Semifinals: Reid Duke vs. Chris Andersen
Both players grinded their ways through the quarterfinals. Who will make it to the Finals to play for the Invitational crown: Windswept+Heath and Chris with a Forest. On turn 2, Reid cracks his fetch for a Forest, plays a Yavimaya+Coast, followed by a Sylvan+Caryatid. Not to be outdone, Chris plays a Plains and a Sylvan+Caryatid of his own.
Reid then plays a Satyr+Wayfinder, taking a Temple+of+Malady and playing it scry. He leaves on top and follows up with a Thoughtseize on Chris. Chris places his hand down to show Genesis+Hydra, Mastery+of+the+Unseen, Voyaging+Satyr, Windswept+Heath, and Polukranos%2C+World+Eater. After a bit of thought, Reid seizes the Genesis+Hydra from Chris’ hand, and passes the turn back.
Chris draws for the turn, and plays a freshly drawn Courser+of+Kruphix. The Courser reveals an Elvish+Mystic on top of his library, and Chris plays a Windswept+Heath and passes the turn back. For his turn, Reid taps out to play a Sidisi, Blood+Tyrant, milling three cards off the top of his library, including an Sylvan+Caryatid, making a 2/2 Zombie. With that, Reid passes the turn.
Chris draws his card and reveals a Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx on top of his library. Playing the Nykthos off the top, thanks to Courser+of+Kruphix, Chris cracks his fetch for a Forest, and then reveals Dromoka’s Command on the top of his library. He then plays both his Voyaging+Satyr and Mastery+of+the+Unseen, setting up for more explosive turns in the later game. With all that, Chris finally passes his turn.
On Reid’s turn, he starts with an attack by Sidisi, milling himself again to create a Zombie. Chris blocks with his Courser and the creatures bounce off each other. Reid follows this up by casting a Satyr+Wayfinder, milling himself even more, and also creating a third 2/2 Zombie. After some though, Reid says “go” to Chris.
Chris starts off by playing his Polukranos%2C+World+Eater, then casts Dromoka’s Command, choosing to give his Courser+of+Kruphix a +1/+1 counter and have it fight Reid’s Sidisi%2C+Brood+Tyrant. After killing off Reid’s Sidisi, Chris tanks for a bit, but decides to pass the turn instead.
Reid cracks a Polluted+Delta on his turn, to fetch a Swamp, and follows that up by casting another Sidisi%2C+Brood+Tyrant. While Sidisi’s trigger is on the stack, Chris activates his Nykthos to make the mana to have his freshly played Polukranos fight the new Sidisi. However, in response to that, Reid delves away three cards and Murderous+Cuts the Polukranos before the fight can happen. After all the interaction, Sidisi does mill away three cards for Reid, and creates another Zombie. Reid attacks into Chris’ army of mana creatures with his army of Zombies, and then passes the turn.
Chris is hoping to draw something big, which his deck could easily allow him to do, but instead Chris just draws his card for the turn, plays a land of the top of his deck, and reveals his card to Courser. Afterwards, Chris passes the turn back to Reid. Reid also just draws his card and says “go”, but at his end step, Chris activates his Nykthos. After trying to untap the Nykthos with Voyaging+Satyr, Reid responds by Murderous Cutting Chris’ Courser+of+Kruphix. Undettered, Chris continues to manifest creatures, making two Manifest tokens at the end of Reid’s turn.
On Chris’ turn, he decides to play an Elvish+Mystic, and then start making Manifest tokens. In total, Chris makes four additional Manifest tokens, bringing his total to six, overall. After tapping out to make several 2/2 Manifests, Chris passes the turn back to Reid.
Reid draws his card for his turn, and swings into Chris with Sidisi and three Zombie tokens. Chris puts several Manifests in front of each creature, killing Reid’s Sidisi and two of the three Zombies. After combat, Reid casts a Reclamation+Sage, destroying Chris’ Mastery+of+the+Unseen, in hopes of putting an end to Chris’ manifesting days.
