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  • So Many Insane Plays – Trends & Predictions for 2012 & A Vintage Tournament Report

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

    Welcome Vintage addict, and happy holidays. In this article, I will present my final tournament report of the year, in which I narrowly missed Top 8 on account of a few critical play errors. I took more detailed post-match notes than in recent tournaments, so I may delve more deeply into game states. This kind of analysis is among the most pedagogically helpful for Vintage readers, and will hopefully be entertaining as well. But perhaps just as important is my analysis of the trends of the format and my predictions for 2012.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – The 2011 Vintage Year in Review

    Vintage in 2011 was simply amazing. Each new printing, deck, and idea – each new development – formed a chain of dominoes that led to one incredible story after another. I feel sorry for you if you missed it. The good news is that I’ll tell you all about it. For those of you who played Vintage in 2011, you can relive it again. It’s all too easy to get caught up in the moment. The year’s end is a time for perspective, to reflect on events and to find meaning in them.
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter VIII: Cards With Multiple Mistakes

    Editor’s introduction: What’s more bizarre than one mistake on a card? Easy: Two mistakes. WRONG! How about three mistakes on one single card? Check out Chapter VIII of Keith Adams‘ Magic Oddica to learn more about cards with multiple mistakes.

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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter VII: Upside Down Backs

    Ǝpıʇoɹ’s ıuʇɹopnɔʇıou: Iu ʍǝǝʞ sǝʌǝu oɟ ʞǝıʇɥ ∀pɐɯs, Wɐƃıɔ Oppıɔɐ ɥǝ ʇnɹus ǝʌǝɹʎʇɥıuƃ ndsıpǝ poʍu¡ Ɔlıɔʞ ou ʇɥǝ ,,ɯoɹǝ,, qnʇʇou ʇo ʞuoʍ ɯoɹǝ¡

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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter VI: Square Cornered Cards

    Editor’s introduction: Our sixth chapter from Keith Adams, aka TheMisprint Guy, Magic Oddica talks about the Squared Cornered Cards. Don’t get me wrong, we ain’t talking about Collectors or International Edition. We are talking about cards that got cut the wrong way. Why? Keep reading after the bump.

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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter V: Invitational Cards

    Editor’s introduction: Week 5! After a full month of rarities from Keith Adam’s Oddica, he’s back to show us some of the sickest cards ever. Have you ever seen a Black Lotus that costs 3 mana? Do you want to know more about this Invitational Cards? Keep reading after the jump!

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  • Scars of Mirrodin Type 4 Set Review

    Welcome back to Eternal Central for yet another Type 4 Set Retro-Review! This time we’ll be looking at Scars of Mirrodin. In our quest to form the ultimate Type 4 stack and help you tweak yours, we are going back and exploring in depth all of the last couple of years worth of sets to see what may have been lost in the shuffle.

    I’m going to be going back through all of the last sets of the last couple of years and writing Retro-Reviews for the things I didn’t pay enough attention to for Type 4, and this is the second in that series. So join us as we delve into the secrets of Scars of Mirrodin in this Retro-Review!
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter IV: Hair in the cards

    Editor’s introduction: As promised last week, this week chapter of Keith Adam‘s Magic Oddica is bizarre! Keith is introducing us to a weird type of misprint: Cards that accidentally got a hair during the printing process. Do you want to know more? Keep reading!

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  • So Many Insane Plays – Understanding Remora Gush

    (Editor’s Note: This former Downloadable Product has now been made free to all customers. It has also been retitled from the previous title ‘So Many Insane Plays – Remora Gush: The Final Evolution of Gush in 2011.’ Enjoy!)

    The Vintage metagame is deep and rich. There are more options than ever for the Vintage player. Blue pilots can choose between Confidant/Jace decks, Snapcaster Control, Gush decks at the top tier, and a myriad of other choices such as Standstill, Oath, Painter, or Fact or Fiction-based decks. Combo pilots can choose among Confidant TPS, Worldgorger Dragon Combo, and now Doomsday. Workshop players can choose among aggressive builds, like Slash Panther, controlling builds, like Nick Detwiler’s Espresso Stax, and more combo oriented builds, like the Kuldotha Forgemaster decks that are rampant in Europe.
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  • Mirrodin Besieged Type 4 Set Review

    Welcome back to Eternal Central for another Type 4 set review! This time we’ll be looking at Mirrodin Besieged. What’s that, you say? Mirrodin Besieged in an old set that came out like 9 months ago in February 2011?

