08/16/2011 LI: "Magic 2012 Draft-Along"

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This thread is for discussion of this week's Limited Information, which goes live Tuesday morning on magicthegathering.com.


Pack 1, Pick 5


Firebreathing, Giant Spider, Stave Off, Brink of Disaster, Wall of Torches, Lava Axe, Stormblood Berserker, Tectonic Rift, Sutured Ghoul, Mountain



Pick: Mana Leak????

Hax.

(Seems a decent draft otherwise.  Although hmm, those AIs sure don't pick the Tormented Souls highly enough.)

Curious as to your justification for picking Benalish Veteran over Phantasmal Dragon in pack 3, pick 7. Also, for picking Armored Warhorse in pack 2 pick 5, but passing on a Grand Abolisher in pick 10.

Of course both these are moot questions, since a Phantasmal Dragon will never make it to pick 7 and a Grand Abolisher will never table. Still, especially in the case of the dragon, your choice in picking a decent but ultimately mediocre creature over a legitimate bomb, even a fragile one, is curious.
My draft was not that great. I opted for Doom Blade Pack 1 Pick 2 because it kept me open and does pretty similar duty as Day of Judgment - I had Judgment at the Prerelease and it was surprisingly underwhelming - good, but underwhelming.

As a result, I could stay U splash black to see what else would come. Turned out AIs don't want any green cards, so I just soaked up Runeclaw Bears, Elves, and Webs that no one wanted and ended up UGb. Definitely not good, but oh well.



Mana seems terrible, but so does cutting a Doom Blade. Oh well. 
Here's how my draft went, with comments on a few picks.

Pack1: This was actually card for card with yours, with much the same reasoning.
Sphinx of Uthuun
Day of Judgment
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Mana Leak
Divination
Disentomb
Plummet
Negate
Amphin Cutthroat
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Forest

Pack 2:
Arachnus Web
Aether Adept I didn't even give the Lawkeeper much consideration.  After Day, there wasn't much White that caught my eye, so I went with Adept to stay on color.
Jade Mage I really like this card, especially with Blue.  I think Blue pairs well with Green in this format when trying to slow the game down.  Jade Mage is one of the cards that benefits most from a longer game and excess mana, the strengths of UG.
Coral Merfolk Blocks.  Hooray. (Not that exciting)
Amphin Cutthroat
Divination
Coral Merfolk
Aven Fleetwing
Merfolk Mesmerist
Phantasmal Bear
Hunter's Insight
Gladecover Scout
Naturalize
Lifelink
Forest

Round 3:
Arachnus Web Hooray for going into Green!
Arachnus Web Double hooray!
Brindle Boar Not a great follow up, but a fine blocker to either trade or gain some life, stopping Bloodthirst either way.
Cancel
Llanowar Elves Pretty happy to get this to speed the mana up.  I'd prefer Rampant Growth, but haven't seen any yet, so an Elf will do.
Giant Spider There was a Fleetwing Aven here, but the Spider is more important at this point.
Phantasmal Dragon
Skywinder Drake
Brindle Boar
Turn to Frog I've never played with this card, but it seems alright against the mess of ground blockers drafted so far.
Divine Favor
Stave Off
Runeclaw Bear
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain

Here's the build:
1 Sphinx of Uthuun
3 Arachnus Web
2 Divination
1 Mana Leak
1 Cancel
1 Llanowar Elves
1 Jade Mage
1 Giant Spider
1 Aven Fleetwing
1 Plummet
1 Aether Adept
2 Brindle Boar
1 Phantasmal Dragon
2 Amphin Cutthroat
2 Runeclaw Bear
2 Skywinder Drake
9 Forest
8 Island 

I really like this idea for a column.  It would be helpful to see this more often, though I do wish it were possible with other draft formats besides Core Sets. 
I really hate splashing a third colour in M12 so I stayed UB after picking doom blade over day of judgement. Might not be the greatest deck but its the style of deck I like to play.

creatures
3x Tormented Soul
1x phantasmal image
2x skywinder drake
1x bloodrage vampire
1x aether adept
1x Cemetery Reaper
1x gravedigger
1x aven fleetwing
1x phantasmal dragon
1x spinx of uthuun

non creatures
3x doom blade
2x mana leak
1x dark favor
1x negate
2x divination
1x consume spirit

land
9x swamp
8x island

I don't really like ponder in draft, I definitely prefer divination. This is a fast format though so maybe ponder is better. I would be confidant sleeving this up in a draft, I think really aggressive starts would be difficult if I fail to draw control pieces but most of my non souls cards would trade for similar value.
Okay, first post on the site so here goes with my deck, fairly similar to the article's original. Key differences for me are I'm lighter on the white aggression early (-Elite Vanguard, -Gideon's Lawkeeper, - Stormfront Pegasus), but managed to pick up some harder hitters for a little later in the game, hopefully after a Day of Judgement goes down. (+Phantasmal Dragon, +Gravedigger). Also managed to grab another bear and a Timely Reinforcements. The duplicate turn to frog also serve as better removal in this deck since less of my creatures are stuck at 1 toughness, so these both warranted inclusion. One other thing of note is the final decklist drops down to 17 lands, this I do think is cutting it a little low but I'm not sure what to drop.

Creaturesx13
2x Phantasmal Bear
2x Pride Guardian
1x Grand Arbiter
2x Skywinder Drake
1x Phantasmal Dragon
1x Gravedigger
2x Aven Fleetwing
1x Assault Griffin
1x Sphinx of Uthuun

Other Spellsx10
1x Ponder
2x Doom Blade
2x Turn to Frog
1x Timely Reinforcements
1x Day of Judgement
1x Mana Leak
1x Mind Unbound
1x Divination

Landx17
7x Island
7x Plains
3x Swamo

Round 1:
Sphinx of Uthuun (A no-brainer, am I right?)
Aether Adept (Yeah, Doom Blade and Day of Judgment are really good, but I already know that I'm blue and Adept is insane. Moreover and more to the point, picking the Day locks you into the control strategy mentioned earlier, whereas Adept allows for control or aggro variants, and in M12 Blue has some sick aggro commons. Sphinx is still amazing in an aggro deck anyway)
Doom Blade (Two in a row is too good to pass up, and Looter isn't good enough to warrant staying on color)
Skywinder Drake (One of Blue's aggro commons. Note the Blood Ogre and move on) 
Stormblood Berserker (Bloodthirst is OPEN. As Steve said, beatdown is better than control in this format. Could take Sutured Ghoul or Mana Leak and go control, but...well, no)
Divination (Ponder is fine and all, but they go pretty late and I wouldn't really want more than one. Divination, on the other hand, is always welcome)
Goblin Arsonist
Garruk's Companion (Best card in the pack. Just hate draft it)
Tectonic Rift (Pretty solid as a one-of, good for aggro)
Goblin Grenade (Also great as a one-of, psuedo-combo with Arsonist)
Goblin Grenade (ALL. THE. WAY. Getting two of these this early in a draft allows you to draft around them)
Goblin Tunneler
Firebreathing (Actually pretty solid, I've found, particularly with the afore-picked Tunneler)
Manic Vandal
Forest



