Hatebears 9th David Gree
G/W Hate Bears 2nd Kyle Dauch Abzan Midrange 10th John Boccardo`
Jund Midrange 3rd Andrew Boswell Abzan Collected Company 11th Max Brown
Abzan 4th Jacob Lee Abzan Midrange 12th Kevin Florio
U/R Twin 5th Nick Kent G/R Tron 13th Taylor Stovenson
Affinity 6th Andrew Skorik UR Delver 14th Edgar Bustos
Jund Midrange 7th Rudy Briskza Grixis Twin 15th Dan Jessup
Abzan Midrange 8th MIchael Derzco Affinity 16th Randy Belcher

Affinity took down the Modern portion of the event, with another copy of Affinity, two Abzan, and two Jund decks also placing in the Top 8. The second place deck was G/W Hatebears, which is a deck that can do well at Modern events if they are packing the right type of hate. Key cards from Dauch’s deck included four [card]Aven Mindcensor[/card], four [card]Leonin Arbiter[/card], four [card]Noble Hierarch[/card], three [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card], and three [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card]. The deck was strangely packing many 1-of’s without any way to tutor for them, which is interesting but allows easier sideboard decisions I guess. [card]Horizon Canopy[/card] also helps filter through the deck, so maybe that was the reason he didn’t want to play more than one [card]Gaddock Teeg[/card] or [card]Linvala, Keeper of Silence[/card]. Either way, the deck did well and will continue to put up results in Legacy as Wizards continue to print more “hate” creatures in green and white.

Who says [card]Dark Confidant[/card] is irrelevant in Modern? Boswell’s Jund Midrange was packing a full playset of Bob and he seemed to do pretty well at this event coming in third. Though it should be noted that the other Top 8 Jund Midrange did not play any copies of Bob and also reached about the same level of success. We even have our first Dragons of Tarkir card featured in this deck, one [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card] out of the sideboard. Speaking of which, looking at Briskza’s list he was playing two copies of [card]Kolaghan’s Command[/card], one in the main deck and one in the sideboard. Another card featured in the decks was [card]Huntmaster of the Fells[/card], with one version opting to play two copies main deck and the other version playing two copies in the sideboard.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16, another copy of Hatebears appears along with a new deck called Abzan Collected Company. Featuring four Dragons of Tarkir [card]Collected Company[/card], the deck also utilizes [card]Congregation at Dawn[/card] in order to setup some pretty C.C situations where you’re going to get a ton of value. Is this the new direction that the old [card]Birthing Pod[/card] deck are going to go? I’m not sure if its good enough to play at larger events but the build is so unique that I would love to see it continue to see more results. It even plays [card]Anafenza, Kin-Tree Spirit[/card] for value with [card]Melira, Sylvok Outcast[/card]!

Star City Games Premier IQ – Modern (Legacy, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Jeskai Stoneblade 1st David Melendez Death and Taxes 9th Adam Quinlon
Deadguy Ale 2nd Wilkin Chau Deadguy Ale 10th Aaron Webster
Miracles 3rd Drew Brantner Elves 11th Erik Burger
Grixis Control 4th Jason Smith Storm 12th Bryant Cook
Miracles 5th Ronald Mackenzie Dark Maverick 13th Jesse Adams
Shardless Sultai 6th Ted McCulskie Burn 14th Nicholas Herbs
Mono-Red Burn 7th Jacob Shannon Jund 15th Douglas Wilson
Sultai Delver 8th Elliot Wolchesky Sultai Delver 16th Paulo Cesari

Deadguy Ale is the story of this Legacy event, which put two people into the Top 16. A deck that hasn’t put up any results in quite some time, Deadguy Ale is pretty much your classic B/W discard heavy deck that plays efficient threats while tearing the opponent’s hand apart. More recently, the deck has been called Pikula since Chris Pikula brought it back as an Abzan-based deck, however the original name hearkens back to the days when it was only black and white.

[card]Hymn to Tourach[/card] is usually seen, but not always. In this case, Chau’s opted to play Hymn while Webster chose to splash green for [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] and [card]Abrupt Decay[/card]. Chau’s deck stuck to a main deck of black/white only spells with a splash of green for sideboard answers like [card]Engineered Explosives[/card] and [card]Gaddock Teeg[/card]. [card]Chrome Mox[/card] is an interesting addition to the deck, which allows it to play [card]Lingering Souls[/card], [card]Vindicate[/card], or [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card] a turn earlier than expected. You could even have a turn one [card]Dark Confidant[/card] or [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card]! Certainly an interesting deck to say the least.

Dark Maverick is also a more unique deck. Notables included four [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card], four [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card], and four [card]Green Sun’s Zenith[/card]. Dark refers to playing black for [card]Abrupt Decay[/card] and some choice sideboard cards. [card]Sigarda, Host of Herons[/card] also showed up in this build as a nice GSZ target against [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card].

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16 is pretty much your average Legacy metagame these days. Nothing really innovative or exciting in the rest of the lists.

That’s all for this week! Keep checking back for more weekend Magic results.

Weekend Magic: 3/27-3/29

Last weekend Star City Games brought us two major events: the Invitational and SCG Richmond. The Invitational featured Standard and Legacy action while Richmond featured Standard as the main event with a side of Modern and Legacy. Let’s take a look and see how Dragons of Tarkir has shaken up the format.

Star City Games Invitational (Richmond, USA)

Format – Standard, Legacy

Standard Top 8  Decklists

Deck Finish Player
Abzan Control 1st Jacob Wilson
Sultai Reanimator 2nd Reid Duke
Abzan Aggro 3rd Jason Coleman
G/W Devotion 4th Chris Andersen
Mono-Red Aggro 5th Michael Braverman
Jeskai Tokens 6th Todd Anderson
Abzan Control 7th Joe Bass
R/G Aggro 8th Ross Merriam

Legacy Top 8 Decklists

Deck Finish Player
Temur Delver 1st Jacob Wilson
Miracles 2nd Reid Duke
Lands 3rd Jason Coleman
Esper Thopter Foundry 4th Chris Andersen
Shardless Sultai 5th Michael Braverman
Infect 6th Todd Anderson
Miracles 7th Joe Bass
Sultai Delver 8th Ross Merriam

Standard Results

Jacob Wilson’s Standard deck featured two [card]Sidisi, Undead Vizier[/card] main deck. This new Sidisi seems pretty good in a control build. In Abzan, she can exploit Elspeth tokens and [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card]s in order to find the particular card that the deck’s pilot needs at that moment. Also being a 4/6 with deathtouch means that she is really hard to deal with. I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of Sidisi in Standard over the next few months, along with the all the action she is sure to see at the Commander tables.

Reid Duke’s Standard deck also featured two undead versions of Sidisi along with a single copy of [card]Dragonlord Silumgar[/card] in the main deck. [card]Sidisi, Brood Tyrant[/card] was one of the deck’s main card advantage engines and was a key component to Reid’s Standard success that weekend. Some other interesting cards from the deck included one [card]Torrent Elemental[/card] and one [card]Silumgar, the Drifting Death[/card].

Rounding out the rest of the Standard decks, some cards to to prepare to play against in future tournaments include:

  • [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card], which appeared in Abzan Aggro and G/W Devotion. This was the only command from Dragons of Tarkir to appear in the Top 8 decks.
  • [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card], which of course slotted nicely as a full playset into the G/W Devotion deck based around Mastery of the Unseen
  • [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card], which was featured a playset in Mono-Red Aggro despite being legendary.
    • [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card] also made a Standard appearance in this deck as a playset.
    • I also didn’t think [card]Lightning Striker[/card] would get played, but the Dash ability on the creature can’t be underestimated. I’m sure there were plenty of random blowouts that happened when Berserker came down and stomped face.
  • [card]Anticipate[/card] saw play in Jeskai Tokens, to help the deck find [card]Jeskai Ascendancy[/card] faster
  • [card]ThunderBreak Regent[/card] and [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card] slotted nicely into R/G Aggro. [card]Crater’s Claws[/card] is still being played as a playset in this deck, and the two copies of [card]Draconic Roar[/card] can do a ton of work if you’re still holding dragons in your hand as you cast it.

Legacy Results

Dragons of Tarkir didn’t quite have the impact it made on Standard. In fact, there weren’t any cards from Dragons in the Legacy results. [card]Dig Through Time[/card] is now seeing plenty of play without [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] in the format anymore.

Temur Delve and Miracles are run-of-the-mill decks at this point, and Wilson’s and Duke’s lists aren’t innovative in any way. [card]Dig Through Time[/card] is now a three-of in Miracles in order to help sift through the deck faster to get the lockdown pieces.

Moving onto Lands, it is a unique deck but doesn’t have much in the way of innovation either. Some of the key cards to the deck include the [card]Thespian’s Stage[/card] / [card]Dark Depths[/card] combo and the [card]Grove the Burnwillows[/card] / [card]Punishing Fire[/card] synergy in order to control the board while you’re setting up the more deadly finisher.

Esper Thopter Foundry is a deck that has been seen before but hasn’t put up results in a while. Now that the format has slowed down a bit more after the post Cruise banning, more decks that can really take advantage of the card selection [card]Dig Through Time[/card] offers are popping up. This deck features a full playset of [card]Dig Through Time[/card] and plays enablers like [card]Mental Note[/card] and [card]Thought Scour[/card] to help cast the Dig’s quicker. At it’s heart, this deck is a control deck and wins by using the [card]Sword of the Meek[/card] / [card]Thopter Foundry[/card] combo to generate tons of 1/1 flyers and gain enough life survive until they can kill you. Certainly an interesting deck that harkens back to the old [card]Vampire Hexmage[/card] / [card]Dark Depths[/card] / [card]Thopter Foundry[/card] / [card]Sword of the Meek[/card] / [card]Gifts Ungiven[/card] extended deck.

The rest of the Legacy Top 8 doesn’t offer us anything new to the format. We still see [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] making an appearance here and there in order to generate card advantage but nothing else of note.

Star City Games Open – Standard (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Jeskai Heroic 1st Joe Lossett R/G Aggro 9th Ryan Macedo
Abzan Aggro 2nd Hunter Nance Abzan Aggro 10th Drew Cranfill
R/G Aggro 3rd Dan Jessup G/R Devotion 11th Joseph Eckert
G/R Monsters 4th Chas Tanner Jeskai Tokens 12th Patrick Tierney
G/W Devotion 5th David Fulk Ascendancy Combo 13th Zach Jesse
Jeskai Tokens 6th Alex Bianchi G/W Devotion 14th Scott Robins
Jeskai Aggro 7th Noah Walker Jeskai Aggro 15th Derek Campbell
R/G Aggro 8th Trevor Bumgardner Mono-Red Aggro 16th Sean Handy

The Standard Open at Richmond continues to offer us insight into the new format. I’ve crunched the numbers from the Top 16 to see which cards, by rarity, are seeing the most play (at least at this event).


Mythic Rare12 [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card]

12 [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card]

9 [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card]

8 [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card]

7 [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card]

5 [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card]***

4 [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card]

4 [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card]

2 [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card]

2 [card]Wingmate Roc[/card]

2 [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card]

2 [card]Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker[/card]

2 [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card]***

1 [card]Soul of Theros[/card]

1 [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]

1 [card]Nissa, Worldwaker[/card]

Rare28 [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card]

25 [card]Mana Confluence[/card]

20 [card]Wooded Foothills[/card]

19 [card]Flooded Strand[/card]

16 [card]Windswept Heath[/card]

16 [card]Sylvan Caryatid[/card]

15 [card]Temple of Triumph[/card]

15 [card]Battlefield Forge[/card]

14 [card]Temple of Abandon[/card]

13 [card]Boon Satyr[/card]

12 [card]Shivan Reef[/card]

12 [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card]

12 [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Ny[/card]

12 [card]Jeskai Ascendancy[/card]

10 [card]Temple of Epiphany[/card]

9 [card]Temple of Plenty[/card]

8 [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card]***

8 [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card]***

8 [card]Siege Rhino[/card]

8 [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card]

8 [card]Mantis Rider[/card]

8 [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card]

8 [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card]***

8 [card]Crater’s Claws[/card]

8 [card]Courser of Kruphi[/card]

8 [card]Atarka’s Command[/card]***

7 [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card]***

7 [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card]

7 [card]Hero’s Downfall[/card]

6 [card]Temple of Silence[/card]

6 [card]Temple of Enlightenment[/card]

6 [card]Genesis Hydra[/card]

6 [card]Dig Through Time[/card]

5 [card]Llanowar Wastes[/card]

5 [card]Den Protector[/card]***

5 [card]Caves of Koilos[/card]

4 [card]Outpost Siege[/card]

4 [card]Hero of Iroas[/card]

3 [card]Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth[/card]

3 [card]Twinflame[/card]

3 [card]Temple of Mystery[/card]

3 [card]Temple of Malady[/card]

3 [card]Secure the Wastes[/card]***

2 [card]Yavimaya Coast[/card]

2 [card]Thoughtseize[/card]

2 [card]End Hostilities[/card]

2 [card]Collected Company[/card]***

2 [card]Anafenza, Kin-Tree Spirit[/card]

1 [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]

1 [card]Hornet Queen[/card]

1 [card]Hidden Dragonslayer[/card]***

1 [card]Haven of the Spirit Dragon[/card]***

1 [card]Firedrinker Satyr[/card]

Uncommon28 [card]Stoke the Flames[/card]

21 [card]Wild Slash[/card]

17 [card]Mystic Monastery[/card]

16 [card]Hordeling Outburst[/card]

12 [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card]

11 [card]Valorous Stance[/card]

11 [card]Seeker of the Way[/card]

8 [card]Sandsteppe Citadel[/card]

6 [card]Searing Blood[/card]

6 [card]Heir of the Wilds[/card]

4 [card]Ordeal of Thassa[/card]

4 [card]Favored Hoplite[/card]

4 [card]Draconic Roar[/card]***

4 [card]Battlewise Hoplite[/card]

3 [card]Frontier Bivouac[/card]

3 [card]Bile Blight[/card]

2 [card]Ultimate Price[/card]***

2 [card]Temur Sabertooth[/card]

2 [card]Roast[/card]***

2 [card]Ordeal of Heliod[/card]

2 [card]Lightning Berserker[/card]***

2 [card]Briber’s Purse[/card]

2 [card]Banishing Light[/card]

2 [card]Abzan Charm[/card]

1 [card]Murderous Cut[/card]

1 [card]Kiora’s Follower[/card]

1 [card]Jeskai Charm[/card]

1 [card]Frenzied Goblin[/card]

Common20 [card]Lightning Strike[/card]

20 [card]Elvish Mystic[/card]

13 [card]Anticipate[/card]***

12 [card]Foundry Street Denizen[/card]

12 [card]Dragon Fodder[/card]***

10 [card]Treasure Cruise[/card]

9 [card]Voyaging Satyr[/card]

6 [card]Raise the Alarm[/card]

5 [card]Mardu Scout[/card]

4 [card]Temur Battle Rage[/card]

4 [card]Retraction Helix[/card]

4 [card]Gods Willing[/card]

4 [card]Goblin Heelcutter[/card]

4 [card]Dragon Mantle[/card]

4 [card]Defiant Strike[/card]

3 [card]Commune with the Gods[/card]

3 [card]Collateral Damage[/card]

3 [card]Center Soul[/card]***

3 [card]Blossoming Sands[/card]

2 [card]Tormenting Voice[/card]

2 [card]Rugged Highlands[/card]

1 [card]Negate[/card]

1 [card]Lagonna-Band Trailblazer[/card]

Sideboard15 [card]Glare of Heresy[/card]

14 [card]Roast[/card]***

13 [card]Disdainful Stroke[/card]

10 [card]Nissa, Worldwaker[/card]

8 [card]Wild Slash[/card]

8 [card]Valorous Stance[/card]

8 [card]Destructive Revelry[/card]

8 [card]Arc Lightning[/card]

7 [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card]

7 [card]Negate[/card]

7 [card]Hornet Nest[/card]

7 [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card]

6 [card]Searing Blood[/card]

6 [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card]

5 [card]Thoughtseize[/card]

5 [card]Setessan Tactics[/card]

5 [card]Magmatic Chasm[/card]***

5 [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card]

4 [card]Seismic Rupture[/card]***

4 [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card]

4 [card]Arbor Colossus[/card]

4 [card]Anger of the Gods[/card]

3 [card]Treasure Cruise[/card]

3 [card]Swan Song[/card]

3 [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]

3 [card]Rending Volley[/card]***

3 [card]Reclamation Sage[/card]

3 [card]Ojutai Exemplars[/card]***

3 [card]Nylea’s Disciple[/card]

3 [card]Duress[/card]

3 [card]Drown in Sorrow[/card]

3 [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card]***

3 [card]Display of Dominance[/card]***

3 [card]Bile Blight[/card]

2 [card]Ultimate Price[/card]***

2 [card]Stubborn Denial[/card]

2 [card]Scouring Sands[/card]

2 [card]Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker[/card]

2 [card]Prognostic Sphinx[/card]

2 [card]Ordeal of Heliod[/card]

2 [card]Monastery Siege[/card]

2 [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card]

2 [card]Magma Spray[/card]

2 [card]Hammer of Purphoros[/card]

2 [card]End Hostilities[/card]

2 [card]Cloudform[/card]

2 [card]Ainok Survivalist[/card]***

2 [card]Abzan Advantage[/card]

1 [card]Vaultbreaker[/card]

1 [card]Temple of Triumph[/card]

1 [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]

1 [card]Outpost Siege[/card]

1 [card]Nylea, God of the Hunt[/card]

1 [card]Liliana Vess[/card]

1 [card]Lagonna-Band Trailblazer[/card]

1 [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card]

1 [card]Hornet Queen[/card]

1 [card]Hall of Triumph[/card]

1 [card]Goblin Heelcutter[/card]

1 [card]Erase[/card]

1 [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card]***

1 [card]Dig Through Time[/card]

1 [card]Den Protector[/card]***

As you can see, there are numerous cards that have taken up homes in Standard decks at this event. [card]Deathmist Raptor[/card] and [card]Dragonlord Atarka[/card] were the only mythics to be seen at the Top 16 in the main decks, while [card]Dragonlord Ojutai[/card] and [card]Ojutai’s Exemplars[/card] were mythics that were played in sideboards.

