Chapter 15 (of 25) is now live. http://www.eternalcentral.com/schools-of-magic-history-of-vintage-2007/
Blurb: The Vintage format pivoted from the Gifts and Pitch Long era headlong in to a new Gush metagame in 2007. Dive into this exciting chapter in the History of Vintage to observe the metagame changes resulting from new sets, the tournament successes that propelled the format forward, and the unexpected twists and turns in the evolution of the great Schools of Magic.
This chapter is an important one, as every five years in the series (Chapter 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25), I recap and reiterate the thesis with a large historical table of decks and "schools" of Vintage/Type 1 Magic that includes each School's key elements and representations over time.
Chapter 10 was published in 2013, and since then, my thinking has evolved considerably with respect to School "classification" in one critical respect. The Five Major Schools remain the same, but I've reclassified Hatebears/Fish decks. It seems quite evident that they are not Comer School/TurboXerox decks. They don't use cantrips to bend down their mana curve, nor bend their mana curve down appreciably. They do use tempo threats and blue countermagic, but that doesn't make them TX decks.
I queried you all (readers) about this back in 2013 (see this thread), but after considerably thought and reflection, I've decided that Hatebears/Fish/Merfolk are actually descendents of the Lestree School. That may seem odd at first, but if you go back to the late 1990s, and look at the "Monkey, May I?" deck, and then only slightly later, the Miner/Monkey decks circa '97/98, this classification makes much more sense. Gorilla Shaman was incorporated into the Lestree decks as soon as it was printed, but it suffered from being really the only "utility" or disruptive creature until Dwarvin Miner saw print. In some respects, the UR Fish decks of 2004 look more like the Miner/Monkey decks then modern Fish decks, despite the re-centering of the archetype around Null Rod. So, it's not a perfect fit, but I think this reclassification makes more sense than calling the "Lestree School" "dead." I'd simply say that it's evolution, precipitated by the printing of far more utility creatures, has just been more pronounced away from it's origins. It's still the format's premier aggro deck (Reanimator is neither aggro nor combo, according to my classification scheme).
In any respect, the explanation for this shift is described in more detail in this chapter and the next one. But, when the book is complete, I will go back into the earlier chapters and edit/revise the large tables to reflect this reclassification.
Chapters 16, 17, and 18 are in the 'can' and under editing right now, so they should be published in relatively short succession, and the rest of the series, Chapters 19-25, are completely outlined at this point. Once done, I'll probably add a special "conclusion" section for the book.
In between the release of these chapters, I have in mind at least two "free" articles or "Schools of Magic: History of Vintage Special Reports." The first is on the history of the SCG series. This is done, but being spruced up for publication. I'll probably publish this during the holidays to market the chapters. And I'll probably do one or two other "freebies," including, perhaps, a history of the Vintage Championship and maybe a "top 10" coolest Vintage decks of all time list.
I look forward to your feedback, but I think people are really going to only appreciate this work once it's complete The end is in sight!