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Magic: The Gathering: Oath of the Gatewatch
#1
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İmage

So I went to the Oath of the Gatewatch prerelease after missing the last couple of sets. I only play Limited because I'm still reasonably new, and I don't have a load of money to sink into MTG. Also, I haven't played draft before because I'm scared of the drafting process, but hopefully I'll start this year.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I only play prereleases.

Deckbuilding:

My pool was decent, unlike one of the guys next to me, who's promo card was Hedron Alignment, which is useless in limited, and also several of his rares were Oaths, which are almost as bad (he left by the second game). I got a lot of good Black removal, and some big Eldrazi finishers, so I was set on Black/Colourless, but my difficult choice was my secondary colour. I had a lot of good Green cards, but there was a lack of two drops, and I already had the same problem with Black, so I decided to go against it. I eventually settled on Blue for its good counter-spells and evasion.

Here is my original build:

15x Creature:

1x Hedron Crawler
1x Mist Intruder
2x Slaughter Drone
1x Umara Entangler
1x Kozilek's Shrieker
1x Vampire Envoy
1x Drana's Chosen
1x Havoc Sower
1x Null Caller
1x Warden of Geometries
2x Jwar Isle Avenger
1x Deepfathom Skulker
1x Ruin Processor

4x Instant:

1x Horribly Awry
2x Complete Disregard
1x Spell Shrivel

3x Sorcery:

2x Oblivion Strike
1x Rising Miasma

18x Land:

2x Skyline Cascade
2x Wastes
10x Swamp
4x Island


The other cards that I was considering (and played around with a bit in the later matches) were:

-Conduit of Ruin
-Ruin Processor (my second copy)
-Abstruse Interference
-Spell Shrivel (my second copy)
-Tar Snare
-Slip Through Space
-Mire's Malice
-Pathway Arrows


As well as that, the other rares/notable cards I pulled were:

-Eldrazi Displacer (Rare. A good card in Sealed, but the potential for shenanigans in EDH make this a crazy card.)
-Relief Captain (Not a rare, just a great card in Sealed.)
-Seed Guardian (Again, not a rare, but another great uncommon.)
-Woodland Wanderer (Rare. Again, a card that really shines in Constructed while only being pretty good in Limited.)
-Bone Saw (One of the most useless cards in the set, so naturally that's the only foil I get from my packs.)
-Hissing Quagmire (My promo foil. Also a great card.)
-Wandering Fumarole (A great dual land.)

First match:

This was a strange one. I was playing a guy who was getting back into playing Magic after an absence of some nine years. He hadn't finished making his deck in the allotted time, so he spent the first five or ten minutes finishing it off. Then we played our first game.

He was playing UB as well, and it was a long, grindy affair. Our first five turns we were playing similar cards. We both got out a Drana's Chosen, and then both removed them with Oblivion Strike. I played my Vampire Envoy early on, to which he had no response. I started grinding him down with the 1/4 flier. I figured out by about turn eight that I really didn't shuffle very well, and I didn't draw a single Island the whole match. Not that it completely messed me up, as most of my cards were Black, but it meant that I couldn't finish him off with the two Jwar Isle Avengers that I had in my hand for most of the game. I eventually played my Ruin Processor, and got one direct hit in before he hit it with a Containment Membrane. Eventually I killed him with Vampire Envoy.

Apart from the seven damage from Ruin Processor, literally all the rest of my damage was dealt from Vampire Envoy attacking each turn. Since he restored one or two health at some point, this meant that I hit him for at least 14 over the course of the match from my faithful Vampire.

And by the time that game was over, we didn't have time to start another one, and so I won 1 - 0.

Second match:

This one was over a lot more rapidly. I was playing an obviously skilled player, and he played very quickly and efficiently. In the first game he curved perfectly, and I drew too many lands. He played a Barrage Tyrant and started throwing things over my defenses.

The second game was a lot better for me. I removed or negated his creatures before they affected me, got out both of my Jwar Isle Avengers and finished him off with my Ruin Processor.

The third game was unmemorable, but it went basically the same way as the first one.

