Welcome to our fourth weekly Showdown Recap, where we take a look at what happened at Face to Face Games Toronto’s weekly Sunday Showdown, a series of 1k events feeding into the Ultimate Showdown 5k Invitational. Fresh off of Grand Prix Louisville, this week featured the Legacy format, and 50 players brought out their dual lands and Force of Wills to do battle.
As the first major Legacy event in a while, GP Louisville featured a bunch of new and refined strategies, many of them aided by the new Conspiracy: Take the Crown all-star Leovold, Emissary of Trest. There was plenty of RB Reanimator, the flavour of the month on Magic Online, and I was personally turn 1’d by the deck twice through my Force of Will. That deck was found to be extremely fast and consistent, a serious threat to the format that would encourage players to jam additional graveyard hate into their sideboards. Due to the speed of the deck, however, many traditional cards like Nihil Spellbomb and Rest in Peace were likely to not be fast enough! This, alongside the prevalence of Life from the Loam and Punishing Fire in Lands decks, meant that Surgical Extraction was likely to see a resurgence as the hate card of choice in Legacy sideboards.
In the end, however, despite the scare of RB Reanimator and Aluren with Leovold, Emissary of Trest, Reid Duke took down the event with a Sultai midrange deck heavily focused on playing Leovold on turn 2, with full sets of both Deathrite Shaman and Noble Hierarch powering it out. This makes blue and cantrip-heavy decks quite risky to bring to the table, so what did this mean for the Showdown?
We saw the rise of… Deadguy Ale?
Local Legacy superstar Wilkin Chau has been playing Dark Confidants on turn 1 for years, but this venerable Scrubland deck had never really been popular, let alone successful, in the hands of anyone but him. However, as a deck with Thoughtseize, Deathrite Shaman, powerful threats, and no Leovold-vulnerable cantrips, the disruptive midrange strategy seemed well-positioned in the post-Louisville field. A full three players made it to the elimination rounds of the Showdown with variants of Deadguy Ale, two of them featuring Wilkin’s “invitational card”, Shriekmaw.
Of course, Legacy is Legacy, and there were some solid brews in the top 8. Another Toronto Legacy legend, Lam Phan brought UB Landstill (or as we call it, Lamstill), eschewing the traditional Lightning Bolt for the new Fatal Push, allowing him to deal with a wider variety of threatening creatures. Josh Oji is always one to stray off the beaten path, and this week he brought a deck featuring not only Daretti, Ingenious Iconoclast, but even a maindeck Padeem, Consul of Innovation!
In the end, however, the young Boston Schatteman was able to take first place in the event with an old stalwart, Delver of Secrets. The Grixis version of the deck combines powerful threats with extremely efficient answers, and no matter what Leovolds might exist, Delver always seems to stick around.
With his win, Boston becomes the fifth player to qualify for the Ultimate Showdown! Congratulations to our top 8, and as always, thanks to everyone for coming! Join us this Sunday for a Standard Showdown, fresh off a new banlist and powerful cards from Aether Revolt. Will black-green strategies dominate the event like they did at SCG Columbus, or will the Jeskai Saheeli decks take the throne that was promised to them? Preregister now!
Boston Schatteman – Grixis Delver – 1st
Jason Drossis – Sultai Midrange – 2nd
Wilkin Chau – Deadguy Ale – 3rd
Josh Cronk – RG Lands – 4th
Lam Phan – UB “Lamstill” – 5th
Alexander Tkach – Deadguy Ale – 6th
Josh Oji – Grixis Tezzeret – 7th
Brian Bogdon – Deadguy Ale – 8th