Hello and welcome to another edition of Sealed Success!This past weekend I attended the Killer Instinct World Cup and I had a great time.My store in conjunction with Ultra Arcade ran events at the KI World Cup (with Ultra Arcade presenting the World Cup itself).There's nothing like sitting in an auditorium and watching intense, exciting, and thrilling Killer Instinct play with great energy and amazing presentation.Watching eSports live is something you need to experience because it's not as mundane as watching people play video games would make it sound.
There was also Magic to be had as there were three events going on at the same time: Standard 1K PTQQ, $500 Duel Commander, and a 1K Modern GPT. I personally was able to play in the Modern event and outdid my own expectations by getting into the top 8 with UR Storm. Gifts Ungiven is a broken card y'all. Modern Masters 2017 comes out this week and I can't wait to draft it. But before that, let's take a look at the upcoming schedule:
Aether Revolt Draft #7, Aether Revolt Sealed League #3 video, Aether Revolt Sealed League #4 video
Aether Revolt Draft #8, Aether Revolt Sealed League #3 videos, Aether Revolt Sealed League #4 videos
Aether Revolt Draft #9, Aether Revolt Sealed League #4 videos, Aether Revolt Sealed League #5 video
Aether Revolt Draft #10, Aether Revolt Sealed League #4 videos, Aether Revolt Sealed League #5 videos
For the last few weeks I had entertained the thought of doing a Modern Masters 2017 review and as this week came up I decided against doing so. The format isn't like a usual set with draft archetypes for the ten 2 color combinations. The abundance of gold cards combined with all ten Guildgates at commons and Signets at uncommons means the set is pushed in a direction where you're going to want to play as many colors as you're able to. I expect gold cards to be high picks since they're all generally powerful and can be splashed on the cheap with the copious mana fixing in the set. There are some 2 color combinations out there like U/W blink and R/B Unearth. While you can draft 2 color decks, I imagine 3 color decks will the norm. I don't have much insight into the format, so I didn't want to do a complete review and give out the wrong information. Explore the set on your own and see what you can do. Most of all, have fun!
Aether Revolt Draft #7
You know, I really try not to do R/x every single time but if it's open enough I'm going to try it out and see if it works. This is probably the most all in of the R/x versions I've played with Consulate Dreadnought and Siege Modification. Once I saw the Consulate Dreadnought there was no way I wasn't going to play red and force it to happen. Sometimes you just win the game on turn 3 if you have both in play and your opponent has no answer for the abyss every single turn. They can't attack past it nor block it efficiently, so they have to kill it or have it kill them.
Red was fairly open in pack one and a lot of late white gave me the idea what white would be open in pack two. Getting a 4th pick Sram's Expertise solidified the push into white and I didn't look back. I do think I made the right choice in taking Hungry Flames over Shock in pack 1 pick 1. While Shock is good and cheap, Hungry Flames can kill more things while dealing damage to the opponent, and that damage is never irrelevant. Not taking Inventor's Apprentice in red aggro seems wrong, but I don't have many ways to reliably make it a 2/3 for 1, so I'd rather have a different card than just a 1/2 for 1.
In the end we went 1-2 and we just caught the wrong side of variance in these matches. Both matches I lost I took to three games, so we could easily be 2-1 or 3-0 if one thing went our way. 16 land R/x is a gamble on the format and how the table drafts, and it's something that is more at risk of not panning out in league play. Not only is it important to know what kind of removal you might be facing, having good assurances that you won't face too many Shocks or opposing Aether Chasers helps your win percentage. Perhaps the format has now adjusted to R/x? We will see. What do you think? Did the deck deserve a 1-2 match record?
Aether Revolt Sealed League #3
Only the one match today and we got a win versus a green/black deck that seemed to be good but had mana issues both games. The games actually went a little long given mana issues of my own in game 1 and not enough closing power in game 2. The games where your opponent stumbles on mana are the ones you should easily win and yet we had to work for each win. A good deck should have free win potential where you happen to curve out and if your opponent stumbles you can punish them quite handily. My deck doesn't have that capability so I had to play a little longer in order to secure my win.
Once again the match showed the importance of Oviya Pashiri. My opponent killed her with Battle At the Bridge in both games and if they hadn't they would have lost on the spot. She's a card that snowballs out of control if you can't deal with her. In a sense she's a fixed version of Pack Rat, which is quite the card to be compared to. If she was my only win condition I would have tried to hold her in my hand for a lot longer, but since I have other avenues of winning I can play her out and not be blown out if she dies before I get to untap with her. Next week we end the league, so let's see if we can improve on our 2-1!
Aether Revolt Sealed League #4
When I opened up the league pool after not seeing it for a while, I thought to myself "Man, this GBr deck is complete garbage." Thankfully I looked at the RB deck and decided I wasn't that screwed. The pool here isn't as strong as our last pool but it's not unplayable either. Four good removal spells in Chandra's Revolution and Daring Demolition make for a good base to start a BR deck with, and Herald of Anguish provides the top end needed to close out a game once things have been dealt with. That said the rest of the creatures are weak and I have to play more noncreature spells than I'd like, so I can't be too aggressive enough though I have a low curve.
Looking at the RG and GBr decks I had built however, I just don't think they're good enough to win games. The green just don't do anything at all. Sure I have a Natural Obsolescence to get rid of artifacts, but outside of that I just have mopey creatures. In the decks I have green in I have to rely on the other color to make it work, and I even have to splash red in GB just to boost the power level. RG is likely the worst out of the three I've built since I think Herald of Anguish in GBr is a better win condition than something like Outland Boar.
White and blue are pretty unplayable, which makes me sad since I have a Solemn Recruit in white that would be very good if I was able to play it. Green is also unplayable after a second look but for some reason I built two decks with it to try and make it work. Overall I don't think the pool is very good, but we have a chance to win with the RB deck if things go my way. If not, well I'll still be able to add packs to try and make it better. What would you build with this pool?
I can't wait to draft Modern Masters and see how the draft environment shakes out. We have endless drafts (as long as we have product) at the store and I imagine we'll fire a lot of drafts on Friday. Hopefully it releases on Magic Online soon so I can show you all how the format works out. Next week I'll be back with more Aether Revolt Limited and I'll talk about my Modern Masters drafts!
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