I lost 1 - 2, and I changed out some cards. I took out Hedron Crawler, Umara Entangler, and Drana's Chosen. I wasn't sure initially, but I had enough Colourless sources for the few cards that needed them. They were all bonus effects anyway not mandatory costs, and otherwise Hedron Crawler was a dead play, as I had plenty of Lands. Umara Entangler was a 2 mana 2/1 most of the time, and I wasn't as bereft of early plays as I feared I may be. And without Umara Entangler, I only had one Ally other than Drana's Chosen, making it a 4 mana 2/2, which is obviously too expensive.

Realising that my deck was best suited to holding off more aggressive decks until I could put out my finishers, I added in Mire's Malice (although I was unsure about it), Conduit of Ruin, and another Ruin Processor.

Third match:

This match turned out very similarly to the previous one. I was playing against the last guy I played against at the Dragons of Tarkir prerelease, and he was running a several colours (not sure how many, but he was definitely playing at least White/Blue/Green/Colourless) Ally deck with lots of good mana fixing. Like in the match, he curved well in the first game, and started pummeling me some Landfall creatures and Hero of Goma Fada. It was over quickly.

I managed to curve much better in the second game, and I beat him with a Jwar Isle Avenger and a Ruin Processor.

As for the third match, I don't really remember it, but he beat me pretty quickly.

Another 1 - 2 loss, and after this match I changed out Mire's Malice for Umara Entangler again. I didn't even draw it in the one match that I had it in for, I just wasn't convinced by it.

Fourth match:

I got decimated in this match. We both started the first game by playing curve, which meant that our boards were locked on turn four when he played Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet. With no way to get rid of it, he beat me easily.

The next game he also played Kalitas, but this time I hit it with Oblivion Strike. He still wore me down and defeated me.

So after a particularly depressing 0 - 2 loss, things started looking up again.

Fifth match:

I won the first game by locking up the board, playing my big hitters, and using Deepfathom Skulker's ability to get through his defenses with a Ruin Processor.

He played more aggressively in the second game, and I lost just as easily as he did.

The third game was closer. The board was locked with three or four creatures apiece, and I was on sub-ten life, and he on about fifteen. I had a Conduit of Ruin and a Ruin Processor in hand, so I played the former, adding another Ruin Processor to the top of the deck. He removed the Conduit of Ruin, leaving the board in stalemate. At this point the time ran out, so we only had five turns to finish up, or the game (and thus the match) would be a draw. On turn one, I played the Ruin Processor that I had just drawn. Turn two he didn't do anything, obviously playing for the draw. Turn three I swung with the large Eldrazi, which he didn't block so that he could presumably block with everything later. At which point I played my second Ruin Processor which I had been holding in my hand. He played his turn four, but then conceded.

It was a great match, and I won 2 - 1.

Sixth (and final) match:

I ended up getting matched with a guy that I had met waiting outside King of Cards that morning, and had been hanging around with throughout the day (I don't know too many people there), so that was fun. It also meant that we knew each others' decks quite well, as we sat next to each other during the deckbuilding, and had talked about our matches quite a bit. He knew that I had a lot of removal, and decent late-game creatures, and I knew that he had a very aggressive deck with nothing costing over four mana.

He was playing WR and splashing Colourless, and the first game he completely steamrolled me. He was too aggressive, and I didn't play enough early.

The second game he missed his turn one play, and I hit my turn two and three plays, so I could keep up with him. It was even until I played Rising Miasma on turn four, wiping three of his creatures and only one of mine. I then finished him off eventually with one my trusty Ruin Processors.

The third game started off well for me. We both started off quickly, so he didn't completely overrun me. I managed to play my Rising Miasma with its Awaken effect to kill a couple of his creatures and transforming one of my Lands into a Creature, slowing him down but not killing him off. I played my two Jwar Isle Avengers, but just when I thought I had him, he cleared my board. His Sea Gate Wreckage meant that he was often drawing two cards a turn, which saved him. I ended up with a couple of two drops out, and he had four life left when the time ran out. He managed to destroy them both after I got him down to one life, and I couldn't finish him off. The game finished in a draw, and thus the match did.

Aftermath:

Because of this 1 - 1 draw, I ended up going 2-1-3 and coming 28th equal with my friend that I just drew with out of 50 players. So I ended up winning an extra pack, but I was still feeling bitter because of not winning that last match, which would have probably meant that I won two packs.

But what I got in that pack meant that I was glad that I didn't win my last match.

A foil Kozilek's Return.  Happy-dancing-crazy-rabbit-emoticon 

As well as an Oath of Chandra, but no-one cares about that.

