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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Apr 03 2012 9:05am
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*** Tribal Apocalypse: Week 64 BE ***
The enemy of my enemy is my teammate

 Welcome back to (click here ==>) Tribal Apocalypse, now with 50% less ranting and rambling. Or not, because this week we had...

 

"I'm ready, master." "I'm not ready!"

 So, the Springtime Two-Headed Giant Special finally happened, and as the proponent of the whole thing, I have to say it wasn't an entirely successful experiment to me. This is more of a consideration about the Two-Headed Giant format per se actually, something that had already hit me while playing in other PREs using the same multiplayer mode within different metas (usually Standard). The issue isn't as much the fact that there's no specific ban list for the format (we provided one that took care of the most blatant anomalies, after all), as it's the peculiar way in which 2HG tends to emphasize sheer luck. Which seems a strange thing to say since it would appear hard for two separate players to have very bad luck at the same time. But it's mainly due to the single-game aspect of the format: because of time constraints, you can't have 2HG tournament matches played over 3 games, so if you happen to be mana screwed in game 1, that's it, you're done. And, as it often turns out, you can't expect your teammate to be able to face two averagely lucky opponents alone. Granted, in a regular one-on-one match played over the best 2 out of 3 games, even if your deck is clearly superior to your opponent's, and you are definitely a better player, you can still lose a game due to a bad shuffler or an exceptional display of luck on the other side of the field. But the chances of this maddening scenario repeating itself twice in a row, albeit still real, aren't so high. It's a consideration that might look moot in general, but it's not when we're not dealing with casual games, but a proper tournament. Which, by the way, went down this way:

  • Event Number: 12 (2012), 64 (all-time)
  • Date: March 24
  • Attendance: 16
  • Rounds: 3
  • Special Rules: Two-Headed Giant
  • Top 4: Jeketerri (Goblin, undefeated, winning team) and VictorBike (Kithkin, undefeated, winning team); DirtyDuck (Human, 1 loss, runner-up team) and SBena (Zombie, 1 loss, runner-up team)
  • Special Prizes: none
  • Tribes: Artificer, Assassin, Carrier, Demon, Elder, Elemental, Goblin, Horror, Human, Kithkin, Metathran, Shapeshifter, Spirit, Wall, Wizard, Zombie
  • Virgin Tribe: Metathran by GWN (highest-ranked); Carrier by vantar6697

 All in all, we didn't see the broken decks or sick choices I was fearing, like a team made of a couple of random tribes as a mere shell for two Hive Mind combo decks (which would have had the weird peculiarity of winning by killing your teammate too, if your combo went off before his or her turn). And not a single Elf deck was there, which is already an accomplishment in the field of non-annoying play (the most basic version of fair play). Another typical issue of the 2HG format, though, is the tendency to overcontrol the board, especially by one dedicated team member playing super-heavy permission. Like maybe Cattavorus with his counter-happy Wizards?


 Actually, while playing against this deck myself (and badly losing to it), I had the impression of a much higher level of permission, which brings us again to the issue of the randomness of the single game match: seeing Cattavorus playing in rapid sequence such exotic pieces of counter magic as Foil and Thwart, you might get the idea that he was running a 20-counterspell deck or something. Instead, it was just a case of having two singleton copies of those spells, yet both in hand at the same time in that one game I could see. It remains a strong control deck, of course, with several Wizards performing the function of additional counterspells. But it's not the killer build I had thought (there are only two copies of Patron Wizard, for instance), and it uses a lot of different legendary guys, which makes it cool. By the way, the deck was paired with acgabs playing blade Artificers.

 A side note for Cattavorus and everybody else who submits their decklists to Blippy not using the client function that saves the decks in text format: please do that. Pretty please? If you try and type the cards yourself, you'll end up with typos and abbreviations (and possible ambiguities: if you write down just "ertai", I won't know if it was supposed to be Ertai, Wizard Adept or Ertai, the Corrupted; or better, I might be able to deduce it from the mana sources, like in this case, but it's not always so easy). This will cause erroneous entries in the software that's counting the cards for vantar6697's academic project (more on this in future installments), and will drive me mad in the process of reconstructing the lists for these articles. So please, just save your deck as .txt, open it in notepad, then copy & paste to Blippy's PM. It'll be faster for you too. And while we're at it, I'd also like to ask you to regroup each basic land as a single entry if you can, because when your deck has, say, 20 different versions of Forest, the client will create 20 separate entries of 1 Forest. I will like you very very much if you'll just turn that into one, nice, single entry.

