Friday Night Magic Prospers at Good Games: Brisbane

karup

Kaine Karup wins the coveted ‘Helmet Bounty’ prize!

Greetings dear readers! For my debut article here on BTGN, I thought it would be appropriate to report back on Wizards of the Coast’s flagship weekly Magic: the Gathering event as hosted by one of Brisbane’s premier gaming stores, Good Games. As something of a veteran Magic player I can confidently say that things have never been better for the ‘Grand Ole TCG’. I remember when the local games shop battled to scrape together 8 players for a draft or a standard event. On Friday, 9th August, no less than 45 enthusiastic duelists showed up for some fiercely contested spell slinging. After 5 rounds of intense action our very own German Juggernaut, Thore Wilmer, snatched top spot and bagged a nifty Voice of Resurgence for his efforts.

Top 8

  1. Thore Wilmer (The Rock)
  2. David Mines (Jund)
  3. Brandon Knight (Selesnya Blitz)
  4. Cameron Harris (Kibler RG)
  5. Kyan Lambie (Naya Aggro)
  6. Joseph Cooper (UWR Flash)
  7. Caleb Shannon (UWR Flash)
  8. James Lynch (UWR Flash)

August and September is usually the time of year when standard (the format that comprises cards from the 2 most recent block expansions) is at its most diverse since the card pool is at its largest before a new block is introduced at the end of September. In this case the upcoming expansion, Theros (an ancient Greek themed set), will rotate into the format while Innistrad, Dark Ascension and Avacyn Restored all rotate out. I interviewed some of the players to find out, among other things, which cards they will be glad to put out to pasture.

 

mines

Dave Mines

Which card are you glad to see leave the format in September?

Which deck are you playing tonight?

  • Jund Midrange

When did you start playing Magic?

  • Invasion (2000)

What is your all-time favourite card?

Domino’s Pizza?

  • Ham, mushroom, olive, tomato and basil. (As a former pizza joint employee, Dave assures me that this is a tier 1 brew)

 

knight

Brandon Knight

Which card are you glad to see leave the format in September?

Which deck are you playing tonight?

  • Selesnya Aggro

When did you start playing Magic?

  • Zendikar (2009)

What is your all-time favourite card?

Domino’s Pizza?

  • Hawaiian

 

yoshino

Takumi Yoshino

Which card are you glad to see leave the format in September?

  • All the miracles!

Which deck are you playing tonight?

  • 4 Colour Pike

When did you start playing Magic?

  • New Phyrexia (2011)

What is your all-time favourite card?

Domino’s Pizza?

  • Pepperoni

 

vanmaarseveen

Ryan van Maarseveen

Which card are you glad to see leave the format in September?

Which deck are you playing tonight?

  • Boros Aggro

When did you start playing Magic?

  • Innistrad (2011)

What is your all-time favourite card?

Domino’s Pizza?

  • Meatlovers

 

wilmer

Thore Wilmer

Which card are you glad to see leave the format in September?

Which deck are you playing tonight?

  • The Mighty Rock! (BG control)

When did you start playing Magic?

  • Revised (1994)

What is your all-time favourite card?

Domino’s Pizza?

  • Duck (Chef’s selection)

 

No tournament report would be complete without a couple of sweet deck techs for the discerning Magic palate. First up is Andrew Fulker’s beast of a Bant deck:

Fulker’s Life Brew

Main Deck:
2 Archangel of Thune
3 Centaur Healer
1 Garruk, Caller of Beasts
2 Lavinia of the Tenth
2 Restoration Angel
2 Rhox Faithmender
4 Scavenging Ooze
1 Tamiyo, the Moon Sage
2 Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice

1 Advent of the Wurm
2 Angelic Accord
3 Chromatic Lantern
2 Conjurer’s Closet
2 Negate
2 Render Silent
2 Sphinx’s Revelation
4 Supreme Verdict

1 Azorius Guildgate
2 Breeding Pool
3 Forest
2 Glacial Fortress
2 Hallowed Fountain
4 Island
2 Plains
2 Simic Guildgate
2 Sunpetal Grove
3 Temple Garden

Sideboard:
2 Angel of Jubilation
3 Fiendslayer Paladin
2 Intrepid Hero
3 Pithing Needle
1 Sigarda, Host of Herons
2 Silklash Spider
2 Witchstalker

Andrew’s philosophy is fairly simple here. If his deck gains more life than his opponent is able to deal damage, then victory is all but assured. His list is populated with an assortment of powerful Bant cards anchored by the control staples, Supreme Verdict and Scavenging Ooze. “Scavenging Ooze is the best card in the deck. It disrupts so many cards in the format at the moment,” opines Andrew. He described how an opponent in the previous round attempted to kill his men with Drown in Filth. In response, Andrew could either eat his opponent’s lands to reduce the power of the sorcery, or simply grow his Ooze by removing creatures from graveyards. “Angelic Accord was also better than expected. I think I would like to add more to the deck” (more on this card later).  Andrew was inspired to build the deck by combining his two favourite Ravnica legends, Trostani and Lavinia. Also watch out for Conjurer’s Closet. That card is a wrecking ball! Disclaimer from Andrew: the Guildgates are substituting for the shocklands he does not own yet.

Ok here’s the skinny. I was suffering from a nasty case of man-flu on Friday but I persevered because I just had to try out this monstrosity:

Jono’s WB Angel Post

Main Deck:

4 Angelic Accord
3 Barter in Blood
2 Bubbling Cauldron
3 Doom Blade
4 Lingering Souls
3 Ratchet Bomb
4 Scroll of Avacyn
2 Sign in Blood
4 Trading Post
2 Tragic Slip
2 Tribute to Hunger
1 Ultimate Price
2 Underworld Connections

4 Godless Shrine
4 Isolated Chapel
4 Mutavault
2 Orzhov Guildgate
2 Plains
6 Swamp
2 Vault of the Archangel

Sideboard:
2 Beckon Apparition
2 Devour Flesh
3 Duress
2 Obzedat, Ghost Council
2 Pithing Needle
1 Underworld Connections
2 Witchbane Orb

The Angelic Accord/Trading Post combination has been gaining some traction among rogue brewers of late. I tested an Orzhov version but concluded that it was missing something. Then I saw a deck on Magic Online that used the obscure 1 mana cantrip, Scroll of Avacyn, to combine with both Angelic Accord and Trading Post. When I saw him/her activate the scroll with an active Mutavault in play (Mutavault counts as an angel you know) I knew immediately that it was the missing ingredient. I tested the updated list and was impressed with the results. It’s my favourite deck type, combo/control, and it also mimics my favourite 2 card combo, Thopter Foundry/Sword of the Meek. If you assemble the combo and your opponent only has creatures then it is almost impossible to lose. ‘Gaining life’, ‘making angels’ and ‘drawing cards’ are three of my favourite Magic phrases and this deck lets you put them all in one sentence! The deck’s weakness is its reliance on Angelic Accord. If your opponent packs enchantment removal then it is a usually a lost cause. The deck also struggles to match the raw power of Sphinx’s Revelation and Rakdos’s Return. I took this list to a very respectable 3-1-1 at the FNM for a 9th place finish. In spite of the drawbacks I expect Angelic Accord to be, at the very least, a popular fringe strategy over the next year. You have been warned!

Thanks for reading guys. Look out for more articles from me in the coming weeks as I keep you updated on what’s happening at Good Games and please let me know what you did or did not like about this tournament report. Cheers!

Jonathan

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