FFfreaky Friday – Poison Control!!!

I am sorry that I have been talking about Limited so much. How about one more, and then probably a Top 8 tournament report next week, and then I promise we will cover some constructed. I want to talk about limited this week because I talked about fringe draft strategies last week. I ended up drafting a poison control deck recently, and think it was one of my most interesting drafts in a long time. The deck went back and forth, and a main theme wasn’t found until very late in the draft, but I still wound up with a very good deck. Lets take a look!

Pack 1 pick 1:


There are a few really good cards in this pack. Engulfing Slagwurm is a really good card but is very mana intense to grab first pick. It is not powerful enough to build a deck around, and yet would have to be considered when taking picks. Revoke Existence and Shatter are both great removal spells that I have taken first pick in countless drafts. The only problem is that Razor Hippogriff and Trigon of Corruption are both much higher in power level.

This is when one of the biggest dilemmas in Scars of Mirrodin draft comes up. I think that Razor Hippogriff is a slightly more powerful card. It is card advantage just like Trigon of Corruption, and also is a great beat stick. The only problem is that it limits what direction your draft can go. On the other hand, Trigon of Corruption will make it into more decks and it can be the centerpiece for a very good deck. It has more potential to be built around as well.

My pick:

Trigon of Corruption

Pack 1 pick 2:


This pack is not even close to as interesting as the last. There is a weak infect creature, a weak colored Myr, and Perilous Myr. Perilous Myr is a wonderful follow up card for Trigon of Corruption. It can allow me enough time to get the Trigon of Corruption online before I get bashed down. I don’t think this pick is really close.

My pick:

Perilous Myr

Pack 1 pick 3:


Now this pack is deep, with an abundance of support cards. Both Replicas make great creatures in the right decks and good filler in the on-color ones. Sunspear Shikari is another card that is very good in the right deck. All of these picks will restrict the type of deck I will be able to draft. This makes the removal the safest choice.

My pick:

Turn to Slag

Pack 1 pick 4:


Two cards stand out to me in this pack, Heavy Arbalest and Gold Myr. Heavy Arbalest is a very good card in most decks. However, it is on the slow side, making it kind of an awkward pick for what I already have. Gold Myr is very fast for what I want to be doing so far. I am fine with passing the Instill Infection since it would put me into a second colo,r and also will help put someone to out left into infect if they are forcing it.

My pick:

Gold Myr

Pack 1 pick 5:


This was a risky pick. It is also a very strong pack. So, what we have is Grindclock, Tel-Jilad Fallen, Glint Hawk, Trinket Mage, Panic Spellbomb, and Fume Spitter. Four cards have been taken out of this pack, and two of them are most likely uncommons. When I evaluate a pack, I almost always ignore the possibility of a foil rare. Sometimes I will put that into consideration, but it is much more consistent to not believe so. This pack screams that someone has taken a red card. There are still some very powerful cards, but almost every red spell will go early. There is no clear signal in this pack either.

I can take the Panic Spellbomb since it has the highest chance to be played, and early in drafting this format I would have taken that card. I used to think that having enough playables is more important than a slightly higher power level. It is even a two mana cycler. I have found that decks lose if they do not have something powerful to do. They can be consistent and do the same thing every game, but they never win if they can’t break away.

Trinket Mage is also a card I used to value much higher. The problem with the Mage is that it can really make you waste two picks. You can take the Mage and then a one drop over a slighly better card so you can give Trinket Mage value. This will also just make your deck more consistent and less powerful.

Glint Hawk, however, can be very powerful as well as dead. It is easier to draft cards around it since they are amazing on their own. Every Tumble Magnet, Contagion Clasp, and Trigon gets that much better when paired with a Hawk. These are also the cards you are going to pick up no matter what. They don’t make you waste picks to gain synergies.

Grindclock is not a terrible card, but it is nothing special. It will end a game around turn ten if it is dropped early. That is all it does. It puts your opponent on a very long clock. I don’t think its great but I have died to it before.

My pick:

Glint Hawk

Pack 1 pick 6:


This was just a bad pick. I should have taken Neurok Invisimancer here. It is a much more powerful card and will make the cut if I end up in blue. No matter what I take in this pack, I will not play it main, except for the unblockable common. I was just taking a white card out of the pack to gain value for picking up the color in pack two.

My pick:

Seize the Initiative

Pack 1 pick 7:


This pack is very weak except for one card. It is the rare that no one ever really plays with. I don’t really understand why. I know that it takes a long time to get active, but it will end most games when it does. Tower of Calamities does not go into every deck. It will go into many of the decks that I have been drafting lately: very slow, clunky, and all around random decks. It is a gem!