    Yeah, yeah; I know. But I never looked through it in its entirety to explore the full potential the set would have on Type 4 stacks across the globe. I’m going to be going back through all of the last sets of the last couple of years and writing Retro-Reviews for the things I didn’t pay enough attention to for Type 4, and this is the first in that series. After researching and reviewing in preparation for this article, I can say that Mirrodin Besieged is a very good set in terms of Type 4 applicability, and is full of cards that are likely to make your stack better. So if you haven’t already added all of the Mirrodin Besieged cards to your own Type 4 stack, or are just curious what I think is good, giddy up and join me for a Retro-Review!
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter III: Wyvern backed cards

    Editor’s introduction: Chapter III of our very special Magic Oddica by Keith Adams, aka TheMisprintGuy. On this chapter, Keith introduces us to the Wyvern backed cards; a very rare type of misprint. We have to aware you guys, from this chapter on, the Oddica is going to turn more and more bizarre!

    TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter III: Wyvern backed cards.

    An exceptional way to get a customer to try a different product that you are offering is to cross promote something. And Wizards of the Coast did just that. Problem is, this was done purely by accident. What I am talking about are some mistakes commonly referred to as “Wyvern backs.”

    In 1994, Carti Mundi was manufacturing several different card games. Two of these games were Wyvern and Magic: the Gathering. Due to a rare mistake at the printing press, several cards were made that combined these two games. Each card had Wyvern’s traditional card back, along with Magic’s card front. All cards made with this error are commons from the Fallen Empires expansion.

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  • So Many Insane Plays – Is Vintage ‘Too Fast’ or in a Golden Era?

    Brian DeMars recently penned an article titled ‘Is Vintage Too Fast?‘ While the article is framed as a question, it doesn’t take a psychic to guess at the author’s answer. Brian forcefully argues that Vintage is too fast, and that the DCI should restrict Bazaar of Baghdad and Gush to slow it down.
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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter II: Crimps

    Editor’s introduction: Chapter II of our very special Magic Oddica by Keith Adams, aka TheMisprintGuy. This time Keith is covering another common type of rarity: Crimped cards. After Chapter II, Keith will start covering some of the most amazing rarities ever seen, but in order to understand some of this type of misprints, we need to start from the basics.

    TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter II: Crimps.

    One of Magic: the Gathering‘s most likely errors is that of crimped cards. “Crimps” refers to a mistake that happens during the packaging process. Sometimes one or more cards will not be placed into a pack properly, and when a pack is sealed a misplaced card will be crimped along the top or bottom of the card.

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  • TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica – Chapter I: Miscuts

    Editor’s introduction: We are proud to introduce you to our new Eternal Central Contributor, Keith Adams, aka TheMisprintGuy. Keith will be publishing a weekly video-column named TheMisprintGuy Magic Oddica where he’ll cover the huge specter of the most amazing Magic rarities.

    Before we move on to his very first article we would like to introduce you to Keith Adams with a little bio about him:

    Keith Adams has been collecting & playing Magic: the Gathering since 1995. In 2001, Keith purchased a few misprinted cards, and never looked back. Today, he has one of the world’s largest collections specializing in misprints, test prints, & other hard to find rarities that are almost unheard of in the Magic: the Gathering community. Keith has now joined our team of writers to expand your knowledge of the world of oddities!

    Keith’s collection ranges from cards that pre-date Alpha to the downright strange items that never should have left the factory. A Black Lotus that has a casting cost of 3 mana? A Time Walk that is red? Cards that have more than one set printed on them? They really do exist, and Keith will turn these imperfections into a virtual gallery to share with us, so stay tuned!

    Click on Read More to discover his very first article! 

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  • So Many Insane Plays – Top 8 With Doomsday at Waterbury, and Forward Thinking

    Last week Stephen Menendian unveiled an explosive new Doomsday deck. This week he provides a detailed tournament report, including a blow by blow account of battling his way to the Top 8 of the esteemed Waterbury/TMD Open 15 tournament, including an epic match with the legendary Chris Pikula.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – DOOMSDAY RETURNS! How to Build Doomsday Piles and Win in Modern Vintage

    Hot off a Top 8 at the Waterbury/TMD 15 Open playing Doomsday, Stephen Menendian has written a primer on this unusual and exciting archetype. In this primer Stephen explains optimal deck construction, Doomsday piles, and sideboarding options and plans. With over 15 different Doomsday scenarios analyzed with detailed graphics, this article is a treat for all Magic lovers!
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Innistrad: A Comprehensive Vintage Set Review

    SMIP Innistrad Set Review

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

    I. Introduction and Overview

    Welcome loyal reader to my Innistrad Set Review!

    This article is dense and action packed. I will begin by recapping my New Phyrexia Set Review, and evaluating my predictions there. I will then talk about what entered Vintage with M12, and with the metagame changes this summer. Then I will share my thoughts on Innistrad, beginning with an essay on Innistrad, followed by a comprehensive analysis of which cards are Unplayable, Remotely Playable, Possibly Playable, and Definitely Playable. Finally, I will unveil the list of cards you will want to pick up from Innistrad, and the updated Vintage Checklist. Whew, that’s a lot to get to, so let’s get started!
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  • Innistrad Type 4 Set Review

    The full Innistrad spoiler is now out, and that means it’s time for set reviews from everybody and their mother. But this is no ordinary set review, this is a set review specifically for Type 4! Woohooooo!

