Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017



  • 46 players participated in yesterday's Vintage Challenge on MTGO. Congratulations to Jazza on his win!

    Top Finishes

    1. Jazza - Ravager Shops (precursor over wire)
    2. Smmenen - Jeskai Mentor
    3. Pascal3000 - Jeskai Mentor
    4. Dan9IN - Ravager Shops (wire)
    5. espiatrianero - White Eldrazi
    6. whateverfor - Jeskai Mentor
    7. desolutionist - Gifts Drain Tendrils
    8. Ponagger - Ravager Shops (precursor over wire)

    Top 32 Decklists

    Metagame

    The spreadsheet can be found here.

    Quick observations

    Shops and mentor again made up the majority of the top 8, which I am sure everyone who posts on these threads will be thrilled with. Note that almost all the shops decks in the top32 omitted tangle wire; it will be interesting to see what the shops decks which do well at NYSE next week look like.

    Thanks to @ChubbyRain for his help with these reports.



  • Thanks for the hard work as always gentleman.



  • PO decks made up nearly 30% of the meta, yet none made top 8? Am I reading that correctly?



  • @Serracollector yep. You are reading that correctly. Pretty bad day for the outcome decks.


  • TMD Supporter

    There's only room for good 3U spells in top 8. 😁



  • @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    There's only room for good 3U spells in top 8. 😁

    I feel like both Gifts Ungiven and Fact or Fiction are better than Outcome, but not many people have worked the shell.


  • TMD Supporter

    This post is deleted!

  • TMD Supporter

    God what a great top 8. Such diversity. What a great format.

    Can we PLEASE stop saying the post-4/24 format is still evolving/unfolding/figuring itself out? This is a completely solved format, and it's miserable. Possibly the worst I've ever seen.

    #ThanksDCI.



  • @Smmenen Well, on the plus side, at least you can win matches of Magic in this new format...


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen

    The format is far from solved. Gush has been the main ingredient in Vintage for the past 4 years, and so how is it solved by 30 people in just over a month? You're insane.

    edit*

    And there are new printings every year that seem to change it up. I just cannot relate to your opinion.


  • TMD Supporter

    I just want to echo the sentiment of thanking both of you for this speedy information. Now that it's weekly, it's quite the commitment!!! I have no doubts the debates will carry on, it's still a great service you are providing.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    And there are new printings every year that seem to change it up. I just cannot relate to your opinion.

    I think this is the bigger picture that everyone seems to be missing. In the past, we'd be lucky to get 1-2 cards PER BLOCK that were playable, and most were marginally better than what we already had. These days, linchpin cards for tier 1 decks are being created every set, along with major support/sideboard cards. There are a dozen+ cards per set worth looking at, and handfuls are making their ways into the permanent rotation. This might be a result of creatures in Vintage, but it seems like every set, while not creating new archetypes necessarily, is certainly bringing the goods.

    The debate might shift to whether these cards have us racing towards critical mass, instead of creating new decks. These cards are optimizing Vintage, not necessarily changing Vintage. Take shops for instance. Almost every creature in the deck is a new-border creature.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist are you blind?

    There have been six challenges since 4/24 with hundreds of players and the results are in. These top 8s are less diverse and more polarized between Mentor and Thorn than before the restrictions. 7 of the top 8 decks here are Mentor or Thorn.

    Exactly everything the DCI said they were trying to do has happened, except the exact opposite and in reverse.

    How do you restrict two cards and get the same or worse results?

    What a disaster...



  • @Smmenen Maybe I am missing something but it seems like the top 8 numbers in totality since the changes have been made are absurdly good for mentor and shops. Personally I was glad that probe got hit and I wasn't a huge fan of gush because I like to be stupid with wastelands but they definitely have not made the two best decks any less good. I have played a few different decks lately and my general thought against paradoxical outcome regardless of my deck is yay! Where when I am up against mentor it is shit!



  • @Smmenen

    1. We've had a handful of events that would be considered tiny in relation to any other format. Many prereleases and FNMs are larger than these challenges. Wizards gets more data about the state of Standard in a week than Vintage gets in a year. The entire point of this exercise is to track changes in the format over time and aggregate the results, because anyone with a basic understanding of statistics knows that sample size is critical to making empirical judgements about complex systems. I don't know if you are being willfully ignorant or you're still going through the bereavement process - either way, it's getting tiresome to deal with this week to week.

