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By: TheWolf, Shane Garvey
Nov 23 2017 11:00am
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Last week, I decided to run you through an Ixalan Friendly Sealed League, showing you how I break down my sealed pools, build my decks, and bringing you the results of the first three matches. This week, I will add my two extra boosters to my pool, modify my deck/decks, and show you how the remaining six matches went.

THE FIRST BOOSTER

So before round 4, you get to add a booster to your pool if you want to. I want to, and this is what I got:

For my red/green deck, I got another Commune with Dinosaurs, a Crash the Ramparts and a Thrash of Raptors. After reviewing the deck, I decided the only change I want to make at this stage is Thrash of Raptors in for Brazen Buccaneers, leaving me with a deck that looks like this:

Last week, we also looked at what a blue/green deck would look like, but didn't quite have enough playables. And despite opening a Merfolk Branchwalker, a Siren Stormtamer and a Siren's Ruse, it still doesn't quite get there. Also, I now note that I have three copies of Deadeye Plunderers; unfortunately, black is incredibly shallow despite opening Contract Killing in this booster. 

Ultimately, all of this means that I will be continuing to play the red/green deck for now.

ROUNDS 4-6

In round 4 I faced a red/green dinosaurs deck (0-2); this match was brutal, with me not being able to cast anything but Cobbled Wings until turn 5 in game 1, and then not finding anything but Forests in game 2. My opponent also had two Charging Monstrosaurs, which is not fun to play against.

Round 5 I was paired against a blue/green Merfolk deck that included a foil Ripjaw Raptor. I got stuck on three land in game one and got brutalised. To add insult to injury, I also had to put Huatli on the bottom of my library thanks to Commune with Dinosaurs! For game two, I sideboarded out the two Raging Swordtooth and replaced them with Merfolk Branchwalker and Brazen Buccaneers. Whilst this reduces the Dinosaur synergy, it also lowers my curve. My opponent ended up siding into a white/black Vampires deck for this game, which I was able to win. I kept the same deck for game three, even though I anticipated my opponent would go back to Merfolk; I was correct. Annoyingly, my string of bad luck decided to continue, and I got stuck on two Mountains until turn 6. I would never draw more than three lands (all Mountains) for the entire game, and that was that.

Heading into round 6 with a 2-3 record and 3 losses in a row was a bad feeling. I decided to cut one of the Raging Swordtooth and keep Merfolk Branchwalker in. I have to admit, after three matches in a row where I have had land issues, I'm not feeling great. But that is a part of Magic, I guess, and you have to fight through it. I can still get to a 6-3 record, which is generally what I am to at least get, so it's not all doom and gloom yet. My round 6 opponent ended up being a Naya Dinosaurs deck, leaning heavily on the green and white and splashing red (2-0). There wasn't much to say about this match, as it was a pretty easy victory. I didn't have any mana issues and curved out nicely in both games, drawing a good mix of removal and creatures, with Cobbled Wings providing me with a means to victory in both games.

So, 3-3 moving into the last three rounds. If my luck comes good I'm confident enough in my deck that it can win, but we shall see what happens.

THE SECOND BOOSTER

Ranging Raptors and Firecannon Blast are excellent additions to my pool for my deck. I don't really want the rare in this case; there are not that many mana sinks in the format. 

If I want to look at the blue/green deck, Vineshaper Mystic and Siren Lookout are good additions, but I still think the red/green deck is more powerful.

So, to the deck: I dropped Unfriendly Fire for the Firecannon Blast, and dropped Blossom Dryad for Ranging Raptors:

 

 

ROUNDS 7-9

I shouldn't have mentioned anything about my luck. My round 7 opponent was on Naya Dinosaurs and, sure enough, I went 0-2 after mulliganing both games to five cards. Game one wasn't too bad, I was able to hold off the onslaught for a little while, but in game two I never drew land other than the two Forests I had in my opening five cards.

Round 8 started with me not drawing a land after mulliganing to 3. At this point I'm starting to assume the Magic gods are playing some sort of practical joke on me. I conceded and moved to game 2. This time, luck was on my side, with my opponent only playing Islands and an Air Elemental for the entire game). Game 3, and I finally found out my opponent was on blue/green. We both hit our land drops this time, but I was able to curve out and pressure my opponent and eventually got the win (2-1).

So, 4-4 heading into the final match. The deck feels fine, but I just keep having mana issues. Hopefully this last match lets me finish with a winning record. My final opponent was on white/black Vampires (2-1). Game one my opponent was able to get an early lead with two copies of Pirate's Cutlass on some flying Vampires, and I wasn't able to keep up. Game two I curved out and was able to kill a lot of 1 toughness creatures with a Raging Swordtooth, which ultimately won me the game. The final game went much the same way, giving me an overall 5-4 record.

CONCLUSION

Despite the horrible run of luck I had, Ixalan sealed deck is a fun format, potentially even better than Ixalan draft, which has become quite stale very quickly. If you haven't tried Ixalan sealed yet, give it a go.

Until next time!