I rode down from the mountains of Boone NC with Mitch Matt Morgan and Will on Friday night. We stayed at a hotel about 7 miles away so we didn't have too badly of a drive on Saturday morning. We got to the site and I submitted my take on U/B Control with Vampire Nighthawks and the misers Jwar Isle Refuge and Sorin's Vengeance. I Started out alright and was playing against Alex Bertoncini's Caw Blade deck at X-1 in an off camera feature match where before the round started they sang happy Birthday to him and some of the other Star City Games grinders while he tried to hide behind the Garruk feature match sign. Game 3 I Inquisition of Kozileked him on turn 1 and he had two Squadron Hawks in hand and followed them up with a topdecked Sword of Feast and Famine to close out the game. After that the day was pretty much over but I stayed in to grind out the Planeswalker Points and got beat by multiple red decks and grinded out the last round by my opponent not showing up.
Morgan played in the Legacy challenge and gave me a heads up for what to expect in Legacy for the next day. Everyone I came up with didn't do that well so we ended up going to Waffle House to make our money back in their value meals of All-Star specials and cheese hash browns. We went back to the hotel after that and play tested a little bit where I easily beat Matt's Stoneforge Mystic deck with Dark Confidant and Lord of Atlantis and got constantly crushed by Will's Zoo deck only stealing one game off of Wastelands.
Before I get started with the tournament report let me explain my deck. It is very similar to regular Merfolk decks just with better card advantage. I never died to a Dark Confidant flip yesterday and he helped me pull ahead and win some match ups that were close. You have 7 2-drop card advantages between Dark Confidant and Silvergill Adept and you should draw into one almost every 8 cards which would give you some form of card advantage almost every game turn 2 or 3 depending on what you draw and if you have an Aether Vial. I got 17th place with a very similar list in Richmond with it a couple weeks ago so I knew it was good but still under the radar. Before the tournament I filled out every card except the last card in the sideboard. It was either going to be Sower of Temptation or Llawan Cephalid Empress. After staring at each for a couple of minutes I went with the Sower of Temptation it probably should have been Kira Great Glass-Spinner.
- 4 Coralhelm Commander
- 3 Cursecatcher
- 3 Dark Confidant
- 4 Lord of Atlantis
- 4 Merrow Reejerey
- 4 Silvergill Adept
Round 1 NO RUG Pat Price
This round was over very quick. In neither of the games he did much. He was kind of mana screwed game 1 and then I brought in Perish and the match was pretty much over.
Round 2 NO Bant AJ Sacher
In game 1 my fish out race his Tarmogoyf and I manage to get it. Game 2 I lead with a turn 2 Dark Confidant which he copies with Phantasmal Image and then removes my own Dark Confidant with from the game and he buries me in card advantage.
Game 3 I am able to lead with a Silvergill Adept on turn 2 and a Force of Will on his Phantasmal Image that he wanted to copy my Silvergill Adept with. He convinces me to trade his attacking Noble Hierarch for my Silvergill Adept because I have a daze in my hand that I want to be able to use. He goes for a Green Sun's Zenith for 2 with a fetch land up and I wasteland it in response and then when he sacrifices it I get to use my daze. I am able to close the game out with Lord of Atlantis.
Round 3 Dead Guy Ale Graham Bounds
Game 3 I see a couple of Silvergill Adepts and am able to Dismember his Dark Confidant with his own Umezawa's Jitte and grind out his life total fast because he only is running one Scrubland so he was using some Shock lands instead which he took some damage from.
Round 4 U/W Stoneforge Mystic Trey McGinn
Game one he isn't able to get his Ancestral Visions down until turn 2 the same turn on my Dark Confidant comes down. Game 2 he has two Ancestral Visions but is kind of land flooded and I overrun him with Merfolk before he gets anything going.
Round 5 NO RUG Derek Jacobs
Game 2 we both kept greedy hands which was kind of embarrassing because it was an off camera feature match. My starting hand was this:
I keep on the draw and he leads with Tropical Island into Noble Hierarch which I snap Dismember and then we play draw go for a while each on one land fighting over things like Brainstorm and Green Sun's Zenith. I managed to get my Silvergill Adepts to chain into more cards and dismember his Tarmogoyf and grind him out for the win. At the end of the game I was at 3 life all off damage that I had done to myself and I had two Dark Confidants left in hand that I wasn't going to play. This match up honestly isn't that bad especially if you have 3 Perish the scariest card they have is Grim Lavamancer.
Round 6 Death and Taxes David Winsauer
Game one he leads with an early mother of Runes and I have a lot of fish on the field when he gets his Stoneforge Mystic out. He is stuck on 2 lands and I go for a Merrow Reegery trigger to tap his mother of Runes which prompted him to vial in his Batterskull and give the Germ Token protection from black. I guess he feared Dismember but I turned my guys sideways and gladly traded a 4/4 Merrow Reejerey for the Germ token and he soon died to my Fish Squad.
