Hello and welcome to another edition of Sealed Success!The year is winding down and with that means Magic is at a standstill.Nothing new is happening this month and we have to wait for next year for it all to start back up again.I think most people are being retrospective now that the year is almost over, but not me.While I do remember the resolutions I set out for this column at the beginning of this year, I don't necessarily want to look back on them.
The future is now and there's only one direction to be going in: forward.Whatever I did or didn't do this past year doesn't matter, all that matters is what I do moving forward.Each day should be better than the day that preceded it.For the moment that means playing better and producing more content, be it here at the site or on my own YouTube channel.
Of course, the year is winding down and the time for innovation is not now, but in the future.Until then we'll keep trucking along with what is now a "stale" format in Kaladesh.Overall I've enjoyed the format but after a few months it needs to change and grow.It's grown stagnant and it needs newness about it.Next week will be the last Kaladesh videos for this year and hopefully in 2017 we'll have something exciting to pore over.Until then enjoy Kaladesh!
Kaladesh Draft League
Well, it could have gone a lot worse for me, so there's that to consider. I tried to be open in the first pack and it didn't pan out like I thought it would. Last draft when I went 3-0 I was open to start and then settled into colors I thought were open, so I decided to try that again this time so see how it would work out. I start the draft off by thinking I'm a black/red deck and then somehow end up in U/W midway in pack 2. I did see some white and blue signals in pack 1, but there wasn't enough there to make me take those cards over the black and red ones I ended up taking in pack 1. In fact, it was only apparent that blue and white were open when I started seeing those cards on the wheel in pack 1, so it's not something I should have recognized from the start. Smuggler's Copter in pack 3 helped give the deck some power it sorely needed given how it came about, but in the end I still had to play some clunkers to make the deck happen.
The issue isn't that I didn't find the open colors, it's that by the time I did I wasn't able to find enough powerful cards to make it happen. I essentially missed out on a pack of picks and while those picks wouldn't have helped my deck, their absence is sorely noted. I don't have sideboard cards and my maindeck is shaky as it is. That said I do have two good rares in Aetherstorm Roc and Smuggler's Copter, so I can win games if I draw those cards early and can protect them.
A 2-1 finish is more than what I could ask for given the way that draft went and keeps my win percentage in these drafts above 50%. It's likely close to 60% but I don't want to get too full of myself here. I still need work to do in terms of being a good drafter and in drafting Kaladesh. We'll see how Aether Revolt changes things next year.
Kaladesh Sealed League
When I started recording my first match with this pool I realized why I didn't want to play it and kept putting it off: it's a bad pool. Not every pool you open can be a winner and this one certainly isn't. My rares are okay but I don't have the support needed to make them be powerful. My blue is bad with Padeem so I'm not able to play the color at all to try and get card advantage. Blooming Marsh is just a land and Metalwork Colossus I think is pretty unplayable outside of certain situations. Aetherstorm Roc, Fumigate, and Cultivator's Caravan are my playable rares, that while good, still need support to make them shine. It's like I have a bunch of Curio Vendors and one good card. That card may be good, but the Curio Vendors are still Curio Vendors.
It doesn't help me that my pool has multiples of commons instead of a spread of commons. Something like 2x Glint-Sleeve Artisan, Impeccable Timing, and Propeller Pioneer is much better than 4x Glint-Sleeve Artisan. My red would be better if I only had 1 Demolish and a mix of red commons instead of all 4 Demolish. You want to be able to diversity your threats so you have the most options for when you dissect your pool and see what cards you need to be playing. The less options you have the more you're forced into one particular color combination or archetype. Sometimes it's a good thing is all the powerful cards are concentrated in two colors, but if every color is weak and you have fewer options you're going to be in for a bad time.
Green/white seemed to be the best option out of the bunch and the hope is to get a match win and hope the rest of the matches aren't too bad for me. The deck just doesn't have enough power to compete with other decks. The later the game goes the more likely I'm going to lose since my cards are relatively underpowered. If I get a fast start and can keep pressure going then that's the best chance I have at winning a game. If you can't go long then you need to win the game as soon as possible. Given enough time individually powerful cards will beat a random assortment of weak spells. However, if you're able to use your weak spells fast and often, then there might not be enough time for those powerful cards to actually be cast.
Right now YouTube is giving me some issues so I'm not sure if you'll be able to see all the videos I have at the time, but I'm going to assume the first two matches are up on the playlist. Currently I'm 1-1 in the league and I'm fortunate to even have that first match win. I don't do well from behind and the Cultivator's Caravan is a tough sell once I'm trying to draw creatures post Fumigate. Even so, Crew 3 actually is a lot for my deck to handle and in practice seems like a poor choice to block with. In any case I still have a shot at ending 3-2 if things go my way for some reason. I don't expect to do well, but stranger things have happened.
You win some and you lose some, that's just the way it goes. Hopefully we'll do more winning than losing next week when I take on my final Kaladesh draft for the year and finish up the sealed league as well. If you have any comments, questions, or concerns leave them in the comments section below.
Small plug: You can subscribe to my YouTube channel here. I have all my content there early and Commander content as well.