Rise of the Eldrazi Draft #8
Pack 1 pick 1:
Induce Despair is one of the most powerful removal spells, but it suffers from consistency issues. It isn’t really good in certain decks like blue/black levelers because the average creature CMC is low which makes it more difficult to abuse. There are also times when it’s necessary to change your line of play because you need to keep a creature in your hand and that can lead to a less effective line of play than if the Induce was a different removal spell. Nevertheless, Induce is the one removal spell that doesn’t care much about anything regarding the creature that it’s going to kill (black/non-black, whether an Umbra is on it) except its toughness. We aren’t passing much to our left. There’s a Bala Ged Scorpion, Mnemonic Wall, Explosive Revelation, Lavafume Invoker, Aura Gnarlid, and Guard Duty. We’ll be able to live without most of those spells regardless of what archetype we go into and aren’t in any danger of being cut from black in pack two.
My pick: Induce Despair
Pack 1 pick 2:
We’ve got a few more options here. Narcolepsy is the best removal spell between it, Forked Bolt, Spawning Breath, and Guard Duty. Mammoth Umbra is the best non-removal spell. Umbras were underrated when Rise of the Eldrazi first came out, even Mammoth Umbra. It’s quite easy to lose a game when the Aura sticks to a flier. It’s better to take Narcolepsy because having removal is more important, especially at the start of a draft when people are trying to settle into their colors. If we get cut off from one color, we’ll still have removal instead of a Mammoth Umbra with potentially no removal. Unfortunately we are passing a few black cards (Cadaver Imp and Bala Ged Scorpion) and that might hurt us later on.
My pick: Narcolepsy
Pack 1 pick 3:
There aren’t many black cards here and is a bad sign for the Induce Despair. Dreamstone Hedron, Sea Gate Oracle, and Regress are the on-color cards to choose from. It’s not worth going into another color for Aura Gnarlid or Battle-Rattle Shaman because we have good blue options. Dreamstone Hedron is a good card, though generally misplaced in a blue deck because blue doesn’t ramp up into anything. However, being able to (slowly) draw a bunch of cards is always appealing. Regress is an excellent utility card and always worth having in a deck because it provides answers to the majority of the format’s themes (levelers and Auras) while saving creatures from removal spells. Sea Gate Oracle is a more efficient Dreamstone Hedron, although it doesn’t provide three cards; it does give you two (a 1/3 creature and one card) for three mana (compared to three cards for nine mana). If we settle into a blue/black deck, it’s likely to be a control deck with Mnemonic Walls and a slow kill or a leveler deck that plays more of a tempo game than the former. The control deck wants Dreamstone Hedron while the leveler deck wants Regress and there isn’t much of a crossover between the two decks. The happy medium is Sea Gate Oracle; it fits well into both decks. Regardless of which direction the deck goes, we’ll be happy with the Sea Gate Oracle.
My pick: Sea Gate Oracle
Pack 1 pick 4:
At least black is still flowing, though Bloodthrone Vampire wouldn’t be very good in our deck at the moment. Bloodrite Invoker is okay, but pretty easy to pick up. Skywatcher Adept is excellent because it’s an efficient leveler; it’s evasive. One of the problems with the black levelers is that you can’t always attack with them after you’ve leveled them up and then have to invest the full amount of mana before you can safely do so. Skywatcher Adept is different.
My pick: Skywatcher Adept
Pack 1 pick 5:
This pack is interesting. There are a lot of people who would just slam the Champion’s Drake, but I’m not one of them. Maybe I’ve just drafted too many bad leveler decks that can’t quite support a Drake and always get paired against the black/red removal deck (and promptly lose). Champion’s Drake suffers from consistency issues and needs a certain amount of levelers to ensure that you always have a dragon and aren’t stuck with a do-nothing 1/1 flyer. It’s true that it’s early in the draft and we’ll have a lot of opportunities to pick up more levelers, but there is another card to consider: Overgrown Battlement. By now most people should recognize that Overgrown Battlement is one of the best green cards and that seeing one this late should be a sign that green is open. Yes, we’ve passed a few green cards already (two copies of Aura Gnarlid, Wildheart Invoker, and Momentous Fall) which might hurt us in pack two. However, if the assessment of this late Battlement is correct, then we should be in store for some good green in the remainder of this pack and pack three. Another reason why we should strongly consider Overgrown Battlement is the lack of quality black so far in the draft. If we’re getting cut from black, then Champion’s Drake is going to be even less useful. blue/green isn’t the ideal color combination because there aren’t many overlapping synergies, but it is still possible to draft a deck of good cards and win without much trouble.
