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By: dragonegg5, Scott Schauf
Sep 12 2007 9:25am
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Another day, another premier event. This time, I decided to rock the 10 Edition Sealed on

August 30, an OTJ Qualifier (1027421). I bought my packs and settled in for some magical

cards. I opened up a pretty good pool...and then completely messed it up. How, you ask,

could I mess up a pool with Sengir Vampire, Loxodon Warhammer, and Hurricane? Well, it

starts by building this abortion of a sealed deck:

2 Terramorphic Expanse
5 Mountain
6 Forest
3 Island

Mind Stone
Rage Weaver
Counsel of the Soratami
Goblin Elite Infantry
Arcane Teachings
Loxodon Warhammer
Bloodrock Cyclops
Bogardan Firefiend
Femeref Archers
Pincher Beetles
Prodigal Pyromancer
Rootwater Commando
Anaba Bodyguard
Elven Riders
Kavu Climber
Mantis Engine
Spined Wurm

Here is the rest of my pool, for reference.

Holy Day
High Ground
Rule of Law
Heart of Light
Holy Strength
Angelic Wall
Wild Griffin
2 Benalish Knight
Ghost Warden
Tundra Wolves

2 Fugitive Wizard
Sea Monster
Horseshoe Crab
Counsel of the Soratami
Aven Windreader
Cloud Sprite

Mind Rot
Looming Shade
Festering Goblin
Unholy Strength
Thrull Surgeon
Sengir Vampire
Scathe Zombies
Dusk Imp

Fists of the Anvil
Goblin Elite Infantry
Squee, Goblin Nabob

Natural Spring
Giant Growth
Wall of Wood

Fountain of Youth

So, quite clearly I have misbuilt. The thing is, I had a really hard time finding a build that

had enough creatures. I still haven't found such a build, but I did come up with a few

builds that aren't quite as awful as this first deck, as you will read.

Round 1 VS pokerswizard
So we're off. My opener for the first game is pretty good, and I start with Goblin Elite

Infantry. My opponent Overgrowths his land and passes. I suit up my Goblin with Arcane

Teachings and bash. He answers with Scalpelexis, which I Persuasion right away.

Those guys go the distance, and I see his deck contains both Mobilization and Overrun.

Game two begins, and he comes right out of the gates. I mulligan into a two land hand,

and miss my third drop. He plays some men. I get a land on turn 4, play it and Bloodrock

Cyclops. His guys, however, are just bigger, and after casting a few draw spells and

getting tempo with Boomerang, he puts me out of my misery with Overrun.

So we move to game three. I'm on the play this time, and I'm feeling pretty good. I mulligan

this hand:

Expanse, Island, Shock, Mantis Engine, Elven Riders, Mind Stone, Spined Wurm

and my six aren't a whole lot better. I have three lands and Mind Stone, but only one guy I

can cast. He has a Spiketail Hatchling, with is fine since I accelerated past it with Mind

Stone. Then he plays Virdian Shaman and puts me under his Spiketail. My fourth land

was a Terramorphic Expanse, so I missed playing another guy. We hit each other back

and forth for a few turns, with him gaining a lot of tempo using Remove Soul and

Boomerang. I'm holding Evacuation to get some tempo back, but I never see the second

blue source.
1-2, 0-1

Round 2 VS Lapson2
What an interesting round this was. The first game is the exception however. I drew

Warhammer, so I won. Whee that card is balanced!

Game two saw me bashing him low early. He began to stabilize with The Hive, and when

I was dead on his next turn, I had no choice but to draw the game with Hurricane.

Game three looks about even. I have a Sea Monster of his thanks to the power of

Persuasion, but when I attack into him, we completely wrecks me with Aura Graft. I lose

shortly after.

Game 4, and I decided I was tired of playing my original mismash of UGR spells with not

enough lands, so I built up a quick BW aggro build that splash blue for my card-drawing

and beat him down quickly.
2-1-1, 1-1

I'm now completely positive I built wrong. I'll start playing with alternate builds in my

postboard games and see what I can come up with.

Round 3 VS Phague
Game one is the normal affair with my original deck. My cards are just not strong enough

and this build is too inconsistent. I lose in short order.

Game two I build a UBr list, complete with Horseshoe Crab/Arcane Teachings. I get him

this game with that very combo.

Game three seems me draw Warhammer again. That means I am good at magic.

I think I'm on to something with this build. It seems to be a lot more consistent, and my

cards are just stronger. I'm still very creature-light, but I really can't find a strong

combination that allows me to play a bunch of men, so I'm stuck with what I have.
2-1, 2-1

Decklist for UBr Goes Here:
ALL BLUE EXCEPT 2x wizard, twitch, telep
ALL BLACK except deathmark, mind rot, unholy
-mind stone for 17th land
2 mountain, 7 island, 6 swamp

Round 4 VS Lashof
Game one was really close. I bashed him early, then he locked the board up with him on

six life. I figured my only out at this point was Hurricane, and my life was falling fairly

quickly, so I needed to find it quickly. So, I played Smash targetting Loxodon Warhammer.

