In order to illustrate my latest Reflecting Ruel column in which I presented the Grixis archetype in Rise of the Eldrazi draft I am going to try and force a UBR deck today.
The best card here is clearly Pelakka Wurm but I still like the demon a lot. I understand that the card is not very popular because most people are scared of what happens when it gets killed but you should keep in mind that A: the demon doesn’t have to attack on every turn and it is a pretty good wall and B: most decks have one answer maximum to the big guy and it wins on its own when it’s not killed within two turns.
Hatcher may be close to Heat Ray in a Red Green deck but the removal is a lot better here as it is one of the few cards you need to make the best of Mnemonic wall (and possibly Surreal Memoir).
Devastating Summons is an interesting option as a finisher but it is definitely not a third pick. The two actual options here are Deprive and Last Kiss. I think I like the counterspell a little more but I don’t want to pass much Black when I already have a triple Black spell.
Runed Servitor is definitely decent. The artifact guy is an early drop which won’t be a problem as far as mana is concerned but Null Champion is a little better. Even though it is not a very good early blocker when you’re on the draw you can often level it up fast in order to force your opponent’s first guy to trade. Also in the late game when it comes to finishing the job and when the games are usually under control a level up creature can only help.
Mnemonic Wall is tempting but Halimar Wavewatch is along with Enclave Cryptologist one of the best two non rare creatures you can expect.
It is pretty clear I will have a UB based Grixis deck but Wrap in Flames is still an interesting sideboard option.
Bloodthrone Vampire has absolutely nothing to do in this deck. I’d better simply pick the most annoying card for me to face.
I’m not picking the card because it’s a rare but because I’ve actually observed it working several times. I doubt I will make it work here but the card still is more promising than a sideboard Siege-Runner.
An excellent rare if not the best for the deck to open. If I can get some draw spells in order to find it regularly as well as Mnemonic Walls I could make this deck nearly invincible.
Pretty close with Staggershock but Hellcarver’s Demon makes me go for the Black card.
The Skyscout is pretty good but it is a lot better in an aggressive deck.
Pack one didn’t go too well but I now have many removal spells a bomb and a second solid win condition.
This second pack is going just perfectly. Even though the pick is not close here I think it is worth mentioning Perish the Thought is actually a much better card than it seems and I wouldn’t mind playing it at all.
I’m not playing any of these guys but the Invoker can be a good sideboard card agaisnt decks using flyers.
Akoum Boulderfoot is a bit better than the Coercion but it also costs double Red.
Could be an useful sideboard card if I get at least one more fixer.
As Red is a splash and I haven’t seen any Surreal Memoirs I clearly pick the Black removal over the Red one here. Keening Stone was almost my pick though as the card is not only good it also demolishes my deck. However I don’t really need it as a kill so I’ll simply try and get a second fixer in case I have to bring Naturalize in.
Hellion Eruption may be one of the top rares in the format and it belongs to my colors but it has absolutely nothing to do in my deck.
Tough choice here. I have only one Wall but many targets for it but in the meantime I think my deck has enough power and needs stability at this point so I go for the 1/3.
For mana concerns I like the Drone better than Emrakul’s Hatcher. I may like Inquisition of Kozilek but I don’t want a card which can do nothing when the deck already has higher risks of bad mana drawing than a more classic archetype.
I doubt I’ll play it… maybe should I have picked the worse but more annoying Snake Umbra.
This draft converter created by Benjamin Peebles-Mundy.
Visit the draft converter today!
1 Sea Gate Oracle
1 Cadaver Imp
1 Hellcarver Demon
1 Dreamstone Hedron
1 Last Kiss
2 Mnemonic Wall
1 Dread Drone
1 All Is Dust
1 Artisan of Kozilek
2 Heat Ray
2 Halimar Wavewatch
1 Runed Servitor
1 Null Champion
1 Bala Ged Scorpion
1 Evolving Wilds
1 Essence Feed
1 Affa Guard Hound
1 Stomper Cub
1 Wrap in Flames
1 Akoum Boulderfoot
1 Battle Rampart
1 Lagac Lizard
1 Perish the Thought
1 Kiln Fiend
1 Pawn of Ulamog
1 Goblin Arsonist
1 Repay in Kind
1 Vent Sentinel
1 Survival Cache
1 Hyena Umbra
1 Frostwind Invoker
1 Ogre Sentry
The deck is pretty good. It may be a little short in fixers but it only has two Red cards so it shouldn’t hurt so much. I have win conditions removal and a bomb so I should do pretty well.
Round 1 vs UW
In the first game my removal gets rid of his early beating and I have the situation under control until he plays Lighthouse Chronologist. When he reaches his seventh level I fortunately find Heat Ray and get rid of the 3/5. A few turns later I find Halimar Wavewatch and put him down to 8 when he draws his first annoying card for a while: Dawnglare Invoker. I have three removal spells left in hand at this point and the 2/1 can’t help him much. The second game is not so complicated. After Vendetta has dealt with Caravan Escort I follow up with enough removal and blockers to be at 16 life on turn 7 the moment at which I draw Halimar Wavewatch. A Regress means I lose a couple of turns but the 0/3 comes back and wins on its own while I sit behind an army of blockers and removal in case he tries to retaliate.
Round 2 vs WG
The first game is incredibly hard and it will take a misplay of his as well as several topdecks for me to win it. He opens with Knight of Cliffhaven which I can’t deal with until I am at three life and eventually find Heat Ray. He follows up with Pelakka Wurm but I draw a second straight Heat Ray. A few turns later I’ve stabilized the board as I manage to get a Null Champion to 7/3 along with Cadaver Imp but I can’t really attack as he has Totem-Guide Hartebeest (which went for Guard Duty) and Aura Gnarlid. He then plays Guard Duty on my 7/3 and attacks inexplicably into my 7/3 which kills it. A couple of turn later when he finds Gelatinous Genesis and makes three 3/3s I have found an extra blocker and a Regress making his following attack into a slaughter on his side and leaving me on one life. A few turns later my Level 4 guys finishes a game I should never have won but I still feel like I deserved it considering how his Aura Gnarlid play influenced the outcome of that game.
I quietly control the second game until he plays Gelatinous Genesis for 5. Three turns later the game is over but surely not in the way my opponent would have thought at this point. I first play All is Dust. Then he casts Dawnglare Invoker but I make him mine with Domestication. But my following turn is the best as I play Artisan of Kozilek into Cadaver Imp into Mnemonic Wall into Corpsehatch.
However you don’t always have All is Dust or Disaster Radius and the archetype is so slow that you will often be facing bombs which is why Lay Bare and Deprive are so good.
Round 3 vs UB
In the first game of the final I miss land drops on turns 3 and 5 but Runed Servitor helps me stop the beating as well as draws me a card to find my mana. Eventually my turn 2 Wavewatch reaches level 6 one turn before I have to face Sphinx of Magosi. I put him on two life and he’s about to untap with 8 lands and his big guy but he concedes. I guess I must assume he didn’t have any answers but it is still a very bad play. From now on I won’t have to play around any removal or trick other than Vendetta or Last Kiss which will make the match a lot easier for me. Actually the match won’t last much longer. I open with Wavewatch on turn 2 and he concedes on turn 5 as he knows he’ll never be able to race it.
Until next time…