Instant Analysis – SCG Orlando Legacy Open 2011

Instant Analysis SCG Orlando 2011
Another weekend has come and gone, but this was no ordinary weekend in Legacy. This was the first week that major tournaments around the world would have New Phyrexia legal, and along with it the most hyped card for Legacy in ages, Mental Misstep. While the massive Bazaar of Moxen tournament was going on halfway around the world in France, Americans had the opportunity to gather in sunny Orlando (Florida, USA) to play their weapon of choice in a new era of Legacy. The Mental Misstep Era.

Gerry Thompson (UW Landstill) scooped to Chris VanMeter (Tempo UBG) in the finals (lame!), and the decklists for the Top 16 in Orlando can be found here. Merfolk was all over the place, and I’d guess was the most played deck. The top finishing Merfolk player was Nick Spagnolo who clocked in at sixth place playing a 12-lord version with 2 Umezawa’s Jitte main and no Kira, Great Glass-Spinner. A whopping five other Merfolk players finished just outside the Top 8 in ninth through sixteenth place, and they were all playing 3-4 Missteps and they varied on what can be considered the flex slots with stuff like Merfolk Sovereign, Standstill, Kira, and more counters. The Orlando metagame seemed to be composed of Team America, Bant, Show and Tell, Zoo, BGW Junk, and Painter being played, along with another two dozen other lesser played decks in smaller numbers. The Top 16 included the aforementioned Merfolk, Team America, Landstill, Intuition Painter, Metalworker, and another Death and Taxes sighting! There were 146 players in this event and Legacy is still as diverse as ever, but things will start to get interesting as the metagame shifts around the perceived and real value of Misstep.

Instant Analysis – Bazaar of Moxen Legacy 2011

Instant Analysis Bazaar of Moxen Legacy 2011
Have you ever won a piece of Power 9 playing in a Magic tournament? It’s a great feeling, and a nice little financial reward for beating let’s say 20 to 60 other players. Now what if you could beat 600 other players, and you won an entire set of Beta Power 9 for your triumph? If you could, you’d most likely be playing in the annual Bazaar of Moxen (BoM) tournaments, where the turnout is big and the prizes are bigger!

Last year’s BoM Legacy event had over 500 people, and many were wondering if the attendance would rise as Legacy has become more popular, or if it would fall because of rising travel prices and a depressed economy in most quarters of the globe. This year’s installment of the grand BoM took place last weekend (May 13-15) and we’re happy to report it was a smashing success. The Legacy trial for byes and cash on Friday May 13 attracted 144 people, and ended up being won by Show and Tell after 8 rounds of straight Swiss (no playoff; decklists not available). This year over 500 people were preregistered for the Legacy main event on Saturday May 14, and a whopping 633 people ended up battling it out for an impressive prize pool detailed below. Nine rounds of Swiss competition followed by a Top 16 playoff meant players were in for a long and grueling day of battle, and after 2am in the morning Matthias Frauenschläger (UBG Landstill) defeated Oliver Salten (Reanimator) in the finals. Congratulations are in order to Matthias for his victory and to the organizers for hosting a fantastic tournament. Join us as we retrace the tournament highs and lows and break down the largest privately held (non-Wizards of the Coast sponsored) Legacy tournament ever held anywhere!

Bazaar of Moxen 2011 Vintage Decklists, Reports, and Video Roundup

Bazaar of Moxen 2011 Vintage Decklists, Reports, and Video Roundup

This past weekend marked the fifth annual Bazaar of Moxen tournament in Annecy, France. An insane 383 players came out to battle in the Vintage main event for some incredible prizes, and Omar Rohner of Spain ended up conquering the field with TurboTezz, overcoming Italian powerhouse Lorenzo Fedeli (playing a different build of TurboTezz) in three action packed games!

Martin Lindstrom of Sweden won the Golden Mox Jet, awarded to the player with the highest finish in both the Vintage and Legacy main events. Cesar Fernandez of UAL is the hardest working man in coverage, and is responsible for typing up these decklists. We have slightly reformatted them and along with the Top 8 decklists we have brought you some BoM Vintage tournament reports from around the web, as well as some bonus decklists from other competitors who finished outside the Top 8. Check it all out after the jump!

Bazaar of Moxen 2011 Legacy Decklists, Reports, and Video Roundup

Bazaar of Moxen 2011 Legacy Decklists, Reports, and Video Roundup

The 2011 Bazaar of Moxen has just concluded, and we are happy to report to you that it was the largest privately held Legacy tournament to have ever taken place to date, with an astonishing 633 players playing Legacy in beautiful Annecy, France. With the help of the tournament organizers and the WatchDaMatch coverage team we are proud to bring you the Top 16 decklists from the Legacy main event!