Seems good, right? Well, it was my hammer. Luckily, I found Hurricane, so we were off

to game two.

I again sided into my UBr list, and bashed him quickly. He managed to Sculpting Steel my

Warhammer this game, but he was creature-light and color screwed, so I won without

too much trouble.
2-0, 3-1

At this point, I have to go to work, so unfortunately I have to drop.

And I'm out. This pool was tough to build, in my eyes. Even the build I eventually settled

upon (the UBr) had too few creatures. Even with the bombs that I opened, I knew

eventually the lack of playable guys was going to catch up to me. Though I build wrong,

my first build had enough powerful cards that I could squeak out a win in game one every

once in a while. Overall, this was a good learning experience, and even though I lost, I

still felt like I learned enough that it was worth the time and money.

I've got one draft to write up (5th pick Tromp!?) and then it'll be OTJ Labor Day weekend

reports. I'm not sure what events I'm playing in just yet, but we'll see what looks good

when the time comes.

Thanks for reading!

-Scott Schauf
Four to the Facehole on MODO
Dragonegg5 on AIM


sealed pool by Ben (Unregistered) (not verified) at Wed, 09/12/2007 - 14:02
Ben (Unregistered)'s picture

When you are building a sealed pool with three colors and the means to play them, your splash color should ideally be one that is very splashable.  If you are laden with bombs, your ideal should be to play cards that trade early to allow you to play those bombs.

Start with the artifacts always as they are the easist includes and sometimes point the way for later selections.  Mind Stone, Mantis, and Warhammer range from solid to backbreaking. (3 cards)  Your lands will make you tend to want to run 18 (Expanses when activated reduce the lands you can draw early) considering you are three colors with a sizeable mana curve on your best cards.  17 may be ok.  16 is asking for problems.

Blue is the deepest color: it has Persuasion and three good card drawing spells with some good defensive cards to make sure your bombs come online.  You have to consider it the #1 main color.  In goes: Persuasion, Sift, 2x Counsel, Evacuation, Aven Windreader, Puppeteer, and possibly Sea Monster or Rootwater.  I consider Crab to be pretty junky, but Crab + Teachings is nasty and Crab + Warhammer is solid enough, so maybe Crab too. (8-9 cards)

Green provides your solid beef: Spined Wurm, Kavu Climber, Elven Riders are very solid, but operate at 5 mana.  Rootwalla definitely makes it, as do probably Pincers and Archers.  Normally I would strongly consider Giant Growth and Naturalize too (but Naturalize less so in your deck given your strong threat ratio).  Hurricane perhaps too, but remember your curve is slow and Hurricane is not the best come-from-behind card. I don't like how the curve looks like when your average card-drawing spell costs more than your average creature, so there is a chance another color fits your needs better.

Red has three good removal cards that only need one mana, a decent catch-all in Squee which may or not make the final cut, and nothing else exciting, though there are some other playables.  But those playables are not for splashes. (Shock, Pyromancer, Teachings, and maybe Squee only.)

Black is basically the pits for creature quality.  Sengir yes, everything else will get beat up.  Sengir is double-black though so you probably have to pass completely.  It offers some splash options (Deathmark is usually startable, Terror, and Afflict) if you want to get really spicy, but that should be desperate.  The Red splash is objectively stronger, but Black may be better if facing an inordinate amount of removal or fatties from the opponent.

What about White?  Pacifism and Condemn are on par with the other splashes.  Benalish Knight x2, Ghost Warden, and Wild Griffin are solid cards that make up the backbone of successful decks for the bottom portion of the curve, but it peters out after that.  Angelic Wall or Heart of Light (better here given your curve, draw, and bombs that can ignore it) aren't horrible, but you hope you don't have to play it.

Basically, you have Blue for sure, Red as a probable splash, and then a choice between a higher curve of Green fat or good White early drops.  Green is riskier, but playing White may be the only way to survive.  I'd probably opt for the latter.  Here goes:

Warhammer, Mind Stone, Mantis, Persuasion, Sift, 2x Counsel, Evacuation, Aven Windreader, Puppeteer, Sea Monster, Crab, Pacifism, Condemn, Benalish Knight x2, Ghost Warden, Wild Griffin, Heart of Light, Shock, Arcane Teachings, Pyromancer, and either Smash/Squee/Angelic Wall/Commando or 18th land as my 23rd card (I lean towards Smash or land myself).  This deck has lots of possibilities for sideboarding: + green for better aerial defense, +red for artifact removal, + green for slower decks where you can upgrade the small white dorks to green fatties, and maybe a +black - red switch for the removal decks when 2 of your red spells become bad.

Just some thoughts.

deleted comments by mtgotraders at Wed, 09/12/2007 - 15:52
mtgotraders's picture

Normally I don't delete comments but I felt it was needed and I asked JX to remove all content from the article that was questionable.  This will not happen again and I apologize.

by khirareq at Wed, 09/12/2007 - 16:00
khirareq's picture

Completely understand your reasoning and agree with your decision.  For whatever that's worth.

I'd probably have gone with UGR, ability to sideboard into UGB.