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Cobra
Posted: Fri May 12, 2006 8:27 pm
Joined: 12 Jul 2005 Posts: 1202 Location: Austin, TX, USA
Hey all, I just joined an MTG Online sealed deck league to get a feel for the format, and I thought Iíd post my pulls here -- get some input on my deck to start off with, and then maybe generate some longer-term discussion about the format with game reports and such. Cool

So, my opening card pool looks like this...

White:
Auratouched Mage
Bathe in Light
Benediction of Moons
Droning Bureaucrats
Ghost Warden
Guardianís Magemark
Leave No Trace
Nightguard Patrol
Shrieking Grotesque
Veteran Armorer

Blue:
Drake Familiar
Flight of Fancy
Frazzle
Lore Broker
Quickchange
Runeboggle
Stasis Cell
Steamcore Weird
Tattered Drake
Vedalken Dismisser

Black:
Clinging Darkness
Daggerclaw Imp
Infectious Host
Last Gasp
Orzhov Euthanist
Poisonbelly Ogre
Poisonbelly Ogre
Roofstalker Wight
Strands of Undeath

Red:
Barbarian Riftcutter
Cleansing Beam
Fencerís Magemark
Galvanic Arc
Ghor-Clan Bloodscale
Incite Hysteria
Molten Sentry
Pyromatics
Rain of Embers
Seismic Spike
Sparkmage Apprentice
Viashino Fangtail
Viashino Slasher

Green:
Battering Wurm
Beastmasterís Magemark
Elves of Deep Shadow
Elvish Skysweeper
Gather Courage
Gruul Nodorog
Ivy Dancer
Moldervine Cloak
Silhana Ledgewalker
Silhana Starfletcher
Stone-Seeder Hierophant
Ursapine

WhiteBlueBlackRedGreen:
Boros Recruit
Castigate
Consult the Necrosages
Drooling Groodion
Dune-Brood Nephilim
Glimpse the Unthinkable
Invoke the Firemind
Leap of Flame
Pillory of the Sleepless
Schismotivate
Seeds of Strength
Sunhome Enforcer
Thundersong Trumpeter
Wee Dragonauts
Wild Cantor

Artifacts:
Grifterís Blade
Izzet Signet
Spectral Searchlight

Guild Lands:
Golgari Rot Farm
Orzhov Basilica
Selesnya Sanctuary

Now, my first few thoughts are "I love Moldervine Cloak," "I hate Pillory of the Sleepless," and "Three overlapping bounce lands, nifty." So I go for WhiteBlackGreen. I also end up with a small red splash because there are a few nice cards there, and with the Starfletcher and Searchlight I think I can include them without destabilizing mana base too much.

Also, I decide to lean towards evasion creatures for that Moldervine Cloak, and since Iíve got a lot of help with mana generation (3 guild lands, Elves of Deep Shadow, Silhana Starfletcher, Spectral Searchlight) I drop the land count to 16.

Hereís my initial build:

Creatures (15):
1White Ghost Warden
1White Veteran Armorer
2White Nightguard Patrol
2White Shrieking Grotesque
3White Droning Bureaucrats
5White Auratouched Mage
2Black Daggerclaw Imp
Green Elves of Deep Shadow
Green Elvish Skysweeper
1Green Silhana Ledgewalker
2Green Silhana Starfletcher
3GreenGreen Ursapine
6Green Battering Wurm
RedWhite Thundersong Trumpeter
2RedWhite Sunhome Enforcer

Other Spells (9):
1Black Last Gasp
1Black Clinging Darkness
3Black Strands of Undeath
2Red Galvanic Arc
2Green Moldervine Cloak
WhiteBlack Castigate
GreenWhite Seeds of Strength
1WhiteBlack Pillory of the Sleepless
3 Spectral Searchlight

Land (16):
Golgari Rot Farm
Orzhov Basilica
Selesnya Sanctuary
5 Forest
4 Plains
2 Swamp
2 Mountain

Thoughts? Very Happy
Last edited by Cobra on Sat May 13, 2006 4:55 pm; edited 3 times in totalhttp://cobracards.com -- Web's best deals on Trading Card Games.
La_Sin_Grail
Posted: Fri May 12, 2006 10:43 pm
Joined: 14 Aug 2005 Posts: 806 Location: Maryland
The cards I see as worth considering when choosing colors are:

Auratouched Mage
Shreiking Grotesque
Veteran Armorer
Flight of Fancy
Stasis Cell
Steamcore Wierd
Tattered Drake
Daggerclaw Imp
Lasp Gasp
Strands of Undeath
Galvanic Arc
Pyromatics
Viashino Fangtail
Fencerís Magemark
Beastmasterís Magemark
Moldervine Cloak
Gather Courage
Ursapine
Drooling Groodion
Pillory of the Sleepless
Boros Recruit
Sunhome Enforcer
Wee Dragonauts

Signet
Bouncelands

From there I would say to go G/R/B because you have ursapine as a win condition, and cloak or groodion for backup.

