– Naya Humans Wins Standard Open
– Jund Wins Legacy Open
– Simic and Boros Gatecrash Event Decklists Released (Thragtusk, Clifftop Retreat, Thalia, Silverblade Paladin)
– Geist of Saint Traft attacks for 6 again
While Gatecrash didn’t make any huge waves at the first large Standard event since release, there are still a number of interesting developments. Many decks from the previous format received slight upgrades in mana thanks to the additional five Shocklands, particularly Jund Midrange, which swarmed all over the top 16. Tyler Lindsey’s 4th place Jund Aggro deck is a more novel take on the RGB color combination, with Experiment One, a multitude of Haste creatures, and some Deathrite Shamans thrown in because why not.
In 3rd place is Andrew Schneider, with the Boros Deck that everyone expected to be coming. It is essentially mono-red splashing Boros Charm, with Boros Reckoner doing a lot of work at the 3cmc slot. One of the early breakout cards from Gatecrash, Reckoner quickly shot from $3 to $10 and is seen as Red’s solution to Thragtusk (along with Skullcrack to pick up the slack against Sphinx’s Revelation).
We also see a more defensive version of UWR Flash, with maindeck Jace, Memory Adept, Drogskol Reaver, and Supreme Verdict. So much for the Flash part of the deck! Geist of Saint Traft is relegated to the sideboard, as he is much weaker when your opponent has creatures (which they tend to do in early formats). Also on the Blue end of the spectrum is Eddie Walker’s Esper Spirits deck, which tops out with Obzedat, Ghost Council. The deck is essentially all creatures and removal, with Blind Obedience working quite nicely with Geist of Saint Traft.
Speaking of Blue one deck that didn’t have much of a showing was the Bant Hexproof deck that appeared at GP: Atlantic City a few weeks ago. One of the things that severely hindered the deck was it’s terrible mana, which would improve a great deal with the addition of Breeding Pool, so it’s a bit surprising that it was almost a complete no-show at this tournament.
As for the winning deck, Joseph Herrera took a modified version of the Naya Humans deck that was beginning to dominate at the end of last season to first place. Along with improved mana, Herrera added some Frontline Medics and Boros Charms to fight those pesky UW players, and smashed his way through the field.
On the Legacy end, we see a top 8 of three Jund decks, Charbelcher, Show and Tell, Miracles, Merfolk, and Stoneblade. Tony Chu, normally a Stoneblade player, made the switch over to Punishing Fire Jund for this tournament. Punishing Fire hasn’t seen much play in Jund lists yet, but it’s extremely powerful in the BGx mirror, where you are focused on grinding your opponent out, and less worried about dying on turn 2. Tony had a few more one-ofs than his fellow compatriots, but all three Jund lists were quite similar. Meanwhile, Show and Tell and Charbelcher did their best to punish the Punishing Fire players for being too focused on the fair decks, but ultimately they both fell short.
Meanwhile, team Force of Will was still well-represented by our three Blue players (although you could argue Merfolk is a traitor). We had a Rest in Peace Miracles player in 6th place – Rest in Peace is quite powerful against the BGx decks, and this was backed up by a Blood Moon that can lock them out entirely from casting spells (though the Jund decks have begun playing a few basics) and an Elspeth, Knight-Errant. Liliana of the Veil can be quite difficult for the Counterbalance decks to deal with, but Elspeth is able to take her down without much effort. The Merfolk and Stoneblade lists were mostly what we’ve come to expect from those decks.
Seriously, someone please bring Storm back to the format and kill all these people durdling around with Deathrite Shaman.
Moving on from tournament results, the decklists of the two Gatecrash Event Decks were published. If you still need Thragtusks, here’s a solid opportunity for you!
The rares in each deck are as follows:
Thrive and Thrash: Deadeye Navigator, Dungeon Geists, Gruul Ragebeast, Sphinx of Uthuun, Thragtusk, Wolfir Silverheart, Yeva, Nature’s Herald (also 3 each of Rancor, Strangleroot Geist, and 4 Farseek)
Rally and Route: Clifftop Retreat, Slayers’ Stronghold, Ash Zealot, Champion of the Parish, Silverblade Paladin, Spark Trooper, Thalia, Guardian of Thraben (also 2 Boros Charm, 4 Pillar of Flame, 2 Skullcrack, 4 Boros Elite)
Finally, with the newest Missed Trigger update, cards work the way they’re supposed to again! You can read about the changes in more depth on the mothership, but for now, rest easy knowing that Geist of Saint Traft will no longer fail to bring an angel with him into combat.