By Niels Viaene

Was it the fact that this one was the closing event for this part of the season? Was it the fact that it was the first time we could play with M21 cards? Was it another reason all together? We will never know. We do know that 25 players ended up joining the event, making it the biggest since the corona measures have dropped to allow social interaction in Europe. Not only that, we had 4 new players join the fray and doing pretty well for some of them. Let’s look at tome of the better performing lists.

4-0 Kristof Van Holsbeek
Azorius Control

Deck (60)
Essence Scatter
11 Island
The Birth of Meletis
Banishing Light
Swift Response
Tranquil Cove
Realm-Cloaked Giant
Mystic Sanctuary
Opt
Plains
Chemister’s Insight
Archon of Sun’s Grace
Didn’t Say Please
Omen of the Sea
Quench
Prison Realm
Thirst for Meaning
Dream Trawler
Time Wipe
Evolving Wilds
Devious Cover-Up
Neutralize
Sideboard (15)
Negate
Disdainful Stroke
Swift Response
Mystical Dispute
Disenchant
Devious Cover-Up
Whisper Agent

Kristof has been playing Azorius Control this entire season and cone to this even without any addition form M21 in his decklist, showing that good old faithful can take it home when coupled with crisp plays.

4-0 Niels Kok
Gruul Stompy

Deck (60)
Ilysian Caryatid
Forest
Kronch Wrangler
Nessian Hornbeetle
Warden of the Chained
Fierce Witchstalker
Frenzied Arynx
Proud Wildbonder
Quartzwood Crasher
Domri, Anarch of Bolas
Vivien, Monsters’ Advocate
Mountain
Rugged Highlands
Gruul Guildgate
God-Eternal Rhonas
Ram Through
Wildwood Patrol
Sideboard (15)
Scorching Dragonfire
Wilt
Ranger’s Guile
Return to Nature
Rhythm of the Wild
Destiny Spinner
Shredded Sails
Shock

Sometimes bigger is just better, and Niels proves it here with his Gruul deck. A point of attention is the Rhythm of the Wild in his sideboard, showing that he sees Control as only a small part of the metagame. For this event, he was right, too, as we saw Control, especially Dimir variants, struggle to achieve anything.

3-1 Niels Viaene
Mono-B Aristocrats

Companion (1)
Lurrus of the Dream-Den

Deck (60)
Cauldron Familiar
19 Swamp
Sanitarium Skeleton
Serrated Scorpion
Whisper Squad
Witch’s Oven
Burglar Rat
Lampad of Death’s Vigil
Priest of Forgotten Gods
Call of the Death-Dweller
Knight of the Ebon Legion
Witch’s Cottage
Castle Locthwain
Village Rites
Archfiend’s Vessel
Sideboard (15)
Lurrus of the Dream-Den
Duress
Mire’s Grasp
Spark Harvest
Pharika’s Libation

I managed to sneak in third place as the highest performing 3-1 player with a deck focused on making the most out of Archfiend’s Vessel by playing the full 4 Call of the Deathdweller in a Lurrus shell. The deck definitely needs some tweaking but I am sure that core is there to stay for a while in Gentry.

3-1 Nicolas Asencio
Temur Reclamation

Deck (60)
Simic Guildgate
Thornwood Falls
Thornwood Falls
Growth Spiral
Mountain
Island
Cultivate
Arboreal Grazer
Shark Typhoon
Hydroid Krasis
Gruul Guildgate
Rugged Highlands
Rugged Highlands
Expansion
Forest
Swiftwater Cliffs
Wilderness Reclamation
Chemister’s Insight
Volcanic Geyser
Flame Sweep
Frantic Inventory
Thassa’s Intervention
Fire Prophecy
Sideboard (15)
Essence Scatter
Negate
Hypothesizzle
Return to Nature
Didn’t Say Please

In 5th place, we see the best performing first time Gentry player bringing an archetype many people expected to make a comeback thanks to Volcanic Geyser, but Nicolas did not even play the card in his version of that deck, showing there is still plenty to learn about Gentry.

3-1 Matteo Ferrnado
Azorius Birds

Deck (60)
Cloudkin Seer
Hanged Executioner
Faerie Miscreant
Healer’s Hawk
Sephara, Sky’s Blade
Spectral Sailor
Empyrean Eagle
Rally of Wings
Winged Words
Skycat Sovereign
Plains
13 Island
Dream Trawler
Faerie Vandal
Faerie Duelist
Lofty Denial
Sideboard (15)
Disenchant
Swift Response
Negate
Disdainful Stroke
Faerie Duelist
Keep Safe

Another new player and another deck that people were expecting to show up in Gentry. This time it was Watcher of the Spheres that was expected to make a splash, but Matteo decide to go way harder and faster, not living in fear of sweepers. Lofty Denial is just enough control for this deck that can rely on Rally of Wings to finish matches out of nowhere.

Conclusion

Core set 2021 seems to have had more influence in bringing people to the tournament than it had in actual decklists, but things are new and a lot of possibilities have been touched that are sure to deliver in the future.

This was the last event of this split and after grouping up the different regions it was decided to settle on the following and people that are winning a bye for the Arena Gentry Open in September (tba):

Belgium – Gent

Belgium – Other

Europe – Non-Belgium

Non-Europe

Robbe Schildermans (2)

Kristof Van Holsbeeck (4)

Peter Jönsson (1)

William Jackson (8)

A lot of people chose not to select a region, which meant we had to be very friendly and ignore rules we set up in the description for the event and getting byes. For that reason, a revision will be made to region selection and importance for the second part of season XI. For now, let’s celebrate the return of real-life event, with the leaderboard in Bredene coming up this weekend.

Niels Viaene came into contact with Magic first through the Kazz & Zakk starter set in 1996, but it wouldn’t be until 2000, around the time Prophecy came out that he actually started playing magic thanks to his nephew. Niels’ Magic career has been a roller coaster up to now, including Grand Prix Paris 2009 top 8, Pro Tour San Diego 2010 top 8, becoming a L3 Magic Judge in 2015 and managing the community effort that is the League of New and Beginning Magic: the Gathering Players, the birthing ground for Gentry since 2012. All this comes from a deep love for the game that is far from diminishing.

1 Comment

  1. Matteo Ferrando

    Reply

    Ferrnado seems like Sharknado. Thank you Niels for organizing these tournamens!!

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