Round 2:
Warstorm Surge (Duh.)
Gorehorn Minotaurs (Geez, this is hard. Bear and Adept are awesome in the deck I'm drafting, but Minotaurs is simply best)
Chandra's Outrage (VS Divination)
Phantasmal Image (Only other option another Arsonist. This is better)
Goblin Fireslinger (YAAAAAAH Bloodthirst!!)
Incinerate (Don't enjoy passing another Warstorm Surge, but this is the right pick)
Slaughter Cry
Turn to Frog
Goblin Piker (For ze Grenades)
Phantasmal Bear (See? Blue aggro, and this consistently goes late)
Merfolk Mesmerist
Goblin Tunneler
Tormented Soul
Lifelink
Forest



Round 3:
Volcanic Dragon (Once again, duh)
Fireball (duh)
Goblin Piker (could pick Act of Treason, but I need fodder for the Grenades)
Phantasmal Bear (Struggled here. Arsonist is the other option, but Bear is just so good. It honestly probably would have been correct to draft the Goblin for Grenade consistency)
Goblin Fireslinger (HA! Sick.)
Goblin Fireslinger (HAAA!!! Would've been sick-er if it didn't mean passing a Volcanic Dragon)
Phantasmal Dragon (VS Hellhound and Pacifism. This guy is insane! Yeah, sometimes he dies to the combat trick, but do you really care that your opponent just used up a top-notch spell? Really, you just want to steer clear of Lawkeeper)
Stormfront Pegasus (Hate draft dat sucker)
Goblin Bangchuckers (Because the pack sucks and I might need an extra Goblin)
Cancel (VS Turn to Frog VS Reverberate. Probably should've taken Frog, and would've taken the rare in real life)
Divine Favor
Merfolk Mesmerist
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain

Deck:
Mountain (10)
Island (7)
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Fireslinger (3)
Phantasmal Bear (2)
Stormblood Berserker
Goblin Piker (2)
Phantasmal Image
Aether Adept
Skywinder Drake
Gorehorn Minotaurs
Phantasmal Dragon
Volcanic Dragon
Sphinx of Uthuun

Goblin Grenade (2)
Incinerate
Divination
Chandra's Outrage
Warstorm Surge
Fireball

Sideboard:
Goblin Bangchuckers
Firebreathing (2)
Cancel
Goblin Tunneler (2)
Tectonic Rift
Slaughter Cry
Turn to Frog

Even though I'm a little low on Goblins (6), I figure that Piker and Arsonist are obsolete enough to survive my opponents' removal and stick around until I decide to shove an incendiary device in their mouth and hurl them blindly towards my opponent.
17 lands to err on the side of no mana screw.
6 one-drops, 4 two-drops, 2-three drops, 4 finishers higher than that.
5 burn spells, 1 finisher enchantment, and a card draw spell.
Looks good.
Only change I'd make is to pick the other Arsonist over the Bear in pack 3.

Don't undervalue the consistency of picking Adept. More power can be tempting, even correct, but has a high potential to be costly.

I really hate splashing a third colour in M12 so I stayed UB after picking doom blade over day of judgement. Might not be the greatest deck but its the style of deck I like to play.

creatures
3x Tormented Soul
1x phantasmal image
2x skywinder drake
1x bloodrage vampire
1x aether adept
1x Cemetery Reaper
1x gravedigger
1x aven fleetwing
1x phantasmal dragon
1x spinx of uthuun

non creatures
3x doom blade
2x mana leak
1x dark favor
1x negate
2x divination
1x consume spirit

land
9x swamp
8x island

I don't really like ponder in draft, I definitely prefer divination. This is a fast format though so maybe ponder is better. I would be confidant sleeving this up in a draft, I think really aggressive starts would be difficult if I fail to draw control pieces but most of my non souls cards would trade for similar value.

Your deck looks good, and I agree with both your choice of Doom Blade over Day of Judgment, your assessment of Ponder, and your choice to not splash. Degrading consistency is such a bad idea.
I first picked Lawkeeper, and then went Doom Blade, Doom Blade.  P1P4, Blood Ogre is the the strongest at this point, then kept going red and black.

8x Swamps
7x Mountains

2x Doomblade
1x Chandra's Outrage
1x Incinerate
1x Fireball
2x Dark Favor
1x Goblin Grenade

4x Tormented Soul
2x Goblin Fireslinger
2x Goblin Arsonist

1x Stormblood Berseker
1x Goblin Piker

1x Blood Ogre
1x Cemetary Reaper
1x Devouring Swarm

1x Gorehorn Minotaurs

1x Volcanic Dragon

Round 1:Gideon's LawkeeperDoom BladeDoom BladeBlood OgreStormblood BerserkerDevouring SwarmGoblin ArsonistDisentombManic VandalTormented SoulGoblin GrenadeGoblin TunnelerFirebreathingRuneclaw BearForest

Round 2:Warstorm SurgeGorehorn MinotaursChandra's OutrageGoblin ArsonistGoblin FireslingerIncinerateSlaughter CryDark FavorGoblin PikerTormented SoulZombie GoliathGoblin TunnelerTormented SoulLifelinkForest

Round 3:Cemetery ReaperFireballAct of TreasonGoblin ArsonistGoblin FireslingerVolcanic DragonDark FavorStormfront PegasusGoblin BangchuckersTormented SoulBrink of DisasterPhantasmal BearLlanowar ElvesBountiful HarvestMountain
I also snagged the Doom Blade P1P2 and then the followup Doom Blade P1P3, but while pack 1 was a little weak for me, I stayed the course on UB and reaped the rewards.  My picks were:

Pack 1: Sphinx/Doom Blade/Doom Blade/Skywinder Drake/Mana Leak/Divination/Alluring Siren/Garruk's Companion (from a weak pack, because a 3/2 trampler T2 is a bit scary for me)/Negate/Amphin Cutthroat (not great, but a card I'm happy to table)/blanks
Pack 2: Diabolic Tutor (not great, but I have multiple Doom Blades and a late bomb and I didn't want Web here)/Aether Adept/Gravedigger/Phantasmal Image (a nice pick here)/Amphin Cutthroat/Divination/Coral Merfolk/Aven Fleetwing (another gift)/Goblin Piker/Phantasmal Bear (so happy to see this here - the deck is light on early drops)/blanks
Pack 3: Cemetary Reaper (this or Sorin's Thirst, but if I get to untap with this guy I think I'm way ahead)/Doom Blade(woo)/Consume Spirit (Woo2)/Phantasmal Bear (glad to snag another)/Aven Fleetwing/Aven Fleetwing/Phantasmal Dragon/Skywinder Drake/Arachnus Web(yeah, these drafters don't like green)/Turn To Frog/Brink/Stave Off/Llanowar Elves(?!)/blanks

