North American Eternal Weekend 2017 Metagame Breakdown
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@arcranedenial said in North American Eternal Weekend 2017 Metagame Breakdown:

Are we really surprised that the inbred blue decks with maindeck 4x misstep, multiple pyroblast and a smattering of other dead cards with no sideboard recourse are losing to shops? I mean let’s call a spade a spade.

If this point had any validity, then neither chalice, lodestone golem nor thorn would've been restricted. The exact same argument was raised & rejected in each case.

Very disappointing meta if you ask me...

I think most players have hit the nail pretty much on the head and diversity in the format boils down to two problem children.

Mishra's Workshop
Mental Misstep

I think the restricting of Mentor opened things up a bit and I approve of the thorn restriction, I think they got it right over sphere in terms of its effect on shops decks. But without the above mentioned problem children being restricted, then a lot of decks that might not otherwise have a shot, are simply relegated to inferior status.

I think we all can see the benefits with the restriction of workshop, but there are so additional benefits to Mental Misstep being restricted, such as Dredge gets weakened, they no longer get a free counter "Grafdigger's Cage". Heck they are either main decking and/or side boarding a full compliment of them, and it quite honestly brings back dark ritual which I think is a good thing for the format.

Perhaps i'm just living in the past, thinking back to the days where the metagame had a large contingent of viable decks all at once. Keeper / Dragon / Mask / TnT / Stax / Blue Control / Hulk / Gro / Fish / Mono-Black and a plethora of variants that flirted with the tier 1 mark.

@bobbyvictory @13NoVa I don't know what you guys did to blow up this thread but I'm going to re-iterate the thing I think is the most relevant from that convo for posterity which is that @13NoVa pointed out that Welder's decline was not due to Mental Misstep. Similarly many of the other decks you mentioned fell out of favor long before Mental Misstep was ever printed.

last edited by Aaron Patten

@eksem If someone replied to this, I missed it and I apologize.

Classification is always a mess. What Ryan and I have been attempting is to convey as much information as possible to the community through how we present our data. With that in mind,

  • Big Blue refers to decks running the full artifact mana package, Tinker, and Yawgmoth's Will. Current versions of these decks include Grixis Thieves, various Gifts combo decks, etc. These are historically Mana Drain deck but Mana Drain plays a diminished role in the metagame so we didn't think that was a good category name.
  • Blue Control refers to decks like Landstill and Blue Moon, which are also Mana Drain decks but typically are winning the through "fair" cards like Jace, the Mindsculptor, Mishra's Factory, or Snapcaster Mage. We thought these decks were different enough from Big Blue decks to justify an additional category.
  • Xerox or the cantrip decks are the previous Gush decks and include Pyromancer, Delver, and Mentor based decks. With any restriction, it's relevant to look how the decks directly affected by that restriction persist in the metagame. This has been subject of much discussion in the Vintage community, but not the larger Magic community as a whole. Because of that, we created a Delver category and put the Mentor Control decks in Blue Control as we thought that was more appropriate for the wider audience checking Champs coverage.
  • Paradoxical decks can theoretically go into either Big Blue or Blue Control, depending on the build. Again, this was an effort to answer a specific concern of the community - Paradoxical Outcome has been in the discussion for a restriction and there was talk that the deck might dominate the Vintage metagame since Thorn and Mentor were restricted. I think we are getting to the point where our classification scheme needs to be revamped, but we still have this category.

Hopefully that answered your question. If it did not, or you have additional questions, feel free to ask!

last edited by Guest

Thanks for the breakdown! It def looks like shops needs a hit or maybe two, just hoping the preserve the workshop and maybe whack Ravager and Inspector, love my shops and don't really love playing affinity:) Anyway, we'll see in a couple months.

@aaron-patten Thanks! Came here to say exactly that. I don't think any of those archetypes would flourish in a restricted-Misstep meta. Maybe we'd see a bump in storm.

EDIT: sorry, I don't want to turn this thread into another restriction discussion, so I deleted what I said and posted in the right place here

last edited by fsecco

Ryan & Matt,

I have NO idea how you produced this gargantuan spreadsheet within literally 24 hours after EW.

Massive congratulations and appreciation are in order.



Amazing work on the breakdown. Thank you!

Does anyone know how to calculate, using the last round standings and the win %s here, what's the most probable Top 8 for this tournament?

Not trying to sound ungrateful, but I have a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that Steve's post graciously thanking us for our work has more upvotes than Ryan's original post (currently 7 to 10).

Let Ryan know you like what he does...give him an upvote :p.

Edit: Original Post now winning 12 to 11. Ryan is swan diving into that sweet, sweet TMD rep.


I picked an image with a math equation because I know Ryan likes those...

last edited by Guest


Quick/lazy idea:
It seems quite complicated to model the last round due to people drawing and tiebreakers. I would instead model the entire tournament. Pretend everything is independent, that every player stays in for all 10 rounds, and there are no draws. Then each player's record is a binomial distribution with p=their archetype's sample winrate. Calculate the probability that any individual player gets an X-1 or better record ((10 choose 10)p^10+(10 choose 9)p^9(1-p)) and multiply that by the number of players of that archetype to get the expected number in the top 8. Then hope that this sum over all archetypes is roughly 8 so you don't have to do anything more complicated. Alternatively, normalize so that you predict 8 decks to get a reasonable (?) estimate.

EDIT: Here's what I got while wasting time watching the VSL:
alt text
(Disclaimer: I am not a statistician and assumed a bunch of stuff that's not true. Also, the winrate of the best players of a given archetype has a huge impact on the top8 rather than the overall winrate.)

Likely a more accurate setup would be to model each round of the tournament separately, and only look at pairings with players of similar records. I don't have the time to do this, but I would be interested in seeing the results if anyone carries it out.

last edited by diophan

@diophan That's pretty cool, and goes with almost everyone's prediction of around 3 shops in that Top 8 🙂 Thanks for that

I'll try to do this once I get more time and actually find the last round pairings; but what I'm trying to understand is how the story of that Top 8 could've changed. Everyone is commenting on Shops dominance mainly because the Top 8 had 5 Shops and just 1 other archetype. I want to find out how hard was it for that to happen, just by the last round results. I guess a slightly different configuration in the matches could've made a much more diverse Top 8.

@chubbyrain said in North American Eternal Weekend 2017 Metagame Breakdown:

Let Ryan know you like what he does...give him an upvote :p.

What if my lack of upvote is protest that everytime Ryan and I play we go to time >.>

@winterstar He can't be as bad as @brianpk80. No one is THAT slow...

@chubbyrain But as long as Brian is playing in a Challenge I know I have time to get food in round three!

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