We do an occassional MTG draft night with the local gaming group. The most recent one I’ve blogged about was the old-school 5th edition night. At the end of last month, we also revisited the “old school” theme with another set: Weatherlight.
Like 5th edition, Weatherlight was a set that most of us hadn’t played. One of the guys said that this was the set that made him stop playing magic, and I certainly remember some of the cards–but I didn’t remember a bunch of them. I’m not sure if that means I ever opened these packs or, maybe I just played with the reprints?
Whatever the case, it was fairly new to most of us, and we had prepared it as a blind draft so nobody had time to prepare strategies for it. So, the draft themes that had come out of it were pretty varied.
My first pack had an Empyrial Armor in it, and that card is a complete house, so I was fully into white. Later, there wasn’t alot of good white cards passed my way, but I did wind up picking up a few more armors. Red, however, was fairly available. I picked up five bogarden firefiends, and that card should be a 2 for 1 in many instances (or at least a solid 1 for 1). I rounded it out with a single “lightning bolt” and a Thundermare as a finisher, plus a Thran Tome for card advantage.
My deck looked a little something like this:
But, I didn’t wind up winning the game, so I won’t focus on it’s construction that much. I wound up losing to Brandon’s “phasing” deck that was simply brilliant to me. He was one of the few people playing blue, so he had his pick of the cards. That included things like 2x Cloud Djinns for finishers, but what was more impressive was that he had seen a combo that I was oblivious to.
He drafted a Teferi’s Veil and a Vodalian Illusionist and then went deep on bad creatures with phasing like Fog Elementals. The combo worked brilliantly though because he wound up getting a 4/4 flyer for 3 mana, that phased out before it died at the end of combat. My deck frankly couldn’t do much against that as I had very few flyers.
He crushed me in our game, but he still didn’t win. He was completely dominated by Joe’s green deck.
Joe didn’t go undefeated. His first game, he insisted on playing an 80+ card deck that was far from ideal. That game was a loss, but then served as an inspiration to pare it down (with a little goading from yours truly). From that point on, he never lost another match. In fact, he only lost one game where I started off with an Emprial Armored creature and finished off with a Thundermare just before he combo’d me out.
His combo? Well, green cards.
He was just about the only one playing green, and instead of going with midrange creatures, he went with almost all small critters. The draft was a thing of utter brilliance. The combo consisted of dumping as many Llanowar Druids as possible, and then sacking them all to search his deck and put a bunch of Llanowar Sentinels into play. He had six of the former and seven of the latter, which made him get his combo with amazing consistency, given it was a 40 card deck. Of the remaining cards, 4/10 helped him get his combo pieces back and the rest were just small filler (that also did a great job in helping him beat face).
I was floored that I could build a deck that seemed so solid, and just get the floor wiped by two unique and wonderful combo decks. Congrats to Brandon for beating me to a second place finish and to Joe for dominating into a decisive first place win. This being the fifth draft, it’s great to see that we’ve had four different winners. That helps me to believe that we have a pretty balanced crew of gamers involved.
Our next draft? Well, I don’t know what it is, but it seems like it’ll be on December 8th. That just might be Unstable…