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Thread: Elves at EW Trial

  1. #1
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    Elves at EW Trial

    Got 3rd/4th (we did a prize split) at a 19 player Eternal Weekend Trial yesterday; I scooped the semis to a friend who wanted the bye, which I did not care about.

    Our local metal is usually full of D&T, Reanimator, and Chalice decks, and hardly ever any Delver. Ever. My sideboard reflects that. I had been playing around with an Elderscale Wurm but I wasn't expecting any matchups where that'd help much. I opted for cards that'd help me win rather than not lose.

    1 Birchlore Rangers
    4 Heritage Druid
    4 Llanowar Elves
    4 Nettle Sentinel
    4 Quirion Ranger
    4 Wirewood Symbiote
    4 Elvish Visionary
    1 Scavenging Ooze
    1 Reclamation Sage
    2 Craterhoof Behemoth

    4 Glimpse of Nature
    4 Green Sun's Zenith
    3 Natural Order

    2 Bayou
    2 Dryad Arbor
    3 Forest
    4 Gaea's Cradle
    4 Misty Rainforest
    1 Pendelhaven
    4 Verdant Catacombs

    Sideboard
    3 Faerie Macabre
    1 Reclamation Sage
    1 Shaman of the Pack
    1 Progenitus
    4 Cabal Therapy
    2 Thoughtseize
    3 Abrupt Decay

    Round 1: Death and Taxes
    G1: He goes T1 Mother of Runes, T2 Stoneforge Mystic for Umezawa's Jitte. I have a either a Rec Sage or GSZ in my hand so I don't worry about it. Jitte connects once with a pro-green SFM, he kills a few things. I Rec Sage the Jitte, and we both spend a few turns gumming up the board. Eventually he lands a Mirran Crusader and has a Batterskull in hand, while I've had a Craterhoof rotting in my hand. Two turns away from lethal I draw a Cradle, hardcast 'Hoof, and swing in for 40+ trample damage.
    G2: Similar to game one except T1 Aether Vial, T2 SFM for Jitte. I Rec Sage it after one hit. 'Hoof him not long after. He gets salty, tries to drop from the tournament and says he's going to go home and play Hearthstone while ranting about how the format is garbage (his friends ended up convincing him to not drop and he played a few more rounds, finishing somewhere in the middle of the standings).
    2-0 games, 1-0 matches

    Round 2: Burn
    G1: He gets a T1 Goblin Guide and starts beating down. I ignore it for a while and 'Hoof him after he's stuck on one land the whole game.
    G2: I mull to 5. He gets a T1 Monastery Swiftspear which I try to ignore and develop my board, and then he wipes the board with Pyroclasm which I was not expecting. I'm dead shortly after.
    G3: He gets double Goblin Guide by T2 and starts beating down, and I finally(!) get to pull lands off the triggers. I develop my board to get ready to combo and then he Pyroclasms, wiping both our boards. He drops Eidolon of the Great Revel, but I GSZ for a Rec Sage instead of casting the one in my hand to avoid damage. That buys me enough time to GSZ a Scavenging Ooze and start gaining life back while developing my board. He durdles waiting for another land, then I cast Craterhoof.
    2-1 games, 2-0 matches

    Round 3: Grixis Control
    G1: He spins wheels as the deck does, I go for a T3 or T4 Natural Order hoping he doesn't have Force. I mess up and don't untap an elf with Quirion Ranger before sacrificing it to the NO, which prevents me from dealing lethal damage. He ends up at 4 life and takes over the game after slowly picking off my board and getting Jace, the Mind Sculptor and Liliana of the Veil online.
    G2: He picks off my creatures one by one until he once again gets Jace and Lili online. Rough. Turns out bouncing elves back with Symbiote to protect from removal sucks when your opponent just Hymn to Tourachs thems away immediately after.
    0-2 games, 2-1 matches

    Round 4: Red Prison
    G1: I'm one turn away from comboing and he wipes my board with Fiery Confluence. Chandra, Torch of Defiance comes down and I can't keep up afterwards. T2 Magus of the Moon hurt me hard as I only was able to get one Forest out in time.
    G2: Similar to G1, except Karn, Scion of Urza also joined the party. His Ensnaring Bridge helps protect me from a huge Construct token and two Rabblemasters, but I am unable to take care of the bridge and Natural Order in the same turn, and taking care of only the bridge opens me up to a lethal attack on the backswing. Chandra emblem ends up winning the game. I think I had mulled to 5 or 6 and it was a while until I saw a basic Forest, which slowed me down considerably.
    0-2 games, 2-2 matches.