My pick: Overgrown Battlement
Pack 1 pick 6:
Gloomhunter is fine in a leveler deck because it fits into the tempo game that it likes to play. However, Gloomhunter isn’t enough to tie us to black at this point and we should consider the [card]Evolving Wilds[/card] because it will help us splash the Induce Despair if we end up blue/green.
My pick: Evolving Wilds
Pack 1 pick 7:
The one thing we know is that blue is definitely open and should stick with a good blue card whenever the opportunity presents itself. Halimar Wavewatch is an excellent creature and especially good in a deck that needs to stabilize the board quickly.
My pick: Halimar Wavewatch
Pack 1 pick 8:
There are a few late red cards, but we haven’t seen much red throughout the pack which suggests that this pack had a few red removal spells in it. Daggerback Basilisk isn’t very exciting and is likely to be shoved into the sideboard, but it’s better than Ogre’s Cleaver (which is generally too inefficient) because it’s decent against other green decks.
My pick: Daggerback Basilisk
Pack 1 pick 9:
My pick: Zof Shade
Pack 1 pick 10:
My pick: Sporecap Spider
Pack 1 pick 11:
My pick: Preys Vengeance
Pack 1 pick 12:
My pick: Reinforced Bulwark
Pack 1 pick 13:
My pick: Enatu Golem
Pack 1 pick 14:
My pick: Nighthaze
Pack 1 pick 15:
Pack one was a bit of a mess. It seems that we were led astray by the Overgrown Battlement because green was non-existent afterwards while there were various random black creatures (though it seemed like both colors weren’t very open). The good news is that blue was wide open and we were able to stick to it getting quite a few good cards. In the next pack we should continue to stick with blue and quickly identify whether green or black is our other main color.
Pack 2 pick 1:
Domestication is quite a card, though I’m finding it to be a bit overrated. Some decks can deal with [card]Domestication[/card] easily whether it be by putting an Umbra on the stolen creature or using some other pump effect (ex: Might of the Masses/Wildheart Invoker) to destroy the Domestication. Domestication is best in a leveler deck because you want to steal the first three-power creature that they play and create a significant tempo swing, ending the game before the larger creatures come into play. Narcolepsy is better suited for our deck because it doesn’t appear that it’ll be ending the game on turn six/seven and will be able to deal with almost every creature that gets thrown at us.
My pick: Narcolepsy
Pack 2 pick 2:
Frostwind Invoker is a good card and definitely worth taking. However, now is the time to try and define our second color. Ondu Giant will help immensely because it cements our ability to splash the Induce Despair and solidify a position in green. Additionally, if we pass all three blue cards, then it’s more likely that we’ll wheel one (See Beyond) when the pack comes back compared to the alternative.
My pick: Ondu Giant
Pack 2 pick 3:
There’s no blue for us here, but there is an Overgrown Battlement which is hopefully a sign that green will be open for the remainder of the pack.
My pick: Overgrown Battlement
Pack 2 pick 4:
Well, at least we know that red isn’t going to be open in pack three considering we’re passed Flame Slash, Heat Ray, Emrakul’s Hatcher, and a second Heat Ray. See Beyond isn’t an exciting card because it only provides filtering and not real card advantage. Guard Gomazoa is a better choice because it creates boards that are difficult for many decks to beat through while we develop ours.
My pick: Guard Gomazoa
Pack 2 pick 5:
We have enough fixing (Evolving Wilds and Ondu Giant) to support a splash with only one Swamp and could easily add another to support Last Kiss. Prophetic Prism would make a dual splash possible or give us the ability to support a broader black splash while keeping the number of Swamps at a minimum. However, it’s more likely that we’ll end up taking blue/green cards and not need the Prophetic Prism than it is picking up more black removal and being short on fixing (adding a second Swamp would be the obvious solution) considering how black was in the first pack.
My pick: Last Kiss
Pack 2 pick 6:
We don’t have many win conditions yet, and there’ve been a lot of Vent Sentinels floating around in the last few picks. Currently we have two Overgrown Battlements and a Guard Gomazoa. If one of the Vent Sentinels wheels, then we might be able to build some sort of four color Wall deck. The other off-color choice here is Knight of Cliffhaven which is another good finisher. Both cards require more fixing to support them than we currently have (especially along the lines of Prophetic Prism) and don’t seem feasible at the moment. However, the on-color options are underwhelming. Stomper Cub is mediocre in a controlling deck without Umbras because it just trades with something. We don’t want to “just trade creatures”; we want to stick a creature and win with it. Gloomhunter doesn’t quite carry enough weight to make it as a splash in our deck because it is a low-impact card that is bad on defense and will of little use to us in the games where we don’t have a Halimar Wavewatch, Overgrown Battlement, or Guard Gomazoa.
