Chris Coppola has been playing competitive Vintage and Legacy for many years, and has had considerable tournament success in both formats. His deckbuilding skills are a critical factor in his performances.
Legacy has advanced significantly since my last comprehensive analysis of the format. Many players all over the world are innovating, and the most competitive decks are becoming quite diverse. In this article, I will analyze the formats latest developments, and make some predictions about the metagame at this weekend’s Mana Leak Open 2.
In order to bring you more content, and to expand the host of fine writers we have here at StarCityGames.com, we’re pround to announce that, from today, we’re mirroring our Premium “floating” articles with a free article in the same design! Today’s offering comes from Legacy writer Chris Coppola. Here’s what he has to say on his article:
In this article, I draw on my experience as a Legacy deckbuilder and player and discuss the foundational cards of the format. I also emphasize the importance of creative deckbuilding and suggest some methods for creating new decks.
It has been two years (eight Banned/Restricted cycles after the format was created), and the Legacy banned list has not decreased in size. There are a few cards with very strong arguments for unbanning, and some with more ambiguous positions. However, the DCI has not indicated that they are even considering modifying the list.
The deck I designed four months ago existed in a different environment. Since then, Legacy has evolved. Threshold decks are much more popular, but other archetypes are beginning to demonstrate consistency and strength. Control decks are evolving beyond Landstill; Blue/White Angel Control and Red/White Rift Control appear to be a consistent presence in the metagame. Gamekeeper and IGGy Pop are well-developed combo decks that have put up good finishes. All these changes mean Angel Stax needs to undergo some modifications as well in order to remain competitive.
In my previous article on this deck, I explained the maindeck choices and gave some general sideboard options. I focused on the strategy of the deck and the explanation of why particular cards were included, or excluded. However, I did not spend much time talking about sideboarding, but instead gave some possible options and a general sideboard. In this article, I am going to talk about the sideboard. I will discuss how to construct it and how to use it against specific decks. I omitted discussion of two particularly relevant cards in the last article, and I will discuss their usefulness here. However, in order to explain all of this, I will need to explain more about how to play this deck properly.
The results of the Legacy Championships and the Grand Prix trials demonstrate that the Legacy environment is dominated by two distinct archetypes – aggro and control. Landstill decks were very successful prior to September 1st 2004, and they continue to be so even with Mana Drain out of the format. The accessibility and simplicity of Goblins make it the more popular deck at the moment, although the two decks are about even when matched up with each other. These two archetypes are going to continue to develop in unknown ways in the coming months. Although Legacy Stax has been talked about for months now, its absence in the metagame has never been more noticeable. A new archetype is needed that will diversify the format’s upper tier.