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Great Magic Writing of the Week, June 23


A staggering amount of Magic content is published each day each day on a plethora of content sites, blogs, podcasts, and discussion forums. No matter how honest an effort you make, it's easy to fall behind and miss incredible articles because there just isn't enough time to read everything.

To that end, we've collected some of the best articles of the week covering a broad range of topics. If you're looking for articles, these are the ones you don't want to miss!

On Introducing Modern Masters

Grand Prix Las Vegas coverage is going into its second day. Before you check it out, familiarize yourself with the format with the help of James Arnold and his Modern Masters infographic. Which cards are being reprinted and what sets were they pulled from? Which cards got shiny new art? James answers these questions and more in typical infographic fashion.

GatheringMagic.com: James Arnold (@thatguyjames2) - Modern Masters Infographic

On Living Vorthos

Join MJ Scott on her Selesnya day trip to Wahkeena Falls for guild-themed photos, vorthos-y ruminations and more! Explore the beautiful wildlife and scenery and enjoy MJ's always witty commentary on the experience. This will be MJ's last article for the time being, and this is one you don't want to miss out on:

GatheringMagic.com: MJ Scott (@moxymtg) - Selesnya Day Trip Photo Gallery

Doing my best to look snootily ageless. I mean, Elvish.

On Pauper Rogues

Pauper is a popular format on Magic Online, largely because it is a very inexpensive and relatively well-defined format. Alex Ulman is here to tell you that even though the top dogs are here to stay, there's still plenty of room to brew in Pauper. He takes you through a handful of decks which have started popping up in Daily Events and talks about what might be done to streamline them and turn them into real players in the Pauper metagame. If you want to give Pauper a shot, or just try something a little off the beaten path, these decks are a great place to start.

StarCityGames.com: Alex Ulman (@nerdtothecore) - The Poor Rogues

Right now is a great time to be playing Pauper. The Daily Events routinely have over 25 players with 3-1 or 4-0 records, helping to provide a clear image of the metagame. These decks largely adhere to the known, coloring well within established lines. This makes sense since a large number of people playing in these Daily Events are doing so to earn Qualifying Points (for Magic Online Championship Qualifiers) and to grind out packs to sell to fuel their digital habit.

Going with a known and proven quantity is the logical decision, especially since there is no benefit to "breaking Pauper" since Daily Events are currently the largest events. There is no Open Series to test for, just four measly rounds. Staying within the comfort zone is, from a value perspective, the right call.

There are some intrepid players out there who are looking to discover what Wizards has seeded in their commons. Players who are driven to win on their own terms, believing that they have found something better. Sometimes these decks catch on for a week or two, like the stray marks in a grade schooler's coloring book. But who wants to be beholden to lines? Let's venture outside.

On Pro Tour Dragon's Maze

Getting ready for a Pro Tour can be a very trying experience. Qualifying is hard enough, but then you have to learn the format, test decks, practice drafting, and make the decisions that will define your performance on the Pro Tour. Are you prepared to make the right decisions when it counts? Shaun McLaren has provided a unique opportunity to find out, with his "choose your own adventure" report from Pro Tour Dragon's Maze:

ManaDeprived.com: Shaun McLaren - Choose Your Own Pro Tour Dragon's Maze

On Father's Day

Did you celebrate Father's Day last weekend? Avacyn and Sorin certainly did. Polish Tamales new comic series, Tonkatsu Taco, is well drawn, well written, and generally filled with humor related to Magic culture. This time, it's all about the feel-goods. Check out the rest of Tonkatsu Taco, and more of Polish Tamales' work on his Tumblr.

LegitMTG.com: Polish Tamales (@PolishTamales) - Father's Day

On The Ninth District

What has Gideon been up to in the City of Guilds? He teame up with the Boros Legion and has gotten himself into a mess of trouble with the Gruul Clans in a battle within the ninth district of Ravnica. Who will be standing in the end and what's Gideon planning? Adam Lee tells the story in his article this week:

DailyMTG.com: Adam Lee - Battle for the Ninth

Gideon wiped the dirt and dust from his face and smiled.

"They took the bait," Anza said excitedly, as pieces of the building rained down on their heads. Broken bricks lay strewn about them; they were barely visible to each other in the dust-filled air.

"That's one thing about the Gruul you can count on," Gideon said. Another massive club swing caved in a nearby wall, which sent debris everywhere and snapped three huge support beams. The upper floors fell in around them like an avalanche—chairs, tables, and crockery clattered about in a torrent. They could hear a giant bellow with battle-rage outside. He was getting closer.

If you have suggestions for next week's recap you can mention us on Twitter, or share throughout the week in the comments below.

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