My pick: Vent Sentinel
Pack 2 pick 7:
Gloomhunter is more of an option in this pack the last one, but is still not an amazing choice. The problem with Gloomhunter is that it doesn’t fit well into a deck that is going to play long games. The only role that it plays well is an offensive one, and it’s important for all of the deck’s cards to be able to do so. Knight of Cliffhaven is the other choice, and like the Vent Sentinel from last pick, splashing it would require additional fixing. The upside to Knight of Cliffhaven is that it can handle more board scenarios than Gloomhunter can and is likely to have a larger impact on the game.
My pick: Knight of Cliffhaven
Pack 2 pick 8:
Shrivel would be a good sideboard card against the Gloomhunter deck as well as any token decks that we run up against. The other option is to take Soulbound Guardians to go along with the Knight of Cliffhaven that we have. We already have a Sporecap Spider and Guard Gomazoa to deal with the Gloomhunters in addition to our removal spells which means that addressing them further isn’t a big deal. If we manage to wheel the Vent Sentinel from earlier, it would be important to have as many good walls as possible.
My pick: Soulbound Guardians
Pack 2 pick 9:
If we had a bunch of Gloomhunters, then Gravitational Shift would be a good card to have. We don’t have many fliers and that makes Gravitational Shift too symmetric to abuse. We’ve got cards in every color, so we might as well take the best one and figure out what to do when the dust settles.
My pick: Guard Duty
Pack 2 pick 10:
None of the blue cards wheeled (Frostwind Invoker, Regress, and See Beyond). However, we are presented with an opportunity to take advantage of Totem-Guide Hartebeest when we consider the Guard Duty and two copies of Narcolepsy that we already have.
My pick: Totem-Guide Hartebeest
Pack 2 pick 11:
My pick: Repel the Darkness
Pack 2 pick 12:
My pick: Near-Death Experience
Pack 2 pick 13:
My pick: Emerge Unscathed
Pack 2 pick 14:
My pick: Phantasmal Abomination
Pack 2 pick 15:
Pack two was a mess. We saw a stream of green early and went into it only to see it evaporate before our eyes into nothing but Gloomhunters and some other black cards. Additionally, we didn’t pick up many blue cards while picking up some white cards. We have good cards, but they’re spread across four colors and in order to make a cohesive deck, we need to prioritize fixing much higher than we normally would. The draft isn’t over; it’s still quite possible to finish strongly and end with a good deck.
Pack 3 pick 1:
This is apparently where all the green cards have been hiding. Kazandu Tuskcaller is a bomb and will end the game by itself, assuming it survives.
My pick: Kazandu Tuskcaller
Pack 3 pick 2:
We’ve got a few options here depending on how close we want to stay to our base. One option is to play it safe and stick with a blue or green card choosing from Wildheart Invoker, Jaddi Lifestrider, Frostwind Invoker, or Halimar Wavewatch. Jaddi Lifestrider is the least powerful. We currently have quite a few ways to gum up the ground and few ways to win which makes the Lifestrider even less desirable. The Wavewatch is in a similar position as the Lifestrider thought it can eventually attack quite well. Wildheart Invoker would provide the best method way to create a game-winning board assuming we’ve got oodles of mana lying around to sink into it while the Frostwind Invoker would be better if we just want to pay five mana for a good threat and be done with it. The other option is to take Induce Despair and hope that we either 1) find more fixing _OR_ 2) cut our splash color down to one (black). Right now our deck is a bit soft to cards like Wildheart/Lavafume/Bloodrite Invoker. In terms of removal, we only have one Induce Despair and Last Kiss (depending on which Invoker we’re dealing with) to handle them. We’ve seen quite a few Invokers and considering the average game length that we’re in for, being able to handle them before they can be activated is important.
My pick: Induce Despair
Pack 3 pick 3:
We don’t have many ways to abuse Mnemonic Wall (two Induce Despairs and one Last Kiss). Additionally, the second Vent Sentinel from last pack didn’t wheel which makes the Wall less useful than if we had two. The same can be said for Awakening Zone. We don’t have anything to accelerate into or ways to use Eldrazi Spawn tokens (like Broodwarden or Wildheart Invoker). Regress isn’t as useful now that we have multiple copies of Narcolepsy, though it is still a fine card. Awakening Zone can create a board that is difficult for many decks to break through. If we have the opportunity to pick up anything else that makes Awakening Zone awesome, then we’ll be glad that we took it.
