Shotgun Lotus Formats


i was getting pretty damn close to writing off magic all together and had been watching less and less of it. i thought about it increasingly little, but shotgun lotus is creating some of the most interesting content in a long time imo so im hoping others will check it out and chat about the various formats they're running.
it helps that i've always been a randy beuhler fanboy and he's been so heavily involved.

for those who haven't checked it out at all a quick rundown of what they're doing:

1. Vintage Rotisserie Drafts : featuring many notable players along with cube qualifier winners. 8 have been run and the winner of each is going to be in the championship VRD this weekend (the 27th). this will be followed by a "bonus VRD" with fan favorite players and wonky new rules for fun. then they are moving right into VRD season 2
format has been evolving rapidly, and some sweet cards are getting played. i love it way more than i thought i would.

2. Vintage Super League : randy beuhler got to talking with SGL after making a big debut in vrd 6 (iirc?) about an idea he'd had for a vintage league. he got a ridic crew of the top players (menendian, maher, pikula, dave williams, lsv, martell, utter-leyton) playing with a new deck list (if they want) after each 3 weeks. last place after round robin will be eliminated.
this is single handedly making me brew vintage for the local proxy vintage events. so many sweet decks

3. TEAM ROCHESTER : this is what i'm most excited for actually. this is my favorite format and i have so many fond memories of watching old team roch PTs.
apperantly SGL had been founded wanting to do something similar to VSL but with cube because they are cubists at heart. but it just wasnt all that feasable because even the one person over the shoulder they do for PTs and whatnot is hard and SGL has surprisingly high production values (that keep getting better) so they didnt want to look janky. but team roch solves it, and is also an amazing format. They're planning on kicking it off soon with sponsored 3 man teams and regular events, and i am So Fucking Stoked to watch that shit


infect broke vrd

randy b's draw7-finity might still be worth exploring

utter leyton is playing a pyromancer's ascension list after my heart with young pyromancer just shoved in and damn it looks good

lots of magic stuff happening but yall are the only magic people i know anymore so no one to chat with about it
seems like it should be up riptide's alley. exploring new spaces and all

Eric Chan

Hyalopterous Lemure
Staff member
Yep, I'm a Randy Buehler fanboy too. The league has been all over my twitter feed the last two weeks, but I don't have much time to watch Magic these days, sadly.

When is this team Rochester thing going down? Also, what decks have been winning their rotisserie drafts (too lazy to check)?



VRD 1 & 2: no decklists. i know that paul waitts won the first one with reanimator. idk what deck won 2

VRD3: time vault deck wins with painter/servant and scepter/chant as well
he got the time vault round 2 pick 4. it would never go as low again, and i think it's safe to say now people have come around to a consensus that the pick order is definitely lotus, ancestral, and then time vault is perhaps the strongest option left.

VRD4: natural order takes it down with black for liliana and dak depths combo
solidifies the importance of not just being able to win in a single turn, but having multiple angles of attack.

VRD5: cedric phillips continues to live his charmed life of insane lucksackery and wins after getting some of the most ridic late picks you can imagine (demonic 17th round , TNN 21, young pyromancer 30, jace, tms 32)
fuck cedric phillips
blue and black are so deep that 6 of the players can be in one or the other and it wont matter.

VRD6: randy beuhler gets seat one and charles wong takes seat 2. randy looks to be having a normal artifact heavy draft with some draw sevens only to drop the reveal on the round 13/14 turn. cranial plating/archbound ravager. no one had yet tried affinity. it was ultimately an awkward build and he did so so with it but it was fun to watch come together and play out.
but on the 16/17 turn wong reveals the real story of the day after appearing to be on a normal u/g deck. inkmoth nexus/glistener elf.
randy would later say "wong broke it with infect"

VRD7: elliot woo takes this one down with another new deck. aggro u/r splinter twin looked strong all day.
corbette gray forces mono blue again and misses

VRD8: randy returns with a vocal hunger about wanting to win a seat at the championship draft. others are hungry too. everyone came incredibly prepared (except maybe marshall sutcliffe). the players are very competitive and it creates a great atmosphere. i told a friend this was "possibly the most entertaining draft i've ever seen".
cards get sniped frequently, people get salty. randy decides he likes his early start with ancestral more than the lotus start for an affinity build and he can do it better than last time. he moves in and gets tolarian academy mox diamond and tinker, but the 7/8 jesse wilke reveals he is on Randy's plan from VRD6 as well (kinda) and takes chromatic star/chromatic sphere, mimicing a turn by randy in 6 and sending a loud message. randy thinks he's better position and sticks with it. however even after getting plating and ravager (arguably two of the better cards for artifact based aggro) wilke is undetered and answered with etched champion and master of etherium, just willing to let both decks suck and go down with the ship. randy backs down and audibles to infect which as he said "broke the format".
it's an amazing watch and i can barely scratch the surface but it ends in randy battling his way through tiebreaker games to get into the finals and keep the hope alive.

corbette gray forces mono blue again and wins it this time. TNN is a premier threat and pairing it with clones was outstanding for him all day.


no timeline yet on team roch, but they seem to move fast.

other VRD stuff:

hate drafts are surprisingly rare which is part of what made VRD8 so entertaining to see the chippy picks comin out

archetypes continue to evolve quickly. cards like workshop have gone from "second round pick" to "pretty good" to "unplayable" back to "good in green builds" and now possibly in beuhler affinity lists

interesting roleplayer cards like prohibit and seedtime are being brushed off and shuffled up and i fuckin love it.

it's really a format that hasn't had consistent play results like this before and it's fun to watch it evolve from one moth's event to the next

Rob Dennis

The OP nails a lot of where I was out in watching magic coverage, and highly recommend it for anyone with even a passing interest in anything. I started with VRD7 and went back to 5 and also watched all the new ones since then. Have also stayed current with VSL
Started watching VRD8, about halfway through the games. Super stoked, seems like a great format. I like how the presence of power and keeping it all singleton keeps a lot of tension in the draft and let you play all these strong cards while still mainting some level of fairness (ie not suffering from power ending up in the decks of whoever happened to open them).