Vintage 101: The Octoberrific Metagame Report

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Howdy folks! It’s time yet again for another edition of Vintage 101! I’m your host, Joe Dyer, and this week we’re going to be diving into the current state of Vintage for the month and seeing where the metagame is at. In addition to that we’ve got both Challenges to talk about from this past weekend.

Before we jump into things, just a side note that next week’s article will be my last one for two weeks as I will be on vacation the first two weeks of November and won’t be in any position to be writing any content during that time. Rest assured, we’ll be back the following week of the 14th to talk about more Vintage!

Without further ado, let’s dive right in!

The October Metagame Update

It’s been another month of Vintage and since the advent of no changes from the Banned and Restricted announcement earlier this month, it seems like a great time to look at where the format sits. For this data, I’m utilizing the most recent Metagame Dashboard update by the Vintage Streamer’s Discord. I made a copy of this document and set the data to go back to 9/1/2022 for the purposes of this article. You can find this data here.

Let’s start by looking at the overall breakdown of metagame representation in the format since 9/1.

Tinker is definitely the most represented deck in this data set, at 14.9% of the metagame overall here. Breach follows next here and then down into Hogaak, Prison Shops/BUG, and on down the line. In terms of sheer numbers, while Tinker has a lot of representation, there’s actually quite a good amount of diversity in the format here with many represented archetypes across the spectrum. One deck at roughly 15% of the metagame isn’t really breaking the bank here, especially when we consider the win rate data, as we’ll now look at.

Despite being heavily played, Tinker’s overall win rates are below 50%. Much of this has to do with the fact of similar notions from the BnR announcement, that these decks have numerous different configurations and no one single Tinker configuration is the most popular. Things fluctuate between Esper and Grixis and even different configurations within those colors. The deck draws a lot of players that are motivated by the combination of good stuff cards for sure as well, but the deck does have a strong learning curve with it. In short, I think Tinker seems totally fine right now.

Breach on the next level down however while having 10.3% of the metagame share does have a 57.71% win rate which is quite strong. While a good number of the Breach deck strategy bleeds into Tinker to an extent, Breach is definitely much more of a combo strategy than a good stuff strategy like Tinker is, despite sharing a lot of similar cards. The builds are quite different, and the deck is definitely strong.

We can also see that Hogaak while popular has dipped a lot in win rate as well to 48.11% and down the rest of the format is a lot of up and downs around the 50% mark with a high uptick on 4C DRS decks at 57.36%. Much of the hubbub around 4C has been because of the power level of added new cards like Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes so it is easy to see why this has jumped up.

The fun thing about this is that we continue to see a picture of the Vintage format where it seems like there are a lot of viable deck strategies and a lot of really cool things to be doing. While cards like Urza’s Saga are ubiquitous and powerful enough, they are not causing the format to implode upon itself like we have seen in the past with various newer cards. Not only that, this is certainly a very cyclical format and the metagame is continually evolving with natural metagame forces, making for an interesting and dynamic format. This is one of the purest examples of metagame forces I’ve ever seen in a format, and I think that is pretty amazing to see. I look forward to continually checking out each month of Vintage here as the format looks incredibly fun right now.

Vintage Challenge 10/15

Our first Challenge event of the weekend was the mid-afternoon Saturday event. This event had 67 players in it thanks to the data collected by the Vintage Streamer’s Discord.

You can find all of the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Breach was very popular here and the win rate definitely matched up on it, however the Squee (HollowVine) decks also did very well as did Doomsday and 4C DRS decks.

Let’s take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
HollowVine 1st Firetruck
Breach 2nd handsomePPZ
Breach 3rd AFX
Jeskai Lurrus 4th unluckymonkey
Oath of Druids 5th Miharu_Fuyumiya
Doomsday 6th Enrichetta
Breach 7th Kinarus
Oath of Druids 8th ChainsOfMephiStopPlz

Quite a bit of Breach here as it did very well overall in the event, but at the end of the event it was HollowVine that took it all down.

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This user not only has a pretty strong list here, but also the best MTGO username. But seriously, this deck is very strong and very aggressive.

In Second Place we’ve got Breach.

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This rides the line into Tinker (and is often called Tinker Breach anyways) so it shares a lot of the similar hallmark pieces of the other Tinker decks.

Also in this Top 8 we had Oath of Druids by the master of Oath, Miharu.

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Always a real treat seeing Niv-Mizzet again in these variants. Card is incredibly cool and very strong.

Vintage Challenge 10/16

The second Challenge event of the weekend was the early morning Sunday event, which had 52 players in it thanks to the data collected by the Vintage Streamer’s Discord.

You can find all of the Top 32 decklists for this event here and the data sheet here.

Breach was exceedingly popular here and had a strong win rate based on the number of decks, which Blue Tempo builds also did well and Prison Shops.

Let’s take a look at the Top 8.

Deck Name Placing MTGO Username
Breach 1st duke12
Breach 2nd handomePPZ
Merfolk 3rd Mogged
GW Aggro 4th Wesal
Paradoxical Outcome 5th RespectTheCat
Breach 6th KingHairy
Hogaak 7th otakkun
Grixis Tinker 8th discoverN

Again, a lot of Tinker-centric strategies here, with the finals of the event being down to Breach v Breach with the winner on… Breach.

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Two very slightly different lists here with the First Place list placing a little more importance on Breach itself, but still very close in similarities. The winning list is also more in on Hullbreacher and no secondary Tinker target whereas the Second Place list has Sphinx main deck.

Also in this Top 8 we had Merfolk.

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Since the BnR calling out Vodalian Hexcatcher I think people have seriously fulfilled that prophecy slightly to see if the deck is any good, and it turns out it probably is actually pretty good! This list is pretty sweet. Tide Shaper seems very strong versus things like Bazaar or Workshops to shut that off, and Thieving Skydiver is super sick.

Around the Web

  • Bryant Cook is casting Tinker! Check it out here.
  • The content machine of Justin Gennari churns and churns! Check out this week’s videos:
  • Great video on Jewel Shops by chaotic_doc. Check it out here.
  • Another great video on Vintage Merfolk! Check it out here.
  • Revenantkioku also has some videos for us this week:

The Spice Corner

You can find this past week’s 5-0 lists here.

UG Snowko Oath!

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Wrapping Up

That’s all the time we have this week folks! Thanks for your continued support of the column and join me next week as we continue our journey into Vintage!

As always you can reach me at my Link Tree! In addition you can always reach me on the MTGGoldfish Discord Server and the Vintage Streamers Discord.

Until next time!