On Saturday, Asgard Games was hosting a Vegas GPT & Win-A-Dual. As I’m keen on byes and always enjoy battling the Houston crowd, I decided I’d make the trip. I woke up early and was on the road by 7:30. That left plenty of time for McDonald’s breakfast, some Frank Zappa instrumentals, and the new episode of Tusk Talk. Getting into the city at 10:30, I met my Goyf teammates Sam and Ben at Brash Brewery, which was hosting a coffee stout & doughnut brunch. It was extremely humid in the brewery, so when we left at 11:00 we were all appropriately swampy for a day of Magic.
Like every other Legacy player, I don’t quite know what the post-Top world will look like. However, GBx, Elves, and Combo all feel like safe bets in the short term. Given that, it felt like Maverick was my best choice for the day. I’ve been playing the deck for about a month and still a long way off from mastering it, but it feels like the deck can beat the other fair decks while having reasonable outs to most unfair situations. Here’s the 75 I registered:
1 Birds of Paradise
4 Deathrite Shaman
1 Scryb Ranger
4 Mother of Runes
2 Stoneforge Mystic
4 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben
2 Thalia, Heretic Cathar
1 Gaddock Teeg
2 Qasali Pridemage
4 Knight of the Reliquary
4 Green Sun’s Zenith
1 Sylvan Library
4 Swords to Plowshares
2 Abrupt Decay
1 Umezawa’s Jitte
4 Windswepth Heath
4 Verdant Catacombs
1 Dryad Arbor
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Scavenging Ooze
1 Melira, Sylvok Outcast
2 Ethersworn Canonist
1 Gaddock Teeg
2 Zealous Persecution
2 Surgical Extraction
1 Pithing Needle
1 Bojuka Bog
1 Maze of Ith
(Pretty standard, though the Melira is a concession to a local Houston Infect player and fellow Goyf teammate, Sean. He’s a very good player I wouldn’t expect to beat without extreme hate, and Melira’s as extreme as Infect-hate gets.)
We got to Asgard at 11:30, expecting the 12:00 start posted on their website. Unfortunately, they decided that 12:00 was when registration began, and the event wouldn’t start till 1:00. Oh well. That left plenty of time for Ben and me to fill out deck reg sheets and go to Whataburger (my third artery-clogging meal in 4 hours).
All told, 17 players showed up. In addition to byes, we were battling for a Bayou. It sounded cool on paper, but as the value of the Bayou was subtracted from the prize pool, payouts were pretty dinky. Like, $15 for 5th-8th. Good thing no one should be playing Legacy for the money!
Round 1: Dan on Sneak & Show: 1-2
- Game 1: I’ve played Dan before and knew what he was on. It’s a decent matchup for Maverick, but I mulled to 4 to find lands and then lost pretty handily. Good start to the day.
- Game 2: I Duress him turn 1, then make Thalia 2.0 and a Knight. It’s easy from there.
- Game 3: I have a pretty controlling board of Karakas, Maze, Canonist, etc, but not much pressure. When he’s at 3 life, he Show & Tells an Omniscience into an Emrakul. I can survive and win off the crackback, but he when he casts a 2nd Emrakul it’s game.
Round 2: Sam on Tin Fins: 2-1
- Game 1: Considering Sam and I were just discussing Tin Fins earlier this morning, I know what he’s on. I make a quick Teeg to shut off the Storm kill, but he reanimates a hasty Griselbrand and Emrakul for the win.
- Game 2: I don’t have any notes, but I think I just locked him out with bears.
- Game 3: Despite many savage punts on my part (e.g. I had lethal between a DRS activation and exalted Scryb Ranger, but chose to instead swing with 2 creatures, 1 of which could be blocked by Sam’s Confidant) I got there off the back of hate bears and Sam being mana screwed.
Round 3: Mark on Shardless Aluren: 1-0-1
- Game 1: Mark’s relatively new to Legacy and I haven’t played him before. He started playing BUGy stuff, so I put him on either Shardless or Aluren. Eventually there’s a Cavern Harpy to clear up any confusion. No real notes, but I just ground him out with superior creatures while keeping him off Aluren.
- Game 2: We built a big stalled board of midrange dudes and a 2v2 Deathrite battle. He gets me down to 1 life, but can’t close it out before the clock gets him.
Round 4: Sean on Infect: 2-1
- Game 1: I’m thrilled when I see the pairings – the Melira gamble payed off! I don’t really remember what he did, but I died to poison counters somehow or other.
- Game 2: I make a Melira that he can’t ever really beat.
- Game 3: I wipe his board with Zealous Persecution, resolve a Jitte, and Waste his Inkmoth.
Round 5: Zach on Burn: 2-1
- Game 1: Unfortunately I got the pair down, so I can’t draw into Top 8. Zach gets me down to 4, but I stabilize with Jitte for the win.
- Game 2: I make a few Knights, but there’s too many burn spells for me to play around.
- Game 3: I basically get the anti-burn nuts – my opener has DRS, a Knight, and double Stoneforge. I tutor up a Jitte, but never even play it because I keep topdecking wonderful cards like Scooze and removal for his creatures. He never really had a chance.
Top 8 Round 1: Arjun on UR Delver: 0-2
- Game 1: Arjun’s another Goyf teammate who usually plays Storm, but decided to keep it fair today. Game 1 he tempo’d me pretty hard, and got to do cute things like flipping Thunderous Wrath and Cliqueing me in response to a Stoneforge activation.
- Game 2: I start off strong with a big Knight, but when he Submerges it in response to an activation my whole game goes to shit. I never really recover and he beats me with a Delver.
(For those interested in visuals, here’s a pointless picture of me losing to UR Delver.)
Losing so badly in the Top 8 was a little deflating, especially as an Elves player no-sir’d the split so I only won $15. On the upside, I enjoyed the karma of that Elves player losing his match. Likewise, Sean wound up winning the byes, so it was good to see a teammate come away with those.
The list felt pretty solid all-around. In other metas I wouldn’t run the Melira, and I’ll probably switch the Batterskull for a Sword of Something and Something. Might want a 3rd Zealous Persecution or Surgical in the board, but we’ll see.
I used the credit to pick up a Sword of Feast & Famine, then headed back to Austin. It was an easy drive that included a pit stop at Bucky’s for some kolaches to round out my terrible diet for the day, and listening to the new Gorillaz album (it wasn’t great).
Editor’s note: Stu indicates that if I wish to post this report, I must include a link to Battle for Asgard by Cannibal Ox.