My pick:

Tower of Calamities

Pack 1 pick 8:


I will probably not be playing any of these cards. The strongest pick is Soliton. It takes away from the deck that drafted the Heavy Arbalest and gives me value if the equipment comes back around. I am not expecting the equipment, but I am just making a very win/win pick.

My pick:


Pack 1 pick 9:


I know that Engulfing Slagwurm not something to start a draft with, but it shouldn’t go this late. Seeing this card come around lets me know that the clunky green deck is open. I am liking this table!

My pick:

Engulfing Slagwurm

Pack 1 pick 10:


I don’t think I will be in blue and there is an off chance I will board in a Heartstoker.

My pick:

Vulshok Heartstoker

Pack 1 pick 11:


Early in most drafts, I think Saberclaw Golem is a slightly higher pick than Molder Beast. You can usually just pick up a few of each by the end of pack three and just decided which ones to play. They go around the table many times.

My pick:

Saberclaw Golem

Pack 1 pick 12:


My pick:

Flameborn Hellion

Pack 1 pick 13:


My pick:


Melt Terrain 

Pack 1 pick 14:


My pick:

Turn Aside

Pack 1 pick 15:

–> Island 

Pack 2 pick 1:


I think I will end up in a green/red deck. Even if I was in another color, Oxidda Scrapmelter is an insane card. The cards that will come back are probably Auriok Replica and Blight Mamba. There are probably two infect drafters at the table, and we will find out if there is a third. If there are more than just two, I will be set up for a weakish pack three. It is very important to find out since I am in one of their colors.

My pick:

Oxidda Scrapmelter

Pack 2 pick 2:


Golem Artisan is a very good card in most decks. So far I have a ton of slow spells, and can’t really invest many more early picks to that side of the curve. Slice in Twain is also a very good removal spell. Those are always important in these clunky decks.

My pick:


Slice in Twain 

I do not like seeing that Putrefax. It is much better than not seeing one before you play against it, however!

Pack 2 pick 3:


These decks tend to like any Myrs they can get. There is nothing in this pack worth playing, and any chance to play my spells a turn early is worth it.

My pick:

Leaden Myr

Pack 2 pick 4:


So lets examine this pack. There are three creatures that fly along with the best common infect creature. What did people take out of this? I can’t see any of these players in infect. One of them passed a Putrefax, so that makes one easy. So can Infect be open? Is Cystbearer good enough to run on its own?

Most people who talk about this format say that it is bad to play half infect decks. For the most part, I agree with this. There is a handful of very good infect creatures that people play different around though. Cystbearer is one of them. It is a very good way to get to the late game without really trying. Running out a couple of early infect creatures, even if it isn’t in a themed deck, will make an opponent play very strange and usually trade there early threats for yours.

Cystbearer is also very good at holding the ground in the early game. I will play a Cystbearer anytime I have a high curve and a decent amount of removal.

My pick:


Pack 2 pick 5:


Taking another Myr here is a great pick. There isn’t anything really worth taking over it, and it will allow me to ignore one in the future when there is a close pick.

My pick:


Iron Myr 

Pack 2 pick 6:


Ichorclaw Myr should not still be in this pack, even if it has a ton of good cards. I know there is a decent amount of white and blue cards, making it possible that there are several infect players on the table now. This means that it is much more of a threat to me than the other spells.

My pick:


Ichorclaw Myr 

Pack 2 pick 7:


Molder Beast is a card I could really value in this draft. I don’t know if I will play it, but I know I won’t want to play anything else.

My pick:


Molder Beast 

Pack 2 pick 8:


Snapsail Glider will be very good at defending the air. There has been a decent amount of fliers going around the table.

My pick:


Snapsail Glider 

Pack 2 pick 9:


Blight Mamba did end up tabling back, meaning that there are probably two people drafting infect.

My pick:

Blight Mamba

Pack 2 pick 10:


Never happy to play it, never sad to play it, always get one.

My pick:


Tel-Jilad Defiance 

Pack 2 pick 11:


My pick:


Moriok Reaver 

Pack 2 pick 12:


My pick:



Pack 2 pick 13:


My pick:


Golems Heart 

Pack 2 pick 14:


My pick:


Razorfield Thresher 

Pack 2 pick 15:

–> Island 

Pack 3 pick 1:


O_O!!!! Now this changes things up. Contagion Engine is such a bomb, and makes a me really want to be playing with infect creatures. It will turn into a win condition every time I draw it, if we have some guys getting the counters on them. It is an absolute bomb with Trigon of Corruption. Molder Beast is probably going to come back around, and I am probably not going to play it.