 But let's move on, as we have a  lot of interesting decklists to feature this time. And this already tells us that in the end my concern for excessive control strategies paralyzing the games was unfounded. If anything, the winning team was all aggro, all the time. Behold, people, the ultimate Boros alliance of Goblin and Kithkin!

 

 Jeketerri managed to make me override my own rule of "No Elf, no Goblin lists", by submitting a truly mid-range Goblin build. No annoying Goblin Guides here! But still a strong and successful concoction (this is actually the first Goblin win and just their second Hall of Fame result this year. They're a little behind schedule, apparently). I also like the female power theme here, with lots of aunties, matrons, and witches: the other half of the Goblin sky is even more badass. As are the Kithkin piloted by VictorBike, who came back after a very long time in order to claim the title of ultimate master of the little dudes: his Kithkin deck was the very first Blippian Apocalypse winner in January 8, 2011, and a 4th place holder 2 weeks later. And these are the only three occurrences where the Kithkin made Hall of Fame points at all!

 

 The team ending second place (the other one getting points: I awarded only the first two teams, whose players got each half the sum of the usual Hall of Fame points awarded to their respective placements: to clarify, each member of the winning team got half the sum of a 1st and 2nd placement; each member of the runner-up team shared half of the 3rd and 4th placement quota) wasn't control again, and especially odd. In fact, SBena submitted his Zombie deck as the only single player needing a teammate (another single player registered, then disappeared):

 

 It's a nice build featuring all the most recent, mythic additions to the Zombie family: Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, Havengul Lich, and Mikaeus, the Unhallowed, this latter enabling a non-Melira endgame combo with Murderous Redcap. SBena found a teammate at the very last minute (or even some minutes later!) in DirtyDuck, a.k.a. the Third Horseman of the Tribal Apocalypse, which for some reason decided to play Aluren combo (using Human as a shell):

 

 Aluren is a strong archetype which during the Blippian Era was played only once by Ayanam1 (in his first outing, and consequently again during the 2011 Invitational as one of his winning decks). So, in the end, we had both aggro and combo for the win, in perfect Tribal style? It appears so.

 It also appears that people are liking the whole Virgin tribes business, because here's another of the Unplayed Ones being finally played: Metathran.

 

 The oddness of these strange, bluish guys is met by the overall odd choice of running a monoblue tribe within a pentacolored shell, exploiting unusual cards like Collective Restraint and Collapsing Borders. GWN is an interesting, creative deckbuilder for sure. He was teamed up with TrevaWhateva, another new face in town, who was running... Wall-Drazi? Not so much.

 

 Of course the Wall tribe, due to its inherent nature, needs to be given something to do, and a win condition to meet. But despite the presence of Kozilek (yet not Ulamog, it's worth noting), TrevaWhateva's idea wasn't just a reimagining of NemesisParadigm's uber-famous, hyper-successful deck. This is a more intricate combo deck where Crystal Shard recurrs Mnemonic Wall, which in turn recurs Time Stretch, locking the opponent out of the game. A second infinite recursion is the modern classic Academy Ruins for Mindslaver. It's all still requiring a good deal of mana ramp, but it's also a very different way to give the Walls an endgame (and Mnemonic's ability is exploited directly).

 Going back to the Virgin tribes, there was another one this time, the very one I featured last weekCarrier, brought to the field by vantar6697.

 

 It's not a bad tribe after all, and it's easy to build: they're all black, and they have the clear purpose of being removals-on-a-stick, albeit of the very slow variety (Thousand-Year Elixir helps with that). And they frequently end in the graveyard, so you want to recur them with things like Sheoldred, Beacon of Unrest, or (even better) Mimic Vat

 The Virgin Carriers were paired with a recently de-Virginized tribe: Elder, formerly staged by GWN, this time by Discorde, going for the Careful Study/Faithless Looting into Goryo's Vengeance approach (with Lava Spike for the Vengeance to be spliced onto).

 

 Again, I was giving 1 tix as a prize for the player who could win a game with the Elders, and again, it didn't happen. It's impossible to score even a single win with the old clunkers, apparently. Yet the challenge goes on: play Elder, folks! The tix is here waiting for you! This is like a new form of sadism, I know. But I believe part of the reason people is willing to try and break the Elders is because of the fascination they bring along: they are the original super-fattie dragons! Unfortunately, that dates back when the creatures were the most poorly designed part of the game.

