Thursday, December 17, 2009

It can't Last - Can It?

For the first two weeks of the SciFi Genre Legacy Series, I’ve come out on top at the end. Both Sundays I’ve been 1st place once the dust settled. Is it luck? Skill? Something else?

I have to admit, it’s gotta be mostly luck. The Zoo brew I put together IS a very good deck – but it has it’s auto-losses. I’ve yet to face a countertop deck, and considering my entire deck is made of 1s and 2s, I’d be shut down pretty hard once someone got a CounterTop soft lock on me. That hasn’t happened yet though. So far, I’ve faced:

2 1st round byes - I swear I’m not manipulating Reporter. Heck, week two, when we only had 5 players, the other four decided to just start playing while I was out smoking, so I got the bye by default.

1 R/w Goblins – Is this typically a good matchup? Perhaps. It’s all about racing, and can really come down to who draws better. I do have a fairly solid draw engine in Dark Confidant and Sylvan Library – but really, I think it came down to the pilot of the Goblin deck. He was new to do the deck, having been handed it that morning by a friend, and on top of that, it was a more budget version, featuring Sacred Foundries instead of Plateau. That 2 life can be huge in a racing mirror like that. Plus, I do think I was the more experienced player – I don’t mean to disparage my opponent, cuz that’s not what I’m about, but he missed several good plays. For example, he had an Aether Vial set to 2 on the table. I targeted it for destruction by a Qasali Pridemage, and he just… let it go. Next turn, he draws his card, immediately plays the land he drew off the top, then cast a 2-drop Goblin. *shrug*

2 Mono-Green Elves – Actually, this is the same deck, and the same pilot – Roberto, both weeks. Again, this one comes down to racing, but Roberto has no removal, while I feature a plethora of burn spells. To win against Elves, you have to keep him off a critical mass of dorks, and all my burn and removal makes it pretty easy to keep him under control. Plus, Roberto has a bad habit of not blocking unless it’s going to kill him, opening himself up to a second-main Bolt to finish him off. He also kept a speculative hand with 1 Forest and 4 Llanowar/Fyndhorn Elves in one game, and I proceeded to burn away every single one of them, every single turn, while his deck declined to cough up a second land. By the time he found one, I’d curved out, and he had no hope. Roberto is a great, great player though – last week, we had a very epic matchup that had me scrambling and clawing to stay alive the entire time. I just barely managed to win it, and it took some of the very best playing I’ve ever done.

2 Mono-Red Burn – Like the Goblin matchup, this one is a race. Like the Elves matchup, it’s been the same pilot both times, Jeff, although the deck had been tweaked slightly from week one to week two. Part of my victories here was more Jeff being on tilt than any particular advantage I might have had – although again, my card advantage engines do help me race better in the long-game. Jeff also found himself having to use his burn on my creatures, instead of my face, which is not what his deck wants to be doing. Plus, Sulfuric Vortex helps me as much as it helps him - and when I draw more burn than he does...

That’s all I’ve faced so far – other decks that want to race with me. In all the matchups I’ve had so far, I’ve been better at racing than them, so I’ve won. So what happens when I finally face something other than another racer?

Control – I have to hope I can dump my hand before they can really start controlling the board. You don’t see much mass removal in Legacy, so my gameplan is going to have to be to overwhelm them before we get into the late game. Sylvan Library will help here – since they’re not putting much pressure on me earlier, I can actually afford to pay 4 life for an extra card here or there. Out of the board, you of course bring in the Blasts, because being able to counter something for R is just silly.

Aggro-Control / Midrange – I feel pretty good about these matchups. So far, I’ve managed to out-draw Eva Green in playtesting, although I’ve got to learn not to keep one-land hands against the more controlish variants. Merfolk scares me a bit, but I think that’s because Shoebox has more experience with piloting Merfolk than most of the Legacy players at SciFi have combined – he’s been playing Merfolk in one format or another for quite some time now, and he also draws stupidly well.

Combo – depends on the combo. Solidarity, as we’ve tested multiple times, simply can’t combo out faster than I can bash their face in. Dredge, I’m not terribly worried about – between the Moggs main and the Crypts, Relics and Teegs in the SB, I can do a decent job of keeping them off tilt long enough to bash face. Other combos worry me, though – ANT, Belcher (although there isn’t much I can do against Belcher, either it wins or it doesn’t), etc – I simply haven’t played against them, so I don’t know how to fight them properly.

So what happens this Sunday? Do I take the crown 3 weeks running? Or do I finally get bad matchups and have to work for my wins? Only one way to tell – come out Sunday and play!


The_Magi said...

I hope I get the chance to face you on Sunday! Are you ready for some hot Zoo on Zoo action? I think it would be an interesting "mirror", and fun to play.

Dartarus said...

Sure, I like gaining life!