My pick:


Contagion Engine 

Pack 3 pick 2:


This is a very tough pick. Sylvok Replica is a very good card for a deck like this. It is a good piece of removal. Cystbearer, however, gives me the potential of having a decent chance at an infect sub-theme. This pick will strengthen a couple of the cards I have already picked up.

My pick:



Pack 3 pick 3:


This is another pick that is not even close. Having two Trigon of Corruptions will give me so many insane plays when I do draw Contagion Engine.

My pick:


Trigon of Corruption 

Pack 3 pick 4:


There are some great cards in this pack, and Galvanic Blast is ahead of all of them. It is very weird to see all of this red so late. Remember what happened in pack one, not seeing any of it. I think there were some very good cards in this pack. I’ll be on the look out for some sick bombs.

My pick:


Galvanic Blast 

Pack 3 pick 5:


It seems very strange to me that Shatter is still in this pack. I think that there are a decent amount of people drafting infect now. I don’t think I will see anymore infect creatures come around. This doesn’t mean I will not be playing my Cystbearers.

My pick:



Pack 3 pick 6:


The pack is very weak, so I might as well hate the infect creature.

My pick:


Contagious Nim 

Pack 3 pick 7:


Ding! Ichorclaw Myr is exactly the type of card I want to see. This now gives me 4 really good infect creatures to start the early game with. I finally have the game plan I have been wanting to pull off: start of with some early creatures that our opponents think they have to deal with, and they will not know what hit them in the late game!

My pick:


Ichorclaw Myr 

Pack 3 pick 8:


My pick:


Saberclaw Golem 

Pack 3 pick 9:


Yup and yup.

My pick:


Molder Beast 

Pack 3 pick 10:


My pick:


Kuldotha Rebirth 

Pack 3 pick 11:


Very interesting, late Carrion Call. I really would have liked to have seen what everyone else picked through out this draft. Very strange one!

My pick:


Carrion Call 

Pack 3 pick 12:


My pick:


Abuna Acolyte 

Pack 3 pick 13:


My pick:


Dross Hopper 

Pack 3 pick 14:


My pick:



Pack 3 pick 15:

–> Swamp 

Well, I definitely have a pile of cards to sift through! These are the cards I am for sure playing with:


This only thirteen cards. As you can see nothing in this pile will kill my opponents. I think this needs to change.

Poison creatures:


Non-poison creatures:




Tel-Jilad Defiance 

My curve desperately needs the infect guys. Carrion Call is not good in this deck since I have no way to pump them up. After I add the five infect creatures, I am left needing five more cards:


Leaving us with…

Now lets talk about what this deck wants to do. I know this is not what most people end up with, but I personally think this deck is amazing. It lacks a great plan against a deck with a ton of creatures with flying, but that is about it. This deck is trying to get to the late game as easily as possible. This is not an infect deck, so I will not be trying to make my main goal to deal them ten poison counters. It is a very good, depending on what happens.

The downside to this deck is that drawing a late Ichorclaw Myr can be very bad. It will, however, be better then drawing a random mana-Myr most of the time. This deck is another mid-range control deck with the potential to have a poison blow out game.

Round 1 – Rhoaen

I was very glad to get the opportunity to play against Rich Hoaen, since we never played on the tour at the same time. I kept a decent opener, with everything I want:


I started laying out my hand while he tried to get an aggressive force started. The turn I played Contagion Engine, he got his Rust Tick online. He tapped down the Engine to stop my shinanigans, and I was still able to kill off the rest of his team. The next turn was a painful one. Rich played Steel Hellkite. I still hadn’t drawn my second Forest yet, and didn’t before he was able to take them game. I had so many outs to the Dragon, but missed everyone of them.

Next game, I took the play and was able to do exactly what I set out to do with the first game. He ended up topdecking Revoke Existence to take out my Trigon of Corruption. This is when I dropped the Tower on him, and he was soon conceding to some random creatures.

Game three, he put me on the play. Since he knew I was all removal, he wanted the card advantage. This was not to be had, since my opening hand was:


His first play of the game was Palladium Myr, while I already had two poison creatures bringing the pain. I Sliced his mana accelerator and, put him at three counters.

He came back at me with a nice 2/4, and I played a Blight Mamba and got him to five counters. He accidentally played his Glint Hawk before he played an Origin Spellbomb. This left him without another 2/2, and might have been the turning point in the game, but I don’t think it really would have mattered. I attacked with all three creatures, since I had drawn a Tel-Jilad Defiance the turn before. He didn’t double block an Ichorclaw Myr and just made me invest mana into my Mamba. I knew that, since he did it this way, it was Dragon time.