 Let's complete the picture: the mihahitlor/Bauchelain Assassin/Demon connection had no joy at all; a little better went for me and Ayanam1, who ended the tournament at 4th place with a teamup between these Spirits, lead by Kokusho (which is a force to be reckoned with in multiplayer)...

 

 ...and the Shapeshifters who tried to copy the legendary Dragon Spirit, in order to generate an overwhelming single-strike of 20 life loss for the bad guys and 20 life gained for the good guys.

 

 That only happened once. I had the strangest of games actually, only seeing a grand total of 1 Liliana (who got countered), 1 Buried Alive, and 1 Recurring Nightmare, these latters showing up in different games, therefore accomplishing nothing. The one time the whole Kokusho business paid off was when I hardcasted him (Phyrexian Tower on the returning Spirits was a good tech for that), and Ayanam1 cloned him afterwards. For the rest of the time, my deck played like a half-assed Spirit aggro deck, essentially. I also had just bought 2 copies of Pernicious Deed, looking forward to the interaction with Sun Titan, but they never showed up. Oh well.

 Speaking of expensive stuff, the Force of Will in Ayanam1's deck triggered some comments about money cards. Now, I'm the first to applaud budget decks beating the shit out of money builds, and I'm absolutely certain that winning a tournament isn't just (or at all) a matter of having a great collection, especially in Tribal: just look at this week's 1st place decks. And in general, one of the reasons Elves and Goblins are so popular is because they're budget-friendly. This said, it's absolutely, ABSOLUTELY unfair to point out a player because he owns expensive cards and, God forbid, dares to play with them. First of all, you never know how much a player paid for a card at the time he put it into his collection. The prices are extremely fleeting, and some players are in the system since the beginning. Secondly, why is this even relevant? What's this, Occupy Wall Street? If that's the case, maybe one should verify the income of a player first, because I highly doubt a playset of Force of Will is a serious wealth indicator (we're so entangled in the micro-economy of MTGO, made of bulk cards worth $0.006, that we often forget that there's not even real currency in the everyday life to represent that, and even a high-profile planeswalker is just worth one pizza and movie night in the real world). I'd hate for a player who slowly and painfully put together enough tix to buy himself his dream cards (and I totally relate with this because it's what I'm doing) to end up being bullied only because he's playing those cards, which are deemed disproportionate to the event by some arbitrary measure. It's a ridiculous concept to begin with, not to mention the fact that in this meta we see most players owning their fair share of expensive cards, especially since when Wasteland and big Jace dropped around 30 tix or below, and now they're everywhere. Moreso, as it has been theorized many times, FoW isn't even this great card in Tribal, where you rarely have broken win conditions to stop in the first few turns, so it quickly becomes a bad counterspell with severe card disadvantage embedded in it (when we built those decks, FoW came to mind as a mean to protect Kokusho from instant exilers, which is the same reason Chalice of the Void is there, the Shapeshifter deck not being able to play as a permission deck, because the shifters are mana intensive and need to be played to defend the board and to enable the endgame). End of rant.

 Let's wrap this chronicle by featuring two last (but not least) interesting decks from a team of veteran Tribal players. Winter.Wolf was playing this Elemental deck, based on the interaction between evoke and one of the coolest cards ever,  Sundial of the Infinite.

 

 It had a good complement (as far as coolness goes, anyway) in the Horror deck by AJ_Impy, where Geralf's Mindcrusher and  Nemesis of Reason do the milling, Sewer Nemesis and Guiltfeeder harvest the fruits of that, and Phyrexian Obliterator just scares the shit out of everyone.  

 

 Of course the coolest card here is Hunted Horror. It's usually hard to outlive the Centaur tokens for a black deck, but in 2HG, you can give the Centaurs to the opponent you're not facing! Great thought, so very AJ.

 And that's it for today. See you next time in the Tribal room!

