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By: TheWolf, Shane Garvey
Sep 05 2017 12:00pm
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Hour of Devastation is almost at an end and this will be the last draft article I write for the format (we have some Modern Cube next week, then move on to Ixalan!) The format has been enjoyable, though it's not one of my all time favourites. Still, I have continued to draft it and have had fun.

Let's jump into the draft picks!

 

THE DRAFT

  Pack 1 pick 1:

  My Pick:

This pack has some good cards in it. I like Vizier of the True and River Hoopoe, and would happily first pick them if there was nothing better. However, we also have Ambuscade, which is probably the best card here. However, there is also a Mirage Mirror. I have not had a chance to play with it yet and am not sure how good it is. The safe pick here is Ambuscade, but I want to explore things a bit more, so I took Mirage Mirror.


  Pack 1 pick 2:

  My Pick:

The best cards here are Unsummon, Khenra Scrapper and another Vizier of the True. All of them are probably equal in power level; I went with what I knew, taking Khenra Scrapper. This card has performed quite well for me in the format.


  Pack 1 pick 3:

  My Pick:

In this pack, I think the two best choices are Aerial Guide and Lethal Sting. I think Aerial Guide is probably slightly stronger, so took it.


  Pack 1 pick 4:

  My Pick:

Pick four, and we have another Aerial Guide, as well as a Desert of the Indomitable. There is also a Chandra's Defeat, which is an excellent sideboard card. I ended up staying with blue and took a second Aerial Guide.


  Pack 1 pick 5:

  My Pick:

I went back and forth between a third Aerial Guide or Fervent Paincaster. I ended up deciding to stay in blue. I certainly won't want any more Aerial Guides, though.


  Pack 1 pick 6:

  My Pick:

I noted here that there were some pretty average cards now; Vizier of the Anointed being the best, though I would need to pick up some cards to synergise with it. I also note that there are a lot of white cards left, albeit mediocre ones.


  Pack 1 pick 7:

  My Pick:

Staying with blue, I took Consign/Oblivion, which is fine as a tempo play. It also keeps me in blue. I also considered Manalith but decided not to take on at this stage.


  Pack 1 pick 8:

  My Pick:

Having taken a bunch of blue cards, I'm happy to get an on colour Desert now. At this stage, apart from obviously being in blue, I'm completely open, and feel like I am in a good position.


  Pack 1 pick 9:

  My Pick:

I'm also pretty happy to get a Striped Riverwinder here. The next few picks will likely be mediocre, which means at the start of pack two I can move into whatever colour I open the best card of.


  Pack 1 pick 10:

  My Pick:

Upon seeing Vile Manifestation, my mind immediately thinks that blue/black cycling is what I should be in. I took it and will look to see if that is a possibility.


  Pack 1 pick 11:

  My Pick:

Cunning Survivor fits with my previous pick, so I was happy to take that. Let's quickly run through the last few picks of this pack:


  Pack 1 pick 12:

  My Pick:


  Pack 1 pick 13:

  My Pick:


  Pack 1 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 1 pick 15:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 1:

  My Pick:

There are two good blue cards here, in Unsummon and Unquenchable Thirst, but there is also a Sand Strangler which is easily the best card in the pack. Thinking back over pack one, I realised I had not been passed much red; one or more people to my right were taking it. What it means is that it's unlikely anyone to my left was taking red either, so I could possibly cut the red players to my right in this pack. I took Sand Strangler and decided to see what happened.


  Pack 2 pick 2:

  My Pick:

Having already taken one Khenra Scrapper, I was happy to take another. It - along with Aerial Guide - are the two strongest picks, so I decided to cut red and take the Scrapper.


  Pack 2 pick 3:

  My Pick:

My theory seems to be paying off, now getting passed a Puncturing Blow. I was more than happy to take it here.


  Pack 2 pick 4:

  My Pick:

This pack has a couple of nice white cards, with Dauntless Aven and Vizier of the True. There is also another Khenra Scrapper. However, there is also a Desert of the Fervent, which is an easy pick to go along with Sand Strangler from earlier.


  Pack 2 pick 5:

  My Pick:

This pick was between Unsummon, Inferno Jet and Wall of Forgotten Pharoahs. I like the Wall but ruled it out for now, as I only had two Deserts; I ended up taking Unsummon as it was the cheaper of the two cards left.


  Pack 2 pick 6:

  My Pick:

Magmaroth has performed well for me, despite me hearing that other people don't like it, and I would have picked it here if it wasn't for the fact that there was another Desert of the Fervent. This was the pick to go with Sand Strangler.


  Pack 2 pick 7:

  My Pick:

As I mentioned earlier, Chandra's Defeat is a strong sideboard card. I liked it over everything else here.


