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By: draftbetter, Draftbetter
Dec 11 2008 5:38am
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This draft walkthrough is part of an ongoing series as my site, draftbetter.com. Check it out for even more recaps and other MTGO stuff.

I finally made it into another 8-4 draft so let's go.

Pack One

Pick One:

p1p1

I like a bunch of spells in this pack but the Ranger of Eos pretty much commits me to a Bant type deck, same with the other rare and it has a heavier requirement. To stay the most open, I took the removal.

Magma Spray

Pick Two:

p1p2

From a loaded pack down to this weakling of a pick. I always like the mana acceleration though and it will allow me to continue with my first pick.

Druid of the Anima

Pick Three:

p1p3

Tough choice here. I like the Wild Nacatl, but not as much as the Iguanar. There is also the hope of getting something back from this pack as there are many strong picks here.

Hissing Iguanar

Pick Four:

p1p4

The tri-land is the best card in the pack and maybe I should have taken it. I went for the best non-land card in the pack though.

Dregscape Zombie

Pick Five:

p1p5

Ah, a card that I like, is in my hoped for shard and I am always getting battered for passing it.

Rakeclaw Gargantuan

Pick Six:

p1p6

I decided not to branch out into black just yet. I'll go for the fetch land.

Jund Panorama

Pick Seven:

p1p7

The second Druid seems late.

Druid of the Anima

Pick Eight:

p1p8

Not much, this is a pretty easy pick.

Gift of the Gargantuan

Pick Nine:

p1p9

Stone cold nothing. I'll take the best card in the pack.

Undead Leotau

Pick Ten:

p1p10

Easy pick for the battle trick. Another draft with a late Waveskimmer.

Sigil Blessing

Pick Eleven:

p1p11

Nothing to see here.

Hindering Light

Pick Twelve:

p1p12

Cancel

Pick Thirteen:

p1p13

Bloodthorn Taunter

Pick Fourteen:

p1p14

Lush Growth

Pick Fifteen:

Swamp

Pack Two

Pick One:

p2p1

Nice rare for the Grixis player. I'll have to settle with the best removal spell in the set.

Branching Bolt

Pick Two:

p2p2

With no real quality creatures, this removal is an easy pick.

(Souls Fire)

Pick Three:

p2p3

This pick is pretty easy. The Charm is by far the best spell over the Battlemage.

Naya Charm

Pick Four:

p2p4

I was going to take the Jungle Weaver here, but decided the land was a way better choice.

Naya Panorama

Pick Five:

p2p5

It's not my favorite, but it's not a terrible card. Not any real choice anyway.

Rip-Clan Crasher

Pick Six:

p2p6

Playing one of these maindeck every time I'm in green.

Naturalize

Pick Seven:

p2p7

It's a late Battlemage and I like that the green ability is the one I'll be using.

Jund Battlemage

Pick Eight:

p2p8

Back to nothing, seems like every time I'm in green, so is everyone else. I'll take the white bounce spell.

Excommunicate

Pick Nine:

p3p9

I did not expect this one to wheel. Easy pick.

Hissing Iguanar

Pick Ten:

p3p10

This guy is way better than a tenth pick.

Kathari Screecher

Pick Eleven:

p3p11

Volcanic Submersion

Pick Twelve:

p2p12

Onyx Goblet

Pick Thirteen:

p2p13

Cathartic Adept

Pick Fourteen: Missed Graphic

Bloodthorn Taunter

Pick Fifteen:

Plains

Pack Three

Pick One:

p3p1

I'm not sure how many times I've seen that particular Mythic Rare, but it's always crap. To the pick, it was a hard one. I like the O-Ring but the Charger give me pause. Please let me know which pick I should have made as I took the removal.

Oblivion Ring

Pick Two:

p3p2

It's removal and a creature and the target of much discussion this last week. Plus, it's probably the card I want most in my deck.

Bloodpyre Elemental

Pick Three:

p3p3

More removal that I am happy to have.

