Hello and Welcome! Click the links above to read about VSL, the schedule, and the standings. Click here if you want decklists and to watch the video archives you can click here. Meanwhile, if you just want to hear about this week’s matches then read on.
Some people have asked for a way to follow the Vintage Super League without watching all the matches every week. These match recaps are for them.
Week 7 marked the third time players got to submit new decks for league play, but more importantly it was the first new set of decks since Khans of Tarkir was published on Magic Online. There was much speculation about Treasure Cruise, Dig Through Time, and even Jeskai Ascendancy and the week 7 matches did not disappoint as players who played Khans of Tarkir cards in their match went 4-0, while players who did not went just 1-5.
Eric v Rich
Rich finally moved away from his trusty Control Slaver deck, opting instead for a ride on a boat full of gold. His game 1 Treasure Cruise delivered up both a counterspell to stop Eric from playing the Time vault / Voltaic Key and also a Time Walk to provide the extra turn his Delver needed to be lethal.
Eric resolved an Ancestral Recall early in game 2, but Rich drew his own Ancestral and followed it up with a Treasure Cruise. That wave of card advantage gave him the ability to Force of Will Eric’s next three spells, though he only needed to stop 2 of them to win the game.
Chris v Luis
Chris brought a saucy home brew to play this week while Luis went back to a Young Pyromancer Gush/Bond list similar to the one he ran in weeks 1-3, but spiced up with 3 copies of Dig Through Time. Chris seemed to be riding a pair of Dark Confidants to victory in game 1, but Luis was able to force through a Fire // Ice to kill them. It required playing a Mana Crypt and a Yawgmoth’s Will to get it back from the graveyard so it seemed like it might be a pyrric victory since Luis only had 5 life left. However, Chris saw an opportunity to knock Luis down to just one land (a Library) by blowing up all his artifacts with Engineered Explosives and he went for it. What Chris didn’t know is that there isn’t a single card in Luis’s main deck that could remove that Mana Crypt from play, so he was almost certainly going to lose 2 coin flips before he could take control of the game and kill Chris. In practice, however, Luis had a Bolt for Chris’s third Confidant and a Force of Will for his Vendilion Clique and suddenly Luis had an active Library, starting Digging Through Time, and came all the way back to win the game 10-ish turns later.
Luis was once again studying at the Library of Alexandria in game 2. Chris had Vendilion Clique with Karakas, but Luis was able to ignore that while building his own board with a Young Pyromancer and a Jace. Chris never drew anything meaningful after his opening while Luis was drawing 3 cards per turn so the game got out of control fairly quickly.
Randy v Josh
Randy went back to Merfolk (but with Treasure Cruise) for this set while Josh played his first non-combo deck of the season: a Pyromancer / Gush list with 3 copies of Dig Through Time. It’s pretty interesting that he and Luis did not work together this time, but they wound up with very similar decklists.
The coin flip was huge in game 1. Josh won it and was able to play a turn 1 Young Pyromancer off a Mox. When he then top-decked a Time Walk on turn 2 things got very ugly, very quickly. In game 2 Randy missed an opportunity to Cursecatcher a Merchant Scroll and the resulting Ancestral Recall pulled him a bit too far ahead. The Cursecatcher did later nail a Dig Through Time, but only because Josh let it so he could clear a path for Yawgmoth’s Will (rebuying the Ancestral).
Bob v Steve
Week 6 saw Steve’s first loss and Bob’s first win, but with 10 great players in the league every match is a tough one. Spectators were happy to see Bob show up with Dark Confidants in his deck. Bob was actually playing from Germany, having travelled to Essen Spiel on business and then set his alarm for 5am so he could get up and play. Bob’s first turn was absurd: Island, Ancestral Recall, Black Lotus, Mox Pearl, Jace the Mind Sculptor, Brainstorm myself with Jace, and oh by the way Mental Misstep your Sol Ring. Steve was unable to resolve a spell (other than Mox Sapphire) before Bob set up Vault / Key.
Game 2 was a blow-out in the other direction, with Steve’s “Angel City Vault” deck Tinkering out an Inkwell Leviathan (with Pyroblast backup) on turn 3. In game 3 Steve kept a hand with 8 mana by turn 2, but Bob resolved Ancestral and Dark Confidant before Steve drew any action and nothing meaningful was resolving for Steve after that.
Dave v Tom
Dave is running the same “Angel City Vault” list as Steve (which is also similar to what Eric is playing, fwiw). In game 1 he had a choice between Turn 1 Wheel and turn 1 Tinker for Inkwell Leviathan. Dave went for the Wheel, but later regretted it when Tom drew significantly more gas than he did. Tom’s Delver plus Dave’s own Mana Crypt whittled him down from 20 before Dave could do anything else meaningful.
In game 2 Tom had to choose whether to crack his fetch land on turn 1 for Underground Sea (in order to cast Thoughtseize) or Volcanic Island (in order to cast Young Pyromancer). He went for the Pyromancer, but was punished by a turn 2 Tinker for Inkwell Leviathan which he couldn’t quite race.
Over the course of game 3 Tom went on two Treasure Cruises and resolved Ancestral Recall (and Gush). This resulted in a steady supply of counters, and when Dave’s Yawgmoth’s Will ran into one after everything else had already been countered, the game was effectively over.