Looking at the rares, the most played new rares from the set include [card]Thunderbreak Regent[/card], [card]Surrak, the Hunt Caller[/card], [card]Dromoka’s Command[/card], and [card]Atarka’s Command[/card]. [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card] was seen in mono-red decks, and [card]Den Protector[/card] and [card]Secure the Wastes[/card] had brief appearances. Someone tried to make [card]Collected Company[/card] work marginally by including two copies in a deck but there was no breakout Collected Company deck totally centered around the card.

Roast was the breakout uncommon of the set, with sixteen copies appearing across main decks and sideboards. [card]Anticipate[/card] and [card]Dragon Fodder[/card] were the breakout commons, as was probably expected since they are both efficient cards for their mana cost.

All in all, there were definitely some shakeups but nothing too crazy. No new archetypes were formed. However, existing ones got a few boosts from the new cards.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Modern (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Affinity 1st Joseph Greer Abzan Midrange 9th Patrick Older
Infect 2nd Michael Allen Jund 10th Van Nguyen
U/W Tron 3rd Mike Kenney U/R Twin 11th Will Benton
Grixis Control 4th Dave Shiels U/R Twin 12th Jason Bennett
Jeskai Control 5th Travis Perlee Abzan Midrange 13th Michael Derczo
Merfolk 6th John Taylor Affinity 14th Betrix Ryan
Merfolk 7th Brandon Frey Esper Control 15th Christopher Mahaffey
Zoo 8th Jeff Szablak Jund 16th Joseph Herrera

Things seem have to shaken up in Modern, at least in Richmond. Outside of the finalists, the decks are ones that usually don’t see Top 8 appearances.

U/W Tron is one that seems to breaking out recently. Notable cards from the deck include one [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card], four [card]Azorius Signet[/card], four [card]Gifts Ungiven[/card], and four [card]Thirst for Knowledge[/card]. This deck is interesting in that you can win with [card]Celestial Colonnade[/card] but also have a Gifts package to get whatever is needed at the moment. My suspicion is that this is a deck that you need to be intimately familiar with in order to pilot to success – there are several lines of play that this deck can go down, and knowing all of them takes a lot of practice. It’s good to see control being better in Modern, where just a month ago it seems that aggro, midrange, and combo were the only decks.

Speaking of which, another two control decks were in the Top 8. Grixis Control featured three [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], two [card]Go for the Throat[/card], and a package of other counterspells and burn in order to control the game until you get a [card]Blood Moon[/card] or [card]Vedalken Shackles[/card] online. Jeskai Control featured [card]Gideon Jura[/card] as a wind condition along with [card]Anticipate[/card] from Dragons of Tarkir, a single [card]Logic Knot[/card], and splashing black for [card]Lingering Souls[/card] / [card]Mystical Teachings[/card] flashback.

Also, two Merfolk lists made the Top 8! Notables from Merfolk included [card]Master of Waves[/card], [card]Tidebinder Mage[/card], [card]Mutavault[/card], [card]Aether Vial[/card], and [card]Monastery Siege[/card] from Fate Reforged. Looks like Merfolk has really made ahem a splash in Modern now and we’ll be seeing it for some time to come since it is a pretty easy to pilot aggro/tempo deck.

Finally, [card]Collected Company[/card] made a nice debut in Modern Zoo, with the 8th place deck playing a full twenty-seven creatures and three [card]Collected Company[/card] to back them up. [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card] is back in business folks and it’s pretty sick to rip that and, say, [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] off the top of your deck at instant speed. [card]Kessig Wolf Run[/card] is a cute addition too, as it allows you to completely blow someone out if they’re not expecting it. [card]Bonfire of the Damned[/card] out of the sideboard is an interesting choice, I guess it helps against token strategies?

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16 were some run of the mill decks like Jund, Twin, and Abzan Midrange. Esper Control was the only outlier here. This deck had a full playset of [card]Monastery Mentor[/card], along with [card]Murderous Cut[/card], [card]Slaughter Pact[/card], [card]Thought Scour[/card], and Tasigur in order to help recur spells back. [card]Creeping Tar Pit[/card] is also a nice finisher in the deck. Despite both [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] and [card]Dig Through Time[/card] being banned in Modern, Delve still seems to be a thing.

Star City Games Premier IQ – Legacy (Richmond, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Reanimator 1st Nick Patnode Temur Delver 9th Zack Kanner
Infect 2nd Tom Ross Lands 10th Micah Greenbaum
Miracles 3rd Shawn French Death and Taxes 11th Christopher Calhoun
Miracles 4th Brian Braun-Duin Dredge 12th Andrew Shrout
Death & Taxes 5th Jessie Butler Temur Delver 13th Stephen Mann
Elves 6th Ryan Hare Omni-Tell 14th Collins Mullen
Jeskai Delver 7th Thomas Trovato Lands 15th Brandon Dempsey
Shardless Sultai 8th Chi Hoi Yim Death & Taxes 16th Jacob Eckert

Like I’ve mentioned in the Invitational section, Legacy hasn’t been shaken up much from the Dragons of Tarkir release. Elves is playing [card]Ruric Thar, the Unbowed[/card] as a nice finisher against control decks. That’s about all the innovation I see in the lists here. Legacy is still pretty much Legacy, even after Dragons has hit the shelves.

Whew, guess that’s it for this week. Keep checking back weekly for all the action that happened the previous weekend that you may have missed!

Weekend Magic: 3/13-3/15

Last weekend brought us Star City Games Dallas, which featured Standard as the main event with a side of Modern and Legacy. Let’s take a look at the results while also bearing in mind that Standard will yet again be shaken up by Dragons of Tarkir in just another week. We’ve got the full spoiler up, let’s see what opportunities the new cards might have in Standard.

Star City Games Dallas – Standard Open (Dallas, TX – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai Control 1st Michael Miller R/W Aggro 9th Aakash Barevadia
Jeskai Aggro 2nd Jim Davis Abzan Midrange 10th Jaxon Day
Sultai Control 3rd Dan Jessup Jeskai Aggro 11th Patrick Tierney
Jeskai Aggro 4th Dylan Lerch Abzan Aggro 12th matthew cooper
Abzan Midrange 5th Jacob Geeo R/W Aggro 13th Brock Mosley
Mono-Red Aggro 6th JB Milo Abzan Aggro 14th Gabriel Joglar
Sultai Reanimator 7th Masa Tokutome Jeskai Aggro 15th Nathan Blackmon
Jeskai Heroic 8th Jason Crone Abzan Midrange 16th Jake Peralez

Sultai Control took down the event, piloted by Michael Miller. [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card] does a surprising amount of work in the deck. Not only does it fuel [card]Dig Through Time[/card], [card]Treasure Cruise[/card], and [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] from the sideboard, but it also chump blocks early in the game against faster aggro decks. It seems strange to see the Satyr without [card]Whip of Erebos[/card], but the third place Sultai Control was also running the full playset of Satyrs without Whip. This clearly means its inclusion was well-merited.

What are possible inclusions from Dragons of Tarkir that might go in Sultai Control?


I see all the above cards as having potential, with [card]Silumgar’s Command[/card] being the strongest candidate for inclusion. [card]Dragonlord Silumgar[/card] might be too much mana for the effect, while [card]Icefall Regent[/card] has the issue of only having three toughness. [card]Explosive Vegetation[/card] could be pretty sweet, as ramping up two lands in a single turn is quite powerful. By turn five, you have seven lands on the board and can more quickly deploy a threat like [card]Garruk, Apex Predator[/card] followed the next turn by [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card].

Jeskai Aggro took second and fourth place. Which cards from Dragons could make the most impact in this build?


Ojutai’s Exemplars is a card which could find a home in Jeskai Aggro. The deck’s curve tops out at four with [card]Outpost Siege[/card], so taking out a [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card] or two for some copies of Exemplars might be good. There are just so many options on this card in addition to it being an efficient four-mana 4/4 creature. Even if it doesn’t find a home in aggro, I think we’ll be seeing this card pop up in decklists over the coming months due to its versatility.

Rouding out the top eight were Abzan Midrange, Mono-Red Aggro, Sultai Reanimator, and Jeskai Heroic. Mono-Red Aggro is getting some pretty nice cards in Dragons.

dragonscards3 dragonscards4

While [card]Commune with Lava[/card] and [card]Dragon Fodder[/card] might be stretching it, I definitely think that [card]Dragon Whisperer[/card], [card]Ire Shaman[/card], and [card]Zurgo Bellstriker[/card] all have a place in Mono-Red Aggro.

Whisperer gives the deck a nice end game that it’s currently lacking, while also being able to apply pressure in the early game. Ire Shaman is a great beatdown creature that can generate card advantage. Zurgo Bellstriker is an extremely efficient beater that can also be Dashed into play during the late game if you top deck him and need the extra two points of damage.

I like Commune with Lava because it generates a large amount of card advantage, though I admit that Mono-Red Aggro probably won’t play this but G/R Devotion might be able to include this card. Dragon Fodder into [card]Hordeling Outburst[/card] seems good to me; however, Dragon Fodder is significantly weaker than Hordeling Outburst in the late game. Also, the new enchantment that hoses tokens is an issue.


Regardless, I like Dragon Fodder and think that it will have a home, if not in Mono-Red Aggro then in token strategies.

Rounding out the top eight: two R/W Aggro, two Abzan Midrange, two Jeskai Aggro, and two Abzan Aggro decks.

There aren’t any additional cards from Dragons that I’ve identified that would fit into the rest of top 16 (since it is so similar to the top eight), but I like the following cards for Standard and feel they will make an impact:

dragonscards6 dragonscards7 dragonscards8

Ojutai’s Command – This card slots nicely as a one-of or two of in Jeskai strategies or possibly a four-of in U/W Control.

Dragonlord Dromoka – It could possibly be included in Abzan strategies. It also could spawn a G/W deck along with other new cards from Dragons.

Anafenza, Kin-Tree Spirit – Seems like a good inclusion in fast aggro decks. Might not have a home now but her future looks bright. Kind of stinks that we can’t use her in token strategies, but oh well.

Kolaghan’s Command, Atarka’s Command – Both commands are undercosted and have efficient effects. Though none of the effects are great singularly, combined together and with the mana cost they can be quite useful in many situations.

Secure the Wastes – This feels like a strong finisher card to me. I realize that it’s not [card]Decree of Justice[/card], but the effect is so similar that it still might see play in control lists.

Shorecrasher Elemental – Mono-Blue Devotion might be revived again due to this card, and it might even have implications beyond Standard (Modern Merfolk, maybe?).

Descent of the Dragons – This card could totally spawn a new archetype or bolster the power of current tokens decks. Either way, I’ll be excited the first time I see this cast on camera for a major blowout if it happens!

Deathmist Raptor – Very efficient green beater than can easily trade up into bigger targets in the late game. I like in G/R Devotion, which has some Morph creatures already that can take advantage of the recursion.

Collected Company – I feel that this card might spawn its own archetype as the effect is really powerful for only four mana. Yes, the creatures need to cost three or less, but if you build a deck around the odds of getting two creatures when you cast this then it becomes much better. The critic in me thinks that this card might just be a little bit too random to be great in Standard but you never know.

Star City Games Dallas – Modern IQ (Dallas, TX – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Infect 1st Joel Heath U/R Twin 9th Dale Montgomery
Amulet Combo 2nd Mason Young Burn 10th Andres Hernandez
Sultai Control 3rd Cruz Hale U/R Twin 11th Jack Stewart
Abzan Midrange 4th Andres Campion Burn 12th Donovan Lachney
R/W Burn 5th Joshua Kendall Burn 12th Donovan Lachney
Affinity 6th Brandon Borowicz U/R Twin 14th Craig Goebel
U/R Delver 7th Eddie Solis Amulet Combo 15th Aaron Barich
Merfolk 8th David Gomez Infect 16th Minh Tran

Infect and Amulet Combo continue to do well after the Modern Pro Tour in DC. Taking first and second at this Modern IQ, they have established themselves as Modern archetypes that are here to stay.

Looking at the rest of the Top 8, the decks that stand out to me are Sultai Control, R/W Burn, and Merfolk.

One of these decks featured some sweet tech. Yes, that’s right folks: [card]Monastery Siege[/card] tech in the Merfolk list! Analyzing Monastery Siege, we can see why it’s such a great card in Modern. The second mode hoses Burn and decks that have tons of removal, while the first mode gives you card advantage in control matchups where you are the aggressor and need to finish the game quickly. All in all, an interesting Merfolk list that tells us Monastery Siege is Modern-playable.

Rounding out the rest of the top 16 were Burn, U/R Twin, Amulet Combo, and Infect. Nothing new to report in these decks.

Star City Games Dallas – Legacy IQ (Dallas, TX – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Ad Nauseam 1st Caleb Scherer Burn 9th Trent Avera
Grixis Delver 2nd David Houghton Temur Delver 10th Simon Christie
Miracles 3rd Ken-Min Yeoh Merfolk 11th William Yowell
Reanimator 4th Noah Cohen Infect 12th Ben Wallace
Sultai Delver 5th Tom Nelson U/G Cloudpost 13th Alex Khanin
Reanimator 6th Aaron Segrest Temur Delver 14th Trevor Leinbach
Death and Taxes 7th Blake Donnan Show and Tell 15th Zach Taylor
Lands 8th Chris Cohen Infect 16th Tom Ross

Ad Nauseam took down the Legacy event, with Grixis Delver coming in at second place. Grixis Delver contained a one-of of [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] main deck. Ban [card]Treasure Cruise[/card]? Players will find some other one-mana nonsense to play. Delve is that good.

Not a ton of Legacy shakeups this week, but with Dragons of Tarkir on the horizon, there just might be some in the near future. Stay tuned.

Weekend Magic: 3/6-3/8

WOTC and Star City Games teamed up to host Grand Prix Miami this past weekend, which will further add to the Standard results we’ve been seeing since Fate Reforged was released. However, we also need to keep in mind that Dragons of Tarkir is right around corner and that Standard again is due for another shakeup. Let’s take a look at the top decks to see which cards performed well.

Grand Prix Miami (USA)

Format – Standard


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
G/W Devotion 1st Daniel Cecchetti Mardu Aggro 9th Osyp Lebedowicz
G/W Devotion 2nd Corey Baumeister W/U Heroic 10th Bradley Carpenter
Abzan Reanimator 3rd Chad Kastel Abzan Midrange 11th Jaelin Funk
Abzan Aggro 4th Ralph Betesh G/W Devotion 12th Brad Nelson
Mono-Red Aggro 5th Ryan Grodzinski Sultai Midrange 13th Yuanji Li
Mono-Red Aggro 6th Brian Lee Jeskai Aggro 14th Kevin Jones
Abzan Aggro 7th Andrew Boswell Abzan Aggro 15th Aaron Barich
Naya Aggro 8th Zan Syed G/R Devotion 16th Ruben Perez

G/W Devotion was the deck to beat that weekend, with two copies claiming the first and second spots in the tournament. Of course, we all know that Corey Baumeister might not have gotten second without his big brother Brad conceding to him in Round 15. What a great guy, right? Looks like his sacrifice paid off—even though Corey didn’t win the tournament, he still did fantastic.

Let’s quickly compare Daniel Cecchetti’s list to Baumeister’s. Cecchetti opted to play fewer [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card]s and instead focused on [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card] and [card]Voyaging Satyr[/card], along with including a one-of [card]Temur Sabertooth[/card] for future value from [card]Genesis Hydra[/card]s or other creatures. Corey’s list was more straightforward. He decided not to go with Temur Sabertooth and instead put in an additional [card]Banishing Light[/card] along with the full playset of Fleecemane Lions to control the early game.

