Stipulation Cube – The Community Sets the Pace

Posted in 2015 MAGIC COMMUNITY CUP on September 19, 2015

By Nate Price

A longtime member of the Pro Tour and Grand Prix coverage staff, Nate Price now works making beautiful words for all of you lovely people as the community manager for organized play. When not covering events, he lords over the @MagicProTour Twitter account, ruling with an iron fist.

The leading event of the 2015 Community Cup is one of the most-beloved formats in the event’s history: Stipulation Cube. For this event, each player on the two teams is given a rule to which they must adhere over the course of their draft. These rules can be anything from drafting lands before spells to drafting the card that sounds the most like the name of a cooking show. This year’s list of Stipulations, and the players saddled with them, can be found here.

The real standout from the draft were Anthony "Wedge" D'Aconto's Disaster deck. His stipulation required him to take the card that best fit the theme of a disaster movie, and he really went deep on it.

"I had a whole story lined up. I would Raise the Alarm and Gather the Townsfolk. Then, Paul Giamatti runs into the scene. ‘It's coming! You've got to evacuate,' he would yell, but no one would heed this Sea Gate Oracle's warning. In the end, there would be Upheaval, and all of the townsfolk that refused to listen to him would be washed away to their doom, while he would escape safely to my hand."

Here's what his final deck looked like:

"This is the most fun I'm ever going to have losing a match of Magic," Wedge said after two rounds of losses.

His teammate, Magic: The Amateuring's Maria Bartholdi, was having much better luck.

After defeating Melissa DeTora in her first round, she would go on to later defeat Aaron Forsythe to go 2-1, while her podcasting compatriot Meghan Wolff would go undefeated. It was impressive to see that she was able to pick up three consecutive W's given that she wasn't allowed any in her deck.

After seeing a series of deck photos that had glare or illegible cards, pro David Williams began getting the #picpolice online to critique those photos. This drew out the inner troll in the Wizards team, as they began to submit their "decklists" to him for approval.

There were some fairly intense moments throughout the round, most of them involving MTGOverlord Worth Wollpert.

First, against Wedge, he managed to not only repeal a Marit Lage that had come into play thanks to Dark Depths and Thespian's Stage.

Then, as Wedge tried to Maelstrom Pulse his own Demonic Pact the turn before it killed him, Worth had a pair of counterspells to ensure that Wedge died an appropriately disastrous death.

Then, against Jimmy Wong in the final round, Wong's Nissa, Vastwood Seer, was stolen by a Control Magic. The duplicitous elf soon came to her senses, though, as Wollpert played a land, causing Nissa to transform, returning to Wong's side of the board. Later on in that match, after Wong had made a crucial misclick, Wollpert punted right back, accidentally using his Karn Liberated to kill his own Tamiyo, the Moon Sage. Cries of justice echoed throughout the room.

After the first two rounds, the score was dead even. It was here that the Community team really stepped their game up, led by the Magic: The Amateuring duo. Maria and Meghan managed 2-1 and 3-0 records respectively. If they keep this up over the next format, they may have to rethink their qualifications. It looks pretty pro to me.

Complete coverage of the 2015 Magic Community Cup