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  • Gatecrash Type 4 Set Review

    Gatecrash Type 4 Set Review

    With the newly released Gatecrash hitting retailer’s shelves this week, it’s time to take a look at what impact this will have on the greatest casual format of all time: Type 4. While not quite as exciting as Return to Ravnica, Gatecrash still offers a number of flavorful additions you’ll want to track down to add to your stack.
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  • Dominating the Dojo – 1st Place in Bloomsburg with Twaunspresso Stax


    A ways back, Hitman (aka Paul Kim) mentioned making the trip out to Bloomsburg (PA, USA) to battle for a Mox Emerald. After a pep talk from fellow hip hop aficionado and Sucka Free MC Yangtime (aka Jerry Yang) I was talked into attending. It went a little something like this…
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  • 1st Place at Action Comics Vintage Vegas January, With Burning Long


    We had another great Vintage tournament at Action Games and Comics on Saturday, January 19. The turnout was a bit better than last time, but not enough for 5 rounds and a cut to top 8. Baby steps. At least there is Vintage being played!

    I chose to play the same deck that I played last time, Burning Long. The deck has some very absurd draws and can attack from many angles. Whether you are storming your opponent out with Tendrils of Agony or abusing Oath of Druids in any number of manners, you can dodge specific hate that your opponents are packing for more linear decks and fight back with great success. Continue Reading

  • Schools of Magic: History of Vintage – 1995 & 1996

    Building on the foundation of Schools of Magic: History of Vintage 1993 & 1994, author Stephen Menendian dives deep into the history of the Type I/Vintage format in this historical look at 1995 & 1996, the most formative years in the format’s grand history. Do not miss the story of The Deck, perhaps the most famous archetype in the format’s history. Culled from long forgotten archival materials, historical records, new exclusive interviews with key players of the era, and much much more, you will see decks published in these pages for the first time ever and read about:
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Victory with Burning Tendrils *1st Place*

    Stephen Menendian has finally had the chance to play his latest Vintage creation in a marquis event, and ended up winning the tournament! Read play-by-play action of 8 rounds of tournament Magic, and learn how to employ Stephen’s latest sideboard and tournament refinements. Learn strategy, tips, tactics, and decision making in critical situations, all in this 25+ page in-depth accounting of tournament victory at the Team Serious Open with Burning Long.
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  • Rocking Junk – Why You Do Not Need to Play Blue to Win in Legacy

    Over the past couple of years in Legacy, there has been a bit of backlash against Blue for being very good. Blue is able to counter spells, draw more cards, and manipulate other cards. No other color has access to the array and variability of these techniques like blue, but, fear not. You don’t need to be playing Brainstorm, Force of Will, or Jace to be winning in Legacy. As we can see by recent results, many tournament top eight’s are filled with many different decks, including those that do not run any blue cards. This goes to show you the amazing diversity in the Legacy format and how much innovation is there, or opportunities just waiting to be exploited. Many have recently stated that Maverick, RUG Delver, and Miracles were the end-all be-all, but the results beg to differ.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Matchup Analysis: Burning Long on the Draw vs. MUD

    Stephen Menendian runs his new Burning Long deck up against Workshops for some intensive matchup analysis. Each game is with Burning Long on the draw for maximum difficulty, and greater challenge. This detailed, play-by-play article, taken from a long set of post-board games, illustrates the dangers and key principles of play for the Long pilot. This is a must-read for anybody interested in learning about the nuances of modern Vintage combo versus Workshops, especially for the aspiring combo players.
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  • The Void in Vacaville: A Vintage Tournament Report With Dredge

    “The one great crusade worthy of an enlightened man is that directed against whatever impoverishes imagination, wonder, sensation, dramatic life, and the appreciation of beauty. Nothing else matters. And not even this really matters in the great void, but it is amusing to play a little in the sun before the blind universe dispassionately pulverizes us again into that primordial nothingness from whence it moulded us for a second’s sport.” – HP Lovecraft

