Thursday, January 27, 2011

Draft Report - Jan 15, 2011

- WB Control (5-0, 10-2)
- BR Aggro (5-1, 9-3)
- UG Aggro-Midrange (2-3, 6-8)
- WG Midrange (2-2, 5-5)
- BG Midrange (1-3, 4-7)
- UB Aggro-Control (0-3, 1-6)
- UG (0-3, 0-5)

A varied environment, but with one lone control deck that made it to the top.

WB Control

8 Plains
8 Swamp
Orzhov Basilica

Reassembling Skeleton
Solemn Simulacrum
Ghost Council of Orzhova
Ob Nixilis, the Fallen
Steel Hellkite
Jareth, Leonin Titan
Eternal Dragon

Wayfarer's Bauble
Swords to Plowshares
Skull Fracture
Inquisition of Kozilek
Contagion Clasp
Hymn to Tourach
Crystal Ball
Pulse of the Fields
Icy Manipulator
Wrath of God
Elspeth, Knight-Errant
Night of Souls' Betrayal
Kirtar's Wrath
Profane Command

After several tries, I finally got a good WB control deck! This one is quite versatile, packing answers to pretty much anything, while maintaining a great level of synergy: Reassembling Skeleton, Solemn Simulacrum, Ghost Council of Orzhova and Eternal Dragon go well with Wrath of God and Kirtar's Wrath. Elspeth, Knight-Errant pretty much dominates any game alone, although some two card combos also unbalance the game significantly. Reassembling Skeleton + Ghost Council of Orzhova locked up more than one game, and Profane Command + Solemn Simulacrum is an avalanche of card advantage.

Pulse of the Fields was absolutely awesome for a deck that needs to buy time and hit land drops to work, Contagion was a good emergency switch, and Jareth, Leonin Titan was a great finisher, despite being slow. The discard suite disrupted the opponent's midgame plans often, mainly the broken Hymn to Tourach, as always. All in all, a balanced, powerful deck.

BR Aggro

6 Mountain
8 Swamp
Lavaclaw Reaches
Ghitu Encampment
City of Brass
Dark Depths

Vampire Lacerator
Rakdos Guildmage
Hearth Kami
Dauthi Horror
Vampire Hexmage
Blood Knight
Manic Vandal
Fire Imp
Undead Gladiator
Hypnotic Specter
Avalanche Riders
Hoarding Dragon

Genju of the Spires
Burst Lightning
Flame Slash
Night's Whisper
Searing Blaze
Hammer of Bogardan
Phyrexian Arena
Soul Foundry
Wrecking Ball

Placing second, a deck that's quite the opposite of the previous one. A very aggressive one, with fast creatures, efficient burn and lots of resilience against removal in Genju of the Spires, Lavaclaw Reaches and Ghitu Encampment. It's also the first deck to put together Dark Depths and Vampire Hexmage, a combo that hit the game only once, but promptly won it, from a very bad position, when it did. Also note the late game options in Soul Foundry, Night's Whisper, Phyrexian Arena and Hammer of Bogardan.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Draft Report - Jan 11, 2011

In the first draft of the year, we had 5 people. It was balanced overall, except decks tended to be more controllish. One good thing: finally BG made it to the top! The build was very similar to the one I used on Dec 18, and it seems to be BG's best archetype.

- BG Aggro (3-1, 7-3)
- WR Control (3-1, 7-3)
- UR Control (2-2, 4-5)
- UG Midrange (1-3, 4-7)
- WU Control (1-3, 3-7)

BG Aggro

12 Swamp
5 Forest

Jungle Lion
Oona's Prowler
Dauthi Horror
Fallen Askari
Nezumi Graverobber
Nezumi Cutthroat
Silhana Ledgewalker
Hand of Cruelty
Dusk Urchins
Nirkana Cutthroat
Stillmoon Cavalier
Precursor Golem
Throat Slitter
Vulturous Zombie
Kulrath Knight

Scythe of the Wretched
Chainer's Edict
Rend Flesh
Krosan Grip
Sudden Death
Diabolic Servitude

A classic beatdown deck with a very aggressive creature curve and efficient support spells. Krosan Grip may look like a waste, but sometimes these decks lose to one single artifact or enchantment, and this certainly prevented that from happening. Diabolic Servitude, Dusk Urchins and Harmonize were great tools to maintain pressure for a little bit longer. Attrition makes the game so much harder for the opponent, especially when you have a bunch of cheap critters to sacrifice.

WR Control

8 Plains
7 Mountain
Ghitu Encampment
Boros Garrison

Soul Warden
Hearth Kami
Kami of Ancient Law
Tuktuk the Explorer
Cunning Sparkmage
Magus of the Disk
Soltari Guerrillas
Rakka Mar
Siege-Gang Commander
Hoarding Dragon
Crater Hellion
Eternal Dragon
Akroma, Angel of Wrath

Swords to Plowshares
Lightning Bolt
Luminarch Ascension
Oblivion Stone
Puncture Blast
Solemn Offering
Prison Term
Pulse of the Forge
Faith's Fetters
Goblin Charbelcher

The deck felt a bit awkward, but it worked well generally. Most cards are dedicated to keep the opponent's permanents from doing anything, but the deck has a quite high finisher count too. This was important against the control decks that had a lot of answers. Eventually, one of my threats would stick.

Good surprises: Tuktuk the Explorer held the offense at bay on numerous occasion - it was the scariest chump blocker possible, so much that people would frequently hold their attackers back until they could deal with the Goblin Golem 5/5 token. Rakka Mar was great defense and offense, grinding the opponent down unless they could remove it.

Underperformers: Eternal Dragon was only cast as last resort. 7 mana for a 5/5 vanilla flier is underwhelming, and it's uncommon to be able to spare 12 mana to reanimate it. Hoarding Dragon wasn't bad, but he was never more than a 4/4 flier.