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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Feb 22 2013 12:26pm
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 Welcome back to Tribal Apocalypse, the PRE where three vampires, two elves and two goblins walk into a Singleton event...

   Table of Contents 

  1. Last Week on Tribal Apocalypse...
  2. The High Price of Winning
  3. RexDart's Show and Tell
  4. Announcement Time!
  5. What's Next

 So, first Singleton event of the year, and the final ranking is Goblin, Vampire, Vampire, Goblin, Vampire, Elf, Elf? So much for "I like Singleton events best because they force you to try out different things." (Your words in the survey!) So disappointing. There's also sort of a Vampire power creep (so far, out of three events — which, I realize, it's not that much — Vampires ended up 1st place and 2nd place, then 1st place again, now 2nd place, 3rd place and 5th place.) The overall quality of their lineup allows access to 20 members that are all normally found in regular decks. We'll see what to do about that after a couple more events (next one is scheduled for April 20.)


  • Event Number: 3.07, Week 111 BE
  • Date: February 16
  • Attendance: 16
  • Rounds: 3
  • Special Rules: Tribal Singleton, no additional banned list
  • Winner: arcbounddaylabor (Goblin)
  • Undefeated: mihahitlor (Vampire)
  • 1 Loss: romellos (Vampire); Coolcat1678 (Goblin); ellmaris (Vampire); Robin88 (Elf); fliebana (Elf)
  • Special Prizes: none
  • Tribes: Angel (x2), Artificer, Beast (x2), Construct, Elf (x2), Goblin (x2), Human, Phoenix, Soldier, Vampire (x3)
  • Event link (with all players, pairings, standings, decks, and results): here it is

 Without further ado, let's just transcribe all these power-hungry, almost strictly monocolored decklists with no comment whatsoever (RexDart will analyze them a little in his weekly feature.) Except for: congrats to arcbounddaylabor for his vampire-slaying debut on Tribal Apocalypse!


 Arcbounddaylabor's Goblins defeated mihahitlor's Vampires in the playoff round:


 The other Vampires, by romellos:


 The other Goblins, by Coolcat1678:


 [Wait a minute... 2 Lightning Bolts?! Coolcat, did you cheat so blatantly? Hope it's just an error in the deck's submission]

 Here's yet another Vampire deck by ellmaris:


 And the Elves by Robin88 (wow, more than one color in the same deck! Is that possible?):


 Elves #2, by fliebana:


 So, was there some interesting deck in the mix? Well, not so many. In fact, there were no special prizes assigned at all. The only unusual tribe was (quelle surprise!) by AJ_Impy, who unfortunately had to leave early, but at least chose to run Singleton Phoenix! (And, well, Changelings, of course.)


 And that's it.


 Also known as: how much do the Top 4 decks cost? As of February 22, 2013, here's the answer (MTGO Traders prices; the cheapest version of each card is always used; basic lands count zero):

  • 1st place, arcbounddaylabor 's Goblins: $4.46 (nonland cards: $4.15; tribal base: $2.29)
  • 2nd place, mihahitlor's Vampires: $28.72 (nonland cards: $13.50; tribal base: $5.15)

 Oh well, at least the winning decklists were truly budget-friendly. I mean, that Goblin deck doesn't even bother to include Goblin Guide or Magma Jet! And miha's Vampire deck is just slightly more expensive due to a couple fetch lands, but still way cheaper than most of the Top 4 decks we see every week.



 This week's Singleton format event saw familiar faces all across the top of the standings. Vampires have proven to be the most powerful Singleton tribe since the special event began last year, and it's no surprise that mihahitlor piloted them to an undefeated finish. What may be a surprise is that he lost in the finals to arcbounddaylabor's Goblin list. Singleton has had a surprising number of successful aggro decks, with deckbuilders having to go very deep and pull marginally-playable creatures into service in order to keep their curve correct and have enough consistency. Our 1st place list this week exemplifies that strategy perfectly, using a wide variety of creatures from the Goblin tribe's plethora of one-drop options, complemented by a spell suite that is a veritable museum of red burn spells through the ages.