    2. Innovation in Vintage is driven by a handful of competent brewers. The list you played in this event had some minor tweaks from the version I used to win a Lotus three years ago (some were terrible...Chewer is mediocre and doesn't work well with JVP - it's no surprise Jazza trounced you). That list seems pretty obvious and standard now, but it took about a month of tuning to get it right and the reason I didn't play it in Champs (with 1-2 more Digs) that year was because I didn't feel it was ready. The Drain Tendrils list I used to win the Challenge a couple of weeks ago took about the same amount of time. I get that you used to take other people's decks, tweak a couple of cards, and call them "Meandeck whatever". That's not how Vintage works right now, and your poor performance in the later iterations of VSL is a result of that (God, that Dark Petition Oath deck was an abomination). Maybe some of this is unnecessarily mean, but the point is that Vintage has a considerable amount of inertia given the small player base, few number of innovators, time it takes to adequately tune a brew, and the large number of old hacks who don't understand the modern metagame, yet think they are still relevant.

    3. Final point and I apologize for the occasional use of caps for emphasis. However, I'm at a loss as you seem unable to comprehend what I think is a relatively simple concept. The MAJORITY OF VINTAGE PLAYERS IN VARIOUS POLLS agreed with you that Mentor should have been restricted. A SUBSTANTIAL PERCENTAGE felt Gush should also be restricted. This is completely beside the point, because NONE OF THE PEOPLE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE RESTRICTIONS ARE ON THIS WEBSITE. Posting here each week only serves to fuel your rampant narcissism and remind us what a self-absorbed ass you are. The DCI doesn't check this - they already have more complete results than we can collect. Your rants on this blog don't influence policy. Perhaps a better use of your time would be to churn out more Old School content or to get Paul to teach you some new sleight of hand... Hell, you could take over this data collection for us, because I'm really close to not bothering with this crap anymore.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    How do you restrict two cards and get the same or worse results?

    I mean when they restricted Dig through Time, it didn't change a whole lot either. You were even talking about it in your podcast; for Brian Kelly's winning deck, just cut 2 Dig through Time for a Treasure Cruise and a Planeswalker. Most Gush decks were only playing 3 Gush so obviously its a similar situation.

    My question is, why didn't you make such a fuss over the restriction of Dig through Time?


  • TMD Supporter

    First of all, that's the biggest bunch of angry venom I've seen here in a long time. In the good ole days, most of that post would be scrubbed as inflammatory, but since it's not, I'll response point by point.

    @ChubbyRain said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @Smmenen

    1. We've had a handful of events that would be considered tiny in relation to any other format. Many prereleases and FNMs are larger than these challenges. Wizards gets more data about the state of Standard in a week than Vintage gets in a year. The entire point of this exercise is to track changes in the format over time and aggregate the results, because anyone with a basic understanding of statistics knows that sample size is critical to making empirical judgements about complex systems.

    What do you think I'm doing? There have been 6 Challenges so far. if I were looking at just a single event, and "cherry picking" (your favorite phrase), then you would easily call me out on it.

    But I'm not. There is a clear trendline here. That's why I looked at all of the data together.

    This isn't a table that shows random data points. The data all show a stable pattern with a stable trendline. The metagame picture is clear. Shall I draw it for you?

    alt text

    Oh look! How funny is that!

    It's exactly what I predicted many months ago:

    alt text

    alt text

    Any dummy can look at those charts and tell that there is something discernible happening here. This isn't random data points. They are part of a clear pattern and direction. It's not "noise."

    I don't know if you are being willfully ignorant or you're still going through the bereavement process - either way, it's getting tiresome to deal with this week to week.

    Just like it was tiresome, for more than two years, to hear you complain about Gush over and over again. Deal with it.

    The DCI made two restrictions accompanied by an explanation that contained predictions that Mentor and Shops decks would decrease. Neither is happening. The data is showing us this. Pointing this out is a duty, to hold the DCI accountable, as well as the people who misled the DCI into thinking this would happen.

    People have a right to complain about the gross incompetence and mismanagement of the format.

