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By: TheWolf, Shane Garvey
Dec 26 2017 1:00pm
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If you are a regular reader of my articles, you will know I love Vintage Cube. And now it's back, and hanging around for longer than normal! I'm not going to waste any more words - let's draft!

THE DRAFT

  Pack 1 pick 1:

  My Pick:

Unlike a normal draft, where you try and stay open as much as possible in the first few picks, in Vintage Cube you are trying to draft what is basically a constructed deck, so you need to get into it early. For this reason, I like to pick cards that are key parts of archetypes. For me, in this pack, that meant taking Tinker. There is lots of support for artifact decks, and this is a good part of it.


  Pack 1 pick 2:

  My Pick:

In this pack, I was hoping to pick up something to go with Tinker, but alas it was not to be. Instead, there is an Honor of the Pure which is important for white aggro decks, as well as Rofellos, Llanowar Emissary which is crucial for green ramp. I took Rofellos as I think he is a bit more important for his deck than the enchantment.


  Pack 1 pick 3:

  My Pick:

In this pack, I have two good choices to go with my first picks - Metalworker for an artifact deck, or Green Sun's Zenith for a ramp deck. I decided to go with Metalworker, mainly because I have drafted the ramp deck a bunch before and haven't played with the artifact deck nearly as much.


  Pack 1 pick 4:

  My Pick:

I was pretty tempted by Sylvan Library here, but ended up taking Smokestackan artifact.


  Pack 1 pick 5:

  My Pick:

Basalt Monolith is a good pick up here. It goes in any deck, fits the artifact theme, and let's you cast 6 or 7 mana cards on turn 4. Easy pick.


  Pack 1 pick 6:

  My Pick:

There are some good cards in this pack - Batterskull, Cryptic Command and Birds of Paradise all jump out to me. I took Batterskull, again on the basis of it being an artifact.

Whilst it looks like Metalworker is going to be good, I'd like to find some bigger targets for Tinker


  Pack 1 pick 7:

  My Pick:

The only artifact in this pack is (Verdrous Gearhulk), and I took it. This pick actually became an important pick in the draft, as you will see. 


  Pack 1 pick 8:

  My Pick:

I looked at Sword of Feast and Famine initially but realised I didn't have that many creatures. I took Noble Hierarch instead; although the artifact decks are usually blue/red, this helps me cast my previous pick should I need to.


  Pack 1 pick 9:

  My Pick:

Umezawa's Jitte is a limited bomb, though like the Sword pick before, I don't have a lot of creatures yet. In hindsight I should have taken Rishkar, Peema Renegade, for reasons you will soon see.


  Pack 1 pick 10:

  My Pick:

It was at this point that I looked over my pool and realised that a) I still hadn't seen any Tinker targets and b) with Rofellos, Basalt Monolith, Noble Hierarch and the Gearhulk, I could potentially back-door into the green ramp deck. That was why I took Den Protector here; while it does nothing to further the goals of a ramp deck, it can play an important role in it.


  Pack 1 pick 11:

  My Pick:

I took Mutavault as I was still hedging my bets, but had I thought about it longer, Green Sun's Zenith would have been the pick.


  Pack 1 pick 12:

  My Pick:

In the next few picks, I manage to pick up some incidental green spells that could fit into the ramp deck. Pack 2 will decide where I ultimately end up; if I can open a good Tinker target, I will probably pivot back into the deck, but if not I can try and go into green ramp.


  Pack 1 pick 13:

  My Pick:


  Pack 1 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 1 pick 15:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 1:

  My Pick:

I wanted to take Time Walk here, I really did. But I made an adult choice and took Izzet Signet. The reason? It goes well in both the artifact and the ramp deck, so I could still pivot either way.


  Pack 2 pick 2:

  My Pick:

Now it was time to plant my flag and commit to a deck. Craterhoof Behemoth or Kuldotha Forgemaster? I ended up going for Craterhoof - I still had no targets for Tinker, so decided to pivot into green.


  Pack 2 pick 3:

  My Pick:

And am immediately glad I did, as I picked up Channel. I really want to see some Eldrazi Titans now!


  Pack 2 pick 4:

  My Pick:

Now that I have the direction I am going in sorted out, Arbor Elf was an easy pick. If I had have stuck with artifacts, I could have taken Torrential Gearhulk.


