Feature: Day 1 Metagame Breakdown

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The deck on everyone’s mind headed into this weekend was undoubtedly Blue-black Faeries with some projecting its prevalence to be as high as 40 percent of the field. While the Fae tribe did indeed prove to be the most popular deck on the weekend it didn’t inundate the field as much as expected with a tamer 27 percent of Pros choosing to pilot some version of the deck (one brave soul even reverted to a Blue-green build). The second most popular deck on the weekend was Black-green Elves and most builds tried to get around the gorilla in the room using Cloudthresher with varying degrees of success.

Some of the more interesting decks to show up on the weekend include a number of Black-red Token decks filled to the brim with cards that generate tokens (Marsh Flitter, Bitterblossom, Goblin War Marshal) and cards that take advantage of them (Greater Gargadon, Nantuko Husk, Furystoke Giant). A contingent of French players managed to get hold of Manuel Bucher’s deck which defied classification and featured Fulminator Mage, Mulldrifter, Murderous Redcap and a host of powerful cards played via a manabase stretched to the max with lands like Reflecting Pool and Gemstone Mine. After consulting with the brain trust behind the deck, it was dubbed “Quicken Toast.” Rounding out the assortment of oddball decks was Worlds finalist Patrick Chapin’s concoction played by himself and a few of his Livonia, Michigan teammates. The deck featured Bonded Fetch, Careful Consideration, and other draw/discard effects to abuse the interaction between Greater Gargadon and creatures with persist (most notably Murderous Redcap and Kitchen Finks). A timely Body Double or Reveillark could create mounds of card advantage and steal games.

Make sure to check the Saturday coverage for a look at some of the actual decklists, and here is the metagame breakdown for Pro Tour-Hollywood 2008:

Archetype Count Percent
Faeries 101 27.22%
Black-green Elves 47 12.67%
Monored 41 11.05%
Doran 31 8.36%
Merfolk 28 7.55%
Red-green Aggro 18 4.85%
Reveillark 18 4.85%
Red-green Ramp 15 4.04%
Black-green Ramp 10 2.70%
Black-red tokens 8 2.16%
White-green Ramp 7 1.89%
Juniper Order Ranger Combo 6 1.62%
ELVES! 6 1.62%
Quick 'n Toast 5 1.35%
Kithkin 4 1.08%
Monogreen Aggro 4 1.08%
Gassy Knoll 3 0.81%
The Chapin Deck 3 0.81%
Green-white Aggro 3 0.81%
Black-red Aggro 2 0.54%
Elementals 1 0.27%
Fiery Justice 1 0.27%
Wizards 1 0.27%
Blue-green Faeries 1 0.27%
Other 7 1.89%
Total 371 100%
“Other” refers to decks which were not easily classifiable and were represented by only one player in the tournament
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