[card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] should definitely be on everyone’s radar at this point. It started out at $4 in January and then spiked to $12 after results started coming in from the first Fate Reforged Standard events showcasing its power. Now, that power has been shown on camera at a GP final match for everyone to see. Whisperwood has proven that it is a Standard powerhouse that is capable of taking down a large tournament. I’m not sure how much more it can rise in the short term, but throughout the rest of its Standard life, there is a good chance it will continue to see play in green-based midrange strategies. Whisperwood is certainly a card to watch moving forward.


However, [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] was the real financial winner from this event. The TCGplayer median price on copies is now almost $5 when it could be had for low as $0.25 last week! If you were one to get in on Mastery of the Unseen before the GP, then you are doing quite well right now. This is definitely a short-term spike, so move any extra copies that you have before the price starts coming back down again. We need to keep in mind that Dragons of Tarkir is just around the corner, so even though G/W Devotion did incredibly well this weekend, that may not be the case another month or two from now. Take your profits and move along.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were Abzan Reanimator, two Abzan Aggro, two Mono-Red Aggro, and Naya Aggro decks. Naya Aggro sounds pretty interesting to me so let’s take a look at that deck first.

One card to look out from Naya Aggro is [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card]. It was played as a four-of in the deck, and could see an uptick of demand based on its various top 16 appearances. Again, we see [card]Outpost Siege[/card] playing a role as a finisher or a card advantage engine, along with [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card] as efficient removal for the best creatures in the format. I imagine Shaman was drawing plenty of cards off the back of pumped up [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card]s and [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card]s. Another interesting inclusion was the [card]Mob Rule[/card] pair in the sideboard, which is great against both token strategies and decks that rely too heavily on gigantic creatures to finish the game for them.

Abzan Reanimator is a pretty stock list that utilizes [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] to help create card advantage. There was a playset of [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card] in both Abzan Aggro decks, which makes its price of $1 seem very appealing. A playset of [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card] was included in Boswell’s deck, which focused heavily on creatures. Surprisingly, [card]Wingmate Roc[/card] has gotten pretty cheap recently. It is now sitting around $7, its lowest price to date. Is there a chance that the Roc could back up in price over the rest of the year? I think so, considering how powerful it is if you can trigger the raid ability consistently. Gaining life is just icing on the cake.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 16 were Mardu Aggro, W/U Heroic, Abzan Midrange, another G/W Devotion, Sultai Midrange, Jeskai Aggro, another Abzan Aggro, and G/R Devotion.

Cards to watch include:

  • [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], [card]Outpost Siege[/card], and three [card]Wild Slash[/card] from Mardu Aggro.
  • Three [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], two [card]Torrent Elemental[/card] , and [card]Sidisi, Brood Tyrant[/card] out of Sultai Midrange.
  • [card]Mantis Rider[/card], two [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], and three [card]Dig Through Time[/card] out of Jeskai Aggro.
  • Three [card]Mardu Strike Leader[/card] out of Abzan Aggro.
  • [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], thee [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card], four [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card], three [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card], and two [card]Crater’s Claws[/card] out of G/R Devotion.

That’s it for this weekend. Keep checking in for more updates every week of what happened and what cards you should watch based on results!

Weekend Magic: 2/27-3/1

This week brought us Star City Games: Baltimore, where Modern was the featured format with a side of Standard and Legacy. Let’s dive into the results to see what innovations were showcased this weekend.

Star City Games: Baltimore – Modern Open (Baltimore, MD – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai 1st Gerard Fabiano Infect 9th Robert Lee
U/R Twin 2nd Seth Manfield Infect 10th Stephen White
U/R Twin 3rd Jeff Folinus Jeskai Control 11th Kevin Thomas
4-color Control 4th Jonathan Sukenik Infect 12th Andrew Jessup
Jund 5th Hugo Rodrigues Scapeshift 13th Gregory Romine
Temur Twin 6th Todd Anderson Abzan 14th Robert Pompa
Temur Moons 7th Jeff Hoogland Abzan 15th Christopher Juliano
W/B Tokens 8th Elliott Jones Abzan 16th Jon Goss

Gerard Fabiano keeps on killing it on the Star City circuit, taking down the Modern Open and continuing to add to his major finishes record. Piloting an innovative Sultai list, this deck features several cards that were previously unseen at the top tables of Modern tournaments. Highlights from the deck include two [card]Thragtusk[/card], two [card]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/card], a single [card]Jace, Architect of Though[/card], two [card]Damnation[/card], and two [card]Creeping Tar Pit[/card].

Ashiok is currently out of stock at Star City Games at $18. The planeswalker is definitely on an upswing from the lows it experienced back around the $9 price point.

Ashiok Price History 03-02-2015

This is the type of card that casual players salivate over, so the casual demand in addition to the Standard and now Modern demand of the card will bolster the price in the short term. U/B Control in Standard will continue to be a deck thanks to [card]Crux of Fate[/card] and other cards, so Ashiok seems well positioned in the Standard metagame. Of course, as the summer lull approaches the planeswalker’s price will drop back down a bit but I can’t see it ever going below $10 again. I will definitely be watching for deals on Ashiok during the late summer and through rotation.

Going back to Gerard’s deck, [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card] is also quite cheap at $3 or less. This is due to the Duel Deck printing but now that it’s possible for Jace, AOT to have a home in Modern, I could see this price starting to tick up over the next few months.

[card]Thragtusk[/card] is also cheap at $2.50 and less—this was a card that was once $25 or more when it was in Standard. Could we also seen an upswing in Thragtusk prices as well? Foils seem cheap to me if you can get them for $8 or less.

[card]Creeping Tar Pit[/card] is among the cheaper of the Worldwake manlands at $9 per copy. I would caution a MM2 reprint here, though—the Worldwake manlands could easily be included in MM2 or even another supplemental product like Commander. The only reason to pick them up is If you can quickly flip them based on the hype of the Sultai win, because I don’t think the risk of waiting to see if they are in MM2 is worth it. The same could be said of [card]Damnation[/card]—another card players have been clamoring to see reprinted, and already with a hefty price tag, I would stay away from [card]Damnation[/card] with the looming MM2 set on the horizon.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8 were two copies of U/R Twin, 4-Color Control, Jund, Temur Twin, Temur Moons, and W/B Tokens.

Four-Color Control seems like a very unique deck based on the name, but is really just Jeskai Control that splashes black for [card]Lingering Souls[/card], [card]Mystical Teachings[/card], and sometimes [card]Shadow of Doubt[/card]. The only financially relevant news from the deck’s result is that [card]Mystical Teachings[/card] foils spiked hard after someone saw the single copy in the decklist.

Temur Moons is a spin on the Blue Moon deck that splashes green for the one and only [card]Tarmogoyf[/card]. Out of the sideboard, it gains access to [card]Engineered Explosives[/card] and [card]Nature’s Claim[/card] as well. [card]Blood Moon[/card] has been a card that has seen a ton of play recently and has also seen a Modern Masters reprint. I’m not sure if we can expect it to be in MM2 too. If it isn’t, then I expect [card]Blood Moon[/card]’s price to continue climbing since it seems to be shining in a Modern format that mostly consists of three color decks and decks like Temur Moons (Blood Moon) that punish them. Another interesting deck choice is [card]Boomerang[/card]—a nice trick if you drop a Blood Moon, then bounce a creature (or permanent) that they can’t cast again back to their hand. Quickly, buy out all the foils just like [card]Mystical Teachings[/card], guys!

Finally, the last unique deck to make Top 8 is W/B Tokens. The notable cards from this deck include two [card]Hero of Bladehold[/card], a playset of [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card], [card]Lingering Souls[/card], two [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card], and two [card]Bitterblossom[/card]. [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] is pretty cheap for a Standard-legal planeswalker that sees play in Mardu and Abzan strategies. He’s currently only $13.50, so I’ll be watching to see if he starts going up in price due to his Modern playability combined with Standard applications.

The rest of the Top 16 was much less diverse. Three Abzan and three Infect decks, along with Jeskai Control and Scapeshift. Abzan and Infect have been covered pretty extensively since the Pro Tour, so nothing new financially from those decks. Scapeshift also hasn’t changed much so nothing new from that deck either. Jeskai Control seems to be on a downward swing since it has a hard time against many of the new decks in the format. However, cards to watch from that deck include [card]Ajani Vengeant[/card], [card]Restoration Angel[/card], and [card]Sphinx’s Revelation[/card].

Star City Games: Baltimore – Standard IQ (Baltimore, MD – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
R/W Aggro 1st Andrew Skorik Sultai Control 9th Robert Seder
Jeskai Aggro 2nd Kevin Jones Jeskai Aggro 10th Andrew Davis
U/W Heroic 3rd Zach Jesse W/U Heroic 11th Chas Hinkle
Abzan Midrange 4th William Dean R/W Aggro 12th David Reed
U/B Control 5th Ted Felicetti R/W Aggro 13th Tim Candee
Abzan Aggro 6th Elliot Wolchesky Sultai Control 14th Jonathan Alvarado
Abzan Aggro 7th Andrew Boswell R/W Aggro 15th Stan Smith
U/B Control 8th Garrick Mathis G/B Constellation 16th Christopher Wright

R/W Aggro took down the Standard IQ piloted by Andrew Skorik. Nothing financially notable from the deck that hasn’t been discussed before. [card]Outpost Siege[/card], [card]Wild Slash[/card], and [card]Ashcloud Phoenix[/card] are the cards to watch.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Jeskai Aggro, U/W Heroic, two U/B Control, Abzan Midrange, and two Abzan Aggro decks. Notable cards from these decks include:

  • [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card] from Abzan Midrange and Boswell’s Abzan Aggro.
  • [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card] and [card]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/card] from Mathis’ U/B Control.
  • [card]Dig Through Time[/card] from both U/B Control decks.
  • [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] and [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] from Wolchesky’s Abzan Aggro.
  • [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card], which appeared as a playset in both Abzan Aggro lists.
  • [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card] out of Boswell’s Abzan Aggro list

Star City Games: Baltimore – Legacy IQ (Baltimore, MD – USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Painter 1st Jack Kitchen Dredge 9th Andrew Shrout
Lands 2nd David Long Death and Taxes 10th Allen Norman
Maverick 3rd Raymond Cornely Temur Delver 11th Aaron Parsons
Lands 4th Ralph Betesh Sultai Delver 12th Dan Jessup
Elves 5th David Perry Storm 13th Caleb Scherer
Metalworker 6th Justin Moss Sultai Delver 14th Bob Huang
Dredge 7th Eric Copenhaver Jeskai Delver 15th Adonnys Medrano
Sultai Delver 8th Bob Marshall Jeskai Stoneblade 16th Shaun Dickson

Painter took down the Legacy IQ with Jack Kitchen at the helm. Painter is what I like to call a pet deck in Legacy – which means that it is hard to pilot correctly without extensive playtesting, can easily be hated out with the right sideboard, and usually contains a card (or cards) that 95 percent of the playerbase can’t find or afford. Painter’s issue is containing a playset of [card]Imperial Recruiter[/card], where the cheapest version is the judge foil for $160 per copy. Like Lands (which also appeared in the Top 8 twice), it’s basically the same as getting [card]The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale[/card]—the deck doesn’t run well without it and will set you back about $800 or more for a copy, thus limiting the number of players who can potentially play the deck.

Regardless, there are cards in Painter that are financially relevant. [card]Painter’s Servant[/card] (and foils), [card]Grindstone[/card], and [card]Blood Moon[/card] are all important pieces of the deck and could see gains. [card]Ancient Tomb[/card] and [card]City of Traitors[/card] seem to have come down slightly in price from their highs, but with enough exposure in Legacy events, these lands could once again bounce back in price.

The rest of the Top 8 included two Lands decks, Maverick, Elves, Metalworker, Dredge, and Sultai Delver. Notable cards include:

  • [card]Mox Diamond[/card] and [card]Manabond[/card] (which has lowered to about $2.50 retail) from Lands. [card]Gamble[/card] spiked pretty hard last year up to $20 but hasn’t moved much from there. [card]Dark Depths[/card] also hasn’t moved from its spike to $50 around the same time.
  • [card]Kuldotha Forgemaster[/card], [card]Lodestone Golem[/card], and [card]Metalworker[/card] from the Metalworker deck. [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card] has taken a huge hit in price from the Commander printing, yet will go back up in time from it’s lows due to its use in Modern, Legacy, and Commander. [card]Chalice of the Void[/card] and [card]Grim Monolith[/card], especially foils, should also be watched.

Other notables from the Top 16 include:

  • [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card] in Death and Taxes, due to Tiny Leaders along with Legacy and Modern demand.
  • [card]Nimble Mongoose[/card] in Temur Delver, especially foils.
  • [card]True-Name Nemesis[/card], which has dropped to its lowest price ever at $17.50 since it was released in Commander 2013.
  • [card]Abrupt Decay[/card], [card]Deathrite Shaman[/card], and [card]Dark Confidant[/card] were seen quite a bit throughout the Top 8 and Top 16 results.

That’s all for this week! Keep coming back for more summaries of last weekend’s Magic action.

Weekend Magic: 2/20-2/22

This certainly wasn’t a weekend to miss. Two grands prix, along with Star City Games Open Series in Los Angeles, means there is a ton of information for us to digest. Let’s dig in and see the results.

Grand Prix: Memphis (Memphis, TN – USA)

Format – Standard

Top 8 Decklists

Jack Fogle took down the event piloting Sultai Control. Notables from the deck included two [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card], four [card]Dig Through Time[/card], two [card]Crux of Fate[/card], and three [card]Sultai Charm[/card]. Temples also made a strong showing alongside [card]Opulent Palace[/card] in the deck; however, many temples have failed to go above $4 even this late into the Standard season. I expect that Theros supplies will be drying up soon, so if you have any extra temples the upcoming months will be the time to move them to maximize your value.

Ben Stark was the runner-up, piloting R/W Aggro. His list featured a full playset of [card]Outpost Siege[/card] (which has already reached $3 and will continue to climb in price if it is featured as a mainstay in red decks from now on) along with four [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card]s, four [card]Hordeling Outburst[/card]s, four [card]Wild Slash[/card]es, and four [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card]. Also notable are three copies of [card]Valorous Stance[/card] across the main deck and sideboard. Could Soulfire Grand Master be the real deal? Its price has halved since the preorder phase of Fate Reforged. However, Ben Stark’s finish could generate interest toward the card and a higher price.

The rest of the Top 8 wasn’t so diverse. Five Abzan Control decks and another R/W Aggro list rounded out the top tables. Let’s first talk about trends among the Abzan Control decks.

  • [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card] – The play here is to dump your copies as soon as possible due to the impending Duel Deck reprint. Her price will crash hard once this deck is released en masse.
  • [card]Thoughtseize[/card] – Hovering around $20 TCGplayer median, Thoughtseize has room to grow before the summer as Theros dries up. I don’t expect it to fall below $17 ever again, so if you can pick them up at or near this price, I think it will be a good move. This is a great card for the long term as Modern and Legacy will drive demand for years.
  • [card]Siege Rhino[/card] – Rhino has been trending upwards on the backs of both Standard and Modern demand. It’s $8 TCGplayer median, which is on the higher side for large set rares. I don’t expect Rhino to fall, but I doubt it is going to reach $16 or more any time soon. Pick up your copies if you need them for Standard or Modern, but otherwise avoid Rhino as a financial speculation target.
  • [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] – With a price driven by both low supply and hype due to results, Tasigur is now around $9, down three dollars from the $12 Pro Tour DC hype. I expect Tasigur to maintain a price of $6 to $9 moving forward through his Standard life. Cheap foils are where you want to look if you want extra copies. Even foils for $25 seem good since Tasigur sees both Modern and Legacy play.
  • [card]Sandsteppe Citadel[/card] – Wedge tap lands are very cheap right now. If you can buy them in large quantities for $0.40 or cheaper, its a no brainer. The shards tap lands have had multiple printings and today are at least $1.50. Wedge lands should follow a similar pattern in the future. Make room in a bulk box, collect and fill, wait a while, and see results.

Finally, the other R/W Aggro deck that made the Top 8 included four [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], two [card]Outpost Siege[/card], and two [card]Brimaz, King of Oreskos[/card]. Brimaz and Stormbreath have passed their peak and will decrease in price upon rotation. Outpost Siege has potential but at $3 it is a high buy-in price. I fear the window has passed for making large profits on Outpost Siege, since the odds of it hitting $6 or higher seem slim to me.

Grand Prix: Vancouver (Vancouver, CA)

Format – Modern

Top 8 Decklists

Dan Lanthier won the Vancouver GP piloting Blue-Red Twin, further cementing the deck’s presence in the Modern metagame. Second place went to Affinity, another respectable deck that continues to put up good results.

