Feature: Block Constructed Metagame Breakdown

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The letter T!hree hundred ninety five players were in a tropical paradise. They were ready to play Magic. They were here to play Zendikar Block Constructed. This would be the only event with this format for the current Pro Tour season. Will the day be ruled by trimmed down standard decks? Or would new and exciting decks emerge from the newly explored format?

Archetype Count Percent
RG LD 1 0.25%
Allies 1 0.25%
BG Landfall 1 0.25%
White Weenie 1 0.25%
GW Tokens 1 0.25%
mono white control 1 0.25%
UGR Jace 1 0.25%
Valakut 2 0.51%
Mono red 2 0.51%
UG Control 3 0.76%
White Eldrazi 3 0.76%
UGB Landfall 4 1.01%
UB Control 6 1.52%
UR Control 6 1.52%
UGR Landfall 7 1.77%
UWG Control 17 4.30%
UGR Comet Storm 18 4.56%
GW Ramp 20 5.06%
Summoning Trap 20 5.06%
Vampires 23 5.82%
Koros 28 7.09%
green eldrazi 34 8.61%
Monument green 43 10.89%
devastating red 57 14.43%
UW Control 95 24.05%

Blue-White Control topped the list with 95 players. These decks included a full complement of Day of Judgment, Wall of Omens, Gideon Jura and Jace, the Mind Sculptor, all which have more than proven themselves powerful within multiple constructed environments. Beyond that you could see the depth of options Blue-White had to offer as these decklists diverged in their selection of creature control and counter magic. Some versions included a black splash for Consuming Vapors and Abyssal Persecutor.

The second most popular choice on the day was Devastating Red. Could this red deck win it all? Fifty-seven competitors felt this was their best bet. It combined efficient creatures like Kargan Dragonlord and Kiln Fiend, cheap removal in the forms of Staggershock and Flame Slash, and the deadly finishing power of Devastating Summons to take advantage of the slow pace that Zendikar Block Constructed had developed into. Although some players felt the summons was a bit too risky and opted to play the deck without the namesake card preferring a more traditional Red Deck Wins deck.

Third and forth were two decks with similar names, but very different game plans. Monument Green, or "the deck formerly known as Eldrazi Green," accounted for 43 decks while Green Eldrazis were piloted by 34 players. The former used Eldrazi Monument to power up its swarm of green creatures such as Leatherback Baloth, Vengevine, and River Boa, as well as Eldrazi Spawn created by Nest Invader and Kozilek's Predator. The latter played at the other end of the creature curve by hard casting Eldrazi monsters Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre and Emrakul, the Aeons Torn after ramping its mana with Eye of Ugin, Eldrazi Temple,and Eldrazi Spawn. Most of these decks stuck with mono-green builds, but color splashes for red removal or powerful blue spells, most noticeably Jace, were in the mix.

Vampires and Koros, two more decks that survived the translation from Standard to Zendikar Block Constructed, came in at fifth and sixth. Vampires was expected to take up a larger percentage of the field, but only 28 players chose to wield the power of everyone's favorite draft pick Vampire Nighthawk and his planeswalker-destroying sidekick Vampire Hexmage. Twenty-three Koros decks, a breakout hybrid of the Standard Boros Bushwhacker deck, had been combining fetch lands with Steppe Lynx and freshly retrieved Adventuring Gear (courtesy of Stoneforge Mystic) to send opponents from 20 to 0 in short order.

These were only the top 6 archetypes here in San Juan. Four more decks accounted for around 5% of the field, including Green-White Ramp, Blue-Green-Red Comet Storm , Summoning Trap, and Blue-White-Green control, and then there were the 15 archetypes making up the 40 rogue lists. This was quite the diverse field here on Day One. Will this diversity carry on through Saturday? Or will one deck rule them all? Find out in Saturday's coverage.

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