So Many Insane Plays – 1st Place in Vacaville: Two Burning Tendrils Tournament Reports


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Hot off his Team Serious Open victory in December, Stephen Menendian took his Burning Tendrils creation to another 1st place finish in Vacaville this past month. Read this epic 29 page double tournament report to see what the latest changes are that Stephen has made to combat the ever-evolving metagame. Complete with play-by-play game coverage and Stephen’s characteristic detailed analysis, trace both the lows and learning experiences of an underwhelming tournament performance, to lessons learned translating into the highs of another tournament victory at the most recent Vacaville vintage tournament. Follow Stephen’s thought process in each situation as you learn how to become a better combo pilot by learning from the best in the format.

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Reflections on the November Vacaville Tournament
I would be in denial to say I wasn’t extremely disappointed with my performance in this tournament. But what I was not was deterred. I knew that my deck was the best deck in the field, and my suboptimal play doomed me. I believed that, had I made top 4, I would have won that tournament. Despite receiving some quite harsh criticism on the Internet, I resolved to continue to play Burning Long, and to win tournaments.

I put much thought into revising and improving my deck for the pending Team Serious Open on December 30 2012, the next opportunity I would have to play this in a tournament. I extensively tested the Workshop matchup, even publishing this matchup analysis, to illustrate how to handle the Workshop matchup on the draw. I then made critical maindeck and sideboard tweaks in preparation for the Team Serious Open, which I then won. My tournament report, deck changes, and explanations can all be read here.

Return to Vacaville: January 19, 2013
Although I couldn’t have been happier with my Team Serious Burning Tendrils list, I knew that I needed to make a few critical adjustments moving forward, as I hinted at in my Team Serious Open tournament report. What were they?
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