Notables from the Twin deck include two [card]Grim Lavamancer[/card]s in the main deck, along with two [card]Keranos, God of Storms[/card] out of the sideboard. Lavamancer has been trending upwards and has passed $5 due to the recent success of two-toughness creatures in the format. Picking up a few copies seems like a good play if you can trade for them. On a side note, Torment foils are $93 and higher! On the other hand, Keranos will soon rotate from Standard. However, his price is mainly driven by Modern demand (perceived or otherwise). Keranos could drop upon Theros rotation, and if he does, that will be the time to get in.

Nothing notable from Affinity, barring cards that could see a MM2 reprint. [card]Mox Opal[/card] and [card]Steel Overseer[/card] are at the top of the list, and with the incoming reprint of [card]Etched Champion[/card], there could certainly be other reprints from the deck. Trade or buylist any extra Affinity pieces you have since they will most likely continue to drop through the summer.

Rounding out the rest of the Top 8, the decks included Infect, Bogles, two Abzan, and two Amulet Bloom decks. Infect, Abzan, and Amulet Bloom have been covered pretty extensively since the pro tour, so I will limit my discussion to Bogles to see where the deck is heading.

Truth be told, Bogles could become a very cheap deck once MM2 is released. The most expensive pieces of the deck are [card]Spellskite[/card], [card]Daybreak Coronet[/card], and [card]Horizon Canopy[/card]. Thankfully, [card]Kor Spiritdancer[/card] has already had a reprint, which is keeping its price in check around $6. However, players have been howling for reprints for all three of the other cards I’ve mentioned. If reprinted, their prices would crash considerably, and then Bogles would be a very cheap deck to pick up. Bogles tends to be hit or miss—either it does really well, or you can mulligan to four regularly with it and just shrug when you lose. If reprinted, pieces of the deck will gain in value over time, but the gains will be much slower. If you have Spellskite, Daybreak Coronet, and Horizon Canopy and aren’t playing Bogles, I urge you to consider whether the risk of reprint is worth holding onto the cards at this point.

SCG Open: Los Angeles (USA) – Standard


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
R/W Aggro 1st Chad White Abzan Midrange 9th Vidianto Wijaya
Naya Midrange 2nd David Moline Jeskai Aggro 10th Joey Nguyen
Abzan Midrange 3rd Qian Shen Jeskai Tokens 11th Michael Boland
G/R Devotion 4th William Miller G/R Devotion 12th Simon Sung
R/W Aggro 5th Nick Gil Temur Midrange 13th Yurien Seyssel
W/U Heroic 6th Nicholas Allen Jeskai Aggro 14th Kelvin Young
Mono-Red Aggro 7th Gary Quach Mono-Red Aggro 15th Juan Hernandez
Jeskai Heroic 8th Zach Scales W/U Heroic 16th Michael Nunez

R/W Aggro took down the Standard portion. Again, [card]Outpost Siege[/card] should be noted and watched closely moving forward.

Naya Midrange took second place. This deck featured a full playset of [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card]s, two [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card], two [card]Purphoros, God of the Forge[/card], two [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card], and a single [card]Shamanic Revelation[/card]. Whisperwood Elemental seems to be picking up steam, as the price has doubled since Fate Reforged was released. I’m not sure how much more room it has to grow, but if midrange strategies like this Naya version start popping up again, you can expect another increase in Whisperwood’s price.

Notable cards from the rest of the Top 8 include:

  • Four [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card]s and three [card]Shamanic Revelation[/card] in G/R Devotion
  • Four [card]Mardu Scout[/card]s, three [card]Outpost Siege[/card]s, and four [card]Wild Slash[/card]s in Mono-Red Aggro
  • Four [card]Temur Battle Rage[/card] in Jeskai Heroic

Notables cards from the Top 16 include:

  • Two [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card] in Nguyen’s Jeskai Aggro
  • Four [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], three [card]Genesis Hydra[/card], four [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card], and four [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] in Sung’s G/R Devotion
  • Four [card]Ashcloud Phoenix[/card], four [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], four [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], three [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card], three [card]Stubbon Denial[/card], and four [card]Crater’s Claws[/card] out of Temur Midrange
  • Four [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], four [card]Monastery Mentor[/card], and four [card]Wild Slash[/card] in Young’s Jeskai Aggro

SCG Premier IQ: Los Angeles (USA) – Modern


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
U/R Delver 1st Calvin Kim Abzan Midrange 9th Chris Blair
Abzan Midrange 2nd Shaun Hughes Affinity 10th Bryan De La Torre
Scapeshift 3rd Paul Cuillier 4-Color Gifts 11th Francis Cellona
R/W Burn 4th Rick Chong Merfolk 12th Sam Green
Storm 5th Derk Chad U/W Tron 13th Levi McNeese
R/W Burn 6th Seung Han R/W Aggro 14th Steven Cotera
B/W Tokens 7th Michael Terasaki Affinity 15th Alex To
Abzan Midrange 8th Chang Han Jeskai Control 16th Nicholas Chapman

U/R Delver took down the Modern IQ in LA. It appears that [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] is still crushing it, despite the [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] banning. Foils are still commanding a solid $40 and I don’t see them moving from there any time soon. Also, [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card] is on the rise and is over $40 TCGplayer median. I see this continuing to increase with the recent success of U/R Twin and Delver in Modern. However, [card]Remand[/card] and [card]Serum Visions[/card] are due for a big price drop if they are reprinted in MM2, and I expect that these cards are near the top of someone’s list at Wizards for a reprint.

Scapeshift, Storm, and B/W Tokens made an impressive showing in the Top 8. Cards to watch from these decks include:

  • Scapeshift
    • [card]Cryptic Command[/card] – Again, I sense the MM2 reprint on the horizon due to the huge price tag of this card regardless of a reprint already in the first MM set.
    • [card]Scapeshift[/card] – The deck’s namesake card is also pretty expensive at $20 and due for a reprint.
    • Again, [card]Remand[/card] and [card]Serum Visions[/card] reprints should help lower the cost of this deck.
  • Storm
    • More of a pet deck than anything, but cards to watch from this deck include [card]Lotus Bloom[/card], [card]Gemstone Mine[/card] (also due to Amulet Bloom success), [card]Ad Nauseum[/card], [card]Angel’s Grace[/card], and [card]Pact of Negation[/card]. Also, [card]Favor of the Mighty[/card] out of the sideboard is good tech against U/R Twin and Bogles!
  • B/W Tokens
    • Cards to watch from this deck include [card]Hero of Bladehold[/card], [card]Elspeth Tirel[/card], [card]Angelic Destiny[/card], [card]Intangible Virtue[/card] (FOIL), [card]Midnight Haunting[/card] (FOIL), [card]Gather the Townsfolk[/card] (FOIL), [card]Lingering Souls[/card], and [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card].
      • On a side note, check out the manabase – two [card]Scoured Barrens[/card]!? And three [card]Inkmoth Nexus[/card], to get that sweet three turn clock with [card]Elspeth, Knight-Errant[/card]!

4-Color Gifts, Merfolk, and U/W Tron made the Top 16. Cards to watch from these decks include:

  • 4-Color Gifts
    • [card]Gifts Ungiven[/card], [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], and [card]Lingering Souls[/card]
  • Merfolk
    • [card]Mutavault[/card], [card]Cavern of Souls[/card], [card]Master of Waves[/card], and [card]Aether Vial[/card]
  • U/W Tron
    • [card]Emrakul, the Aeons Torn[/card], [card]Krark-Clan Ironworks[/card], [card]Thopter Foundry[/card], [card]Mox Opal[/card], [card]Open the Vaults[/card]
      • Definitely not your traditional Tron list! More like a re-envisioning of Eggs.

SCG Premier IQ: Los Angeles (USA) – Legacy


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Bant Stoneblade 1st Alex Gellerman Dredge 9th Joseph Moreno
Sultai Delver 2nd Jeffrey Simpson Jeskai Stoneblade 10th Mitchell Nguyen
Infect 3rd Michael Nguyen Infect 11th Brett Jensen
Storm 4th Thomas Kainz Sneak and Show 12th David Nguyen
Grixis Delver 5th Mathew Chung MUD 13th Jake Weinmann
MUD 6th Grant Gutierrez Storm 14th Caleb Scherer
Sultai Delver 7th Tannon Grace Punishing Naya 15th Chris Arebalo
Jeskai Stoneblade 8th Fred Chen Jund 16th Corey Armstrong

Bant Stoneblade took down the Legacy portion. Highlights from this deck include [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card] (which is yet to be seen in Modern, though it may have its day), [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card], and [card]Green Sun’s Zenith[/card]. Like [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], Stoneforge Mystic has also been climbing in price recently. It currently sits at $35 and will continue to trend upwards since we can reasonably assume it won’t be in MM2 due to its banning in Modern. Green Sun’s Zenith is in the same boat: a low chance of a reprint and lots of Legacy play means that it too will trend upwards as time goes on.

Other notables from the Top 8 include [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] in Simpson’s Sultai Delver and Chung’s Grixis Delver as well as [card]Kuldotha Forgemaster[/card] (which recently saw a price increase to $5), [card]Metalworker[/card], and [card]Grim Monolith[/card] in MUD.

Jund and Punishing Naya were the other outlier decks of the Top 16. Cards to watch from Punishing Naya include [card]Domri Rade[/card] and all other cards mentioned for Bant Stoneblade. Cards to watch from Jund include [card]Bloodbraid Elf[/card] (especially if it is unbanned in Modern eventually), [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card], [card]Sylvan Library[/card] (especially Commander’s Arsenal foils, which recently spiked in price), and [card]Grove of the Burnwillows[/card] (for price decline due to impending MM2 reprint).

Last Thoughts

There was a ton of action last weekend, especially with some of the camera matches. Who can forget the board full of manifest creatures and the confusion resulting from them? Will we still complain about the crap quality of WOTC’s streaming? It’s hard to say, but hopefully they’ve gotten the point now that SCG is way better at streaming than they are.

Regardless of any technical difficulties, last weekend gave us a ton of data to see the direction of Stand, Modern, and Legacy. The trick is putting it to use in figuring out which cards are the most financially impacted.

PT Fate Reforged: 18 Match Points (6-4) or Better, By the Numbers

Based on comments from my previous article, I would like to take a more in-depth approach to Pro Tour Fate Reforged. Covering only the top eight leaves out many of other archetypes that were present over the weekend. This time, I’m going to look at all the players who earned at least 18 match points (a 6-4 record equivalent) and see if there are any deeper trends that the top eight did not show. First we’ll look at the data, then note the trends that are present, and finally see if there are any undervalued cards that haven’t caught up with the pro tour hype.


A-E, F-L, M-R, S-Z

18 Match Points or Better, By the Numbers

Mythic Rare Uncommon
136 [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] 197 [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card] 116 [card]Lingering Souls[/card]
107 [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card] 124 [card]Windswept Heath[/card] 115 [card]Path to Exile[/card]
32 [card]Mox Opal[/card] 123 [card]Siege Rhino[/card] 102 [card]Inquisition of Kozilek[/card]
25 [card]Grove of the Burnwillows[/card] 123 [card]Thoughtseize[/card] 73 [card]Boros Charm[/card]
22 [card]Dark Confidant[/card] 121 [card]Abrupt Decay[/card] 72 [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card]
21 [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card] 108 [card]Marsh Flats[/card] 59 [card]Might of Old Krosa[/card]
20 [card]Primeval Titan[/card] 102 [card]Scalding Tarn[/card] 58 [card]Skullcrack[/card]
16 [card]AEther Vial[/card] 97 [card]Noble Hierarch[/card] 55 [card]Become Immense[/card]
16 [card]Karn Liberated[/card] 92 [card]Inkmoth Nexus[/card] 48 [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]
12 [card]Windbrisk Heights[/card] 88 [card]Wooded Foothills[/card] 45 [card]Remand[/card]
11 [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card] 83 [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] 39 [card]Lightning Helix[/card]
10 [card]Doran, the Siege Tower[/card] 80 [card]Misty Rainforest[/card] 33 [card]Dismember[/card]
9 [card]Master of Waves[/card] 76 [card]Goblin Guide[/card] 32 [card]Darksteel Citadel[/card]
8 [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] 72 [card]Overgrown Tomb[/card] 32 [card]Springleaf Drum[/card]
8 [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] 68 [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card] 28 [card]Deceiver Exarch[/card]
6 [card]Dryad Arbor[/card] 62 [card]Arid Mesa[/card]
5 [card]Batterskull[/card] 55 [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]
5 [card] Vesuva[/card] 54 [card]Sacred Foundry[/card]
4 [card]Emrakul, the Aeons Torn[/card] 51 [card]Bloodstained Mire[/card]
4 [card]Eye of Ugin[/card] 51 [card]Godless Shrine[/card]
4 [card]Sphinx’s Revelation[/card] 47 [card]Breeding Pool[/card]
4 [card]Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas[/card] 47 [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card]
4 [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card] 45 [card]Steam Vents[/card]
4 [card]Vengevine[/card] 45 [card]Stomping Ground[/card]
3 [card]Past in Flames[/card] 42 [card]Stirring Wildwood[/card]
2 [card]Archangel of Thune[/card] 39 [card]Temple Garden[/card]
2 [card]Chandra, Pyromaster[/card] 37 [card]Cryptic Command[/card]
2 [card]Murmuring Bosk[/card] 37 [card]Twilight Mire[/card]
1 [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card] 32 [card]Arcbound Ravager[/card]
1 [card]Gideon Jura[/card] 32 [card]Blinkmoth Nexus[/card]
1 [card]Linvala, Keeper of Silence[/card] 31 [card]Grim Lavamancer[/card]
1 [card]Sigarda, Host of Herons[/card] 31 [card]Splinter Twin[/card]
1 [card]Sorin, Lord of Innistrad[/card] 30 [card]Pendelhaven[/card]
1 [card]Sundering Titan[/card] 30 [card]Wild Defiance[/card]
1 [card]Sword of Feast and Famine[/card] 29 [card]Glimmervoid[/card]
1 [card]Sword of Fire and Ice[/card] 29 [card]Spellskite[/card]
1 [card]Sword of Light and Shadow[/card] 26 [card]Flooded Strand[/card]
1 [card]Thrun, the Last Troll[/card] 24 [card]Steel Overseer[/card]
23 [card]Birds of Paradise[/card]
22 [card]Maelstrom Pulse[/card]
21 [card]Sulfur Falls[/card]
20 [card]Amulet of Vigor[/card]
20 [card]Gemstone Mine[/card]
20 [card]Summoner’s Pact[/card]
18 [card]Gavony Township[/card]
16 [card]Fulminator Mage[/card]
16 [card]Oblivion Stone[/card]
16 [card]Scapeshift[/card]
15 [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card]
14 [card]Blackcleave Cliffs[/card]
14 [card]Etched Champion[/card]
14 [card]Hive Mind[/card]
13 [card]Master of Etherium[/card]
13 [card]Razorverge Thicket[/card]
13 [card]Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth[/card]
12 [card]Blood Moon[/card]
12 [card]Cavern of Souls[/card]
12 [card]Celestial Colonnade[/card]
12 [card]Lord of Atlantis[/card]
12 [card]Master of the Pearl Trident[/card]
12 [card]Mutavault[/card]
12 [card]Wilt-Leaf Liege[/card]
11 [card]Azusa, Lost but Seeking[/card]
10 [card]Blood Crypt[/card]
10 [card]Hallowed Fountain[/card]
10 [card]Pact of Negation[/card]
10 [card]Polluted Delta[/card]
10 [card]Vault of the Archangel[/card]
9 [card]Courser of Kruphi[/card]
9 [card]Desolate Lighthouse[/card]
9 [card]Living End[/card]
9 [card]Restoration Angel[/card]
9 [card]Seachrome Coast[/card]
9 [card]Slaughter Pact[/card]
8 [card]Bloodghast[/card]
8 [card]Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle[/card]
8 [card]Wanderwine Hub[/card]
7 [card]Auriok Champion[/card]
6 [card]Isolated Chapel[/card]
6 [card]Tidebinder Mage[/card]
5 [card]Honor of the Pure[/card]
5 [card]Slayers’ Stronghold[/card]
5 [card]Supreme Verdict[/card]
4 [card]Bitterblossom[/card]
4 [card]Clifftop Retreat[/card]
4 [card]Fetid Heath[/card]
4 [card]Flagstones of Trokair[/card]
4 [card]Flooded Grove[/card]
4 [card]Gravecrawler[/card]
4 [card]Horizon Canopy[/card]
4 [card]Leonin Arbiter[/card]
4 [card]Life from the Loam[/card]
4 [card]Lotleth Troll[/card]
4 [card]Mana Confluence[/card]
4 [card]Phantasmal Image[/card]
4 [card]Pyromancer Ascension[/card]
4 [card]Ranger of Eos[/card]
4 [card]Serra Ascendant[/card]
4 [card]Tempered Steel[/card]
4 [card]Tendo Ice Bridge[/card]
4 [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card]
4 [card]Watery Grave[/card]
3 [card]Copperline Gorge[/card]
3 [card]Engineered Explosives[/card]
3 [card]Golgari Grave-Troll[/card]
3 [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card]
3 [card]Woodland Cemetery[/card]
2 [card]Glacial Fortress[/card]
2 [card]Hinterland Harbor[/card]
2 [card]Mirran Crusader[/card]
2 [card]Mystic Gate[/card]
2 [card]Raging Ravine[/card]
2 [card]Shivan Reef[/card]
2 [card]Squee, Goblin Nabob[/card]
2 [card]Swan Song[/card]
2 [card]Sygg, River Guide[/card]
2 [card]Temple of Mystery[/card]
1 [card]Cascade Bluffs[/card]
1 [card]Chord of Calling[/card]
1 [card]City of Brass[/card]
1 [card]Dragonskull Summit[/card]
1 [card]Fire-Lit Thicket[/card]
1 [card]Ghostfire Blade[/card]
1 [card]Llanowar Wastes[/card]
1 [card]Minamo, School at Water’s Edge[/card]
1 [card]Oboro, Palace in the Clouds[/card]
1 [card]Profane Command[/card]
1 [card]Ruric Thar, the Unbowed[/card]
1 [card]Slaughter Games[/card]
1 [card]Underground River[/card]
1 [card]Vengeful Pharaoh[/card]
1 [card]Yavimaya Coast[/card]


