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Author Topic: Mox pearl Split with Dragon  (Read 1313 times)
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« on: March 14, 2005, 12:32:16 am »

3/11/05 Mox Tourney at Adventure's Guild, Eau Claire Wisconsin

As of late I have had nothing to do so, Iíve been reduced to Bum/loser status.  I just graduated from college this past December and am attempting to go to gradschool.  In the meantime between graduating and getting accepted and moving I have been drifting around and staying with different friends and family members.  This has allowed me to play magic in different locations and meet new and interesting people.  For the past month I and my team (I@n Degraff and Andy Hyzer) have been toying around with different psychatog builds and have been fairly successful winning two moxes.  After I read Kowals report for Starcity Richmond, I felt that Dragon if built right would have a good chance of being successful in just about any environment.  I then started toying with different dragon builds.  I first I wanted to cut green for red for red elemental blasts and rack N ruins but after playing against dragon and getting owned by Xantid Swarmís I found that green was just too powerful.  I also felt that the witness kill to be more reliable than Kumano.  I didnít like Lim Dulís Vault as a 3 of after play testing.  I also found compulsion as a triad to be more than I wanted.  
That left me two spell slots to play with.  I tested numerous cards in those slots but couldnít find anything that had staying power.  At first I wanted to use thirst for knowledge because it seemed to have synergy.  In doing this I squeezed both sol ring and mana crypt into my build, because of the sheer numbers of 2U and 2B spells.  I found myself pitching this clogging up my hand most of the time.  The best thing it did was give me another pitch card for Force of Will and Bazaar.  I liked intuition so much that I tried four of them.  They gave you the ability to go off with out a draw outlet if you stacked it right, but four was too many because I didnít like seeing in the first couple draws and Intuition is as hot in multiples in your hand.  After cutting TFK and going away from intuition as a 4 of, I cut sol ring for another basic land for more stability.  The next card I tried was Deep Analysis.  The flashback ability was fairly useful and the fact that you could play the card back from the yard made me feel a lot better about dumping it for bazaar.  The card was moderately useful, but the 2 slots needed to be bigger bombs.  I then went the tutor route and used Vampiric tutor and crop rotation, because I always wanted bazaar.  I like the synergy vampiric had with my draw engine, it allowed me to tutor and activate bazaar to draw cards I wanted to see.  The crop rotation did stick around too long.  Some times it was great, like when one of your lands is the target of a waste or strip, but other times it gave your opponent a major tempo shift if they countered or drew a waste the following turn.  I had one open slot, I figured I would use it as a metagame slot once I predicted what most of the field would be.  As always in Eau Claire, the meta is normally saturated with control.  I decided to add a fourth Xantid Swarm to the list, so I could see it as early as possibly, to permit me to cast my money spells without fear.  
I also felt the need to change the alternative kill base, I did not like the main deck verdant force kill as the second option because it could fold to a platinum angel.  I wanted a creature that was versatile and had a utility value.  I can see how verdant force is awesome when stalling out and you can get some early beats in and also have an almost unlimited supply of chump blockers, but I wanted a creature that could hold its own to most control decks, so I decided to maindeck 1 Triskelion.  Triskelion can take down platz, kill your opponent and if animated early act as spot removal for the most annoying creature in the game.  Not having verdant Force as the backup kill allowed me to change the time walk slot as well.  Although time walk is good, I feel that demonic tutor was a better fit in this deck because of its ability to get you what you need.  Time walk is an awesome tempo shift, but if does not bring as much as demonic to the deck.  I still feel that I should test it more in a different slot, to further evaluate its use.  Due to my natural inclination for basic land and the amount of titans and wastes I expected to face I wanted fit at least 3 in the build.  I went with 2 Islands and 1 swamp.  Without further delay here is my list:

21 Mana
4 Polluted Deltas
1 Flooded Strand
3 Underground Seas
3 Tropical Islands
2 Islands
1 Swamp
5 Moxen
1 Black Lotus
1 Crypt

14 Creatures
4 Worldgorger Dragonís
4 Squeeís
4 Xantids Swarms
1 Eternal Witness
1 Triskelion

4 Disruption
4 Force of Will

14 Tutor/Draw
2 Lim Dulís Vault
3 Intuitionís
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Ancestral Recall
2 Compulsion
4 Bazaar of Baghdadís

