Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Repack Walk Through- Week 6

Wow, here we are in Week 6 of the repack Walk Through. Each week I crack a repack, and do a walk through of the contents. I've seen these sort of draft walk through done a lot of different ways, but in my mind, there is one critical question to ask about every card. Should this wheel and why? I use a three point system to analyze a pack  In a "normal" pack, there should be 5 cards of each grade in them.

1) Shouldn't Wheel- these are the best cards in the pack, and should be scooped up before the pack comes back around. Your first pick should almost always come from this group, since odds are you shouldn't see any of them again. If one of these does come back around, and it still fits your developing plan, it's almost a sure thing to pick up on the wheel. One of these coming around may also indicate an open color, or deck strategy, and always worth giving a little thought to.

2) May Wheel-I put these at a 50/50 to wheel. your second pick in the pack will usually come from this group, since the #1 in the pack should already be gone. This group will tell you more about the other decks forming at the table then any other source of information. When the pack wheels around to you in pick nine, there should only be two cards from his group left, picks 9 and 10. The three that are already gone tell you a lot about the "best decks" being built by players 6, 7, and 8. Like wise the card you don't pick, will give you a clue to the "best deck" to be built by the player in position 2. This for all intensive purposes gives you a peek at 4 other decks being constructed. Counting your own deck, this gives you some degree of contrived knowledge about 5 out of 8 decks. If you do this type of thinking for all three packs int he draft, in addition to having perfect knowledge of your deck, you have had 3 peeks at 2 decks (positions 2, and 8), 2 peeks at 2 decks (positions 6, and 7), and one peek at 2 additional decks (positions 3, and 4). It's not a perfect world, and certainly as much art as science, but that is a lot of potential information. Since Repack is main deck mod, you should have a good idea of what you may face against nearly any other player at the table.

3) Should Wheel- This is the crap of the crap. If it wheels, it's exactly what I expected, and increases the likeliness of the predictions made from group 2. If it doesn't it makes things a bit more interesting. In essence it tells me that one or more persons isn't building their "best deck" instead making sub-optimal picks. In this case you are much more likely to have four "bester" decks, those that benefited from better then expected late picks, and then four "worster" decks, those making bad picks, or getting the shaft as others jump on cards expected for their "best" deck.

Pale Moon 3
Esper Battlemage 2
Puppet Conjurer 2
Air Elemental 1
Tolarian Winds 2
Abandoned Outpost 3
Horned Turtle 1
Healing Salve 2
Samite Healer 3
Horseshoe Crab 1
Spitting Earth 2
Weed-Pruner Poplar 1
Sparkmage Apprentice 3
Veteran Armorsmith 2
Grave Digger 2

This is not the sort of pack an organizer really wants to see. it's strng power level, and color skew, is going to create some odd draft scenarios. In my mind the clear strongest card int he pack is the Air Elemental. The problem is that 2/3 of the other top picks here are also blue, nearly insuring that you will spend the rest of the draft fighting for good blue cards. I'd really be tempted to take the Weed-Pruner, and le teh other players fight for the blue. Gravedigger would make a nice pick on the wheel.

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