Common Sideboard
131 [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] 93 [card]Stony Silence[/card]
68 [card]Lava Spike[/card] 90 [card]Fulminator Mage[/card]
68 [card]Rift Bolt[/card] 78 [card]Spellskite[/card]
63 [card]Serum Visions[/card] 65 [card]Nature’s Claim[/card]
63 [card]Treetop Village[/card] 59 [card]Destructive Revelry[/card]
61 [card]Gitaxian Probe[/card] 52 [card]Molten Rain[/card]
61 [card]Searing Blaze[/card] 48 [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card]
60 [card]Blighted Agent[/card] 47 [card]Ancient Grudge[/card]
60 [card]Glistener Elf[/card] 38 [card]Kor Firewalker[/card]
59 [card]Mutagenic Growth[/card] 36 [card]Twisted Image[/card]
56 [card]Vines of Vastwood[/card] 35 [card]Dispel[/card]
32 [card]Apostle’s Blessing[/card] 35 [card]Spell Pierce[/card]
32 [card]Cranial Plating[/card] 31 [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card]
32 [card]Ornithopter[/card] 27 [card]Creeping Corrosion[/card]
32 [card]Vault Skirge[/card] 26 [card]Path to Exile[/card]
31 [card]Ancient Stirrings[/card] 26 [card]Thoughtseize[/card]
31 [card]Shard Volley[/card] 24 [card]Engineered Explosives[/card]
26 [card]Distortion Strike[/card] 23 [card]Lightning Heli[/card]
24 [card]Sleight of Hand[/card] 21 [card]Negate[/card]
20 [card]Simic Growth Chamber[/card] 21 [card]Smash to Smithereens[/card]
18 [card]Mana Leak[/card] 20 [card]Dismember[/card]
16 [card]Chromatic Sphere[/card] 19 [card]Combust[/card]
16 [card]Expedition Map[/card] 18 [card]Batterskull[/card]
16 [card]Pestermite[/card] 18 [card]Blood Moon[/card]
16 [card]Sakura-Tribe Elder[/card] 18 [card]Obstinate Baloth[/card]
16 [card]Search for Tomorrow[/card] 16 [card]Duress[/card]
15 [card]Gruul Turf[/card] 16 [card]Swan Song[/card]
14 [card]Groundswell[/card] 15 [card]Chalice of the Void[/card]
14 [card]Spreading Seas[/card] 14 [card]Anger of the Gods[/card]
12 [card]Deadshot Minotaur[/card] 14 [card]Etched Champion[/card]
12 [card]Demonic Dread[/card] 14 [card]Slaughter Games[/card]
12 [card]Monstrous Carabid[/card] 14 [card]Sower of Temptation[/card]
12 [card]Street Wraith[/card] 14 [card]Wild Defiance[/card]
12 [card]Violent Outburst[/card] 12 [card]Pyroclasm[/card]
12 [card]Wild Nacatl[/card] 12 [card]Wear / Tear[/card]
9 [card]Galvanic Blast[/card] 11 [card]Boil[/card]
9 [card]Jungle Weaver[/card] 11 [card]Rest in Peace[/card]
9 [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card] 11 [card]Seal of Primordium[/card]
9 [card]Thoughtcast[/card] 11 [card]Zealous Persecution[/card]
9 [card]Welding Jar[/card] 10 [card]Carrion Call[/card]
8 [card]Faithless Looting[/card] 10 [card]Choke[/card]
8 [card]Ichorclaw Myr[/card] 10 [card]Damnation[/card]
8 [card]Thought Scour[/card] 10 [card]Firespout[/card]
7 [card]Peer Through Depths[/card] 10 [card]Lingering Souls[/card]
6 [card]Architects of Will[/card] 10 [card]Relic of Progenitus[/card]
6 [card]Terminate[/card] 10 [card]Skullcrack[/card]
5 [card]Boros Garrison[/card] 9 [card]Dryad Arbor[/card]
5 [card]Golgari Rot Farm[/card] 9 [card]Rule of Law[/card]
5 [card]Khalni Garden[/card] 9 [card]Thrun, the Last Troll[/card]
5 [card]Selesnya Sanctuary[/card] 8 [card]Celestial Purge[/card]
5 [card]Simian Spirit Guide[/card] 8 [card]Maelstrom Pulse[/card]
5 [card]Victim of Night[/card] 8 [card]Mirran Crusader[/card]
4 [card]Flame Slash[/card] 8 [card]Nyx-Fleece Ram[/card]
4 [card]Goblin Electromancer[/card] 8 [card]Sigarda, Host of Herons[/card]
4 [card]Grisly Salvage[/card] 8 [card]Thragtusk[/card]
4 [card]Pale Recluse[/card] 7 [card]Burrenton Forge-Tender[/card]
4 [card]Plague Stinger[/card] 7 [card]Deathmark[/card]
4 [card]Pyretic Ritual[/card] 7 [card]Drown in Sorrow[/card]
4 [card]Radiant Fountain[/card] 7 [card]Fracturing Gust[/card]
4 [card]Raise the Alarm[/card] 7 [card]Illness in the Ranks[/card]
4 [card]Repeal[/card] 7 [card]Searing Blaze[/card]
4 [card]Soul Warden[/card] 7 [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card]
4 [card]Soul’s Attendant[/card] 7 [card]Vendilion Clique[/card]
4 [card]Squadron Hawk[/card] 7 [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card]
3 [card]Farseek[/card] 6 [card]Aven Mindcensor[/card]
3 [card]Gurmag Angler[/card] 6 [card]Deflecting Palm[/card]
3 [card]Peek[/card] 6 [card]Gaddock Teeg[/card]
3 [card]Satyr Wayfinder[/card] 6 [card]Golgari Charm[/card]
3 [card]Seal of Primordium[/card] 6 [card]Ingot Chewer[/card]
3 [card]Spell Pierce[/card] 6 [card]Kataki, War’s Wage[/card]
2 [card]Gather the Townsfolk[/card] 6 [card]Shatterstorm[/card]
2 [card]Grapeshot[/card] 6 [card]Slaughter Pact[/card]
2 [card]Nature’s Claim[/card] 6 [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]
1 [card]Compulsive Research[/card] 6 [card]Sword of War and Peace[/card]
1 [card]Dispel[/card] 5 [card]Feed the Clan[/card]
1 [card]Duress[/card] 5 [card]Flames of the Blood Hand[/card]
1 [card]Flame Jab[/card] 5 [card]Gnaw to the Bone[/card]
1 [card]Giant Growth[/card] 5 [card]Keranos, God of Storms[/card]
1 [card]Golgari Brownscale[/card] 5 [card]Kitchen Finks[/card]
1 [card]Igneous Pouncer[/card] 5 [card]Ricochet Trap[/card]
1 [card]Kabira Crossroads[/card] 5 [card]Shriekmaw[/card]
1 [card]Raven’s Crime[/card] 5 [card]Sword of Light and Shadow[/card]
1 [card]Temur Battle Rage[/card] 5 [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]
1 [card]Twisted Abomination[/card] 4 [card]Abrupt Decay[/card]
1 [card]Vapor Snag[/card] 4 [card]Counterflu[/card]
4 [card]Dark Confidant[/card]
4 [card]Elspeth, Knight-Errant[/card]
4 [card]Grim Lavamancer[/card]
4 [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card]
4 [card]Memoricide[/card]
4 [card]Nihil Spellbomb[/card]
4 [card]Piracy Charm[/card]
4 [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card]
4 [card]Stain the Mind[/card]
4 [card]Surgical Extraction[/card]
4 [card]Tarmogoyf[/card]
4 [card]Tidebinder Mage[/card]
4 [card]Torpor Orb[/card]
4 [card]Whipflare[/card]
3 [card]Ajani, Mentor of Heroes[/card]
3 [card]All Is Dust[/card]
3 [card]Baneslayer Angel[/card]
3 [card]Damping Matri[/card]
3 [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card]
3 [card]Empty the Warrens[/card]
3 [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card]
3 [card]Gideon Jura[/card]
3 [card]Gifts Ungiven[/card]
3 [card]Gigadrowse[/card]
3 [card]Inferno Titan[/card]
3 [card]Lightning Bolt[/card]
3 [card]Pithing Needle[/card]
3 [card]Sowing Salt[/card]
3 [card]Sylvan Scrying[/card]
3 [card]Tormod’s Crypt[/card]
2 [card]Abzan Charm[/card]
2 [card]Back to Nature[/card]
2 [card]Bojuka Bog[/card]
2 [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card]
2 [card]Crackling Doom[/card]
2 [card]Creeping Tar Pit[/card]
2 [card]Crucible of Worlds[/card]
2 [card]Darkblast[/card]
2 [card]Dispatch[/card]
2 [card]Eidolon of Rhetoric[/card]
2 [card]Ghost Quarter[/card]
2 [card]Golgari Brownscale[/card]
2 [card]Hero of Bladehold[/card]
2 [card]Hornet Queen[/card]
2 [card]Hurkyl’s Recall[/card]
2 [card]Keranos, God of Storms[/card]
2 [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card]
2 [card]Kira, Great Glass-Spinner[/card]
2 [card]Living End[/card]
2 [card]Murderous Cut[/card]
2 [card]Olivia Voldaren[/card]
2 [card]Phyrexian Unlife[/card]
2 [card]Pyrite Spellbomb[/card]
2 [card]Raven’s Crime[/card]
2 [card]Ray of Revelation[/card]
2 [card]Remand[/card]
2 [card]Stubborn Denial[/card]
2 [card]Sundering Titan[/card]
2 [card]Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas[/card]
2 [card]Threads of Disloyalty[/card]
2 [card]Thundermaw Hellkite[/card]
2 [card]Unflinching Courage[/card]
2 [card]Unified Will[/card]
2 [card]Unravel the Aether[/card]
2 [card]Vengeful Pharaoh[/card]
2 [card]Vines of Vastwood[/card]
2 [card]Viridian Corrupter[/card]
1 [card]Annul[/card]
1 [card]Aura of Silence[/card]
1 [card]Blood Baron of Vizkopa[/card]
1 [card]Boseiju, Who Shelters All[/card]
1 [card]Brindle Boar[/card]
1 [card]Courser of Kruphi[/card]
1 [card]Cranial Extraction[/card]
1 [card]Defense Grid[/card]
1 [card]Deglamer[/card]
1 [card]Detention Sphere[/card]
1 [card]Disenchant[/card]
1 [card]Distortion Strike[/card]
1 [card]Dragon’s Claw[/card]
1 [card]Echoing Truth[/card]
1 [card]Elspeth, Sun’s Champion[/card]
1 [card]Ethersworn Canonist[/card]
1 [card]Faerie Macabre[/card]
1 [card]Flame Slash[/card]
1 [card]Galvanic Blast[/card]
1 [card]Ghostly Prison[/card]
1 [card]Go for the Throat[/card]
1 [card]Grave Titan[/card]
1 [card]Harmonize[/card]
1 [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card]
1 [card]Karn Liberated[/card]
1 [card]Krosan Grip[/card]
1 [card]Master of Etherium[/card]
1 [card]Mindslaver[/card]
1 [card]Orzhov Pontiff[/card]
1 [card]Primeval Titan[/card]
1 [card]Ratchet Bomb[/card]
1 [card]Read the Bones[/card]
1 [card]Reclamation Sage[/card]
1 [card]Ruric Thar, the Unbowed[/card]
1 [card]Siege Rhino[/card]
1 [card]Sunlance[/card]
1 [card]Surrak Dragonclaw[/card]
1 [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]
1 [card]Valorous Stance[/card]
1 [card]Vandalblast[/card]
1 [card]Vedalken Shackles[/card]
1 [card]Wall of Roots[/card]
1 [card]Zombie Infestation[/card]



Top 10 Mythics Top 10 Rares Top 10 Uncommons Top 10 Commons Top 10 Sideboard
[card]Tarmogoyf[/card]* [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card] [card]Lingering Souls[/card] [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] [card]Stony Silence[/card]
[card]Liliana of the Veil[/card] [card]Windswept Heath[/card] [card]Path to Exile[/card] [card]Lava Spike[/card] [card]Fulminator Mage[/card]
[card]Mox Opal[/card] [card]Siege Rhino[/card] [card]Inquisition of Kozilek[/card] [card]Rift Bolt[/card] [card]Spellskite[/card]
[card]Grove of the Burnwillows[/card]* [card]Thoughtseize[/card] [card]Boros Charm[/card] [card]Serum Visions[/card] [card]Nature’s Claim[/card]
[card]Dark Confidant[/card] [card]Abrupt Decay[/card] [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card] [card]Treetop Village*[/card] [card]Destructive Revelry[/card]
[card]Voice of Resurgence[/card] [card]Marsh Flats[/card] [card]Might of Old Krosa[/card] [card]Gitaxian Probe[/card] [card]Molten Rain[/card]
[card]Primeval Titan[/card] [card]Scalding Tarn[/card] [card]Skullcrack[/card] [card]Searing Blaze[/card] [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card]
[card]Aether Vial[/card]* [card]Noble Hierarch[/card] [card]Become Immense[/card] [card]Blighted Agent[/card] [card]Ancient Grudge[/card]
[card]Karn Liberated[/card] [card]Inkmoth Nexus[/card] [card]Tectonic Edge[/card] [card]Glistener Elf[/card] [card]Kor Firewalker[/card]
[card]Windbrisk Heights[/card]* [card]Wooded Foothills[/card] [card]Remand[/card] [card]Mutagenic Growth[/card] [card]Twisted Image[/card]
Top 10 Mythics (Printed as Mythic only) [card]Vines of Vastwood[/card]
[card]Liliana of the Veil[/card]
[card]Mox Opal[/card]
[card]Dark Confidant[/card]
[card]Voice of Resurgence[/card]
[card]Primeval Titan[/card]
[card]Karn Liberated[/card]
[card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card]
[card]Doran, the Siege Tower[/card]
[card]Master of Waves[/card]
[card]Geist of Saint Traft [/card]
[card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]
(each had 8 copies)

*Printed at lower rarity, but should be considered as appropriate for the purposes of this analysis. Thus I listed the true mythic rare counts below and added the next runner up common [card]Vines of Vastwood[/card].

Liliana of the Veil

Looking at the trends for the top tens of each category, there are several undervalued cards that are seen. From mythics, we have [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card], [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Doran, the Siege Tower[/card], and [card]Master of Waves[/card]. I especially like Voice and Master here, as we aren’t expected to see them in MM2 and Master is currently very cheap for a mythic at around $3 each.

[card]Inkmoth Nexus[/card] is undervalued at rare and is in the best position to increase in price, at least in the short term. Khans fetchlands [card]Windswept Heath[/card] and [card]Wooded Foothills[/card] are very close to their bottoms as well—since they are in Standard, they are poised to increase in price next year due to the Standard season cycle in addition to the Modern demand they are seeing.

[card]Lingering Souls[/card] is very cheap right now at $0.30. However, it does have several printings which is going to suppress the nonfoil price. Foils still look good to me right now if you can get them on the cheap. [card]Boros Charm[/card], [card]Skullcrack[/card], and [card]Become Immense[/card] non-foils could also be good targets. I believe that they also have casual demand to back up their tournament demand, so stocking up on these uncommons on the cheap could be a good play. In terms of foils, I like [card]Boros Charm[/card] the most as it has a ton of cube potential.

Looking at commons, I’m not sure if there is anything I want to pick up that I already mentioned on Tuesday. Each has a decent chance of being included in Modern Masters 2015 and foils of all the noted commons are all pretty pricey already.