Mr. H from WatchDaMatch was kind enough to type these up, and we have reformatted them for clarity for your viewing pleasure. WatchDaMatch is a relatively new coverage team that will be covering high caliber tournament Magic, Street Fighter 4 (SSF4), StarCraft 2 (SC2), and more. They are still working on teching out their official website, but for now you can check out their popular YouTube channel or you can catch them on Facebook here.

In addition to the Top 16 decklists we’ve also gathered up the intial batch of tournament reports by players around the Web, as well as some nice Deck Tech videos from BoM courtesy of WatchDaMatch. Check out all the awesome goodies after the jump!

WotC Suspends Guillaume Matignon & Guillaume Wafo-Tapo for New Phyrexia Leak

WotC Suspends Guillaume Matignon & Guillaume Wafo-Tapo for New Phyrexia Leak

The investigation was quick, and the response was swift. Wizards of the Coast has already sniffed out the people responsible for the New Phyrexia leaks, and has dropped the banhammer. 2010 Player of the Year runner-up and Level 8 Pro player Guillaume Matignon was given a 3 year ban by the DCI, and Level 8 Pro player Guillaume Wafo-Tapo, Martial Moreau, and David Gauthier were each handed 18 month suspensions. Wizards’ explanation and all the juicy details can be found after the jump!

New Phyrexia in Legacy, Vintage, and Type 4

New Phyrexia in Legacy, Vintage, and Type 4

Whenever a new set is released a handful of writers do a set review, and we’re throwing our hat into the ring now too. We’re not going to review every card in the set here, because that would be a waste of everyone’s time. What we will do is touch on the things that we think are remotely playable in the Eternal formats, and try to figure out a home for these cards in either new or existing decks. This will be a new feature here at Eternal Central, so buckle up your seat belts and join us for the ride as we review New Phyrexia in Legacy, Vintage, and Type 4 (bonus)!

A Real Look at Legacy Deck Costs 2011Q2

A Real Look at Legacy Deck Costs 2011Q2

Are you looking to get into Legacy, or are you looking to build up your Legacy collection or expand it a bit? If you’re just jumping in or seeking those last few staples for the decks you might want to play, you’ll no doubt find that prices are rapidly rising.

There has been an influx of new Legacy players across the globe as places like SCG and Wizards of the Coast and other large European tournament organizers have started really supporting Legacy by organizing what have turned into regular or semi-regular huge tournaments with attractive prizes. This has driven up demand, and along with it prices across the board for most things that rotated out of old Standard and Extended formats and have become staples of the surging Legacy landscape. Among the gnashing of teeth and speculation of the future of Legacy, a lot of people have been wondering, debating, and generally astonished at what it costs now to build a Legacy deck. So join Eternal Central as we dive in to analyzing the real costs of building a Legacy deck in 2011Q2.

Xtreme Games Vintage 02-20-2011 Results, Lists, and Pics

Xtreme Games 02-21-2011 Results, Lists, and Pics

Thanks to Eric and Shannon at Xtreme Games in Lindenhurst (IL, USA) for hosting another sweet monthly Vintage event. Unfortunately the weather in the Midwest was a drag and only 14 players came out to battle for the guaranteed Unlimited Mox Pearl for first place, and it seemed like all 14 had a good time. There were some fresh faces and some of the old guard in attendance. The farthest traveler that I know of (Evan Caufmann) came down from Michigan, so props to him!

After 4 rounds of Swiss there was a cut to Top 4, and the standings looked like this:
1 Ben Carp (playing MUD with 13 spheres)
2 Hans Knapp (playing Dredge with Crop Rotation)
3 Ryan Forsberg (playing Cobra Gush)
4 Jeff Levine (playing MUD with Sculpting Steel)

Instant Analysis – SCG Indianapolis Legacy Open 2011


Another frigid weekend in the Midwest, another awesome SCG Open. This time the traveling road show made its way to Indianapolis, Indiana. With Snowpocalypse 2011 only a few days prior, weather conditions were tricky but 266 competitors slogged their way to Indy for some rabblerousing and gamesmanship.

After nine rounds of Swiss and three more rounds of single elimination, SCG regular Ben Wienburg stood triumphantly with his UGWR CounterTop deck, modeled after Gerry Thompson’s build from a few weeks ago, but featuring Grim Lavamancer and a small Trinket Mage package. Besides Ben’s deck there were plenty of other cool new decks making their breakout appearance, as well as some old standbys like Goblins and Merfolk. Check out the technology after the jump!