And the deck shapes up like:

2x Phantasmal Bear, Coral Merfolk, Phantasmal Image, Aether Adept, Cemetary Reaper, 2x Skywinder Drake, Phantasmal Dragon, 3x Aven Fleetwing, Amphin Cutthroat, Sphinx of Uthuun; Mana Leak, 3x Doom Blade(!), 2x Divination, Diabolic Tutor, Consume Spirit

With this curve, I'll happily play 18 lands.  The deck isn't perfect - it has issues with other black decks - but it seems rock-solid to me and there's nothing not to like about that volume of flyers.
Don't undervalue the consistency of picking Adept. More power can be tempting, even correct, but has a high potential to be costly.

My draft was very similar to yours - by choosing to stay mono-blue with the Aether Adept, I was open to take the Stormblood Berserkers P1P5, and go into blue/red aggro.
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I'm going to reprint what I had to say about the draft viewer last night, in this thread now cause I'm really excited Steve took the oppertunity to go after this one for feedback week. Needless to say when Innistrad comes out this fall I'd enjoy hearing his thoughts on a simulated draft, but that might be hard cause we don't do anything but Core Simulations on dailymtg.

Anyways here's what I had to say last night again, spelling mistakes and all:

How are we not suppose to pick the Sphinx Pack one pick one? If you choose him I can't and wouldn't fault anyone for doing so. I even like it as a singleton for standard. However, when I look at the lack of white in the pack with a powerful card like the Lawkeeper it gives me a pretty oppertunistic area to force white. I end up taking a slew of weaker cards in pack one to force the white. Towards the end of pack one I grab a few goblins (cause there's nothing really left ot pick) and a goblin grenade.

Pack two I take the rare, and start to flesh out the curve with red and white. I get the deciding factor on pick three, the red removal spell? or the grand abolisher. in real life we know the abolisher is still valued $ wise, but I go for the removal and the computer lets the abolisher wheel back to me. We pass on the second warsurge.

It doesn't really look like a deck until we get the fireball out of pack three and then it starts to feel REAL good when we get the 7th pick pacificism. This pairs well with volcanic dragon and our curve is complete. I'd feel okay trying to outrace the Sphinx if it comes down to it now. And barring any hexproof creatures I'd feel okay with the removal we have for blue and white.

The only card it feels like i'd have missed from the white-red draft here is the griffin rider, cause i'm rollin with more then enough support cards to have made it a beefy 4/4 flyer.
Round 1:
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Blood Ogre
Stormblood Berserker
Devouring Swarm
Goblin Arsonist
Plummet
Manic Vandal
Tormented Soul
Fiery Hellhound
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Forest


Round 2:
Warstorm Surge
Gorehorn Minotaurs
Chandra's Outrage
Smallpox
Smallpox
Incinerate
Slaughter Cry
Dark Favor
Zombie Goliath
Tormented Soul
Zombie Goliath
Goblin Tunneler
Naturalize
Lifelink
Forest


Round 3:
Volcanic Dragon
Fireball
Goblin Bangchuckers
Goblin Arsonist
Reassembling Skeleton
Volcanic Dragon
Child of Night
Spirit Mantle
Goblin Bangchuckers
Tormented Soul
Brink of Disaster
Phantasmal Bear
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain

I picked lawgiver Pick1, Pack 1.  The AI drafters must be crazy though.  I've never seen maybe incinerates get much past pick 2, let alone to pick 6.
My initial impression of Steve's choices weren't too good, but it ended up shaping into a relatively decent deck, I must admit. Personally, I first-picked the Sphinx, went into BR and never looked back...

I posted my draft picks in the Limited forum (for reference)

It should be noted that this probably wouldn't have been possible against human drafters... The AI just vastly underrates Bloodthirst, Black/Red, and speed...
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My first pick seems a tad unconventional (or wrong) but I took Tectonic Rift, then the second pick Day of Judgement lead me down the road to drafting RW with a little bit of black as a third option, most of which only required a single B mana, so it could work as a splash. Also I focussed on Goblins when I could so I would reliably have sac fodder for gobby grenade.  At the "table" there was only one other red drafter, so I got passed plenty of red.

Here are my picks...

Round 1:
Tectonic Rift
Day of Judgment
Goblin Grenade
Firebreathing
Stave Off
Mind Rot
Goblin Arsonist
Demon's Horn
Kite Shield
Goblin Grenade
Fiery Hellhound
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Plains
Forest


Round 2:
Warstorm Surge
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Chandra's Outrage
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Fireslinger
Warstorm Surge
Pride Guardian
Warpath Ghoul
Goblin Piker
Grand Abolisher
Pride Guardian
Pride Guardian
Naturalize
Lifelink
Forest


Round 3:
Volcanic Dragon
Shock
Rootbound Crag
Lava Axe
Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin Fireslinger
Benalish Veteran
Griffin Sentinel
Distress
Tormented Soul
Divine Favor
Phantasmal Bear
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain
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I first-picked Sphinx, and I can't imagine any reason not to do so. (Unless you know the people at the table and they all hate White or something.)

It's a fast environment, but not Zendikar fast. It could be a single lone high-drop even in an aggro deck.

To me Sphinx's card text reads "You can't lose this game if you get to survive until the next turn, regardless of whether the Sphinx itself lives." (Well, the opponent might draw into a Sorin's Vengeace or something, but still...)

Taking the Lawkeeper here feels like the equivalent of taking an Incinerate over a Mind Control for the sake of "mana efficiency." It might become correct if you get a super Red Deck Wins curve, but how do you know what's flowing at this point? Taking the Lawkeeper feels like making the assumption at P1P1 that a smooth, flawless curve consisting of efficient white & blue flyers, Phantasmal Bears, Benalish Veterans and tempo tricks are going to be flowing my way, because I think that's what it takes for the efficiency of the Lawkeeper to beat out the raw power of the Sphinx.

I followed a path very similar to Steve's picks, but as others mentioned, I would have taken the Phantasmal Dragon. Also, I would have taken the Divination over Ponder because I don' t just want draw quality, I want draw quantity for laying out lands. However, 1 Ponder and 2 Divination might be better than 3 Divinations, although there's no way of knowing it would turn out like that in advance. In hindsight, going Black over White also makes sense.
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I admittedly made an absolute hash of this first time around, passing the DoJ (wrongly, I admitted later) reasoning that I had already put my left into white that I needed to ensure that person stayed out of blue. That turned out to be garbage reasoning. Anyway, I ended up playing an aggro blue-green.