I would end up with something like this.

Daggerclaw Imp for evasion and 3 mana for 3 beater
Last Gasp incredible removal
Strands of Undeath card adv. and protect enchanted creatures
Galvanic Arc so good
Pyromatics token/spot removal
Fencerís Magemark great with saving creatures
Beastmasterís Magemark enchantment power
Moldervine Cloak Rigged
Gather Courage nice combat trick- use as removal or shock for free
Ursapine win condition
Drooling Groodion win condition
Vaishino Fangtail Ping owns in limited.
Battering Wurm Big things with evasion are fun to cloak or magemark
Elves of Deep Shadow mana fix/one drop
Elvish Skysweeper own the skies
Orzhov Euthanist Kill things after pyromatics or combat and ok body
Silhana Ledgewalker untargetable by them with evasion.
Wild Cantor Mana fix/1 for 1/1
Grifterís Blade crazy trick, equipment is good in limited
Spectral Searchlight ping or mana fix
Ivy Dancer make things unblockable
Silhana Starfletcher blocker/mana fixer
Seismic Spike blow up opposing karoos for HUGE tempo burst


6 Forest
6 Mountain
4 Swamp <<not much black
Golgari Rot Farm

Hope that helped Conor. Remember to never base colors off a single card unless itís an auto-win and even then be careful. Green is for cloak AND ursapine. BLack is for imp AND gasp. Red is for Arc AND fangtail.

One last thing, Iíve never seen a deck win with four colors in limited. Iíve seen two five-color ones from local tourneys to GP Richmond that were good. Try to stick with three, and if not, go for the gold!
Cobra
Posted: Sat May 13, 2006 10:26 am
Joined: 12 Jul 2005 Posts: 1202 Location: Austin, TX, USA
Thanks, LSG! Cool

I like your build better in terms of overall card quality, but wonít the creature count (only 12) be a problem? I seem to get a lot of dead hands (like enchantments without a decent creature to hold them) when I play fewer than 15 or so. White allows for more creatures, and includes better options for using that Moldervine Cloak and Beastmasterís Magemark, than Red.

Also, I definitely like the potential of Seismic Spike and Ivy Dancer, but they seem more like sideboard cards... do you think this format has enough guildlands and forests to justify maindecking them?

-- Cobra
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La_Sin_Grail
Posted: Sat May 13, 2006 1:16 pm
Joined: 14 Aug 2005 Posts: 806 Location: Maryland
Iím pretty sure spike should just be in- even if they donít have any karoos (bouncelands), theyíll probably only have one source of a color. As for Ivy Dancer, I like him because green is a definate power color in sealed. Many decks play green, and at three colors on average, even if it were all equal ivy would be great more than half the time.

I know twelve creatures isnít much, but many of them cost little mana, allowing enchantments to have plenty of targets fast. Also, with things like grifterís blade and moldervine cloak, each creature will be a big one.

Iím really stupid and tried to run some obscenely low number of creatures at GP Richmond (I like didnít notice how few there were)... I think I ran 5-6, and I placed 196th of 561, so Iím not too worried about low creature counts.
Cobra
Posted: Sat May 13, 2006 1:43 pm
Joined: 12 Jul 2005 Posts: 1202 Location: Austin, TX, USA
Two more questions to help further my MTG education... Wink

1) How did you arrive at your land counts? (I would probably have run one less Mountain and/or Swamp, and another Forest or two, but Iím a little shaky when it comes to building the mana base...)

2) Where does the term "karoos" come from? Laughing
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La_Sin_Grail
Posted: Sat May 13, 2006 5:14 pm
Joined: 14 Aug 2005 Posts: 806 Location: Maryland
Hm.... Karoos come from... I donít even remember. Itís the most common term, perhaps second to bounceland for describing things like Golgari Rot Farm.

As for land counts, I said there wasnít much black needed. Then I said green was more than red. Usually, you want about 17 lands in limited, so it just all fell into place. Plus, with starfletcher and Rot farm and searclight AND elves of DS, there should be very few mana problems in this deck.
Cobra
Posted: Wed May 17, 2006 9:56 am
Joined: 12 Jul 2005 Posts: 1202 Location: Austin, TX, USA
All right, first week of the league I played three games using La_Sin_Grailís suggested RedGreenBlack deck, only slightly modified, and went 1-2. Crying or Very sad The losses were the result of slow starts, following by my opponent dropping Wurms and other big creatures that I simply didnít have answers for.

