The sudden dominance of Core Set 2020 archetypes has come to a halt in week two of the Magic Pro League (MPL) M20 split, reverting back to War of the Spark.
Week one of the M20 split featured six Orzhov Vampire decks during the round-robin matches. But in the Emerald Division, it’s all about Esper and Mono-Red. Throwing Scapeshift and vamps out the window, the eight players in Emerald are relying on old favorites to get into the top four.
- Jessica Estephan: Esper Hero
- Eric Froehlich: Esper Hero
- Alexander Hayne: Esper Hero
- Martin Jůza: Mono-Red Aggro
- Seth Manfield: Esper Control
- Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa: Mono-Red Aggro
- Luis Salvatto: Jeskai Planeswalkers
- Shoota Yasooka: Esper Control
Other than Salvatto, every player in the MPL Emerald Division brought either Esper Hero, Esper Control, or Mono-Red Aggro to the round-robin matches. All of these are decks known to stand a chance against Orzhov Vampires and Scapeshift. Jeskai Planeswalkers might be able to prevail over Esper and Burn, but history has shown Salvatto will have to be on his A-game to make that happen.
What makes this week’s entries so interesting is that they’re practically a carbon copy of the metagame within the WotS split. The only deck missing from the list is Simic Ramp. Many people in the MTG community have voiced concerns over the staleness of the meta, and this week’s M20 split reinforces those concerns.
The fall rotation is right around the corner, though, and it should bring a huge meta shakeup in Standard. Mono-Red will take the biggest hit while Esper loses Teferi, Hero of Dominaria and imperative dual lands that provide tempo.
But until Throne of Eldraine is released and the Standard rotation goes into effect, it seems like the meta will remain the same. Perhaps someone will bring either Orzhov Vampires or Scapeshift to the table in the top four of week two’s M20 split. At this rate, Simic Ramp or Simic Nexus just might show up, too.
The round-robin matches for the M20 split in the Emerald Division run through Wednesday, Aug. 13. The top four players will then battle it out in a double-elimination bracket with the winner earning a day-one bye to the MTG Arena Mythic Championship V. Matches can be watched on Magic’s Twitch channel on Aug. 17 at 2pm CT.