Shadows Over Innistrad Prerelease Report

Last night I went to a Shadows Over Innistrad Prerelease. This was my first paper event, or at least my first DCI sanctioned event, so there’s a lot to talk about. Let’s not waste any time and jump right in.

There are multiple reasons as to why this was my first event, but there’s only one worth talking about. As a disabled person there’s always a certain anxiety in doing something new due to concerns about accessibility. These concerns were addressed through doing some prep work(the type that everyone benefits from doing) as well as a good store environment. Said store is Labyrinth Games & Puzzles, which is just an all around excellent store that I highly recommend.

There’s a varying amount of prep work that one can do for a prerelease, ranging from not knowing anything about the set to suing things like Cockatrice to do limited testing. I went for something in between, following the spoiler, looking at the full spoiler, watching the LRR preprerelease, listening to the LR set review and reading LSV’s set reviews; which is to say a lot of time went into figuring out how the set works and familiarizing myself with the set. By the time I showed up and got my packs, I felt comfortable in making the best of my sealed pool.

My pool didn’t exactly offer many options. White had a Hanweir Militia, some creatures and removals, Blue had a Jace and five bounce spells. Black had a good mix of removal and creatures but the first tier, of cards that I wanted to play was only eight cards. Red and Green had a plethora of playables, three good rares(Devil’s Playground, Flameblade Angel, Silverfur Partisan). G/R on a first pass got me to 20 cards, added in some more marginal cards to get to 23 and went to battle with:

Creatures

1x Insolent Neonate

1x Falkenwrath Gorger

1x Kessig Forgemaster

2x Hinterland Logger

1x Sanguinary Mage

1x Graf Mole

1x Silverfur Partisan

1x Bloodmad Vampire

1x Howlpack Wolf

1x Voldaren Duelist

1x Pack Guardian

2x Intrepid Provisioner

2x Cult of the Waxing Moon

1x Flameblade Angel

1x Kessig Dire Swine

Instant

1x Rush of Adrenaline

1x Aim High

Sorcery

1x Rabid Bite

1x Reduce to Ashes

1x Devil’s Playground

Land

9x Mountan

8x Forest

 

My sideboard was largely irrelevant save for a copy of Root Out. It’s a fairly aggressive deck that doesn’t just fold in the late game. I ended up going 3-2 with this deck, with one my losses being on account of multiple punts on my part. Instead of recapping the rounds it seems more useful to just note my random observations.

  • A lot of creatures have 3 power. 4 or more toughness is a good way to have your creature live through most combats.
  • While there are a lot of X/1s in the format. I never saw enough to make me wish I had Dual Shot in my main deck (Except as a way to deal with fliers which I was sorely lacking in.)
  • Insolent Neonate taken in its individual parts is bad, but adding them all up gives you a card that isn’t terrible in aggro decks and I imagine that he goes up in a dedicated vampire deck.
  • Silverfur Partisan is really good, the ability is just instants and sorceries, not instants and sorceries you control
  • Delirium is in fact payoff for self mill and there are enough cards in the set of harder types to get in the graveyard that even a non-dedicated delirium deck will get there if the game goes on long enough.

 

Beyond that I don’t really have much to say. I played against players who had good cards in their deck and they all seemed obviously good. A lot of games didn’t feel set specific, they were just good games of Magic that played well. I look forward to playing more of this Limited format to see if how unique it is and how it holds up. Till next time.

 

MTG Legendary Rule Changes and Flavor

Before I get into this week’s post some administrative stuff. I am switching over to a biweekly schedule in order to give myself more time to come up with better posts instead of the rush that I sometimes felt in order to just get something done. Secondly in between a death in the family and the general chaos of moving out of an apartment I’ve been too busy/ distracted to come up with anything to write about.

When M14 comes out there will be some rule changes along with it; some of them will be minor while others are very important. The biggest one of them is that the way legendary permanents will work is that each player will now be able to control legendary permanent with the same name and that when there is more than one you choose which one stays in play. The ramifications of this are quite large in terms of gameplay, especially in Eternal formats. There has also been a great deal of discussion about the flavor implications of the rule change. I don’t have much of an opinion on the gameplay changes since it doesn’t really affect what I play* but the flavor objections I find strange. Magic is a very flavorful game, except for the actual game.

Before I continue I just want to make it clear I really like the flavor of Magic. When it comes to player pyschographs I’m a Spike/Johnny/Vorthos. The flavor of Innistrad was one of the hooks that got me into the game. But at a certain point in actual gameplay you have to recognize the fact that mechanics are mechanics and there’s no amount of handwaving you can do to change that fact.

What do I mean by this? That the basic premise of a game, that each player is a planeswalker who is able to use their magic to fight their opponent breaks down when you look at it too closely. Decks often have creatures that flavorwise are mortal enemies working together. For example Avaycn’s Pilgrim and Huntmaster of the Fells being in the same deck might be a good gameplan, but flavorwise the two should be trying to kill each other. In this case the bigger the cardpool the less of an issue this is as the planeswalker aka player is able to use the full power of the multiverse. There are also some abilities that only make so much sense but there’s an abstraction road block. The one that immediately comes to mind for me is lifelink, how am I as a player getting more life from this creature. Extort is similarly weird in this regard.  Under the current rules Clone effects also worked very strangely in that creating a clone somehow caused all of them to blink out of existence/quit/however you want to look at it. With the new rules, clones actually work like clones are supposed to. If more than one player has a legendary creature then you can rationalize it as a clone. By and large when it comes to the new rules the game is actually more flavorful with one glaring exception.

Legendary lands under the current rules are a bit weird in that if both players try to tap into the power of it then no one can for some reason. Now its a matter of everyone can use it. This can be seen as more flavorful in that land/area/location is the focal point of the duel. So while not the primary stated reason for this change, it can be seen as more flavorful this way.

The flavor kinda breaks down with legendary artifacts. These things are one of kind and have unique properties to them that make them what they are. Counterfeiting them  cheapens that idea but in theory will make gameplay itself more interesting.**

Now where the current legend rules makes the most sense and where changing them makes the least sense is with planeswalker. Planeswalkers are supposed to be your allies in battle and if two them appear then they both vanish cause they aren’t going to help both of you. There really isn’t anyway to rationalize this and sometimes you have to just know when to give up.

