By Niels Viaene
Now that things are starting to settle in the local community, we are seeing people coming back to the Gentry weekly. Apparently the allure of reopening bars has already waned enough to bounce the attendance numbers back up. 23 Players joined the event, 2 of them first-time Weekly players.
There definitely was a lot of diversity in the metagame, but as you will see, there is something connecting a lot of them.
4-0 Andries Regniers
Andries took Micky Mattens’ blue-red decklist into the event and prompty went undefeated with it. This list focuses heavily on Ominous Seas and Improbably Alliance, forgoing the Crackling Drakes that had become synonymous for the deck in Gentry.
Izzet Midrange/Control has historically been a versy strong deck, featuring a lot of flexibility in how to build it and varying the amount of pressuring and finishing speed greatly based on what the metagame is soft to. That makes it a great archetype for good deckbuilders and players to specialise into.
This finish has pushed Andries up the ranks by quite a bit, landing him in 7th place.
4-0 Kobe Keymeulen
Dimir Control has solidly manifested itself as the measuring stick of the current metagame. Enough good players are choosing this deck because it allows for outplaying your opponents and controlling most things people bring to the board.
The deck allows for drastic changes in playstyle and game dynamics off very small changes to the cards in the decklist. Here we see Kobe going back to Saheeli, Sublime Artificer, which is usually a way to make Spark Harvest easier to work with, but he is only playing one, and that is in the sideboard, making this Saheeli a finisher instead. Kobe opted to go for the full set of 4 Witching Well as well (pun intended) which I would consider his pet card in the deck, giving him more raw card advantage while freeing up his uncommon slots by cutting down to a single Chemister’s Insight. Dimir Control decks are all about the tine adjustments at this point, and now we have both Kobe and Sander bringing their interpretations of the archetype. A point of attention is that both these players are yet to play their 5th event, so look out for them to suddenly appear a lot higher in the leaderboard.
3-1 Peter Steenbeke
Peter is pretty well known for taking underrated archetypes and putting a little spin on them to turn them into strong performing contenders. While definitely not the first person to add Black to mono-white Lifegain, he is the person to perform best with it so far.
The deck has the tried and true start of Healer’s Hawk[c] into [c]Ajani’s Pridemate for some of the highest pressure starts in the game, but also relies on Lurrus of the Dream Den and a little recirsive removal suit for staying power and extra interaction. Adding black also gives you a lot more tools to fight against Control in Duress and Spark Harvest.
In this event, it was the top performing aggressive deck. But it is a nightmare to fight for other aggro decks, putting even more pressure on those.
3-1 Joris Misotten
Four Color Mutate
Blue-Green builds, sometimes lightly splashing for another color, have been tried a lot in the past weeks, to mediocre success. This deck steps away from the card advantage grinding approach those decks have, ditching blue even, and goes all-in on another strategy.
With a full set of Vampire of the Dire Moon and MossViper the odds of getting a deathtouching Porcuparrot on the board are pretty high. to compelement this interaction, there are 4 Ram Through and 2 Rabid Bite to make sure that even without the prickly beast, Joris can take out opponents. That makes this abnother deck that is unforgiving for aggro decks. This makes him quite a bit weaker to Control lists, but he aims to address that with his rare suit. This is an original approach and a great addition to the Gentry landscape.
After a few weeks’ domination of aggressive decks the metagame is answering back again. Bogles decks look to be target number 1 here, with the two players on the strategy managing just 2 wins combined. The result is that Control decks surged back to the top as they can deal a lot better with the creature and pressure-hating strategies those decks bring to the table.
Sultai Elementals was the most played archetype of the event, just off Peter Jönsson winning the Monthly with it. It was the man himself, however, that managed to win most with the deck, putting him on 3-1, leaving the rest of his pack behind, but all of them made 2-2, making it a top 3 best performing deck, and the one with the least spread, a highly consistent deck.
Peter Jönsson is still in the lead, but prime contender Robbe Schildermans has closed the gap to the smallest possible difference. Interestingly, that makes for two players that are sort of known for doing ‘their thing’ in Gentry. Peter’s Sultai Elementals has turned into a metagame deck others are having succes on. The same cannot be said about Robbe and his Umori Instants deck, A few other people have tried but failed at posting decent results with the deck.
Our top contenders are shaping up quite nicely and this is turning into some pretty fierce competition at the top, but don’t think it is over. Sander De Quick currently is on only 4 events but has 126 points, only 40 short of first seed, meaning a good performance can easily land him in the 5, or all the way into the lead if the event size were to return to that cap of 30 players again.
Renzo Verkooren in 3rd place is somewhat deceptive as well, as he has a poor performance hiding in his top 5 events still. He has the potential to bridge a few more points than others in the top 5.
That is without looking at people that have less than 4 events so far, but with this season running until mid-September, and not even being halfway in, there are a lot of people that could still make a run for it. For all we know, the ultimate mage might still be missing from the list altogether. It could be you, kind reader. (editor’s note: don’t break the fourth wall! [writer’s note: shut up, we are the same person, stop trying to be funny])
May your inner conversations be more productive,