7 Win
4 Animate Dead
3 Necromancy

3 Chalice of the Void
3 Pernicious Deed
3 Stifle
2 Sundering Titans
2 Echoing Truth
1 Hurkylís Recall
1 Triskelion

I leave my momís home around 1, to head down to Rice Lake to pick up Andy.  On the way down I run into on and off snow flurries until I hit Rice Lake and it goes from nice to an all out blizzard.  Andy grabs his stuff and we head to Eau Claire.  We go to the local shop were Andy used to work at so I could get the jank crap I need for my deck, 1 stifle, 2 compulsions and 1 witness.  We then make an important and vital decision, where to eat before the tournament.  We decide to go to Culvers for some burger and malt action.  We head over to the guild about 45 minutes early.  This gives I@n and I just enough time to scramble and through are decks together.  Andy decided on the way down to not borrow Ian any power, so he is stuck playing another persons food chain gobblins build.  Andy says this will be a good learning experience, since I@n decided to leave his power at his home in madison.  I on the other hand am still short one piece of power, but lucky for me Tommy from team ICBM arrives and lets me borrow one bazaar and some sideboard stuff.  I get my deck list in and shuffle once just in time for pairings.

Round 1 Adam Boese With budget Sensie Sensie
I win the die and go Tropical, Swarm go.  He drops and Island plays sol ring, vault then top and passes the turn.  I attack proceed to drop bazaar activate and draw, discard and pass the turn.  I drop 2 dragons and 1 random card.  He cunning wishes for a weird sideboard card that states, X1UU take control of target creature with casting cost X.  Next turn I attack with swarm play land, and animate for the wind.  
Game two goes about the same, He plays a couple of land and brainstorms twice.  I drop a bazaar and dump dragon and animate him on turn 3 with force backup, with another animate spell in hand for next turn.  As with combo Iím done fairly early so I go scout and trade.
G: 2-0

Round 2 Kinney with Landstill
I go first again, and drop a turn 1 bazaar and draw some cards, I drop 1 squee, 1 dragon, and vault (I think) into my yard.  He drops a an Island and passes the turn.  The next turn I drop Lotus, Tropical and a mox.  I then play Swarm (bait) which he brainstorms then forces, I break Lotus for Demonic then go for Animate and hit the dragon.  I go Infinite and win.
I receive a first turn hand consisting of 1 mox, 1 compulsion, and five land (no Bazaar).  I decide that the hand is doable but too risky, if he forces or destroys compulsion Iím screwed.  The next hand has no land, so since being on the draw, I mull down to five.  I get a mediocre hand of five cards and 1 trop, so I keep.  Kinney Drops a turn 1 Library and passes his turn.  I drop my trop and let him go.  Kinney then draws off the library and passes the turn.  I draw and say go.  Next turn plays standstill and drops a manland.  I go about five turns with out a land and take a beating before top decking a polluted delta awesomeness.  I then let kinney go, at the end of his turn, I break standtill with lim duls vault.  I knew kinney had 7 cards in his hand when I broke standstill, I failded to notice that he didnít discard.  I notice at the end of my next turn after I had all ready demonic tutored and pass the turn.  I call a judge and kinney gets a warning, and is forced to discard immediately.  I blame myself, because good players notice small things like that (your opponent having 11 cards in his hand).  He tries to tell me that I played the Vault during my turn, but then I show the demonic I played.  I get the bazaar squee engine going and start drawing some cards.  A couple turns later he strips my bazaar and drops a lavamancer.  I draw and drop a land, by now I have 3-4 lands and a couple of moxes, finally.  There was a point where more than 50% of my remaining deck was land and I still couldnít draw any.  I draw and try to resolve a Swarm but its countered.  His next turn he plays crucible, and I force but lose the counter war.  I lose another land.  I then play two animate spells in one turn trying to win know before I lose all my lands.  Both get countered.  Next turn kinney beats with manland action after stripping again.  Iím on the verge of losing my last land, I try to animate out of desperation, but its countered.  I lose .
There is not a lot of time left (under ten minutes) and I feel that his deck is too slow to be able to beat in that time.  I go first and keep a strong hands of swarm and bazaar mox and three other business spells.  I drop trop swarm.  He wastes my trop.  I then go bazaar and get the squee engine going.  I draw into another bazaar.  He then wastes my bazaar.  The turn after he wastes my other land, but I soon after drop my second bazaar and get it going.  A few turns later I animate for the win behind my second swarm, after he fired my first one.  I finish on the second turn of five.