All in all, I find that the new rules make the game more flavorful but also acknowledge that actual games of Magic really aren’t that flavorful. If they were then the game would be vastly different then what it is today and probably worse for it.

*Of course there is much speculation that Theros will be heavy on legends in which case it will affect what I play for the next two years in some form.

**This I’m really never going to deal with since I don’t play on playing Legacy/Vintage anytime soon.

Gatecrash Set Overview Part II

Here we are for the second part of my gatecrash overview, this isn’t anything in depth but rather my own personal thoughts on what the new set brings.

As always when it comes to limited go read Ars Arcanum and listen to Limited Resources, they won’t steer you wrong.

Limited 

So it seems Simic is horrible in sealed but could be the closest thing to Selesnya in terms of smooth progressive game plan.

Orhoz makes suicide deck seem like a bad idea and extort is really freaking powerful.

Otherwise out of the gate all of the guild seems balanced.

Tempo is the name of the game, if you stumble you’re going to die.

Standard Pauper

The hexproof aura deck got worse as we now have an edict effect again. But that really didn’t stop it before, it just seems less dumb now that there’s an answer beyond race them or get lucky.

Conversely Mono Black got better with the addition of said edict as well as some other cards, mainly things with extort prinied on them.

Small Evolve creatures plus the stuff that Green and Blue already have is a deck that’s just asking to be made, it might not be good but the deck is there.

Prophetic Prism seems like a good way to do color fixing and will probably replace Transguild Promenade.

Boros Humans is also a deck that is asking to be made and I will probably run that regardless of how good it is.

By and by none of the cards really jump at me in a wow sort of way, but rather as a sort of topping to the format as it is now.

The reason for this post being so short is that unlike the last time I did this, mainly because I feel like I was lot more thorough this time around and I haven’t gotten a chance to play with the cards yet.

Gatecrash Set Overview Part 1

Well it’s one of those times of year again, a new Magic set is upon us and this is one is interesting to say the least. This week I’ll be looking at things in broad strokes while next week will have some more precise thoughts in it. Let’s get started

The Guilds and Their Keywords

Boros: The Boros Legion have the Battalion mechanic this time around, which is when the creature that has it and two other creatures attack , it gives you a special effect.  Some of the cards that have are freaking nuts, like Legion Loyalist while others aren’t as flashy. The context of the board means everything and judging it its hard. When it works, it works and when it doesn’t it really doesn’t.

Dimir: House Dimir have Cipher, after you cast a spell you can put the ciphered spell on a creature and when they do damage to a player the spell effect triggers again. So its basically a way to make Auras better and in order to compensate for that all the spells are really expensive. Are you going to pay 4 to cantrip and then turn a creature into a Scroll Thief/Stealer of Secrets? Hexproof( and shroud actually since it doesn’t target) will want this the most. Even then its not all that great since it doesn’t make Ethereal Armor better. Everyone else can make use of this in limited if its a big enough dude.

Gruul: The Gruul Clans have Bloodrush, which basically means you have a creature that can also be played as a pump spell for less. I really like this ability, it smooths out your mana(well the best ones that you can reasonably expect to cast both ways) in that it still lets you use your cards even when you have mana problems, it helps with top decking them late game, and the abilities they grant are pretty good in the world of pump spells.  It also can’t be countered.

Orhoz: the Orhoz Syndicate have Extort, which is when you cast a spell you can pay either a black or white to do 1 damage to your opponent and gain that much life. It’s a kicker variant, where its all about incremental advantage and using up your mana. This is also a reasonable mechanic that comes on good cards to support it.

Simic: Last but not least, the Simic Combine have Evolve, whenever a creature with greater power or toughness enters the battlefield under your control put a +1/+1 counter on target creature. Keeps your creatures relevant throughout the game and Simic has counter shenanigans to go along with it. This is probably the mechanic I’m looking forward to the most in terms of actually playing with it. Its powerful, it does what green/blue likes to do and it keeps my early game creatures relevant. Its also a terrible top deck late game for that same reason.

the Guilds as Archetypes

I’m defining best card based upon the watermark and ability, they’re not necessarily multicolored 

Boros: At first glance they’re the other half of the token theme from Return to Ravnica and also have not inconsiderable part when it comes to auras. MoreQuantity is its own quality and haste is fairly important to turn on battalion. Skyknight Legionnarie is probably the best Boros Common.

Dimir:   Their thing is actually mill, like mill that might actually be viable in the sense of there’s more cards that support milling and they’re not terrible like say Chronic Flooding is. On the other hand, that gets said about every format before it sees play, so who knows? Horror of the Dim or Deathcult Rogue stand out to me as best commons for their synergy with cipher.

Gruul: As much as I like G/R aggro it still boils down to kill your opponent before they kill you by smashing in their face. Best common: pit fight: instant speed Prey Upon is nothing to scoff at.

Orhoz: Stabilize and use Extort to push through the win. Any of the common extort creatures seem good and somewhat interchangeable.

Simic: Grab all the lands and make all your creatures bigger. Best common seems to be Cloudfin Raptor.

More Generic Thoughts

This is a multicolor block and the fixing is still bad. On one hand there is prophetic prism, on the other hand gates, keyrunes and shocklands are kinda poor for limited as it turns out.

Speaking of gates, they matter a lot more in terms of other cards caring about them.

Looking it over 4 is still the magic number when it comes to toughness.

The Gruul are the new Rakdos in the sense of they’re the ones who want to beat in your face early while everyone else wants to hang around.  Everyone else wants to hang around for a while and build themselves up. Boros are kinda midrange in that they wan to be attacking but their attacks are more surgical in nature in that you want to se up battalion triggers.

Combat tricks are also important in this set like they were in RTR due to removal being tricky to work with.

Contaminated Ground seems to be really freaking annoying to play against, like close to Stab Wound level annoying, only not as not good.

There’s a rogue subtheme in the set, which is just really freaking odd.

Its hard to say much about the set at this point but I’m honestly skeptical about how good it will be as a limited format for no other reason than gut instinct. Also I really just want to see how dragon’s Maze ties all of this together.

Next week, I read other people’s thoughts on the internet and mix them with my own to get a better idea of this set actually works.

*This is also the reason that I’ve soured on RTR, it doesn’t do what I feel a gold block should do I and I can still play m13 anyway.