(Souls Fire)

Pick Four:

p3p4

Not a bad pick and one I'll be happy to take here as it fills that early drop and gets me to more cards.

Elvish Visionary

Pick Five:

p3p5

This is just the sort of card I was hoping for out of this pack.

Naya Battlemage

Pick Six:

p3p6

I don't mind having two of this trick in my deck. If my Jund Battlemage gets going, the (Gaeas Anthem) effect might help me win.

Sigil Blessing

Pick Seven:

p3p7

Well, well, well. Talk about a windmill slam.

Woolly Thoctar

Pick Eight:

p3p8

Some nice late cards for me are never going to be turned down.

Rakeclaw Gargantuan

Pick Nine:

p3p9

I hate playing the Obelisks if I don't need them. They take a slot away from a spell and they just seem so slow. I know I don't want that Swerve coming back to bite me.

Swerve

Pick Ten:

p3p10

Might be time to try one of these in my deck.

Relic of Progenitus

Pick Eleven:

p3p11

Not much to explain here.

Welkin Guide

Pick Twelve:

p3p12

Onyx Goblet

Pick Thirteen:

p3p13

Swerve

Pick Fourteen:

p3p14

(Behemoths Herald)

Pick Fifteen:

Forest

Final Deck

Final Deck

Don't know what happened to the four slot. I was actively looking throughout most of the draft four those four drops, just didn't seem to find any. I do seem to have some pretty high quality spells. I played sixteen land because of the two Druids, the Relic and the Visionary.

Matches

After that last draft, I got my rating up to 1772 and I'll be facing a high caliber opponent in round one rated at 1755. I missed the graphic for my first opener, but it was also a one lander so I went to these six:

r1g1 Open2

Can't keep that on the play, here's my five:

r1g1 Open3

This has to be the one. One Forest and I'm off, maybe. I actually draw pretty nutty and have a turn four Woolly Thoctar and he was discarding. Don't know what he started with, but he's in green and his opener didn't include that.

r1g1 End

On to game two where I start with this hand:

r1g2 Open

Seems pretty exciting to me, I keep. I get down the Druid on turn two, but I haven't drawn any beef as of yet. On turn three I swing with the Druid and cast the Jund Battlemage. He has an early Bloodpyre Elemental thanks to an Obelisk which he uses to kill my Battlemage. I continue to swing through with my Druid and play more land. My opponent uses his fast mana start to drop big creatures which I use my O-Ring on the first, a Mosstodon. Then he follows that with a Yoked Plowbeast. I have to get creatived to kill it and end up using my Sigil Blessing, a Soul's Fire and my Magma Spray on. The good thing, is that he seems to be out of spells.

I have continued to attack him low and get down a Hissing Iguanar along with the two Druids as my first creatures draw since my opening hand. My opponent played out a Sigil of Distinction for a bunch.

r1g1 Midgame1

On the next turn, he goes to Realm Razer me and I figure his plan is to equip the Sigil and swing me down by ten points. I had tapped my mana in response though and popped the Sigil with my Naturalize. I think I made a mistake to trade my Iguanar for his Realm Razer on the next turn though as I had a mana advantage and could win any race with the cards on the board.

r1g1 Midgame2

He of course blocks and we all get our land back. I figure I have to draw something big soon, I've played all my small creatures after I draw my Visionary. Unfortunately, I pick this time to go on a land binge and even though it took a couple turns, my opponent finally drew something relevant.

r1g1 Midgame3

Well shucks. I try to make a go of it, but by the time the game ends, I have gotten out 16 of the 18 mana sources in my deck and the life totals have been completely reversed

.r1g2 End

That was not pleasant. and I think I cost myself that game, but too late now, let's move on to game three. I start just fine:

r1g3 Open

Early drops, removal and card draw, here we go. I have the Relic on turn one and the Iguanar on turn three. Turn four, still not land, but I do have a Battlemage, just no white mana yet.

r1g3 Midgame1

Meanwhile, on the other side of the board, my opponent has achieved Nirvana by playing a turn five Battlegrace Angel against a mana screwed opponent. The beats don't stop there though.

r1g3 Midgame2

it doesn't take much more to push me over the edge.

r1g3 End

I had to use the Relic just to get that fourth land. Obviously, different result if I get more than just the three land that I started with five draw steps later.