    Vintage for Cash is a tournament series in Northern California organized by Blaine Christiansen and hosted by Olde World Games in Vacaville (CA, USA). So far there have been four events, and this tournament report describes the most recent on November 3rd 2012. I suspected there might be a small turnout for this one since it was only announced a few weeks ahead of time. Blaine wanted to get in one more Vintage event before the holidays. Little did I know there was also a PTQ to siphon away some of the non-Eternal specialists leaving us with only 11 people actually showing up (the previous 2 iterations had 18 and 16). Small does not mean uncompetitive, however. Blaine (Finalist at 2012 Vintage Champs) organized the event, and it was known that Stephen Menendian (former Vintage Champ and all around Vintage heavy-weight) and David Ochoa (returning to Vintage fresh off an amazing Pro Tour performance) would be in attendance, not to mention other good players from the area whose names Vintage enthusiasts across the country might not recognize. Realizing that outplaying my opponents was likely a losing proposition, I decided to play up other aspects of “the game,” namely deck selection and metagaming.
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  • Schools of Magic: History of Vintage – 1993 & 1994

    Several years in the making, Schools of Magic: History of Vintage is a brand new series tracing the rich and exciting history of what has become Vintage. Stephen Menendian has been researching the obscure and often forgotten history of Magic’s oldest and most interesting format. For the first time, you can now read the history of Vintage/Type 1 Magic from 1993 to the present. Each chapter will cover a year in the history of the game, highlighting major new printings, innovations and the emergent new decks that resulted. The ultimate payoff for the reader is a profound appreciation for the strategic evolution of the game, and a keen recognition of the ways in which the strategies that emerged in the format that began in 1993-1994 continue unabated today in the Vintage format, from the Weissman school to the O’Brien School. While this series is intended for Eternal fans, and Vintage players in particular, anyone and everyone who enjoys Magic, from the wily Pro Tour veteran to the kitchen table casual player, will enjoy this story.
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  • 2nd Place at Action Comics Vegas Vintage, With Burning Long

    Vintage, my favorite format by far, has eluded me for the most part for the last few years. Once upon a time, thanks to the innovation of proxy tournaments, Vintage saw a surge in popularity and tournament play thanks to SCG and their P9 series. Now, no thanks to the innovation of proxy tournaments, Vintage has seen a decline in play and popularity marking it as barely discussed and almost completely irrelevant save for a few tournaments a year. I believe without card ownership (too many proxies), gamers have no ownership in the format, thus dooming it to failure.

    But this isn’t an article about why Vintage, for the most part, has failed. This is a tournament report and for the Vegas Vintage tournament this past weekend, and a reminder that while Vintage is waning, it is still a great format full of endless possibilities and tremendous fun!
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  • Modern Masters Announced – Tarmogoyf (and more) Reprints on the Way!

    During the coverage of Pro Tour Return to Ravnica this weekend, Mark Rosewater and company dropped a bomb on the audience. A brand new 229 card set scheduled for June 7, 2013 titled Modern Masters will be released, featuring reprints of Modern legal cards only, as a way to jump start interest in Modern and increase card availability. Tarmogoyf was the first card previewed for reprint, and you can expect a slew of other big name cards as well. The set will not be Standard legal, but will obviously be legal in any formats the cards are normally legal in (ala Coldsnap).
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Doomsday: The Puzzling – Five Puzzles to Blow Your Mind!

    Stephen Menendian returns to (finally!) publish an update to his inspired Legacy Doomsday that many of you have been clamoring for! More importantly, he’s here to test your skills, challenge your knowledge of the format, and expand your mind as he takes you to your wit’s limit with five brilliant and progressively difficult puzzles.
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  • The Legacy Laser – UBR Ad Nauseam Tendrils

    Hello everyone and welcome to my first article on Eternal Central, where I’ll talk about the Legacy Laser aka UBR Ad Nauseam Tendrils (ANT) that I used to win Grand Prix Ghent, and split the finals of the big Legacy tournament at Ovino 7. I usually don’t write articles, because I prefer the free train of thought style of blogging. This is not your average strategy article. You have been warned.
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter XXIII: Cards Damaged by Machine

    Editor’s Introduction: In this week’s Magic Oddica TheMisprintGuy looks at a couple of Magic cards that were damaged by the printing and packaging machines, other than being crimped. Check out Chapter XXIII of Keith Adams‘ Magic Oddica to learn all about these unique misprints!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – The Glorious Return of Burning Long!