Land, Land Everywhere, except when its not

Lands are one of the things that make Magic what it is. You need lands to play your spells and the main form of luck is in whether you get flooded/screwed on mana. While lands are the most boring part of Magic, they also guarantee that the game works.

What do I mean by lands are boring? Exactly that, lands aren’t spells, they don’t do cool things, they exist to let you do cool things. Which is why having the best art is important, you might as well have the versions that appeal to you. Leaving aside the lands that do more than that do in fact exist, they have a tendency of rare, which means that I usually don’t have any experience with them.* Lands annoy my inner Johnny and as a chronic result my Constructed decks tend to be short on lands. On the other hand fetchlands are awesome as they allow me to get more lands out of my deck, which means I’m more likely to draw spells and do cool things.

Of course lands being the way they are is very important, they’re the main way to have luck in the game. If you didn’t need lands then you could run all spells and run more spells which makes your deck consistent. Meaning that getting either mana screwed or mana flooded while being personally miserable is also good for he game as a whole. Pure skill in a game like Magic, where you are never just playing one game, but also the game of how you build your deck as well. I wasn’t playing Magic while Caw Blade was a thing but it sounds like an insufferable thing to play against but cool to watch two pros. Luck keeps the game accessible to newer players. So while  mana problems suck, they also make the game better. **

 

*Non basic lands should also have feasible land destruction for them and only them

**Tangent: people on mtgo who complain about the shuffler, that’s actual randomness at work, deal with it.

Return to Ravnica Draft no. 3

Well unfortunately my latest foray into the world of RTR limited was bad, lie really bad. I didn’t have all that much confidence in my deck and the signals felt like they were a mess. I ended up in U/W splashing red and went 1-2. I didn’t feel like my deck was all that good and it was about I expected to happen. I started out seeing if I could get some kind of azorious/bant defender deck going but that fell apart really fast. After that I felt like I was already committed and didn’t really try to change to adapt to what I was seeing. If nothing Looking over the draftcap I could’ve gotten a somewhat better Izzet deck, but that’s hard to say after the first pack due to the fact what I did affected what 7 others did.

Well this entire post and the draft that I’m talking would be a waste if I didn’t think about why it went wrong. Refusing to read the signals and not being as flexible as I could’ve been hurt. I have a desire to be the tempo deck and just win by playing more efficiently but that’s not always and I need to accept that. I also should do online draft simulations, while the bots aren’t the best it does help as a form of mental exercise and confidence booster.

Round 1 was just straight up Rakdos with nothing really flashy and I just grinded him out.

Round 2 was an Izzet aggro with Guttersipe playing a central role. I just crumbled to this.

Round 3 was a fairly stock selesnya deck, that had collective blessing which just blew me out. Never drew my keening apparition so I just died to it.

 

Here’s the draftcap:

Pack 1 pick 1:
Brushstrider
Seller of Songbirds
Crosstown Courier
Sewer Shambler
Launch Party
Electrickery
Rubbleback Rhino
Frostburn Weird
Counterflux
Island
Gore-House Chainwalker
Batterhorn
Common Bond
–> Azorius Justiciar
Rites of Reaping

Pack 1 pick 2:
Concordia Pegasus
Eyes in the Skies
Downsize
Inspiration
Vassal Soul
Trestle Troll
Rakdos Guildgate
Teleportal
Swamp
–> Doorkeeper
Traitorous Instinct
Axebane Guardian
Archweaver
Slitherhead

Pack 1 pick 3:
Electrickery
–> Gatecreeper Vine
Guttersnipe
Mountain
Voidwielder
Paralyzing Grasp
Mind Rot
Chorus of Might
Coursers’ Accord
Essence Backlash
Shrieking Affliction
Lobber Crew
Call of the Conclave

Pack 1 pick 4:
Trained Caracal
Keening Apparition
Inspiration
Survey the Wreckage
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Grisly Salvage
Dark Revenant
Swamp
–> Isperia’s Skywatch
Ogre Jailbreaker
Bloodfray Giant
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 5:
Tenement Crasher
Grim Roustabout
Deviant Glee
Survey the Wreckage
Trestle Troll
Azorius Guildgate
Treasured Find
Conjured Currency
Swamp
–> Stealer of Secrets
Axebane Stag

Pack 1 pick 6:
–> Aquus Steed
Crosstown Courier
Drainpipe Vermin
Cremate
Drudge Beetle
Rakdos Guildgate
Forest
Giant Growth
Racecourse Fury
Grave Betrayal

Pack 1 pick 7:
Korozda Monitor
Aerial Predation
Goblin Electromancer
Blistercoil Weird
Skull Rend
Plains
–> Knightly Valor
Bellows Lizard
Street Sweeper

Pack 1 pick 8:
Grim Roustabout
Goblin Electromancer
Vandalblast
Mountain
Knightly Valor
–> Stealer of Secrets
Pursuit of Flight
Druid’s Deliverance

Pack 1 pick 9:
–> Crosstown Courier
Sewer Shambler
Rubbleback Rhino
Counterflux
Island
Batterhorn
Rites of Reaping

Pack 1 pick 10:
–> Eyes in the Skies
Downsize
Inspiration
Trestle Troll
Swamp
Traitorous Instinct

Pack 1 pick 11:
Mountain
Mind Rot
–> Chorus of Might
Essence Backlash
Shrieking Affliction

Pack 1 pick 12:
–> Inspiration
Survey the Wreckage
Dark Revenant
Swamp

Pack 1 pick 13:
Survey the Wreckage
–> Conjured Currency
Swamp

Pack 1 pick 14:
Forest
–> Racecourse Fury

Pack 1 pick 15:
–> Plains

—— RTR ——

Pack 2 pick 1:
Rootborn Defenses
Mizzium Skin
Daggerdrome Imp
Launch Party
Dynacharge
Thrill-Kill Assassin
Lyev Skyknight
Plains
Explosive Impact
Stonefare Crocodile
Urban Burgeoning
Essence Backlash
Golgari Longlegs
Pyroconvergence
–> Righteous Authority

Pack 2 pick 2:
Keening Apparition
Avenging Arrow
Sewer Shambler
Terrus Wurm
Viashino Racketeer
Drudge Beetle
Seek the Horizon
Izzet Charm
Azorius Keyrune
Swamp
Doorkeeper
–> Hussar Patrol
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Search the City

