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By: goat314, William Kirkwood
Dec 21 2011 1:29am
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Well, it’s been quite a break from playing and writing.  As it turns out, the Daily Events just haven’t fired quite as much over the last month and when they have fired, I’ve been at work.  All of that aside, my last week and half, has been full of Magic-y goodness.  I spent last weekend in Charlotte attending a Judge Conference which was a good time.  The Judge community is an entertaining group of people if you like bad jokes and crazy rules questions (Phasing and Banding were both brought up). 

Next WotC dropped a surprise on the Classic community, the Winter Classic Celebration.  If you haven’t read about it by now, just go here.  We are getting some old set drafts and more Daily / Premiere Events which can get you to the Classic Format Celebration Championship.  While my dream of winning a foil playset of Mountain Goats is dashed, a set of Force of Wills or Lion’s Eye Diamonds is a worthy prize to the champion.  Huge thanks to Wizards of the Coast for putting such a large prize on the line to promote our format.  By the time this article goes up, the qualifying Daily Events should be starting soon.

I actually got to play Magic, too.  CRAZY!  I participated in two Daily Events, in which I played fairly sloppily and had very different results.  First was Saturday (Dec 17) afternoon’s event, where I played a significantly altered list of my Welder Shops.  Among the key changes were the removal of Chalice of the Void (on Whiffy Penguin’s advice) and moving Phyrexian Revokers to the sideboard in favor of more heavy hitters. 

I get matched up against the_crisp_one in round one and he is playing Dredge.  Normally Dredge has been a good matchup for my deck, so I am feeling pretty good when I see the first Bazaar of Baghdad hit the battlefield.  Unfortunately, I am beaten game one before I am able to stabilize and move on to sideboarded games where I feel my deck excels. 

Entering a recurring theme for the weekend: Sloppiness.  (You can hear it in the video at the start of game two.)

MTGO asks: “Do you want to mulligan?”

I ask myself: “Do I want to keep this hand?”

The result is catastrophe, I keep a hand not good enough for any game.  I lose.  0-1

Round two, I am paired against Naoto who is playing a Cobra Gush deck with Intuition and Accumulated Knowledge.  Game one I resolve a turn one Metalworker and have a turn two Staff of Domination countered, but followed i with a Triskelion and Goblin Welder.  I make another bad misplay by not killing his Lotus Cobra immediately (which gives him hope of getting his storm combo going).  Fortunately, he does not combo, and concedes to the infinite Triskelion plinking I am showing on the table (just need to draw an artifact).  In game two, Naoto accidentally passes turn on the play without a land drop.  I lead with a Metalworker that’s countered and the next turn with a Triskelion and a Metamorph.  Unfortunately, Naoto is on one land and the game ends very quickly.  1-1

My round three opponent is Lameka55 playing Bears (with Knights of the Reliquary).  This is a very grindy game, as the matchup usually is.  I am able to win game one after metamorphing my opponent’s Birds of Paradise which allowed me to cast my own Wurmcoil Engine… and copy it… twice.  Shortly after commenting how disappointing three Metamorphs in hand were, they give me a blowout win.  Unfortunately games two and three are fought through Relic-Warders, Pridemages, and Knights and I am taken down.  1-2

Unfortunately there is no round four video, everybody else dropped at X-2 and I was given a bye.  It’s a disappointing result for this deck and by far the worst to date.  Changes are definitely needed if it’s going to be able to compete with what I think will be a lot of Legacy / Modern decks playing in the Classic Celebration events (Legacy = Delver, Modern = Zoo).

After all that, we also launched the DE on Monday night (Dec 19).  I decided to play something a little different (meaning exactly opposite) and played a slight variation of Landstill that’s been making its rounds.  I have been a Blue Control, Draw-Go player throughout my Magic days, so I felt comfortable piloting this deck. I did make more than my fair share of play errors, but it was my first tournament run, don't be too harsh.