    Round 5: Orcish Lumberjack Naya Natural Order Maverick Pile (seriously, what is this deck called?)
    G1: He starts immediately picking off my creatures with Punishing Fire, but doesn't do much else to develop his board. I eventually get a Glimpse chain going (the only substantial one of the day) and create too many targets for Fire to effectively handle. He Crop Rotates for a Dryad Arbor, and NO's for a Primeval Titan to try to ramp into the Dragonlord Atarka in his hand. I'm one turn away from lethal damage and have few outs. Draw a Cradle, hardcast the Craterhoof in hand and swing for 30ish damage.
    G2: He tells me later he kept a hand hinging on Punishing fire. His first turn is Mox Diamond and land. He Fires my first creature, and on his second turn he drops a Grove of the Burnwillows and tries to get the Fire back. I hit it with a Faerie Macabre, and he does pretty much nothing the next few turns until I get to Natural Order territory and win.
    2-0 games, 3-2 matches. 7th place going into top 8.

    Quarterfinals: BUG Lands Control a.k.a. Baxter BUG
    G1: He kept a slow hand, slowly picking away at my things. He eventually Force of Wills an Elvish Visionary since I had a Wirewood Symbiote already out, which left me open to either NO or hardcast 'Hoof the next turn (I don't remember which).
    G2: I mulligan to 4 cards. My 7 was a one lander with Cradle, my 6 was a one lander with Cradle, my 5 was a one lander with Cradle. My 4 was great as far as 4 card hands are concerned, but he Stifled my only fetchland and had a T3 Liliana of the Veil so I just scooped so I could focus on a game where I get to play Magic instead.
    G3: I try to be cautious in developing my board because I know he has lots of board wipes. T1 he Thoughtseizes away my Elvish Visionary since I had a Symbiote in hand, leaving me with a Natural Order. He then gets a T2 Sylvan Library and T3 Baleful Strix, which halts my beatdown plan. On his turn I Abrupt Decay the Library, knowing I'll lose for sure if it sticks around, and then on my turn he counters my Reclamation Sage that I cast in hopes that I can open up the beatdown plan again. We both spin wheels two or three more turns while he kills my stuff. He Thoughtseizes me again to take away my NO, not realizing I drew a second. He is at 9 life at this point. I untap, Natural Order with only a Symbiote left on the battlefield. I was going to get a Progenitus and pray that he doesn't have a Bontu's Last Reckoning in hand, but realize that even with Strix chumping the Craterhoof is exactly lethal. Opponent reveals he has a Dark Depths in hand (plus the Thespian's Stage already in play), and had he held off on the Thoughtseize he would've been safe from both Progenitus and Craterhoof and could've killed me with Marit Lage the next turn.

    Semis: Miracles with Rest in Peace, Energy Field, and Helm of Obedience
    Top 4 already prize split, and I scoop since he wanted to play for the bye.

    Ended up with the Lotus Petal playmat and enough credit for two Karns.


    Post tournament observations:
    -This is the first combo deck I've genuinely enjoyed playing, and I think it's because it has plenty of interaction and a ton of lines while still keeping a combo finish.
    -I won every single game with Craterhoof Behemoth either hard cast or NO'd into play.
    -I drew a million cards off Visionary loops, but not much off Glimpse. Most of the times it was a "value Glimpse" for one or two cards, and I only got one chain going the whole day. I usually sided out 1-2 Glimpse in each matchup I wanted to bring in Decays.
    -Shaman of the Pack is probably a wasted sideboard slot; not sure what matchups I even want it in.
    -Discard is still great against combo, and while I didn't end up needing it for this event it's been great in the past (especially Cabal Therapy).
    -This deck is freaking hard, and I was kicking myself for how many tricks I kept missing with Quirion Ranger and Symbiote that would've allowed me to attack for more damage, save more creatures, or combo a turn earlier.

    EDIT: edited details of quarterfinals game two that I remembered after a discussion about Stifle today.
    Last edited by RobNC; 08-23-2018 at 08:19 PM.

  2. #2

    Re: Elves at EW Trial

    Who else was in top 4 besides you and RIP Helm guy?

  3. #3
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    Re: Elves at EW Trial

    Quote Originally Posted by NeckBird View Post
    Who else was in top 4 besides you and RIP Helm guy?
    Grixis Control and RIP Helm were in the finals, with Grixis Control winning. I scooped to RIP Helm and the Sneak & Show player scooped to the Grixis Control player in the semis so we could grab dinner and sort out who got the playmat as part of the prize split.

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