24 Comments

I think the discussion of by JustSin at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 10:16
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I think the discussion of money cards in relation to FoW is a bit off since it didn't do that great lol also perhaps a bit disappointed to not see more decks playing to a team theme as opposed to just putting two decks together

You're right on both by Kumagoro42 at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 13:34
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You're right on both accounts. I and Aya had the Story of Kokusho and His Evil Twin, and I liked the idea of Spirits teaming up with Shapeshifters (also Elementals and Shapeshifters would have felt right to me, flavor-wise), but that's just it. Not something to write home about as far as themes go, probably.

My own laughing at FOW had by Paul Leicht at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 10:50
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My own laughing at FOW had nothing to do with its expensiveness and everything to do with what it countered. My Sudden Disappearance which was going to kill 3 centaur tokens. And my reaction I admit was born more out of exhausted hysteria than anything truly funny. (It seemed hilarious to me at the time.)

I think AJ's comment was probably more inline with what I should have said: The quote from your own last article about who will keep the spirit of the event and who will try to break it. It seemed you were foreshadowing your own determination to win at all costs a "casual" event. Which is just fine but rather funny in the context of your quote.

Our decks perhaps could have been a little better prepared but his 2x draw to 2 lands in both early games were not helpful and facing combo Aluren and then your own combo was not particularly fun. FOW just was the icing on the cake and its irrelevance is what I was laughing about. (He didn't have to cast it to win since his tokens did nothing anyway and you were going to win with 2x Kokusho on your turn.)

My apologies if my comments and genuine amusement were offensive to you. I tried to keep it from being an argument because it really wasn't. I think it is awesome Aya who is an innovator and who beat NP in the champs of the apoc this year can afford to bring FOW to a game. It isn't my intention to say people shouldn't. Bring them though perhaps as you say it isn't really the card to play in tribal. Planeswalkers fare better. Looking at his list I probably would have run +1 Jace 2.0 and some more wraths. 4 seems a little low. Chalice for 1 was also amusing because neither of us had any cards to cast at that cost but we kept our giggles in check on that count. It was probably a wise move vs the myriad of 1 cost hosers including the exilers, grafdigger's cage, elixir, etc.

We did roll over poor Mihahitlor and Bauchelain who just had no luck against our decks when AJ finally got a decent draw. Unfortunately for them they were playing "fair" decks too and our "fair" decks were luckier and had more removal. They were great sports though and made the event fun to play in.

If I were to do it again Id definitely choose AJ as my partner and we'd still play something funky and not necessarily fair but still within the bounds of the spirit of the contest. Because AJ rocks the weird tribes and makes my ideas seem better.

Ok, first of all, if you by Kumagoro42 at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 13:41
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Ok, first of all, if you don't intend to raise an argument, don't do jackass comments, with both teammates reinforcing each other like proper high school bullies. If it was lighthearted, it didn't sound so. Sorry if I got it the wrong way then.

BUT...

You DID bring up the MONEY COST of Sudden Disappearance (a few cents or so). So, what was that for? Do FoW would have been ok if used against a money card? What's the level of card FoW is ok to be used against? And let me get this straight: had he used a Counterspell on the Disappearance, there would have been no comment?

The irrelevance: so you just laugh in the face of your opponents when they do something you think it's a bad move? How's that fair?
And for your information, you're also wrong about that (in fact, you couldn't know): at that point, I had no second Kokusho in hand, no Recurring, no anything. And Aya didn't have anything either, except counterspells (he draw into a clone next). Your spell was killing all his defenses. What should we have done?

All in all, it seems like you can put FoW in your deck, but you better not use it because it's unfair? So, FoW is unsportsmanlike by definition and shouldn't be played, despite the fact that it's a mediocre card in Tribal? Just because it's the big bad FoW? I'm sure you see the absurdity of this.
But if you want to know the whole story, I asked Aya to put FoW in his deck (then second-guessed myself, because I knew it was the road to card disadvantage) because he used it just once in Tribal Apocalypse before: against me in the Invitational, guessing I was using combo on Round 3. I wanted to see it played against someone else for a change! (And within the very strange flow of this event, I think he ended up having it in hand only that one time against you).

Third, my God, the comment I wrote here announcing the event? That was a joke, like most of the things I write in these cases. I wrote the absolute opposite at the end of the following article: "you will find if people will find a way to cheat against the spirit of the event" (sarcastically barred and "replaced" with "will have a great time with multiplayer Tribal Wars"). Didn't you notice that as well?