Pack 2 pick 3:
Eyes in the Skies
Inspiration
Splatter Thug
–> Vassal Soul
Treasured Find
Perilous Shadow
Traitorous Instinct
Druid’s Deliverance
Chorus of Might
Transguild Promenade
Tavern Swindler
Nivix Guildmage
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 4:
Aquus Steed
Selesnya Sentry
Crosstown Courier
Terrus Wurm
Dynacharge
Chemister’s Trick
Rakdos Guildgate
Vandalblast
Pithing Needle
–> Voidwielder
Golgari Longlegs
Forest

Pack 2 pick 5:
Crosstown Courier
Electrickery
Grisly Salvage
Fall of the Gavel
Knightly Valor
Tower Drake
Centaur’s Herald
–> Hussar Patrol
Destroy the Evidence
Rites of Reaping
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 6:
Towering Indrik
Azorius Guildgate
Minotaur Aggressor
–> Azorius Charm
Dispel
Bellows Lizard
Pursuit of Flight
Horncaller’s Chant
Sundering Growth
Mountain

Pack 2 pick 7:
Downsize
Cremate
Viashino Racketeer
Electrickery
Rakdos Cackler
Forest
–> Paralyzing Grasp
Catacomb Slug
Axebane Stag

Pack 2 pick 8:
–> Swift Justice
Rubbleback Rhino
Skull Rend
Cancel
Batterhorn
Druid’s Deliverance
Oak Street Innkeeper
Island

Pack 2 pick 9:
–> Mizzium Skin
Daggerdrome Imp
Dynacharge
Plains
Stonefare Crocodile
Urban Burgeoning
Pyroconvergence

Pack 2 pick 10:
–> Keening Apparition
Terrus Wurm
Viashino Racketeer
Swamp
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Search the City

Pack 2 pick 11:
Treasured Find
–> Perilous Shadow
Chorus of Might
Tavern Swindler
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 12:
–> Crosstown Courier
Terrus Wurm
Chemister’s Trick
Forest

Pack 2 pick 13:
Destroy the Evidence
–> Rites of Reaping
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 14:
–> Pursuit of Flight
Mountain

Pack 2 pick 15:
–> Forest

—— RTR ——

Pack 3 pick 1:
–> Seller of Songbirds
Rootborn Defenses
Sewer Shambler
Assassin’s Strike
Rubbleback Rhino
Trestle Troll
Rakdos Cackler
Rest in Peace
Giant Growth
Ogre Jailbreaker
Batterhorn
Traitorous Instinct
Auger Spree
Savage Surge
Plains

Pack 3 pick 2:
Inspiration
Sewer Shambler
Viashino Racketeer
Drudge Beetle
Zanikev Locust
Rakdos Keyrune
–> Mizzium Mortars
Swamp
Forest (FOIL)
Cobblebrute
Traitorous Instinct
Druid’s Deliverance
Lobber Crew
Street Spasm

Pack 3 pick 3:
Tenement Crasher
Grim Roustabout
Terrus Wurm
Towering Indrik
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Azorius Guildgate
Golgari Guildgate
Syncopate
Plains
Stealer of Secrets
Dead Reveler (FOIL)
–> Dramatic Rescue
Gobbling Ooze

Pack 3 pick 4:
Drainpipe Vermin
Korozda Monitor
Selesnya Guildgate
Stab Wound
Teleportal
Mountain
Knightly Valor
Pursuit of Flight
Coursers’ Accord
Spawn of Rix Maadi
–> Rogue’s Passage
Ash Zealot

Pack 3 pick 5:
Downsize
Cremate
Launch Party
Viashino Racketeer
Thrill-Kill Assassin
Forest
Catacomb Slug
–> Explosive Impact
Axebane Stag
Coursers’ Accord (FOIL)
Guild Feud

Pack 3 pick 6:
Eyes in the Skies
Survey the Wreckage
Rubbleback Rhino
Island
Mind Rot
Cobblebrute
–> Explosive Impact
Axebane Guardian
Axebane Stag
Slime Molding

Pack 3 pick 7:
Drainpipe Vermin
Skull Rend
Giant Growth
Knightly Valor
–> Tower Drake
Pursuit of Flight
Destroy the Evidence
Rakdos Ragemutt
Mountain

Pack 3 pick 8:
Centaur Healer
–> Blustersquall
Island
Perilous Shadow
Chorus of Might
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Risen Sanctuary
Rogue’s Passage

Pack 3 pick 9:
Rubbleback Rhino
–> Trestle Troll
Giant Growth
Ogre Jailbreaker
Batterhorn
Traitorous Instinct
Plains

Pack 3 pick 10:
Sewer Shambler
Viashino Racketeer
–> Zanikev Locust
Swamp
Cobblebrute
Traitorous Instinct

Pack 3 pick 11:
Tenement Crasher
–> Grim Roustabout
Terrus Wurm
Plains
Gobbling Ooze

Pack 3 pick 12:
Drainpipe Vermin
Korozda Monitor
Mountain
–> Pursuit of Flight

Pack 3 pick 13:
Cremate
Forest
–> Catacomb Slug

Pack 3 pick 14:
Island
–> Axebane Stag

Pack 3 pick 15:
–> Mountain

MTG Standard Pauper: Izzet Control

 

 

A new season of standard means new decks all around. After playing against aggro/combo* a ton I decided to try my hand at control and see how well I would do. The main deck that you see above I used in this week’s MPDC(Monday Pauper Deck Challenge, check here for more info) and ended up going 2-2. The sideboard I did heavy retooling after the event and am still in the process of tweaking it.  Overall the deck is based on the idea of counter anything threatening, swing with my guys in an empty board and use instant speed draw to keep up my hand. Let’s break down the deck

1 drops

4x Delver of Secrets-this guy is still good, while not the focus of decks like he used to be, he’s still a threat.

2 drops

1x Wild Guess-Discard land when I can cast everything, get cards in exchange. Anymore than 1 of and it’s a pain to cast and not as useful.

3x Essence Scatter-Creatures are scary, creatures get countered

3x Negate-Removal, auras, token generators are all scary as well

4x Searing Spear– One of the default burn spells for every deck with red, this is no exception

4x Think Twice-One of the few ways to draw cars at instant speed, flashback also gives me more ways to use my mana

4x Goblin Electromancer-This card is awesome, reducing the cost of most of the cards in my deck means that I can do more with less and be more aggressive in playing out creatures

3 drops

4x Brimstone Volley-I prefer this over pillar of flame because that 1 extra point of damage is relevant more often than not and if I get lucky than morbid can kill anything or take away a 1/4 of my opponent’s life total

4x Cancel-It’s a universal hard counter, with an Electromancer in play it becomes Counterspell

2x Stealer of Secrets-I honestly have tested this compared to Scroll Thief mainly because 1. I already had 2 of this card and 2. it seems that the extra point of power is better than toughness. If this actually stays and connects i’m pleasantly surprised.