 Remember, the Miststalker Deckbuilding Challenge is still available!  The prize of one non-foil digital copy of Angelic Destiny, one of the coolest auras ever printed, can be yours if you:

  • Build a Beast tribal deck for the event.
  • Include at least 3 copies of Uril, the Miststalker
  • Include at least 6 beneficial Auras (i.e. Armadillo Cloak counts toward the total, but Pacifism does not.)
  • Enter Tribal Apocalypse with the deck, and finish X-1 or better.

 This week is a "Small Time" event, so it's worth noting that Beasts are not only legal, but don't generally have any of the forbidden "Big Shot" subtypes that would make them unplayable under the new rules as recently announced by Kuma. So this would be a perfect event to make a run at the Miststalker Prize!  Once this prize is unlocked, I have another challenge ready to go -- one that fans of monoblack Legacy decks should really enjoy... but more on that later.

 Check the complete archive of RexDart's Deck Techs here.


 Just to remind you of a few things:

 The Rules: we have a page with all the rules listed, so we won't have to repeat all of them before any tournament. Yay for time saving!

 The Top 8 Lockout: since last week, every time a Top 8 player (either from this year's ranking or all-time) will end undefeated, they will not be allowed to register the same tribe and deck again for 4 events (i.e. they'll have to register a different deck or decks 4 times before coming back to the undefeated one). With "deck" is meant a specific, recognizable archetype (e.g. Wall-Drazi), which in some case will be linked to a specific combo card (e.g. Helm of Obedience). A list of the current lockouts is maintained here.

 The Watch List: some particular, archetype-defining cards have been put into a specific Watch List, giving them Annoyance Levels based on how frequently they show up and their degree of success. Once a card gets to Level 3 or more, it'll be banned until enough weeks will have passed to make its appearance ratio acceptable again. So far, with 13 cards on watch, none of them reaches an Annoyance Level.

 The Tribal Achievements: welcome to the second season of the Tribal Achievements! Find new ways to have fun within Tribal Apocalypse, challenge yourself to complete all kinds of strange MTG feats, and make some tix in the process.

 The Mongoose Pride Prize!  As the last tribe standing after everyone else had been played at least once, Mongoose has become the protagonist of a dedicated prize that will remember forever that you all neglected them despite Nimble Mongoose being featured in high-profile, tier-1 Legacy decks. The Mongoose Pride Prize will permanently award 1 tix (at SBena_Bot) to everyone who'll just... play Mongoose. That's right, you just have to play them and you'll get 1 tix, till the end of times. Well, there's just one clause: you have to win at least one match with them within the event (byes and forfeits don't count). Let's show them all what the mighty Herpestidae can do, shall we?

Hard to kill, hard to play (apparently)

 Topical Prize rotation!  Return to Ravnica is not the latest trend anymore, so we embraced the Gatecrash flavor. The Tribes eligible for the 1-tix Topical Prize (remember: you need to win at least one match with one of them, and be the highest-ranked to do that at the end of a TribAp event) are the ones represented in the Keyrunes of the Gatecrash's guilds: Thrull (for Orzhov), Horror (for Dimir), Beast (for Gruul), Soldier (for Boros), and Crab (for Simic). Note: in the case of Beast and Soldier, that are way stronger tribes than the other three, your deck needs to include at least 20 cards of each guild color (gold and hybrid cards count as both). .

 The Hamtastic Award: the Biodiversity Prize dedicated to the memory of Erik Friborg has started again, for its 5th edition, and it's back to its original roots: be the first to run 10 different tribes in a row and you'll get 5 tix on SBena_Bot! You have to play all the rounds of an event in order for the tribe to be added to your sequence. If you repeat a previous tribe, your whole sequence resets.

 The Volver Challenge is still unclaimed! I'll give 1 tix out of my pocket to the first player who'll win a proper match (no bye, no opponent forfeiting) with a Volver deck featuring 4 copies of each of them.

And maybe in the process we'll find out what the hell is a Volver

 Videos: Send me replays of your games, please! Don't know how? Read this quick guide in 6 easy steps and start saving your tribal feats for posterity!