Instant Analysis – SCG Kansas City & San Jose Legacy Opens

In the wake of the December 20 2010 announcement by the DCI banning Survival of the Fittest, the metagame clock in Legacy was set to be turned back in time about six months before the breakout performance of Caleb Durward’s Vengevine Survival at Grand Prix Columbus in June. While there were other Survival variants and Vengevine decks floating around and performing admirably over the past few years, no Survival deck had quite captivated players’ attention like this since RecSur circa 1998. From the Blue-Green Madness variant with Wild Mongrels that Caleb piloted a number of other intriguing variants spawned over the next five plus months, including WG Vengevine Survival that Jessie Butler won with at SCG Nashville, Rion Marmulstein’s Necrotic Ooze laced BUG Vengevine Survival deck from the same event (SCG Nashville), the Hatfield’s mono-Green Lion’s Eye Diamond-fueled turbo Vengevine Survival* from SCG Baltimore, Nick Spagnolo’s Trinket Mage infused UG Survival Vengevine at SCG Charlotte, and Gerry Thompson’s BWG Fauna Shaman-Necrotic Ooze-Vengevine-Survival mashup from SCG Boston, a polished variant of many others that had come before it. The rapid mutation and proliferation of Survival as a percentage of the metagame and repeated success led to the DCI wielding the axe, probably prematurely, late in 2010.

With the fallen beast slain by the DCI and Survival’s tombstone written, what decks and strategies would players turn to in order to trump a metagame rewound about half a year? In this week’s Instant Analysis follow along as we review what players busted out for the first two major post-Survival metagame tournaments of the New Year, at SCG KC and SCG San Jose. That’s right, two mini-articles for the price of none!

Tomoharu Saito Suspended 18 Months by DCI

Tomoharu Saito Suspended 18 Months by DCI
As we brought you the news of Tomoharu Saito’s disqualification for Stalling at Grand Prix Florence 2010 earlier this week, we also bring you the news that Tomoharu Saito has been suspended by the DCI for 18 months. After what appears to be an extremely quick investigation and decision on the DCI’s part the following appeared sometime late Tuesday night on the DCI’s Suspended Memberships page:
Tomoharu Saito Banned for 18 Months

Tomoharu Saito has been banned from sanctioned play as of 11-30-2010 through 05-30-2012. Check out our full analysis after the jump!

Saito Busted at GP Florence and What It Means

Saito Busted at GP Florence at What it Means
Pro Tour regular and Japanese Magic player extraordinaire Tomoharu Saito has been disqualified without prize from Grand Prix Florence 2010 this weekend for Cheating (Stalling). According to GP Coverage writer David Sutcliffe we have this gem from Saturday November 27:

We are never pleased to have to pass on bad news, so we are sad that we have to announce that Japan’s Tomoharu Saitou has been disqualified without prize from Grand Prix Florence following his sixth round match.

Head Judge, Level-4 Nick Sephton, explained why the disqualification occurred:
“We disqualified this player for Stalling, after it was observed that his play speed seemed to change based on his observation of the clock. It was observed by a high-level judge that twice in the round he appeared to change his play speed based on considerations that were outside the game. Consulting among the senior judges we decided that, on the basis of what we had observed, we had no choice but to disqualify the player.”

Nick [the Head Judge] continued with advice for players wanting to avoid falling foul of this rule themselves:
“Players should be able to play at a reasonable pace throughout a round. Judges recognize that a player’s speed of play can change during a game – Magic is a complicated game and produces difficult situations for players – but it’s important that players are still able to play at a speed that allows games to be completed. It’s a valid play skill to be able to make difficult decisions quickly.”

So what does this all mean? Well for one it means that the legendary Saito may be looking at a suspension and may see his pending Magic Hall of Fame induction take a hit. We break it all down after the jump!

In the Lab – Brainstorming Legacy Affinity

In the Lab - Brainstorming Legacy Affinity

Since the printing of Mirrodin and Darksteel enterprising mages have been brainstorming the best ways to break the Affinity mechanic. Effects that multiply anything (see: Berserk, Fork, the Storm mechanic) have traditionally been very powerful, and the DCI has treaded very carefully with those effects. The Affinity strategy proved sound enough to thoroughly dominate Standard and get all of the good cards banned in Extended, but hasn’t had the kind of strength or staying power in Legacy to keep it in Tier 1 or Tier 2 status.

The recent printings of more powerful and useful artifacts in Shards of Alara, M11, and Scars of Mirrodin have given the Affinity archetype even more toys, and with the remaining portion of the new Mirrodin block on the horizon there are potentially even more goodies that can be added to the pool of playable options. So let’s jump in and take a long hard look at most of the relevant cards to Affinity and Legacy as it stands in 20104Q, in our latest In the Lab article. (check it out after the jump!)