The August 31, 2016 Update

Posted in Daily Magic Update on August 31, 2016

By Blake Rasmussen

Blake is the content manager for, making him the one you should email if you have thoughts on the website, good or less good (or not good). He's a longtime coverage reporter and hasn't turned down a game of Magic in any format ever.

The Daily Magic Update is a roundup of everything Magic you should know on August 31, 2016. Today's Update is brought to you by Announcement Day! Happy Announcement Day!

What People Are Talking About

Yay! It's Announcement Day! We announced a slate of new products coming in 2017, including our next block, Amonkhet, and the return of Nicol Bolas! And, as a bonus, there's a video introducing all of these products as well as our new president, Chris Cocks!

Plus, you get the Nate Price Nicol Bolas voice. It's like a bonus within a bonus!

Spoiler alert, I guess? Oh, too late? Well, then how about we just congratulate Eric Froehlich on winning the Vintage Super League last night over Shuhei Nakamura thanks in large part to a bunch of 2/2s for two.

If you missed it and want to see how the action played out, the finals are up on YouTube right about—here. Wait, you went too far. Just missed the link. If you go back and get to "about," you've gone too far again.

Extra Life Update

  1. Extra Life Charity Event Needs Your Questions!

Magic is participating in the Extra Life charity this year! Extra Life partners with the Children's Miracle Network of hospitals every year, and Magic will be taking donation for Seattle Children's.

With each donation we take, you'll get the chance to ask a question to one of Magic's designer's, including Magic creator Richard Garfield, lead designer Mark Rosewater, creative team members Mel Li and Kelly Digges, and developer Ian Duke!

We'll take questions until September 5, so get your donations in quickly for this amazing cause!

Today's Must

  1. Top 5 | ChannelFireball | Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa

PVDDR's Top 5 articles are fantastic. Part listicle, part mind-spew, part look inside the Brazilian great's head, part commentary on being a Brazilian who travels to America a lot; this article is tons of fun, informative (at times), and just plain interesting to read.

Also, the horrific/terrific thing blew my mind. I never thought of it that way before.

After Those, Read, Watch, or Listen to These

  1. Kimberly Kreines | Gathering Magic | Snack Time with Mike and Ant | Mike Linnemann and Ant Tessitore

If you saw the Announcement Day video above, then you can see why creative Kimberly Kreines is a fantastic guest when you want to talk about story and flavor.

  1. Conspiracy: Take the Crown with Shawn Main Part 2 | Commanderin' MTG | Phil DeLuca, Nate Burgess, and Sean Whatson

2 Shawn 2 Conspiracy.

Shawn Main was the lead designer of Conspiracy: Take the Crown, and he's back for the second part of his interview with the Commanderin' crowd. Only now with The Rock. Dwayne Johnson makes everything better.

  1. Commander VS: Run It Back! | | Justin Parnell and Stephen Green

If at first you don't succeed, try, try to smash your opponent's face again. At least that's what the Commander VS crew is going for this week, as they run back some of their favorite decks that didn't win. At least this time, someone has to.

  1. Conspiracy: Take the Crown—Top 10 Commander Cards | MTGGoldfish | SaffronOlive

Nope, we're still not done with Conspiracy. We might be on the Announcement Day hype train, and the Kaladesh kick-off might be just a few short days away, but that doesn't mean we're done dissecting Conspiracy: Take the Crown yet. As a multiplayer set, there are definitely a few spicy cards for Commander strewn throughout, and SaffronOlive covers his take on the Top 10 of them.

Community Spotlight


A new Magic stats player has entered the game with, a site that uses Elo ratings to rank pros since Pro Tour Magic 2015, looking only at Grand Prix, Pro Tours, and World Championships during that time span. The current top three in these rankings are Luis Scott-Vargas, Owen Turtenwald, and Pro Tour Eldritch Moon Champion Lukas Blohon. Elo is an interesting deviation from Pro Points, because it doesn't reward volume the same way Pro Points do. So, for example, Gerry Thompson hasn't been on the official Top 25 for some time, but he's sixteenth on this site's Elo rating.

If you're a stat-head, or just love the Pro Tour, check it out.

Deck of the Day

  1. Thing Ascension

We saw a little bit of this mashup during the Modern Grand Prix weekend last week, but it looks like a few Magic Online users—including SKOUNIS—took notice and took it to the 5-0 room in a Modern Competitive League (note: the 5-0 room is not an actual room or place or anything that exists outside my head).

It's a mashup of the Pyromancer Ascension combo decks and, well, Thing in the Ice. Which makes sense. Pyromancer Ascension always relied a little too heavily on getting its namesake into play, and adding Thing in the Ice gives it another payoff card for all of those spells being played. And with Affinity, Death's Shadow Aggro, Infect, and any number of creature strategies sitting at or near the top of the metagame, Thing in the Ice is a significant stumbling block for a lot of top decks.

SKOUNIS's Thing Ascension

Download Arena Decklist

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