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  • Tuning NO RUG Part Two – Mulligans and Sideboarding

    Hey there, we’re back again this week with another look at Tuning NO RUG! In last week’s article I elaborated on the thought process that went into my recent version of NO RUG. This time we’re going to look at mulligan decisions and sideboarding plans with the deck.

    I originally planned to include an in-depth analysis of an entire match against Bant Aggro, but it would be better to devote a separate article to that so we can look at some of the more complex decisions that go into match play with the deck, so be on the lookout for that next week! For this week join us as we jump into mulliganing and sideboarding with NO RUG!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Three Lessons From Bobby Fischer

    Bobby Fischer is arguably the greatest Chess player of all time. This fact is all the more astounding because he was an American who rose to the pinnacle of a sport dominated by non-Americans (think soccer, or “football”). His method of play, his studious preparation, and even his descent into madness contain valuable lessons for the young or mature Magic player.
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  • Instant Analysis – SCG Boston & Spanish Legacy Nationals

    This article is meant to be a short and straight analysis of the current state of the Legacy format according to the last 2 big tournaments: Star City Games Open Series 2011 – Boston (268 players) + Spanish Legacy Nationals – Alcoy (318 players). I’m not going to judge wether Legacy is a healthy format or not. I’m leaving that to you and to the community. Right now I’m just going to focus on the numbers obtained by the most played decks in these two tournaments.

    [poll id=”8″]

    Discover what’s hidden behind the deck numbers right after the break!

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  • Tuning NO RUG: What Would Kibler Do?

    Hi there, y’all! I’m pretty sure you don’t know me, so I should probably introduce myself first. My name’s Jonathan Alexander, but call me Jona (pronounced like Yona by the way; I’m from Germany). I have been playing Legacy since shortly after Zendikar was released. From the beginning, I played Blue-based decks most of the time, quite often decks like Canadian Thresh or Team America. Team America was actually what I played for the first few months of this year. Then Reid Duke got sixth at the SCG Open in Boston with a RUG (Red Blue Green) Natural Order deck, and everything changed.

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  • Commander: Sharuum Control (Competitive 1vs1)

    Few months ago, I went to my local store in Barcelona and some of my friends started talking about this new format called Commander, and that they wanted to try it out. I knew about the existance of EDH (Elder Dragon Highlander) but, honestly, it never caught my attention. Everybody was talking marvellous things about Commander,  the format where you could play with those old-school staples that were hidden in you dusty shoe boxes.

    The dusty commons, uncommons and rares turned out to be a fun but losing machine. My friends and I tend to play for ante in every single format, so it took me few games (and bucks) to go from casual playing to designing a unbeatable deck for 1vs1.  So, what does it take to build a tier deck in commander?

    The following article (which is free by the way) will try to cover my personal approach to competitive 1vs1 Commander based on the general Sharuum the Hegemon. This 99+1 card deck is designed to win games, and for that you need acceleration, protection, creatures, broken spells, removals, etc… but also, you need a well designed mana base.

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  • So Many Insane Plays – 2011 Q2 Vintage Metagame Report

    (Editor’s Note: This former Downloadable Product has now been made free to all customers. Enjoy!)

    Ah Vintage, you are a stunning creature. Just 18 and a half years old, reaching maturity, you are in full bloom. It is my pleasure to help others appreciate your wonder. The Vintage metagame is a special creature, but it takes a seasoned hand to help illuminate this beauty. Every quarter, just as corporate America is compiling and releasing earnings reports for investors and regulators, I am doing the same, but for the Vintage format.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – What is the LEAST Unrestrictable Card in Vintage?