He played the Dragon, I Slagged it, and Rich conceded.

Round 2 – The Great Dustini

He was playing infect. This meant I would have an even more insane matchup. This deck should be great against infect. I started off game one with some infect guys and traded away the table. I followed that up with Contagion Engine+Trigon+big green creatures. The game was over very fast.

The next game saw him mulligan to five. I had a decent hand with a Trigon, but the problem was that it was all I was going to draw. I had a few creatures, but nothing from my top end. He was able to dig out of his card disadvantage with a ton of more live draws and Corpse Curs. I never drew another relevant spell.

Would you keep this game three hand?


I think this hand is very good. There are fourteen lands and three mana-Myrs left in the deck. I just win once I hit 6 mana. I obviously kept it, and guess what? I missed all of my land drops and died.

It was very disappointing to lose this draft. Even though most of you will think this deck is garbage, I really think is is another way to draft this format. I have found that so many more 3-0s come from when I get in with the best archetype at the table. This means the busted Red/White Metalcraft deck or GB Infect deck.

The problem is that I also find that my decks suck when they don’t pan out and I try to force something because of what I started the draft with. Lately, I have been just staying open for as long as possible. This sometimes means as long as pick two of pack three. I hope you were able to see something new with this article.

As Chief would say,”Poison Control!!”

Brad Nelson

58 thoughts on “FFfreaky Friday – Poison Control!!!”

  1. You never considered the Indomitable Archangel p2p1? It seems pretty good, even as “just” a 4/4 flyer for four, and you at least have glint hawk/on color myr. Is glint hawk + trigon of corruption too slow?

  2. I really like this deck. The only thing I find funny is that you say Grindclock doesn’t do anything until turn 10 where it wins you the game (which I agree with) but then the next pick gladly take the tower and praise when you could easily say the exact same thing as the Clock about the Tower, it doesn’t do anything until about turn 10 where it wins you the game.

  3. @ eric, up until that point, like he said, he was assuredly red/green, and branching off to white for a mediocre flier is alright but it definitely isn’t sunblast angel or something absurd like that.

  4. Rak: Grindclock wins you the game on turn 10 if you have it in your opening hand, but it’s a dead draw on turn 10 unless you’re in a huge stall. Tower of Calamities (probably) wins you the game on turn 10 even if you drew it just the turn before.

  5. I think the deck is pretty good. I tried a RB infect the other day and it worked pretty well for me here’s the decklist

    3x plague stinger
    1x fume spitter
    1x painsmith
    1x skinrender
    2x corpse cur
    1x necropede
    1x leaden myr
    1x copper myr
    1x ichorclaw myr

    1x grasp of darkness
    1x instill infection
    1x arc trail
    1x shatter
    1x clone shell
    1x grafted skeleton
    1x sword of body and mind
    1x furnace celebration
    1x throne of geth
    1x culling dais
    1x sylvok lifesaff
    1x nihil spellbomb

    1 blackcleave cliffs
    9 swamps
    6 mountains

  6. Control is so bad in this format unless you get one or more rares like contagion engine, sunblast angel or carnifex demon. There is very little card advantage which also is a strike against control decks… God this format blows.

  7. I’ve had succes with half-poison decks before as well. It’s not nearly as bad as people seem to think to be part infect, part slow but big beatdown.

  8. The other day I got absolutely crushed by a guy who drafted a G/R deck featuring Molder Beasts, Ferrovores, and a ton of Perilous Myr, Spellbombs, and Necropedes. Basically, all my artifact removal was pointless as he walloped me for increasingly large amounts of damage with his beefy dudes, clearing the path and pumping them at the same time.

  9. Gabriel D. Celery

    Probably the most interesting draft I have seen lately. Quite unorthodox approach. This is one article I’ll read multiple times for sure.

    The funny thing: I would have taken Razor Hippogriff first without hesitation (yes I consider it that good), and would have ended up playing mono white metalcraft.

  10. Personally, I’ve drafted the tower a bunch of times and its generally good, because blue is usually open and you can draft control. Just grab a bunch of off color myr if you have to and ramp up to it. Also, been seeing volition going pretty late which bodes well for blue.

    I just hate that this format has no good card draw engines. Riddlesmith doesn’t seem to get it done most of the time.

  11. I think the key here is that infect creatures are monsters on defense. For the same reason that Cystbearer is an amazing attacker, it’s an even more amazing wall. It virtually nullifies your opponent’s ability to attack until they get some big dudes out. That makes it really good in a deck like this where you are just trying to survive long enough to get your late game plan together.

