Demonic Tutor

Magic: the Gathering in the UK

Saw some pretty fun interactions and game states at the prerelease.

New World Order can bite me - if anything the board states were too complex.

Still have no idea how it is going to draft.

The Detain UW aggro deck has just got to be good.  Scavenge seems like it will mostly be too slow.  Unleash aggro on curve seems hard to beat.  Dan Royde tried to explain to me why decks will mostly be two color not three color but I didn't understand.

Good fun was had, though. Especially doing 10 to Russ' face for 12 mana with a total of about 8 cards left in both libraries.

How did you find it?

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Why would you want to play 3 colours in RRR? There is no real justification for it, except as a minor splash

I also enjoyed the pre-release too

I thought three colors might be reasonably common because there is some reasonable amount of fixing and the multicolored spells are better than the non-multicolored spells.

I wouldn't mind playing Selesnya Charm and the Golgari Guildmage in the same deck, for a random example.

What fixing is there apart from gates and the 0/2 that searches out Gates?  There's the artifact that makes your mana perfect.  Is that it?

The 3 mana artifact things. The thing is, with sufficient guild support, most of the time there isnt a big impetus to draft a 3rd colour. I mean you can be XY splash a card or two of z, but 3 colour decks like in Shards for instance feel a lot weaker. Especially as it looks like all of rakdos azorious and selesnya are going to have consistent aggro decks. It doesnt feel like a format where you can mess around with a clunky manabase when there is no real need to..

but playing 5 colors is so much fun : ( 

while it could be a viable strategy in sealed I don't think it will work properly in draft as you would have to pick mana fixing too high to be able to also pick up enough threats... sticking to two colors will most likely be optimal, although obviously if you're Selesnya based and you open a Vraska pack 3 you might want ot explore the possibilities of branching out

I had a full article written on this but decided not to pubish in case I got ppl in trouble, and spoilt various pre-releases. I'll put it up on mana leak or something in a week. After about 12 real life rav drafts, and a few on netdraft, I make the following few comments (in simple terms, could expand...):

1) Basically, there are only 4 guilds in ravnica draft. Izzet has a ton of bombs, but no real depth for a deck in the vast majority of drafts.

2) There are 2 broadly aggro archetypes (UW and RB) and 2 broadly controlling archetypes (GB and GW). Unleash and detain are simple mechanics in theory, but extremely complex in gameplay. Each unleash card is essentially a split card, and the choices are not obvious. Green decks have the most card advantage (either making threats relevant late game via scavenge, or card advantage via populate). This means that a card like Tressle Troll is a high pick and even splashable, whereas in previous draft formats it would be a low pick. Horned turtle (a blue 1/4) would not be good in this format (although if it existed it might make izzet playable...).

3) Most of the power/complexity is at uncommon or rare. There are many many vanilla or french vanilla creatures at common.

4) Because of this, 3 colours (or 2 + a splash) should be the norm. It is very easy to splash, there are gates and the rupture spire reprint at common. The most common splashes are RBu and UWr (aggro -> izzet) and GBw and GWb (the two green guilds splashing between themselves for defensive cards and late game)

5) The removal is very expensive, red and black get a 3 drop removal each at common, but everything else costs 6. This means that this is an "aggro" format, in that there is very little time to mess around because board states build up quickly, and missing a drop on curve (either aggressive or defensive) can put you a long way behind. 2 and 3 drops are better than normal. This doesn't mean the format is fast (Rise of the Eldrazi was a similar format, but very slow).

6) Teleportal is one of the best cards in the set because it goes in both of the main aggro archetypes (UWr and RBu) and trumps the late game of the slow decks in the format (Gx) which try to win by stalling the board. Because of the lack of removal, there will always be many creatures which can benefit. Because the card exists, the populate fog is better than usual.

I like this format a lot. It is complicated and skill intensive (both WU and RB aggro decks are very hard to play well due to the huge number of choices available on their keywords). This is also the only format I remember for a long time where Blue is a key aggro colour and Green is the key control/card advantage colour...

(it goes without saying that I disagree strongly with Charlie about splashing...)

So I should be first picking the blue 0/6 wall?    :)


In all honesty though I had him in one of my pools and he was really good at slowing them down.

In my awesome Izzet pool the 0/6 wall was an MVP.  More than one Ultimate Price aimed in its direction too.  Almost certainly not so good in draft but it's not impossible.  Big Stab Wound target.

Chunter chunter, not 8 cards left in my library but exactly three. And they were; Hypersonic Dragon, Niv Mizzet, and Explosive Impact!  ;)

Chunter chunter.

if you wanted to try to play izzet, I expect that the wall is one of the best cards in the archetype, the only problem is that izzet is comparitively slow, whereas your two easiest colours to splash (URb and RUw) are both full of detain and unleash creatures. Ironically, I think the 0/6 wall is actually at its best in GREEN decks...

Where are you in the world, Pete?  How come you weren't at TGC prerelease?

Looking forward to drafting G control.

I live in Brussels atm for phd purposes, although fortunately my research requires me to travel quite a bit.... played the  midnight pre-release in Belgium, but only 1....

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