Welcome to another 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. This week, we took a break from three weeks straight of Facetofacegames.com Tournament Series events in Ontario to run a Legacy Sunday Showdown!
Last time, we saw a metagame dominated by Deathrite Shaman decks. From Aluren to Delver of Secrets with every kind of Leovold, Emissary of Trest in between, Sultai was doubtlessly the deck to play in that metagame. Perhaps as a response to that tuned blue-heavy disruptive metagame, this Showdown brought out a bunch of more rogue decks alongside the expected Food Chain strategies.
Let’s start from the bottom, with Jason Mccullough putting Miracles’ first Showdown top 8 on the scoreboard. For a while, Miracles decks were heavily influenced by the powerful Monastery Mentor, playing Ponder for a higher cantrip count, or more down the Joe Lossett Legend path, with Karakas and Venser, Shaper Savant. Recently, however, we’ve been seeing a return to the more traditional Entreat the Angels win condition – the path Jason chose to take. He threw a curveball at the typical red splash however, choosing to play the powerful Notion Thief over Pyroblast. Move over, Leovold! Something else to note is his sideboard’s heavy reliance on Surgical Extraction for graveyard hate. As Tarmogoyf and Delve spells fade from popularity, Rest in Peace becomes weaker, and so spending less and less mana for your graveyard hate becomes preferable. With four Snapcaster Mages in the maindeck, and with the primary graveyard hate targets being the blisteringly-fast BR Reanimator as well as specifically Life from the Loam, Surgical Extraction should be at the forefront of any hate you might want to play in this format.
Next up we’ve got Hearthstone star Andrew Gordon and Jason Drossis taking Food Chain, the Deathrite Shaman deck of the week, to quarterfinals finishes. Both decks are practically identical – a powerful disruptive midrange deck with lots of gas thanks to Manipulate Fate and Misthollow Griffin as well as a combo finish. The sideboard features additional disruptive elements. This deck is nothing to laugh at, as it has more powerful cards than the similar Aluren deck, and is better at ending the game than its Shardless Agent cousins.
Miracles has been oddly absent in our results, but so has its basic Plains brethren, Death and Taxes. James Mckay piloted it to a quarterfinals berth this week. Death and Taxes, fittingly, hasn’t changed much over the years, with the exception of a significant shake-up coming from Conspiracy: Take the Throne. Recruiter of the Guard lets the deck play a powerful uncounterable toolbox off of Aether Vial, and Sanctum Prelate is a surprisingly powerful card.
Moving on to our semifinalists, we find a pair of sweet, rare decks. Travis Macdonald brought a 12-post mono-brown Stax (?) deck to this deep finish, powering out Chalice of the Void, Trinisphere, and huge Walking Ballistas, playing Triskelion as Richard Garfield intended. Any deck playing Spine of Ish Sah unironically has my vote. On the other side of the converted mana cost spectrum, we have Eric Hunter with quadlaser Burn. As someone who types up or edits far too many decklists every week, I have great respect for someone who runs eleven different cards in their maindeck. On another level, 4-ofs are extremely good because they demonstrate that the deckbuilder just knew what cards were better than other ones. No messing around. Just good stuff. Burn ’em.
Quinn Gregg came off a Frontier Showdown win a few weeks ago to a finals appearance here with the cross-format Eldrazi menace! The second mono-brown deck in this top 8, Legacy Eldrazi gets all the power of the banned Modern deck, but gets to consistently play turn 1 Chalice of the Void followed by Thought-Knot Seer. We haven’t seen quite as much of this deck due to the rise in Baleful Strix recently, but Quinn showed that it’s still a force to be reckoned with.
You might have noticed a bit of a trend in the decks in this top 8 – with the exception of the basic Plains decks, this top 8 relies heavily on 3-colour manabases or colourless manabases that are weak to Wasteland. It might not surprise you, then, that Zane Pimiskern won the event with a turbo-Wasteland deck! 4-colour Life from the Loam consistently runs a bit under the radar in Legacy, as it falls solidly in between a disruptive Maverick-style deck and the popular but easily-hated Lands. Any deck that gets to play Chalice of the Void and Liliana of the Veil is no laughing matter. This deck is real, and Wasteland is an exceptional card in Toronto’s Legacy metagame.
Congratulations to Zane, whose win qualifies him for the Ultimate Showdown! Quinn and Jason Drossis’s finishes put them both solidly into the top 10 of the standings. Join us on Sunday for a Frontier Showdown with bonus points towards the Ultimate Showdown! See you there!
Zane Pimiskern – 4c Loam – 1st
Quinn Gregg – Eldrazi – 2nd
Eric Hunter – Burn – 3rd
Travis Macdonald – Stax – 4th
Jason Drossis – Food Chain – 5th
James Mckay – Death and Taxes – 6th
Andrew Gordon – Food Chain – 7th
Jason Mccullough – Miracles – 8th