    In order to make that work, though, you need to have a few cards that can really kill your opponent when you get to that late game. The question is, how well can a deck like this function without bomb rares? It doesn’t seem like you can hold the ground with early infect and then hope to win on the back of a Molder Beast.

  12. @ sven — no. The myr can only “become blocked” ONCE during the declare blockers step — it doesn’t trigger for each blocker (it would have to say +2/+2 for each creature blocking for it to do what you think it does).

  13. Oh wow. Come on! This is like the worst example. Pack 1 you take not a single poison creature and then start with that pack 2? I won’t even bother elaborating why this is bad.
    Also the deck is horrible, the poison cards do nothing for the deck except being random blockers. You have 2 ichorclaw myr, 2 cystbearer and 1 blight. Who are you kidding? You aren’t poisoning anyone unless you randomly draw all of them. (Or with the random 2 perilious myr + removal draw. If he shattered even 1 of the myr, you would be cold) You realize that yourself, but the question still stands: why would one want to play them then?
    Without the rares you wouldn’t even have a gameplan.
    This is literally one of the worst decks I have seen. It would be thrice as good if the infect creatures were random dorks.
    (This comment would’ve been a little less aggressive if you didn’t sell the deck as “amazing”)

  14. There is a reason why Engulfing Slagwurm wheels. It is exactly what happened to Brad a classic example what not to do. Come on guys that deck was garbage, half poison, half not, ridicoulously high mana curve no acceleration. Obv if u have contagion engine u will win some matches, all u need is 1 poison counter, I beat an infect player with it after he played ichor rats, I did not have a single poison cards in my deck, but i poisoned him in 5 turns. But either way having 2 ichorchlaw myrs as a win condition together w engine is absurd.

    The deck was a lot of good cards put together with absolutely zero sense or synergy. I am sure Brad just put this crap deck online to laugh his ass off at people supporting the deck. Because there is absolutely no way this deck is any good.

  15. 10 forms of removal with 5 infects dudes and some beefy molder beasties mmm tastes odd but looks doable and has a good game plan overall.

  16. I should ask is this draft able without contagion engine, or should we look for contagion clasp very highly when trying to draft this? Engine seems very important.

  17. Jan, your entire post was retarded. You must be a better drafter than Brad Nelson, yes, that’s it.

  18. I’ve drafted control-style poison decks. They are pretty strong, even without bombs. Thing is, if the games go long then usually your opponent has some life gain that makes it impossible for you to win games with standard game plan decks. However, poison doesn’t care about that and you can still easily win.

    Also, cards like Untamed Might are very good in control decks. You get to the late game, have tons of mana, and just win with some dorky trampling dood or one poison guy getting through.

    Things I didnt like though: you had a strong RW deck going, had the opportunity to continue drafting strong white cards, but break into poison pack 2 in a pack with Cystbearer and Glint Hawk Idol. Dunno, but my experience is that glint hawk idol is one of the best cards in RW. No real reason to gamble with poison at that stage.

    Second, the Heartstoker seems like the right call for the Hybrid deck. In the hybrid poison decks you want your non-poison cards to be either removal (Perilious Myr), good defensive cards (Neurok Replica, Wall of Tanglechord), poison enablers (Heartstoker), or cards that win the game on their own (Slagwurm).

    Third, the Throne of Geth seems absolutely perfect for this deck. Its a tough call between that and Shatter pack 3 pick 5 but isnt even mentioned. At that stage you have a few infect guys, Double Trigon of Corruption, and Contagion Engine. Throne seems crazy with that…and it does almost the same trick with your molder beasts that shatter would.

  19. I think all of this calling the Player of the Year bad is kind of ridiculous–I mean, seriously, it’s that kind of thinking that you’re better than everyone else and have nothing to left to learn that explains exactly why you’re still grinding PTQs.

    That said, I while an interesting idea, I don’t really think this is a strategy to shoot for if you don’t have Contagion Engine.

    Also, maybe it was a bug that’s been fixed, but I definitely had Ichorclaw Myr trigger twice when I double blocked one a couple of weeks ago.

  20. Screw the haters, this is my favorite article on this site in weeks.

    I mostly play limited, and while this deck was probably flawed it was an interesting, new take on the format that really had me thinking about how I snap-evaluate so many cards without considering other paths. Awesome work.