    This month may herald some exciting changes to the Vintage Restricted List. In recent years, the DCI has typically made adjustments to the Vintage Banned and Restricted List mid-year, perhaps with an eye towards the Vintage Championship at GenCon. For each of the last five years, changes to the Vintage Restricted list have been announced, and all of the announced changes to the Vintage occurred in June or September.
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  • Why Fact or Fiction Should Be Unrestricted: An Open Letter to the DCI

    (Editor’s Note: this article was co-authored by Stephen Menendian and William Winger

    Almost ten years on, the time has come to reconsider Fact or Fiction‘s restricted status. As difficult as it is for us Eternal enthusiasts to believe, Fact or Fiction has now inhabited the Vintage Restricted List for half of the game’s existence. Announced December 2001, and effective January 1st, 2002, the restriction of Fact or Fiction demarcates the midpoint in the life of the Vintage format and the game itself, the fulcrum between 1993 and 2011. This fact underscores the need to reconsider whether it still deserves to be restricted. We make the case not only that Fact or Fiction no longer deserves that status, and can join the ranks of cards like Gush and Frantic Search which have safely returned to the format unrestricted, but that its unrestriction would be a net positive, promoting the strategic diversity of the format and generating interest, enthusiasm, and good will throughout the format.
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  • 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.
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  • 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!
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  • 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!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – New Phyrexia Vintage Set Review

    (Editor’s Note: This content was formerly published on Quiet Speculation, and the former Downloadable Product has since been made available free here with the permission of the author and QS. Enjoy!)

    The Phyrexians have arrived, and they seek to remake the orb of Mirrodin in their own image. Will they remake Vintage as well?
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  • 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!
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  • 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! Continue Reading

  • 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)! Continue Reading

  • 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. Continue Reading

  • 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.
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  • 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.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – The 2010 Vintage Year in Review

    2009 was the Year of the Monster. 2009 witnessed the printing of many new colossi: Inkwell Leviathan, Sphinx of the Steel Wind, and Iona, Shield of Emeria, most prominently. 2010 marked the dawning of a brave new world for Vintage players, a world awakened. Continue Reading

  • So Many Insane Plays – The Mirrodin Besieged Vintage Set Review

    (Editor’s Note: This content was formerly published on Quiet Speculation, and the former Downloadable Product has since been made available free here with the permission of the author and QS. Enjoy!)

    I. Introduction

    Welcome loyal reader! In this article I continue my long tradition of reviewing new sets for Vintage format (the greatest format!) applications. As always, I will also provide a checklist of cards from Mirrodin Besieged that you will want to acquire to complete your collection and enable you to play any deck in the format. This checklist will give you a heads up over the competition, and allow you to make better trades. I will tell you which cards you should pick up now, which cards you should wait to pick up (because I expect them to fall in price), and which cards will be the sleepers you can make a killing on.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Decoding the DCI

    The DCI is a body composed of some of the smartest people in Magic. Unfortunately, intelligence does not entail the ability to communicate ideas or thoughts clearly or effectively. Tom LaPille was a notable addition to the staff of Wizards of the Coast, not simply because of his accomplishments in Magic, but because of his ability to communicate the groupthink of a nest of brainiacs to the outside world. With notable speed Tom became the voice of Wizards R&D as he took over the reins of the column titled Latest Developments. This is not to say that Erik Lauer, the individual responsible for explaining the most recent changes to the Banned and Restricted List, has not explained the changes clearly or effectively. However, further elaboration or insight would be helpful. The implications of the most recent B/R list announcement reach Vintage as well as Legacy. Permit me to attempt to decode the DCI…

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  • So Many Insane Plays – Why Survival Should Not Be Banned in Legacy, But Will Be Anyway

    Survival of the Fittest is putting up unseemly – even gaudy – performance statistics. By any reasonable accounting, it’s dominating the Legacy format, if measured primarily by performance on the StarCityGames (SCG) Legacy Open series. I won’t rehash that data. Admittedly, there is some question about the scope of the data – whether its exclusive reliance on American tournament performance is truly representative of global metagame dominance. More than a few European players point to the European championships as counter-evidence (Editor’s Note: as well as the LCL series and every other large European tournament that is not SCG). But with that caveat, there is more than enough statistical evidence of Survival dominance.
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  • 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!

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  • 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.
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