From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.
Magic: Origins is certainly more popular than Dragons of Tarkir in my local store. For my second draft in a row there have been two tables, where previously we sometimes struggled to fill even on table. It may not always be this way, but I’ll enjoy it while it lasts.
In this draft I’ve moved along the learning curve somewhat, but so has everyone else. This draft was one of struggling to find open colours before realising I would be in the same colours as last time.
Pack 1, pick 1: Kytheon, Hero of Akros
It was a beautiful dream, but was not to be. After a first pick planeswalker, the player to my right cut white hard. I didn’t see anything more exciting than Yoked Ox in pack 1, so I took that signal and moved away.
The deck: blue/green
This deck had a lot more shape than my previous attempt at this combo. With double Claustrophobia, and a decent number of creatures I felt good about the result of a draft where I had started in White, tried a couple of Red picks, and then finished in blue/green.
The result: 2-1
My first match was against the player who had been sitting to my right. As expected he had a heavy white deck with a small red presence. In fact his red was more significant than I realised, but my opponent did not get more than one Mountain in either of our matches.
His early Renown creatures were effectively blanked by Maritime Guard and Watercourser. Once I’d stabilised the ground I was able to gain position with Separatist Voidmage and Claustrophobia before closing out the game. This happened in two short games to give my a solid victory to start the draft.
Match 2 was against a white/green deck. This was a more solid deck but again the balance of fortune went in my direction. In game 1, we both topped out at four lands. I had the beatdown advantage and took my opponent down to 7 before he stabilised and began threatening my life total. I had Alhammarret on board and my opponent had no flying blockers. My only issue was I would die if I couldn’t hit my opponent for 7 that turn. “There’s one card here that will save me” I said as I drew my card for the turn. It was Throwing Knife. Luck.
The next game it was Sword of the Animist‘s time to shine. Equipped to Undercity Troll, I drew 14 of my 18 lands over the game, which I won. When you have that much mana it doesn’t really matter what you draw, though I managed to draw four land in a row while using the sword!
With a pair of 2-0 results, it was on to the finals.
My final opponent had a green/red deck made up of some fairly unspectacular cards. Cobblebrute. Reclaim. Chandra’s Fury. Last half of the pack kind of cards.
Game 1 I got stuck on land, land, land. Sword of the Animist on Undercity Troll was again a thing, but when the Sword was destroyed by Conclave Naturalists I drew more land before dying. The second game lasted longer, but ended much the same. After a long land run I simply died due to not having enough on the board to keep back the likes of Cobblebrute. Seeing zero Claustrophobia and zero Separatist Voidmage was not helping any. Still, I’d had my share of luck in the first two matches, seeing things swing the other way was not exactly surprising.
Best cards: Sword of the Animist, Undercity Troll, Separatist Voidmage.
All these cards performed well each and every time I cast them.
Signals are a thing. Not getting tied to Gideon in pack 1 was good. Talking about and noticing signals are one thing; putting that into practise is another. I’m not at the level yet where I can do this without really thinking about it, so I felt it was good to recognise what I managed to do.
Maritime Guard is better than you think. It’s unlikely to swing for the win, but that is not its role. As a two-mana 1/3 creature, this happy little merfolk will blank any two-drop Renown creature your opponent cares to play, and many of the three drops too. It definitely has a role in this format. I never lost a game in which my opponent spent removal to get Maritime Guard out of the way of his Renown creatures.
The deck: sorted by converted mana cost (CMC) with lands last
CMC 2: Leaf Gilder, Maritime Guard, Stratus Walk, Sword of the Animist, Throwing Knife, 2x Timberpack Wolf, Undercity Troll
CMC 3: Bounding Krasis, 2x Claustrophobia, Scrapskin Dake, 2x Watercourser
CMC 4: Pharika’s Disciple, 2x Separatist Voidmage
CMC 5: Conclave Naturalists, Ringwarden Owl
CMC 6: Skaab Goliath, Vastwood Gorger
CMC 7: Alhammarret, High Arbiter
lands: 9 Island, 7 Forest, 2 Evolving Wilds