I found Jeff Wiles’ article entertaining and enlightening at the same time. It is interesting that he actually tried to win several times in his games, and also that he plays Blue in trying to do so. Both are fatal mistakes.
The absolute, number-one colour to play in multiplayer is White – no ifs, buts, or whens about it. White has the vastest selection of utility creatures, excellent spot removal for creatures as well as enchantments or artifacts, and it seems inoffensive. This is the absolute key here. As soon as people see that you are laying down an Island, they will immediately become suspicious, and someone (usually me if I’m playing) will goad everyone at the table (through force of will, or perhaps in desperation with bribes of rares and soda) to eliminate the blue player. Once this is accomplished, the field is clear for you. Be wary of red players – for Obliterate, burn, and cards such as Molten Hydra and others can leave you on the short end of the stick quickly.
I won’t reiterate my older article on the politics of multiplayer, Casual Multiplayer, How to Make Friends and Draw Surreptitious Cards in Multiplayer, but it holds some very important precepts, namely:
1) Never make the first move. Always let other people do your work for you, and if you are made to do something, do so in the way that will allow you to control the game in the long-term.
2) Have chips and cola at the table. Not only can they serve as bribes and incentives to other people, but Chips have the added advantage of leaving a sticky film on your fingers. Do not wash your hands until the game is over. The film will allow you to”accidentally” palm an additional card during the game, and the sticky card sleeves will allow you to conceal the extra card by sticking it to another sleeve.
3) Distracting your opponent is vital. I’m not saying throw your commons at him if he Disenchants your Mirror Universe, but casually point him to another player’s field and then peeking (accidentally of course) at his hand can give you an incredible edge. This is multiplayer, folks; it’s a war out there, so never be the Boy Scout that loses.
4) Never play blue. People will assume you will counter their threats, and you’ll die more quickly than you usually should.
5) Always play White. More specifically, play cards like Congregate, Armistice (absolutely broken in Multiplayer; it allows you to Healing Salve an opponent to draw a card for 3WW), Swords to Plowshares, Aura Fracture, Story Circle, and various Wrath effects. Congregate is vital, since it can easily gain you upwards of ninety life at a well-timed casting.
6) Lastly, do not ever, ever, ever be aggressive. Either people will drop out if they get bored (in which case you win), or they will get tired of you and launch an all-out attack (leaving them open to a timely Rout, Vengeful Dreams, or other irritating White effect.
To prevent yourself from decking, play with Pursuit of Knowledge and add counters forever. If you must draw cards, play with Jayemdae Tome over Treasure Trove. Obviously the latter is better, but the perceived advantage of Jayemdae Tome is lesser, as they see you drawing only one card a turn. By the time it matters, you may already have drawn seven or nine additional cards. Most effects you use should seem innocuous enough that your opponents won’t worry about them. Argivian Find over Argivian Archaeologist, helpful global effects over narrower single-target ones, and so on.
In closing, I must say I highly enjoyed Jeff Wiles’ article, and if I can leave you all with one piece advice, it is this: Never be too proud to beg. It’s just one tool toward your ultimate goal – victory.