    Combo is coming! Long.dec is back! Dark Rituals are back! Stephen Menendian has been working tirelessly since the announcement unrestricting Burning Wish. He has been testing, tuning, and brewing Burning Tendrils. Stephen has uncovered some critical discoveries and made some incredible design leaps to unleash a deck that he firmly believes is well positioned to take its place in the top tier of the Vintage metagame. In this article, Stephen will take you through a meticulous design process, a careful primer on how to employ each tactic, and a detailed analysis of card selection and omission. Let Stephen guide you on an entertaining ride through new Vintage!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – A Time For Grixis Control and Other Thoughts on the Vintage Metagame

    The night before the Vintage Championship I struggled to decide what I would play. As recounted in my GenCon Vintage Champs report, I had decided I would play Cobra Gush in the prelim tournament, based upon my conclusion that it was the best Gush option. Despite my strong performance, I still sensed – inchoately – that UBR Confidant/Jace Control might actually be a better option, especially in a Workshop heavy metagame. I had just such a list drawn up and ready for testing that night.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Return to Ravnica Eternal Set Review

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

    Welcome to Ravnica. Welcome back, that is. This seems to be a motif of Magic: revisiting old haunts, often with new twists. If we look more deeply, Return to Ravnica is less of a return than a revolt from Ravnica. While superficially similar, the mechanics, themes, and ideas are a rejection of what we found in Ravnica. Yes, the Guilds exist. Yes, hybrid cards are here. Yes, dual lands and mana producing artifacts are here.
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  • Return to Ravnica Type 4 Set Review

    While the newly released Return to Ravnica set looks to be very good for Standard and Modern constructed formats, it will be equally exciting for the greatest casual format of all time: Type 4. There are some really standout cards that will be ramp up the power of any Type 4 stack. Check out our review after the jump!
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  • Soly Says: A Primer on RUG Delver in Vintage

    A Brief History of RUG Delver

    In April of 2012 I built a RUGB Gush deck for Vintage at my friend Travis Heipp’s apartment, testing for an upcoming Xtreme Games event. Originally it was a relatively standard Gush deck splashing red for a couple of Lightning Bolts and green for Fastbond, while also playing both colors to support Ancient Grudge. After getting thrashed by Travis’ version of the UR Landstill deck, I realized that Lightning Bolt was very strong right now, but while the rest of the deck seemed to include the “broken” plays of Vintage, lacked effective ways to really interact with the most popular current strategies in Vintage (Landstill and Workshops being everywhere at the time).
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  • GenCon 2012 Legacy Champs Winner – A Report on Sneak & Show

    Hey everyone, welcome to what I hope will be an entertaining romp through a written detail on what turned out to be a particularly sweet GenCon this year, some discussion on Show and Tell variants, and the story of my win at Legacy Champs!
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  • Soly at GenCon: Bolt to the Cranium!

    Welcome to my first article for Eternal Central! I’ll share with you my experiences playing a deck I’ve developed and tuned in Vintage called RUG Delver, and also the awesome times I had at GenCon 2012 this past weekend.

    My notes and reports won’t be as detailed as some, as this is just from memory and I will mainly just highlight the key plays that won or lost a particular game. So let’s do it!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – 2012 Vintage Championship Report & Post-Mortem

    The Vintage Championship is the one of the few Vintage “majors,” tournaments of higher level competition and prestige. The most famous European major is the Bazaar of Moxen, renowned for its extraordinary prize payout. Although the Vintage Championship does not have the best prize payout of the Vintage majors, like the Italian OvinoGeddon or the American Waterbury, it does have a prize that is perhaps more coveted: a piece of original alternate artwork of one of the ‘Power Nine’ cards, framed as a trophy.
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  • It’s a Dredgedy – 37th out of 1,345 with Dredge at GP Ghent

    Hello and welcome back to my article cycle about Dredge. Today I’ll be writing a tournament report about the Legacy Grand Prix in Ghent. Of course I played Dredge (decklist here, for reference) because it’s the only deck I feel most confidant with while playing. And you need confidence at the Grand Prix.
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter XXII: Taped Cards

    Editor’s Introduction: In this week’s Magic Oddica TheMisprintGuy shares a few Magic cards that received a bit of an extra sticky treatment. Check out Chapter XXII of Keith Adams‘ Magic Oddica to learn all about these unique collectibles!
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