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We had another casual draft at Mind Games in Burnaby. There were 7 of us, including 4 newer players. They were teens, and this was their first ever draft. They knew generally how to play the game, but we had to walk them through a bit of the process of drafting and deckbuilding. My first pick was a Kaya's Wrath (nice!). I took Sharktocrab with my second pick, and I wanted to stay a bit open. With newer drafters, I wasn't sure if signals might be messed up. I did waffle a bit (my bad habit), though I did pick more Simic/blue than Orzhov cards in Pack 1. My opponent on the left accidentally revealed his first pack as the Sunder Shaman, as he didn't know he was supposed to hide his picks. I guess I know what direction he wants. After a few bumps and misordered packs (nothing major), we got things worked out. Pack 2, my first pick was Kaya, herself... *urk*. Should I abandon Simic and switch to Orzhov? I was not seeing much good Orzhov in Pack 1. I picked her for value, but was second-guessing myself. I must have saw something good for Simic in pack 2, because I pretty much abandoned Orzhov soon after that, and ended up with a low-curve tempo deck with lots of tricks. Oh, pack 3's rare was Hallowed Fountain. Took for value Round 1 - Played one of the new kids. He had a Gruul deck, and actually drafted quite well for his first time. He picked on-colour cards, had a good mix of spells, and stayed focus. I did beat him 2-0, in part because his deck was a bit sub-optimal, although he had me down to 2 life in Game 1. After the round, I helped him re-build his deck a bit (he had too many spells, not enough creatures, and didn't include one of his better tricks). He seemed to be better off afterwards. Round 2 - Played against an experienced player with an Orzhovy-Esper control deck. He had the stupid mythic that made illusion blockers, which made it hard for me to get damage through on the ground. I won game 1 thanks to having 2 bounce spells to swing for lethal. He won game 2 because of his removal. Yeah, his deck was like half-removal... we ended up drawing because he kept killing my threats and he couldn't push through enough damage after I countered his mythic Benthic illusion thingy (can't recall the name). I sided in Eyes Everywhere for a slow matchup. Round 3 - Played the other experienced player who had a Simic deck, too. His splashed white and had a multi-colour theme. With the Guildpact artifact, he was drawing a LOT of cards off of his multicoloured spells. He also had 3(!) Pteromanders... I took game 1 thanks to the most aggressive curve my deck could draw into (even after a mull). Game 2 was a loooong affair, and he drew most of his deck. I somehow managed to slog through and wait out his Mystic (since I could play at instant speed a lot). Eventually, my adapters got bigger and just wore out his army. Final Result: 2-0-1. A very casual draft with newer players, so this isn't for bragging rights so much as relaxing and enjoying the draft format. Again, I keep ending up in blue
I got a chance to do my first paper draft of a competitive format in many months (Unstable being my last, if you call that competitive), as I drafted Guilds of Ravnica this past Friday. As you can see, I ended up with a very low-cost Dimir deck that was thick on control and thin on beefy win conditions. RECORD: 2-0-1 (amazingly…) DRAFT – My first pick was the Price of Fame over the rare blue copy spell. I figured I wanted to be Dimir or Golgari and hard removal is a good first pick. It was obvious that black was wide open at the table (other people were publicly commenting. This was a laid back draft with talking), so I made the right choice. Given how many Dimir cards I saw going around, it was easy to slide into that seat and I really didn’t budge from that, apart from a spec on a white card early on. I also figured I might have put the drafter to my left on blue with passing the rare, so I might get cut on that colour in pack 2. What I wasn’t seeing was any real beef. I didn’t get the 5-mana 3/4 flyer, nor did I see much for big black dudes. I was glad to see the surveil pay-offs, at least, and THREE(!) artful takedown, but very worried because… well, less beef than a vegan restaurant. My second pack had a Temple Garden (took for $), and Pack 3 was the rare blue copy spell (I honestly don’t know what I took over it, but it wouldn’t have been great for my deck, I think). I don't know if I made any big mistakes, and drafted my seat well, but I am sure there were 1-2 picks I missed that could have made the deck have more oomph. The deck was mainly banking hard on the Snitch (bleeder), Sprites (Flyers), and Spybug (Evasion). It took a lot of mental energy and each match was grindy. MATCHES Round 1 – I played against the guy on my left I was passing to. He ended up doing Jeskai with a weird blend of spells and mentor. He smoked me in game 1 by curving out and focusing on mentor. Games 2 and 3, his mana base bit him a bit and he durdled a bit much. The lack of deck focus allowed me to use my removal effectively and bleed him out. I actually won in turn 5 of extra turns. I was the one guy making the draft run long Round 2 – I played against a lady playing Grixis spells. It was a really cool deck that had the big 0/8 cyclops and a lot of jump-start spells and removal. I somehow was able to pull out a game 1 win by bleeding and attacking for 1 like 10 turns in a row. The 1/3 that makes dudes unblockable was big game, and she knew she screwed up by not killing it and killing the surveil bleeder, instead. She won game 2 easily, and then we drew in extra turns. I honestly think she had Game 3 easily, and considered giving her the match win, but I guess I wanted to end up .500, so I didn’t quite do it. Round 3 – I played the Dimirror match. Opponent had the bigger spells and flyers, but didn’t have quite as much removal and none of the surveil payoffs. I guess I ended up cutting him off of the stuff he wanted, so I managed to take this match 2-0 as I could remove his beefier stuff and bleed him out.
With prerelease weekend upon us, is anybody else here going to the Guilds of Ravnica events this weekend? If so, what guild(s) do you want to play? @Aurian and I plan to go to the Saturday prerelease. I chose Golgari, since I love using the graveyard to recycle, and it’s my second-fave guild after Orzhov. @Aurian is going Dimir, since she likes blue and even though she likes Izzet more, the Surveil mechanic and Dimir cards seem much more interesting.
Lasraik posted a topic in MTG DiscussionThere is a rumor on 4chan that after Innistrad we'll have an Egyptian themed set, then be going back to Ravnica. Again. It's 4chan so take it with a grain of salt but lets speculate anyway I think it was Rosewater who announced that after innistrad we will be returning to another place from the past. I didn't think it would be Ravnica again, though. The Egyptian theme sounds interesting.