Overall, it was really great fun, as always! I've now been convinced to start creating an EDH deck, because it seems like a fun casual format, and I finally saw a commander that I would like to use: Jori En, Ruin Diver.

Did anyone else go to prerelease? Anyone going to release day tomorrow or Sunday? Let me know how you went, or berate me for being bad.

Until next time!
İmage
 
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#2
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pretty cool write-up. the exile mech on ruin processor seems pretty situational though it seems you used them as beatsticks anyway. Jwar Isle Avenger seems like a below-the-curve flier definitely in a 1v1. Maybe there were better creatures in another colour? If you're playing 7 drop eldrazi you can probably afford to not run many 2 drops, and counterspells are definitely the worst type of removal you can get in limited, because you have to leave mana open for them instead of playing to a curve (they're fun though).

What cards did you have in mind for Jori edh? normally a merfolk commander = tribal deck but I don't think thats particularly good.. Pyromancer's assault has the same kind of effect but not much else does it seems. You could do lots of cantrips and cheap bounce spells (they all have to be instant speed) and definitely things like echo mage, but I don't know about a win-con,
There's 10 new legendaries in commander 2015 too, maybe one of those looks fun for an edh deck ? Check them out!
 
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#3
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(14-03-2016, 09:55 PM)████ Wrote: pretty cool write-up.  the exile mech on ruin processor seems pretty situational though it seems you used them as beatsticks anyway. Jwar Isle Avenger seems like a below-the-curve flier definitely in a 1v1. Maybe there were better creatures in another colour? If you're playing 7 drop eldrazi you can probably afford to not run many 2 drops, and counterspells are  definitely the worst type of removal you can get in limited, because you have to leave mana open for them instead of playing to a curve (they're fun though).

You would think that it was situational, but I managed to get them to proc every single time, due a decent amount of my removal and counter-spells exiling. Jwar Isle Avengers  were in soley because they were fliers. That I could often cast them cheaper was just a bonus. The 2 drops were because of my obsession with Arena in Hearthstone (which is a format where everyone gets their own individual draft), in which if you miss your 2 drop, you lose 50% of the time. Admittedly, I probably could have played without as many, but I figured it was more frustrating to lose through being mana-screwed then just having worse cards than the opponent in the mid-endgame, so I played it safe. You're totally right on the counter-spells, but I had a lot, and they are so damn satisfying!

(14-03-2016, 09:55 PM)████ Wrote: What cards did you have in mind for Jori edh? normally a merfolk commander = tribal deck but I don't think thats particularly good.. Pyromancer's assault has the same kind of effect but not much else does it seems. You could do lots of cantrips and cheap bounce spells (they all have to be instant speed) and definitely things like echo mage,   but I don't know about a win-con,
There's 10 new legendaries in commander 2015 too, maybe one of those looks fun for an edh deck ? Check them out!

I wasn't at all thinking Merfolk tribal! That would be way too expensive and difficult to aquire the older cards. As I've mentioned, I'm a pretty casual player, so exactly: cantrips and bounce. A whole bunch of Prowess and Surge creatures to overwhelm, and Izzet Guildmage for shenanigans. As for win-con, maybe Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius or Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind? Keranos, God of Storms? I don't know.

I checked out the new Commanders; I didn't like them. At all. Way too boring.
İmage
 
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#4
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If you're running blue in edh, make sure you get a rhystic study , 100% add to any blue deck. The new commander packs make it easier, but most edh staples you won't be able to get without buying singles online... it looks more expensive but it really saves a lot of money considering that buying boosters is basically gambling. This site is useful for finding commanders, and even if you choose to stick with Jori you can think about any of the other commanders because they might be strong by themselves anyway (dont need to worry about the legend rule woo). Nearly all edh decks should have a Sol ring (I mean, why not) so defs trade for one if you see it). Red isn't the most popular in edh but you can run things like Grip of Chaos or Goblin Game for shits and giggles. Warp World or Confusion in the ranks are also good fun but if you're running Izzet guildmage you won't get the best mileage out of them..- The new izzet guildmage (Nivix) is probably stronger in edh than the old one anyway.

A word about Niv-Mizzet - both of his cards in edh are usually included to be abused in infinite combos with cards like Curiosity. Some people think instant wins are lame (kinda like mass land destruction, hexproof or flickering combos) so something to keep in mind if you want to make friends...
 
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