Thursday, May 20th – The day started out well enough at 2-0, wrecking Mythic and Grixis with Geopede Jund, but then in round 3, I ended up being paired against an old acquaintance of mine, Joel Allen. He was running some strange mono-White creation â€“ I couldn’t make heads nor tails of it initially. Emeria, the Sky Ruin? Kor Cartographer? What in the name of Hazezon Tamar was going on here?
Thursday, February 11th – Once upon a time, there was this curious little U/R deck, built around filling an opponent’s hand with cards and killing them with Ebony Owl Netsuke and Sudden Impact, not only throwing the traditional concept of card advantage out the window, but then rolling over the corpse with a steamroller and lighting it on fire. One could argue that it was truly taking the concept of a â€œtempo deckâ€ to its most extreme.
Friday, December 18th – Those who have read my intermittent ramblings in the past might remember that winning States has been my grail, my dream, my nigh-unattainable goal over the many, many years I’ve been slinging cards. I have come close, oh so close, in years past, making many Top 8s or missing them by whisker-thin tiebreakers. My precious, it taunts me so, but I shall have it…
Friday, October 9th – Those who know me know I’m a pretty nice guy. Need someone to help move furniture, got a favor to ask, I’m your man. And yet, my favorite Magic decks to play are resource denial decks; land destruction, hand denial and mill decks. Deep down, I suspect I’m a closet sadist. It would explain so very many things.
Tuesday, May 26th – I never miss Regionals if I can avoid it. Even if I scrubbed out, Lord knows I could use the diversion. Iâ€™d like to tell you about all my various decks I built for testing, but between the release of Alara Reborn and Regionals, it was mostly building decks with Jund Hackblade and discovering that they sucked. I ultimately settled on B/W Tokensâ€¦
Thursday, March 27th – Wizards has tweaked the upcoming Extended rotation, letting up play with our Onslaught fetchlands for another year. Good news for those who shelled out big bucks for those Flooded Strands. Nevertheless, a whopping seven sets are leaving Extended, a veritable K-T Extinction Event in the Magic kingdom.
I had my doubts about the venerable Red Deck Wins in this current Extended environment. It didnâ€™t have a good showing in Valencia. Too much hate in the environment. From Counterbalance to Vedalken Shackles to Engineered Explosives to Doran toâ€¦
Iâ€™m not sure why States, as a tournament, holds such an allure for me. Maybe itâ€™s the freewheeling, undefined metagame, which allows for any deck to break through and become the Next Best Thing. Maybe itâ€™s the mad scramble to find any crumb of tech to wedge into a deck.
When I’m testing for a big tournament for Regionals, the modus operandi is usually to build a gauntlet, test, read, test, read, rebuild the gauntlet, settle on a deck, and, usually in my case, audible at the last second. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. This year, I thought, might be different. For, you see, I found the deck I wanted to play very, very early in the testing process.
Is Mono-Black Control a viable idea with the printing of Damnation and Extirpate? One’s initial response would be “well, duh,” but Dave decided to put it to the test, starting with Jeroen Remie’s original decklist and going from there… Did his experiments succeed? Read on to find out!
Standard is a wide-open field right now, but many if not most of the Tier 1 decks are powered by the trifecta of the Power Plant, Mine and Tower; the mighty Urzatron. With the release of Planar Chaos, every deck gets a few new trinkets to toy with. The Tron-based decks are no exception. But who gets the best toys? You could make an argument for my personal favorite of the Trons, TriscuitTron.
While my flight down was comped by the fine people at Sony, bringing the significant other down was not, and last-minute flights from the middle of nowhere are not cheap. However, I was coming into some money soon (one hoped), and when was she ever going to get to see me on a game show again?
I’m praying I got those early jitters out of the way, and will always, always remember to give nothing but last names from here on out, and that hopefully won’t be just for this round. During the break, Jeopardy! staffers come out to offer encouragement and exhort us to keep the round going — clear the board, that’s their mantra.
We’re up to the fourth taping and we’re running out of contestants. There are always a few extra would-be players, mostly locals who are generally the last chosen since they can always come back, whereas those of us who fly are kind of restricted to the day(s) we arrived. There’s five people left for four slots, so I like my chances.