Now you might wonder where can a person with such a difficult name come from, right? No, I’m not from Asia, not from Africa, but I come from Europe – Slovakia, to be precise. But anyway, we do play Magic here and I’m writing to share my experiences with you.
It was the last week of learning in school for me with only two easy tests left and lots of time to test for the Euros. (I’m not going, but my friend Tom won the Slovak Nationals with a deck designed by yours truly. It was basically Frog in a Blender, but with a higher mana curve… And it was a lot better than the original).
So for the last Standard tournament before Euros, I was set to play Psychatog because it was consistent and I had some experience playing it. Tom wanted to play RUG, but his version was quite janky (only one Force Spike, and so on), so I suggested that he play the Jurgen Hahn version of RUG. Meanwhile, I started to hate ‘Tog and started to search for a more enjoyable deck – and I found Mike Long’s version of Deep Dog with white. I immediately built it and it was fun indeed.
But on Thursday, my Biology teacher tells me to make a project for Friday if I want a better grade – and there goes my testing session with Tom. I manage to get a two as the final grade, which is great (the grades here are one through five, where one is the best and five the worst). On Friday evening, I play some games with Tom but I lose when he adds the third Repulse as my primary weapon against the Roars. Nevertheless, I chose the U/G/w deck:
2 Mystic Enforcer
4 Wild Mongrel
4 Basking Rootwalla
4 Arrogant Wurm
4 Merfolk Looter
4 Roar of the Wurm
4 Careful Study
4 Circular Logic
4 Deep Analysis
4 Yavimaya Coast
4 Adarkar Wastes
1 City of Brass
When I arrived at Klub 22, I immediately started to look for Worships, the last Looter, and Selections. I knew one guy who has Worships, but he plays his ultra-bad G/W so he won’t lend me any. Fortunately, Maros had the Looter and Marek had a Selection. So when Tom arrived, I got all the cards and started writing my decklist. But in the next room, some players are already watching the Korea-Spain match and I couldn’t resist watching. By the time the Shoot-out ended, I didn’t have a sideboard or a decklist. So I hurried up when Tom comes up to me and tells me -“You got a bye, dude!”
Let me explain my deck plus sideboard a bit: As opposed to the original version, I played only one City because I had only the Enforcers and no Worships or Aura Mutations – so I added an Island instead of the second City. I can’t really explain my sideboard, ’cause it’s nine cards plus jank. I just threw it together before the tournament, and you can see that clearly. The Gainsays were for Tog, Springs for random Bridges and Worships, Compost for the usual Black decks, Aura Graft for Opposition. The Touch, Aegis, and Beast were pretty random, but the Unnatural Selections are for the mirror, Oppo, and Trenches.
Back to the tournament.
So I finished my deck calmly, lamenting the loss of Spain. When I drop the decklist on the table hoping our judge Macko wouldn’t notice he just smiled:
Him *smiling*: What are you playing?
Me: Just the usual U/G madness with White for Enforcers.
Him: Show me the deck.
Me: I don’t wanna; it’s top secret, you know.
Him: Okay – deck check!
So I walk around a bit a check out some matches and wait eagerly for my first opponent. The tournament had 25 players.
Now observe my switch to the present tense….
Round 1: *BYE*
Round 2: Pavol Marko
Weird, isn’t it? Pavol plays a version without painlands with taplands and such.
Game 1: I get a great draw after a mulligan with a looter that he can’t get rid of and I just play three consecutive Roars to win it. Even his Compulsion couldn’t save him – even if he did have it in play quite early.
Game 2: It starts a bit slow for both of us when I have a Rootwalla, a Mongrel, a Looter and a Roar token – but he has the same. I pray for my Selection, which doesn’t come, so we just sit there drawing cards until I can force through my Enforcer. On the next turn, I play my Selection and kill his Looter (we traded the Mongrels and Rootwallas a bit earlier). So I hit him a bit and when he was at six, he plays a main-phase Fact or Fiction – but all he could find was an Enforcer, but I was ready with my Selection.
Go crappy rares!
Tom is at 2-0, too, and I fear of playing him.
Round 3: Roman Antal
Roman is a good friend of mine – but he’s still a rival. We meet at each and every single tournament we play, and until quite recently I lost to him four times in a row. But since a Standard tournament last month, I won three in a row so I’m looking to even the score. He plays a version of Psychatog with Standstill and sac-lands.