  21. Good deck, solid draft. Terrific article.

    What makes this deck good is not the poison or the rares, but the 8 removal spells. The poison was just a sub-theme aimed to mislead opponents into bad plays and punish slow hands, but, most importantly, those Cistbearers can block really well when needed and give time for your slower cards to make an impact. Sure, Ichorclaw Myrs can be awkward, but as the author said, if you draw them early you can count on a trade, and if you draw them late it means you are still alive and so all is good anyway.

    It was a solid draft because you made the most out of your removal by finding value in underdrafted rares (Tower, Slagwurm) and by reading that the poison sub-theme was open.

    I don’t think “poison control” is a mainstream article, but there is value in it when opportunity arises, like all fringe decks, specially when your poison cards can double as reliable blockers to make your late game spells better. That was the main lesson.

  22. Nice that looks like something I’d draft. Everyone looks at my deck and goes ‘what’s this random pile’ and then it crushes. Go go good stuff.dek.

  23. My god, those of you bashing Brad for this deck have absolutely no idea what to do in Scars draft lol. I know that a number of people giving draft reports on this format are completely clueless, however Brad is one of the few that knows this format _extremely_ well. Unfortunately for Brad he wont be holding a trophy at the end of this weekend, because Ill be there 🙂

  24. @Robbie
    Retarded? This deck is absolutely retarded. Couple general rules for SOM:
    Never play half poison creatures and half non-poison in one deck.
    If you have plenty mana expensive cards try to ramp your deck,
    Try to have a gameplan against infect and metalcraft.

    The first rule is classic sign of a weak deck and bad draft, unfortunately u could see that from this deck.

    Unfortunately, it was Brad’s drafting mistakes and poor decisions that lead to this ‘garbage’ deck and apparently from this article you can see that there is a ton of better limited players than Brad.
    There are 100,000s of players on magic online, how do you know that Brad is the best? Ask Brad what his limited rating is on magic online, if he shows me a screenshot having a limited rating over 2050, I will sincerely apologize, but I seriously doubt that. Dustini is a great limited player, top 10 overall on QP points in MODO best in sealed, he has much more respect from me than some Brad Nelson (unless he shows me that 2050 rating, which I doubt :-)), and he even beat him obv. 🙂

  25. I think the deck was fine. Infect creatures are great against other infect creatures, he had the engine to get him the win in the late game.

    I think the biggest problem was that he probably should have sideboarded out the wurm and tower against the infect player since hopefully you win through the engine or molder beast rather than 2 really slow cards.

  26. Calm down people.
    Obviously Brad isn’t “bad”. He just drafted a deck, switched to poison and ended up with a infect/noninfect hybrid. He made most of it, beat rhoan with contagion engine etc and got all excited how his deck is actually awesome. Then round 2 he got crushed and felt he was unlucky since it was just “so good” when in reality the deck sucked in the first place.
    And I cannot fathom how people can agree that the poison CONTROL deck with 2 ichorclaw myr (best control card ever) and only 5 poison cards total is “amazing”. Those 5 (or at least 2) cards should apparently be something else. Get a grip on reality people.

  27. I don’t really think that general rules like, “don’t draft half poison-half not poison” have been proven true yet, with only a month worth of drafts to analyze. What is clear, from the report Brad has provided, is that he smashed R2G1 and kept respectable hands in G2 and G3. Losing to bad luck doesn’t mean that a strategy should automatically be labeled as bad.

  28. Poison + fatties is my favorite archetype. The opponent has to make bad trades and use their removal early, so they have nothing left for your Moulder Beasts and Acid Web Spiders. Add in removal and a Clasp/Engine and you’ve got the best deck at the table.

    This deck owns and Brad lost because of bad draws. All you haters have no idea what you’re talking about.

  29. I Think we are missing the point.
    I think its important to reflect over the article and try it, rather than just dismiss it. Keep the mind open for new draft-arch-types. Only in this way, we will become better at magic.

    “Even though most of you will think this deck is garbage, I really think is is another way to draft this format.”

  30. This doesn’t seem like the greatest deck in the world, but its a shame to see such close-minded folks bashing Brad’s limited skills because he ventured into an experimental archetype and was excited about it. Is anyone really interested in a primer on how to draft G/B infect or R/W metalcraft? Would we learn anything from reading Brad recite the conventional wisdom on the two most obvious strategies in the format? Isn’t it instead more interesting to learn about what might be a workable fringe strategy, just to have another potential weapon in our toolbox in the event that our draft goes awry?

    Also, being as he’s got a chance to win some $70,000 between the two championships in Chiba, I’m going to guess Brad is more interested in plumbing the depths of the format and learning, rather than crushing 8-4s. Read the article, adopt any content that seems logical to you, and move on. I don’t see any reason to bash Brad for sharing something interesting.

