Sunday, November 28, 2010

Guest Post - Top 4 - 64 Man SOM Draft Premiere

This is going to be the first guest written post here at Lep's Corner and I couldn't be happier than for it to be from orangerhyming.  He has been on a tear on MTGO of late, in particular in Scars of Mirrodin 8-4s and today he is going to share is account of how he top 4ed a 64 man Scars draft premiere.  Enjoy.

Janking Into Top Four

A) Draft Janky Deck in Draft One
B) Barely Grind Out Wins
C) Begin Top 8 Draft on Pick 18

At first glance, this may seem like an unorthodox recipe for a Top 4 berth. Your first glance is correct;
however, this is exactly what happened in my first ever premiere event experience on Magic Online.
Had I known that I would have had any success at all in this event, I would have taken notes on each
round. As it stands, I will do my best to recap the highlights.

The event was a 64 player SOM draft premiere. Following the initial draft, it was single elimination. The
Top 8 drafted again.

Here is the deck I drafted:

Acid Web Spider
Alpha Tyrranax x2
Bonds of Quicksilver
Carapace Forger x2
Chrome Steed x2
Dissipation Field
Flight Spellbomb
Gold Myr
Leaden Myr
Perilous Myr
Screeching Silcaw
Slice in Twain
Stoic Rebuttal
Strata Scythe
Tangle Angler
Turn Aside
Untamed Might
Volition Reins

Island x9
Forest x8

Now, as you can see, there are some questionable choices in this deck. (Who plays Silcaw? Turn Aside
maindecked? 2 Tyrannax??) I wish that I had some incredible insight or tech to explain my choices. The
truth is that these were my only playables. The signals were so ambiguous and mixed that I never really
got a read on what the players to my right and left were drafting. I first picked the Voliton Reins, second
picked the Slice in Twain, and from there it got ugly. That being said, I did 3-0 with this deck.

Great limited card....or greatest limited card?!

The MVP of the deck was Tangle Angler, followed closely by Strata Scythe and Slice in Twain. My proudest/most shameful moment came when, for the win, I cracked a Flight Spellbomb to give my
Tangle Angler flying, attached the Strata Sythe for +4/+4, and played Untamed Might for 5 to win the
game via poison. There was a good, full minute pause by my opponent, which is understandable, before
he conceded. If I had been on the losing end of that game, I may have put my fist through my computer
screen. Alas, a win is a win is a win. I only drew Volition Reins once, to steal a Razor Hippogriff at a
timely moment for a win. I honestly don’t remember much else from the first three rounds of the
premiere. I’ll try to keep better track for the next big event I do.

Top 8 Draft

I was pretty psyched to make the Top 8 of a big event. As I was recounting the events thus far to my
friend uwgeric, I noticed that it was taking a long time to move into the second draft. I didn’t think
much of it at first, but I relogged twice just to make sure I wasn’t missing the draft.

Funny story—I was missing the draft. I don’t know what happened in Modo, but after completely
exiting the program and starting it back up, I was able to see my draft…AND THE 18 CARDS THAT IT
AUTOPICKED FOR ME. Clearly pissed, I tried my best to finish the draft with a positive attitude, with
varying results. All things considered, I actually had a semi-playable deck to work with. But before we
get to that…

My autopicked cards:

Instill Infection
Tel-Jilad Fallen
Withstand Death x2
Fulgent Distraction
Swamp x2
Oxidda Daredevil x2
Corpse Cur
Furnace Celebration
Golem Foundry

I think we are all glad this didn't make into the maindeck

(Really, Modo? 6 lands?)

The closest thing to a first pick in the entire jank pile was corpse cur. Not exactly how I wanted to start
my first Top 8 draft. Seeing as the only viable option that my autopicks gave me was to force infect, I did
my best to oblige for the remainder of the draft. Here is the deck I played.

Bellowing Tanglewurm
Carapace Forger x2
Carrion Call
Copper Myr x2

Corpse Cur
Genesis Wave
Golem Foundry
Grafted Exoskeleton
Infiltration Lens
Instill Infection x2
Myr Galvanizer
Myr Propagator
Tel-Jilad Fallen x2
Trigon of Infestation
Tumble Magnet
Withstand Death

Forest x14
Swamp x4

Going into round one, I didn’t like my chances. I mean, I did miss my first 18 picks. But, I am a fighter,
so I went for it tooth and nail.

Game One:
I get slightly mana-screwed early on, stalling on 3 lands. He is playing a U/W metalcraft deck, but it
might as well have been a straight artifact deck. He lands a couple of Chrome Steeds before I can get
anything going and then drops a Tumble Magnet. That’s all she wrote.

Game Two:

This was a crazy game that was over fast. The short version:

My side: Painsmith, Tel-Jilad Fallen
His Side: Tumble Magnet, Gold Myr, Myrsmith

On my next turn I play Tumble Magnet, giving the Fallen +2/+0 with the Painsmith, tap down the
Myrsmith, and swing for 5 poison.

His turn: Chrome Steed, creating Myr token.

My turn: Wall of Tanglecord, again giving Fallen 2 more power, tap down the Myrsmith again, and swing
for the poison win.

At this point, I feel like I have a shot. If it can win one game…

Painsmith...thwarting MTGO autpicker since 2010

Game Three:

This one was a hard fought battle. I got through for 3 or 4 poison early in the game and he stabilized.
Late in the game, I finally draw the Tanglewurm, making my Tel-Jilad Fallen unblockable. I am able to
hold off his assault and push through for enough before he can get me to zero.

Top Four:

I’m ecstatic that I made it this far, especially considering the circumstances of Draft 2. I realize that I
got pretty lucky in the first round, so I wasn’t holding my breath for a win in top four. It’s a good thing I
wasn’t, because I would’ve died a painful death by asphyxiation.

No need for details here. I lost to a much better Infect deck, 2-0. I remember both games beginning
with turn one Sylvok Life staff, turn two Ichorclaw Myr, which is just bad news. I lost to the better deck,
and I’m quite alright with that.

So, all in all, it was a crazy event. With my original draft deck, I was not expecting to Top 8 at all. Some
strong play got me through and I was proud of myself. Draft two was a mess. . I do wonder what
would’ve happened if I had been able to make all of my picks. Still, it was a lot of fun, and I walked away
with more packs than I had when I started…which, in the end, is what matters.


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