 And Slugs for all! To honor the memory of the one and only BlippyTheSlug (the longest-run host of Tribal Apocalypse), any new player can ask me for a one-time free treat: a full playset of any and all Slugs ever printed and available online (that is Spitting Slug, Molder Slug, Thermopod, and Catacomb Slug). Courtesy of MTGO Traders and SBena_Bot. The gift is meant for players who never took part before on a TribAp event, but I can grant it to recent players or budget players too, at my discretion. So just ask me for that, maybe you'll be lucky.


 The upcoming Tribal Apocalypse events of the Blippian Era (every Saturday at 17:00 GMT):

  • 3.08 (Week 112 BE), on February 23: Small Time Tribal (no Big Shot Tribes allowed as creature types in your tribal base. You can only play Elves, Goblins, Humans, Wizards, Cats and Walls as off-tribe cards. For instance, you choose to run a 60-card Knight deck, you need 20 Knights that are none of those subtypes. You can run Human Knights or Elf Knights off-tribe. Only what's written on the card counts: Changeling creatures are considered just Shapeshifters.)
  • 3.09 (Week 113 BE), on March 2: Underdog Week.
  • 3.10 (Week 114 BE), on March 9: Regular Week.
  • 3.11 (Week 115 BE), on March 16: Pure Tribal (no off-tribe creatures, the T9 are banned.)

Check out the full Tribal Calendar for 2013!

Take the Tribal Survey!

 See you all in the Tribal room!


The final game of the final by arcbounddaylabor at Fri, 02/22/2013 - 17:48
arcbounddaylabor's picture

The final game of the final match came down to having enough burn in hand to draw my 8th card and go to face for 7 with scent of cinder. I followed it up with Mogg War-Marshall goblin grenade and still had enough burn in hand to close the game. The vamps deck is good, but far slower than the goblins. It also has no real way of stopping the burn plan outside of resolving nighthawk and a lord or getting crazy with one of it's death leeches. The goblins deck has plenty of removal on a low curve to clear a path.
If you'll notice all of my 3 drop creatures either have haste or a relevant ability that I could use if they were to be killed. Lords are only good if you have a board established when they drop otherwise their ability is worthless. I just played the deck as a burn deck using my creatures as slightly better burn spells, and not really caring if they died in combat. The deck plays like a best of from different mono red lists I've played over the years with a few cute tricks based on tribal synergy like sacing my board to pump Spikeshot Elder and fire at the face multiple times instead of going through combat. If I was to make changes it would have been fireblast in for reckless abandon and drop Goblin patrol for Goblin Guide, I even have those cards but just threw together cards that were lower in value because I only spent 5 minutes making the deck.

Hey man, thanks for the by RexDart at Fri, 02/22/2013 - 19:26
RexDart's picture

Hey man, thanks for the insight on that finals match! I could tell you had a burn-heavy game plan, but hadn't even considered the idea that you'd have hands where you would just be using Scent of Cinder to dome them for 7 on the draw. I was envisioning a more typical RDW play style, dropping creatures and using burn to clear the way -- which is pretty bad against mihahitlor's decks. You obviously played it much more as a pure burn deck than I envisioned. This is why I wish I had a match replay, of course.

Also, the fact that mihahitlor had a lot of answers to creatures and very few to burn spells (only Nighthawk, which you could easily kill) is one of the reasons I usually advocate running a good amount of burn spells in any aggro deck. His decks are constructed to be absolutely brutal on opposing creatures, and the burn plan was obviously essential against him. It also sounds like you are an experienced mono-red player, which likely helped quite a bit. People think aggro decks are easy to play, but from my time piloting legacy Zoo, I know the decisions you make to maximize the damage out of your hand and mana every turn aren't always easy -- when you first pick those decks up, there are all those times your opponent wins with 1 or 2 life and you realize later how you could have won the game. Good work!

Singleton by coolcat1678 at Sat, 02/23/2013 - 12:24
coolcat1678's picture

Missed a duplicate by accident I apologize for the error. I wasn't actually going to play the event till I talked with Arcbound and realized his idea of a goblin/burn deck was really solid. Threw mine together in ~30m