When Drafts Go Wrong



Partial Walkthrough


P1P1:

sphinx of uthuun
Gideon's Lawkeeper
arbalest elite
gravedigger
bloodrage vampire
stampeding rhino


are all fine choices. I've listed them in order of immediate preference. In those instances I tend to ask if each player casts the respective card, who wins? In many respects, its the lawkeeper, since he can (by himself) keep all the others locked down, and of course he hits the table 6 turns (at least) before the sphinx.

However, the sphinx unanswered wins games by itself. lawkeeper wins games with another card. Plus, sphinx is more durable...

removal spells

wring flesh - kills GL
pacifism - stops SoU
doom blade - kills both
arachnus web - stops GL
fireball - kills both, but might have to wait a turn for SoU
turn to frog - likely to catch SoU only
shock - kills GL
combust - kills GL
brink of disaster - stops both
chandra's outrage - kills GL
crown of empires - stops SoU, limited effect on GL
incinerate - kills GL
plummet - kills the sphinx
stingerfling spider - kills the sphinx


Even if I take one of the white spells, I'm passing a white spell, so my left will be in white. I'm not passing any must-have blue, so I have that in its favour.

I take the sphinx.

P1P2:

Oh boy. Another set of great cards:

Merfolk looter
Doom blade
Day of Judgment
shock
aether adept
stampeding rhino

If I take DoJ, I might be in a fight for good white spells. I don't expect to get the staple removal for white, pacifism. However DoJ is exactly the sort of spell you want in a blue deck - one which resets the board against early aggro.

Merfolk looter however is extremely strong when digging for a killer spell like the sphinx, or the mana to cast it.

Doom blade is a great removal spell, but I will be passing good blue to get into black. That said, looter by itself isn't a good enough reason to be in blue. Its the sort of card you take when you already have a mind control.

In the end, I reason that I would not want to board wipe just because my opponent plays a lawkeeper, so it is between doom blade and looter. If my opponent has a doom blade, they are likely to play it on the looter anyway, so I take the looter.

P1P3

Holy Crap!

Merfolk looter
Doom blade
Thran Golem
shock
Benalish veteran
Giant Spider

My only solice right now is that my opponents are also having a tough time. If my opponent to my left has taken the next best card in the deck he will probably have taken white-white, which means he is just as likely to take the looter as the doom blade.

I think it is likely with so many packs to go that I will have a good head start on good blue, so although looter is preferable in many ways, I want to start staking out another color. I can forget white, and I don't particularly want red. I'm nervous taking the golem when there aren't any decent blue auras, and anyway doom blade kills golems just fine. I take the doom blade.

P1P4

Nothing remarkable, but a decent 3-drop in blue and red. Obviously, I take the skywinder drake.



P2P1

Nothing remarkable here. I'm kind of all over the place when it comes to colors. warstorm surge can be a beast, but I am not looking to splash red just for that. In the end, I take the card which shuts down my early drops.

arachnus web

At the moment I'm not really in green, and I want to pick up some good black.

P2P2

Another dilemma. Here we have a few choices that could work:

crown of empires
aether adept
phantasmal bear
drifting shade
stampeding rhino

In the end, the crown would 'beat' all the others on the list in a 5-way fight, so I take the crown.

P2P3

There's a lot of spirit mantles floating around and that is something to look out for. Meanwhile I am torn between green and black for my second color.

I can't help but think that if I switch into green now, I could still get the mana-fixing to splash for the doom blade. If I switch into black now, I'm likely to be in a weak blue-black.

I take the jade mage.

P2P4

Phantasmal Image is a no-brainer, but I note the lack of good black.

P2P5

Another pack with little to offer outside of green. That's it, my second color is green.

Sacred Wolf



P3P1

Another dilemma:

arachnus web
merfolk looter
giant spider
doom blade

I feel that my deck is shaping up to be an aggressive deck now, which is not necessarily where you want a looter.

I choose the second web.

P3P2

fireball
arachnus web
merfolk looter
giant spider
doom blade
shock

Somebody's got a great red-black deck.

I realise that my deck is trying to be aggressive so having a late game finisher is probably the best strategy.

fireball

P3P4

In keeping with the aggro theme I take the bear over the temporary removal spell.

P3P6

If I had another trollhide I would pick the golem. With only 2 packs to go I don't think I'll get that lucky, so I choose another hexproof flyer.

aven fleetwing

 






Sphinx of Uthuun
Merfolk Looter
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Mana Leak
Ponder
Trollhide
Plummet
Kite Shield
Amphin Cutthroat
Runeclaw Bear
Fog
Mountain
Runeclaw Bear
Forest

Arachnus Web
Crown of Empires
Jade Mage
Phantasmal Image
Sacred Wolf
Divination
Coral Merfolk
Turn to Frog
Levitation
Phantasmal Bear
Gladecover Scout
Wurm's Tooth
Naturalize
Plains
Forest

Arachnus Web
Fireball
Rootbound Crag
Phantasmal Bear
Aven Fleetwing
Aven Fleetwing
Phantasmal Dragon
Trollhide
Brindle Boar
Turn to Frog
Reclaim
Gladecover Scout
Llanowar Elves
Island
Mountain

Aggro Blue-Green

Creatures (13)

1 x Sphinx of Uthuun
1 x Merfolk Looter
1 x Skywinder Drake
2 x Runeclaw Bear
1 x Jade Mage
1 x Phantasmal Image
1 x Sacred Wolf
2 x Phantasmal Bear
2 x Aven Fleetwing
1 x Phantasmal Dragon

Spells (10)

1 x Mana Leak
1 x Ponder
2 x Trollhide
2 x Arachnus Web
1 x Crown of Empires
2 x Turn to Frog
1 x Fireball

Lands (17)

1 x Rootbound Crag
7 x Forest
8 x Island
1 x Mountain

Sideboard
Doom Blade
Plummet
Kite Shield
Amphin Cutthroat
Fog
Divination
Coral Merfolk
Levitation
Gladecover Scout
Wurm's Tooth
Naturalize
Brindle Boar
Reclaim
Gladecover Scout
Llanowar Elves



Had I taken the DoJ, then I would have ended up in Blue-White, and here's how that unfolded...

Me vs Steve


M=Me, S=Steve, otherwise the choice is the same or irrevelant

Round 1:
Sphinx of Uthuun
Day of Judgment
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Mana Leak
M: Peregrine Griffin S: Ponder

At this stage I am still nervous that white will dry up and that really weakens white as a second color. I also need creatures. The griffin is good as well as it is a very good defender, which I lack.

Mind Unbound
Plummet
M: Kite Shield S: Negate

I like negates, but I have found kite shield is better than you think. Creatures like gideon's lawkeeper and skywinder drake are suddenly out of fire range.

