A-M Metagame

Posted in Event Coverage

By Randy Buehler

I spent much of the early rounds of Grand Prix Denver going through all the decklists, trying to categorize them and get a handle on the IBC metagame. The biggest thing I've concluded so far is that I have never seen a more balanced environment in the history of Magic. I've sorted the players with last names beginning with A through M so far, but I'm not sure I'll have time for the other half. Here's what I've got now, which is probably a statistically significant sample anyway:

Red-green beats appears to be the most popular archetype, but has only a slight lead over U-B-W control (aka Go-mar or No-mar), and blue-green beatdown decks that are splashing red for burn. None of these decks make up make up 15% of the field and collectively they are well under 50%. Also, if you throw in other control variants or other blue-green variants, then either of those two decks could be considered the most popular. Basically, you can't metagame this field. You've got to run a solid deck that's good against a wide variety of things and you've got to play it well. Not only are there an unprecedented variety of decks out there, but most of the matchups are close when you play them out too.

I've done my best to categorize these in useful ways, but I'm sure there are several alternative categorizations that would make at least as much sense. On the bright side, there's a lot of data here if you know how to mine it.

Red-Green beats - 31
RG beats 3
Blue-based control - 61
U-B-W 26
U-B-R 17
U-W-R 10
U-B-G 6
U-G-R 2
U-R 3
Blue-Green tempo decks - 35
U-G-r 24
U-G-b 5
U-G (no splash) 6
Assorted Aggro - 52
U-W-R 11 (Several players ran this based on day 1 Kobe results)
U-W-B 5 This is really just Solution with some black spells
Solution 15  
G-W-U Hippo 10  
R-U-B 2  
W-G-R 3  
W-G-B 3  
W-G 1  
Ceta-Storm 2 These were Meteor Storm - Ceta Sanctuary decks
Three Color Good Stuff Decks - 36
W-B-G 13
W-B-R 15
R-G-B 8
4-Color Good Stuff 4 (3 different colors were left out between the 4)
Domain 8 Legacy Weapon was in all but 1 of these.
5-color Call 3  
Turbo-Obliterate 2  
R-B 8  
U-B 1  
B-W 3  
Red-White Goblins (!) 1  

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