But how is putting FoW in a deck trying to "win at all cost"? I was operating on the assumption everyone was trying to win very badly actually, because my experience of 2HG made me wary of the cutthroat choices people do in this format (it turns out, the standard crowd is more cutthroat than the tribal crowd. Good to know). To me, "winning at all cost" is more something you do by running Goblin+Kithkin (which is cool, btw, I still like the flavor of that coupling). Last time I checked, Shapeshifters weren't the most badass tribe in the game. And maybe if we wanted to "win at all cost" we had our decks properly tested (which, as you know, I'm never so eager to do, to my shame, and Aya often ends up playing the decks "cold" too). There were a few bad calls in there, and we also got the seating order all wrong.

This is how it went: Aya asked me to team up. I told him I just wanted to use the Liliana Spirit deck again. And since Kokusho is amazing in 2HG (and not by playing around its wording, like Serra Ascendant: Kokusho is actually supposed to be stronger in multiplayer), what if we paired him up with his Evil Twin? (Which, you may notice, actually IS evil, as he kills Kokusho after all!) So, Ub Shapeshifters, Aya thought it was cool, and we met a couple times online to discuss the composition of his deck. We mainly feared StP on Kokusho and a truckload of counter magic. Chalice of the Void was the solution to StP, it was meant to be set to 1 all the time (it actually helped against the Elder deck), since both of us didn't run anything at 1. While running an essentially monoblue deck, putting some counters in there to protect against enemy counters sounded just right, so FoW came up, since Shapeshifters need mana and Aya's board needed something to block with (at that point I think there were more early mana-intensive stuff like Shapesharer, which got dropped in the end), and FoW would allow to cast a shifter and still be able to counter. In hindsight, probably Cryptic Command would have been better.

End of the Novel of My Unsatisfying, Overly Bitter (and Very Probably Final) 2HG Adventure.

Peace. This is not a topic by AJ_Impy at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 16:31
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Peace. This is not a topic worth getting upset over, from either side. Feelings run high in competition, but perspective is better when out of it. I agree with you on the problem of matches versus games within two headed giant PREs.

Peace, absolutely. I wonder by Kumagoro42 at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 15:09
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Peace, absolutely.

I wonder if 2 out of 3 matches are logistically possible in a 2HG tournament. Maybe with an overall time limit?

20 mins per side maybe. Half by Paul Leicht at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 16:18
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20 mins per side maybe. Half an hour tops.

The thing is, a 4-player by AJ_Impy at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 16:26
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The thing is, a 4-player match will inherently take substantially more time than a duel. Twice as many lands, cards drawn, people needing to ok every interaction. Add to that team discussions. I don't think there's scope for a best of 3 2hg 3-round tournament, as the potential to go long is massive, as well as the fact the games are likely to be more taxing on the players due to length and potential complexity. Nine 2HG games in quick succession is almost painful to contemplate.

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I have some experience in running 2HG events, and I can say with certainty that 2/3 is not an option, unless you're willing to spend UP TO 3 HOURS PER ROUND! Even artificial time limits (allowing a player 15 minutes of clock time/round) wouldn't help much in this regard. This is simply the nature of 2HG.

I, for one, am not willing to sit through that.

prices by Stu Benedict at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 13:55
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Good logic behind your price argument in the article.

Reya used to be 50 tix.

My Fact or Fictions and Llanowar Wastes cost me way more than my FoWs (13 tix) ....

Wastelands were 2 tix for a while.

Price can never ever be a factor.

Well Kuma you can choose to by Paul Leicht at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 14:09
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Well Kuma you can choose to make a cause cel├ęb about this and be bitter and angry over a trite comment that probably shouldn't have been made or you can rise above it. After all we have had many good conversations in the past and despite your insistence on taking umbrage I know you to be a fair-minded person. I agree that FOW should be allowed to be played. In the moment I think your response to my comment was over the top as much as mine was inappropriate. Which imho is uncharacteristic of you. That you are still angry and full of ire speaks volumes about you more than it does about my social faux pas.

In regards to that I think I would have responded in some fashion no matter what counter he used. It was a meaningless play and was amusing to me. Defenseless? Maybe but then I had nothing to attack with so not exactly a huge deal that. Also I was tired and annoyed with the way the game unraveled and not terribly happy with having to face one broken combo deck after another. There was also the comment that AJ made which seemed just to me in the moment.

