Tournament Report: Top 8 Standard 2022 Decks from TGS Open 8/22

Over the weekend, tournament host TGS (The Gaming Stadium) put on a free-to-play Standard 2022 tournament with a $1000 CAD prize pool. The tournament drew an impressive 186 entrants according to its MTGMelee page, resulting in some heated competition and pitting a wide range of players and decks against each other.

In this article, we’ll break down the metagame and take a look at the top 8 decklists from the TGS tournament. This is the largest Standard 2022 event we’ve had to review in quite some time, so it provides us with a unique opportunity to examine what competitively-minded players think are the best things to be doing in the format.

It’s important to note that although MTG Arena currently only supports Standard 2022 in the best-of-one format, this tournament was played out through best-of-three matches. Therefore, all of the decklists we will be reviewing include a full sideboard and are designed for best-of-three play. Players looking to adapt these decks for the best-of-one Arena ladder would do well to review the sideboards of each deck and make changes accordingly.

Metagame

Archetype w/GuideNumber of DecksPercentage of FieldWinrate
Izzet Dragons (Guide)2313.9%52.6%
Mono Green Aggro (Guide)1810.8%64.6%
Dimir Control (Guide)127.2%39.5%
Mono White Aggro (Guide)116.6%43.2%
Orzhov Midrange (Guide)84.8%42.1%
Orzhov Control (Guide)84.8%48.6%
Mardu Midrange (Guide)84.8%44.44%
Gruul Aggro (Guide)74.2%44.1%
Jund Midrange74.2%53.1%

For those who have been following the Standard 2022 meta, this table should look pretty familiar. Izzet Dragons, which was an early standout in the format, has been pushed down in the Arena BO1 meta to some extent because having no access to the sideboard means the deck struggles to pack enough answers for highly aggressive decks like Mono White and Mono Green while still being able to grind against more controlling shells like Dimir and Orzhov. In best-of-three tournaments, the deck has much more flexibility to adapt to the matchup, so it’s no surprise to see the Dragons archetype at the top of the metagame share at this event. However,

Meanwhile, Mono Green and Mono White continue to make up a strong share of the metagame. Mono Green had the highest winrate among well-represented archetypes in the tournament at an impressive 64.6% against non-mirror opponents. Even in BO3, it’s clear that Mono Green is a strong choice.

Besides Dragons, control decks were reasonably well represented at the TGS event, but generally posted less than .500 winrates. Other than Doomskar, the sweepers in 2022 are relatively clunky- a factor which is made even worse by the heavy presence of creature lands like Lair of the Hydra and Faceless Haven. Blood on the Snow is an undeniably powerful card, but decks like Mono Green are extremely fast and six mana is a big ask. Even if the control player is able to set up for the wrath, tapping out against a Lair of the Hydra leaves them in a very ugly position. Spot removal might seem like a clean answer, but even a single well-timed Snakeskin Veil can effectively end the game.

Top 8

RankPlayerDecklistRecord
1Tomas PokornyMono Green Aggro10-1
2Erik CoomberJeskai Midrange9-2
3Joel Enrique ArauzMono Green Aggro 8-2
4Jakub PuzioMono Black Control8-2
5Quentin LeroyIzzet Dragons7-2
6Sylvain BoissieuxOrzhov Aggro7-2
7Yuya MurayamaJund Midrange6-3
8Richard NguyenIzzet Dragons6-3

Although it’s no surprise to see Mono Green and Izzet Dragons all over the Top 8, there are still some interesting innovations to be found here. In particular, Eric Coomber’s Jeskai Midrange deck splashes white to the Izzet Dragons shell to include Adult Gold Dragon, a half-Goldspan Dragon, half-Baneslayer Angel, resulting in a deck that is more focused on playing Dragons as a tribe rather than the typical tempo shells.

Jakob Puzio adapted the popular Orzhov Treasure decks into a mono-black shell which brings Tergrid, God of Fright in from the sideboard in relevant matches. Meanwhile, Sylvain Boissieux did well with an Orzhov shell that steers away from the treasure/value plan entirely to play the cleric tribe and execute a gameplan that is highly disruptive and aggressive at the same time.

See below for links to all of the Top 8 decklists from the event.

Top 8 Decklists

Paul

Dude from Vermont who likes to play Magic and Escape from Tarkov. Musician, writer, and gamer. Submit feedback or corrections to @Paul on the Discord.