    1. Innovation in Vintage is driven by a handful of competent brewers. The list you played in this event had some minor tweaks from the version I used to win a Lotus three years ago (some were terrible...Chewer is mediocre and doesn't work well with JVP - it's no surprise Jazza trounced you). That list seems pretty obvious and standard now, but it took about a month of tuning to get it right and the reason I didn't play it in Champs (with 1-2 more Digs) that year was because I didn't feel it was ready. The Drain Tendrils list I used to win the Challenge a couple of weeks ago took about the same amount of time. I get that you used to take other people's decks, tweak a couple of cards, and call them "Meandeck whatever". That's not how Vintage works right now, and your poor performance in the later iterations of VSL is a result of that (God, that Dark Petition Oath deck was an abomination). Maybe some of this is unnecessarily mean, but the point is that Vintage has a considerable amount of inertia given the small player base, few number of innovators, time it takes to adequately tune a brew, and the large number of old hacks who don't understand the modern metagame, yet think they are still relevant.

    Keep it classy, as always, Matt!

    I'm not sure what your point is here, except to spew vitriol, but suffice to say, Ingot Chewer is the only reason I was able to beat every other Shops/Eldrazi match I played in the rest of the tournament. My top 8 deck from April had 0 Ingot Chewer, and I lost to Jazza in the Top 8 of that tournament as well. I specifically switched to Ingot Chewer based upon testing that it improved my Shops (and Eldrazi) matchup. I don't know if you've noticed, but Mentor has been getting crushed by Jazza and other Shops players recently in these tournaments. The Mentor players aren't running an anti-Shops configuration that is capable of reliably competing, and Shops is the best deck in the format. Ingot Chewer was actually amazing against Jazza. I probably made some miscues against him, and it's possible that I could have won the match, but it wasn't because of Chewer. But Ingot Chewer was actually amazing. By Force is simply not reliable against Shop decks. That's dreamland for Mentor decks.

    As for "consistent brewers," I was one of the very first people in this format to play with Young Pyromancer (Rich and I both Top 8ed the same first tournament it was legal, but I played it in a 4 Gush deck, and he didn't). And I brewed one of the very first Mentor decks and won a local tournament in a shell that would pretty much resemble what later emerged, and also the very first to play Mentor on the VSL (along with DW, who played my deck). The shell I built is basically the shell that exists to this day, including the list that I played a 3rd place finish in the Asian Vintage Championship last year. I also won a bunch of local tournaments over the last few years with essentially the same deck, including one at the beginning of April.

    1. Final point and I apologize for the occasional use of caps for emphasis. However, I'm at a loss as you seem unable to comprehend what I think is a relatively simple concept. The MAJORITY OF VINTAGE PLAYERS IN VARIOUS POLLS agreed with you that Mentor should have been restricted. A SUBSTANTIAL PERCENTAGE felt Gush should also be restricted. This is completely beside the point, because NONE OF THE PEOPLE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE RESTRICTIONS ARE ON THIS WEBSITE.

    Oh please. That's completely BS, and everyone knows it.

    You bragged about relentlessly giving "feedback" to the DCI about Gush. If there is a single person responsible for incessantly whining, complaining, and rousing the rabble against Gush, it's you.

    You were the very first person to post on TMD (the previous version) that Gush should be re-restricted, and slowly pressed your case. Do you now deny arguing that Gush should be restricted?

    Because you were the chief person who misled them.

    Posting here each week only serves to fuel your rampant narcissism and remind us what a self-absorbed ass you are.

    Wow, pot meet kettle. You are the very stereotype of an angry nerd sitting behind his computer desk spewing venom. Get out more. Seriously.

    Absolutely nothing I said in this thread was narcissistic. Please, tell me what is narcissistic about this post:

    alt text

    You are delusionally reading things that aren't there.

    I didn't even mention my performance in this tournament, or self-congratulate myself. All that I said was the format is awful, and that the DCI's predictions about the format are failing to materialize; and in fact, the opposite is happening.

    The fact that you read my complaints about the format as self-absorption or narcissism is hilariously revealing about your own psyche.

    The DCI doesn't check this - they already have more complete results than we can collect. Your rants on this blog don't influence policy.

    Uh, we already know that members of R&D who communicate with the DCI do check this.

    Perhaps a better use of your time would be to churn out more Old School content or to get Paul to teach you some new sleight of hand... Hell, you could take over this data collection for us, because I'm really close to not bothering with this crap anymore.

    You already said "People have a right to be angry with and/or disagree with the DCI's decisions. It would be hypocritical of me to think otherwise."

    So stop being hypocritical, and don't complain about people's justifiable criticism.