  31. Additionally, its not like he was trying to say that this is the best thing you can be doing in the format. If you read the conclusion, its not like he doesn’t realize that the all-in infect or metalcraft decks are the best in the format. This is an article about remaining flexible and making the most of your options, so that when you fail to get one of those decks, you can salvage a 2-1 rather than an 0-3

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  33. If you think this deck is bad, you’re clueless. If you think Brad is bad, you’re clueless. Just try thinking with an open mind for once. I know, i know you’ve never done it before but its pretty awesome, trust me.

    Thx Brad! Your articles are some of the best out there.

  34. i just don’t get it, this deck looks god awful. Why play like randomly 6 poison creatures in a control deck…

  35. Because they block well and fill in his curve. And if you get 1 poison counter on the opponent then contagion engine can get there.

  36. Anyone who didn’t understand why the poison creatures were chosen and played is a stone-cold retard who deserves to continue endless PTQ’ing … this is a control deck. It wants a simple and fast win condition once it’s dealt with the opponent’s threats. Poision kills in half the # of hits as regular damage does.

    It’s not rocket science … you morons …

    @Brad – great article and very insightful I feel it’s difficult to force this particular archetype as it IS totally dependent on the # of removal you have (and you have to have them). I haven’t seen you return comment in these feedbacks yet, but could you (either here or next article – GP report I guess so prob. not) explain the lack of consideration given to the early Paladium Myrs … ?

  37. I dislike some of the picks, coz you neither pick the best card out of the booster nor go for the “infect”/control deck.

    I have practiced good stuff decks that make card advantage a lot in draft and i am used to sweep most of them or at least to end up with a 4-1/3-1 record in our 14-20 players drafts at our local store. Of course there are some dorks about them but there are decent players as well, while the others are getting better.

    My picks would have been like – and the first picks i totally agreed to you, but only for 3 picks… :

    p1p1: Trigon of Corruption
    p1p2: Perilous Myr
    p1p3: Turn to Slag,
    this was when i felt like we are about to draft the same deck while i love to play good removal spells and 2-for-1s.
    p1p4: Instill Infection/Neurok Replica,
    I was stunned watching your pick, the myr. I mean: the trigon is good off-color as well, but we have 2 value cards better than a myr inside of this booster. And considering our whole cards we can go for a really good control deck, wherefore we need good blockers for early game and/or removal + card draw. And since Instill Infection is awesome in this draft enviroment and the stongest card in here + we have a semi-black card picked, which is good already but can turn to broken by committing us to black – at least as a splash – we have an easy pick: Instill Infection!
    p1p5: Fume Spitter,
    he is a decent card for a control deck and he is black and fits into our -1/-1 theme which gets better and better by getting more of them.
    p1p6: Darksteel Myr,
    except the Invisimancer theres not any card in we want to have here and against non-infect decks he can do his job quite well. The Propagator is much better but we dont have him in here.
    p1p7: Tower of Calamnities,
    this card is pretty good since it makes you win games at point X of the game.
    p1p8: Thrumming Bird,
    this is like the key card for this deck, while he improves all cards we picked before and we still might get some Tangle Angler splashed or Tumble Magnets for our deck. And picking up some Steady Progresses later on turns this deck into a >Machine of Destruction<!
    I like to build my decks around the blue color, having black, green or red as second main color and splashing for one or – when playing green as 2nd main color – both of the other colors.

    Here i want to post the decks i won 2 of the last 3 drafts with; most ppl would say that they are unconventional but they are the way i like my decks to play on the draw in 90% of the matchups.

    This is the deck list from friday, 2 days ago:

    3 Horizon Spellbomb
    2 Iron Myr (yes, they fit into this deck)
    1 Copper Myr
    1 Thrumming Bird
    1 Perilous Myr
    1 Arc Trail
    1 Disperse
    1 Cystbearer
    1 Tumble Magnet
    2 Sylvok Replica
    1 Arrest
    1 Myr Propagator
    3 Corpse Cur
    1 Tangle Angler
    1 Oxidda Scrapmelter
    1 Sky-Eel School
    1 Volition Reins
    1 Genesis Wave

    1 Plains
    1 Mountain
    7 Forest
    7 Island

    When the draft began i was not like forcing this deck, it happened. My first picks were:
    Chimeric Mass, Iron Myr, Sylvok Replica, Tangle Angler,… I picked all of the other infect guys in booster 2 and 3, when i didnt want to pass the first Corpse Cur because there was nothing in i wanted.I picked the 2nd one immediatly and hoped for a 3rd one to make them playable for recursion even in a non-infect deck.

