We're exactly seven days out from what are shaping up to be four action-packed tournaments on Duelistgroundz.com. In a week, individual (DSP) and team (ToC) playoffs for Season 2 of DGz's War League will begin. Remember the Seven Days articles on Metagame? We're bringing those back, bitches. Big things are going on.
Seasonal Playoffs - Goat
For the past month or so, four duelists have vied for the title of DGz Master Duelist in Goat Format. At the end of October, Soul (ESPN) and Shining Blue-eyes (KSP) became the first duelists to reach the Master rank, with MMF (ESPN) following closely behind. Shining Blue-eyes found himself on the bad side of numerous devastating upsets, knocking him back into Platinum and out of playoff qualification, and for a while, it looked like HyperBeam (SOS) would take his place, but back-to-back losses to Silverdude and ACP knocked him down as well, leaving Soul and MMF as the only qualifying players. Neither duelist is too far behind to make the comeback in the next seven days, but closer to Master rank than both of them is a new and improved ACP (unaffiliated), who had spent most of October and November hovering in the middle of the top 10 and suffering Elo decay from inactivity.
With one Goat Control player and one Chaos Control player now more or less locked into Master rank for the remainder of the season, the playoff metagame will largely depend on which one, if any, of these dark horse candidates finishes their lofty climb to the top in the next seven days. The biggest question on everyone's mind is undoubtedly Thunder Dragon versus Shining Angel, a debate that has raged on for the entire season, primarily between MMF and ACP. Thunder Dragon has one spot in playoffs secured in the hands of MMF and could gain another in HyperBeam, while Shining Angel is currently relying on ACP as its only potential representative. With so many duelists abandoning their Airknight Parshaths in favor of Chaos Sorcerers in this day and age, it will be up to Soul and SBE to prove that pure Goat Control can still compete in the 2017 metagame.
Seasonal Playoffs - Current
While ESPN now rules over the individual Goat rankings with an iron fist, All the Outs has been dominating the current format rankings by the same margin, with Master Duelists Mistleteinn and Chevalier de Fromage holding the #1 and #2 spots respectively. Potential 3rd seeds include Lighty (SOS), Tr!stan (ESPN), and Noxjja (BC), who held the #3 spot before suffering harsh losses to MMF and Tr!stan of ESPN.
If Noxjja makes the climb to Master Duelist, he will be the only qualified Pendulum Magician player in a field of SPYRAL duelists, mirroring the top cut breakdowns of YCS San Diego and ARG St. Louis. Curiously absent from the top of the rankings are Trickstars, a deck that claimed a ring at St. Louis as well as many top 32 spots at San Diego, but that has yet to make any substantial waves on DGz.
Tournament of Champions - Goat
A new and exciting rivalry will come to a head in the Goat Format Tournament of Champions as All the Outs and ESPN meet once again to control each others' goats and talk mad amounts of trash while they're at it. These teams fought it out to a brutal last-heart standoff in Season 1, with ATO ultimately getting the win, and have gone back-and-forth in Goat-only wars in Season 2, with ATO up 3-2 in the head-to-head for the season. For most of September, ESPN's Soul and ATO's Chevalier de Fromage traded the #1 spot back and forth before CDF ultimately gave up on Goat in favor of the current format, deciding that he could no longer stand to play a format in which he had lost twice to Silverdude. With Morphing Jar's heir nowhere to be found, ATO will be looking at Personofsecrets, MattK, and TheAntiAntimetaAzn to hold it down in ToC, while ESPN will likely field Tr!stan and the Based Loli, former rivals sharing a team banner for the first time, in addition of course to Soul and MMF.
Tournament of Champions - Current
In the wake of the mid-season disqualification of Lemo Pear Gang, All the Outs took up the reins as the current format team to beat, currently boasting a 4-1 record as well as the only two Master-ranked duelists in the format. Trailing closely behind is Bullet Club, with a projected end-of-season 4-1 record as well. The action continues on December 1st, when these teams are on track to meet for the very first time in the upcoming current format Tournament of Champions, and it's really looking like anyone's game. CDF and Mistleteinn will have a slew of current format powerhouses to contend with, including Noxjja, Milk, Mr. Maestro, and JJ.
Alpha Omega Memorial
It would be remiss of me not to mention the very special Goat tournament that is currently winding down to its final rounds. We're down to our final 6 in the Alpha Omega Memorial, with Tr!stan (ESPN), Mascis (TGC), rei (SOS), and Death Sentence (SOS) currently duking it out in Losers Quarterfinals. The last remaining one of them will face Soul (ESPN) in Losers Finals, who is extremely hungry for his runback against Gojira (unaffiliated), currently waiting for him on the winner's side of Grand Finals.
Perhaps appropriately, the AOM metagame was a bit of a throwback, with Goat Control variants taking up 31% of the field as opposed to Chaos Control's 10%. Of the remaining duelists, four are playing Goat Control while two have decided to go rogue with Beastdown and Last Turn, respectively. The Last Turn deck is, surprisingly enough, currently sitting comfortable in Grand Finals in the hands of Gojira, while Soul awaits in Losers Finals with a more traditional Goat Control build.