Because of all those big creatures I was seeing, I decided to try my original version -- it doesnít have the red burn/ping thatís so useful against small creatures, but it does have a bit more discard and a Pillory of the Sleepless for larger creatures. (And itís faster to the table, which is good if you feel that other decks outclass yours in the long run and you need to play aggro to win!)

So in the next two games, with WhiteGreenBlack, I went 1-1. Both good matches... didnít see so many big creatures, and in fact I find myself really missing Pyromatics and Viashino Fangtail.

I get to add a Ravnica pack to my card pool this week, and it looks like this:

Blue:
Grozoth

Black:
Clinging Darkness
Mortipede
Vindictive Mob

Red:
Blockbuster
Dogpile
Ordruun Commando
Seismic Spike
Viashino Fangtail

Green:
Bramble Elemental
Elvish Skysweeper

WhiteBlueBlackRedGreen:
Boros Recruit
Seeds of Strength
Twisted Justice

Land:
Selesnya Sanctuary


Grozoth? Ugh. Mad But there are some playable creatures in here, and now Iíve got two Fangtails Dancing and two Seismic Spikes, so Iím definitely sticking with Red.
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Glavin
Posted: Mon May 22, 2006 3:05 pm
Joined: 22 May 2006 Posts: 11 Location:
I agree with your build of BWGr, but there are some changes I would make. Cleansing Beam is a gamebreaking card. You donít have any saprolings or anything, so it will usually not kill that many of your own creatures, and it can randomly completely turn games around. I also think that you made a mistake about not including Bathe in Light in your build, as it is a very strong card that can break stalls, save your creatures, or make combat a bloodbath. You can splash if you want, as you have a lot of good fixing.

Anyways, I would go BWGr with your current pool. My build would probably be something like


1 Auratouched Mage
1 Veteran Armorer
1 Shrieking Grotesque
1 Ursapine
1 Drooling Groodion
1 Bramble Elemental
1 Silhana Ledgewalker
1 Elves of Deep Shadow
1 Orzhov Euthanist
1 Battering Wurm
1 Silhana Starfletcher
1 Daggerclaw Imp
1 Gruul Nodorog
1 Wild Cantor
1 Sunhome Enforcer
1 Ivy Dancer
1 Last Gasp
1 Bath in Light
1 Spectral Searchlight
1 Cleansing Beam
1 Moldervine Cloak
1 Galvanic Arc
1 Pillory of the Sleepless
1 Strands of Undeath
2 Selesnya Sanctuary
1 Orzhov Basillica
1 Golgari Rot Farm
2 Mountain
3 Swamp
4 Forest
3 Plains

Ivy Dancer is perfectly acceptable to main deck in Sealed, as green is the most solid color, and is the most played color. Seismic Spike is really a terrible card in most formats. If you are really scraping for a LD card, then Barbarian Riftcutter is much better, providing a solid body if there is no land you want to destroy. LD is rarely a solid strategy in limited. I would normally stear clear. Otherwise, this looks like a pretty solid pool.
Cobra
Posted: Tue May 23, 2006 4:57 am
Joined: 12 Jul 2005 Posts: 1202 Location: Austin, TX, USA
Iíve actually become rather fond of the three-color BlackRedGreen version, because the mana base is just so solid, and because those Fangtails really are extremely good in Limited-format MTG games. Adding that extra color seemed to destabilize things without providing too many additional benefits.

I do like Cleansing Beam quite a lot, but consider it a sideboard option for when my opponent is playing mostly different colors than I am (or is creating a bunch of Saprolings or something).

Ivy Dancer got taken out of my current version for some reason, but needs to be added back in. Rolling Eyes

Iíve actually had some very good results with the land destruction. Since everyoneís playing three colors or more, peopleís mana bases are a little bit fragile. Itís pretty easy to deprive people of one of their colors (or at the very least, of double mana in one of their colors), and that means theyíll be holding some useless cards for a while. Plus, there have been several games where an early Spike has turned my opponentís perfectly good hand into a mana-screw situation. Thatís always fun... Twisted Evil

I do agree that Barbarian Riftcutter might be a better choice than Seismic Spike, though. Heís slower, which is obviously a significant downside for land-destruction cards, but heís also much more versatile. And he doesnít burn you. Laughing Iíll have to give him a try.
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La_Sin_Grail
Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2006 10:41 pm
Joined: 14 Aug 2005 Posts: 806 Location: Maryland
Also, in limited, the only format slow enough to play cleansing beam, the problem is youíll have overlap between colors and all theri creatures wonít be the same color necessarily. However, two fangtails owns Very Happy

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