Did you really write that blurb in your article as a joke? This has been a bone of contention in the Apocalypse for years now. Fair decks vs unfair decks. Decks that sidestep the agreed upon rules (shoehorned legacy decks for example) to do something broken because technically it is allowed even if it is outside of the spirit of the format. Not saying this shouldn't happen (it is one way to combat Goblins/Elves) but you yourself have been on both sides of this argument.

If it was in jest then why are you now angry? Take the win, acknowledge the irony and move on?

Agreed about cryptic command. Totally great in so many ways in the format. All of its modes are useful.

It makes me sad that you are announcing an end to your involvement with 2 head giant games (or so it seems) though of course that's your decision.

I'm not angry! I just don't by Kumagoro42 at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 15:07
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I'm not angry! I just don't like those type of "smiling attacks" during a game. I would have the exact same feeling I had been just a watcher in that game. Nobody deserves to be attacked, even jokingly, because he chose to make a play, for as bad as that would be (and even starting an argument where the player has to explain his or her reasons for the play isn't the best way to go in my opinion). I thought it was about the money (hence my argument in the article, which still stands), and since it wasn't, I made my point about everything else in my previous comment. And now I move on.

And yeah, 2HG was already worn out to me before this event (which was still something to try, among other possible Tribal variants). It should bring out the best in the players but for a complex series of reasons it brings out the worst instead. That's why I made the second joke about it, I remember how essentially the standard 2HG scene was the terrain to find the most horrible and unfunny ways to break the format.

But if people had fun with this event and want to do another Tribal 2HG in the future, I'll support it to Blippy. I'm going to launch a bit of a poll in the next article, asking if maybe people grew tired of having a monthly Endangered Week and which other variants would be more appreciated within a possible rotation of Very Special Weeks, so that Blippy will be able to take an informed decision.

I enjoy having a good team by Paul Leicht at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 16:17
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I enjoy having a good team mate which is why I played 2hg with you more than once and why Id play Tribal 2hg partnered with AJ any time any place. No matter what our opponents bring.

As far as post game quips, remarks, asshattery etc, I think in some senses you have to take such things with some salt and water and not get caught up in how unfair it is to be painted badly when you bring a deck that some object to.

Aluren combo (Or dreamhalls for that matter I think) is such a deck and obviously in normal TWL Goblins is too. Though I am really not sure how people didnt beat the goblin/kithkin decks to dust in the format. 40 life is a lot harder to beat down than 20. Particularly if you are playing heavy removal. I would have LOVED to be paired against those guys.

Sometimes I think the way the apocalypse goes is entirely based on pairings.

I am not exciting by endangered weeks (and haven't been since flips left or before that even) because they aren't any more in the spirit of the format than the normal weeks are. Endangered just means a slightly worse shell for our favorite Legacy decks.

Switching it up might be good for morale.

I believe the way most by Kumagoro42 at Thu, 04/05/2012 - 18:28
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I believe the way most non-pro-level, eternal-format-with-extremely-unpredictable-meta tournaments go is entirely based on pairings. Tribal even more, of course, because of the lack of sideboard, and the tendency of most players to not worry about that and just build decks that go all-in. That's why Teferi's Moat is one of the most powerful, unsung cards in the format right now. I rarely use it (essentially only in builds that fetch it via Academy Rector), but I see both Goblin decks and even Elf decks not packing a single way out. Same for most white weenie builds that are more concerned about pumping and killing creatures.

I did the same careless mistake several times myself, of course. And even not doing it, while sometimes I got paired with decks that suffered mine greatly, some other times I got paired with decks that hosed/outraced mine in spectacular fashion. But this is the kind of bad luck it should be easier to accept: your deck went well, your opponents were better (or better against you), more honor to them.

I'm still fond of Endangered, by AJ_Impy at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 16:35
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I'm still fond of Endangered, but it does tend to attract the shoehorning mentality a fair bit. Hell, I've been guilty of that myself with my 12post ramp decks (Gargoyles are cool, but given the golems and eldrazi decks I've run with a similar shell, I have to hold my hand up here as part of the problem).

2HG can be fun, and I certainly had fun the previous 2HG special event. I had fun in this one at least in the final match, but landscrew can happen to anyone and isn't worth getting upset over long term. Uninteractive decks could be a problem: In a format without sideboards, the temptation to pair combo with control to strengthen both is a concern, rendering the tribal aspect moot.