4 drops 

3x Essence Backlash-You have to win with creatures, this punishes you for trying to cast a creature spell. I haven’t tried rewind yet but that might be better here. I should also cut 1 of these for something else.

2x Inspiration-The other source of instant speed card draw.

Lands

6x Mountain

2x Izzet Guildgate

13x Island

1x Haunted Fengraf

Need more red sources, fengraf is just one of those cards that every standard pauper works in for good reason

Sideboard

3x Curse of the Pierced Heart– Adds inevitably to the game once you get into top deck wars and for those matches were nothing sticks

1x Essence Scatter-For aggro decks

2x Geistflame-Another source of removal, might be inferior to Electrickery

4x Inaction Injuction– Also for aggro decks and/or decks that aren’t hexproof based

1x Negate-For those decks with a lot of non creatures spells

4x Pillar of Flame– This is for matches were exiling the creature is very relevant: young wolf, loyal catharstitched drake

Overall thoughts: Counter magic is kinda terrible, especially at common; having access to Syncopate would be nice. Not having any sort of universal counter at 2 CMC like Mana Leak is problematic.  Playing this deck has been educational and fun so I’m probably going to keep it as my ‘main’ deck during this standard season in the sense of this is the deck I’ll keep refining and playing around with casually if not necessarily in events depending on the meta. Although once Gatecrash comes out I might jump ship to a Simic based deck.

*Not traditional combo but the basic idea of a combo deck is true

RTR draft no. 2

My second foray into the land of RTR limited went markedly worse then the first go around. most of this blame can be laid at the draft, where I felt like i was getting completely missed signals and ended up with a wishy washy Seleysna deck. Selesnya really works when you have a critical mass of cards for it and that just didn’t happen with this draft. Looking over the draftcap I could have tried to go more all in but it seems like the first two packs were really weak and my deck actually became playable with pack 3. I ended up 1-2 and winning at least 1 game each round

Round 1 was against a straight Azorious deck where I won form just being a good aggro deck. My two losses came from fairy imposter=azorious arrester two turns in a row. and the other game was because I was fillibustered, yes I lost to Azor Eloctur’s going off. In some ways it was a win more/win faster card if your opponent can’t get damage through. On the other hand,  if you can just stop your opponent and create a stalled out board then you can win. That card is good, its stats are good and the text is pure upside.

Round 2 was against the mirror where game 1 I just kept plopping out tokens and swing in for a billion. Games 2 and 3 I got manascrewed with hands of the nature this is great as long as I draw this one kind of land, by the time it happened I was dead or wasn’t going to happen for another four draw steps. Moral of the round: I need to get better at mulligans and that’s Magic; luck is an important part of the game. What matters is not letting it throw you off for the future games and just moving on.

Round 3 was Izzet aggro, if PTRTR* and and the rtr ars arcanum have shown anything is that it’s a real deck. Tokens+Skymark Roc(this card is nuts) got me a close game 1 and after I 3 for 1 his gore house chain walker with 2 pursuits of flight on it, he scooped. Izzet aggro is real thing.

*Cifka, who would go onto win the whole thing, drafted a low curve Izzet aggro deck and didn’t lose a match with it.

And here’s the draftcap

Pack 1 pick 1:
Avenging Arrow
Downsize
Daggerdrome Imp
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Seek the Horizon
Swamp
Doorkeeper
Bellows Lizard
Explosive Impact
Stonefare Crocodile
Dramatic Rescue
Auger Spree (FOIL)
Faerie Impostor
–> Call of the Conclave
Grave Betrayal

Pack 1 pick 2:
Armory Guard
Sewer Shambler
Deviant Glee
Viashino Racketeer
Drudge Beetle
Golgari Guildgate
Dark Revenant
Minotaur Aggressor
–> Lyev Skyknight
Pithing Needle (FOIL)
Island
Doorkeeper
Coursers’ Accord
Dramatic Rescue

Pack 1 pick 3:
Seller of Songbirds
Inspiration
Drudge Beetle
–> Golgari Keyrune
Mountain
Ethereal Armor
Doorkeeper
Mind Rot
Druid’s Deliverance
Sundering Growth
Tavern Swindler
Lobber Crew
Bloodfray Giant

Pack 1 pick 4:
Concordia Pegasus
Swift Justice
Drainpipe Vermin
Minotaur Aggressor
–> Dryad Militant
Forest
Isperia’s Skywatch
Chronic Flooding
Stonefare Crocodile
Psychic Spiral
Lobber Crew
Mana Bloom

Pack 1 pick 5:
Selesnya Sentry
Downsize
Cremate
Survey the Wreckage
–> Aerial Predation
Codex Shredder
Mountain
Chronic Flooding
Stonefare Crocodile
Transguild Promenade
Savage Surge

Pack 1 pick 6:
–> Keening Apparition
Armory Guard
Goblin Electromancer
Cancel
Pithing Needle
Plains
Bellows Lizard
Horncaller’s Chant
Sundering Growth
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 7:
Trained Caracal
Survey the Wreckage
–> Gatecreeper Vine
Aerial Predation
Vandalblast
Mountain
Sluiceway Scorpion
Heroes’ Reunion
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 8:
Crosstown Courier
Terrus Wurm
–> Golgari Guildgate
Cancel
Plains
Perilous Shadow
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Faerie Impostor (FOIL)

Pack 1 pick 9:
Downsize
Daggerdrome Imp
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Seek the Horizon
Swamp
Doorkeeper
–> Stonefare Crocodile

Pack 1 pick 10:
–> Armory Guard
Sewer Shambler
Deviant Glee
Drudge Beetle
Golgari Guildgate
Island

Pack 1 pick 11:
Mountain
Ethereal Armor
Mind Rot
Druid’s Deliverance
–> Sundering Growth