Game 2 he gets out the Karakas and Mangara of Corondor combo however when I attacked he blocked my Silvergill Adept with Mangara of Corondar and exiled an Island and used the Karakas to return The Mangara to his hand. Then I play my land for turn and cast Dark Confidant. His deck gets buried in my card advantage and I take over. I think Dark Confidant flipped a Force of Will once and I actually was kind of happy because I was at a reasonable life total and it helped counter his Serra's Avenger.
Round 7 Zoo Josh Burgoa
This is probably my worst match up Zoo has about a 66% chance of winning against Merfolk according to The Hatfield's recent article. Game one he kills me quickly with his massive amount powerful one-drops.
Game 2 he leads with turn 1 mountain into Grim Lavamancer and I think the match is over. However I wasteland his second land drop and am able to dismember his Grim Lavamancer and he is stuck on lands for the game. Game 3 he gets Umezawa's Jitte online and that's pretty much the game.
Round 7 G/W Maverick Daniel Potter
Game 1 He pulls the trick of having Batterskull in hand and getting Sword of Fire and Ice with Stoneforge Mystic. I swing into it and get blown out although even if I don't swing into it I still lose when he vials in the Batterskull and equips the sword of Fire and Ice to it. Game 2 I get to bring in perish and put it to work clearing the way for my Fish to get through.
Game 3 I keep Wasteland Underground Sea and I'm pretty sure he keeps a land light hand too. I swing into another trick with my Silvergill Adept when he flashes in his Scrub Ranger to kill it. We are both stuck on 2 land (his lands are Karakas and Horizon Canopy so Scrub Ranger can't help out) and he decides to cast an Enlightened Tutor at the end of my turn which was really scary when he revealed a Choke and I was worried that was the end of the tournament since I didn't have Aether Vial out. The odd thing was though I knew he had already missed a land drop and he still went for that. He continued to miss land drops I could have Wastelanded him but I didn't have any other land except the Underground Sea so I waited and played a Dark Confidant and hoped he would brick on land the next turn so he couldn't play choke. I think he Path to Exiled the Dark Confidant which allowed me to get another Island out on the field and I drew into Force of Will and wasteland landed him did I mention I had 3 Perish in hand. After I Force of Will the Choke my random guys and Perishes were enough to get there.
Round 8 ID into the top 8
Luckily Mitch got some pizza and brought it back and I was able to relax and eat some pizza with the guys I came up with before the top 8 started. I was in 4th and I drew with the person in 7th so I wasn't too worried about not getting into the top 8. I really wanted to play against Dredge in the top 8 since I hadn't used my 4 Leyline of the Void all day. However when they called out the top 8 I recognized the Guy in 4th as the Zoo player that beat me earlier and then I was called in 5th so I Immediately knew I had my work cut out for me in the top 8.
Quarter Finals Zoo Josh Burgoa
I wish the top 8 could have been more exciting but game 1 he applied a lot of pressure and fetched for his basic lands to protect him from wasteland I had to trade my Dark Confidant for early one drop attackers however maybe that is wrong because I needed more cards but didn't have any time because his deck is more aggressive.
Game 2 he wrecks me with an early Grim Lavamancer and the fact I was very land flooded didn't help out.
Overall the weekend was still a lot of fun and I wasn't too disappointed since I won a lot of hard match ups already. Looking forward with the deck I think the main deck is fine and in fact very powerful. The cards I would change in the side board are cutting the graveyard hate because it takes up too many slots and after Dredge won it will go into hiding for a little bit. I would add 1-2 Darkblast because it seems insane right now it deals with Grim Lavamancer and there are a lot of good one toughness creatures right now like Dark Confidant and all the mana guys. Also it is sick against Phantasmal Image which is starting to gain a lot of popularity in Legacy. There should be 1-2 Kira Great Glass-Spinner in the side board as well. Mental Misstep can protect your guys from most removal spells but it would have been nice to have Kira Great Glass-Spinner against Zoo. Sower of Temptation probably isn't necessary since there is a lot of good removal in the format right now. I might add a 3rd Tower of the Magistrate's since I never drew into them but I think it is a powerful card.
If you have any questions about the deck or sideboarding feel free to send me an E-mail at Bravermanmn@appstate.edu or you can ask on Magic Online under the screen name Mikebrav.
Previous Magic Accomplishments
I am a senior studying Business Management at Appalachian State in North Carolina and will graduate this December. I have been playing Magic on and off since the 3rd grade. However I just started playing competitively about 2 years ago. I made day Two of GP Providence earlier this year and have top 8ed multiple Scg Invitational Qualifiers in Standard and Legacy formats.