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MetaZoo Caster Cup Recap!

Hello again my caster friends! Well, the $250,000 Casters Cup just wrapped up in Fort Worth, and I can honestly say it was truly inspiring to see hundreds and hundreds of MetaZoo players, all with their custom spellbooks, fourth wall objects and a surprising number of bonsai trees; which, let me just say is wonderful… as long as you keep your trees alive until next year! Now, let’s get into it! What were people playing, what does the meta look like and where are we heading?

 

 

From my own personal experience and from what other players were observing, Casters Cup 2022 was all about Lightning. All three of the big winners – Easton, Dylan and Dominic – were all playing Lightning. I think the top 10 may all have been Lightning as well, but I haven’t seen the deck lists yet.

Radioactive HornetsQuetzalcoatlus

It was inescapable. We all had our suspicions, with Water and Frog being dominant up until now and Radioactive Hornets arriving in the Wilderness set, it only makes sense that Lightning was going to be a top contender, and boy it was. I entered with my own Hornet and Quetz spellbook, played all eight rounds on Day 1, ended up in the top 20 percent but just missed the top cut. In six of those eight rounds, I was matched into Lightning for a mirror match. And if you haven’t played a top tier Lightning deck mirror, I will tell you right now it is truly horrifying at times. Pound for pound, Quetzalcoatlus is one of the best beasties in the game, possessing not only Fleet and Flight, but also First Strike and swinging for 80 to 100 damage if the Terra is in play; it’s incredibly hard to deal with. On top of that, when you swing your own Quetz into another, you flip a coin to see which Quetz will actually strike first (because both have first strike) and that coin flip can instantly decide who’s taking the game.

Watching the finals on Sunday was as exciting as the Super Bowl for a card fanatic. All of these players are absolutely top notch and Lightning makes for incredibly exciting and unpredictable games. I was alone in my room, jumping up and down cheering on my friends all through that final round. I’m not usually that enthusiastic in life but how could I not be excited!? There was $250k on the line!

Hateful Demise

There couldn’t have been a better group of finalists and as many of us have come to expect, Easton came with tricks up his sleeve on Day 2. As I mentioned earlier, Quetz vs Quetz is a match that relies heavily on the probability of a coin flip, and Easton’s creative integration of a couple Hateful Demise to destroy Quetz and his unbelievable Unlucky Potion combat trick to control his opponents First Strike flips was a stroke of genius. I’m not gonna lie, my jaw dropped when I saw him bust that move and I had a “shake my head” moment, thinking “How did I miss that?” Truly inspiring. And huge props to Dylan for playing such incredible games with his own Lightning build. I think we can officially say that the meta has changed. Frog has lost his throne (about time!).

That’s what it’s all about folks. Study the best, learn and practice. Next year Mike says he wants to go even bigger. There are rumors of $1.25 million on the line so you’d better start practicing now. Keep an eye out for local events in your area. Mike mentioned setting up Caster Cup Qualifiers, which he’s dubbed “Towers,” across the country, so pay attention. Just like this year’s Cup had registration requirements and prerequisites, next year will too. Will you be the one to build a Lightning killer? Time to start building!

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