M: Demystify S: Amphin Cutthroat

No contest here. A sideboard card against trollhide, spirit mantle, pacifism, ice cage and mind control, often a 2-for-1, over a creature I will cut with just about anything mediocre. Also trollhide puts a big dent in day of judgment. Take it.

Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Forest


Round 2:
Arachnus Web
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Divination
Ice Cage
M: Stonehorn Dignitary S: armored warhorse

AW's color requirements means it is unlikely to be a 2 drop, and as a 3 drop it is only marginally better than a 1/4. However, for a deck that wants to stall this four drop will still do that for a turn even if doom bladed.

Divination
M: Pride Guardian S: Coral Merfolk

Okay, so I didn't know I would get a bunch more. However I think for a defensive deck this is a no-brainer. Pride effectively blocks two creatures (ie. if they swing with a 2/2 and a 3/3 I get to cancel both attacks). Plus with kite shield I can even block heavy hitters such as vastwood gorger. This fits a strategy that wants the opponent to load up for a DoJ.

Turn to Frog
Pride Guardian
M: Grand Abolisher S: Phantasmal Bear

Not even close. GA doesn't just shut down countermagic, but also Lawkeepers, opponent's combat tricks and EOT kills. That this wheeled is incredible.

Pride Guardian

Unlike steve, I won't mind running 3.

Pride Guardian

Doh!

Tormented Soul
Lifelink
Forest



Round 3:
Assault Griffin
Doom Blade
M: Plummet S: Divine Favor

I have seen one volcanic dragon go by and my best creature has flying. Plus if I need to go into green (eg. sengir vampire) then I can justify having two plummets and a web instead of dom blades.

M: Auramancer S: elite vanguard

I think it is here that our strategies diverge. I favor running pride mages in the 1-drop and waiting. I just don't think the vanguard is going to be threatening anyone much with this deck. The auramancer however could find a slot depending on what I draw.

M: Aven Fleetwing S: Peregrine Griffin

I already have one griffin and I'm not trying to build a griffin deck. A second five drop seems a little late in the day for me.

M: Aven Fleetwing S: Stormfront Pegasus

Again with the fast creatures, but I think its too little too late for that. I'd rather wait a turn to drop this one which can't be hexed and has 1 more toughness. With this and the auramancer I am now considering grabbing a few auras, should they come my way.

M: Phantasmal Dragon S: Benalish Veteran

Yes, PDiddy dies to everything. But if they have nothing, it kills in four turns. If they had a doom blade or a pacifism, it was dead anyway.

M: Spirit Mantle S: Skywinder drake

This was tough. But I have an auramancer and two hexproof creatures. Putting the mantle on a hexproof flyer is going to cause a real problem for an opponent.

Mighty Leap
Turn to Frog
M: Divine Favor S: Plummet

Both our other choices wheeled. Go figure.

Stave Off
Llanowar Elves
Island
Mountain



Final Deck - WUb Aerial Control

Creatures (13)
1 x Sphinx of Uthuun
1 x Skywinder Drake
1 x Peregrine Griffin
1 x Gideon's Lawkeeper
1 x Stonehorn Dignitary
2 x Pride Guardian
1 x Grand Abolisher
1 x Assault Griffin
1 x Auramancer
2 x Aven Fleetwing
1 x Phantasmal Dragon

Spells (10):
1 x Day of Judgment
2 x Doom Blade
1 x Kite Shield
2 x Divination
1 x Ice Cage
1 x Turn to Frog
1 x Spirit Mantle
1 x Stave Off

Lands (17):
2 x Swamp
8 x Plains
7 x Island

Sideboard:
Mana Leak
Mind Unbound
2 x Plummet
Demystify
Arachnus Web
2 x Pride Guardian
Lifelink
Mighty Leap
Turn to Frog
Divine Favor

Not as aggressive as Steve's build, and I've put the mana leak in the SB to start as I am fairly comfortable that I can handle resolved spells and would prefer to be tapping out post-combat. Against anyone with titans and fireballs, the mana leak goes back in.

Unfortunately its all irrelevant. We should have been in Red-Black bloodthirst.


Unfortunately its all irrelevant. We should have been in Red-Black bloodthirst.


BR Bloodthirst

Creatures (15)

2 x Bloodrage Vampire
1 x Blood Ogre
1 x Stormblood Berserker
1 x Manic Vandal
3 x Goblin Arsonist
1 x Fiery Hellhound
1 x Tormented Soul
1 x Gorehorn Minotaurs
1 x Goblin Piker
2 x Volcanic Dragon
1 x Goblin Fireslinger
1 x Goblin Bangchuckers

Spells (9)

2 x Doom Blade
2 x Goblin Grenade
1 x Slaughter Cry
1 x Chandra's Outrage
1 x Incinerate
1 x Fireball
1 x Reverberate

Lands (16)

10 x mountain
6 x swamp

Sideboard
Plummet
Manic Vandal
Kite Shield
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Slaughter Cry
Goblin Tunneler
Naturalize
Distress
Brink of Disaster
Firebreathing




I think this is the strongest deck type that can be made from the cards available but I would recommend a couple of changes:

- Goblin Bangchuckers (really, a 2/2 for 4 that has a 50:50 chance of killing itself, no thanks)
- Reverberate (while I do like this card, I think that it is better suited to a longer term strategy.  You want to draw creatures, play creatures, swing and repeat)

+2 Goblin Tunnellers (more fodder for grenades, fill in a very empty 2 slot and allow the Hellhound to go in for massive damage).

As always, just my thoughts.
I first-picked Sphinx, and I can't imagine any reason not to do so. (Unless you know the people at the table and they all hate White or something.)

It's a fast environment, but not Zendikar fast. It could be a single lone high-drop even in an aggro deck.

To me Sphinx's card text reads "You can't lose this game if you get to survive until the next turn, regardless of whether the Sphinx itself lives." (Well, the opponent might draw into a Sorin's Vengeace or something, but still...)

Taking the Lawkeeper here feels like the equivalent of taking an Incinerate over a Mind Control for the sake of "mana efficiency." It might become correct if you get a super Red Deck Wins curve, but how do you know what's flowing at this point? Taking the Lawkeeper feels like making the assumption at P1P1 that a smooth, flawless curve consisting of efficient white & blue flyers, Phantasmal Bears, Benalish Veterans and tempo tricks are going to be flowing my way, because I think that's what it takes for the efficiency of the Lawkeeper to beat out the raw power of the Sphinx.

I followed a path very similar to Steve's picks, but as others mentioned, I would have taken the Phantasmal Dragon. Also, I would have taken the Divination over Ponder because I don' t just want draw quality, I want draw quantity for laying out lands. However, 1 Ponder and 2 Divination might be better than 3 Divinations, although there's no way of knowing it would turn out like that in advance. In hindsight, going Black over White also makes sense.



