Player's Championship Qualifier #4 Recap

Player’s Championship Qualifier 4 Recap


Modern Horizons 3 is right around the corner and what’s a better way to celebrate than having a send-off tournament for the current Modern format? With 24 players in attendance, we had quite the variety of decks with 7 unique archetypes in the top 8. Modern Horizons 3 has the potential to completely change the format if it’s anything like the first or second Modern Horizons sets. Yet our champion Michael Giles dominated the tournament with a deck we haven’t seen in quite some time: Blue Tron!

Michael Giles – Mono Blue Tron (1st)

Matthew Bailey – Esper Goryo’s Vengeance (2nd)

Tijler Dejong – Amulet Titan (3rd- 4th)

Christopher Brackley – 4 Colour Control (3rd- 4th)

Michael Cameron – 5 Colour Zoo (5th- 8th)

Leah Wiseman – 5 Colour Zoo (5th- 8th)

Connor Cheney – RG Prowess (5th- 8th)

Frank LeBlanc – Hardened Scales (5th- 8th)

It isn’t often that an off the wall deck like Mono Blue Tron comes out and takes over an established metagame, but Michael Giles was able to do just that! An expert with the deck, piloting it for years, he was able to leverage his experience into a 1st place finish! Michael was nice enough to give me some time to answer a couple questions and give us some insight into the deck in the current format.


T: So, I know you’ve been playing Blue Tron for as long as I’ve known you. What is it about the deck that you prefer over the more traditional green version, or even another big ramp strategy like Cabal Coffers?

M: I think of Blue Tron as the swiss army control deck of the format. I’ve tried both G Tron and Coffers builds, and I think the one thing U Tron has going for it is that it problem solves in every game that it plays, usually not doing the same thing twice. I usually label the versions I play as “Mono U Control.” I feel all of these decks are surviving on the power level of The One Ring. U Tron just happens to have received the gift of the best free spells from blue to pair with the power of that artifact. A happy coincidence that is allowing the deck to survive in a format that has been a bit hard on control decks. There was a time between MH2 and LotR where U Tron was quite poorly positioned in the meta.

T: I don’t know if you’ve seen any Modern Horizons 3 cards yet, but if you have does anything stand out as an include for the deck? Do you think Blue Tron could be a contender in the metagame going forward into Modern Horizons 3?


M: The new set looks sweet with a lot of cool new cards that will likely bring in a few new decks! For U Tron specifically, I will probably try out Kozilek’s Command as it appears very versatile. It not being blue probably makes it a singleton and then it’s a question if it might be too slow without the Eldrazi Temples. I would love for one of the new lands to work out but they probably don’t fit into the U Tron mana base sadly. I must admit that the set looks to have had quite a focus on limited.
In all honesty, U Tron has never been a contender and it won’t be with MH3. The barrier of it being a really hard deck to play properly will always keep it to the sidelines. Big mana control has to be a way of life and many other decks with similar or better win percentages are easier to pick up. The deck lets you play your favourite cards which ends up being your downfall.
I will add that I continue to play U Tron as I’ve really embraced aspiringspike’s life advice post: “Life’s too short to not play your pet deck.” Or something along those lines. The deck creates a lot of happy memories for me in a format that I enjoy, though they might not always be happy for my opponent. Just keep in mind that both players are there to win the game and at the end of the day if you can be kind to yourself and them, then you are still winning.

I couldn’t have put it any better! Thank you and congratulations to Michael Giles on the finish and for qualifying for the Player’s Championship, and thank you to the rest of our competitors! Join us on June 15th for our next Modern Qualifier where you can earn Leaderboard Points and win your spot in our December Player’s Championship!



Written By: Travis Benedict
Pro Tour Competitor, Cat Lover