My pick: Awakening Zone
Pack 3 pick 4:
There are multiple cards that we want here. Bramblesnap is very good in conjunction with Awakening Zone, Last Kiss would round out our removal suite quite well, Prophetic Prism would help support a four-color manabase, and Totem-Guide Hartebeest would make our Narcolepsies come into play with much more frequency. We already have one Hartebeest and little fixing to support it along with a second splash. Last Kiss is the weakest black removal spell and would be worth taking if we didn’t already have two copies of [card]Induce Despair[/card] and one Last Kiss to go along with two copies of Narcolepsy. There isn’t much besides Awakening Zone to support Bramblesnap (we would rather have most of our other creatures untapped). Prophetic Prism would allow us to splash white and play the Knight of Cliffhaven, Totem-Guide Hartebeest, Guard Duty, [card]Emerge Unscathed[/card], and possibly the Soulbound Guardians that we already have in addition to filtering our off-color lands into on-color mana and vice versa to make our hands more consistent.
My pick: Prophetic Prism
Pack 3 pick 5:
Narcolepsy is the easy choice from this pack.
My pick: Narcolepsy
Pack 3 pick 6:
Two Time of Heroes would have been nice had we ended up in a leveler deck. However we will take our second Halimar Wavewatch and be happy with it. Nest Invader will have a much lower impact on the game because it’s only a 2/2 (and we’ve got no Spawn token cards to abuse) and shouldn’t be considered.
My pick: Halimar Wavewatch
Pack 3 pick 7:
Jaddi Lifestrider would be good with Awakening Zone, but a second Evolving Wilds is going to go a long way towards making a stable manabase.
My pick: Evolving Wilds
Pack 3 pick 8:
My pick: Nema Siltlurker
Pack 3 pick 9:
With four Auras (Guard Duty and three copies of Narcolepsy) it will be easy to support two copies of Totem-Guide Hartebeest when we consider that we’ve picked up two additional mana-fixing cards (Prophetic Prism and Evolving Wilds) to support white.
My pick: Totem-Guide Hartebeest
Pack 3 pick 10:
It’s funny that none of the blue cards came back from the pick in pack two that had three but the Frostwind Invoker from this earlier pick that had only two blue cards did.
My pick: Frostwind Invoker
Pack 3 pick 11:
Naturalize is good sideboard card for us and against us.
My pick: Naturalize
Pack 3 pick 12:
My pick: Hand of Emrakul
Pack 3 pick 13:
My pick: Ikiral Outrider
Pack 3 pick 14:
My pick: Aura Finesse
Pack 3 pick 15:
The third pack yielded some much-needed mana-fixing which made our deck come together. We’ve got a lot of good cards with a removal engine sub-theme and shouldn’t have too much of a problem doing well in the draft assuming we don’t get many awkward mana draws. There are a lot of cards to work with spread across all five colors and a moderate amount of fixing to support them which means that there will be many decisions to make during deck construction.
Game 1: We win the roll and choose to play last. Evil keeps his hand as do we (Evolving Wilds, Forest, Plains, Halimar Wavewatch, Overgrown Battlement, Narcolepsy, and Awakening Zone).
[T: 1] Evil plays a Forest while we [d: Frostwind Invoker] play our Evolving Wilds.
[T: 2] Evil plays an Island and follows it up by summoning a late Skywatcher Adept before passing the turn while we use our Evolving Wilds to find an Island of our own. [d: Island] We play our Forest and summon the Overgrown Battlement.
[T: 3] Evil plays a Forest and summons an Aura Gnarlid. [d: Ondu Giant] Our plans to summon and level our Halimar Wavewatch have changed slightly. Instead, we decide to play our Island and summon the Ondu Giant (fetching a Swamp) so we can block the Aura Gnarlid.
[T: 4] Evil plays a Swamp, levels his Skywatcher Adept (L1), and attacks with it [G: 18] before passing the turn. [d: Evolving Wilds] We play our Evolving Wilds and summon the Frostwind Invoker.
[T: 5] Evil plays an Island and casts See Beyond before summoning a second Aura Gnarlid and passing the turn. Before starting our turn, we use the Evolving Wilds to fetch another Forest. [d: Forest] We play our Forest, summon the Halimar Wavewatch, and level it up twice (L2) before passing. In retrospect, it would have been better to attack first with the Frostwind Invoker before playing the Wavewatch because Evil would be on a two turn clock and be forced to spend six more mana on his Skywatcher Adept (to buy himself another draw step from his point of view). Our plan now is to level up the Wavewatch three more times next turn, attack with the Invoker/Wavewatch, and out Narcolepsy on the Adept. We’ll follow up that turn by using the Invoker to give our creatures flying and hit for lethal. However, that plan uses more resources and gives Evil more outs than if we had attacked with the Invoker on this turn.
[T: 6] Evil plays a Forest and casts Training Grounds. Then he levels up his Skywatcher Adept (L2) and summons a Wildheart Invoker before passing the turn. [d: Narcolepsy] We level up the Halimar Wavewatch three times (L5) and attack with it and our Frostwind Invoker [E: 11]. Then we play our Plains and put Narcolepsy on the Skywatcher Adept.
