Running the Pro Tour Gauntlet

Posted in Magic Digital on February 10, 2016

By Kenji Egashira

Better known as NumotTheNummy, Kenji is a lover of all things Magic. A "legendary streamer," you can almost always find him playing Magic Online over at his Twitch channel. When he's not playing Magic, Kenji enjoys long walks on the beach, romantic comedies, and devouring the hopes and dreams of the innocent.

Hello friends! My name is Kenji Egashira, perhaps some of you may know me as NumotTheNummy, and I'm here for my very first official article here on DailyMTG. I'm excited to say that I am debuting a new experience for people interested in playing with the decks from Pro Tour Oath of the Gatewatch—the Pro Tour Gauntlet. It should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with me that I've created this article in video segments to show what you can expect from the Pro Tour Gauntlet. This video should help clarify what you can expect from the experience.

If that wasn't clear enough, let me further explain. I've compiled a handful of decklists from the pros who went at least 7-3 and will be playing them, card for card, against other Modern decks. On Magic Online, YOU will be given the opportunity to play with some of these decks in this new queue called the Pro Tour Gauntlet. Even though the Gauntlet wasn't out when I recorded these videos (it starts today!), I tried to replicate the experience as closely as possible just to see how fun it might be.

The verdict?

It was a blast!

Even if you didn't get to watch the Pro Tour or don't know anything about the decks that were used, the Pro Tour Gauntlet is an amazing way to play with several successful, high-caliber decks. I won't bore you with explanations; I know you want to see some of these decks in action, so let's get to it.

First up, Luis Scott-Vargas's Colorless Eldrazi:

Next, Joel Larsson's Death's Shadow Aggro:

Patrick Dickmann's take on the classic Affinity:

And finally, the Pro Tour–winning Blue-Red Eldrazi deck from Jiachen Tao:

I am not a player of the same caliber as those who were piloting these decks at Pro Tour Oath of the Gatewatch, but WOW! Being able to play a variety of the very best decks from a Modern Pro Tour is exciting and provides for a variety of new play styles I assume many players haven't had the chance to experience. The Pro Tour Gauntlet is going to allow people interested in Magic to get a taste of what some of the brilliant minds are brewing and playing, in an event that only happens a few times a year.

Just to recap, I played four of the decks that did well in the Modern portion of the tournament. Starting with the Eldrazi list that Luis Scott-Vargas used to Top 8, I moved my way to a more all-in strategy with Joel Larsson's take on the aggressive Death's Shadow deck. After thoroughly walloping my opponent with a huge Death's Shadow, I tried out another one of the Top 8 lists: the classic Affinity. Having attached an odd device to my head multiple times, I was able to vanquish the foe with relative ease. Lastly, I absolutely had to play the awesome and innovative Blue-Red Eldrazi deck that Jiachen Tao piloted all the way through to a Pro Tour victory. Again, another thrilling match.

For those of you at home, I highly recommend giving the Pro Tour Gauntlet a shot. It's an easy way to play with some of the best decks to come out of this Modern Pro Tour, which was shaken up by a variety of recent bannings and the addition of a new set. This is unlike anything Magic Online has offered before, and I suspect that it will become a staple of queue choices for successive high-level events. Whereas one used to have to collect all the cards needed to play a deck, these Pro Tour Gauntlet events let you play against other competitive decks without owning any of the cards.

Magic is the best game in the world, full stop. When you're able to play in ways that you couldn't before, it opens amazing opportunities for something that you could only have dreamed of. I have always wanted to play on the Pro Tour, and I have definitely come close to qualifying, but now my determination to reach that goal is pushed even further. The Pro Tour Gauntlet is not only an experience, but a tool, one that people can use while striving for that next step in their Magic career. I know I will use it!

I hope you all have enjoyed this brief glance at the types of things you can expect from the Pro Tour Gauntlet. Thank you for taking the time to watch these videos and read my first DailyMTG article. Until next time!

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