Old Tom Bombadil is a merry fellow,
bright blue his jacket is, and his boots are yellow.
Kefnet + JTMS + Ancestral / Time Walk.
Sounds like three wishes already resolved
Kefnet reminds me a bit of Kess. But it has the better mana requirements, a bigger body, the cost reduction part and it doesn't remove the used spells . Both just function under certain conditions (instant/sorcery on top/graveyard). So Kefnet seem to be a clear improvement. And while Kess just randomly saw play, I could see this appear a bit more often.
This card is broken. Removes Stony/Rod and stops all counterspells.
I think, this is one reason that makes it a good choice for PO, probably better than for other decks. You can remove problematic permanents- Lavinia as well - AND draw a card, stop counterspells during the turn you are going off, play broken stuff like Demonic Tutor, Walk, Tinker (into Bolas‘ Citadel) and even Preordain and Night‘ Whisper during end step and bounce it with PO. Very flexible tool for this setting.
I definitely play some Pithing Needles in the board in the moment, as they work quite effectively against Dredge and Survivial. Shutting down Bazaar has become more powerful against Dredge since they play Hollow Ones und Anglers out of the board as well. And the abbility to hit both, Surivival and Bazaar, make them a good choice against Survival as well. I would then combine them with a mix of answers depending on when they can effect the game state (from turn 0 to turn 2).
... and like 4-8 decks capable of winning any tournament (Survival, PO, Dredge, Oath, BUG(r), Xerox, Shops, WEldrazi).
I agree with smmenen too, alone the quoted diversity of deck types is something we didn't have for a long time, without dominance of one of them and with a broad strategic diversity.
Maybe we can develop the meta a bit further by unrestrictions to establish additional deck types. Fastbond comes to my mind, which could boost Lands/Depth/Loam style decks, but there might be other possibilities.
Thanks a lot for the overview. One thing: I think Rich wants Sphere of Resistance to be restricted, not Damping Sphere. Maybe some sort of confusion happend in the interview. I for sure cant talk for him, but this seems to make more sense (and I would agree with him, even though I would opt for Foundry Inspector over Revoker). Maybe he can clear this up at some point.
Running 5-7 "dead cards" (Missteps/Flusters/Pyros) is a constraint the current metagame.Yes players can opt to run Oath to beat Shops, but you cannot cut those "dead cards" and expect of have prolonged success in the Vintage metagame. At least not in Blue.
I would go further: Many of the actual blue decks (especially the ones based on Preordain) do run even more "dead" cards like Swords to Plowshares, Fragmentize, Lightning Bolt, Abrade in the maindeck, which are useful against Shops but more less bricks in the hand against other matchups like Storm, Paradoxical, Dredge, Landstill ... But I don't see all of them as dead anymore as the filtering ability of blue decks has improved a lot. There is almost no blue deck out there, which doesn't run Mindsculptor, Dack or Baby Jace - beside Brainstorm. So, don't you have to run the most efficient tools in certain matchups preboard when you can easily exchange them against others?
There are decks with Mana Drain that never stopped being played and which are competitive in the moment: Grixis and Landstill. Both had nice results lately. I especially like how some Grixis builds have moved away from the complete artifact acceleration and now just play the Moxen - still with Tinker, but with the whole cantrip engine and relying stronger on Mana Drain to play more costy stuff like Jace.