[T: 7] Evil attacks with both Aura Gnarlids [G: 12] and summons a Champion’s Drake before leveling up his Skywatcher Adept (L3). [d: Narcolepsy] We can’t attack for lethal this turn so we decide to just attack with the Halimar Wavewatch [E: 5] and put Narcolepsy on both of the Aura Gnarlids. Evil concedes on his turn.
Evil choose to play last. We keep our hand (Evolving Wilds, Island, Plains, Skywatcher Adept, Frostwind Invoker, Totem-Guide Hartebeest, and Narcolepsy) while Evil mulligans to six cards; he is more satisfied with those six and keeps.
[T: 1] We play our Island and summon the Skywatcher Adept while Evil plays an Island and passes.
[T: 2] [d: Forest] We play our Evolving Wilds and attack with the Adept [E: 19] before passing. Evil plays a Swamp and summons a Champion’s Drake while we use our Evolving Wilds to find a Swamp as well.
[T: 3] [d: Overgrown Battlement] We play our Forest and level up the Skywatcher Adept (L1) before attacking with it [E: 17]. Evil plays a Forest and attacks with the Champion’s Drake [G: 19]. Then he summons an Aura Gnarlid and passes.
[T: 4] [d: Halimar Wavewatch] We play our Plains and attack with the Adept [E: 15]. Then we put Narcolepsy on the Aura Gnarlid and summon the Overgrown Battlement before passing the turn. Evil plays another Island, summons a Skywatcher Adept, and levels it once (L1). Evil decides to not attack with his Champion’s Drake and passes the turn instead.
[T: 5] [d: Last Kiss] We kill the Skywatcher Adept with the Last Kiss [G: 21] and attack with our Adept [E: 13]. Then we summon our Halimar Wavewatch and pass. Evil summons an Ondu Giant (fetching a Forest) and attacks with his Champion’s Drake [G: 20] before passing.
[T: 6] [d: Halimar Wavewatch] We attack with our Adept [E: 11] and summon our Frostwind Invoker before passing the turn. Evil plays an Island, summons a Daggerback Basilisk, and passes.
[T: 7] [d: Guard Gomazoa] We attack with our Skywatcher Adept and Frostwind Invoker. Evil decides to chump the Invoker with his Champion’s Drake [E: 9]. Then we level up our Halimar Wavewatch twice (L2) before passing. By leveling up the Wavewatch twice, we make it so that if we draw a land on our next turn, we can attack for lethal if he doesn’t have anything or just for six if he summons a flyer that we can’t attack through. Evil uses Naturalize to destroy the Narcolepsy on his Aura Gnarlid at the end of our turn. On his, he casts See Beyond and attacks with his creatures (Gnarlid, Giant, and Basilisk); we block the Giant with our Overgrown Battlement [G: 16]. Afterwards, Evil summons another Daggerback Basilisk (leaving Island untapped) and passes.
[T: 8] [d: Island] We play our Island, level up our Halimar Wavewatch three times (L5), and attack for lethal.
We win the roll and choose to play last. Evil keeps his hand as do we (Evolving Wilds, Forest, Island, Guard Gomazoa, 2 Narcolepsy, and Awakening Zone).
[T: 1] Evil plays a Forest and summons a Joraga Treespeaker while we [d: Overgrown Battlement] play our Evolving Wilds.
[T: 2] Evil plays a Swamp and summons a Null Champion before attacking with his Treespeaker [G: 19] while we [d: Prophetic Prism] play our Forest and summon the Overgrown Battlement.
[T: 3] Evil plays a Swamp, levels up his Treespeaker (L1), and levels up his Null Champion (L1). Then Evil attacks with the Champion [G: 15] and passes. [d: Ondu Giant] We play our Island, summon the Guard Gomazoa, and play the Prophetic Prism (two defenders for Battlement) [d: Halimar Wavewatch].
[T: 4] Evil plays a Swamp and summons a Zulaport Enforcer and Dread Drone. Unfortunately for Evil, his Null can’t beat through our Guard Gomazoa and he is forced to pass. [d: Frostwind Invoker] We summon our Frostwind Invoker and pass.
[T: 5] Evil plays a Swamp, levels up his Zulaport Enforcer (L1), and attacks with it and the Null; we block with Frostwind Invoker and Guard Gomazoa respectively. Before damage, Evil plays Might of the Masses to save his Zulaport Enforcer. Afterwards, Evil taps his Joraga Treespeaker to level it up (L2) and passes. [d: Emerge Unscathed] We cast Awakening Zone and put Narcolepsy on the Zulaport Enforcer.
[T: 6] Evil plays a Swamp and summons a Bloodthrone Vampire (no cards in hand). Then he levels up his Champion twice (L3) and passes. [1 Spawn token] [d: Skywatcher Adept]. We summon our Ondu Giant (fetching an Island) and Skywatcher Adept before passing.
