Yup, it’s been a longtime since I last did a tournament report. Then again it’s been a long time since I felt like doing one. I mean it’s just dull to tell people about the top decks that they already know and see played to death week after week. I think that is part of the reason why everyone at Eagle Hill was so happy to draft last Friday night.
Now this wasn’t just a normal draft with three packs of the most current set, nope, this was a chaos draft. For those that don’t know; a chaos draft is when everyone picks from any set in the display case to make up the tree packs they will bring to the pods. The sets that were on hand for us to pick from were:
Mirrodin Besieged - The cool thing about having this in the mix was that it allowed infect to be a role player Also it made Artifact hate better when it is normally janky in Draft. I was sitting between two players that had picked a total of five of these packs between them.
M12 - Bloodthirst is a cool mechanic for Limited but I think it was more Lightning Bolt and Mana Leak that were drawing players to these packs.
Innistrad - I feel this was the pack to pick if you were looking for Snapcasters, but it’s the fight and curse mechanics that would also make this a good pick.
Dark Ascension - I think the fact that this set was where Undying lived made this the better set to pick so that you got more legs out of your creatures.
Avasyn Restored - Miracle, Undying, and flickering makes this the best pick out of the Innistrad block.
Return to Ravnica - Okay, so if you cracked Pack Rat out of this in Limited and get it on the table you just win once you start making the copies. Also you have some money cards. Triple RtR was on my mind but it felt like buying lotto tickets hoping to land a good bomb in pack one.
Gatecrash - I just want to skip over this. Too many lame-duck cards in the set that I just didn’t want to risk getting a pack of junk. Okay, so Nightveil Specter and Burning-Tree Emissary are in this, but I’m not liking how the guilds in the set tempt you into drafting a subpar deck.
Dragon’s Maze - This was the set I was leaning towards most for taking my three packs of when I walked in the door. The reason is that they replaced the basic land slot with the guildgates and shock lands. With a one-in-eight chance of cracking a shock I was thinking that it would be the safe packs to take if I was rare drafting
M14 - Mutavault is currently the highest priced card in Standard. Also, if you crack a rare sliver you can be sure that the other slivers are going to rotate around the table as people pass them over because their aren’t enough of them to make a critical mass of a deck. This is also the down side of hoping for slivers.
Theros - This set’s name should have been #yoloswagmoney @Blue/Black. I would approve of anyone taking three of these and hoping to cash in on the money rares of the new set. Also the Ordeals are totally nuts with Infect creatures.
So what set did I take. I went all in on M14 hoping foolishly to cash in on either a money rare or drafting the over looked slivers. Also I need over 130 Shadowborn Apostles for a Modern deck. Here’s the list of what I ran.
I’m a fan of going three colors in Limited. The reason is that you get to play a greater range of removal and creatures. While I normally only go three color in sealed I find that in Chaos draft it works as well because you need to spread youseld out and be willing to jump on the bombs and removal that others pass over.
Arena Athlete - With a few enchantments and combat tricks in the deck I like having this to get more bang out of those cards.
Garruk’s Companion - Just a nice beater that can get better with tricks.
Gladecover Scout - Hexproof is awesome with my enchantments and this allows me to toss out a chump blocker that isn’t going to die until I want it to.
Gobbling Ooze - This was a bomb with my chump blockers. I mean the dude is just going to die and not kill the attacker, so why not let my ooze eat it so it can deal more damage?
Gore-house Chainwalker - I found this to be a workhorse in combat when I unleashed it on turn two and then just kept attacking until my opponent developed there boards.
Korozda Gorgon - I love removal on a dude. Seeing how I have a number of ways to put counters on my dudes this was a card I could build around.
Koth’s Courier - I think that land walking is an overlooked ability in Limited. Once you drop a pump enchantment or some +1/+1 counters on this it quickly becomes a clock they have to answer.
Legion Loyalist - I just want to say thank you to whoever cracked this and let it get to me. I won a number of games off the back of this little guy and an army of dorks.
Loathsome Catoblepas - Awesome effects on this Limited dork. Force their dudes to block it just so you can use the dies ability to kill another dork.
Phyrexian Rager - This was a windmill slam for me in the draft. Being able to drop this turn three is totally the dream. The trade off of getting a 2/2 body and an extra card is wroth the lose of life.
Sewer Shambler - I used this more as a pump spell for my Legion Loyalist by sacrificing it to Gobbling Ooze then Scavenging it onto the goblin. Then again it also worked by using it’s Swampwalk to eat some life out of opponents also in the black camp.
Towering Indrik - Took this late because I needed the extra body and something with reach.
Trestle Troll - Reach and regen made this an early pick for me. I’m a huge fan of this in Limited so I can have a ready blocker every turn.