Summary

I end the draft at 1763 and no prize. Hate to break a win streak, but it can't last forever. I felt about one big creature away from winning that second game and I was never really in that third game. Them's the breaks.

Not much I can say here, I felt like I was in the shard I was supposed to be in. I showed the deck to my brother and he said this one was better than my last one that I won with. I'm not so sure though, you guys will let me know though.

Until next time,

draftbetter

4 Comments

by Rafael(Unregistered) 80.218.235.167 (not verified) at Sun, 12/14/2008 - 01:58
Rafael(Unregistered) 80.218.235.167's picture

p1p1: I think you did underestimate the Ranger of Eos. As iceage4life already mentioned it can and should you commit more to Naya. This card can turn games around. Think about it: it doesn't matter if you play it in late or early game (alltough in early game it's much stronger), but even in late game you pick out the low-mana creatures out of your deck, what not only may give you 2 times a 3/3 creature (Nactals in Naya) but also increases the chances of drawing a fatty or missing mana. But it's a tough decision, with all the unearth creatures in the set, magma spray is always an good choice.

p2p4: Bad choice in my opinion. You already have plenty of mana fixing. Alltough it's still important it shouldn't have priority. Scourge Devil is an amazing card that can turn the games around and thanks to it's unearth ability no-one actually likes to kill this one. You already did let him go in p1p3, what may be OK, but here for me the much better choice. 

p3p12: Since you are missing fatties, I would had taken the  Rockcaster Platoon here. It's right that he is expensive but it's the better choice than to hate-pick the goblet.

 

To the deck building:

I again ag ree with iceage4life, this deck didn't seem so strong to me. You had a lot of low-budget creatures, but nothing to get rith of them. There was no devour-creature around what's kind of bad. Excommunicate is a very underestimated card. You did not play this card, what's a big mistake. Give the card a try and you will start to love it! I didn't play it for a long time, but when i got raped several times due to this card I started to understand it's true power. Over the last couple of drafts it saved me several time. No matter if it did bounce the last blocker for the final attack or the big-token-fatty or if I was mana-short and it did just buy me time.Remember: if you play this on turn 3 on a wolly, your opponent loses his turn what gives you the time draw for a real solution!

by Francisco(Unregistered) 189.120.152.13 (not verified) at Fri, 12/12/2008 - 13:30
Francisco(Unregistered) 189.120.152.13's picture

agree with the panorama there and you shoul´ve played 17 lands at least.

by iceage4life at Thu, 12/11/2008 - 07:49
iceage4life's picture

I didn't think this deck was good.  Maindeck Naturalize is a mistake in this format, maindeck Relic is when you need another card.  And double Sigil Blessing on the splash is pretty awk.  Your druids also didn't have much to accelerate you into with the deck only having 3 fatties.

I think the deck's biggest issue is it did not have a strong late game fattie plan and it also did not have an agressive early game plan.  I find naya decks need one or the other unless they just have very strong cards (your r1 opponent).

Also I think p1p1 Ranger is fine though Magma Spray is probably the choice.  Ranger doesn't force you into bant as he is best in Naya with access to Nacatals and Squires.

by Anonymous(Unregistered) 75.161.245.163 (not verified) at Thu, 12/11/2008 - 06:51
Anonymous(Unregistered) 75.161.245.163's picture

Pick 4 of Pack 3 I definitely would have taken the Panorama over the Visionary.  I feel like mana consistency is very important in Shards drafts, as you're always in at least 3 colors, and the more fixing you can get via Panoramas and tri-lands, the better, because then it doesn't eat into your "real" card slots.  As a 1/1, the Visionary is basically only a cantrip anyway, so just about the same purpose is served by a Panorama anyway, in addition to fixing your mana.