@brass-man Eh, I pointed out that if you say it's a two deck metagame and every deck is either a 4 Force or 4 Sphere deck, you actually cover one more deck in the top 32 of that week's challenge. So might as well argue for the restriction of Force. Didn't actually mean for that to happen...Probably wise not to read the rest of the thread.
Anyways, I'm getting tired of arguing about the health of the format. I think the death of paper Vintage is happening now because of the inertia that the high price of cards creates. Players end up heavily invested in the format, Wizards prints cards and the format changes, and those players are stuck playing a format they don't enjoy. At the same time, the high cost of entry keeps players who would enjoy the format from buying in.
Vintage has changed in the 6 years I've played. Instead of prison decks being the dominant Shops strategy, you have Ravager Shops. Instead of Mana Drain control decks, you have the Delve spells powering Blue tempo strategies. The format right now is skewed heavily towards aggro, tempo, and combo, leaving control/prison players wanting to essentially nuke the format with restrictions to every archetype. But it's only going to get worse because cards are restricted and not banned and Wizards currently designs cards that Vintage players consider to be "un-Vintage-y". I mean, it feels like most of this recent spoiler season was spent bitching about Lavinia and how hate is designed. No one except for me (and @fsecco) even thought Cindervines was good. They just wanted to complain because it was asymmetrical.
From what I can tell, it's taken its toll on paper Vintage. I used to go to local tournaments that were 32+ people and now I hear those tournaments are less than 16. Some of that is Old School and that makes sense - Old School is a format that allows players to play the decks they used to enjoy. At the same time, MTGO Vintage is going strong, despite the uncertainty of Arena. The challenge last week was 7 rounds, the league consistently stabilizes at over 100 players. I see interest in Vintage streams and hear about new players buying in because the prices are so low. It's two different environments, and that's the root of the problem.