This.  And the only truly difficult choice for me was Day of Judgment v. Doom Blade p1p2.  Honestly, DoJ is consistently awkward for me in limited because of the two sidedness of it.  Sometimes you do get off to an aggressive start, even with a slower UW flyers deck, in which case it is a dead card.  But given the aggresive nature of the format, I think there is more chance that it will be a bomb, and less chance that it will be awkard.  It gets the nod.  Also, I think Divination is a better card in limited than Ponder, hands down.  I also took Phantasmal Dragon.  I know people that first pick it consistently, so getting it that late, particularly when you are one short on mid-range finishers is just a gift.  Finally, I rate Pride Guardian a bit higher than probably anyone else in the world as I first picked it in the second pack lol.  There wasn't anything else in the pack and versus aggro decks the card is insane.  If you drop it turn 1 versus an aggro deck, and they don't have cheap removal or enough evasion, it presents scenarios where they literally cannot win.  I'd probably maindeck all three in rl, given how aggressive the format is.  I think it is better on the defense than Phantasmal Bear or Elite Vanguard and given that I believe there is greater than a 50/50 chance you will face an aggressive deck, and thereby be on the defensive, I'd maindeck them.  I'd rather have them G1 then sub them out if needed, then not have them.  

Just to see what would have happened, I went through the draft again, picking the Doom Blade p1p2.  I then went UB control.  IMO UB control is generally better than UW in this format because Black has a lot of cheap tools, Sorin's Thirst, Child of Night, etc. that are really good versus aggressive starts.  I got to run 3 Doom Blades, p3p1 was a Cemetary Reaper, got gifted a Consume Spirit, and the mana base was smoother, but other than that black wasn't too impressive.  There were a few more "dead" picks where nothing was good in U or B, which meant over all I had to run weaker cards. This confirmed my belief that UW was the better route in this particular draft.  The curve would be a bit wonky and the mana base tenuous, but the UW deck would have a lot of power, the ability to draw into it, and game against a wide variety of decks.  I  think you could 3-0 with the deck.    
Also, I just wanted to note that although RB bloodthirst is extremely powerful in this format I don't agree with some posters that we should have been drafting that deck.  The only indication that we should have gone that route was p1p2 Doom Blade, but even that doesn't lead us to bloodthirst as it goes in aggressive or controlling decks equally well.  Imo, the p1p1 Sphinx was obvious as was either Doom Blade or DoJ p1p2.  With that extremely powerful start to a control deck, I don't think it would make sense to abandon two really solid early picks for a very speculative sort of deck.  I think BR bloodthirst is overdrafted right now.  Additionally, from a personal standpoint I don't like the deck too much.  I've never had success drafting highly aggressive decks in limited unless I have significant evasion and significant reach elements.  Otherwise they have a tendency to fizzle out, especially in slower sets.  The core set is generally the slowest set out there, and even though M11 was a bit faster than average, and M12 is a bit faster than that was, it still isn't blazing fast.  I pretty much always draft controlling decks in limited, esp. the core set (even this core set) and this UW deck is precisely what I would look to draft.  Perhaps that's just personal preference though.
This looks like a draft where you committed yourself way to early and did not read the packs.  Red bloodthirst was very open, as signaled by a pick 5 (FIVE) Stormblood Berserker.  Also, Day of Judgement as pick 2 after just picking UU is a mistake (the Sphinx was correct though, it's a B-O-M-B).  One, DoJ isn't that great in limited, and it's probably the 4th or 5th best card in the pack.  Doom Blade or Aether Adept is the pick, and I can see justifications for either.  I would have picked the Blades pack 2 and 3, meaning that by pack 4 I really wasn't committed to any one color as the blades are easy to splash, and just because you picked Sphinx first doesn't mean you have to play him.  A U/R deck looked the most open, with blue controling the board so you can activate your bloodthirst guys.  Granted, its hard to read the tea leaves, because the entire draft shifted after you picked the DoJ.
I went with the lawkeeper over the sphinx for the first pick, felt good about that when I saw the DoJ, and then picked up a thran golem because I really like spirit mantle and figured I'd see a couple(snagged a second thran golem in pack 3 as well).  Saw a blood ogre I think in pack 4, and went for the scepter of empires, as it seemed there would still be some bloodthirst available(scepter is also a nice clock that's hard to kill).  Got rewarded with the stormblood berserker, but didn't pick anything bloodthirsty the rest of the draft.  Got 2 goblin grenades so I started snatching goblines up, the basic idea being get some cheap creatures out to keep the board busy, goblin grenade once or twice(or three times if I can reverberate one), DoJ if I'm at a creature disadvantage, and hopefully by that point I've got the scepter on the field by itself, a thran golem and an enchantment or the volcanic dragon in hand and enough land on the board to get them out.  I started grabbing a bit of green in pack 3 because I looooove plummet in limited and I also like hexproof creatures with spirit mantle on them.

My picks:

Round 1:
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Day of Judgment
Thran Golem
Scepter of Empires
Stormblood Berserker
Manic Vandal
Goblin Arsonist
Lifelink
Manic Vandal
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Firebreathing
Plains
Forest


Round 2:
Warstorm Surge
Grand Abolisher
Spirit Mantle
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Fireslinger
Incinerate
Divine Favor
Manic Vandal
Goblin Piker
Act of Treason
Pride Guardian
Pride Guardian
Forest
Lifelink
Forest


Round 3:
Volcanic Dragon
Reverberate
Plummet
Timely Reinforcements
Llanowar Elves
Thran Golem
Benalish Veteran
Spirit Mantle
Goblin Bangchuckers
Mighty Leap
Reclaim
Gladecover Scout
Firebreathing
Island
Mountain


My deck:

Creatures (12):

Gladecover Scout
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Tunneler
Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin Piker
Grand Abolisher
Manic Vandal
Thran Golem
Thran Golem
Volcanic Dragon

Artifacts (1):
Scepter of Empires

Spells (10):

Reverberate
Plummet
Day of Judgment
Spirit Mantle
Spirit Mantle
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Grenade
Lifelink
Incinerate
Act of Treason

Lands (17):
7 Plains
6 Mountains
4 Forests

As awesome as the Stormblood Berserker is, I left him out because bloodthirst isn't the focus of my deck, and as far as cheaper creatures go, I'd rather have a Goblin on the board to sac for a grenade before DoJ.

The lifelink enchantment isn't the best card, but it's a cheap way to get the Thran Golems going, and when you combine lifelink with flying, first strike, trample, and 5/5, well then I guess it's pretty alright...