However, Chris draws his card and immediately puts a replacement Mastery+of+the+Unseen into play. With that, Chris starts flipping over his previous manifests, revealing a Courser+of+Kruphix and Sylvan+Caryatid. He then creates another Manifest token, and passes the turn. Reid can only draw his card for the turn and play a land and then pass the turn into Chris’ army of mana creatures, Manifests, and seemingly infinite mana.
Chris starts his turn by drawing a card and then Manifesting and flipping two Whisperwood+Elementals. After gaining over 20 life, he decides to cast a 12/12 Genesis+Hydra, which places a Polukranos%2C+World+Eater into play. During his end step, the Whisperwood+Elementals create two more Manifest tokens, and Chris passes back to Reid.
Reid attacks with his Reclamation+Sage, which Chris quickly blocks with one of his many Coursers of Kruphix. Reid then concedes the game to Chris’ massive board.
Chris wins Game 1, and is currently up 1-0.
After sideboard, Reid chooses to play first and keeps his opening seven this time. Chris joins Reid in keeping his opening seven, and we start with Reid playing a first turn Temple+of+Malady, scrying to the bottom, and passing the turn. Chris leads with just a Forest and a pass.
Reid plays a Forest, followed by a Sylvan+Caryatid. Chris also plays a two-drop, fetching for a Plains and casting the powerful enchantment, Mastery+of+the+Unseen. It seems that both players are preparing for the long haul.
Reid Thoughtseizes Chris, who has a bit of sly grin, as he lays down his hand with no third land drop. Reid contemplates for a moment and takes one of Chris’ two Courser+of+Kruphix. Reid then Thoughtseizes the other Courser out of Chris’ hand, plays a Satyr+Wayfinder, finding a Temple+of+Malady, and passes the turn. All Chris can do is play an Elvish+Mystic for his turn, missing his third land drop.
Reid presses his advantage by playing a Sidisi%2C+Undead+Vizier, exploiting his Satyr+Wayfinder, in order to search up any card in his deck. On Chris’ turn, Chris manages to find a land and cast a Deathmist+Raptor, in hopes of getting some kind of defense.
However, Reid had searched up Dragonlord Slumgar with his Sidisi, and he cast it this turn, gaining control of Chris’ Deathmist+Raptor, and attacking with Sidisi%2C+Undead+Vizier, continuing to push his advantage. He then passed the turn to Chris.
On Chris’ turn, he played Whisperwood+Elemental that created another blocker as a Manifest token. Reid seemed undettered, and attacked with this Dragonlord Slumgar, Sidisi%2C+Undead+Vizier, and Chris’ own Deathmist+Raptor. After a bit of thought, Chris blocked the Deathmist+Raptor with his Whisperwood+Elemental, putting both into his graveyard. Reid, content to attack with Dragons of Tarkir Legends, passed the turn back to Chris.
Chris draw for his turn and attempted to cast Nissa%2C+Worldwaker, but Reid had a Disdainful+Stroke at the ready. Chris scooped up all his permanents, conceding to Reid’s counterspell.
Reid wins Game 2, and the match is tied, 1-1.
Reid plays a Satyr+Wayfinder for his turn, milling away a Thoughtseize, a Hero’s Downfall, and a Opulent+Palace, but keeps a Llanowar+Wastes. With that, he passes back to Chris.
Chris ups the aggression this turn as he casts a second Elvish+Mystic and a Fleecemane+Lion. However, Reid blunts that aggression by casting a Thoughtseize for his turn, taking Chris’ Genesis+Hydra, and then Delving away several cards in his graveyard to Murderous+Cut the Fleecemane+Lion.
Chris plays a Deathmist+Raptor for his turn and a Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx, in hopes of generating enough devotion in the later game to use the powerful land. But all he can do is pass turn to Reid, who has taken away much of Chris’ resources for this game.
Reid draws for the turn and plays a Temple+of+Malady, keeps his card on top, and then passes the turn. Hoping to get some aggression going (as Reid has been killing himself slowly with all of his painlands), Chris attacks with both Elvish+Mystics and his Deathmist+Raptor. Reid blocks one of the Elves with his Satyr+Wayfinder and then Sultai+Charms the Deathmist+Raptor, choosing to destroy target mono-colored creature. All Chris can do for his turn is draw and say “go.”