[T: 7] Evil plays a Forest, levels up his Null Champion (L4), and levels up his Joraga Treespeaker three times (L5). He decides that he doesn’t have a good attack and passes. [2 Spawn tokens] [d: Island] We play our Island, level up the Skywatcher Adept (L1), and attack with it [E: 18]. Then we put Narcolepsy on the Null Champion, and level up the Skywatcher Adept once more (L2) (sacrificing one Spawn token) before passing. Frustrated, Evil concedes on his turn.
Evil chooses to play last. We keep our hand (2 Evolving Wilds, 2 Forest, Frostwind Invoker, Narcolepsy, and Last Kiss) and so does he.
[T: 1] We play one of the Evolving Wilds and pass while Evil plays a Forest. Before we start our turn, we use the Evolving Wilds to fetch a Swamp.
[T: 2] [d: Totem-Guide Hartebeest We play a Forest and pass. We don’t really want to use our second Evolving Wilds to fetch out an Island because we have seven of them in the deck. Additionally, we have a Hartebeest in hand already and don’t want to cut ourselves off of white mana; we would only have three sources left in the deck to find it if we did (Plains, Prophetic Prism, and Ondu Giant). We could preemptively play the Evolving Wilds and use it to get a Plains which would help our curve, but that would put us into the position of being unable to fetch an Island if it becomes absolutely necessary. On Evil’s turn, he plays a Swamp and summons a Beastbreaker of Bala Ged before passing.
[T: 3] [d: Skywatcher Adept] We play our last Forest in hand and pass. We could use Last Kiss to kill the Beastbreaker now which plays around Forest plus Might of the Masses, but we think Evil is not the best player because of his premature concession from last game and just won’t have anything. Sure enough, Evil tries to level up his Beastbreaker before playing a land and we kill it with Last Kiss in response [G: 22]. Evil just doesn’t have a land and passes.
[T: 4] [d: Ondu Giant] We play our Evolving Wilds and pass. Evil plays a Forest and summons an Ondu Giant of his own (fetching a Swamp) before passing. We use Evolving Wilds to fetch out an Island before starting our turn.
[T: 5] [d: Island] We summon our Ondu Giant (fetching a Plains). Then we play our Island, summon the Skywatcher Adept, and pass. Evil plays a Forest, summons a Stomper Cub, and passes.
[T: 6] [d: Totem-Guide Hartebeest We level up our Skywatcher Adept (L1) and attack with it [E: 18]. Then we put Narcolepsy on the Stomper Cub and pass. Evil’s Ondu Giant attacks and we block with ours. Then he plays a Forest, kills our Skywatcher with Induce Despair, and summons the Kozilek’s Predator that he revealed before passing.
[T: 7] [d: Halimar Wavewatch] We summon a Totem-Guide Hartebeest and put a Narcolepsy into our hand. The reason why we didn’t summon the Frostwind Invoker is because we need to be able to protect ourselves from an Ulamog’s Crusher. If we don’t draw a land, then we’ll get annihilated once (that would be bad) before being able to deal with it. On his turn, Evil plays a Forest, summons a Bloodthrone Vampire, and then empties his hand by summoning a Null Champion. Afterwards, he levels up his Null once (L1) and passes.
[T: 8] [d: Knight of Cliffhaven] We put the Narcolepsy on the Null Champion. Then we summon our Knight of Cliffhaven and Halimar Wavewatch before passing. Evil summons an Ondu Giant (fetching a Swamp) and attacks with his Bloodthrone Vampire [G: 21].
[T: 9] [d: Forest] We summon our Totem-Guide Hartebeest and get our last Narcolepsy from the deck. Then we play our Forest, put the Narcolepsy on the Bloodthrone Vampire, and pass. Evil summons a Zulaport Enforcer and levels it up twice (L2) before passing.
[T: 10] [d: Island] We play our Island and level up the Knight of Cliffhaven (L1) before attacking with it [E: 16]. Then we summon our Frostwind Invoker and pass (no cards in hand). Evil levels up his Zulaport Enforcer (L3) and attacks with it [G: 16] before summoning a Dread Drone and passing the turn.
[T: 11] [d: Guard Duty] We attack with the Knight of Cliffhaven and Frostwind Invoker [E: 11] before putting the [card]Guard Duty[/card] on the Zulaport Enforcer. Then we level up our Halimar Wavewatch three times (L3) and pass. Evil casts a Dread Drone and we know that we’ve won because he has no cards in hand and can’t attack for lethal with his creatures while we have Frostwind Invoker, eight mana, and eleven power’s worth of creatures. We are victorious.