Pack 1 pick 12:
–> Swift Justice
Drainpipe Vermin
Forest
Chronic Flooding

Pack 1 pick 13:
–> Survey the Wreckage
Mountain
Chronic Flooding

Pack 1 pick 14:
–> Cancel
Plains

Pack 1 pick 15:
–> Mountain

—— RTR ——

Pack 2 pick 1:
Selesnya Sentry
Crosstown Courier
Downsize
Cremate
Viashino Racketeer
Electrickery
Tablet of the Guilds
Codex Shredder
Swamp
Explosive Impact
Druid’s Deliverance
Dramatic Rescue
–> Golgari Longlegs
Thoughtflare
Mercurial Chemister

Pack 2 pick 2:
Keening Apparition
Inaction Injunction
Electrickery
–> Centaur Healer
Grisly Salvage
Rakdos Charm
Civic Saber
Swamp (FOIL)
Forest
Gore-House Chainwalker
Stonefare Crocodile
Oak Street Innkeeper
Nivmagus Elemental
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 2 pick 3:
Tenement Crasher
Grim Roustabout
Launch Party
Assassin’s Strike
Towering Indrik
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Azorius Guildgate
–> Golgari Decoy
Plains
Catacomb Slug
Axebane Stag
Essence Backlash
Ash Zealot

Pack 2 pick 4:
Inspiration
Sewer Shambler
–> Drudge Beetle
Goblin Electromancer
Seek the Horizon
Fall of the Gavel
Mountain
Ethereal Armor
Doorkeeper
Cobblebrute
Traitorous Instinct
Druid’s Deliverance

Pack 2 pick 5:
Trained Caracal
Downsize
Cremate
Rakdos Guildgate
Guttersnipe
Treasured Find
Forest
–> Giant Growth
Chronic Flooding
Transguild Promenade
Shrieking Affliction

Pack 2 pick 6:
Trained Caracal
Inspiration
Gatecreeper Vine
Blustersquall (FOIL)
Syncopate
Swamp
Mind Rot
Urban Burgeoning
Auger Spree
–> Slitherhead

Pack 2 pick 7:
Selesnya Sentry
–> Armory Guard
Grisly Salvage
Rakdos Guildgate
Frostburn Weird
Cancel
Ogre Jailbreaker
Bellows Lizard
Plains

Pack 2 pick 8:
Drainpipe Vermin
–> Centaur Healer
Chemister’s Trick
Golgari Decoy
Codex Shredder
Forest
Giant Growth
Pursuit of Flight

Pack 2 pick 9:
Downsize
Cremate
Viashino Racketeer
Tablet of the Guilds
Codex Shredder
Swamp
–> Druid’s Deliverance

Pack 2 pick 10:
–> Grisly Salvage
Civic Saber
Forest
Gore-House Chainwalker
Oak Street Innkeeper
Nivmagus Elemental

Pack 2 pick 11:
Grim Roustabout
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Plains
–> Catacomb Slug
Axebane Stag

Pack 2 pick 12:
Goblin Electromancer
Fall of the Gavel
Mountain
–> Druid’s Deliverance

Pack 2 pick 13:
–> Cremate
Forest
Shrieking Affliction

Pack 2 pick 14:
Swamp
–> Urban Burgeoning

Pack 2 pick 15:
–> Plains

—— RTR ——

Pack 3 pick 1:
Tenement Crasher
Avenging Arrow
Terrus Wurm
Deviant Glee
Annihilating Fire
Korozda Monitor
Blistercoil Weird
Minotaur Aggressor
Wayfaring Temple
Trostani’s Judgment
Dead Reveler
Coursers’ Accord
Spawn of Rix Maadi
–> Skymark Roc
Mountain

Pack 3 pick 2:
Sunspire Griffin
Avenging Arrow
Grim Roustabout
Launch Party
Towering Indrik
Centaur Healer
–> Vitu-Ghazi Guildmage
Mountain
Perilous Shadow
Bellows Lizard
Essence Backlash
Psychic Spiral
Slitherhead
Growing Ranks

Pack 3 pick 3:
Brushstrider
Daggerdrome Imp
Vassal Soul
Rakdos Guildgate
Forest
Doorkeeper
Dispel
Pursuit of Flight
Stonefare Crocodile
Axebane Guardian
Horncaller’s Chant
Azorius Justiciar
–> Skymark Roc

Pack 3 pick 4:
–> Eyes in the Skies
Grisly Salvage
Dryad Militant
Dreg Mangler
Swamp
Ethereal Armor
Paralyzing Grasp
Traitorous Instinct
Chorus of Might
Transguild Promenade
Street Sweeper
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 3 pick 5:
Azorius Arrester
Keening Apparition
Inspiration
–> Rubbleback Rhino
Skull Rend
Rakdos Charm
Tablet of the Guilds
Mountain
Ethereal Armor
Isperia’s Skywatch
Druid’s Deliverance

Pack 3 pick 6:
Drainpipe Vermin
Vandalblast
–> Selesnya Keyrune
Forest
Giant Growth
Trostani’s Judgment
Runewing
Perilous Shadow
Coursers’ Accord
Dramatic Rescue

Pack 3 pick 7:
Rootborn Defenses
Deviant Glee
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Golgari Guildgate
Treasured Find
Island
Dispel
–> Common Bond
Shrieking Affliction

Pack 3 pick 8:
Cremate
Survey the Wreckage
Aerial Predation
Chemister’s Trick
Blustersquall
Mountain
Chronic Flooding
–> Coursers’ Accord

Pack 3 pick 9:
Tenement Crasher
Avenging Arrow
Terrus Wurm
Deviant Glee
–> Coursers’ Accord
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Mountain

Pack 3 pick 10:
–> Avenging Arrow
Grim Roustabout
Launch Party
Mountain
Psychic Spiral
Slitherhead

Pack 3 pick 11:
Daggerdrome Imp
Forest
Dispel
Stonefare Crocodile
–> Horncaller’s Chant

Pack 3 pick 12:
Grisly Salvage
–> Dryad Militant
Swamp
Street Sweeper

Pack 3 pick 13:
–> Tablet of the Guilds
Mountain
Ethereal Armor

Pack 3 pick 14:
–> Drainpipe Vermin
Forest

Pack 3 pick 15:
–> Island

Return to Ravnica Draft no. 1

Return to Ravnica is out on MTGO and the prerelease system isn’t usurious anymore! So I decided to liquidate whatever I had from M13 and hop into a draft queue. the results weren’t bad as I went 2-1. First let’s take a look at the format in general before we get into this draft in particular though.

