Stephen Menendian takes a deep look into the Dragon’s Maze for potential Eternal playables, and reviews the set with his characteristic insight and detailed analysis. Stephen has also conducted some preliminary testing of an unrestricted Regrowth in Vintage, and briefly shares some insights that you do not want to miss. Finally, for collectors, traders, and Vintage enthusiasts alike, be sure to check out the updated Vintage Checklist of playables.
[Begin Free Excerpt From So Many Insane Plays – Dragon’s Maze Eternal Set Review & Updated Vintage Checklist]
Welcome loyal reader to another Vintage set review. You may have noticed that I did not write a set review for Gatecrash. There were at least three reasons for this. First, Gatecrash appeared to be a particularly weak set for Vintage. This fear has been proven well-founded three months since its release. Virtually nothing in the set has seen much, if any, Vintage play. However, there was much more in the set that was worth analyzing than appeared at first glance. I even ended up writing two full free articles on the Rogue Hermit deck in both Vintage and Legacy. That should satisfy at least some of your craving for Gatecrash content.
Second, I am shifting most of my premium content to perennial content – material that is either educational or entertaining on a longer-term basis. Primers and tournament reports, while not timeless, are less time sensitive than metagame reports or set reviews. I’ve even shifted the tone and style of my tournament reports to emphasize decision trees and situational analysis more than technology or metagame shifts in order to make them entertaining and insightful long after the tournament has concluded. The relatively slow evolution of Vintage and Legacy makes this possible.
It turns out that, after watching sales on older set reviews, many readers do not pick up set reviews in the week or even the month after a release, but turn to them a few months afterward, when they are trying to catch up on the Eternal scene or turning their attention back to the game. This makes sense. Eternal players are older and busier than Standards Magic players. They are often professionals trying to juggle family responsibilities, and while they enjoy the game, they do not devote the kind of close attention that is sometimes required of other formats. What that means is that there is a demand for this kind of article on a longer time horizon than I had imagined. If there is demand for this, I will continue to create it for you.
Finally, I felt that my regular set-review podcasts provided an equally useful outlet for this kind of information. As Kevin Cron and I have continually refined our So Many Insane Plays podcast, I have used that medium to share similar insights and information. Writing a full set review seemed duplicative in some degree, but it turns out that that may not be the case. While there is overlap, the mediums are different, and different kinds of information are best conveyed through each medium. I can, for example, create lists, tables, charts in set reviews that are harder to convey in a radio-show like podcast. I will do my best, as I did in my Return to Ravnica set review, to take advantage of this medium’s opportunities for that kind of presentation. It also allows me an opportunity to update the Vintage Checklist of tournament playables, which is included for your convenience to help you update, modernize, and organize your collection. If you are a trader or dealer who deals in Eternal cards, the checklist is an invaluable resource for you as well.
I will also discuss the unrestriction of Regrowth, its implications, uses, and predict what it means for the format.
[End Free Excerpt]