The Horror/Elemental pairing by AJ_Impy at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 14:12
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The Horror/Elemental pairing has some sick synergies: His Aethersnipes and Sudden disappearances dealing with centaur tokens, my mill giving potential targets for his beacons of unrest, even the potential for Lily's ultimate, whilst his discard from Lily and the mournwhelks helps to feed my sewer nems and guiltfeeders.

very true, those synergies by JustSin at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 14:26
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very true, those synergies didn't jump out right away, but it is nice to see some

2hg just has so many great opportunities to interact not only with an opponent, but with a partner that I feel could be addressed more

I had a lot of fun with this! by AnimalWedding at Tue, 04/03/2012 - 20:50
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I had a lot of fun with this! 2HG has always been MTGO's best casual format in my opinion, and I'd love to see this done more often. That bread and butter beat-down decks won overall in a 40 life game was pretty cool to see, especially with all the rough competition packing combos and heavy removal.

And yeah, being new to this event I had no idea Walls were so feared before I spoke to someone who cited NemesisParadigm's build. Luckily, I had already decided on a different strategy (recursion over pure power), but hopefully my next few decks will be a bit fresher. I was looking through the list and it's pretty shocking the coverage, as well as the lack of coverage for certain tribes I thought would be played more often like Birds and Druids.

I decided against bringing my Birds Aluren deck at the last moment (essentially the same thing as the Legacy build except with BoP instead of Hierarch, and Raven Familiar instead of Oracle), but in hindsight it might have been funny to see what would happen in the mirror match.

Don't worry about Walls, your by Kumagoro42 at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 15:31
Kumagoro42's picture

Don't worry about Walls, your build was different enough, and cool!
Also, Nemesis hasn't been running WallDrazi since months (actually, he's not been around in a while, but he was trying several different tribes lately). Walls are free to be played without worry again (they're an important, if peculiar, component of the Tribal world). I've done it myself in the following event I still have to report about.

Yeah, some classic tribes have not seen enough play in these 64 events. This is a bit of a community after all, and some choices by returning players influence the community as a whole. For instance, we have seen a lot of Zuberas, because we have a couple of dedicated Zubera players. I can imagine a different meta where Zuberas are never played.

Careful with Aluren, guys. It's an ok card/archetype if it shows up only once in a while, but if it will become a weekly thing, there's a good chance it will get banned from the event. JustSin said it right in his last article, the bannings aren't as much about the power of a card in the vacuum, as they are about cards fueling decks that start showing up everywhere, overtaking the meta. Most of the cards in our additional banned list would be fine if there wasn't the risk of the respective decks taking over the event for a while. It happened with Glimpse of Nature and Thopter Foundry, and to a lesser extent with Hypergenesis. It never happened with Sneak Attack, for instance: that and the others are preventive bannings. I sometime wonder if it wouldn't be better to "liberalize" the cards that still have to prove themselves annoying, let them run wild for a while, THEN ban them for good after they misbehaved, meaning with that ruining the meta on a consistent basis, not just having a guy going 4-0 with a Sneak Attack deck once in 15 events.

Sneak attack isn't without by Paul Leicht at Wed, 04/04/2012 - 16:12
Paul Leicht's picture

Sneak attack isn't without inherent dangers. I would be against preemptively banning such a card and or Show and Tell despite the incredibly annoying and non-interactivity of such decks.

I might actually be around to by StealthBadger at Thu, 04/05/2012 - 10:04
StealthBadger's picture

I might actually be around to play this saturday(!). Is it endangered week, or just standard tribal?

Also, on a totally random note, I had the inklings of a tribal deck I will never ever be able to afford to build. So out of interest, has anybody paired tallowisp and geist of st. traft for some kind of monstrous spirit-aggro yet?

Glad to see you in Tribal! by Kumagoro42 at Thu, 04/05/2012 - 18:13
Kumagoro42's picture

Glad to see you in Tribal! This week is Endangered, being a first week of the month.

And yes, Saint Traft/Tallowisp has been tried, with some success, by Ayanam1 some weeks ago.

hi by carsteering48 at Fri, 04/06/2012 - 06:24
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Dodge Ram Truck Power Steering Rack

Insightful by apaulogy at Fri, 04/06/2012 - 11:32
apaulogy's picture

Wow. Thanks BOT for letting us know that security has been compromised.

You rock AND there is no way I'll ever drive one of those POSs.