Stuart's MTG Page, or more accurately entitled, "Why am I so bad at sealed deck tournaments?" - Read on to see the painful mistakes or just plain bad luck I have....

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Ravnica Booster Draft


Date: 15th October

Location: Folkestone

Event: None, well, DnD Weekend

Type: Ravnica Booster Draft

Attending: [7] Me, Ian, Chris, Rob, Keith, Dave H, Chris.


This was a big DnD session down at Ian's parents house in Folkestone, and on the Friday night we got down there, we decided to do a Ravnica booster draft. We started very late, which didnt help as there where 7 of us, and the games where going to go on for 6 to 7 hours. We started gone 10pm, so it was going to be a late one.....

As usual, we rolled for positions and table seating, and they ended up as follows. As only 7 of us, there would be a bye to each player as well.

Table Seating
Match Positions
A) Chris, B) Stuart, C) Brad, D) Rob, E) Keith, F) Dave, G) Ian
- the deck

I went Black and Green, but the only Golgari card I had was a Rotwurm. I had some land drawing through a Civic Wayfinder, mana from a Deep Shadow Elf, and card drawing (although with penalties) through the Cloister. I had some library manipulation with a single Lurking Informant, and creature removal through two copies of Darkblast, a Last Gasp and a Clinging Darkness.

Again, its hard to list the exact reasons why I choose the colours I did, but obviously I had my reasons. I couldnt get into anything to start with - I think I did what I could with the selection that was being passed to me, and hoped for the best. I dont think I did that bad, but I had no real bomb cards, but did have some creature removal, and some card advantage. I have what I think is now a very good knowledge of the card set, but knew this would not get me in the top two unless I was VERY lucky.

I think it could have done with more creatures though.

Land - 17

Creatures - 13

Just make sure you use this in a deck with no instants, as drawing 2 cards a round is very helpful...

10 x Swamp
7 x Forest

G: Hunted Troll **
G: Greater Mossdog
G: Ivy Dancer
G: Civic Wayfinder
G: Elvish Skysweeper
G: Elves of Deep Shadow
G: Stone Seeder Hierophant
G: Seige Wurm
G: Bramble Elemental
B/G: Golgari Rotwurm
B or U: Lurking Informant
B: Dimir House Guard x 2

Spells - 10

Art: Bottled Cloister **
Art: Golgari Signet
G: Gather Courage
G: Moldervine cloak
B: Darkblast x 2 *
B: Dimir Machininations*
B: Last Gasp
B: Clinging darkness
B: Necromanic thirst

Deck Stats: 40 cards
Colours: Black/Green

- the games

Game One - Chris

Against Chris again in my first match. He was playing Red/White, and had some nice cards including a Hunted Lamasuru - however things worked very well for me, I had tons of mana out, some card manuipulation, Last Gasp and Dredging Darkblasts, winning the game with a Gather Courage on my Rotwurm - I didnt even get touched.

The second game started more evenly, and we traded a few hits here and there. I removed his Sunhome before he could get more life back, and then hit him hard with a Seige Wurm and the Fear Guard. Next turn I drew the Cloak and enchanted the Guard, and Chris conceded. For reference, the Cloister came out in both games early enough to help accelerate my draw.

Result: 2-0 Win

Game Two - Keith

Keith also played Red and White, and although he got a few small hits in, my cards worked well, and a Bottled Cloister feeding me an additional card a turn. Both my Fear lads hit the table, and its quickly over.

For Game Two, Keith got off to a much better start, his tempo was excellent, and within 5 rounds he had enough land and creatures for me to realise that I wasnt going to win. His flyers and other creatures killed me off and I had only hit him once.

Game three was terrible for me. We both started quick, and I had the Cloister down to start feeding me cards, but this quickly turned into a nightmare as the cards in my hand where all combat tricks and his creatures where bigger than mine - I needed the cards in my turn to be able to do anything against him. Soon all over, and Keith ended the game on 23 life to my nothing.

Result: 2-1 Loss

Game Three - Dave H

Dave played Black and Green, and the first game was pretty much over before others had dealt their hands - I drew extra cards, he had a full hand and only 2 land in play, while I had two 5/* creatures down - he had zero chance of recovery, and was dead a round or two later.

Game Two was nearly as quick - we started off, Dave a little better this time, but my Hunted Troll decided to make an appearance, which I then made Forest Walk with the Ivy Dancer. Surprisingly, the game didnt last long after that. Although life totals are not an accurate way to depict time, over both games, Dave had done a total of 3 damage to me, and I doubt we played more than 9 turns a game.

Result: 2-0 Win

Game Four - Brad

Brad was playing Black and Blue, and an early Cloister helped me massively, as Brad's deck relied on some card discard tricks which just didnt work on me as I had no hand for him to target during his go. A 0/5 flying blue wall from Brad slowed things down for a while, but his mana was just not quick enough, and by the time it started working for him, my big lads took him down, and I had taken no damage at all.

The second game was completely reversed - I was hampered by mana, Brad stormed ahead, and within 7? 8? rounds he had won the game, and I had only managed to clip him slightly.

Game three was even worse for me. Brad flew along, and I badly struggled for tempo. Again, within a few short rounds, I was dead, and Brad had hardly been touched. Brad did have some nice Dimir cards, including a Cutpurse and a Dual land, as well as [bin x library cards, gain x life].

Result: 2-1 Loss

Game Five - Ian

Ian was also playing Red/White, and the game started very evenly, as we both went down to 10 life each, before it then swung in Ian's favour. I started to get close to dying, moving into low single digits, while Ian gained life, heading back up to 15. Thankfully my game started to improve, and I massed creatures do to 15 points of damage to Ian before he could do the 2 he needed to kill me.

The second game dragged for ages, and I started to Dredge Darkblasts to kill Ian's better creatures, and then the rest of my creature removal started to kick in, and I whittled him down to zero. During this game, Ian had the Artifact that allows you to give bonuses to your creatures if you share a colour, and I took great delight in milling every useful card in his deck with the Informant - I didnt have to waste mana as he had to play with the top card exposed, and he would turn a card over, and just look at me as I said "...well, you aint having that..." - he hated me for that...

Result: 2-0 Win

Game Six - Bye

A resounding two nil victory over my invisible opponent.

Game Seven - Rob

Rob was also playing Black and Green - I dont have much notes written for him, and it was around 4am at this point - I just the scores for the games. It looks like it was a close first game, we traded life evenly down to the low teens, and then I won, probably with the same card combinations as above.

For the second game, things went badly for Rob, and it looks like he conceded early, unless I managed to do 18 damage in one go....

Result: 2-0 Win


Keith vs Brad, and I belive Keith won - sorry dont have the was late, well early, and DnD was starting promptly in the morning...

- hindsight

Hmm, tricky one. I buggered up the scores, which meant it was quite possible that I could have been in the final. Or not as the case may be. Both the people I would have played beat me 2-1, and this is probably where I should say "...oh I was mana screwed thats why I lost..." but I am certain others could quite easily say the same so I wont bother.

So, back to the deck. I mentioned at the begining that I didnt think the deck was one that could have won, and to make it more effective, it could have had more creatures as a start, or better ones (Guildmage, another Rotwurm) and finally some better removal (Disembowel, Putrify). I had zero fliers as well, and even one Stinky would have helped keep things at bay.

It was just average, rather than being good, and it was only my l33t sk1llz (and a fair dose of luck) that won me the games that I did. I have definatly started seing the power of the Transmute and Dredge mechanics in this set though now, and liking them over my inital favourite of the Boros guild, and the Radiance tricks that helped me get the points in previous tournaments.

Magic the Gathering images used without permission, design by me.