Aaaaaand back to M13!

After my third won RAV draft in a row, I was finally hit by fate, flunking out of a tournament in round 1 due to color screw – ironically, with the possibly most consistent mana base I had drafted so far in this format, and of course against a 4-color deck without mana problems. I let that spell the end of my return to Ravnica, because I didn’t want to buy more boosters (so far I had only invested in a single draft set), and because I realized that I was actually paying THREE tix for entry, not the usual two, which explained why I was also out of tix earlier than I had calculated. I sold my superfluous RAV boosters and got into M13 again, going 1-1 in an 8:4, once again being color screwed with an excellent mana base (really, 8 Mountain, 7 Forest, 1 Rootbound Crag, 1 Hellion Crucible should work for a deck mainly consisting of Mogg Flunkies, Flinthoof Boars and Timber Wolves – shouldn’t it?). I reloaded on M13 boosters and tried again. This is the deck which made it (sadly, only in a 4-3-2-2):

8 Forest
8 Swamp
1 Cathedral of War
2 Duty-Bound Dead
1 Tormented Soul
1 Elvish Visionary
1 Ravenous Rats
1 Walking Corpse
2 Mwonvuli Beast Tracker
2 Primal Huntbeast
1 Spiked Baloth
1 Bloodhunter Bat
1 Acidic Slime
1 Rancor
2 Titanic Growth
1 Cower in Fear
1 Murder
2 Mark of the Vampire
2 Essence Drain
1 Rise from the Grave

Yup, those are two Beasts able to search out two Huntbeasts and two Mark of the Vampire to go with them! I obviously had a clear path to victory…

…which failed to materialize even ONCE. I cannot complain, since I won anyway, but I was really astonished that the obvious way to win just didn’t happen! Well, Mark of the Vampire also worked well on Walking Corpse, Tormented Soul and Acidic Slime.

In the finals I won against a player who started with 2 Welkin Tern both times, and I had Cower in Fear in my opening hand both times… which would explain why I won these games, but in both I never got to double-black mana… I put out a few creatures, put Mark of the Vampire on them and raced, using an Essence Drain here and there, and one time reanimating a Duskdale Wurm which had been discarded to my Ravenous Rats. Well, I doubt my opponent would accept the fact that I actually drew mediocre in these games…

My sideboard held, among other things, a third Titanic Growth (really didn’t imagine it wouldn’t make the cut when I drafted it), Fungal Sprouting, Bond Beetle, 2 Dark Favor, a Vile Rebirth and a Mind Rot, as well as an Oblivion Ring I could have splashed if my need was really dire. I actually never sideboarded anything – the deck was perfect as is; it just needed to draw a reasonable mixture of lands and non-lands.

The lesson to be learned here is: Combos in limited come to pass only erratically (in other words, only when your opponents play them), so you shouldn’t include them unless all parts of them are already useful. That was certainly the case here!

(Oh, and I reached a new limited rating peak at 1840. I know it doesn’t mean anything, but I’m still curious to see how high I can go before I’ll make my next dive again.)

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2 Comments on “Aaaaaand back to M13!”

  1. bezalet Says:

    Very well-written as you’re entries always are, it’s a pleasure to read about how you do in your drafts. Keep on writing about you’re losses also. One thing I’d like to know: Where can I look up my limited rating? Since the introduction of those silly Planeswalker-Points I cannot find my DCI rating anymore.
    By the way, did you ever see an Essence Drain go 12th pick? I did so in a draft with only six people, and was really shocked, especially since there was a scroll thief, too, which I had to ship to my neighbour…
    I wondered if I was at a table of absolute beginners, but then went 1:2 with a (in my opionion) really strong deck, containing Flames of the Firebrand, Searing Spear, two Switcheroo (which did not work out too well since I didn’t have Krenko’s Command or other token-producer), Void Stalker, Turn to Slag, two Divination and two Rummaging Goblins and splashing for Essence Drain and Public Execution. A bit to much expensive spells, maybe, but I thought the power level would make up for it. It did not, one game I got wrecked by Arbour Elf, Centaur Courser, Primeval Huntbeast and double Acidic Slime

    • Well, I will keep mentioning my losses, but I don’t thik I will write much about them. Actually, my goal was originally just to post my winning deck lists, but I found I usually wanted to say a few things about them.

      There is no DCI rating anymore, that’s why you can’t find it – it has completely be replaced by those silly planeswalker points. However, Magic Online still calculates and shows your rating (albeit only to you) – MTGO rating and DCI rating have always been two completely seperate things.

      Essence Drain as 12th pick is highly unusual and points to a few inexperienced drafters at the table, but if the booster it was in was unusually good, and players drafting black at the table had access to even stronger picks (not impossible), maybe it could have happened without someone bungling up totally. Drafting with only 6 people, BTW, encourags odd distributions of drafted colors.

      Then again – if you saw it 12th, it means you didn’t take it 6th at that table, so you should be familiar with the contents of that booster from that point on…

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