Game 1: I get a quick start with a Mongrel serving the beatdown. Roman has a slight mana screw, and I just counter every attempt to get rid of the Hound; it goes almost all the way, but he plays the Tog. I play my Enforcer and counter an Upheaval – the Dragon kills him in one turn.
Game 2: I play a Rootwalla and it goes to work. I always have mana left to counter any troublesome Togs and the like. When he is at ten or so, he responds to my Looter with a Fact or Fiction. I have a counter, but I let it through and pay when I see a Ghastly Demise and he kills the Looter at the end of my turn. Next he tried to play a Tog, which I counter. I draw a Stupefying Touch, which I laugh at, and wish I hadn’t countered the Tog – so I just flash an Analysis. He puts out his third Tog, and I lure a counter with my Gainsay and he falls for it. So I Touch, and he disgustingly Demises my Rootwalla after I bring out a Mongrel. He takes the beats but after I double-Analyze, he has no chance.
Game 1: I start and manage to get either a Rootwalla or a Mongrel. I attack a bit, but then he gets a Tog – but I have three critters, so he doesn’t lay his Standstills. He is manascrewed and can’t get his Facts going, so I safely play out an Enforcer and fly over him.
Game 2: I get a Looter and he has no chance from that point. I draw everything I need and have no problems killing him swiftly.
Feeling good. Tom has 3-1, but has to play Duri who has 8.
Round 5: Dalibor Szegho
Dalibor is an okay guy, but he gets on my nerves sometimes.
Game 1: I mulligan, but so does he. I immediately topdeck my second land and start attacking with my Mongrel. He can’t get past two land, so I have no trouble smashing his life total down. He then kills my Mongrel with a Flametongue, but I ditch a Roar in response and play it next turn with an Arrogant Wurm to spare. His next play is a Lightning Angel, which doesn’t help him.
Game 2: He mulligans again and this time he only gets a Shivan Reef – so I calmly lay my Looter and start madnessing out Arrogants and Temporal Springing his land. He concedes when I have two Wurms out and I show him two more in my hand. Heh.
In between games, Erik comes up and asks Dalibor how it’s going, and that he hopes that he will beat me – and Dalibor goes,”I will win, of course.”
Quarterfinals: Robert Tichy (Cicho)
Cicho is kinda weird but he’s okay, I guess. I really didn’t want to play him, because he plays Spectral Lynx.
Game 1: I get that crazy three-Roar hand again, but I only have two lands and two Analyses in hand to go with that. But fortunately, I draw a Study and start playing out Analysis from the grave as I’m at three lands. And then I draw a Temporal Spring. I go”damn,” but don’t tell him or the judge that I forgot to desideboard one Spring although I’m a Level 1 judge myself. I’m ashamed of myself, as being a wuss sucks.
I get my lands and get my three Roars and although I blindly walk into a Shade and Lynx, his own Arena kills him. How lucky!
Game 2: I get a God hand with two lands, two Rootwallas, a Study and a Compost, plus something random. But he Duresses my Careful Study, followed by a Lynx the next turn. I just play my Looter and the Rootwallas and wait for my fourth land to beat him with my Enforcer. I loot and loot… But no fourth land. When he plays his Braids and Arena, things start to look grim. I loot again, but find only a Mongrel, which I sac. I find another Mongrel, but he only has the Lynx and the Braids. Next turn, I finally find the land, play the Enforcer, and find enough chump blockers/Edict eaters to get into the Semifinals.
What a winning streak!
Semifinals: Erik Stankovic
Game 1: I have a bomb hand, but only one land. I risk it and pay, as I draw nothing in the next six turns and die horribly.
Game 2: This time he dies to mana screw after not getting past the third land, so I beat him with random Mongrel/Rootwalla beats.
Game 3: He doesn’t have a counter for my two Looters – and he doesn’t stand a chance from that point on as I discard the chaff, draw into lots of counters, and beat him with my lone Rootwalla… Even though he Repulsed what he could. He tried for a Delusions of Mediocrity, but I had the Logic.
Finals: Jan Tomcani
Well, we wanted to play the draft so we agreed that one of us will drop to the other because the prices for first and second were the same. I lost the die roll, so I finished second without a single loss. (This, too, is technically illegal – The Ferrett)
In the draft, I finish third after drafting 3 Teroh’s Faithful about three other clerics and a Master Apothecary fourteenth pick! I got some solid blue, too, but Jan beat me fair and square with his Lava Dart/Think tank combo.
Thanks for reading – and write me if you have any comments or questions.