Mid-Week Pauper Meta Report: Mediocrity

About this series: This is a weekly report on the online pauper meta. The data it uses are from last week Wednesday to this past Wednesday. It looks at the data that I collect from a selection of dailies. I watch the replays on MTGO to figure out how each person did, not just the 3-1s and 4-0s that Wizards publishes. This allows us to see the whole iceberg and figure out how well each deck did in total. Now, this data is just for this week and just from this data, so it does ignore the other 3-1/4-0 results which means it is not perfect. Additionally, the conclusions in this article are just based on this week, and as the meta is fluid, the top decks shift. This is intended to see what decks are performing well this week and is not necessarily a reflection of the deck’s overall strength.

This article uses data from just the 7-5 afternoon and 7-6 daily results. Sadly MTGO crashed in the 2 other dailies I tried to get, so we are running off a data deficit this week.

I didn’t get as much data as I would have liked this week, but surprisingly the data is not that swayed at all. For example, look at the graphs below.

Almost every single deck is about where we would expect, with the exception of a resurgent Burn, and no did gained or lost more than 4% prominence. Most decks simply did average, not too great and not too bad, which is heavily demonstrated in the graph below.

Look at that consistency. With the exception of MBC, most decks are simply in the expected average range. Affinity, Stompy, and UB Angler all did better, but they were not something exceptional. Most of them are just better than you would normally expect. I mainly attribute this to variance, but it does show something about the meta. It could signify a balancing out of the meta where more deck choices are viable. Now Pauper is usually this way where there are at least a few decks that are viable choices of different types of decks. UB Angler is one of the more interesting of these decks as recently it has had much more success. I think a lot of that would be attributed to less Burn and MBC in the meta, but both were still very popular this week. UB Angler is the deck I am most interested to watch over the next few weeks. The deck that I have been watching closely is Esper Fae. Here are its results from last week:

It didn’t do close to as bad against Delver this week, but it did do something that surprised me at least a bit. A 7-0 record against MBC. Now, I have stated in the past that I believed the deck was closer to 50-50 (with maybe a bigger edge for Esper), but this was not the case at all. Last week it went 3-3, so maybe a fluke, but this definitely gives an edge to Esper, for as long as it is in the meta. With the exclusion of MBC, it had a 43.3% win rate, not great. It did have a terrible record against Affinity, as expected, and it did badly against other aggro decks. More proof of being weak to aggro comes in the next graphs.

As a disclaimer, this counts the turn somebody concedes so the game may have actually gone on a turn or more longer. Over the last week we saw a much higher portion of games end on turn 5. This is in contrast to the past few weeks which have had turn 6 and 7 be the most popular. On the graph with the past 3 weeks, we see the combo really becoming possible on turn 5 and the threat remaining high until the games end. In addition, there is a larger and larger chance that they are just able to win by beating down. On the other hand, the deck loses a ton on turn 4 and 5 and it get harder to beat them the longer the games go on. As more data has been collected, the numbers are starting to show that the wat to win is just to beat down. If your deck can’t win quick, then it probably can’t win against Esper Fae. I think this is one of the main reasons it was so good in the Treasure Cruise meta, the best decks were all slow and people were playing to draw 3, not deal 3. Let me know if you want more analysis on Esper Fae or whether you would like to see the stats on a different deck.

Enjoy, and thanks for reading! –Najay1


1. Affinity – Stats: 8.28% Prominence; 50.00% Cash Rate; 56.52% Win Rate. This is a deck that has consistently done average. Not great, not bad, just average. I think it is going to start doing better as it has great matchups against Delver and Esper Fae whereas it does not have great matchups against Burn and MBC. This is a list that I certainly expect to start doing better as the meta shifts to more and more Delver. Expect strong results if the meta stays more Delver.