Sideboards of the wider field tell a completely different story. [card]Stony Silence[/card] was the number-one sideboard card, and I really like foils and non-foils of this card. [card]Destructive Revelry[/card] still saw a ton of play, but other notables are [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card] and [card]Twisted Image[/card]. Picking up extra copies of these cards, in both foil and non-foil, could see decent returns if the metagame from this point out reflects the decks seen at the top tables of the pro tour.

Other Notables

[card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] – 83 copies is pretty huge, so I expect the Ooze to maintain value and then go up if not included in MM2.

[card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card] – Tons of copies of this guy, and I will be looking to pick them up when Theros rotates from Standard.

[card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] – Tasigur is the real deal in Modern, and with his Standard demand already cemented, he seems like he is going places. I’m going to keep a close eye on this card moving forward.

[card]Grim Lavamancer[/card] – Lavamancer is back in action, so watch for any copies floating around that you can trade for.

[card]Wild Defiance[/card] – Foils of this card already spiked, but non-foils at $2 or less seem appealing to me. Infect is a great deck in the new Modern format and I think players are going to want to try this card out in their decks.

[card]Maelstrom Pulse[/card] – If not included in MM2, I feel that Pulse has nowhere to go but up in price. Pick up your copies if you like playing one of the new Abzan decks in the format.

[card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card] – Though Wizards would be remiss to keep this Leyline out of MM2, if they do, I would expect a significant price bump.

[card]Combust[/card] – Though not talked about that much, this sideboard card showed up pretty significantly and I would expect it to rise from the current $0.20 that it sits at if it remains a popular sideboard choice.

[card]Obstinate Baloth[/card] – Another cheap sideboard card that is good in the format, the Baloth seems like a good pickup to me if you can get copies for $2 or less.



The people have spoken and I have provided. Hopefully this presents a better picture to you all of what types of cards the pros were slinging at Pro Tour Fate Reforged.

Weekend Magic: 2/6-2/8 (PT Fate Reforged Edition)

Hey, guys, I’ve got some sweet Modern action to cover this week based on the results that have come in from Pro Tour Fate Reforged. Let’s take a look at the standings, what cards were featured in some of the best-performing decks, and if there are any undervalued pieces left after all the spikes and card buy outs that happened in real time as players saw cards being used on screen.

Pro Tour Fate Reforged (Washington, DC)

Format – Modern


Top 8 By the Numbers

Mythic Rare (25) Rare (238) Uncommon (90)
8x [card]Tarmogoyf[/card] 16x [card]Scalding Tarn[/card] 12x [card]Lingering Souls[/card]
7x [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card] 12x [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card] 9x [card]Path to Exile[/card]
4x [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card] 12x [card]Siege Rhino[/card] 8x [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card]
4x [card]Primeval Titan[/card] 9x [card]Windswept Heath[/card] 8x [card]Deceiver Exarch[/card]
1x [card]Vesuva[/card] 9x [card]Thoughtseize[/card] 8x [card]Boros Charm[/card]
1x [card]Batterskull[/card] 8x [card]Wooded Foothills[/card] 7x [card]Remand[/card]
8x [card]Splinter Twin[/card] 6x [card]Skullcrack[/card]
8x [card]Goblin Guide[/card] 6x [card]Inquisition of Kozilek[/card]
8x [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card] 5x [card]Lightning Helix[/card]
7x [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card] 4x [card]Summer Bloom[/card]
7x [card]Noble Hierarch[/card] 4x [card]Spell Snare[/card]
7x [card]Marsh Flats[/card] 3x [card]Tolaria West[/card]
7x [card]Abrupt Decay[/card] 3x [card]Kitchen Finks[/card]
6x [card]Steam Vents[/card] 3x [card]Electrolyze[/card]
6x [card]Sacred Foundry[/card] 2x [card]Dismember[/card]
6x [card]Misty Rainforest[/card] 1x [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]
5x [card]Overgrown Tomb[/card] 1x [card]Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion[/card]
5x [card]Gavony Township[/card]
5x [card]Cryptic Command[/card]
5x [card]Bloodstained Mire[/card]
5x [card]Arid Mesa[/card]
4x [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card]
4x [card]Summoner’s Pact[/card]
4x [card]Sulfur Falls[/card]
4x [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card]
4x [card]Gemstone Mine[/card]
4x [card]Birds of Paradise[/card]
4x [card]Amulet of Vigor[/card]
3x [card]Wilt-Leaf Liege[/card]
3x [card]Twilight Mire[/card]
3x [card]Temple Garden[/card]
3x [card]Stomping Ground[/card]
3x [card]Razorverge Thicket[/card]
3x [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card]
3x [card]Hive Mind[/card]
3x [card]Grim Lavamancer[/card]
3x [card]Godless Shrine[/card]
2x [card]Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth[/card]
2x [card]Stirring Wildwood[/card]
2x [card]Pact of Negation[/card]
2x [card]Flooded Strand[/card]
2x [card]Cavern of Souls[/card]
2x [card]Blood Moon[/card]
2x [card]Azusa, Lost but Seeking[/card]
1x [card]Vault of the Archangel[/card]
1x [card]Tendo Ice Bridge[/card]
1x [card]Slayers’ Stronghold[/card]
1x [card]Slaughter Pact[/card]
1x [card]Mana Confluence[/card]
1x [card]Maelstrom Pulse[/card]
1x [card]Desolate Lighthouse[/card]
1x [card]Breeding Pool[/card]



Common (89) Sideboard (120)
16x [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] 7x [card]Destructive Revelry[/card]
12x [card]Serum Visions[/card] 6x [card]Stony Silence[/card]
8x [card]Rift Bolt[/card] 6x [card]Molten Rain[/card]
8x [card]Lava Spike[/card] 6x [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card]
7x [card]Searing Blaze[/card] 6x [card]Kor Firewalker[/card]
4x [card]Treetop Village[/card] 6x [card]Fulminator Mage[/card]
4x [card]Simic Growth Chamber[/card] 4x [card]Batterskull[/card]
4x [card]Shard Volley[/card] 4x [card]Ancient Grudge[/card]
4x [card]Pestermite[/card] 3x [card]Zealous Persecution[/card]
4x [card]Ancient Stirrings[/card] 3x [card]Smash to Smithereens[/card]
3x [card]Gruul Turf[/card] 3x [card]Path to Exile[/card]
2x [card]Sleight of Hand[/card] 3x [card]Dispel[/card]
2x [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card] 3x [card]Blood Moon[/card]
2x [card]Mana Leak[/card] 3x [card]Aven Mindcensor[/card]
1x [card]Simian Spirit Guide[/card] 3x [card]Anger of the Gods[/card]
1x [card]Selesnya Sanctuary[/card] 2x [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card]
1x [card]Radiant Fountain[/card] 2x [card]Thragtusk[/card]
1x [card]Peek[/card] 2x [card]Thoughtseize[/card]
1x [card]Khalni Garden[/card] 2x [card]Sword of War and Peace[/card]
1x [card]Golgari Rot Farm[/card] 2x [card]Spellskite[/card]
1x [card]Flame Slash[/card] 2x [card]Skullcrack[/card]
1x [card]Dispel[/card] 2x [card]Pyroclasm[/card]
1x [card]Boros Garrison[/card] 2x [card]Nature’s Claim[/card]
2x [card]Keranos, God of Storms[/card]
2x [card]Fracturing Gust[/card]
2x [card]Firespout[/card]
2x [card]Deflecting Palm[/card]
2x [card]Damnation[/card]
2x [card]Chalice of the Void[/card]
1x [card]Vendilion Clique[/card]
1x [card]Vedalken Shackles[/card]
1x [card]Timely Reinforcements[/card]
1x [card]Threads of Disloyalty[/card]
1x [card]Swan Song[/card]
1x [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card]
1x [card]Slaughter Pact[/card]
1x [card]Sigarda, Host of Herons[/card]
1x [card]Shatterstorm[/card]
1x [card]Searing Blaze[/card]
1x [card]Seal of Primordium[/card]
1x [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card]
1x [card]Rule of Law[/card]
1x [card]Relic of Progenitus[/card]
1x [card]Negate[/card]
1x [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card]
1x [card]Lightning Helix[/card]
1x [card]Jace, Architect of Thought[/card]
1x [card]Hornet Queen[/card]
1x [card]Ghost Quarter[/card]
1x [card]Flame Slash[/card]
1x [card]Feed the Clan[/card]
1x [card]Engineered Explosives[/card]
1x [card]Creeping Corrosion[/card]
1x [card]Choke[/card]
1x [card]Ajani, Mentor of Heroes[/card]


From the data, we see that:

  • The largest number of main deck cards from the Top 8 were:
    • Sixteen copies each – [card]Scalding Tarn[/card] and [card]Lightning Bolt[/card]
    • Twelve copies each – [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card], [card]Lingering Souls[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card], [card]Serum Visions[/card]
    • Nine copies each – [card]Windswept Heath[/card], [card]Thoughtseize[/card], [card]Path to Exile[/card]
    • Eight copies each – [card]Tarmogoyf[/card], [card]Wooded Foothills[/card], [card]Splinter Twin[/card], [card]Goblin Guide[/card], [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card], [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card], [card]Deceiver Exarch[/card], [card]Boros Charm[/card], [card]Rift Bolt[/card], [card]Lava Spike[/card]
    • Seven copies each – [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], [card]Noble Hierarch[/card], [card]Marsh Flats[/card], [card]Abrupt Decay[/card], [card]Remand[/card], [card]Searing Blaze[/card]
  • The largest number of sideboard cards from the Top 8 were:
    • Seven copies – [card]Destructive Revelry[/card]
    • Six copies each – [card]Stony Silence[/card], [card]Molten Rain[/card], [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card], [card]Kor Firewalker[/card], [card]Fulminator Mage[/card]
    • Four copies each – [card]Batterskull[/card], [card]Ancient Grudge[/card]

The question here becomes: where is the value? Plenty of cards are already expensive and others are poised for a price drop once Modern Masters 2 rolls around.

In my humble opinion, value lies in foils more than non-foils at this point. For example, foil commons or uncommons that aren’t completely overpriced should be good good pickups. Good examples here include [card]Lingering Souls[/card], [card]Path to Exile[/card], [card]Boros Charm[/card], and [card]Searing Blaze[/card] (the Player Rewards textless version is also a good pickup at $2.50). Other foils that are pricier but are still undervalued are [card]Eidolon of the Great Revel[/card], foil Khans fetchlands, and even foil [card]Abrupt Decay[/card]s, which still have a chance of growing since they will not be present in MM2.


Looking at the sideboards, we see that [card]Destructive Revelry[/card] was the most-played card but only saw action in Burn sideboards. Regardless, foils at $1.50 or less seem like a great pickup to me. [card]Destructive Revelry[/card] also sees Legacy play and will derive foil demand from that format as well. [card]Kor Firewalker[/card] is also a nice target, due to the popularity of Burn in the format. I like foils and non-foils if you can get them on the cheap.

Which cards didn’t spike from the weekend? Cards in this category include [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Splinter Twin[/card], [card]Goblin Guide[/card], and [card]Summoner’s Pact[/card]. Land cards also didn’t really see an uptick in price, even though lands such as [card]Stirring Wildwood[/card], [card]Razorverge Thicket[/card], [card]Gemstone Mine[/card], and [card]Gavony Township[/card] all saw play, their prices didn’t increase from the weekend. [card]Tolaria West[/card] has actually been trending downward in price recently from its highs of $7 retail at one point.

Potentially undervalued cards that saw some play in the Top 8, and probably more throughout the other decks at the Pro Tour, include [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card], [card]Skullcrack[/card], [card]Inquisition of Kozilek[/card], [card]Lightning Helix[/card], [card]Kitchen Finks[/card], [card]Dismember[/card], [card]Grim Lavamancer[/card], [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card], [card]Birds of Paradise[/card], and [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card]. All of these cards are great in the new format and should be watched for price movements and any potential future reprints.


What cards didn’t see play this weekend that were really hyped up? [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] has to be on the top of list, along with [card]Restoration Angel[/card], [card]Vengevine[/card], [card]Bloodghast[/card], [card]Grove of the Burnwillows[/card], [card]Chord of Calling[/card], [card]Golgari Grave-Troll[/card], and [card]Ghostway[/card] (which was bought out for some reason, I guess as a [card]Birthing Pod[/card] replacement maybe?). Not that you should liquidate any of these cards right away, but they aren’t increasing in price in the near future. Some of them could even see a significant downward trend in price if their play continues to be suppressed.

In Summary

That’s it for Pro Tour action. We’ll have to keep our ears to the ground to see if more innovations in Modern are discovered. Some decks that didn’t make the Top 8 but were featured in camera matches include Infect, Merfolk, Living End, Affinity, and B/W Tokens. Abzan was about one third of the field even though [card]Birthing Pod[/card] is banned, which speaks volumes. The plethora of decks featured at the Pro Tour shows that Modern is healthy and diverse format despite all the shakeups from bannings and unbannings. I look forward to see where Modern is going to go next.

Weekend Magic: 1/30-2/1

Last weekend brought us some Legacy action with Star City Games: Indianapolis, along with side events for Standard and Modern. Let’s see how the weekend turned out after the [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] banning.

Star City Games: Indianapolis – Legacy Open (Indianapolis, IN)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai Delver 1st Jim Davis U/W Control 17th Jacob Coffey
Storm 2nd Ben Wienburg Sneak and Show 18th Kyle Houtman
Elves 3rd Christopher Hall Storm 19th Benjamin Ball
Storm 4th Caleb Scherer Sneak and Show 20th Jonathan Anghelescu
Shardless Sultai 5th Rudy Briksza Death and Taxes 21st Jamie Scheffer
Mono-Red Burn 6th Cameron Ramsay Sultai Delver 22nd Peter Tragos
Elves 7th Matthew Hoey Death and Taxes 23rd Thomas Enevoldsen
Infect 8th Zachary Koch Maverick 24th Michael Belfatto
Maverick 9th Michael Antrim Esper Deathblade 25th David Elden
Shardless Sultai 10th Lewis Brook Storm 26th Jacob Baugh
Jeskai Delver 11th Marc Castillo Lands 27th Thomas McLeod
Death and Taxes 12th Gregory Schafer Death and Taxes 28th Colin Logan
Thopter Foundry 13th Chris Andersen Deathblade 29th Jessy Hefner
Maverick 14th Brian Epplin Maverick 30th Thomas Herzog
Sultai Delver 15th Noah Cohen Esper Delver 31st Steve Mann
Jeskai Delver 16th Brandon Penn Reanimator 32nd Joe Lossett

Star City Games entered the top 32 decklists into their database for this event, so there is a ton information available about the decks that did well during the previous weekend. 

Top 8 Highlights

  • [card]Dark Confidant[/card] is back in business! Three copies were found in the winning Sultai Delver decklist.
  • [card]Stifle[/card] also appears to be back on the charts with three copies in the winning decklist.
  • [card]Marsh Casualties[/card] is a card to watch—the winning decklist had two copies in the sideboard.
  • Two Elves and two Storm decks were in the Top 8. Combo seems to be making a resurgence, at least at Indianapolis.
  • Shardless Sultai made the Top 8. Cards to watch here include [card]Shardless Agent[/card], [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card], [card]Dig Through Time[/card], and [card]Ancestral Vision[/card].

Top 16 Highlights

  • Two copies of Maverick made the Top 16. Cards to watch in this deck include [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card], [card]Mother of Runes[/card], [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card], and [card]Green Sun’s Zenith[/card].
  • Two copies of Jeskai Delver made the Top 16. They have reverted to the [card]Stoneforge Mystic[/card] package in vogue before the banning of Treasure Cruise. One deck featured two copies of [card]Dig Through Time[/card]. [card]Meddling Mage[/card] is still a popular sideboard choice, and happens to be great against all the combo that seems to be popping up in Legacy.
  • An Esper Control deck called Thopter Foundry made the Top 16. Besides the featured [card]Thopter Foundry[/card] card that the deck was named after, other cards to watch include Dig Through Time, [card]Mental Note[/card], and [card]Thought Scour[/card]. A [card]Counterbalance[/card] package was also featured in the sideboard and should be noted.

Top 32 Highlights

  • A deck identified as U/W Control barely missed the Top 16. This deck featured three copies of the new [card]Monastery Mentor[/card], along with [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card], [card]Jace, the Mind Sculptor[/card], [card]Dig Through Time[/card], and many counterspells and cantrips in order to win the game. Could this be the direction that Monastery Mentor decks take in Legacy and possibly Vintange? It’s hard to tell at this point, but out of all the decks played during the weekend, this deck should be watched the closest for results over the next few months.
  • Three copies of Death and Taxes made the Top 32 in addition to a Top 16 appearance. Death and Taxes is still a strong choice even after the Treasure Cruise banning.
  • Two copies of Sneak and Show made the Top 32. Two copies of Dig Through Time were found in both decks.

All in all, it looks like new brews featuring Dig Through Time popped up during the weekend, so Khans is still making an impact on the metagame. Dig Through Time can still be used to great success in Sneak and Show and control decks in order to help find answers in the late game. Even Monastery Mentor is making a mark with a new type of deck showing up that featured it.