  Pack 2 pick 5:

  My Pick:

The cheap ramp is important to this deck, so Elves of Deep Shadow was the pick over Freyalise, Llanowar's Fury for me here.


  Pack 2 pick 6:

  My Pick:

Reclamation Sage is actually an important part of the cube, as it can hit many important cards, but I wasn't going to go past Oracle of Mul Daya


  Pack 2 pick 7:

  My Pick:

Yes. Yes, yes, yes. Emrakul, the Promised End is perfect with Channel. I would really like Fastbond as well, but no way I could go past the Eldrazi having taken Channel earlier.


  Pack 2 pick 8:

  My Pick:

I'm not sure if Woodfall Primus or Llanowar Elves was the right pick here; it probably didn't matter so much, but I took the ramp target.


  Pack 2 pick 9:

  My Pick:

I'm happy to take Primal Command here over Beast Within. Both cards are good, but I like Primal Command better.


  Pack 2 pick 10:

  My Pick:

Also happy to take Harmonize. I sometimes cut it in these decks, but we'll see.


  Pack 2 pick 11:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 12:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 13:

  My Pick:

I'm not a huge fan of Freyalise, Llanowar's Fury, but it might make the cut.


  Pack 2 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 2 pick 15:

  My Pick:

Acidic Slime this late is very handy.


  Pack 3 pick 1:

  My Pick:

There were a few choices here, none of which stood out massively, but all of which would have been fine: Master of the Wild Hunt, Rakdos Signet, Wurmcoil Engine and (Traverse the Ulvenweld). I ended up taking the Engine; it's just an annoying card for my opponents to deal with.


  Pack 3 pick 2:

  My Pick:

Gaea's Cradle. Next!


  Pack 3 pick 3:

  My Pick:

I'm not sure if Oath of Nissa or Deranged Hermit was the pick here. I ended up taking the Hermit because Squirrels, but Oath might have been correct.


  Pack 3 pick 4:

  My Pick:

Although I took Nissa, Worldwaker, Yavimaya Elder was probably the correct pick. Of course I would have liked Terastodon as well.


  Pack 3 pick 5:

  My Pick:

Ulamog, the Infinite Gyre is another easy pick, as there was nothing else in the pack anyway. 


  Pack 3 pick 6:

  My Pick:

This one was an easy Genesis Wave pick.


  Pack 3 pick 7:

  My Pick:

 And this was an easy Wall of Roots pick.


  Pack 3 pick 8:

  My Pick:

Fauna Shaman is an underrated card. It is great in a deck like this: late in the game, if you draw a mana dork, you can bin it for a ramp target.


  Pack 3 pick 9:

  My Pick:

Although I didn't look at Kitchen Finks when this pack first came around, I actually think taking it now over Master of the Wild Hunt and Traverse the Ulvenwald is correct. Aggro decks (white or red) are a strong archetype in this cube, so having a source of life gain could be important.


  Pack 3 pick 10:

  My Pick:

Song of the Dryads is a good card. It deals with Planeswalkers and other troublesome permanents cleanly and efficiently, and I'm happy to include it.


  Pack 3 pick 11:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 12:

  My Pick:

Again, Yavimaya Elder might have been the correct pick here, but it is hard to go past Terastodon.


  Pack 3 pick 13:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 14:

  My Pick:


  Pack 3 pick 15:

  My Pick:

 

THE DECK

I'm fairly happy with how it turned out in the end, despite not really moving into it early. I'd like some more mana elves, but it is what it is. Still, I have some cheap ramp and some excellent targets for it, so I'm hoping it will get me to at least a 2-1 result.

RESULTS

I got exactly what I hoped for: a 2-1 result (5-4 in games). I was able to cast Channel into Emrakul, the Promised End multiple times, which is living the dream, really. I never used Craterhoof Behemoth, which was unfortunate, and found myself sideboarding in Acidic Slime enough that I will main deck it next time. My pick of Terastodon over Yavimaya Elder was justified on numerous occasions, especially when one of my opponents played Mana Flare, which let me get first use of it, allowing me to cast the elephant and blow up his Mana Flare and two of his lands. That is a real risk with Mana Flare, actually - your opponent usually gets to use it first.

I'll be back next week with another Vintage Cube draft. Until then, you can catch me on Facebook and Twitter.

FIRST PICK, FIRST PACK

Here is a Vintage Cube booster I took from the pack generator on CubeTutor.com. What would you take first pick, first pack?