    For the uninitiated, Type 4 is a casual game with a shared stack/deck of cards, infinite mana, and the ability for each player to cast up to only one spell a turn (one on your turn, one on player 2’s turn, one on player 3’s turn, etc.). The full rules and an introduction can be found here, courtesy of our very own Stephen Menendian.

    Ultimately, each builder of a Type 4 stack will determine the flavor and play style of their stack by how it is constructed, with the delicate balance of creatures, tutors, removal, counterspells, and everything else. They will also dictate the power level by what spells are deemed acceptable or too powerful. No matter how your stack is constructed each new set ultimately brings forth a few new interesting cards. With the Innistrad spoiler now in the wild, join us as we review all of the top contenders for slots in your ever expanding Type 4 stack!
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  • September 2011 Banned & Restricted Update Instant Analysis

    The DCI has announced their quarterly updates to the Banned and Restricted lists, and there are some major changes in Vintage, Legacy, Modern, and Extended!

    Fact or Fiction is no longer Restricted.

    Mental Misstep is Banned.

    Blazing Shoal is Banned.
    Cloudpost is Banned.
    Green Sun’s Zenith is Banned.
    Ponder is Banned.
    Preordain is Banned.
    Rite of Flame is Banned.

    Jace, the Mind Sculptor is Banned.
    Mental Misstep is Banned.
    Ponder is Banned.
    Preordain is Banned.
    Stoneforge Mystic is Banned.

    These are some major changes to every widely played format outside of Standard (where Jace and Stoneforge are already Banned). What does this mean for these formats? Check out our Instant Analysis after the jump!
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  • Chasing the Mind’s Desire – Looking Ahead to the September 2011 Banned-Restricted List Announcement

    The next Banned and Restricted List announcement will be delivered September 20th 2011, if this announcement is in keeping with the timetable established over the last three years or so. About three months ago Stephen Menendian, a former Vintage World Champion, and I co-wrote an article outlining why Fact or Fiction should be unrestricted for Vintage play. Unfortunately the importance the DCI felt in addressing the problem with Standard, where they banned both Stoneforge Mystic and Jace, the Mind Sculptor, prevented them from focusing their attention on the other formats. In the intervening time we’re seen the birth of a new format, Modern, which has already been played at the highest level in Pro Tour: Philly. Including the shift in Standard due to rotation as Innistrad enters, I think there is the possibility that each of the formats (Standard, Modern, Legacy, and Vintage) look very different on October 1st than they do today.

    In this article we’ll target Vintage specifically, as it’s a format I believe is ripe for potential changes. Join us as we delve into a look at the Vintage landscape, and what ramifications possible changes could have as we analyze some of the weaker cards on the Vintage Restricted List.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – From Confidant to Cobra Gush: First Place in Sandusky

    Today, Stephen Menendian unveils his post-Vintage Champs deck of choice. The recent Team Serious Open in Sandusky, Ohio, provided a battle ground in the post-Champs metagame, with many of Vintage’s brightest minds in attendance. After the dust settled Stephen was crowned the winner, piloting an innovative take on Cobra Gush. He gives an in depth look at his card choices and reasoning, and looks at each of his games in this tournament, turn through turn, detailing the decision tree and ramifications of in-game actions.
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  • Tuning NO RUG Part Three – Unleashing the Hydra

    Sometimes, you just have it. I remember playing a tournament match against Zoo where my opponent was one game up. I was playing NO RUG, as usual. It was the last round and we were playing for Top 8 so I really wanted the win. Naturally, I had Natural Order on turn three in game two and turn five in game three. I just won. Sadly, this is not always how it goes, and it’s not always that easy. Today, we’re taking a look at one of these stories where we don’t always have the perfect hand.
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  • Vaulting Through Ohio – Vintage in Sandusky

    Earlier this year the members of Team Serious, that is, my teammates, decided there wasn’t enough Vintage action going on in the great Ohio valley, so they decided to do something about it and organized a tournament at POP! in Sandusky, Ohio (USA) for July 2nd, 2011. Team Serious extraordinaire Nat Moes of Charbelcher fame traveled in from the DC area and took down the whole thing with Wizards.dec. Yep, seriously. You can find all the sick decklists from that tournament here, courtesy of Asian assassin and rap battlemaster Twaun007.
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  • So Many Insane Plays – Understanding Confidant Gush

    (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!)

    Gush is the Vintage Magic equivalent of the Wonderlic test. How a player views Gush as a card is indicative and suggestive, although not determinative (by any means), of their Vintage IQ. If a player looks at Gush, and is either unimpressed or thinks it’s simply not that good, it is only a matter of time until they are proven wrong. If a player doesn’t know how to play Gush, and fumbles around with it in testing, it’s guaranteed that they will underestimate it. If a player casts Gush on turn two, and passes the turn without doing anything else meaningful, they are GushFailing.
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