    The restrictions of Gush and Probe were the wrong restrictions. The polarization you complained about has either persisted or gotten worse, and you are partly responsible for it. And, unfortunately, I have a feeling things are just going to get worse. Who knows where this train ends up, but it's not likely some place good! Probably more unnecessary restrictions.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    How do you restrict two cards and get the same or worse results?

    I mean when they restricted Dig through Time, it didn't change a whole lot either. You were even talking about it in your podcast; for Brian Kelly's winning deck, just cut 2 Dig through Time for a Treasure Cruise and a Planeswalker. Most Gush decks were only playing 3 Gush so obviously its a similar situation.

    My question is, why didn't you make such a fuss over the restriction of Dig through Time?

    Because Dig and Treasure Cruise deserved restriction.

    Gush didn't. Most Vintage players polled understood this.

    Gush made the format better and more interesting, and restricting Gush only made sense if you were a disgruntled Mana Drain pilot.

    The data tells the whole story. Mentor and Shops are, on average, above where they were before Gush's restriction. The DCI got it wrong.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    How do you restrict two cards and get the same or worse results?

    I mean when they restricted Dig through Time, it didn't change a whole lot either. You were even talking about it in your podcast; for Brian Kelly's winning deck, just cut 2 Dig through Time for a Treasure Cruise and a Planeswalker. Most Gush decks were only playing 3 Gush so obviously its a similar situation.

    My question is, why didn't you make such a fuss over the restriction of Dig through Time?

    Because Dig and Treasure Cruise deserved restriction.

    Gush didn't. Most Vintage players polled understood this.

    Gush made the format better and more interesting, and restricting Gush only made sense if you were a disgruntled Mana Drain pilot.

    I don't agree with more interesting. The Preordain Gush decks were so easy to pilot compared to the skill intensive decks of the past and present; Gifts is the most interesting to me. I grew tired of the Gush metagame but I stuck it out and tried to innovate the best I could; I played all kinds of decks ranging from Thought-Knot Gifts, to TNT, to Pack Rat Tendrils. That's the only appropriate response to a metagame that you don't like. To build something that you do like and play that.

    These decks that you don't like, Jeskai Mentor and Shops, are only over representing the top 8 because that's all that people are playing. The complete data is in that spreadsheet, there aren't any unique decks in there besides one or two. What do you expect? It's like putting a bunch of red and purple coins into a bag and hoping to draw a black one. Why don't you just put the black coin in the bag yourself and see what happens instead of complaining. It might even be fun who knows.


  • TMD Supporter

    @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @desolutionist said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    @Smmenen said in Vintage Challenge - 6/17/2017:

    How do you restrict two cards and get the same or worse results?

    I mean when they restricted Dig through Time, it didn't change a whole lot either. You were even talking about it in your podcast; for Brian Kelly's winning deck, just cut 2 Dig through Time for a Treasure Cruise and a Planeswalker. Most Gush decks were only playing 3 Gush so obviously its a similar situation.

    My question is, why didn't you make such a fuss over the restriction of Dig through Time?

    Because Dig and Treasure Cruise deserved restriction.

    Gush didn't. Most Vintage players polled understood this.

    Gush made the format better and more interesting, and restricting Gush only made sense if you were a disgruntled Mana Drain pilot.

    I don't agree with more interesting. The Preordain Gush decks were so easy to pilot compared to the skill intensive decks of the past and present; Gifts is the most interesting to me. I grew tired of the Gush metagame

    But it wasn't Gush that was the culprit, as we now see. It was the Delve draw engine and Mentor.

    These decks that you don't like, Jeskai Mentor and Shops,

    You misunderstand me. I like both Jeskai Mentor and Shops. The problem is that the format is worse now. The format is now more polarized between those decks, and the restrictions were an attempt to reduce that polarization.

    Look at the data in my previous post.

    It was an epic fail. The format is awful, and will be for a long time.

    The complete data is in that spreadsheet, there aren't any unique decks in there besides one or two. What do you expect? It's like putting a bunch of red and purple coins into a bag and hoping to draw a black one. Why don't you just put the black coin in the bag yourself and see what happens instead of complaining. It might even be fun who knows.

    Ask the same question to people who complained about Gush. They could have played a non-Gush deck. Why didn't they?

    The hypocrisy is overwhelming. @ChubbyRain complained incessantly about Gush, but anyone who complains about the format now is annoying! You break it, you buy it.


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