Is there any place where they’ve announced the winners and decks?
Mana crypt was printed around late 1995 I think, I can’t remember if it was legal or not, but there were plenty of decks that could use it.
MirrorU decks could have considered 1-2, as they often needed to damage themselves for the mirror kill.
Some zoo decks ran ernham, serendibs, and serras, so they could have considered it.
Mono-artifact was pretty rare, at least in the tournaments I went to, but it might have worked well.
As I mentioned before, I did see it in some pretty fast Atog decks (cursed scroll, vice, bolts, factories, etc), but that wasn’t till 1996?
Academy decks were extremely fast and likely would have preferred some extra mana.
Tinker and Welder were popular decks, albeit much later.
I’m not saying it was optimal, but maybe just overlooked because people evaluated cards differently then?
I think if we replayed Vintage these days (free plug: http://www.themanadrain.com/topic/2795/vintage-redux-a-new-format-for-your-consideration) we would find that it was way more playable than we thought.
The best old decks that could utilize mana crypt back in the day were shops, I think. Juggies, Su-Chi, Trike...workshop + mana crypt meant a stream of 4/4 or 5/3 threats from turn 1 forward.
Part of the reason crypt was so slow to catch on is the lack of threats in early mtg. In most of the formats where where crypt was legal at least in the early days there were few to no good ways to quickly close games and so the crypt was actually detrimental. That 3 damage flip may not seem like much to a storm or PO player today who can kill on turn 2 or 3 but back in early magic it was not uncommon for games to go 20/30 turns and in a case like that 1.5 damage per turn would really add up. This was compounded by the fact that the most aggressive decks who could end games fast frequently did not spend enough colorless mana to justify a rock like crypt especially when it would/could loose you the mirror. The decks who could best use it with expensive spells like wrath or fact or fiction or recall(not the ancestral one) were the ones who made games the longest and least wanted to deal with the drawback. The issue was less about how good the card was and more about no deck really existing that could take great advantage of it’s strengths while also not caring to heavily about the downside.