Tuesday, November 25, 2014

December Cube Changes

Commander 2014...Yes sir, let's do this!  These are actually not all commander 2014 swaps, but there was certainly some interesting flavorful Dominaria stuff in there with either relevant mechanics, or just-goodness.  Just to give a little background, we want games to go faster....

                                          OUT                                      IN

Monday, November 17, 2014

November Cube Results

Fun (long) day today.  Our first 8 player cube, with a small caveat, that Jake was not actually able to attend the draft and got stick with the Bot picks.  He made a good go at it, but its hard to pull together a deck with cards that were picked by a machine without any consideration for a color base.

Very strange results here today, please correct anything that's wrong:

1st - Jon (undefeated!)
2nd - Andy
3rd - Steve
4th - Eric
5th - Dave
6th - Dan
7th - Jeff
8th - Jacob

So, Jon walked in Mel Gibson in Maverick style "What's a plainswalker" and "What's lifelink" and "what do the numbers below the cards represent", then continued to hose everyone with his B/W Control deck, dragging out games for hours, presumably to keep up the appearance that he didn't know what he was doing.  Disgusting Jon, you should be ashamed.

Here's the decklist rundown:

Jon - 
B/W Control
Jon banked heavily on early game removal, and was consistently able to drop his Phyrexian Arena on T3 or T4, locking in card advantage.  Arena assisting in digging through his deck to grab a Whip of Erebos which gave his creatures lifelink, easily offsetting the life loss from Arena, and additionally providing a method of getting use out of creatures he had discarded to Liliana and Zombie infestation for a single attack.  In the late game, Magister of Worth proved itself as the defacto late-game sweeper of choice, allowing Jon to decide whether reanimating all creatures in all graveyards, or wiping out every creature except Magister of Worth (for those of you who don't know, Magister of Worth is Mageta the Lion's sister:-).  In one of the games, Jon cam every close to defeat, but cast a very timely disenchant on Andy's Mimic Vat, which had an imprinted Reveillark.

Key players for Jon:
Early/mid Game Control -
Card Advantage

(Worked well with the Blood Scrivener/Phyrexian Arena combo)



There were actually quite a few big players here as well in the early game, but essentially it was the tried and true strategy of stalling in the early game, take a bunch of hits and en up below 10 life, then start turning the tide.  A good balance of early game control, card advantage and devestating late game bombs made this deck a winner.  Jon played very well considering his recent lack of exposure to the game, and piloted it very well.

Andy - 
U/R Storm-ish
Andy had a very solid deck, the difficulty I think he had primarily was having only a single Storm enabler in Talrand (which performed very well), but the addition of Purphoros or Young Pyromancer would have made this deck truly deadly.  The draft initially started with 3 players (Andy, Dave and me) trying to draft storm, which is what cause the key cards to be in such short supply, but given that we haven't really fully implemented all the support cards for this Archetype, I think it has proven itself as a viable, interactive and fun to play option.

Dave - 
Again, U/R Storm-ish
I think Dave did a great job drafting here, he just couldn't get the key cards to take full advantage of the deck type.  He got Purphoros, but didn't get the spell generated tokens to really fuel it.  He made a great decision to grab Myr Battlesphere as an alternate Purphoros enabler, and some cheap threats coupled with Swords, but it was clear that if he had been able to grab another storm-centric token generator, it would have been very difficult to deal with him.

Steve - 
U/W Tokens/Blink
Very cool build here I thought and a lot of interesting and fun interactions, like this magical Christmasland combo he was able to pull off at some point:

To be clear, he had a batterskull attached to the standard 0/0 germ token it comes with, and had a spear of Heliod, so mirrorweaving the germ resulted in all of his creatures suddenly becoming 1/1 germs, and his opponents becoming 0/0 germs.  Capitolizing on ETB token generators, Steve blinked himself into some massive token armies.  The very last game of the evening, he was even able to Ultimate his Vensor.  Crazy (long) games.

Dan - 
RG Monsters
Not going into this one too much.  I shifted mid-draft from R/U Storm to RG Monters, as the two people immediately preceding me in the draft were drafting the same.  The deck certainly hit hard and early, but with Dave and Andy drafting all the Burn spells, i'd get my opponents to under 10 live within a few turns, but I just couldn't get the job done.

Eric - 
Rakdos Aggro
Similar to RG Monsters, the strategy was to get in hard and early.  Eric had a lot more late game stuff, and more answers than my deck, and performed very well.  His use of low CMC early threats and equipment to scale them up was pretty effective.

Jeff - 
U/W/B Control
I never actually played Jeff, so I'm not totally aware of what he was running, but I believe it could be best described as U/B Control.  The card list looked very interesting, I would have liked to play him, but alas, it was not "in the cards" - bada bum.

Jake - 
Draftbot Random
Jake made the best out of missing the draft.  He took the completely random cards from the draft bot and was somehow able to pull together a deck that cast spells and did damage.  A very difficult task indeed.  I did not play Jake either, so I'm not sure exactly what the strategy looked like, but it was an almost impossible situation.  I am excited to see what Jake drafts next time.

I don;t have a ton of time for these post-event wrap-ups, so I'll leave it there.  I think we all had a great time (especially Jon) and I come out of this tournament with two thoughts:

We need to figure out a way to speed the tournament up.  This took a very long time (11:30 AM to about 7:00PM).  We may introduce a modifier to the games to speed them up, or just put into place time limits.

Storm-ish is interesting.  Even without being fully implemented, we had two players drafting this and having fun playing it with some success.  Casting spells is fun - Two-for-Oneing on that same spell is fun x 2.  That couple with the fact that the support cards for storm are great cards even if you're not playing storm makes this a good pick I think.  Andy and I will argue violently about this over the next month or so and see what can be done.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

November Cube Changes

Wanted to give an update of the cube changes since our last round.  I will be calling everyone at 9PM tomorrow (11/14) to get the draft going.  Here you go!

OUT                                    IN