Star City Games: Indianapolis – Standard Premier IQ (Indianapolis, IN)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
W/U Heroic 1st Nathaniel Bass U/B Control 9th Donnie Wise
4-Color Soul 2nd Patrick Cowe Jeskai Aggro 10th Donivan Abraham
Temur Aggro 3rd Jacob Eckert Aabzan Aggro 11th Matt Guido
U/B Control 4th Marcus Fitzgerald G/R Aggro 12th Ross Abel
Sultai Control 5th Craig Bargo 4-Color Midrange 13th Ethan Powell
Abzan Aggro 6th Nicholas Hale Temur Ascendancy 14th James Wager
Abzan Midrange 7th Galen Whittaker G/R Devotion 15th William McMurtrie
U/B Control 8th Michael Hamilton Temur Ascendancy 16th Michael Medley

First place in Standard went to W/U Heroic, which didn’t include anything new from Fate Reforged. Four-Color Soul took second place, featuring four [card]Soul of Theros[/card] and three [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] main deck. Tasigur is the real deal, as we’ve also seen in Legacy, and his price should be watched very carefully over the next few weeks (especially foils).

Rounding out the Top 8, other cards to watch out for include:

  • [card]Ashcloud Phoenix[/card], [card]Flamewake Phoenix[/card], [card]Frost Walker[/card], [card]Rattleclaw Mystic[/card], [card]Savage Knuckleblade[/card], and [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card] in Temur Aggro.
    • I still think Crater’s Claws[/card] is going to continue to be good moving froward, especially going into the next Standard later in the year.
  • Crux of Fate[/card] out of U/B Control and Sultai Control.
  • [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card], [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card], and [card]Valorous Stance[/card] out of Abzan Aggro.

From the Top 16, cards to watch include:

  • [card]Heir of the Wilds[/card], [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card], and [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] out of G/R Aggro.
  • [card]Butcher of the Horde[/card] out of 4-Color Midrange.
  • [card]Temur Ascendancy[/card], [card]Genesis Hydra[/card], [card]Temur Sabertooth[/card], [card]Eidolon of Blossoms[/card], and [card]Chord of Calling[/card] out of Temur Ascendancy.
  • [card]Polukranos, World Eater[/card], [card]Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx[/card], and [card]Xenagos, the Reveler[/card] out of G/R Devotion.
    • Jason indicated that Nykthos is near an all time low price for such a powerful effect—get your copies now if you plan to play any of these devotion based strategies such as G/R Devotion or Temur Ascendancy combo.

Standard has been shaken up a bit, with some new players now battling it out with the old. U/W Heroic seems to be solid in a metagame that is still being established, but will it last?

Star City Games: Indianapolis – Modern Premier IQ (Indianapolis, IN)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Amulet Combo 1st Stephen Speck Elves 9th John Ostrem
G/W Hatebears 2nd Nick Hanna Dredgevine 10th Robert Beneteau
Jeskai control 3rd Jacob Kessler Bant Aggro 11th Chris Wynes
Mono Red Burn 4th Jacob Ross Dredge 12th jacob medley
Affinity 5th David Long Death and Taxes 13th Tom Judge
Naya Zoo 6th Christopher O’Bryant R/B Burn 14th David Gill
Affinity 7th Ian Losch Rack 15th Pete Casella
R/W Burn 8th Alan Eryman Merfolk 16th Paul Brooks

While Stephen Speck couldn’t win GP Omaha, he certainly won this event piloting Amulet Combo! It seems regardless of the variance of the deck’s hands that as long as you have experience piloting the deck, you can do very well with it (not having to play against Birthing Pod is quite nice though!). Cards to watch here include [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Azusa, Lost but Seeking[/card], [card]Amulet of Vigor[/card], [card]Hive Mind[/card], and [card]Summer Bloom[/card].

G/W Hatebears took second place. This deck seemed to be a popular choice amongst a potential field of Dredge decks which players were sure to test out. Cards to watch out for from this deck include [card]Leonin Arbiter[/card], [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card], [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card], [card]Wilt-Leaf Liege[/card], and [card]Thalia, Guardian of Thraben[/card].

Rounding out the Top 8, other cards to watch out for include:

  • [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card], [card]Young Pyromancer[/card], and [card]Shadow of Doubt[/card] out of Jeskai Control.
  • [card]Shard Volley[/card] out of Mono Red Burn—this seems to be a burn spell that is being included in Modern lists these days. Watch out for cheap foils especially.
  • [card]Ghostfire Blade[/card] in Affinity.
  • [card]Ghor-Clan Rampager[/card], [card]Wild Nacatl[/card], and [card]Become Immense[/card] out of Naya Zoo (which is a very weird Zoo list that I haven’t seen before). Sideboard cards to watch here include [card]Seeker of the Way[/card], [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card], [card]Destructive Revelry[/card] (is this Standard!?), [card]Dismember[/card], and [card]Gut Shot[/card].
  • [card]Monastery Swiftspear[/card] was included as a playset in the the Burn lists and the Zoo list—Swiftspear looks like it will be a strong performer in Modern. Even [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] appeared in some lists.

From the Top 16, cards to watch include:

  • Cards from Elves
    • [card]Arbor Elf[/card], [card]Devoted Druid[/card], [card]Heritage Druid[/card], [card]Nettle Sentinel[/card], and especially foil [card]Ezuri, Renegade Leader[/card] (which has received additional hype from Tiny Leaders discussions)
  • Cards from Dredgevine and Dredge
    • Dredgevine included a whole host of creatures that haven’t been seen before. Financially relevant cards include [card]Death’s Shadow[/card] , [card]Gravecrawler[/card] , [card]Skaab Ruinator[/card] , and [card]Vengevine[/card].
      • Ancient Ziggurat should also be noted, since it appeared as playset due the Dredgevine deck consisting of only 40 creatures and 20 lands. Foils of this land should be watched closely.
    • Dredge was a more spell-based list, but it also used Golgari Grave-Troll,  Gravecrawler, and Vengevine as the base along with [card]Grisly Salvage[/card] and [card]Faithless Looting[/card] to help play a quick Tasigur, the Golden Fang
  • [card]Knight of the Reliquary[/card], [card]Lotus Cobra[/card], [card]Sovereigns of Lost Alara[/card], [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card], and [card]Eldrazi Conscription[/card] out of the Bant Aggro list.
  • [card]Blade Splicer[/card], [card]Dryad Militant[/card], [card]Judge’s Familiar[/card], [card]Ghost Quarter[/card], and [card]Tectonic Edge[/card] out of Death and Taxes (which now exists in Modern, apparently!)
  • [card]Tombstalker[/card] and [card]Bump in the Night[/card] out of R/B Burn. [card]Rain of Gore[/card] is a notable sideboard card in this deck.
  • [card]Nyxathid[/card], [card]The Rack[/card], [card]Terminate[/card], and [card]Wrench Mind[/card] out of the Rack deck

There’s a lot to keep an eye on this week. Until next time!


Wow, the Top 16 was extremely diverse at this Modern Premier IQ! Plenty of innovation appeared due to the recent bannings and unbannings in the format, with the opportunity to see more when Pro Tour DC happens from 2/6-2/8. Old lists did well but the banning of Birthing Pod and Treasure Cruise has certainly been felt and has taken Modern in a new direction.


That’s it for this week. Next weekend is the Pro Tour, which will provide further information about what decks are now viable in Modern.


Weekend Magic: 1/23-1/25

With a new Standard set and recent Modern and Legacy bannings  and unbannings, this weekend is sure to bring attention to several cards that were previously flying under the radar. We’ll also see old decks coming back again. Let’s take a look at Star City Games: DC to see what the outcome of it all was. In addition, the Super Sunday Series Championship took place. This event can also provide more insight into the direction that Standard will be going since Fate Reforged has been released.

Star City Games: DC – Standard Open (Washington, DC, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Sultai Control 1st Gerard Fabiano G/B Constellation 9th Brian Braun-Duin
R/W Aggro 2nd Danny Goldstein Mardu Aggro 10th Benjamin Nikolich
Abzan Aggro 3rd Hunter Nance Temur Ascendancy 11th Mark Toepfner
W/U Heroic 4th Logan Mize Abzan Midrange 12th Jeremy Bowman
Sultai Ramp 5th Ali Aintrazi Jeskai Tokens 13th Tom Ross
Abzan Aggro 6th Andrew Boswell U/B Control 14th Ryan Phraner
Abzan Midrange 7th Dan Musser Abzan Midrange 15th Steve Rubin
Jeskai Aggro 8th Michael Walewski W/R Heroic 16th Zach Jesse

Gerard Fabiano took down the event piloting a Sultai Control list. The deck was focused around planeswalkers and featured two copies of the mighty [card]Ugin, the Spirit Dragon[/card] in the main deck. [card]Garruk, Apex Predator[/card] also made an appearance alongside [card]Kiora, the Crashing Wave[/card] and [card]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/card].

Also present were two [card]Tasigur, the Golden Fang[/card] out of his sideboard. This card has already spiked from its lows of $3 or $4 to upwards of $12 or $13. The current spike is due to the low supply of the card in the market—if you have any extra copies, I would sell now and then buy back in later once the price has lowered a bit. It seems that eternal formats could also be driving the demand of Tasigur and raising the price, since he was seen briefly in Modern. However, he is legendary and many players are opting to play only one or two copies of the card between their main decks and the sideboards.

Next up is Danny Goldstein’s R/W aggro deck, which featured [card]Monestary Mentor[/card], one [card]Soulfire Grand Master[/card], two [card]Outpost Siege[/card], two [card]Collateral Damage[/card], and two [card]Valorous Stance[/card]. [card]Hushwing Gryff[/card] was a two-of in the sideboard as well. Gryff is a notable card in the new format because it can help white decks out against the surge of Sultai that is sure to show up over the coming months due to Tasigur, in addition to the already existing [card]Siege Rhino[/card]s and Abzan cards.

Other notable appearances in the Top 8:

  • Tasigur also appeared as a two-of in the third place Abzan Aggro list.
  • [card]Frontier Siege[/card] appeared as a three-of in the Sultai Ramp list, and Ugin appeared as two-of in this list.
  • Abzan Aggro featured a full playset of [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card] and four [card]Valorous Stance[/card].
  • Abzan Midrange featured one Tasigur and one Ugin.
  • Jeskai Aggro featured two [card]Shaman of the Great Hunt[/card], two [card]Stormbreath Dragon[/card] (also one the sideboard), three [card]Abzan Advantage[/card] (also one in sideboard—foils could be a good target here), two [card]Valorous Stance[/card] (also two in the sideboard), and three [card]Wild Slash[/card].

Patrick Chapin made a Twitter comment about the number of Fate Reforged cards that saw play in the Top 8, and he wasn’t kidding! Usually, this many cards from a second set don’t see Standard play. However, Fate Reforged seems to have bucked this trend.

Notable Top 16 cards include:

  • A playset of Frontier Siege in BBD’s G/B Constellation deck.
  • Three [card]Brutal Hordechief[/card] and two Wild Slash in the 10th place Mardu Aggro list.
  • A [card]Temur Ascendancy[/card] combo deck, featuring four [card]Temur Sabertooth[/card] alongside Nykthos and [card]Temur Ascendancy[/card].
  • Three [card]Whisperwood Elemental[/card] in the 12th-place Abzan Midrange deck.
  • Three Monastery Mentor and two Soulfire Grand Master in Tom Ross’ Jeskai Tokens list, with a [card]Citadel Siege[/card] and a [card]Mastery of the Unseen[/card] out of the sideboard
  • One [card]Silumgar, the Drifting Death[/card] and Ugin, along with three [card]Crux of Fate[/card], out of the U/B Control list.
  • Three [card]Temur Battle Strength[/card] out of the W/R Heroic list, which is an interesting spin on the U/W Heroic that is usually seen.

Star City Games: DC – Modern Premier IQ (Washington, DC, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Auras 1st David Heilker Burn 9th Gary Nunes
Abzan Midrange 2nd Kevin Vanevery Mefolk 10th Cristo Yanez
Zoo 3rd Pat Cox Jeskai Flash 11th Timothy Taylor
Storm 4th Stan Smith Abzan 12th Oscar Sardinas
G/R Tron 5th Brad Carpenter Temur Twin 13th Allen Norman
Storm 6th Joshua Everly Scapeshift 14th Jonathan Goldman
Jund 7th Karl Delatorre Abzan 15th Chad Kastel
Affinity 8th Lance Hartbarger Zoo 16th Eli Loveman

Auras took down the Modern portion piloted by David Heilker. Looks like this deck is back on the radar now that Treasure Cruise and Dig Through Time are banned. Nothing new appeared in this deck—it was a classic Boggles list that was able to win due to the sheer speed of the clock it presents.

Tasigur made an appearance in the Abzan Midrange deck that took second place at the event. Also appearing in the deck were [card]Liliana of the Veil[/card], Stirring Wildwood, and [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card] along with two [card]Creeping Corrosion[/card] and four [card]Fulminator Mage[/card] out of the sideboard.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Zoo, two Storm decks, G/R Tron, Jund, and Affinity. Notables from these decks include Geist of Saint Traft, Pyromancer Ascension, Past in Flames, and Chandra, Pyromaster. Not much innovation from Fate Reforged, so it looks like Modern has gone back to the way it was post-Khans.

Rounding out the Top 8 were Burn, Merfolk, Jeskai Flash, two Abzan decks, Temur Twin, Scapeshift, and Zoo. Notables from these decks include Restoration Angel, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Wanderwine Hub, Seachrome Coast, Gifts Ungiven, Knight of the Reliquary, and Blood Moon.

Star City Games: DC – Legacy Premier IQ (Washington, DC, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Show and Tell 1st Daniel Cosiem Miracles 9th Gavin Schober
Lands 2nd David Long Jeskai Stoneblade 10th Kevin Jones
Lands 3rd TJ Martin Temur Delver 11th Daniel Signorini
Abzan Maverick 4th Doug Azzano G/B Midrange 12th David Richardson
Metalworker 5th James Wohlmacher Temur Delver 13th Zack Kanner
Dredge 6th Erik Copenhaver Esper Stoneblade 14th Shaheen Soorani
Temur Delver 7th Myles Housman Shardless Sultai 15th Harlan Firer
Grixis Control 8th Jeff Mcaleer Temur Delver 16th Cody Shoemaker

Show and Tell took down the Legacy portioned piloted by Daniel Cosiem. Dig Through Time managed to avoid the banhammer in Legacy, yet it wasn’t used in the winning Show and Tell list. Lands took second and third place—cards to watch from this deck include Mox Diamond, Gamble, and The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale. Wasteland could also see an uptick in demand since U/R Delver is no longer a deck based on the Top 16 we see here.

Other cards to watch from the Top 8 include Deathrite Shaman, Stoneforge Mystic, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Living Wish, Metalworker, City of Traitors, Grim Monolith, Golgari Grave-Troll, Lion’s Eye Diamond, Nimble Mongoose (which seems to be making a resurgence), Baleful Strix, and Dack Fayden. All of these cards were important pieces of their respective decks in the Top 8 results of the Legacy portion of the weekend.

From the Top 16, G/B Midrange is the rogue deck of the week. Cards to watch from this deck include Obstinate Baloth, Titania, Protector of Argoth, Choke, Green Sun’s Zenith, and Rolling Spoil.

Super Sunday Series Championship


Back to Standard. Luis Salvatto took down the Super Sunday Series Championship by piloting a R/W Midrange list very similar to the R/W Aggro deck that took second place at the SCG Open. Notables from Salvatto’s deck include Chandra, Pyromaster, Brimaz, King of Oreskos, Ashcloud Phoenix, Valorous Stance, and Stormbreath Dragon.

Second place went to Oscar Christensen playing R/G Monsters. Notables from this deck include Boon Satyr, Ashcloud Phoenix, Stormbreath Dragon, two Yasova Dragonclaw, and Crater’s Claws.

Rounding out the Top 8 were two Abzan midrange decks, Jeskai Ascendancy Combo, BG Constellation, Sidisi-Whip and Abzan Aggro. Notables here included three Tasigur and one Torrent Elemental out of Matt Costa’s Sidisi-Whip main deck, along with another Torrent Elemental and Crux of Fate out the sideboard.

Other notables from the Top 8 include Shamanic Revelation out the BG Constellation sideboard, two Monastery Siege out of the Jeskai Ascendancy Combo sideboard, and lots of copies of Nissa, Worldwaker and Drown in Sorrow across multiple sideboards.

Last Thoughts

Modern and Legacy seem to have reverted back to post-Khans, barring any future innovations from Fate Reforged, and Standard appears to have a ton of possibility for the future! There are plenty of cards to watch from Fate Reforged, but current themes suggest that we should watch Tasigur, Ugin, and Monastery Mentor the closest. These three cards seem to be the most powerful from Fate Reforged—so far!

