Well, as I was writing the inaugural Friday Flyer last week, I took a peek at the schedule to see who was writing this week. Lo and behold, I discovered myself! I suppose it’s a good thing that I was doing that. To be honest, I hadn’t planned on putting any time into this Standard format at all at this point, planning to favor Expanded, but with Oaks so not-far-away, I concluded that simply wasn’t a viable option for content coverage and spent my weekend getting up to speed on the new Standard format.
It’s a pretty wild place! We saw the first major tournament of the SM-on format play out in Melbourne this weekend, and it was over early enough (bless the time changes) to affect some of this weekend’s Cup metas. We saw that event feature myriad decks with some level of success, but it’s not really any surprise given this rotation is the biggest shake to the Standard format in many, many years. Vikavolt/Rayquaza took home the title Down Under, and perhaps that’s not surprising, as the new format seems to be shaping up as a battle of broken Abilities (given Garbotoxin has retired to Expanded, this is not a surprise itself).
My brother Alex will be here later this week with his debut article, going over the events of Melbourne in more detail as someone who was in the room, but I’m going to take a run over some of the decks from the format today. First off, I want to talk through how the different entities in the format right now “interact” with each other—it’s one of the better sections I think I’ve ever written for UG, so I hope you’ll read it before getting to the lists. There are a few Zoroark concepts to look at, then I’m going to offer lists for a testing gauntlet, since I think we’re getting too close to Philadelphia to have some of these decks go completely unmentioned.
Without further ado, let’s take a dive into it.
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