Unfortunately I had to leave before I could finish this draft and didn’t have time to play round three. While some people voiced their disapproval of this happening before, it’s important to remember that the critical portion of this article series is the drafting itself (being able to read a pod, evaluate picks and card comparisons, and making rational decisions after analyzing all the factors that you notice) and not the games themselves. The games do have value and are included to give you an idea of how a deck will play out against other archetypes, but they are secondary in importance. While most of the drafts that I write about have and will include all the rounds that I play, this draft in particular was quite interesting which is why I chose to write about it in the first place.
30 thoughts on “According to Webster – Rise of the Eldrazi Draft #8”
You turned an apparent mess into something respectable. Also, you had at least one Evolving Wilds in the opening hand of all 4 of your games.
Much appreciated, as always.
This draft was indeed very interesting… which makes me wonder why you skimped so hard on the actual deckbuilding analysis part. Usually it’s a fait accompli, but not here, or if it is I sure as hell didn’t see it.
Nice draft, you made a couple early choices I would not have and it payed off. Always a good read, if you chose all my picks I would stop reading your articles lol, so keep it up!
Awesome deck! I was pretty worried after packs 1 and 2 ^_^ Thanks again for the write-ups.
This was one of your better draft reports in that you made a successful deck out of a mess of packs 1 and 2. Good job, and a good read as usual.
Thanks for being willing to post a draft like this where it didn’t go according to plan. It seems in Rise I am always getting cut out of colors but can never pull it together. This helped me see what I should be considering in that situation.
I like this deck. But man, those Narcolepsies were coming late.
I always enjoy reading these and appreciate you taking the time (must take a while to watch replays and write I assume). Maybe you should start alternating between write-ups and vids.
That seemed like an impossible deck to perform so well with. I’m willing to bet the round you missed was the guy with all the removal you passed, because none of your opponents had any.
“We don't have many win conditions yet, and there've been a lot of Vent Sentinels floating around in the last few picks. Currently we have two Overgrown Battlements and a Guard Gomazoa. If one of the Vent Sentinels wheels, then we might be able to build some sort of four color Wall deck.”
No, the important part of this sort of article is the card selection + deck building. We received zero analysis on card inclusion or the thoughts that went into it. I’m a big fan of this series; but this was by far your sloppiest work.
I am not surprised that pack 2 was, in your words, “a mess”, and that Green “evaporated into nothing”. Passing 2 Aura Gnarlids in the first three picks of the first pack will tend to have that effect on pack 2…. I’d have taken that Aura Gnarlid P1P1. Induce Despair is ok but I have found it to be unreliable (it’s often a lousy topdeck), whereas Gnarlid almost always has a significant impact on the board. And it was the only Green card in the whole of that first pack so it’s an excellent signal. Then you cab take Narcolepsy P2 (which you did anyway), which is a Gnarlid’s best friend.
must be nice to get evolving wilds and 2 out of 4 colors every opening hand.
I agree with Phil, there was a sweet aura gnarlid deck in there with ondu giants and some wildheart invokers. I definitely would have taken gnarlid first pack, then scooped up the invoker and battlement as a pretty good sign green is open
I don’t agree with Phil. Gnarlid P1/P1 would be a psychic pick. Sure, the deck was there, but on average Induce Despair is far better.
I enjoyed the draft and the picks you made….well I was the first to be like….”ooo pick me to play him cause I will wreck him!” I guess my skill level would have left me in Green/Red splash black (JUND) in my picks but woulda been funny to get housed by your deck O_o….thanks for the article though.
pack 3..fourth pick there was a flame slash and fifth there was a narco…nice 4-3-2-2.
Domestication vs Narcolepsy pick is always a hard one. I typically go with crowd sourcing on a hard pick like that. Given that both made the top 10 first pick draft winners list for Rise of Eldrazi, but Narcolespy is over three times more common, it implies that Domestication is really pulling its weight. Enclave Cryptologist is the only other uncommon to make the list, along side Drana who really should be Mythic, but wasn’t due to the fact she’s in the starter pack.
Did you end up splitting the finals?
Cool, thanks for the article. Yeah, I’m not going to complain about an article I’m getting for FREE. Great job turning a mess of a draft into a pretty kick ass deck. Do you think maybe you got kinda lucky in pack 3 though? All the fixing and Narcolepsies?
Wow, you turned a total pile into a winner. Good job on that! I only wish I could get those ridiculously late Proph Prisms and Evolving Wilds at my table…
To those talking about the Aura Gnarlids: Gnarlid is terrible unless you have the deck for it. Unless you have like a bazillion Auras, it’s just a Gray Ogre that can’t be blocked by Spawn. For those who would like to argue with me, watch Conley’s video from last week to see what happens when you draft a similar card (Kor Spiritdancer) with very few auras. Spiritdancer was terrible in Conley’s deck and Aura Gnarlid is worse in a deck that’s not built for it.
