Wednesday, 17 August 2011

M12 (almost) mono blue Draft (and first picks)

After not being able to go draft for a while, I finally managed to get to Hemel to do a M12 draft yesterday. So this post will briefly cover that, and after look at the packs I won and think about first picks from them. 

I don't think the draft went too well, it was a bit all over the place, starting with an Acidic Slime and then picking up a Mind Control (I think the person who passed it picked up a Planeswalker...). I also get some red cards, so wasn't sure where I would end up. In the second pack, I opened a range of cards, but picked a Doom Blade and seemed to stick to blue, picking up the Illusion Lord and a few Illusion Dragons on the way. 


The deck in the end was almost a mono blue deck, and I could have splashed green, or red, or black and either green or red. I didn't want to go mono blue because it would require playing sub-par cards, and really wanted to play the Doom Blade, even as the only black card, and decided that the red cards were stronger than the green (mainly because two shocks is removal vs a green web). Plus red had a dragon. 


This is roughly the deck I ended up playing:






I probably over compensated on colour fixing (playing more mountains than I needed to I am sure), but wanted to ensure I could cast the shocks fairly early (for speed vs. bloodthirst decks). 


Round 1
In the first round, I played Jim, who was playing a fairly speedy black white deck. I lost both games pretty quickly to something being given protection from creatures, which I couldn't do much about in time before being killed. 


Round 1.1
After playing the two matches, Jim asked if he could playtest his Vintage Deck against me in preparations for UK Nats (I had brought along a Legacy Goblins deck and he suspected he might see a few goblin decks). The first game went something like this:


Me: "Mountain, Go"
Jim: "Black Lotus, sacrifice for UUU, play Ancestral Recal, Mishra's Workshop, cast Sphere of Resistance and Lodestone Golem". 
Me: "So my non-artifact spells cost 2 more to cast?"
Jim: "Yes"
Me:  "Ok. Mountain, Go"


It didn't go too well after that. In another game I did get him down to one, just, after sideboarding in some artifact hate (not enough apparently). I did also Mental Misstep a Goblin Welder at one point. 


Round 2
In round 2, my opponent had a black red deck, and I opened with a bear and merfolk, and stopped him from dealing me damage for a few turns, managing to win fairly quickly through flying damage. In the second game, I had a similar start, and was able to get out both Lord of the Unreal and Phantasmal Dragon to win the game, again quite quickly. 


Round 3
In round 3 I lost the first game, but managed to win the next two, both very close games. He also had some fliers, I was able to control the board quite well with a sideboarded Blood Ogre


Prize Pack 1
Notable picks: Incinerate, Arachnus Web, Day of Judgement and Arbalest Elite in a heavy White pack. 


The white cards are not as splashable, but are more powerful, so I think I would probably pick one anyway. It's hard to signal that White is open as 5 white cards in the pack (others not mentioned as they are not as powerful, but are Assault Griffin, Armoured Warhorse and Stormfront Pegasus). I think the pick here is Day of Judgement as it has an immediate affect whereas the Elite is more fragile (to other removal). Its a tough pick for sure. Liz said she would probably pick the Incinerate because she likes playing red and doesn't like playing white...


Prize Pack 2
Notable picks: Pacifism, Serra Angel (foil), Rune-Scarred Demon


Again, there are some other alright cards, none first pick quality, and the ones here are of very high quality. I think the Angel is better than the Pacifism, but the Demon is very good - big, searches for your next best card (which will hopefully either be another bomb or some removal). I think I would pick the Demon here (and Liz agrees here). However if I was passed this pack after the previous one, I would go for the Angel, as it is in colour to push me heavily into White.