Perhaps due to the short time span between the announcement and the start of the event, we ended up with only 17 participants, including myself. Nonetheless, the event was a lot of fun, and the winner walked away with one of the bigger prizes I've ever given out: 14 tickets!
This past week, the two remaining participants battled it out in the Finals, and Adner's Esper Mayhem was crowned the winner!
Esper was probably the most dominant archetype in Standard Pauper back when the Shards of Alara block was part of the format, and it's easy to see why. Using Sanctum Gargoyle, one can recur the excellent "spell-artifacts" Courier's Capsule and Executioner's Capsule, as well as looping multiples of the gargoyles themselves. That set also featured one of the best removal spells at Common: Oblivion Ring. To this solid core Adner added the excellent Gatekeepers from Dragon's Maze as well as additional recursion via Deputy of Acquittals. The result is a powerful Control deck capable of handling most any threat and equipped to generate tons of card advantage over the course of a game.
This event was a lot of fun, and there is already discussion about what format to do next. In the future, I would make two small changes:
- Advertise the event a few weeks in advance so as to generate maximum exposure.
- Allow players to change their decklist each week rather than requiring them to keep it the same throughout the event.