Viridian Corrupter - Another snap pick for me. With five Mirrodin packs in my pod taking this was a surefire way to have some removal. Also I won two matches on the back of this dude dealing ten infect with some pumps.
Young Pyromancer - Took this as both an extra dude and because it helps me get there with tokens. The fact that it has a big target on it’s head means it will eat removal that I don’t want my other dudes to eat.
Burn the Impure - Infect dudes were in the pod so taking this for a removal spell was a great idea so I could get the extra three damage at times. In the end three damage is always awesome for burn based removal in Limited.
Drown in Filth - Took this before I moved into red and setting myself on playing Jund. I like it as a removal spell for the early game. This gets even better when you have opponents that have gone into the Mill and discard battle plan.
Mind Rot - I can’t help taking these because I love playing the attrition game in Limited. The fact that these tend to go late mean I can snag them after getting dorks and removal. That is unless you have a buddy that is snagging them up before the pack gets back to you. Yeah, Kris, I’m talking about you. Taking all my discard spells so I can’t be a jerk with them.
Ordeal of Purphoros - Hands down the best of the Ordeal cycle. This plus Corrupter was so G to the G tech.
Shiv’s Embrace - It was my plan to drop this on Corrupter and sail to victory, but that plan changed with Ordeal being the one to come together in the games. Still this allowed me to build a flier that needed answers which a number of opponent’s managed to do. Shiv’s Embrace seemed to be more a death sentence to the enchanted creature instead of my opponents. Granted that was good, because it meant that other creatures would live to win me games.
Spark Jolt - Most of the time I cast this it was just so I could fix my top deck by scrying. One time I used it to kill my scavenger just to use it up pump my Loyalist.
Thunder Strike - All-star combat trick. To tell the truth I wish I would have had a second one in the pool. Love eating dudes with first strike.
Verdant Haven - Seeing how I passed over all the duals that came out of the RtR block packs I needed some mana fixing. Haven is cool because it also gains you life which helps when you have to skip turn three to fix your mana.
Bogbrew Witch - Took this just to rare draft it when it cycled back to me.
Corpse Blockade - Was thinking of using it if I got more token makers but in the end I had to table the idea.
Crush - Brought this in a few times verses opponents with good equipments.
Deathmark - Good removal for the white/green match-ups.
Dynacharge - Thought about using this as a combat trick, but figured it would stay in the board just encase someone build a mill deck or other alt-win brew.
Forest - You’ll see that I have two on color basics in the sideboard. This isn’t because I wanted to be able to adjust the number of basics when going to the side. Nope, I’m not that smart at next-level thinking. These are here because I always pimp my decks with full art basics.
Hexplate Golem - Took this encase I needed a large fatty.
Maze Behemoth - Was hoping to see some large multicolored creatures, but didn’t see any.
Manabarbs - Early picked this when I was thinking about being more aggro, or if I saw a control build that wanted to go late.
Mountain - See Forest
Naturalize - Artifact and enchantment hate spell. Auto sideboard card verses almost every deck I faced.
Phytoburst - Took this in pack one when I thought I might get more infect dudes.
Pistus Strike - Flying removal that is the perfect sideboard tech.
Rally the Forces - Another combat trick I was thinking about but ended up leaving in the side. If I would have got a second Young Pyromancer I would have played this.
Reclaim - Brought this in for a few games were I figured I would need to reuse key cards.
Shadowborn Apostle - Pack-one, pick-one just because I need them for Modern Battle of Wits. I know, I’m kind of crazy. Then again the pack was lame and I figured this would cut black as the only other cards in that color were late pick discard effects.
Showstopper - Another combat trick I thought about using in the main deck. Was planning to use it if I saw a deck with any kind of mass removal.
Skynight Legionnaire - I just hate drafted this when a pack no longer had any good picks for me.
Smelt - Another awesome artifact removal card for those matches.
Sorin’s Thirst - Was going to use this as removal in the main, but I already had a number of double green and red spells and didn’t have enought mana fixing for this as well.
Tangle Hulk - Nice regenerate creature I took thinking about using it in the main. Looking back I should have ran this over Garruk’s Companion.
Unnatural Predation - Green combat trick that I skipped over in favor of the red tricks.
In the end I think I did good with my picks and my battle plan going into the tournament. I finished the night in 3rd place with a 3-1 record. I really enjoy the Chaos format because of how it rewards meta-game thinking when drafting and selecting packs. Also the fact that you get to relive you favorite sets and see how they mix with others is a lot of fun. I was very tempted to pay extra cash to get Alliances packs with hopes of cracking a Force fo Will, maybe next Chaos draft.
So thinking about doing a Chaos draft of your own? Leave a comment below telling me what three packs you would pick and why. That’s all for now, this has been....
Jeffrey Carmichael II
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