Day 2 Metagame Breakdown

Posted in GRAND PRIX RIMINI 2016 on August 14, 2016

By Frank Karsten

Recently at Grand Prix, with players at 6-3 records making it to Day 2, we've had to settle for a "Top 100" breakdown of the humongous second day's metagame.

In Rimini, however, fewer than 1,000 players registered for the main event, which meant that "only" 272 players advanced to the Sunday competition. That's a reasonable number for a full, traditional metagame breakdown, so here it is in all its glory.

Deck Archetype Number of Players Percentage
Bant Company 83 31.8%
U/R Fevered Burn 39 14.9%
W/B Control 35 13.2%
B/G Delirium 17 6.5%
Temur Emerge 16 6.1%
R/G Ramp 15 5.7%
Four-Color Emerge 10 3.8%
W/R Humans 6 2.3%
Jund Delirium 6 2.3%
Abzan Midrange 4 1.5%
Bant Humans 4 1.5%
G/W Tokens 5 1.5%
Mono Red Aggro 3 1.1%
U/W Spirits 2 0.8%
B/G Seasons Past 1 0.4%
Bant Spirits 1 0.4%
Esper Control 1 0.4%
Esper Dragons 1 0.4%
Esper Processor 1 0.4%
Four-Color Human Company 1 0.4%
G/R Goggles 1 0.4%
Jund Midrange 1 0.4%
Mardu Planeswalkers 1 0.4%
Mono Blue Prison 1 0.4%
Mono Red Eldrazi 1 0.4%
Naya Planeswalkers 1 0.4%
R/B Reveler 1 0.4%
U/B Zombies 1 0.4%
U/G Crush 1 0.4%
U/R Fliers 1 0.4%
U/R Goggles 1 0.4%

According to this data, there are four big archetypes in Standard: Bant Company, U/R Fevered Burn, W/B Control, and Emrakul decks. (The class of Emrakul decks, good in total for 14.1% of the metagame, contains Temur Emerge, R/G Ramp, and Jund Delirium.) Together, these four make up almost 3/4th of the entire Day 2 field.

While Bant Company, W/B Control, and Emrakul decks were seen in the Top 8 of Pro Tour Eldritch Moon last weekend, the breakout deck for this weekend is U/R Fevered Burn.

Created by Pedro "_megafone_" Carvalho, the deck was unveiled last weekend in Sydney, where he took it to a 9-1 record in Standard. It exploits a lot of new cards from Eldritch Moon, such as Thermo-Alchemist, Collective Defiance, and Incendiary Flow. Thermo-Alchemist in particular blocks 2-power creatures, dodges Kozilek's Return, and provides a repeated source of unblockable damage. It's what a burn deck needs in the current Standard.

The best-known players playing the deck in Rimini are (3) Lukas Blohon and (23) Ivan Floch. Yesterday, Floch told me that he felt the deck was powerful against Emrakul strategies in particular. But after learning that the deck was a well-known commodity and that players were ready with cards like Peace of Mind, Floch said that he would have chosen a different deck if he knew people would have adapted so quickly. His friend Lukas Blohon shared a similar sentiment.

But how to call the deck? Yesterday, we put a poll on Twitter where "U/R Thermo-Thing" and "U/R Alchemist" got the most votes. However, given that (i) some players have cut Thing in the Ice from their deck, (ii) Fevered Visions is arguably more important to the strategy than Thermo-Alchemist, and (iii) Blohon called it a burn deck, we will call it "U/R Fevered Burn" going forward.

Will the name stick? Will the deck become a fixture of the new Standard? Or will its numbers dwindle in a sea of Bant Company? Stay tuned to find out.