2. UB Angler – Stats: 6.51% Prominence; 45.45% Cash Rate; 59.46% Win Rate. One of the decks that has done much better recently after a shaky start. Just a little while ago I was off of this deck, but it has put up very promising results recently. Now it is important to note that this week it did not have a huge amount of pilots – 11 – so that there could be variance in these results. That win rate is quite strong and I am going to be heavily watching this deck going forward and how it plays against other main decks.

3. Stompy – Stats: 6.51% Prominence; 45.45% Cash Rate; 54.05% Win Rate. Stompy is one of the better decks recently, although it has not been played as much as I believe it should. It is fighting for the spot of the best aggro deck in the meta with Affinity. Now I think currently this deck is in a better spot, with MBC and Burn being popular and all, although that may change as Delver (a 50-50 matchup) becomes more popular.


1. MBC – Stats: 11.83% Prominence; 20.00% Cash Rate; 40.00% Win Rate. There was only one deck that was bad enough with a high enough sample size to really be called a loser. That deck is MBC. The deck had a high popularity again, but it did not put up the results that we would expect. Now small sample size is less of a concern here as MBC had lots of pilots, but dailies can vary widely in what decks are there and variance is still a factor, as always. Maybe with more Delver (as this week) the deck could do better, but it doesn’t look promising.

Tribes to Watch

Elves – Stats: 2.96% Prominence; 40.00% Cash Rate; 50.00% Win Rate. This is a very interesting deck to me as it doesn’t seem to be a great deck in a meta that is full of MBC. Still, the deck has done quite decently throughout the past season. I do worry that the deck is not the difficult to hate out (similar to W Tokens) even with Spidersilk Armor. It simply is weak to most of the black sweepers, it is weak to targeted removal, and it can run out of gas without Distant Melody or if it is countered. An interesting deck to look out for.

Goblins – Stats: 2.96% Prominence; 60.00% Cash Rate; 73.68% Win Rate. This is one of my personal favorite decks and I have found it to be quite strong in the recent meta. This week’s results are great and it builds upon a few weeks of promising results. At that same point, I don’t think that the deck is necessarily better than Affinity or Stompy as it is weaker to hate, doesn’t have a great way to regain gas, and can fail to create too much immediate pressure.

Brew of the Week

[d title=”BW Rebels by mebigunot”]
2 Amrou Seekers
4 Aven Riftwatcher
4 Blightspeaker
2 Defiant Falcon
1 Nightwind Glider
3 Ramosian Lieutenant
3 Ramosian Sergeant
3 Rathi Trapper
1 Thermal Glider
1 Zealot il-Vec

2 Doom Blade

3 Bonesplitter
1 Serrated Arrows

4 Bound in Silence
1 Journey to Nowhere

3 Evolving Wilds
1 Haunted Fengraf
4 Orzhov Basilica
9 Plains
4 Scoured Barrens
1 Secluded Steppe
2 Swamp
1 Terramorphic Expanse

1 Nightwind Glider
1 Zealot il-Vec
2 Serrated Arrows
3 Circle of Protection: Red
3 Disenchant
2 Nihil Spellbomb
3 Standard Bearer [/d]

This is a deck that I find very interesting. This list is a highly synergistic deck that can play various roles. It has the semi-potential to play the beatdown role while really wanting to play the long game in a toolbox type strategy. The deck has lots of tools that is able to search up without too much trouble. In addition, it has lots of great value creatures that can be good against a variety of decks with tappers, pro-black and pro-red creatures, white intimidate, and the like. And it can do all of those without having to deal with counters. The one thing I really do not like in this deck is the landbase. It is sporadic without enough coherence to be really great. I would much rather have a more streamlined landbase that doesn’t have the majority of their lands ETB tapped. There is a good chance that you will play a tapland T1, bounce it with the Basilica, and then play it again. You are just losing to aggro decks at that point and it takes away any aggro potential the deck could have.


PCT Results

The PCT is a weekly tournament hosted on Gatherling.com by LongTimeGone. It occurs Tuesday at 8 pm est.