I wish I’d been the guy sitting to your left. Gnarlid, Guard Duty, Gnarlid, Wildheart, Repel the Darkness… I did something similar to that last week, splashing vent sentinels and staggershock, and went 3-0-1 (tied vs. Nirkana Revenant/Gul Draz Assassin).
I enjoy reading your reports, thanks for the work that goes into these.
Just for curiosity: why you had to leave? Second: did you split?
I know these questions are not comparable to the level of the skill used in this draft, but its all I can ask because I’ve got lost in the dust long long ago, as I would just try to go more linear here.
I would have gone U(b/w) levelers or Gx, I know you went Gu/x. I’m just saying that I would have gone deeper into green earlier and avoided white later if so.
Actually I am so confused that I would stick with my former 2 questions 😛
1st let me say I appreciate all the CFB guys for these walk through/draft videos, and please don’t stop because, hopefully one day, people will actually get better at drafting…
That being said…
Wow what a mess, this is the eighth draft for Webster and he still refuses to draft into an Arch-type that should be the strategy for ROE x3. P1P1 Gnarlid was a perfectly acceptable start and considering the Auras that came throughout the draft there was such a good Gnarlid Bant deck to be had there.
If his opps in the 2 rounds he actually played had drafted even slightly less terrible decks I don’t think he would have won either of the rounds. Especially bad was the round 1 opp since he obliviously drafted a deck that was just bad and is probably the reason Webster ended up with all the Narco’s he did, people should know by now that Gnarlids + Lvl Up guys is a bad mix in a draft.
Webster's 2nd opp seems to have gone to the same school as his 1st as he’s playing some mix-mash of Lvl’ers + Tokens deck which ends up being only slightly less of a mess than the 1st guys.
Additionally, where was all the removal because Webster's 2 opps sure didn’t draft it…0 removal/bounce from 1st opp, and 1 Induce Despair in 2 games from 2nd opp…!!!
Lyle wrote: Spiritdancer was terrible in Conley's deck and Aura Gnarlid is worse in a deck that's not built for it.
I was with you til the last clause. In no universe is Aura Gnarlid worse than a [card]Kor Spiritdancer[/card] in a deck with only 3 auras. At least the gnarlid can synergize with your opponents’ deck…Conley’s decision to run Spiritdancer, and to never side it out, was nothing shy of mind boggling.
This is a horrible article. You were so unbelievably lucky, how does this draft demonstrate anything other than luck. Infact, you shouldn’t have even bothered trying. I bet you were destroyed by the aura gnarlid deck in the finals that you passed. I fail to believe that you were this consistant. Shame on you ocho.
I’m sorta with guywhodraftedremoval, except not as mean. I drafted a U/R/b removal.dec with 3 heat rays, 2 narcolepsy, 2 flame slash, 1 induce despair, 1 last kiss, mnemonic wall etc.. along with a prism and evolving wilds to fix for the 2 black removal cards. It’s a little low on creatures as a result, but if any of them stick, they can get their (kiln fiend, 2 wave watch, 1 adept, frostwind, fireboar etc..).
I don’t disagree with moving in overgrown battlement and green, that’s the other way I might have gone with it, but leaving everything up to pack 3 luck is not how I like to draft. Yes you were going to get hooked up with green in pack3, but it was the specific green you got and the mana fixing that made the deck even possible. I wouldn’t have tried to splash white too, basically. End of pack 2 is a little late to be moving into a new color imo.
I think it’s better to have sent your own signals by that point, as sometimes other players are hedging their bets like you did, and no clear signals are even being sent.
+1 what Nolan said, taking guard gomazoa over heat ray is a big surprise
also, damn, I wish I was sitting 2 to your left in that draft. I feel like both you and LSV underrate aura gnarlid. Aura gnarlid decks are pretty sick, especially with people avoiding white like it’s the plague now. While I wouldn’t have 1st picked it either, if he came 3rd-4th pick, I may have swooped him up and moved in on it.
Coulda easily had 2-4 or more aura gnarlids, a mammoth umbra, a few totem guide hartebeests, 2-3 guard duties, etc..
Aura gnarlid has, imo, the best kind of evasion. Especially in an aggro deck or a race situation. He cannot be chump blocked, ever. If he’s big enough, they cannot stall or race you. While flying is generally great evasion, in some race scenarios they might have a few flyers to chump block your threat, and outrace you due to crack backs while they chump. So, you end up not attacking, the game stalls, and then they draw out of it with more flyers or something.
Granted, you need him to be 4/4 or bigger to reliably get in for damage, so you need some umbras or a bunch of guard duty/narcolepsy type auras. Sticking a snake umbra on gnarlid on turn 4 is pretty awesome though.
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