Reid follows this up with casting a Torrent+Elemental, looking to start putting Chris away. Chris draws a Voyaging+Satyr for his turn, lamenting how many mana creatures are in his deck.
For his turn, Reid starts with a Thoughtseize. Chris responds by playing a Dromoka’s Command, giving his Elvish+Mystic a +1/+1 counter and having Reid sacrifice an enchantment, none of which he has. However, after playing the Thoughtseize, Reid plays a Whip+of+Erebos and attacks with his Torrent+Elemental, tapping all of Chris’ team and gaining three life. Chris seems like he might be on the ropes.
However, Chris’ draw for the turn brings good news, as he plays a freshly drawn Whisperwood+Elemental. The Elemental creates a Manifest token, and it is now Reid’s turn.
Reid attacks with Torrent+Elemental and Satyr+Wayfinder for his turn, but before blockers and after Torrent Elemental’s “tap all creatures defending player controls” trigger resolves, Chris flips over the manifest that Whisperwood+Elemental made, revealing a Voyaging+Satyr. This brings back the Deathmist+Raptor from Chris’ graveyard, which he uses to block Reid’s attacking Wayfinder. Reid plays a land for his turn, after combat, followed by a Reclamation+Sage that does not have a target, and passes the turn.
On Chris’ turn, he decides it is time to race. He attacks with the whole team, bringing Reid’s life total down to five. Chris plays a land and passes the turn. Reid attacks back with his Torrent+Elemental, Reclamation+Sage, and a whipped back Satyr+Wayfinder, gaining some life and a land in the process. However, Reid can only play a land and say “go” to Chris.
Chris draws for his turn and starts doing Nykthos mana math. After activating Nykthos three times (thanks to two Voyaging+Satyrs), he uses 13 of his 23 green mana to cast a Genesis+Hydra for 11, finding a Mastery+of+the+Unseen in the process. With his remaining 10 mana, he creates three manifest tokens, hoping to find a creature to flip up and gain life. On his third attempt, Chris nods, as he manifests a Courser+of+Kruphix off the top of his library and immediately flips it up, gaining 12 life. Chris enters combat, attacking with his Whisperwood+Elementals, and putting Reid to two life. With that big turn, Chris passes the turn back to Reid.
On Reid’s next turn, he plays a Doomwake+Giant, giving all of Chris’ creatures -1/-1. He then goes to one life off a fetch land in order to activate Whip+of+Erebos and bring back from the dead a Courser+of+Kruphix, triggering the new Doomwake Giant’s ability, and giving Chris’ creatures another -1/-1. In response, Chris sacrifices his Whisperwood+Elemental. Chris loses four Manifest tokens, two Voyaging+Satyrs, and an Elvish+Mystic, but gets three new Manifest tokens thanks to the Whisperwood Elemental’s sacrifice ability. Reid then plays the land off the top of his library, thanks to the Whipped back Courser+of+Kruphix, going to two life, followed by an attack with the Torrent+Elemental, Courser+of+Kruphix, and Reclamation+Sage. With that, Reid passes the turn, both players sitting at nine life.
Chris starts his turn off by playing a land and making another Manifest creature, which he flips over to reveal as a Whisperwood+Elemental. This gains him nine more life. He then goes to combat and attacks with his 11/11 Genesis+Hydra, Deathmist+Raptor, and all three Manifest tokens. Reid blocks the huge Hydra with a Sylvan+Caryatid and a Manifest token with his Doomwake+Giant. At the end of his turn, Chris triggers his Whisperwood+Elemental, making another Manifest creature. With that he passes the turn back to Reid.
Reid can only play a land and pass the turn, but Chris continues to make more Manifest tokens. After Chris untaps for his turn and draws a Dromoka’s Command, he shows it to Reid and that induces Reid to concede Game 3.
Chris wins Game 3, and is up 2-1!
Both players keep their opening sevens, and Reid starts with a Polluted+Delta, into Swamp, into Thoughtseize. Chris shows a hand of Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx, Windswept+Heath, Temple+of+Plenty, Dromoka’s Command, Sylvan+Caryatid, Reclamation+Sage, and Mana+Confluence. Reid decides to take away Chris’ Dromoka’s Command, and passes the turn.