Pack 1, Pick 5


Firebreathing, Giant Spider, Stave Off, Brink of Disaster, Wall of Torches, Lava Axe, Stormblood Berserker, Tectonic Rift, Sutured Ghoul, Mountain



Pick: Mana Leak????

Hax.

That's just an error in the article; there is actually a Mana Leak in that pack.

I admit, I couldn't pass up the author's first 2 cards, either. However, when I hit pack 3, I was looking at between Doom Blade and Shock.  I then had to ask myself what color did I like better. Black or Red.... so I went red. I think this ended up being a really good choice for me.

Shock
Stormblood Beserker
Manic Vandel
Goblin Gernade
Goblin Tunnler
Warstorm Surge
Goblin Bangchuckers
Act of Treason x2
Goblin Fireslinger x2
Incinerate
Goblin Piker
Volcanic Dragon x2
Fireball
Day of Judgement
Spirit Mantle x2
Gidron's Lawkeeper
Timely Reinforcements
Pacifism
Lifelink

Mountains x12
Plains x5

Sideboard
Sphinx of Uthuun
Skywinder Drake
Mind Unbound
Plumet
Amphin Cutthroat
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Phantasmal Image
Coral Merfolk
Turn To Frog
Phantasmal Bear x2
Merfolk Mesmerist
Divine Favor
Reverberate
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest

(I admit, if I could visualize the cards, I might be throwing in the blue... but I'm trying to weigh the advantage of another beefy flier over Day of Judgement....)
A bit light in creatures, but there's enough removal to get me through the game. Part of me questions not choosing the second Warstorm Surge that floated around, but I really needed the creature that had passed by me at the time.
IMAGE(http://images.community.wizards.com/community.wizards.com/user/blitzschnell/0a90721d221e50e5755af156c179fe51.jpg?v=90000)

I think this is the strongest deck type that can be made from the cards available but I would recommend a couple of changes:

- Goblin Bangchuckers (really, a 2/2 for 4 that has a 50:50 chance of killing itself, no thanks)
- Reverberate (while I do like this card, I think that it is better suited to a longer term strategy.  You want to draw creatures, play creatures, swing and repeat)

+2 Goblin Tunnellers (more fodder for grenades, fill in a very empty 2 slot and allow the Hellhound to go in for massive damage).

As always, just my thoughts.



Probably correct. I put bangchuckers in because I think it is better than it looks. With an open bangchuckers, would you cast a spirit mantle on your x/2 knowing it has a 50:50 chance of getting 2-for-0? I could and probably should side in the shield though. Plus I'd always take that roll of the dice against a royal assassin or a lawkeeper, which is another way of saying that if my opponent should play that creature there is a 50:50 chance they will lose it. Not great. Not as bad as it looks. But yeh, tunneler is probably the card here.

Reverberate... well, in a deck with two grenades and two doom blades it can be lethal (and you don't have to sacrifice another creature). I've also seen all those divinations, mana leaks and shocks go by so I'm thinking it won't ever be a dead card. Can even function as a counterspell of sorts - ie. play it against stave off to give pro-white to the creature my opponent is trying to give pro-red. But as I say, its mainly about the grenades and blades.

I'd swap out the chuckers but see how reverb played game 1.
I was click happy and didn't see the Sphinx pack 1 so I went with Lawkeeper. I thought I was going to be U/W/b but ended up with more playable black cards, although I really didn't have enough to make a two color deck. Having said that, I felt that the deck would be better overall and more consistent playing some very weak or situational white cards (pride guardian, lifelink, demistify) than it would be splashing blue or green for some mediocre fillers. So I ended up just B/W. Draft and deck build below.

Gideon's Lawkeeper
Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Stave Off
Peregrine Griffin
Alluring Siren
Plummet
Greater Basilisk
Demystify
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Forest


Round 2:
Diabolic Tutor
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Gravedigger
Ice Cage
Tormented Soul
Duskhunter Bat
Slaughter Cry
Dark Favor
Hunter's Insight
Grand Abolisher
Merfolk Mesmerist
Pride Guardian
Flight
Lifelink
Forest



Round 3:
Assault Griffin
Doom Blade
Serra Angel
Stave Off
Peregrine Griffin
Stormfront Pegasus
Pacifism
Stormfront Pegasus
Mighty Leap
Arachnus Web
Plummet
Gladecover Scout
Llanowar Elves
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain

Deck:

2x Gideon's Lawkeeper
3x Doom Blade
2x Stave Off
2x Peregrine Griffin
2x Stormfront Pegasus
1x Serra Angel
1x Pacifism
1x Assault Griffin
1x Gravedigger
1x Tormented Soul
1x Duskhunter Bat
1x Dark Favor
1x Grand Abolisher
1x Mighty Leap
1x Pride Guardian
1x Demistify
1x Lifelink
9 Plains
8 Swamp

IMAGE(http://stat.rumandmonkey.com/tests/1/6/5261/20802.jpg)
Round 1:
Sphinx of Uthuun
Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Mana Leak
Divination
Disentomb
Disentomb
Negate
Amphin Cutthroat
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Firebreathing
Runeclaw Bear
Forest

Round 2:
Diabolic Tutor
Aether Adept
Gravedigger
Phantasmal Image
Amphin Cutthroat
Harbor Serpent
Coral Merfolk
Aven Fleetwing
Zombie Goliath
Phantasmal Bear
Hunter's Insight
Kraken's Eye
Tormented Soul
Lifelink
Forest

Round 3:
Cemetery Reaper
Doom Blade
Consume Spirit
Ice Cage
Reassembling Skeleton
Devouring Swarm
Phantasmal Dragon
Skywinder Drake
Distress
Turn to Frog
Reclaim
Stave Off
Llanowar Elves
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain

Main Deck:
Phantasmal Bear
Phantasmal Image
Reassembling Skeleton
Coral Merfolk
Cemetery Reaper
Aether Adept
Skywinder Drake
Skywinder Drake
Phantasmal Dragon
Gravedigger
Aven Fleetwing
Amphin Cutthroat
Amphin Cutthroat
Zombie Goliath
Sphinx of Uthuun
Disentomb
Disentomb
Doom Blade
Doom Blade
Ice Cage
Mana Leak
Divination
Diabolic Tutor
Consume Spirit

16 Land

I don't post much anymore. 

First of all let me just say it's about dad gum time we had a walkthrough like this. Thank you! I have not posted in a while and this article kinda made me want to, just to let you know that I enjoy this type of article every once in a while.