RTR is fun, the drafting is fun, and so are the games. However the nature of the set means that there’s only so many ways you can approach the set. It’s a lot more conventional in terms of colors, with the guilds serving as the natural focal point for color combos. The format is also challenging very much its own thing, not focusing on the core points of Magic like a core set. There’s a lot of expectations on Sinker to tie it together. After all triple Rav was considered to be fun, but it’s RGD that people rave about.

Rakdos and Selesnya are the most interesting in the sense that most people think they’re the best decks but they seem balanced by the fact if you don’t get enough of the cards then they are not going to work all well. As the format grows there’ll be a better idea about how it works and what are the best archetypes but the big thing is that it seems to have avoided AVR with a gross color imbalance and an inability to respond to your opponents. It was fun once, I’ll have to do it more and give it time to see how it holds up.

The actual draft:

I started in Rakdos and doubled down on it, the results were…less then stellar. Maybe this was a result of lack of skill or reading signals poorly. It wasn’t the sort of explosive aggro deck that you would expect but more of a bad midrange deck I guess. Daggerdome Imp does a good amount of work due to lifelink. Stab Wound is a beating but 1.Golgari wants it more and 2. I got greedy and didn’t see it so much as a removal spell but more as a repeatable source of life loss; the -2/-2 is a a tricky number to manage. Grim Roustabout is awesome, most of the unleash guys are and are some of the best commons/uncommons in terms of creatures. Deviant Glee is also what the Rakdos deck wants.

Looking over the draftcap, I probably could have gone Izzet and been the better for it, but Rakdos was more of a known quantity to me. Also gold cards with guildgates being hte main form of fixing means that it is hard to jump ship, conventional drafting of don’t over commit to a color still holds.

Game 1 I don’t remember except I won because the game went to time and my opponent was playing slowly/had serious lag problems.

Game 2 was up against a good Selesnya deck that was able to pump out more tokens then I could deal with and I died in quick order.

Game 3 was up against an Izzet deck splashing black  where I got lucky and was able to rely upon better creatures.

Here’s the draftcap:

—— RTR ——

Pack 1 pick 1:
Azorius Arrester
Eyes in the Skies
Daggerdrome Imp
Gatecreeper Vine
Goblin Electromancer
Skull Rend
Dark Revenant
Azorius Charm
–> Rakdos Cackler
Forest
Isperia’s Skywatch
Traitorous Instinct
Chorus of Might
Mercurial Chemister
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 2:
Mizzium Skin
Dynacharge
Goblin Electromancer
Grisly Salvage
Azorius Guildgate
Fencing Ace
Mountain
Ethereal Armor
Trostani’s Judgment
Tower Drake
Paralyzing Grasp
Dead Reveler
Faerie Impostor
–> Bloodfray Giant

Pack 1 pick 3:
Swift Justice
Daggerdrome Imp
Golgari Guildgate
Frostburn Weird
Treasured Find
Cancel
Mountain
Cobblebrute (FOIL)
Common Bond
–> Lobber Crew
Archweaver
Grave Betrayal
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 4:
Concordia Pegasus
Eyes in the Skies
Mizzium Skin
Downsize
Cremate
Aerial Predation
Rakdos Ringleader
Forest
Catacomb Slug
Batterhorn
–> Spawn of Rix Maadi
Guild Feud

Pack 1 pick 5:
Rootborn Defenses
Assassin’s Strike
–> Annihilating Fire
Search Warrant
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Mountain
Dispel
Perilous Shadow
Racecourse Fury
Traitorous Instinct
Centaur’s Herald

Pack 1 pick 6:
Aquus Steed
Launch Party
Bellows Lizard
–> Gore-House Chainwalker
Cobblebrute
Tavern Swindler
Destroy the Evidence
Jarad’s Orders
Izzet Guildgate
Plains

Pack 1 pick 7:
Trained Caracal
Inspiration
–> Skull Rend
Selesnya Guildgate
Tablet of the Guilds
Golgari Keyrune
Plains
Urban Burgeoning
Coursers’ Accord

Pack 1 pick 8:
Tenement Crasher
Inspiration
Skull Rend
Plains
Ethereal Armor
–> Perilous Shadow
Druid’s Deliverance
Gobbling Ooze

Pack 1 pick 9:
–> Daggerdrome Imp
Goblin Electromancer
Skull Rend
Forest
Traitorous Instinct
Chorus of Might
Izzet Guildgate

Pack 1 pick 10:
Mizzium Skin
–> Dynacharge
Goblin Electromancer
Grisly Salvage
Mountain
Ethereal Armor

Pack 1 pick 11:
–> Daggerdrome Imp
Treasured Find
Mountain
Cobblebrute (FOIL)
Grave Betrayal

Pack 1 pick 12:
Cremate
Forest
Catacomb Slug
–> Batterhorn

Pack 1 pick 13:
Search Warrant
Mountain
–> Racecourse Fury

Pack 1 pick 14:
–> Destroy the Evidence
Plains

Pack 1 pick 15:
–> Plains

—— RTR ——

Pack 2 pick 1:
Brushstrider
Avenging Arrow
Inaction Injunction
Terrus Wurm
–> Deviant Glee
Survey the Wreckage
Drudge Beetle
Rakdos Guildgate
Phantom General
Selesnya Keyrune
Plains
Axebane Stag
Coursers’ Accord
Essence Backlash
Cryptborn Horror

Pack 2 pick 2:
Eyes in the Skies
Selesnya Sentry
Rubbleback Rhino
Vassal Soul
Seek the Horizon
Izzet Charm
Forest
Voidwielder
–> Ogre Jailbreaker
Batterhorn
Traitorous Instinct
Chorus of Might
Transguild Promenade
Risen Sanctuary

Pack 2 pick 3:
Tenement Crasher
Sunspire Griffin
Crosstown Courier
–> Grim Roustabout
Terrus Wurm
Dynacharge
Chemister’s Trick
Thrill-Kill Assassin
Trostani’s Judgment
Tower Drake
Slitherhead
Nivix Guildmage
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 4:
Rootborn Defenses
Launch Party
Towering Indrik
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Rakdos Charm
–> Carnival Hellsteed
Swamp
Catacomb Slug
Axebane Stag
Urban Burgeoning
Sundering Growth
Pyroconvergence