Round 3 Steve Lehman (Fool) with U/G March Madness
I lose the die roll and have to go second.  He drops Island and Sapphire, but I am not too worried because I know from sitting next to him in round 1 he is playing some sort of Blue green maddness, so I have a good Idea of his counter and draw base.  During my turn I drop a bazaar and pitch squee, dragon, and am forced to dump vault to keep my business spells.  He wastes my draw next turn and says go.  I then play what a land and pass.  He says he wasted a second land but I donít remember.  I know on turn three I drop swarm and let him go.  He plays null rod which I donít care too much about and passes.  I attack with swarm (good against green bc/ it has no removal).  I then animate dragon and go infinite.  Iím stupid and intuition for necro, trisk, and witness.  He gives me witness which I cast, because I have infinite mana, and it joins the cycle, I then return and cast trike, which I canít use to kill him, so I return intuition and cast it for compulsion, recall, compulsion and recall him for the win.
This game goes very fast.  I drop an early bazaar and drop squee, land, and dragon and pass.  He plays a second turn rootwalla and lets me go.  I bazaar again and drop squee second dragon and another land.  On his turn I let him drop a mongrel, I consider forcing but donít, because I decide I want to win next turn.  I start the turn with double force of will, and an animate and need a black source which I have been digging for.  I drop a swamp and cast animate, he cirrcular logics me, which I force, he forces my force and I force back so he scoops.

Round 4 Solly (13Nova) with turbo titan
We both consider ID, because we know each other so I ask the tournament advisor and recommends we play it out.
He gets out an early welder, that I contemplate forcing, but I figure he ll be able to fight back.  I get a swarm down.  I vault, but I make a mistake by not pounding through ten cards, and trying to stack the five with compulsion squee and animate so I can go off.  He drops some artifact acceleration (ring lotus) then goes nuts with it by doing welder tricks and hard casts titan.  This ruins most of my lands.  I donít recover, and he beats with the big man.
The biggest thing I remember about this is that he was able to resolve an early back to basics crippling my squee/Bazaar draw engine.  My trop is also tapped down.  I lay an island and am able to inuition, but there is not much I can get to help, because I had all ready discarded my echoing truth.  He strips my island which sucks.  A turn later titan comes down which goes the distance.

Round 5 against Dan Carpe with Tinker deck variation
He stakes his card collection us both IDíing into the finals.  I check with the tournament runner and after ten minutes of bickering they figure it out and we draw in.

Top 8
Ben Carpe with Keeper (3 color)
Keeper is one of the decks that I down right loath.  I was very happy when the deck tailed off in top finishes.  Decks with white are probably one of the worst match ups that I have had with dragon.  During play testing I was owned by bird sh*t.  It was like an anti dragon deck.
I start out with an early xatind.  Which shortly gets swords.  I get a bazaar out and start the squee engine.  He cunnings for cofin purge and removes a squee.  I draw into another squee which shortly gets purged.  A turn later my bazaar gets wasted.  Then just when he gets low on cards and I think I can go for the win he scryeís for 4 and casts a crucible, but luckily for me he has removed his waste in his scrye  I drop another swarm, the next turn Ben lays an morphed angel.  My next phase I make an major mistake and attack with my swarm no noticing that he had enough mana to morph his angel.  A few attacks later, he scryes again filling his hand with counters.  I make one last futil attempt to win, throwing 3 animates and a swarm out in two turns hoping to deplete his counters and sneak one through, but I cannot resolve anything so I get my face beat in by an angel.
I side in 2 titans and a deed and elect to play.  I get my first hand, and its something like, land, Force, vault, titan, mox, necro, and swarm.  I cast a swarm and say go.  He duress I decide to let it go because Im not going to blow two cards to save one,  he freaks, I guess he wasnít expecting the titath.  I draw bazaar next turn and have an outlet for titan.  I attack with swarm and drop bazaar and hit lotus and squee.  I drop squee, force, and titan.  I then necro titan and take his only land.  Lucky for Ben he draws into a pearl.  I swing two turns taking him to six until he swords my titan.  By know I have the dragon in my yard and need only to drop another land to necro dragon.  My swarm has been untouched because Ben was expending his resources on my titan.  After he removes my titan I attack with swarm, drop a land and go off.
This game is very long.  The other people in the top 8 have finished and we were stuck fighting it out.  I get an early bazaar going, until Ben wastes it.  He then tries to cast crucible which I force.  The next turn I drop another bazaar which I drew into with the last one.  The turn after I drop a trop and cast swarm, which is countered.  I then cast another one off emerald.  A turn later Ben swords my swarm.  He then scryeís and gets his hand up to four cards, but this time remembers to leave his waste.  He then shows his hand to his friend and says something like force, drain, and cunning wish.  I then go and take my turn.  I return my two squees, I bazaar, I discard the squees and think long about the third.  I notice he is tapped out, I have two cards, vampiric tutor and animate dead.  I have to discard one.  I decided not guts no glory.  I drop the vampiric tutor in the yard and keep the animate.  I was gonna vamp for swarm but I decided I wanted to win now.  I didnít want him to draw more cards and have to dig with my bazaar.  I animate dragonÖhe has no intial response and tells me to play it out.  I float six I am a bit worried, so I stop loop on witness and return necro, I cast necro on dragon.  Then I return three forces and three other blue cards then I ancestral him to death.  He tries to argue that the witness loop cant work and we draw but his teamate corrects him.  I think he was trying to see if he could get me to screw up to get another game out of me.