I also first picked Sphinx, I however opted not to jump on doom blade p1p3 and went for looter. Forcing UW early allowed me to draft a decent control deck featuring two looters and two lawkeepers with decent flyers. I drafted awhile ago so I don't have a list. But I was quite happy with my pool. Interesting aside: checking the top picks at the end of the draft there were three Planeswalkers in our opponents decks. just something I found interesting. three of our opponents got planeswalkers that's kinda crasy to me.
i agree with every pick except divination over ponder, then i take jace erasure because UW mill is so playable thanks to day of jugdment

Round 1:Sphinx of UthuunDay of JudgmentDoom BladeSkywinder DrakeMana LeakDivinationMind UnboundJace's ErasureNegateAmphin CutthroatGoblin GrenadeGoblin TunnelerFirebreathingRuneclaw BearForest

Round 2:Merfolk MesmeristGideon's LawkeeperMerfolk MesmeristIce CageStonehorn DignitaryDivinationPride GuardianAven FleetwingPride GuardianGrand AbolisherPride GuardianGladecover ScoutNaturalizeLifelinkForest

Round 3:Jace's ErasureMerfolk LooterAct of TreasonMerfolk MesmeristAven FleetwingStormfront PegasusBenalish VeteranGriffin SentinelMighty LeapTurn to FrogDivine FavorStave OffLlanowar ElvesBountiful HarvestMountain



after i get 2 mesmerists i go full into mill and 1st pick erasure, maybe i should take tha assault griifin and hope erasure comes back.

2xerasure + divination, mind unbound, looter is nice. 3x mesmerists is great. then it's just surviving long enough with lawkeeper, pride guardians, DoJ and decent guys. I think it's a very playable deck 
Round 1:
Sphinx of Uthuun
Day of Judgment
Doom Blade
Skywinder Drake
Mana Leak
Peregrine Griffin
Siege Mastodon
Plummet
Negate
Goblin Grenade
Fiery Hellhound
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Runeclaw Bear
Forest


Round 2:
Diabolic Tutor
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Gideon's Lawkeeper
Ice Cage
Stonehorn Dignitary
Incinerate
Pride Guardian
Turn to Frog
Pride Guardian
Grand Abolisher
Spirit Mantle
Pride Guardian
Goblin Fireslinger
Lifelink
Forest


Round 3:
Assault Griffin
Doom Blade
Plummet
Timely Reinforcements
Aven Fleetwing
Stormfront Pegasus
Phantasmal Dragon
Skywinder Drake
Mighty Leap
Turn to Frog
Brink of Disaster
Stave Off
Llanowar Elves
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain



So, my draft went along the same lines, but the fork was at P1 P6, where I opted for a good creature in Peregrine Griffin. I didn't want to put all my eggs in Sphinx/DOJ basket, so I would rather play some strong creatures as well and this one holds the ground and air very well. I was surprised by Mind Unbound pick - that card doesn't seem that exciting. I figured I'd rather have another big bottom guy. Taking the white here fortunately enabled me to get two Lawkeepers in second pack P2 & P3 and then Timely Reinforcments in Pack 3. I was also happy to get a Phantasmal Dragon and earlier decided to go for a 4 drop in Aven Fleetwing over another 5 drop in Peregirne Griffin. I only had 1 4 drop at that point, but I'm still not sure about this pick, but as it has Hexproof I can perform tricks on it safely.
There's even some decent additional options in the sideboard against Bloodthirst decks.

DECK :
Aven Fleetwing
Assault Griffin
2x Gideon's Lawkeeper
Grand Abolisher
Peregrine Griffin
Phantasmal Dragon
Siege Mastodon
2x Skywinder Drake
Sphinx of Uthuun
Stonehorn Dignitary
Stormfront Pegasus
2x Pride Guardian

Day of Judgment
2x Doom Blade
Mana Leak
Timely Reinforcements
Mighty Leap
Turn to Frog
Stave Off

3x Swamp
7x Island
7x Plains

Sideboard:
Negate
Ice Cage
Turn to Frog
Pride Guardian
Spirit Mantle


Round 1:
Bonebreaker Giant
Shock
Shock
Blood Ogre
Stormblood Berserker
Ponder
Goblin Arsonist
Garruk's Companion
Bloodrage Vampire
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Grenade
Goblin Tunneler
Wall of Torches
Manic Vandal
Forest

Round 2:
Goblin Piker
Gorehorn Minotaurs
Chandra's Outrage
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Fireslinger
Incinerate
Slaughter Cry
Manic Vandal
Slaughter Cry
Act of Treason
Zombie Goliath
Pride Guardian
Tormented Soul
Lifelink
Forest

Round 3:
Volcanic Dragon
Fireball
Rootbound Crag
Goblin Arsonist
Goblin Fireslinger
Goblin Fireslinger
Fiery Hellhound
Blood Ogre
Goblin Bangchuckers
Reverberate
Divine Favor
Stave Off
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain


3 goblin fireslinger, 2 goblin arsonist, 2 blood ogre, 2 goblin grenade, 1 incinerate, 1 chandra’s outrage, 2 shock, 1 stormblood berseker


1 gorehorn minotaurs, 1 fireball, 1 fiery hellhound, 1 bonebreaker giant, 1 goblin piker, 1 volcanic dragon, 1 act of treason, 1 slaughter cry


1 goblin tunneler, 1 reverberate


16 mountain


I was wondering if it is really possible to draft mono red in magic 2012 drafts? Or it's always necesary drafting at least 2 colors?



Hey Steve, thanks a billion for doing the walk through! It would be great if you could do them more often. I started off on a similar route, but took a major detour in pack 3. The Fireball + double Volcanic Dragon seemed to good to pass on.

Round 1


Round 2
Show

Blood Seeker
Gideon's Lawkeeper   
Gideon's Lawkeeper   
Ice Cage                         
Stonehorn Dignitary    
Divination                    
Coral Merfolk
Turn to Frog
Pride Guardian          
Mighty Leap
Spirit Mantle
Pride Guardian
Goblin Fireslinger         
Lifelink
Forest


Round 3
Show

Volcanic Dragon            
Fireball                          
Act of Treason                
Timely Reinforcements     
Peregrine Griffin             
Volcanic Dragon             
Benalish Veteran           
Blood Ogre                    
Goblin Bangchuckers     
Reverberate
Divine Favor
Stave Off
Firebreathing
Bountiful Harvest
Mountain


This is the deck I ended up with. In retrospect, I really regret taking the Sphinx first; it might be worse than Skywinder Drake here. The lawkeeper would have done a much better job keeping me open, and I could've grabbed a couple more burn spells instead. RW or RWb seems like it was the way to go.

Lands
8 Mountains
7 Plains
3 Island

Creatures
Sphinx of Uthuun
2 Volcanic Dragon
2 Peregrine Griffin
Siege Mastodon
Stonehorn Dignitary
Benalish Veteran
Blood Ogre
Wall of Torches
2 Gideon's Lawkeeper
Pride Guardian
Goblin Fireslinger

Other Spells
Ice Cage
Mana Leak
Divination
Fireball
Day of Judgement
Timely Reinforcements
Act of Treason
Stave Off