Return to Ravnica Metagame – Week 1

The Nagoya Grand Prix is now less than two months away (about 55 days I believe), and the first week of the metagame is complete. As I promised, I’ll be posting updates about what decks people have been using each week up until the event so people can prepare and use the information what decks to run. I apologize for not posting all of the results, but due to my games going on for a long time, I didn’t have a chance to walk around and see everybody’s deck.

I used my GW Life game deck for most of the first week, and got these results:

Friday, 10/5, Card Brunch Kanayama – WB tokens (lost 1-0-1), UW Favorable Spirits (tied), Door to Nothingness (rogue. Won 2-1), UWR midrange – winner

UWR Midrange was the winner of the event, and I went 1-1-1. My first opponent was a WB Token deck and was a challenge to beat. The loss of Ratchet Bomb has greatly reduced my options for mass removal, and having to rely on Terminus can be tricky because it gets rid of my creatures as well. With Sorin in play, it becomes even more difficult to play against. The same could be said about UW Tokens with Favorable Winds, which I tied. There are still some windows of opportunity in the deck, and if they play slow there is a chance to stay in the game, but it does rely a lot on drawing Terminus and disenchantment spells. My last opponent was playing with a Rogue Door to Nothingness/Fog deck and actually beat me once, but one trick ponies can easily be taken out with a spell. I managed 2 more wins afterwards.

Sunday, 10/7, Big Magic – WG aggro (lost 0-3 on a play error. Should have attacked with everybody. Make sure to side in at least one Natural End for O-rings), grixis control, BR control (lost 1-2. Need more removal. Maybe another Selesnya Charm in the side board?), BG zombies x3, BR aggro (lost 1-2. Kept bad hands. Don’t keep bad mana hands), Bant control (tie 1-1-1, need another O-ring and Chalice for control match ups), UWR midrange WINNER!

I went 0-3-1 in my first real tournament at Big Magic, and left in my personal advice because I think it would be useful if you play against it as well. My first opponent was playing WG Aggro, and it was absolutely nasty. He was playing with Strangleroot Geists, Loxodon Smiters, and he could hit extremely hard. I actually stabilized one game and had the chance to win, but didn’t attack with everybody which caused my loss. As you can see, there were also a lot of BG Zombie decks. I only counted 3, but there could have been a few more. It was really popular. On the other side of the coin, there were also quite a few control decks being played. Bonfire of the Damned and Mutilate makes it hard for aggro decks to stay on the board, and there is usually no late game against it when they have all their mana and plenty of kill spells in hand.

I realized this weekend that Selesnya Charm is EXTREMELY powerful in constructed and that I should be playing 4 of them main in an aggro deck.
Monday, 10/8, Card Brunch – BR zombies (lost 0-2), GR Werewolves (lost 0-2), esper control (lost 0-2), UWR midrange WINNER!, JUND control

Another horrible day for my GW lifegain aggro deck. It’s just too slow and not hitting the right mana. I think I’m going to stop using it for a while until I can get a few more Temple Gardens and some more power cards like Thragtusk and Armada Wurm. I don’t know how many times Trostani could have saved me if I had some tokens in play to populate. The person who won the last 3 events at this weekend ALSO pulled off another win on Monday with UWR midrange. It’s incredibly powerful and puts a lot of threats on the board, making it difficult for control match up against. At the same time, Bonfire of the Damned severely punishes aggro players after a few turns.


Friday, 10/12, Mishimaya (used Burning Vengeance), UWR control (lost 0-2, RIP killed me early. – Played against Tsuboyama-san who is going to the RTR PTQ!), RUG kessig control (won 2-1.), UW Azorius mill control (won 2-1), WGB planeswalker token (lost 0-2, couldn’t deal enough damage to the planeswalkers.), GW tokens

I went 2-2 today with a Burning Vengeance deck and had a great time playing with it. The deck proved to have quite a lot of useful spells at its disposal and could shut down most of my opponents. I did see some Rest in Peace and Detention Spheres played against me, but that’s why I put in Ray of Revelation. I lost to UWR control, but won against a UW Azorius mill control deck. Both were using those cards, the difference was in one game I drew a Ray of Revelation and destroyed RIP, then flashed it back to destroy the Detention Sphere, and then cast a bunch of cards and burned my opponent out.

I also played against a RUG Kessig Control deck that had cards like Tamiyo and Temporal Mastery, but the player was kind of sloppy and didn’t play it to it’s full potential I think. One of the great combos I saw was in my win against UW Azorius Mill. The player was using a Rest in Peace/Mind Sculpt combo against me in the second game and it hurt A LOT. All of my flashback cards sailed peacefully into oblivion whenever he used that combo. He did it in the third game as well, but luckily I found a Ray of Revelation and finished him with it.

Again, I saw a lot of tokens up here at Mishimaya, and one of them was playing a WGB Token deck that felt a lot like the Junk Walker deck I remembered playing against that had cards like Elspel Tireth in it. This deck had 3 Planeswalkers: Ajani, Sorin, and Garruk. Garruk and Sorin would put tokens in play, then Ajani would add a counter or send them flying. With only one Vengeance in play, I found it difficult to play against this type of deck. I think Grixis control would be great against it though. Cast a Mutilate to take care of the creatures, then Dreadbore the Planeswalkers.

Wrap Up

Although my collection of decks is incomplete, it does look like Tokens and control were pretty popular the first week of the new Metagame. Zombies have been creeping upwards as well, and I think you’ll see more of them in the future.

If you’re interested in checking out the build of my Burning Vengeance deck, you can follow this link for the deck: https://thejapanhobbyist.com/2012/10/09/burning-with-a-vengeance/

It will lead to another link, but I will be using that link to post updates to the deck. One card I’m especially excited to try out in my Vengeance deck is Epic Experiement. Can’t wait to see how it plays out! Thanks for reading.

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