Semifinals: Soly (13nova) with Turbo Titan
He wins the die roll and probably feels good about it.  Since my last match went so long, the other semi finals match is over and the winner all ready wants to split.  Probably because its 3 am and he has to drive 4 Ĺ hrs back to Milwaukee.  
I get an awesome hand with emerald swarm bazaar and squee in it.  I lay down a first turn swarm then drop bazaar, and pass.  He lays an island and says go.  I attack he brainstorms in response, after the attack I play a fetch and bazaar and say go.  The next turn he plays a lot of mana accel and drops a welder.  I bazaar and drop another fetch and  pass the turn.  He then gets out a third turn titan but takes non of my land (yeah for fetches).  I take my turn and attack with swarm and pop my fetchs and play my animate that I bazaared into.  I go infinite for the win.
He goes again and keeps what looks to be a resource light hand.  He has academy and lotus early though.  I try for the first turn swarm but he brainstorms and forces.  He draws and says go.  I drop a bazaar and ditch a dragon, squee and a random card.  At the end of my turn he thirsts and with academy/ lotus and burns for one.  Then during his turn he plays land, sol ring and taps out to tinker triskelion into play.  He has three cards left.  I draw return squee and play my fetch.  I pop it and cast animate with Force of will back up.  I see that with three cards and being tapped that his only answer is force, and I have a force to meet it.  He extends his hand and I get the win redeeming myself and my team after he owned all of us earlier in the tournament.

Finals: Dan with Tinker deck variation
By now its 3:30am.  The prize is a played mox pearl and the store owner has offered $160 in cash for a split.  Being early we both opt to take the cash and drive home for some rest.  I win the game of paper rock scissors so I can claim myself the winner.  There is only one problem though, there is a MOXEN MASTER T-Shirt!!  We decided to play one game for the shirt.  I get an explosive hand.
He goes shop gilded lotus.  I go turn one vault and stack for the win. His next turn he plays a welder.  I then drop bazaar and draw ditching 2 squees and a land and pass the turn.  He plays su-chi and lets me go.  I decide not to force because I stacked my top with the vault to win.  I draw bazaar and animate with force back up for the win.  I go home with the T-shirt.  In retrospect I should have traded or played for the mox just so we wonít have to play for the same pearl 3 months strait.  I m glad with the split, his friends got me the cards that I needed to play my deck.

A look back:
I had a good time at the tournament.  It was fun to play a new deck and try out a new archetype.  It was fun to see my teams best player play a budget deck and come a die roll shy of making the top 8 with it.  I think I@n would have made if it he actual had some practice with food chain goblins, he was asking people before the tournament started what to set the stacks with off recruiter.  I have to give Andy props for coming back from a bad start and sneaking into the top 8.  I also would like to thank team ICBM for making the trip and making the tournament competitive and fun.  I have to thank Tommy for borrowing me the cards to play my deck bc/ I was 1 proxy short.  This is the 4th power tourney win this year for El` ToR0.  Hopefully this will give a some credibility.  For some reason I only play good in Eau Claire.  It was nice to actually win after sucking in the Milwaukee/Chicago area.

My feelings toward my Deck:
The deck did what I thought it would, fight control.  I would say that the mvp was the xantid swarms.  The maindeck was very solid.  I felt a lot of the pieces were good in just about every matchup so I only removed 1-2 slots usually for 1-2 deeds or echoing truth.  The titans came in handy against multi colored control decks.  Trisk was nice for taking out welders and little things.  The first thing I would like to change about the deck is the mana base.  I like having three basic land in the deck, but a lot of the time I felt I was digging for black source.  I plan on making the second island a second swamp or a 4th underground sea.  In a different meta I might make a few maindeck changes.  If there was less aggro control and werenít so many wastes I would probably use the 4th sea and I would probably play something else in the 4th xantid slot.  I would have liked to had verdant force in the board, which would give me the ability to go to aggro mode against slaver, but luckily for me I didnít see slaver all day.  Well, let me know what you think of my list and report.  With sideboarding with this deck I only used 2 cards consistently, deed and truth.  I wish now that I had different casting cost bounce spells because 2 is usually what chalice gets set to versus this deck.  I will probably make 1 truth a chain of vapors.  I usually brought in 1-2 deeds or 1-2 truths.  I only boarded 2-3 cards.  I figured if I need them I could tutor for them.

Dying does not matter.  It is how you die that does.
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