Chris starts out with the Temple+of+Plenty, and keeps on top. This is followed by Reid playing out his Sylvan+Caryatid on his Turn 2, which Chris does as well on his Turn 2. Both players are once again setting themselves up for the long game.
Reid Thoughtseizes Chris again, this time taking Chris’ Reclamation+Sage. He follows this up with a Courser+of+Kruphix and a pass of the turn. All Chris has for his turn is an Elvish+Mystic and a pass back to Reid.
Reid plays a Temple+of+Malady and passes the turn back. Chris plays a Courser+of+Kruphix on his turn, followed by a Windswept+Heath, and then passes the turn.
Reid is the first person to make a big play, tapping out on his turn to cast a Torrent+Elemental. But Chris follows-up with a Mastery+of+the+Unseen, indicating that he can also make some big plays as long as he has the mana to do so.
Reid starts his turn off by attacking with his Torrent+Elemental and Courser+of+Kruphix, tapping all of Chris’ creatures. Hwoever, Chris activates Mastery+of+the+Unseen, creating a Manifest token. After combat, Reid plays a Dragonlord Slumgar, taking control of Chris’ newly made Manifest token (which both players know is a Whisperwood+Elemental, thanks to Chris’ Courser+of+Kruphix). With that, Reid confidently passes the turn back to Chris.
On Chris’ turn, he starts with an activation of Mastery+of+the+Unseen, creating another Manifest token (this time a known Courser+of+Kruphix). After going into the tank for a bit, Chris simply passes the turn back to Reid.
Reid quickly untaps and draws for his turn, followed by playing a Forest from the top of his deck, thanks to Courser+of+Kruphix. Reid then attacks with Torrent+Elemental, Dragonlord Slumgar, Courser+of+Kruphix, and the stolen Manifest token. In response to the Torrent+Elemental ability, Chris flips his Manifest, in order to gain some much needed life. After damage, Reid plays a Doomwake+Giant and passes to Chris.
Chris starts his turn by playing a second Mastery+of+the+Unseen, and passing back to Reid. Reid plays his land and attacks again, this time with his Torrent+Elemental, Dragonlord Slumgar, Courser+of+Kruphix, Doomwake+Giant, and the stolen Manifest token. Chris starts to make Manifest tokens, by activating his Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx. After Manifesting his first card, Chris attempts to flip up said Manifest token into Deathmist+Raptor, in order to gain massive amounts of life and have a deathtouch blocker. However, Reid kills the Deathmist+Raptor with a Sultai+Charm and kills a Courser with a Murderous+Cut. Chris only gains four life from this exchange, and the attack from Reid puts Chris to one life. After all of this, Reid plays a land, and passes the turn.
Chris starts his turn by trying to figure out a way to survive. He starts by manifesting a creature with Mastery+of+the+Unseen and playing a second Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx, sacrificing the tapped original due to the Legendary rule. After a good amount of math and some time tanking, Chris decides to concede Game 4 and try his luck in Game 5.
Reid wins Game 4, and ties up the match, 2-2!
Reid Duke summons some Zombies to do his bidding!
One final game to see who will get to play in the Finals of the Season One Invitational! Chris decides to play first and both players keep their opening seven!
Chris leads with a Forest and a “Go.” Reid starts off this final game with a Llanowar Wasters into a Thoughtseize. Reid takes the Sylvan+Caryatid out of Chris’ hand.
For his second turn play, Chris plays a Plains followed by a Fleecemane+Lion. Reid also has a two drop of his own, with a Sylvan+Caryatid.
Chris attacks Reid with his Lion, plays a Nykthos%2C+Shrine+to+Nyx, and passes the turn back. Reid follows up by playing a Satyr+Wayfinder and a Sylvan+Caryatid, in hopes of stemming some of Chris’ early aggression.
Chris once again attacks with his Fleeceman Lion, which Reid does not block. Chris’ follow-up play is a Deathmist+Raptor and a pass. For his turn, Reid plays a land and casts Hero’s Downfall on the Fleeceman Lion, before it has a chance to get Monstrous. With that taken care, Reid passes his turn.