    The deck i drafted 2 drafts before:

    2 Thrumming Bird
    1 Fume Spitter
    1 Grasp of Darkness
    1 Tower of Calamnity
    1 Instill Infection
    2 Steady Progress
    1 Carnifex Demon
    2 Tumble Magnets
    1 Trigon of Corruption
    2 Plated Seastrider
    1 Neurok Replica
    1 Trinket Mage
    1 Golden Urn
    1 Lumengrid Drake
    1 Horizon Spellbomb
    1 tangle Angler
    1 Disperse
    1 Throne of Geth(another one in the side board, where i had another Moriok Replica against infect)

    2 Forest
    8 Island
    7 Swamp

    After picking the Trigon of Corruption, Tangle Angler and a Tumble Magnet i decided to go for this combo deck. I had all games like taking 30 min each, killing my opponent with either the demon or a 1/4 or 1/1 over 20 turns… against the life staff…
    It didn't need the entire game to know my opponent wasn't capable of winning anymore; i just needed to wait for 20 turns to strike him down 🙂

    I don't get people who say this draft format provides two different archetypes only because there are so many kind of decks you can build.
    It is difficult to draft and there are a lot of tough decisions to make but this is exactly what needs your skill! So people who say that this format sux are most likely bad players since there hasnt been any draft format yet that was as broadly equipped as SOM-draft is.

  38. Nah, this deck is ok+, nothing more. You try it against the other decks you’ve drafted and you’ll see. Half infect makes the deck worse even if it isn’t that bad. You could’ve 3-0ed, but I think you lose in the first round just as often. Half infect is NOT good. And that’s just the way it is.

  39. Sorry but can’t really left that draft pool effect anything I already know. P1P9 slagwurm. That right there already tells me the quality of people in the draft pool. Slagwurm is one of the best creatures in the format and fits in infect and non infect decks.

    The only cards that deal with him effectively are poor cards to begin with so never drafted highly.

    The players in your draft pool sucked.

  40. well nice draft, bad draw, too bad Mr nelson.
    for you trolls out there i think you need to learn more fundamental magic if you think brad’s poison creatures are bad

    ichorclaw myr: this guy is good by itself and can force your opponent to trade with better creature, also provide late game plan strategies (i heard poison counter + contagion engine are bad news)
    cystbearer: this guy is arguably the best common infect creature, you can attack with it or just let him stand your ground to stall your opponent onslaught.
    blight mamba: an infect regenerator? i dont think its a bad idea. this card maybe overrated but it is not a bad card.

    these infect creatures are utility creatures. you don’t need to play infect to draft them (if you pack is dry you can pick them and use them in you deck, unless the pack have better picks).

    well a good read Mr nelson, i hope you write more draft article ochoa styled like this.
    (ps: btw Mr nelson, your decklist is as messy as ever :P)

  41. If this deck was completely terrible I doubt it would be able to take a match.

    Just because he lost R2 doesn’t mean that the deck is automatically bad. Also, not drawing any more land after your 3rd would make it difficult for any deck to win.

    Obviously Brad could have drafted a ridiculous 3-0 deck, but went with this sort of deck to point out different possible options that are available in SoM.

  42. I would be white for sure and not green.

    In the end the deck is really slow, and decks like this tend to lose a lot to manascrew.

    You really need a shitload of lands and a lot of 5+ drops really define a “Bad” deck.

    But like everything in Magic, even this can win if your opponent is slow / doesnt have much removal / and you draw lands.

    However its still a good example that good players will win with very different decks.

  43. sick deck/article! i agree with almost all of your picks and i love that you are opening people up to new ideas and interesting synergies that they might not otherwise discover before doing well over 100 drafts! i think in pack 1 i would have snap grabbed the thrummingbird, other than that a+!

  44. like a fine deck, but infinitely worse without that Contagion Engine. Thanks for trying out new things!

  45. Good draft, good deck, good article. Thanks for writing; I hope you don’t get put off by some of the moronic comments on here. It would probably bug me if I were in your shoes.

  46. Brad J. Nelson
    limited 2108 rating….
    pro tour 2010, 1’s across the board…

    The deck was unconventional, and it did win a match against a decent opponent. The deck I ended up drafting in my last FNM was a Barrage Ogre/Molder beast deck with 2 cystbearers to serve as early wall purposes. These type of decks are fun to play, and don’t fit into the normal idea of what is correct to draft or play in this format.

    Loved the article, keep them up!

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