Category Archives

    Articles

  • All
  • 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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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.

    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.

    Continue Reading

  • 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! 

    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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!

    Vintage
    Fact or Fiction is no longer Restricted.

    Legacy
    Mental Misstep is Banned.

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

    Extended
    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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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!
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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 mtgthesource.com 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!

    Continue Reading

  • 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.

    Continue Reading

  • 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.

    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading

  • 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.
    Continue Reading