Chris starts attacking with the Deathmist+Raptor this turn, which Reid does not block. Chris also attempts to cast a Whisperwood+Elemental, but Reid has the Disdainful+Stroke to counter the powerful five-drop. Somewhat dejected, Chris passes the turn back.
Reid starts his turn off with a Thoughtseize, taking Chris’ Dromoka’s Command, then follows up by casting Sidisi%2C+Undead+Vizier, exploiting his Satyr+Wayfinder. Reid passes the turn back to Chris.
Chris attacks into the new Sidisi, which Reid gladly trades away. After combat, Chris casts a freshly drawn Mastery+of+the+Unseen and passes back to Reid.
Reid takes the turn to cast Slumgar, the Drifting Death, in order to put a stop to much of what Chris is trying to do. Chris makes a Manifest token at the end of Reid’s turn, plays a land for his turn, and passes back to Reid.
Reid gives his Hexproof, Legendary Dragon lifelink by casting a Whip+of+Erebos. Reid attacks Chris, gains some life and then casts a Satyr+Wayfinder. With that Reid goes to pass the turn, but Chris makes a Manifest token in Reid’s end step.
On Chris’ turn, he flips his new Manifest to reveal a Whisperwood+Elemental, gains some life from the Mastery+of+the+Unseen, and revives the dead Deathmist+Raptor from his graveyard. That seems like a good value for only five mana! With that, he passes the turn back to Reid.
Reid decides that he would also like to get some good value, so he starts his turn off by Whipping back Sidisi%2C+Undead+Vizier, exploiting his Satyr+Wayfinder in order to search his library for any card. Reid then attacks with both the Sidisi and his Slumgar, which Chris choose not to block either. After combat damage, Reid delves away some cards from his graveyard in order to Murderous+Cut Chris’ Whisperwood+Elemental. With each player trying to out-value the other one, Reid passes the turn.
Chris draws his card for the turn, and begins to contemplate his options. He comes out of the tank with a Nissa%2C+Worldwaker, which he uses to untap four Forests. He then casts a Voyaging+Satyr and attacks with his Deathmist+Raptor. After all of this, Chris passes the turn.
Reid draws his card and starts his turn with a Satyr+Wayfinder, taking an Opulent+Palace. He then activates Whip+of+Erebos to get back a Reclamation+Sage to destroy Chris’ Mastery+of+the+Unseen. Chris makes a Manifest token in response, but loses his powerful enchantment. Reid then attacks Nissa%2C+Worldwaker with Slumgar, and Chris with the undead Reclamation+Sage. Reid says he is done with his turn after this.
For his turn, Chris uses Nissa%2C+Worldwaker to make one of his Forests a 4/4 with Trample. He then attacks Reid with the Forest, his Manifest token, a Deathmist+Raptor, and a Voyaging+Satyr. Reid blocks the Manifest token, but Chris Megamorphs it into a second Deathmist+Raptor. With that, Chris passes the turn.
Reid starts his turn off by attacking and killing Nissa%2C+Worldwaker with Slumgar, the Drifting Death. He then casts Dragonlord Slumgar, taking the Megamorphed Deathmist+Raptor, and passes the turn back to Chris. Chris can only play a Sylvan+Caryatid for his turn before passing back to Reid.
A Whipped back Satyr+Wayfinder starts the turn off for Reid, followed by an attack by Dragonlord Slumgar, the Whipped back Satyr+Wayfinder, Chris’ stolen, Megamorphed Deathmist+Raptor, and Slumgar, the Drifting Death – what a motley crew! Slumgar, the Drifting Death gives the other Slumgar the -1/-1 ability, giving all of Chris’ creatures -2/-2 overall. Chris blocked the stolen Deathmist+Raptor with his own Deathmist+Raptor (now a 1/1), and took massive amounts of Draconic damage. After a draw step, Chris extended his hand in defeat.
Reid+Duke wins Game 5 and wins the match 3-2! Reid+Duke is our first Finalist at the Season One Invitational!