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By: JXClaytor, Joshua Claytor
Jan 11 2008 1:07pm
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Hello and welcome to another edition of Community Profiles.  This week's profile comes to you via an Extended Premiere Event were a player with a very rogue and unique deck found himself in the top eight. I hope you enjoy this look at a player who thinks a little bit outside of the standard box.  

Thirty three year old Jesse Caloca is not your typical Magic: the Gathering player.  When the game you play has a target demographic of those much younger, say, sixteen to twenty four years old, thirty three year old gamers kind of stick out.  Of course typical is not really a good way to describe Jesse. 

The Las Vegas, Nevada resident is a professional poker player when he goes to work.  When he is off, he fires up the good old MTGO and blows off some steam.  Jesse is not affiliated with any clan on the program. 

Jesse just goes to show that sometimes you do not need to be a member of a giant tech sharing clan in order to be successful in the world of Magic.  Sometimes it is really nice to remember that Magic is just a game or a hobby to some people. 

Jesse does not really have many accomplishments in Magic.  He played Type One when he was in college and that is his favorite format.  Keeping with that, his favorite card is Ancestral Recall and his favorite seta is Alpha. 

While interviewing Jesse, I asked him about the decklist that he played, and while he was not willing to share all the cards in his list (Gotta keep some of that tech bottled up right!)  he did share a few.  While watching replays of the deck in action it reminded me of a popular French deck that took the Standard scene by storm a few years ago after the countries Regional championships.  Let's take a look at those cards now. 

4 Wee Dragonauts
4 Brute Force
2 Grim Lavamancer
4 Izzet Guildmage
4 Lava Dart
4 Lava Spike
4 Serum Visions
4 Reckless Charge

4 Shock
2 Flametongue Kavu
4 Steam Vents
Various Onslaught "Fetch" Lands
Various Basic lands

That is thirty eight cards that Jesse gave us definite numbers for.  I'd be willing to guess that Glectrode also made the cut in the main deck, and I bet some more burn did as well.  Maybe some card draw and Ritual effects so Mentat010 could get infinite mana (Remember the Desperate Ritual/Lava Spike Izzet Guildmage combo?  You'd Splice Ritual into Spike than use the Guildmage and continue until you had as much mana as you wanted? 


Jesse, who created this deck had this to say about the name of it, which he has named Crunch Berries, which I can assume to be a tribute of sorts to the old school Extended format, where just about every combo deck had a breakfast cereal name.  Necro Donate was Cocoa Peebles, The infinite life combo with en-Kor critters was aptly named life, and before casting Enduring Ideal was a hip thing to do, Enduring Renewal was the back bone of Fruity Peebles.  There you go, you read an interview, and get a little history about magic as well. 


Let's start up with the interview. 
Joshua Claytor(JC):  Why did you play this deck in the event? 
Jesse Caloca (M1):  I enjoy designing decks and the watching people duplicate them over time.  If I took Magic tournaments as seriously as I take Texas-holdem tourneys, I would have a lot of success.  The environment is too dynamic and unstable for me to really care.  So I hope someone runs with this idea.  It's fast and vicious.  Turn four victories are common enough.

JC:  What are the decks good matchups? 

M1:  (Well...) if the flyer Wee Dragonauts
gets through and the opponent is tapped out, it matches well with any deck.
JC:  What are it's poor matchups in events?
M1:  Land destruction, creature kill.  But you can sideboard in other creatures or counters (that should help some of the bad matchups.) 

Any advice for magic online players?
M1:  Play drafts to boost your collection then trade for deckworthy cards

JC:  Anything else you would like to add?
M1:  I have many solid themes for Extended and Classic. The closer mtgo can get to Type One online, the happier I'll be. Until you have experienced  Zuran Orb, Fastbond, and Yawgmoth's Bargain in play on turn one,  (I feel like...)You really haven't experienced Magic the Gathering at it's highest level.  For example, your first seven cards may consist of something like this.

1. Black Lotus
2. Mox Emerald
3. Swamp
4. Dark Ritual
5. Fastbond
6. Yawgmoth's Bargain
7. Zuran Orb 

Depending on what's in your deck, this is a guaranteed first turn kill, but you have to understand EXACTLY what is in your deck and EXACTLY what everything in your deck does.  You also have to plan out how you are going to kill your opponent on turn one which usually takes at least nine to ten spells.  But just like running the table in pool, it's no fun when you are the victim.

That will bring this issue of Community Profile to a close.  I do want to thank Jesse for his help in the interview, and wish him the best of luck in all of his future events.  Good luck bluffing that 2-7 off suit in your next Hold 'em tournament! 


38 cards? by Anonymous (Unregistered) (not verified) at Sat, 01/12/2008 - 05:45
Anonymous (Unregistered)'s picture

 You might want to reconsider the math in this article.

You say those are 38 cards, but it lists  40, but it includes 4 lands.

that's 36 spells, I dont think he has much space left for more burn or card draw and gelectrodes and rituals as you suggested.

  For example, your first seven cards may consist of something like this.

1. Black Lotus
2. Mox Emerald
3. Swamp
4. Dark Ritual
5. Fastbond
6. Yawgmoth's Bargain
7. Zuran Orb

doesnt you hand have to be precisly those cards? You could swamp emerald for jet and swamp for forest, but other than that, not much room for alterations.

I really dont get why such a hand is fun anyway, but that's just me.


Thanks for the Article 



by JXClaytor at Fri, 01/11/2008 - 15:15
JXClaytor's picture

Yeah I thought I had implied Lava Spike when I used the combo, I will go in and make that a little more clear.  Thank you. 

by _Shaddai_ (not verified) at Fri, 01/11/2008 - 15:03
_Shaddai_'s picture

Kinda cool seeing a rogue deck make top 8 every now and then. Creativity is a good thing. Just want to clarify though on your statement about izzet guildmage combo. It requires BLUE mana to copy instants, therefore you can only gather mana for as much "BLUE" as you can spend. The combo I think you are referring to is the Lavaspike Spliced with Desperate Ritual combo that deals infinite damage as everytime the lavaspike resolves you get your RRR back to recopy the spell.

All in all, I enjoy reading your extended articles as I myself play in ext tournaments every now and then. I like to see what's been winning and what not. Lately though, been sticking to just the 8 mans though.

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