Pack 2 pick 5:
Avenging Arrow
Terrus Wurm
Deviant Glee
Drudge Beetle
Centaur Healer
Search Warrant
–> Rakdos Guildgate
Plains
Batterhorn
Faerie Impostor
Slum Reaper

Pack 2 pick 6:
Armory Guard
Deviant Glee
Gatecreeper Vine
Chemister’s Trick
Golgari Guildgate
Selesnya Charm
Forest
Voidwielder
Mind Rot
–> Sluiceway Scorpion

Pack 2 pick 7:
Inspiration
Selesnya Guildgate
Syncopate
Dryad Militant
Ethereal Armor
–> Dead Reveler
Cobblebrute
Druid’s Deliverance
Plains

Pack 2 pick 8:
Tenement Crasher
–> Grim Roustabout
Azorius Guildgate
Vandalblast
Island
Dispel
Pursuit of Flight
Horncaller’s Chant

Pack 2 pick 9:
Brushstrider
Inaction Injunction
Terrus Wurm
Survey the Wreckage
–> Rakdos Guildgate
Plains
Axebane Stag

Pack 2 pick 10:
Selesnya Sentry
Seek the Horizon
Forest
–> Traitorous Instinct
Chorus of Might
Risen Sanctuary

Pack 2 pick 11:
Tenement Crasher
–> Terrus Wurm
Dynacharge
Chemister’s Trick
Swamp

Pack 2 pick 12:
–> Rootborn Defenses
Swamp
Catacomb Slug
Urban Burgeoning

Pack 2 pick 13:
–> Terrus Wurm
Search Warrant
Plains

Pack 2 pick 14:
–> Deviant Glee
Forest

Pack 2 pick 15:
–> Plains

—— RTR ——

Pack 3 pick 1:
Sunspire Griffin
Swift Justice
Drainpipe Vermin
Grim Roustabout
Towering Indrik
Blistercoil Weird
Swamp
Runewing
Perilous Shadow
Horncaller’s Chant
Sundering Growth
–> Goblin Rally
Search the City
Skymark Roc
Mountain (FOIL)

Pack 3 pick 2:
Crosstown Courier
Terrus Wurm
Splatter Thug
Dynacharge
Korozda Monitor
Search Warrant
Selesnya Guildgate
Zanikev Locust
–> Stab Wound
Swamp
Stealer of Secrets
Auger Spree
Call of the Conclave
Slitherhead

Pack 3 pick 3:
Selesnya Sentry
Rootborn Defenses
–> Launch Party
Phantom General
Seek the Horizon
Fall of the Gavel
Pithing Needle
Swamp
Ogre Jailbreaker
Catacomb Slug
Batterhorn
Axebane Stag
Essence Backlash

Pack 3 pick 4:
Azorius Arrester
Avenging Arrow
Launch Party
Rubbleback Rhino
Judge’s Familiar
–> Rakdos Keyrune
Plains
Mind Rot
Bellows Lizard
Axebane Guardian
Spawn of Rix Maadi
Savage Surge

Pack 3 pick 5:
Swift Justice
Drainpipe Vermin
Survey the Wreckage
Aerial Predation
–> Trestle Troll
Island
Chronic Flooding
Destroy the Evidence
Savage Surge
Risen Sanctuary
Wild Beastmaster

Pack 3 pick 6:
Electrickery
Rakdos Shred-Freak
Grisly Salvage
Azorius Guildgate
–> Stab Wound
Guttersnipe
Izzet Keyrune
Island
Paralyzing Grasp
Chorus of Might

Pack 3 pick 7:
Selesnya Sentry
Cremate
Viashino Racketeer
Survey the Wreckage
–> Aerial Predation
Island
Chronic Flooding
Sphere of Safety
Tavern Swindler

Pack 3 pick 8:
Crosstown Courier
–> Electrickery
Selesnya Guildgate
Codex Shredder
Druid’s Deliverance
Essence Backlash
Golgari Longlegs
Forest

Pack 3 pick 9:
Drainpipe Vermin
–> Towering Indrik
Blistercoil Weird
Swamp
Horncaller’s Chant
Sundering Growth
Mountain (FOIL)

Pack 3 pick 10:
Terrus Wurm
–> Splatter Thug
Dynacharge
Search Warrant
Zanikev Locust
Swamp

Pack 3 pick 11:
Seek the Horizon
Swamp
Catacomb Slug
–> Batterhorn
Axebane Stag

Pack 3 pick 12:
Plains
Mind Rot
Bellows Lizard
–> Spawn of Rix Maadi

Pack 3 pick 13:
Island
Chronic Flooding
–> Destroy the Evidence

Pack 3 pick 14:
Island
–> Chorus of Might

Pack 3 pick 15:
–> Island

Why I like building bad decks

Playing Standard Pauper and Classic Pauper on MTGO has the advantage of the cards are cheap for the most part* which makes building new decks easy.  As a result, it’s rather easy to make decks and play them casually. the thing is that the decks I build are bad, I know that they’re bad and I still use them anyway for two main reasons.

First, netdecks are boring, I don’t learn anything, or rather what I do learn is smaller in comparison. Netdecks don’t help me grow as a player.  I will take netdecks and modify them though, but I hate copying a list card for card. using a netdeck just feels like I’m looking at the back of a book for the answer instead of figuring it out myself. in this case, the question being, ‘what’s a good deck in this meta’ or alternative ‘ what kind of deck can I make to do this thing or with this card?’**

Second, I do actually learn more about the game, toying around with a junk simic ramp deck has given me a better idea about how ramp decks work in general. Or rather are supposed to work at least.  By doing this in primarily standard pauper(the fact that WoTC has made it a supported format means it’s so much easier to find games now)  it enables me to have access to the entire card pool with ease. I highly recommend standard pauper as an entry point to new players as its a great learning tool.

I don’t make bad decks cause they’re bad, I make bad decks cause I don’t know how to make good decks and I figure that as is true in many games, I ‘ll understand it more by playing then just theorizing.  So far, this seems to be true, I just have to keep at it.

 

*Standard pauper is incredibly cheap and the expensive cards in classic pauper aren’t auto includes in every deck, limits your options but still allows you to do things.

**Anyone have some idea for standard pauper that involve Gnaw to the Bone? The only ones I could think of have uncommons as being key pieces.