I think your "schools" approach feels a bit... shoehorn-y at times (in that Rob Hahn might not translate that well to
Having said that, as a combo player combo decks by their very nature are very disparate in a way control and aggro really aren't. Decks like ProsBloom, Metalworker, Doomsday, Dredge, etc. function so differently it's hard to categorize them together. Speaking of which, was there a Type I combo deck before Type II ProsBloom hit the scene? If not, maybe that's a good place to start.
To be clear: that's not how I classify decks within the "Combo School." The combo decks that are included in the "Restricted List Combo School" follow a very specific play pattern that includes: lots of mana acceleration, a high density of restricted cards, and a number of tutors (often unrestricted), and either a big mana or storm finisher (e.g. Fireball, Kaeverk's Torch, Tendrils of Agony), or recursive elements (like Twister loops or a bigYawg Will). Thus, decks in this school include: Pre-DCI Lotus/Twister decks, 1997 Prosperity Vice, 1997/8 Doomsday (recursion deck with Timetwister), 1998-2002 Academy, 2002 Burning Long, 2003-2008 TPS, 2005-6 Grim Long, Burning Oath, Dark Petition Storm, etc.
These are decks that follow the basic play pattern of: 1) generate lots of mana -> 2) draw or otherwise see lots of cards -> 3) play a critical mass finisher. They feature as high density of mana, and very few finishers (a single Fireball or Tendrils often). And they very often use disruption to protect this plan, like Duress, Defense Grid, Abeyance, City of Solitude, Xantid Swarm, Force of Will, etc. But if you map 2002 Burning Long and 2015 DPS, it's basically the same scaffolding, just different cards in that slot. No different with other Schools, like comparing 1994 The Deck with 2002 Keeper, except that the win conditions change (i.e. Morphling over Serra Angel, etc.)
Combo decks that are focused on assembling two random cards don't fall into this school.
ProsBloom was never a tournament level Type I deck because you didn't need Cadaverous Bloom.
That being said- in your position, I'd focus on the decks. Tell us when new, interesting things happened that changed the way we think about and play Vintage (or even Magic as a whole). Tell us those stories. Weave together the fabric of the format by showing us the world as it was when it changed greatly. What was it like when Comer figured out how to Xerox? How did it change the landscape? Which darlings did it kill? Which did it foster? How does it influence what we're doing today? The same for Shops (the more control variants, the ones today are really just Zoo decks imo) and Dredge and Oath and Control (the Deck, of course, comes to mind!). The schools can be your invisible scaffolding, that which guides you in delivering the stories, but they need not be the exoskeleton that binds the body from the outside and is all that's visible to the onlooker.
In any case, I do all of these things, but the Aggro Shops decks are still very obviously Aggro O'Brien School decks, which played with 4 Juggernaut and 4 Juzam in some cases.
Thanks to everyone who replied: it affirmed my inclination, which is to take a hybrid approach rather than trying to insist upon a player name for each school.
That's not the issue. It would be too cumbersome to track when we haven't figured out any details of the book whatsoever. We don't know how long it's going to be in print, let alone how much the book would be. There are so many details that have to be ironed out that we haven't even begun to discuss.
Stuart sent me some great feedback. If you do get the chapter, be sure to post your thoughts!
It's pretty surreal that the series is almost done. I literally have one chapter left to finish writing, and the other three are under various stages of editing.
That said, I'm still putting the call out there for players to:
share anecdotes or stories that might be used in the main body or in an endnote
identify big tournaments I missed
send photos or graphics we can include
These chapters are dirt cheap - just spare pocket change - so I really hope that folks can help crowd source these answers.
The chapters will need to be reformatted for the book, and so we'll be doing another edit through all of them for the book. But once that's done, and the book is published, it will be too late to add or correct anything. I'm hoping that this book will be a definitively history of the format to be enjoyed by all Magic players for years to come. So PLEASE be sure to help with the items above.
Anyone complaining that I missed something will be immediately directed to this thread in a few months, when the book is finally published.
Well, you will be happy to learn that it is indeed featured here. Not only that, but it is exemplary of contemporary iterations of the Lestree school of vintage magic. There is an extensive commentary on this point.
You are welcome! Please let me know what you think of this chapter. I am really happy with it from a narrative and aesthetic perspective. And I'm also glad to get this project rolling again. The challenge is writing something more cohesive than my "Year in Review" articles. I think you'll be happy with the result.