  Pack 2 pick 8:

  My Pick:

I'm happy to take Wall of Forgotten Pharoahs now that I have three Deserts. It's a good blocker and can often do those extra few points of damage that let you win the game.


  Pack 2 pick 9:

  My Pick:

Nothing here for me other than Thorned Moloch, so Thorned Moloch it is!


  Pack 2 pick 10:

  My Pick:

These are both average picks, so as usual I just took the cheapest.


  Pack 2 pick 11:

  My Pick:

I have three Deserts so far, which, by the time I cast Gilded Cerodon, I'll hopefully have one in play. The remaining picks were:


  Pack 2 pick 12:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 13:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 15:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 1:

  My Pick:

This is a pretty decent Amonkhet pack, with Gust Walker, Kefnet the Mindful, Final Reward and Hooded Brawler. Of course, only one of them is in my colours, so I went with Kefnet.


  Pack 3 pick 2:

  My Pick:

What a horrible pack for me! I could have taken Cradle of the Accursed, but decided to take Oketra the True because I could.


  Pack 3 pick 3:

  My Pick:

I'm not a big fan of this pack either. I took Naga Oracle over Cartouche of Zeal.


  Pack 3 pick 4:

  My Pick:

I didn't have a lot of low mana-cost creatures at this point in my deck, and this was the deciding factor in taking Tah-Crop Skirmisher over Aven Initiate in this pack.


  Pack 3 pick 5:

  My Pick:

I like Censor. It's good when your opponent is not expecting it, then in the late game it cycles cheaply when it is no longer useful. 


  Pack 3 pick 6:

  My Pick:

On the other hand, I don't like Cancel as much. The difference between two and three mana is pretty big. I took another Tah-Crop Skirmisher over it.


  Pack 3 pick 7:

  My Pick:

I almost took Bloodrage Brawler, but it's not very good when you have Kefnet in the deck. Maybe I should have taken it anyway, but I took Scribe of the Mindful.


  Pack 3 pick 8:

  My Pick:

Floodwaters is another card I like; when it's good it's quite good, and when it's bad you just cycle it away.


  Pack 3 pick 9:

  My Pick:

Brute Strength is all that is left for me here and, in fact, for the rest of the draft:


  Pack 3 pick 10:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 11:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 12:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 13:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 15:

  My Pick:


THE DECK

This is not quite your typical blue/red deck in this format... I have no idea how this will go. I don't really like where it ended up; it seems more like a blue/red aggro deck than what this colour pair should be (spells-matter), but I guess I have to make do.

THE MATCHES

In round one, I played against a blue/green deck splashing black for some aftermath cards and Final Reward. I won 2-1, in what were three very tight matches, with the clocks on both sides running down to the last few minutes. Round two was against a black/green aggro deck which I lost to 0-2, and it wasn't even close. Round three was a "mirror" - my opponent was also blue/red, but had the better deck. The games were actually close, but I lost 0-2.

So, a 1-2 record, 2-5 in games. My deck was okay; apart from round two I didn't feel like it was completely hopeless. Mirage Mirror was only average and it did not really impress me that much. I also did not get to even draw Kefnet across the seven games, despite some of them going long as well. The card advantage it can generate late in the game certainly could have made a difference. I also tended to not draw the Deserts very often but always seemed to have Sand Strangler, which was a bit unfortunate. Still, the decks I lost too were much better than mine, and I'm not blaming luck on my losses.

That's it for Hour of Devastation from me. Next week, I'll be drafting Modern Cube and after that, previewing Ixalan.

WHAT'S THE PICK?

Let me know in the comments what you would take from this pack!

2 Comments

My ranking would be: by Rerepete at Wed, 09/06/2017 - 17:13
Rerepete's picture

My ranking would be: Ambuscade, Open Fire, Lethal Sting, Rhonas's Last Stand. I would likely take Open Fire as P1p1 as either of the green would have green cut from the next pack, and there is no other good red.

Open Fire because that is in by stsung at Sat, 09/09/2017 - 18:32
stsung's picture

Open Fire because that is in a color that I'd want to play anyway and green was likely to get picked from the packs since there are two very good cards (one being a first pick) in that pack. If either of the green cards wouldn't be in the pack I'd pick the other green card. (for example if there wouldn't the Rhonas's Last Stand I'd pick Ambuscade since the card is better). The other way round I wouldn't really want that 5/4 for two mana but I'd pick it and then would see how it would go (would make a mental note that I passed Open Fire) and tried to stay off red.

(after today's Nationals I have to reevaluate Lethal Sting^_^, that card was good, but still Open Fire and Ambuscade are better)