Dec 9, 2012
Let me start this article with a huge thank you. My last article was placed on reddit by our fearless leader over here at 60cards, Chris Gravelle . With doing so, my article went from the usual 200+ hits to over 3000. To me that is just insane, and I’m happy to say it was mostly well received. 80% of readers liked the article according to reddit. So thank you all for liking the article, and for giving me a reason to keep writing these. It truly means a lot. Enough with the pleasantries, let’s get down to business.
State of the Meta: Since pie charts were well received last time, I’m running them back again. If you have a suggestion on something better/different let me know I’m open to suggestions. Let’s start with the 4-0 list again shall we:
Fairly clear who the winner is this week, eh? UR Post is a deck alright, often annoying to play against due to how long it takes to win, but it is very strong. You are going to need to be able to beat this to win some packs I’m afraid, so make sure your comfortable with that matchup. Your next deck to beat is Mono U Faeries. Not quite the showing it had last week, but still rather strong. Again, you will need to be able to tackle this deck to win anything, know the matchup before you start. The most confusing part of this chart to me is the shrinkage of storm getting the 4-0. I did call last article that I expected storms numbers to fall if Fae kept strong. Proof in the pudding? (What does that even mean anyways) moving on to the other decks you get some more of the regulars again. Delver, Mono Black, Mono Green, Mono Red, Infect, and White Weenie all tied storm for the 3rd place spot. Last place you get a tie between Temporal Fissure Storm, and Affinity. I’d like to say that I love that Affinity is back on the 4-0 list, and I’m super excited to see that Temporal Fissure appears to have just been a flash in the pan. At least I hope that is true, it does have a few 3-1′s
Well there goes any talk about Storm being dead. Where it suffered in the 4-0, it thrived here in the 3-1 bracket, proving that it’s still out there, just not closing out ALL of its games. You should have expected UR Post to be next here, given its showing in the winner circle; same should be said about Faeries. These continue to be the top 3 decks being played, nothing new here really. Mono Black almost doubled its numbers from last week, putting it on the rise for sure. Expect to see this deck as well, for better or worse. Aside from that, not too much has changed. Affinity falls into the category of what did change however. Its numbers have jump six fold. Not calling it a comeback yet, but there she is. Affinity does have a decent Fae matchup, and does well with post (most of the time). This could explain its current rise, maybe it’s just a fluke, but I’ll certainly be watching closely.
Deck of the week: UG Combo/Storm
You may have noticed the UG combo I listed in the pie chart above. Well here it is, in all its…glory? Maybe I’m just a cynic, but I don’t like Temporal Fissure that much. Though I will concede that this shell is much more appealing that the Esper version. Using land enchantments to make your combo work is much more appealing than creatures. Enchantment removal is almost nil in this format, I’m actually struggling to think of any that I have seen in these lists… The plan here is rather simple, combo using Ghostly Flicker to hit Cloud of Faeries, and Mnemonic Wall, or Archaeomancer. This allows you to “buy back” your Ghostly Flicker while untapping lands to be able to recast it. Rinse, repeat, storm. Whether it is Temporal Fissure, or your singleton Grapeshot, it’s pretty much a guaranteed win at this point. The rest of the deck is card drawing, and ways to stay alive. Oh, and value creatures like Mulldrifter, Sea Gate Oracle, and Ninja of the Deep Hours. Two of those make stellar flicker targets as well FYI. This deck hasn’t really knocked it out of the park yet so to speak, but I like what it’s doing. And I never promised you that I’d be giving you good decks in this portion of the article. Joking aside I think the deck is fine, I’m only missing a few cards here, so I’ll likely give it a whirl in the practice room, if for nothing else but to learn how to beat it better.
My week in Magic: since my last article I have played a decent amount of cards. I even managed to make it to my local shop to sling paper *gasp*. Let’s start with my first pauper daily of the week. I squeezed out a 3-1 piloting mono blue Fae. I bested not one, but two mirror matches, round one and two. Nothing much to say about the games, I flipped my Delvers early and countered their stuff. Round three however was a different story. I faced off against mono red. And (s)he drove me into the ground like a spike. I always figured I had a decent mono red matchup, and have beaten it before, but not here, it was a true beating. It was one of those matches that you never once feel like you are ahead, just always a turn or two behind. So I lost because of it… Round four I faced UB Post. Post is a pretty miserable matchup for Fae. And after losing game one I turned to my sideboard for some help.
Luckily for me I had a decent answer to his slow win condition. Curse of the Bloody Tome. What a card to bring in against him! He had literally zero ways to deal with it, aside a few Counterspells. I stuck two of them in game two to narrowly grab a win. Of course he had to mention “nice top deck” and “I would have won if you didn’t draw the second tome”. Well as obvious as that was, its basically the sentiment in all Magic games. It’s called variance, but I digress. Game three I kept on opener of Island, 2x Tome, Ponder, and the rest is irrelevant really. Long story short, I stuck one Tome turn 3, and the second turn 4. This guy was irate, it was almost amusing really. After enduring him calling me everything but “nice” I did manage to win. I added six packs to my collection.
Later in the week I 3-0′d a 4 pack sealed. Without going into detail, Teleportal is really good. With five packs to the positive, I promptly used three to bomb out of a draft in round one like a champ. I mentioned I played paper a bit earlier in article. Somehow I managed to make it to my LGS, despite agreeing to work early the following day. This just meant I couldn’t close ‘er down like I usually do. So in the interest of time, I hoped in a draft as soon as I got there. The deck I built was pretty a nasty GW populate deck, with 3 Common Bond. So naturally I face the Lotleth Troll/Pack Rat deck. And naturally I could have won, but decided to forget Lol Troll had regenerate. Rather than tilt, I casually signed up for the next draft. For those wondering the shop runs 8-4′s just like MTGO. This draft went better for me. Azorius is interesting to draft, especially when you get 2 Azorius Charm, 2 Dramatic Rescue, and a Cyclonic Rift. I handled my round one opponent pretty quickly, bouncing his guys and beating in the air. Round two I faced a tough opponent, but luckily he was Selesnya – tokens to boot. With all my bounce I was well positioned to win the game, but it was all but easy. As close as the games were, I did manage to best him in just two. So on to the finals. I usually don’t split finals unless it’s a good friend, but again, in the interest of time I offered a split. He took it, and I grabbed my 6 packs as I made my way out the door. Good thing I did too, getting up for work was a measly 5 hours away.
As successful as this week was for me card wise I expect a serious karma swing coming my way to knock me down a few pegs. I’m not that great of a player, and these results are likely skewed somehow, but I’ll take it when I can get it I suppose. Until next time goodbye and good luck.
@boostkilla on twitter, feel free to talk pauper with me there!