Back to drafting, back to a winning deck list.

Again I had to take a break from drafting for a long time after my last won M13 draft – well, actually, I played another one immediately where I went 2-1, but after that I went on hiatus again. At first, this was due to time constraints, but then, when I was just ready to get rumbling again, there were health problems: For several weeks, the condition of my back simply didn’t allow me to spend that much time in front of a computer monitor.

Now I was finally back in the game, and itching to use the couple of M13 boosters still in my collection. I first entered an 8-4, and OBVIOUSLY I would go 1-1 in it, with a R/U deck which was really unsatisfying, but at a table where probably no one had a strong deck – the boosters just didn’t deliver. I think that overall I didn’t stand too bad a chance against my semi-finals opponent, but he had just the slightly better draws. He won the tournament, by the way, and since his deck really wasn’t outstanding, just as mine, I take that as evidence that this was just a low-powered draft.

I immediately entered another draft, a 4-3-2-2 this time (in both cases, I made my choice simple because these queues had 6-7 players in them, and all others 1 at most). This time, the boosters weren’t TOO weak, but I still had a first pack first pick choice between Welkin Tern and Aven Squire (I took the Squire, since the next best card in the pack was a Wind Drake – I believe it is quite the tie between these cards otherwise, with the Tern being slightly more useful overall, but the Squire in the stronger color and shining in the right deck); and then, in the third pack, I had to first pick a Goblin Arsonist – a card I was happy to get for my deck, but would have preferred to take about 6-8 picks later.

My deck’s overall quality was decidedly mediocre, but I was able to focus on the cards I wanted and get the needed synergies. I still believe that R/W token aggro is the strongest archetype in the environment, and this draft win with a low quality deck reinforced that opinion of mine even further. I beat a GWU good stuff deck in the first round (one game punching through a Thragtusk!), BU control in the second round (Giant Scorpion, Vampire Nighthawk, Essence Drain, Sleep and Archaeomancer on Sleep were the things bothering me most), and in the finals RB control, where I had to fight through Giant Scorpion, Essence Drain and a Fire Elemental with Mark of the Vampire (which then came back from the Grave, luckily without the Mark) in the first game and kill him from 29 life after I had just lost my complete board (to be fair, he hit a few lands afterwards). If I remember correctly, the finals were the only match I won 2:0. This should be a testament to the resilience of this archetype.

This is the list:

9 Mountain
7 Plains
2 Goblin Arsonist
1 Warclamp Mastiff
2 Mogg Flunkies
2 Torch Fiend
1 Aven Squire
1 Knight of Glory
1 Reckless Brute
1 Attended Knight
1 Primal Clay
1 Bladetusk Boar
2 Griffin Protector
1 Kindled Fury
2 Searing Spear
1 Krenko’s Command
1 Volcanic Geyser
1 Wild Guess
1 Glorious Charge
1 Trumpet Blast
1 Captain’s Call

Sideboard cards I used:
Canyon Minotaur
Volcanic Strength
Mark of Mutiny
Trumpet Blast (another one)

Sideboard cards I might have boarded in under certain cirumstances:
Dragon Hatchling
Canyon Minotaur (another one)
Goblin Battle Jester
Fire Elemental
Fire Elemental
Divine Favor

I believe these were my SB plans:
Mark of Mutiny for Kindled Fury against GWU (he had a few big creatures)
Canyon Minotaur for Trumpet Blast against BU (I just needed more creatures, and his were 2/2 and 2/3)
Volcanic Strength and Trumpet Blast for Wild Guess and Primal Clay against BR (he had the much better lategame if he wasn’t flooded as in game 1, and I just needed all the speed I could get)

Oh, and in case you didn’t hear it the first time: Volcanic Geyser is mostly just a Searing Spear which costs 5 mana. And I DID pick the other Goblin Arsonist over a Turn to Slag, and I am adamantly convinced that this was right!

Edit: Even more outrageous, I picked that Mastiff over Divine Verdict – and that was correct, too.

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3 Comments on “Back to drafting, back to a winning deck list.”

  1. jashinc Says:

    To further cement your view about R/W-Aggro, people can watch the Görtzen brothers attacking with Reckless Brute in their new video…

    • OMG, I just watched that video (totally against my internet using habits) – what a terrible, terrible draft! It really was a miracle that they got something even remotely playable in the end after trying to draft the all-five-drop-deck…

      Let’s be clear: Tha drafting was moronic, the deck was misbuilt (although not as badly, and at least they corrected their worst error after sideboarding), and their opponents were weak and played badly. Still, they got around by finally realizing how to win via tempo. I hope they learned to pick up those Goblin Arsonists next time and ignore everything over four mana which doesn’t at least have Turn to Slag quality… It physically hurt to listen to them debating siding in Battleflight Eagle and Chandra’s Fury every single match!

  2. Those guys were indeed amazingly moronic (and not for the first time for that). I too suffered excruciating pain while watching that video, especially when they continued to completely disregard the Arsonist in their sideboard.

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