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Survival Of The Damned

March 11, 2011

Where oh where is the Legacy metagame heading? That is a good question indeed and on that it certainly doesn’t have any direct answers at the moment. This weekend in Memphis another great event is taking place with another Star City Games Open event. Last weekend in Edison New Jersey, one deck seemed to come out top which is continuing to show just how open the current metagame is, and that deck is High Tide.

High Tide has kind of just been around for a while, but really didn’t get its big break more or less, but like many combo decks it can be deconstructed and torn apart by some deck. in my local meta there is one player who comes to mind during a mox event after my pairing in the 3rd round I saw the conclusion of a High Tide Vs Aluren deck, I gazed unfathomably at it as I saw the kind of mana production high tide pulled off, it was pretty epic to say the least seeing someone generate 76 Mana off of 6 lands in play and pin his opponent down just waiting for the kill. Which didn’t take long, after two more rounds of mana generation off of High Tide and the candle stick, he milled the Aluren opponent to victory. I must say I was rather impressed by it all, and also pleased that at that point I was sitting at 9 points and didn’t have to face that deck, in later rounds.

So what is my point at the moment? Well my point is Legacy is all over the place at the moment, one week High Tide wins, the event before, Team America, Before that it was CounterTopRUG, and before that the two other events at the start of the year Goblins….but look at the evolution just there

Goblins get beat by Top, Top gets beaten out by resilience and control, and then combo comes out swinging. now I am not saying all these faced each other but the over all feel of the evolution is this Aggro vile decks get nuked by control, especially those 1 and 2 drops, it annihilates vile strategy, but vile can sligh past it, but once a deck is prepared who knows how it will go. Either way it just shows you that so far it still being early in the 2011 Legacy season almost anything is possible.

So why exactly are we all here? Quite simply the answer is here:

Erik Lauer from the DCI explained the decision briefly:

In recent months, Survival of the Fittest decks have been outperforming other decks in Legacy. This has caused the competitive format to become significantly less diverse. This has reached a point where the DCI concluded that it is appropriate to ban a card.

If you go back and take a look at the numbers for when survival peaked it was a good deck before, but then it became a format breaking deck with the M11 Core Set release of Fauna Shaman:

This gave survival decks a huge advantage over other builds, as it now had a Survival package of two cards that did the same thing. One being the enchantment which is difficult to get rid of unless your sideboard is prepared for it, because chances are you weren’t really running main deck enchantment removal unless your goal was specifically designed to contend with it. Creatures on the other hand, players were most likely prepared for. This is reminiscent of the Affinity days when Mirrodin was in standard play, either you played with Affinity or you played against Affinity.

Now as I was saying, with the banning of Survival of the Fittest last year in December it really opened up this void in Legacy, one where now anything is possible. Be that as it may, are High Tide combo decks going to be the next big thing? Doubtful to be honest, I think more or less we are going to see more aggro-control decks coming out foremost in the format, so as to contend with combo and aggro style decks.

Drew Levin a writer for Star City Games and Legacy theorist wrote an interesting article today on How to beat everything for the next month. The article is a fantastic analysis of theory and strategy, concerning the current format. If you really want to read a mastermind on the subject I highly suggest you check out his latest article here. As for the most part, the importance of learning your local meta is still a very relevant matter, I know now in my own, landstill, 43 lands, and combo seem to be the decks of choice. So like all players preparation is the key to our game. knowing your decks, and the decks you will face is such an important factor to our metagame. To use a catch phrase from Canadian Podcasters The Eh Teams KYT “Everyone was metagaming against each other” truer words can never be spoken about this game.

Have a good weekend everyone!

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