It’s been a big week in Magic: the Gathering. Read on for some of the most notable in MtG gaming, coverage, content, and community from the past week, including the recent pro tour in Montreal, various metagame analyses, and some incredible fan art.
- Pro Tour Gatecrash
- WotC Announcements at the PT
- Pro Tour Tech and Standard Meta Analysis
- Other Formats
- Upcoming Tournaments
- Learn about GTC Draft
- Brews and Theory This Week
- Fantasy/Art Content This Week
- Casual and EDH/Commander This Week
- Social-Community Happenings
Tom Martell, of Team Star City Games(SCG), took down the first pro tour of 2013. He battled through a stacked Top 8 at Pro Tour Gategrash(#PTGTC) to bring home the cup with Sam Black’s aggro-combo deck, The Aristocrats. Read a report of the action on DailyMTG.
Two competitors at PTGTC on the controversial new special invites turned heads by cracking the Top 8 – Eric Froehlich reached the top four and Melissa DeTora lost in the quarter-finals, making her the first female to Top 8 a Pro Tour. She was the only player to go undefeated in matches on day one with an 8-0 record.
WotC Announcements at the PT
Wizards of the Coast also made two exciting announcements at PTGTC. First, they will be reinstating the fourth pro tour starting with the 2014 season. Pros and fans everywhere rejoiced. Check out the poignant words of Brian Kibler on some of the problems that the professional MtG system currently faces. (Warning, paid-subscription wall).
Second, WotC announced the next premium From the Vault collection, FTV:20, which will feature 20 cards instead of the usual 15, one defining card from a tournament-winning deck for each year of Magic’s lifetime. Check out speculation on this FTV’s content from LegitMTG’s Trevor Holness.
The Gatecrash Standard format is young, and the technology from this weekend will shape the metagame for weeks to come. Channel Fireball’s (CFB) Tom Ross looks at the future of Standard format in the wake of PTGTC with a breakdown of cards and tech.
Many people expected the PT to be full of aggressive decks influenced by Tomoharu Saito‘s daily incredible innovations in the run up to the PT. Players responded with a slew of mid-range decks to combat aggro, which ended up relatively absent. Check out a statistical breakdown of the entire meta at PTGTC.
For a video summary of all these notes and more, head over to Star City Games for Episode 20 of Magic: the Newsening.
SCG ran its weekly Standard and Legacy tournaments. Billy P took down a large Standard field with Jund Midrange, while Zack Mullin walked away with the Legacy prize. He overcame the new hot thing, Shardless Bug, with Sneak and Show featuring mainboard Flusterstorms as anti-combo tech that also wins the counter war,
Several Modern PTQs fired this weekend as well, both in paper and online. MTGO Academy offers a look at what did well and how various metas across the globe are responding to recent bannings.
Two big events are available on steam this weekend. GP Charlotte will be hosted by SCG, and the format is Gatecrash sealed. Coverage begins at 10 AM ET on Saturday, February 23, and you can catch the steam on SCGLive, or the SCG or Dailymtg twitch channel. Find links to the streams here.
Watch GP Québec City if you’re interested in Standard. Coverage on the stream begins at 3:00 PM ET on Saturday. Links here.
Craig Wescoe offers insight too good to pass up despite being a week old. He walks through 10 gatecrash drafts and discusses card evaluation and deck construction. This is great for people still learning the intricacies of drafting.
Dan Nelson offers perhaps his last, sadly, in the incredible “Limiting Chance” series. This week he applies his statistical acumen to curving out and mana cost distributions.
Lastly, here’s an effective mana base worksheet for current standard from CFB.
Gathering Magic’s “Artist Spotlight” serves up some of the sweetest altered card art this side of an Eric Klug reinterpretation.
Here’s an Isperia commander deck that plays with fun and gamesmanship in the true, True spirit of EDH. Consider the “problem with nice things” this week, thanks to an examination of the primordial card cycle from GTC, thanks to the piss and vinegar of DJ over at General Damage Control.
Seminal MtG designer and always-interesting Mark Rosewater started a battle for best set that he lead-designed. You can participate and follow the discussion on Twitter at #RosewaterRumble, or just check out MTGColorPie’s awesome bracket for the breakdown as of day nine.
This comic from the ManaDeprived column “Durdling Around” has been tearing up Twitter today. It offers the perfect counterpoint to the emergence of a certain, previously mentioned PTGTC beau.
That’s it for this week. If I missed something, tough! The Magical Internet is huge.
If you have comments or questions, post below or shoot them to me on my Twitter handle @MdaveCs. GTWM is a work in progress and I’d love ideas of how to evolve it to make it more useful. Podcasts and more video content will come as a get more efficient at reviewing the plethora of writing the MtG community pumps out.
Thanks for reading