Round one I play against ENRONHITMAN.  He was playing what I presume to be a budget Esper control deck.  It was good to see somebody new in the event, but sadly his list was just not ready to deal with Landstill and I beat him fairly quickly (for a deck that doesn’t run creatures anyway).  Somewhere in here I cast a spell with a Standstill trigger on the stack, DUMB. 1-0

Round two is certainly the most interesting matchup to me.  I am paired against Calavera and he is playing Shops.  He has Goblin Welders, Batterskulls, and even Snow-Covered Mountains.  Sound familiar?  I open the game with an epic misplay, casting a Force of Will before drawing from a turn one Library.  I get throttled and move onto the sideboard.  In game two I keep a weak hand, but he has kept a very control-heavy opener.  I resolve a Jace before he casts a creature spell, though he has Chalices at one and two in play.  I am able to keep a Batterskulled Germ at bay with Jace, while his Ancient Tomb and Mana Crypt kill him, literally.  Game three I am able to resolve two Energy Flux and win in a blowout.  2-0

Rounds three and four, I will combine for efficiency’s sake.  Round three I played TheWildDog.  I didn’t really have to look at replays to know I was up against the Zombie Apocalypse.  I soon became frustrated with the lack of Leylines of the Void in the sideboard and had my brains eaten.  2-1.  Next I played Rising Storm and he was playing… Dredge (again, argh).  This match was the complete opposite.  He hit a 3% draw game one.  For those of you who may not be familiar with Vintage/Classic Dredge, there is approximately a 3% chance that with four Serum Powders and mulligans that you do not get a Bazaar of Baghdad in your opening hand.  Lucky for me, I got the one game in thirty-three to open the round, along with two Wastelands.  He actually draws Bazaar on turn two, but I immediately destroy it and race him before he can fill his hand up to discard.  Game two, I have Wasteland and two Tormod’s Crypts in my opener.  By the end of the game, I have activated four graveyard artifacts (One more in play) and used the ultimate ability on Jace.  3-1

I really enjoyed playing Landstill.  I said it before, but the deck fits my play style very well.  I definitely intend to get some Leylines in the sideboard and some more Firespouts to deal with aggro-heavy decks.  I'll be playing more of this in the future.  My weekend’s play was pretty sloppy (not six lands on turn three after two Explores sloppy), but I did come home with a good result.  I think most play errors can be attributed to either the layoff from Daily Events, playing a new deck, or being just plain dumb.  The last one is tough to fix, but I definitely plan to work on the first two.  I’m hoping to record quite a few events over the next couple weeks as we celebrate Classic!

So that’s been my last couple weeks… almost.  This past Saturday I was welcomed by the crew of Yawgmoth’s Soap Opera to join them on a podcast.  It was a bunch of fun to talk Classic for an hour.  Be sure to listen this Friday!  Huge thanks to Andy, George, and Zach for having me on and for doing so much for the community.  Thanks to my own clanmates for making the Lotus Farmers an awesome group of people that occasionally play Magic.  Finally, a big thanks to the rest of the Classic community whether you’ve read this or not (though, I guess you won’t know I thanked you if you didn’t read, so you definitely should have).  With all the goings-on in the paper world lately, I thought it appropriate to thank everyonr that I have such a great group of people to share the game with. 

Stay classy everybody!



MTGO asks: “Do you want to by GainsBanding at Wed, 12/21/2011 - 03:11
GainsBanding's picture

MTGO asks: “Do you want to mulligan?”

I ask myself: “Do I want to keep this hand?”

I have done that before. I don't know why... the question is always the same, yet sometimes your brain turns it around.

You're much calmer about it by GainsBanding at Wed, 12/21/2011 - 03:22
GainsBanding's picture

You're much calmer about it than I am.

I thought it was just me by goat314 at Wed, 12/21/2011 - 12:40
goat314's picture

I think there's probably some deep philosophical / Human Factors stuff at work here, might do some "light reading" at work today. :-)