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Players Tour 4 Day Two Metagame Breakdown

June 21, 2020
Corbin Hosler

Entering this weekend, the Standard metagame was thought to be solved. Temur Reclamation was far and away the best deck – it won both Players Tour events last weekend – but entering into Day Two of Players Tour Online 4, we found from our 152 remaining competitors that there’s plenty of other ways to win. Jund Sacrifice won Players Tour Online 3 earlier in the day in the hands of William Craddock, and in the final Players Tour event this month we saw Temur Reclamation cede ground to other decks.

Here’s how the full Players Tour 4 Day Two metagame broke down:

Archetype Count % Meta Day Two
Temur Reclamation 33 21.71%
Bant Ramp 26 17.11%
Rakdos Knights 11 7.24%
Azorius Control 8 5.26%
Rakdos Sacrifice 8 5.26%
Jund Sacrifice 7 4.61%
Mono-Green Monsters 7 4.61%
Bant Flash 6 3.95%
4-Color Reclamation 6 3.95%
Mono-Green Stompy 6 3.95%
Sultai Ramp 6 3.95%
Mono-Red Aggro 4 2.63%
Boros Cycling (Lurrus) 3 1.97%
Mono-White Aggro 3 1.97%
4-Color Control 2 1.32%
Jund Sacrifice (Jegantha) 2 1.32%
Mardu Knights 2 1.32%
Mono-Black Aggro 2 1.32%
Orzhov Yorion (Yorion) 2 1.32%
Azorius Control (Yorion) 1 0.66%
Esper Control 1 0.66%
Esper Control (Yorion) 1 0.66%
Esper Dance 1 0.66%
Gruul Aggro 1 0.66%
Mono-Red Cavalcade 1 0.66%
Rakdos Sacrifice (Jegantha) 1 0.66%
Selesnya Adventure 1 0.66%
Total 152 100.00%

For the most popular deck in the field, it was an underperformance, as it lost metagame share, which was picked up mostly by Rakdos decks. Nine of the 13 blue-white players advanced to Day Two, a strong conversion rate led by Hall of Famer Gabriel Nassif. Here’s how the top archetypes fared from Day One to Day Two.

Deck Day 1 % -> Day 2 % Change
Temur Reclamation 26.4% -> 21.7% -4.70%
Bant Ramp 16.7% -> 17.1% 0.40%
Mono-Green 6.6% -> 8.6% 2%
Jund Sacrifice 5.7% -> 5.9% 0.20%
Rakdos Knights 5.3% -> 7.2% 1.90%
Azorius Control 4% -> 5.9% 1.90%
Rakdos Sacrifice 2.8% -> 5.9% 3.10%

A few notes:

  • We combined similar decks here for overview purposes. Mono-Green is represented as one here, but the deck actually comes in two distinct flavors. There’s the more aggressive version, dubbed Stompy, that includes Gingerbrute, Syr Faren, the Hengehammer and Giant Growth, while the Monsters variant has fewer one drops and a heavier top end. Both builds saw similar success.
  • Companions. Overall, companions have largely fallen out of favor. Two Jund Sacrifice players who advanced to Day Two were playing Jegantha, the Wellspring, as was one Rakdos Sacrifice player. Three Azorius Control players chose Yorion, Sky Nomad as their companion, but one advanced.

The Best of Day Two

Let’s start with one of the surprise decks of the weekend that did well.

The breakout deck of Players Tour Online 3, Hall of Famer William “Huey” Jensen took Orzhov Yorion to a 6-3 finish yesterday. The deck marks the return of Doom Foretold to competitive Standard, and it "combos" with Treacherous Blessing to create a draw engine. Add in a helping of other strong permanents as well as the utility of Kaya, Orzhov Usurper, and you have a strong control deck. Add in Yorion, Sky Nomad to flicker all those permanents in and out of play, and you have a deck that's breaking wide open a previously established Standard.

Temur Reclamation hasn’t changed much, though Asahara opted to include Nightpack Ambusher in the maindeck, which was one of the open questions for the deck coming off of last week. While Temur Reclamation lost some metagame share from Day One to Day Two, it’s still arguably the best deck in the format.

Mardu Knights has floated in and out of the competitive Standard metagame for the better part of a year now, but it was a more streamlined Rakdos version that showed up in force at Players Tour Online 4. It was a surprise third in Day One submissions, and managed to improve its metagame share in Day Two. The deck gives up some power to go wide with Inspiring Veteran and Worthy Knight, but makes up for it with a more consistent mana base and the awesome power of Embercleave. It took Antonio Del Moral León to a 7-2 finish on Day One and is poised for more success today. It was a sorely needed boost for red aggro. Just five mono-red players advanced to Day Two, with one of those even going back to the Cavalcade of Calamity days.

Finally, let’s highlight Richie Robert Ong’s Selesnya Adventures brew, a deck unheard of in many months on the Standard circuit. But with a 6-3 finish for Ong, it’s proof there’s still room to find success going rogue in Standard. Edgewall Innkeeper is still an extremely powerful card, and the Selesnya deck plays 15 adventure cards to pay it off. The deck is aggressive and goes with March of the Multitudes. It presents a truly unique challenge for opponents, and is just the latest angle that players are finding to combat Wilderness Reclamation.

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