Let me tell you about my first, and probably only, tournament. It was held in a residence hall. It wasn't DCI sanctioned. I got ten packs of Legions for tying for first place, and I won it with a Sneak Attack deck. All of you hardcore gamers can leave now; it's just you and me.
I was most afraid of facing Psychatog, which could often draw out of the discard and use its counterspells to stop relevant threats until it could Shadow Rift, Corpse Dance, or Upheaval for the win. Sure enough, all four games I would lose on the day would be to Tog.
We discussed places to eat, and I had to throw several out the window, due to the fact that they didn't actually serve food. No one likes to hear that Taco Bell happily dispenses meat that is"lowest-grade edible" - but in a personal effort to get the world to eat better Mexican food, I drive this point home with a hammer.
The man plays goblins? Hell, the man IS a goblin! Mons"Goblin Raiders" Johnson is known for his deep love of Goblins - so much so that Richard Garfield named the first vanilla goblin in Alpha after him! And sure enough, he took his first (and only) Extended PTQ of the season with a rogue goblin deck that left out Mogg Fanatic, but left in... Goblin Recruiters?
I love this deck. Now, if I had only had the time to get the sideboard together in time, I would've been much happier.
As Dr. Ped told me in his e-mail, this deck is all about options. High Market and Phyrexian Tower mean that you can sacrifice creatures for life or mana. The Claws of Gix allow you to turn dying permanents - especially stolen permanents, into life. Stroke of Genius can go for two or three when you're desperate for cards, or six or seven when you have control and are looking for a win condition. In fact, he likes options so much, in his last article about the deck Dr. Ped suggested running two main deck copies of Cunning Wish.
Last year, my deck was Oath of Frogs. The deck functioned by using Hermit Druid to fill the graveyard, then using Oath of Ghouls to recur Spore Frog over and over... But the environment has sped up with the departure of Force of Will, and about half the cards left in the rotation. I rebuilt it, and here are the results of my testing and two tournaments that I attended.
On day two of Grand Prix: New Orleans, I did coverage here for StarCity, watching Zvi play his wacky creation to victories over Jeff Cunningham and Diego Ostrovich. All I can say was that I got hooked. I got to watch the master play it, and spent some time asking him about it... Now I was determined to play it. Fifty matches later and a PTQ under my belt, here's what I know.
Ted spies one of those Pizza By the Slice places. I figure it can't be any worse than McDonald's, so I shrug and we head in. As soon as the door opens and we step into the darkness, I realize things are not quite what I expected. To the left is a glass case filled with pig's knuckles, turkey necks, and other such delicacies. Everyone is drinking cans of beer - mostly Natural Light, a couple of Old English 800.
He won our New Orleans contest and we flew him down there... And by God, he's going to tell you what happened! Wanna hear about his unprecendented 4-1-1 run? How about the Osyp-and-Antonio show on Bourbon Street? His drinking escapades? How about how Ted Knutson showed his... Hell, you'll just have to read it.
I get fourth-turn and fifth-turn kills all the time (first-turn accelerator, second-turn Enchantress, third turn play a few things including a targetable creature, start drawing cards, fourth-turn Ancestral Mask, more enchantments). It's a lot of fun, and I've been playing this deck since 2000.
Using his own metagame data, Adam attended his first PTQ of the Extended season... And won it all. Time is slipping away - but thankfully, Adam's still compiling the best and most complete metagame and matchup data available anywhere on the web! Wanna see how each deck did in each matchup? Check it and see!
This is not an archetype to be glossed over. Extended is not nearly the insanely fast format we knew years ago. There is plenty of time for a lock-type deck to operate, and this one is incredibly powerful.
Hello, friends. I welcome those of you who have never read a column of mine before, and welcome back those of you who have. Before StarCity, I wrote for Neutral Ground - and before that, I wrote for The Dojo. So needless to say, I have a bit of Magic writing experience under my belt. And whenever I play in a tournament, I fit it into Backseat - my place to share my experiences with the world.
I have always held the position that a 6/6 token for 3G is something to be taken seriously, even more so when it flies. There is no question that for OBC, the Wurm token sat atop a very large pile of skulls, happy with the number of deaths it could claim. But that was Block Constructed, folks. This is Extended.
The deck is surprisingly good, better than I certainly expected. In our testing, it was no worse than 50/50 vs. Rock and U/G Madness, ate Sligh for lunch and gave Oath decks fits. This was before these improvements.
I had put together a synthesis of Rock and Oath I called"Black Oath" back in early December - and I think, in time, it would have become Kibler's build. That's sad. With that in mind, here are three decks that I've only done some light playtesting on, but I think they have potential.
At this point it was just after 6:00, my wife picked me up around 6:15 and we went and watched the Jazz crush the 76ers by 30 points. I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't have made the top 8 if I had stayed and played the last round, but I ended up at 15th place skipping the last round.
I've played the deck well over three hundred times now (which might still not be enough, since I still make mistakes - but I am not Bob Maher, so maybe I will always make mistakes) and here are the actual win-to-total ratios against fourteen decks you can expect to see in the metagame, along with copious notes on how to play it.