Weekend Magic: 1/9-1/11

Let’s take a look at another weekend of Magic action. This weekend featured two constructed events, Grand Prix: Omaha and Star City Games: Philadelphia. The Grand Prix was Modern so we will be able to add more Modern data to our analysis of the format before the new banned and restricted announcements are revealed. The SCG Open featured Legacy as the main event, which is exciting because Legacy events are becoming rarer and rarer every day. Time to get down into the Magic.

Grand Prix: Omaha (NE, USA)


Pod took down the tournament piloted by Erik Peters. Despite the success of U/R Delver in Modern from the one and only Treasure Cruise, Pod still seems to be taking Modern by storm. LSV and others still tote it as one of the most popular decks in Modern, and the power of Birthing Pod can’t be denied even in a field full of fast, aggressive decks. Highlights from Peters’ deck include Voice of Resurgence and Siege Rhino (foils are a good target now). Siege Rhino has quickly made itself a mainstay of Modern, at least in the current format, and foils are good target both for Standard applications and the the predicted usability of the card in Modern moving forward.

Second place went to Amulet Combo, a deck that is notoriously hard to pilot but does great in a field full of fast, aggressive decks since it can kill your opponent quicker than an aggro deck if the proper sequence of plays are executed correctly. Such were the skills of Stephen Speck that he was able to place in the finals of a Grand Prix with such a deck. Cards to look out for in the deck include [card]Primeval Titan[/card], [card]Amulet of Vigor[/card], [card]Summer Bloom[/card], and [card]Hive Mind[/card]—all cards essential to the deck’s operation.

Rounding out the Top 8 were a diverse listing of decks which included R/G Tron, Merfolk, two U/R Delver lists, Four-Color Zoo, and something called R/G Breachscape. Let’s take a look more closely at Merfolk, Zoo, and Breachscape since the other lists are Modern mainstays that have been documented extensively in past articles.

  • Merfolk – Many pieces of Merfolk have already stabilized in price over time due to the success of this deck in Modern. This means that some have a high chance of being in Modern Masters 2, like Cursecatcher and Silvergill Adept. Others like Master of the Pearl Trident have already increased in price due to Merfolk also popping up from time to time in Legacy, further increasing demand for the core components. Even Cavern of Souls and Aether Vial keep going up over time, since they are casual favorites in addition to being key parts of the deck. Mutavault is probably the most undervalued card of the deck due to the recent M14 printing.
  • Four-Color Zoo – Cards to look out for here include [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card] (again!?), [card]Loxodon Smiter[/card], [card]Lightning Helix[/card], and [card]Path to Exile[/card].
  • Breachscape – Cards to keep an eye on in this deck are Chalice of the Void (which just experienced another buy out and spike in price), Obstinate Baloth, Anger of the Gods, Summoning Trap, and Through the Breach.

All in all, GP Omaha was very exciting for Modern as it showcased seven different archetypes that have done well since Khans of Tarkir was printed. However, as some pros were quick to point out, there were two common trends amongst the decks – you either played [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] or played [card]Chalice of the Void[/card] main deck or sideboard to deal with TC decks (unless you’re Zoo, obviously).

Star City Games: Philadelphia – Legacy (PA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Temur Delver 1st Daryl Ayers Elves 9th Bobby Colegrove
Storm 2nd Ross Merriam Sultai Control 10th Gerard Fabiano
Sneak And Show 3rd Peter Johnson Shardless Sultai 11th Joseph Herrera
Lands 4th David Long Dredge 12th Eric Copenhaver
Temur Delver 5th Ralph Betesh Shardless Sultai 13th Rudy Briksza
Grixis Control 6th Ed Demicco Jeskai Stoneblade 14th James Pogue
Omnitell 7th Nick Cummings Temur Delver 15th Kemper Pogue
Elves 8th Ross Prajzner Ad Nauseam 16th Nick Eldering

The Legacy Open this weekend featured some very interesting finishes. I see that Ross Merriam decided to ditch Elves this weekend in favor of Storm – what a chump, if he just would have played Elves he would have won! I mean, the guy that won was playing Kird Ape in his main deck! That hasn’t happened since like 1995. All joking aside, let’s take a look at the outliers here.

Besides [card]Kird Ape[/card] in Daryl Ayers’ winning list there wasn’t anything financially relevant in the Top 4. Storm is pretty straightforward, as is Sneak and Show. Lands also didn’t give us anything new.

Grixis Control again featured [card]Dack Fayden[/card], a trend that should be noted. Also, Omnitell featured a full playset of [card]Dig Through Time[/card] rather than just the usual one-of or two-of that is normally seen.

Two Shardless Sultai decks made the Top 16, along with Dredge and Sultai Control. Standouts from these decks include Shardless Agent, Ancestral Vision (especially if it is unbanned in Modern like some are predicting), Toxic Deluge, and.. Courser of Kruphix!? Yes, that’s right folks Courser has now moved into Legacy along with Dig Through Time and Treasure Cruise. Neat. Dredge again had Mana Confluence as a playset and Sultai Control showed how a bunch of one-of and two-of’s along side Counterbalance seems to work out nicely.

Star City Games: Philadelphia – Standard (PA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
Mardu Midrange 1st William Grogan Abzan Reanimator 9th Bradley Robinson
Jeskai Aggro 2nd Noah Walker Abzan Midrange 10th Jon Goss
Abzan Aggro 3rd Kellen Pastoore Abzan Midrange 11th Andrew Boswell
Abzan Midrange 4th Spencer Assiff R/W Aggro 12th Lonny Warner
W/R Aggro 5th Robert Sabol Jeskai Heroic 13th Chase Petersen
Abzan Reanimator 6th Randy Ball G/R Aggro 14th Richard Anderson
W/U Heroic 7th Joe Lossett R/W Aggro 15th Ben Schoenbrun
Abzan Aggro 8th Phil Pratt Abzan Midrange 16th Joshua Halmagyi

Not a whole lot of news from this front, with the approach of Fate Reforged and all. Here are some notable cards to keep in mind moving forward:

  • [card]Butcher of the Horde[/card] – Pretty cheap at $1.50 or less, and a lot of upside going into the new format with the new tool Monastery Mentor.
  • [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card] – Solid removal and still around $1, definitely room to move up.
  • [card]Hushwing Gryff[/card] – Seen in many white sideboards and only around $2.50. Looks undervalued to me.
  • [card]Eidolon of Countless Battles[/card] – Seems like a good target if it continues to see play in W/R Aggro decks that have been placing well lately. Definitely a card to watch.
  • [card]See the Unwritten[/card] – Showed up in Abzan Reanimator and is a cheap mythic with a lot of upside later this year.

Star City Games: Philadelphia – Modern (PA, USA)


Deck Finish Player Deck Finish Player
R/G Tron 1st Thomas Riker Temur Control 9th Luis Alfonso
Abzan Midrange 2nd Erik Smith 4-Color Zoo 10th Jessy Hefner
Temur Delver 3rd Cody Shoemaker Melira Pod 11th Anthony Lebron
Jeskai Control 4th Robet Seder Ascendancy Combo 12th Jarvis Yu
Affinity 5th Joe Fasano Affinity 13th Thomas Conmy
Scapeshift 6th Andrew Vorel Abzan Pod 14th Robert Pompa
Scapeshift 7th Michael Mapson Abzan Pod 15th Vincent Pau
Abzan Pod 8th Yi Min Wang U/R Delver 16th Charles Hagaman

Here’s some more Modern action for you courtesy Star City Games. R/G Tron took down the event with Abzan Midrange coming in second. The rest of the Top 8 included a decent mixing of decks. Notables include:

  • [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] in Abzan Midrange. Copies are still floating around $5-$6, which is cheap for this important Modern role player.
  • [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] in Jeskai Control. A full playset was played in this build, showcasing the power of the card.
  • [card]Courser of Kruphix[/card] out of Michael Mapson’s Scapeshift list. The time to target Coursers will be upon Theros block rotation.

Out of the Top 16, other notables include:

  • [card]Keranos, God of Storms[/card] out of Temur Control
  • [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] and [card]Arc Trail[/card] out of 4-Color Zoo
  • [card]Fatestitcher[/card], [card]Jeskai Ascendancy[/card], and[card] Dig Through Time[/card] out of the Jeskai Ascendancy combo deck

That’s it for this week! Fate Reforged is coming out shortly so more coverage will be arriving next week based on those results. Until next time.


Weekend Magic: 1/2-1/4 (with Discussion of Possibilities from Fate Reforged!)

Happy New Year! Welcome back to Weekend Magic coverage here at Brainstorm Brewery. Plenty of Magic action happened last weekend with Star City Games Columbus, Grand Prix Denver, and Grand Prix Manila. Let’s get right down to business and check out the results.

Grand Prix Denver (CO, USA)

Format – Standard


Until Fate Reforged becomes legal in Standard, we only have the same type of decks to look at until the new set makes its impact. The issue now is whether the Standard decks that exist currently will maintain their dominance, or will new archetypes emerge that make use of recently spoiled cards from the new set?

The first-place deck at GP Colorado, U/B Control piloted by Andrew Brown, certainly has one card that could be added to it: [card]Silumgar, the Drifting Death[/card].


This card has many players excited about its Standard applications since it is great against token strategies in addition to having Hexproof, making it harder to kill than most things. I don’t think you can go wrong picking these up for $0.25 or less. Dragons are a very popular creature type amongst the Magic crowd and the dragons from Fate Reforged will also follow this trend, ensuring that you could still out them later if it doesn’t pan out initially.

Cards of note from Brown’s deck included [card]Pearl Lake Ancient[/card], [card]Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver[/card] (four across the maindeck and sideboard), [card]Perilous Vault[/card], and [card]Dig Through Time[/card]. All of these cards should be watched moving into the future.

Second place was taken by Matt Sperling piloting Abzan Aggro, a deck that we’re intimately familiar with at this point. Again, however, Fate Reforged has given it another possible tool in [card]Warden of the First Tree[/card].

Warden of the First Tree

An Abzan [card]Figure of Destiny[/card]? Close, but it is slightly different in several ways, and any one of those differences could exclude it from Standard play. There are so many other options that already exist for the Abzan decks, but Warden’s abilities are certainly powerful and it only costs one mana to cast—this is good for instances where you need to play a Temple on turn one or two. I’ll be keeping an eye on this guy moving forward.

Current notables from Sperling’s build include [card]Fleecemane Lion[/card], [card]Rakshasa Deathdealer[/card], [card]Siege Rhino[/card], and [card]Anafenza, the Foremost[/card].

Grand Prix Manila (Manila, PH)

Format – Standard


First place here went to Joseph Sclavzero playing Mardu Midrange. Notables from his deck include [card]Butcher of the Horde[/card], [card]Crackling Doom[/card], and [card]Chained to the Rocks[/card]. [card]Anger of the Gods[/card] out of the sideboard is also notable.

Which cards spoiled so far might be well-positioned in a deck like this? None spoiled so far really stand out to me except [card]Monastery Mentor[/card], which would primarily shine in Jeskai token strategies but could also have a place in Mardu decks.

Monastery Mentor

Mentor could take the place of [card]Seeker of the Way[/card] in the Mardu and Jeskai decks, since lifelink can be granted to [card]Butcher of the Horde[/card] and given by [card]Sorin, Solemn Visitor[/card] currently as well. There is no doubt that this card is much strong than [card]Seeker of the Way[/card], and given enough time, like [card]Goblin Rabblemaster[/card, can eventually take over a game with all of the prowess that will be going towards the tokens and Mentor.

But does strength outclass efficiency? Three mana versus two mana is a huge difference. Whether the card explodes in price or drops significantly, [card]Monastery Mentor[/card] is definitely a card to watch out for in the new Standard.

Second place went to Abzan Midrange, which also took three other spots in the Top 8 and four other spots in the Top 16. The story of the tournament was told by the strength of Abzan Midrange, but Makihito Mihara’s third-place Devotion to Constellation build contained four [card]See the Unwritten[/card], a card that could break out in Standard if given the right tools.

SCG Columbus – Standard (OH, USA)


Finish Deck Player Finish Deck Player
1st W/U Heroic Joe Lossett 9th U/W Heroic Adam Johnson
2nd R/W Aggro Matt Anderson 10th Abzan Aggro Dylan Jones
3rd Jeskai Tokens Bruce Edelman 11th U/B Control Jerry Gillman
4th U/W Control Jim Davis 12th R/G Monsters Christopher O’Bryant
5th Abzan Reanimator Rudy Briksza 13th 4-color Soul Adrian Throop
6th Four-Color Delve Chris Andersen 14th Abzan Reanimator Andrew Sparger
7th W/U Heroic Steve Mann 15th Jeskai Tokens Jadine Klomparens
8th W/U Heroic Logan Mize 16th W/U Heroic Kyle Rocco

If the story of Manila was Abzan Midrange, then the story of Columbus was U/W Heroic. The deck put five people into the Top 16 and took down the event.

Two interesting decks were Four-Color Delve and Four-Color Soul. [card]Soul of Theros[/card] appeared as a playset in both decks, so I will be watching this card very closely over the coming weeks for any sign of a price increase.

No other important trends were seen in Columbus that we haven’t seen already. Let’s get to Fate Reforged already for a shakeup!

SCG Premier IQ – Modern (OH, USA)


Finish Deck Player Finish Deck Player
1st U/R Delver David Nolan 9th Abzan Midrange Ben Weiner
2nd Amulet Combo Stephen Speck 10th Blue Moon Alex Zurawski
3rd Necrotic Ooze Combo Garett Young 11th Storm Caleb Scherer
4th Jeskai Delver Ryan Forsberg 12th Jeskai Burn Jonathon Custer
5th Affinity Jaime Jarvis 13th U/R Delver Carter Newman
6th Tribal Zoo Matt Ayers 14th Abzan Midrange Michael Farrell
7th U/R Delver Elliot Mork 15th Abzan Midrange James Grendell
8th Storm Stu Somers 16th Affinity Corey Filburn

Modern, on the other hand, is as diverse as ever. A new deck to appear in a Top 8 spot is [card]Necrotic Ooze[/card] Combo piloted by Garett Young. There is a whole list of cards that should be watched for from this deck:

  • [card]Necrotic Ooze[/card]
  • [card]Borborygmos Enraged[/card]
  • [card]Goryo’s Vengeance[/card]
  • [card]Soul Spike[/card]
  • [card]Zombie Infestation[/card]
  • [card]Lightning Axe[/card] – FOIL
  • [card]Grisly Salvage[/card] – FOIL

Even four [card]Pack Rat[/card]s were included in the sideboard. This deck seems like a great metagame choice to combat the [card]Treasure Cruise[/card] decks that have been showing up these days in Modern.

Other notables from the results are the appearance of [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] in the Zoo and Jeskai Delver builds, [card]Primeval Titan[/card] and other pieces of the Amulet Combo deck ([card]Amulet of Vigor[/card], [card]Summer Bloom[/card], and [card]Hive Mind[/card]), and [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] out of the Abzan strategies. Storm also got two spots in the Top 16, which speaks to its power in the new Treasure Cruise format.

SCG Premier IQ – Legacy (OH, USA)


Finish Deck Player Finish Deck Player
1st Ascendency Combo Robert Graves 9th Storm Jacob Redfern
2nd Bant Deathblade Marcus Perez 10th Mono-Black Pox Kurtis Frazier
3rd Omni-Tell Eric English 11th Lands Hayden Brass
4th Death and Taxes Jeff Dickens 12th U/R Delver Nathaniel Snyder
5th Grixis Control Kevin Jones 13th Jeskai Stoneblade Nick Cowden
6th Jeskai Delver Lauren Nolen 14th Sultai Delver John Wiley
7th Jeskai Stoneblade Joe Bernal 15th Jeskai Stoneblade William Wingler
8th Storm Benjamin Ball 16th Shallow Grave Reanimator Robert Cremeans

Ascendency Combo took down the Legacy portion piloted by Robert Graves. As the new kid on the Legacy block, the Ascendency Combo deck is the real deal that isn’t easily going away. It turned [card]Fatestitcher[/card] into a $4 uncommon and Jeskai Ascendancy itself will eventually go up in price (barring a banning) due to its sheer power in this deck.

Bant Deathblade is something that hasn’t been seen in some time. [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] made an appearance in this build, the only card of note. [card]Omniscience[/card] is another card to watch due to third place finish of Omni-Tell.

Grixis Control is now a recurring deck that is putting up results in Top 16s these days. [card]Dack Fayden[/card] appears as a two-of in this deck and is certainly a card to watch moving forward.

Mono-Black Pox made an appearance in the Top 16, along with Shallow Grave Reanimator. Cards to watch from these decks include [card]Cursed Scroll[/card], [card]Chains of Mephistopheles[/card] (which is already a very pricy card), [card]Sinkhole[/card], [card]Nether Void[/card], [card]Mishra’s Factory[/card], and finally, [card]Shallow Grave[/card].

That’s it this week. Soon we’ll have Fate Reforged to shake up Standard, and maybe Modern and Legacy, too. Until then…