Grand Prix Kobe 2012 Sealed Deck Discussion

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Well, guys, here's the thread for the Sealed Deck building exercise from Grand Prix Kobe 2012! The card pool, for those who don't have it handy:


Shimmering grotto


Blazing torch


2 cobbled wings


Graveyard shovel


Inquisitor’s flail


Manor gargoyle


Mask of avacyn


Avacynian priest


Bonds of faith


Fiend hunter


Ghostly possession


Intangible virtue


Smite the monstrous


Thraben sentry


2 voiceless spirit


Deranged assistant


Invisible stalker


Makeshift mauler


Mindshrieker


Disciple of griselbrand


Markov patrician


Screeching bat


2 skeletal grimace


Typhoid rats


Walking corpse


Ancient grudge


Bloodcrazed neonate


Brimstone volley


Curse of the pierced heart


Harvest pyre


Rage thrower


Skirsdag cultist


Boneyard wurm


Essence of the wild


Gatstaf shepherd


Grave bramble


Moonmist


Mulch


Naturalize


Stromkirk captain


Avacyn’s collar


Chalice of life


Elbrus, the binding blade


Executioner’s hood


Bar the door


Break of day


Burden of guilt


2 gather the townsfolk


Hollowhenge spirit


Increasing devotion


Loyal cathar


Niblis of the mist


Sanctuary cat


Silverclaw griffin


2 bone to ash


Chant of the Skifsang


Stormbound geist


Thought scour


Tower geist


Black cat


Chosen of markov


Death’s caress


Gruesome discovery


Highborn ghoul


Sightless ghoul


2 spiteful shadows


2 wakedancer


Burning oil


Erdwal ripper


Heckling fiends


Markov warlord


Nearheath stalker


Talons of falkenrath


Wrack with madness


Ghoultree


Increasing savagery


Somberwald dryad



I want to know what you can make from this pile of cards! I'll be checking back in with some builds that the pros here at Grand Prix Kobe come up with, so keep checking in! Grand Prix Kobe 2012 coverage can be found at www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/article.a... 


 
We seem to agree on the general idea, with only a few choices differing.

This Deck was built in 0:11:42

Total Deck Size: 40
17 Lands
---------------
7 Mountain
10 Plains


11 Creatures
---------------
1 Avacynian Priest
1 Fiend Hunter
1 Hollowhenge Spirit
1 Loyal Cathar
1 Manor Gargoyle
1 Niblis of the Mist
1 Silverclaw Griffin
1 Skirsdag Cultist
1 Thraben Sentry
2 Voiceless Spirit


12 Other Spells
---------------
1 Avacyn's Collar
1 Bonds of Faith
1 Break of Day
1 Brimstone Volley
1 Burden of Guilt
1 Burning Oil
2 Gather the Townsfolk
1 Harvest Pyre
1 Increasing Devotion
1 Intangible Virtue
1 Smite the Monstrous

I forgot about the Grotto, which should likely replace a Mountain.

t~
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In case anyone missed it, the first pro suggestions are up now (I just found it after posting my own shot):

Tsuyoshi Fujita:



His explanation for the choices made here can be found on the Coverage page. I was glad to see I'm not the only one who thinks Green is a better second color than Red, but also intrigued to see the red splash for Burning Oil (a really good card, to be sure!) and Rage Thrower (a perhaps easier-to-cast finisher than Essence of the Wild. The exclusion of Brimstone Volley also strikes me as peculiar, and is not mentioned on the coverage site. I would also expect to see Avacyn's Collar in such a human-heavy deck.

Akira Asahara:

[deck]
7 Mountain
10 Plains

1 Avacynian Priest
1 Fiend Hunter
1 Hollowhenge Spirit
1 Loyal Cathar
1 Manor Gargoyle
1 Markov Warlord
1 Niblis of the Mist
1 Rage Thrower
1 Silverclaw Griffin
1 Skirsdag Cultist
1 Thraben Sentry
2 Voiceless Spirit

1 Blazing Torch
1 Bonds of Faith
1 Brimstone Volley
1 Burning Oil
2 Gather the Townsfolk
1 Harvest Pyre
1 Increasing Devotion
1 Intangible Virtue
1 Smite the Monstrous
1 Wrack with Madness[/deck]

I like this build a lot, too, although there are a few choices here that strike me as confusing. First, there's 41 cards. The second is the inclusion of (primarily) Harvest Pyre and Intangible Virtue (which works only with 3 cards in the entire deck) and the exclusion of Avacyn's Collar (which might make the Virtue a lot better). As with Fujita's deck, a short explanation can be found on the coverage site.
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Kraicek: I don't think compromising your mana-base to flash back Grudge is worth it. If you're playing green, you definitely need to include Ghoultree. Also, maindeck artifact destruction is seldom worth it.

I don't like the Break of Day, Intangible Virtue, Sanctuary Cat, Bloodcrazed Neonate or Erdwal Ripper (especially with only 6 red sources). Also, your creature count (even counting the token-maker spells) is a little low. Aim for 15 or higher.

Why are you not playing Voiceless Spirits? Also, in straight W/R, Skirsdag Cultist is looking really good due to the tokens, the interaction with Fiend Hunter and Thraben Sentry as well as Avacyn's Collar.
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Apologies for double-posting, but following the link to the sealed pool, I instead get this (clearly different) pool to build from...



Are others having this problem?
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
This Deck was built in 0:10:49

Total Deck Size: 40
17 Lands
---------------
7 Mountain
10 Plains


14 Creatures
---------------
1 Avacynian Priest
1 Fiend Hunter
1 Hollowhenge Spirit
1 Loyal Cathar
1 Manor Gargoyle
1 Markov Warlord
1 Nearheath Stalker
1 Niblis of the Mist
1 Rage Thrower
1 Silverclaw Griffin
1 Skirsdag Cultist
1 Thraben Sentry
2 Voiceless Spirit


9 Other Spells
---------------
1 Blazing Torch
1 Bonds of Faith
1 Brimstone Volley
1 Burning Oil
2 Gather the Townsfolk
1 Increasing Devotion
1 Smite the Monstrous

1 Wrack with Madness



Edit:


Oh I missed that avacyn's collar, maybe I'll sideboard that in every game!

A third pro just shared his build of the pool on the coverage site - another White/Red build.

Ken Yukuhiro:


I like this aggressive construction a lot. It has a plethora of aggressive creatures, a good arsenal of removal (the choice of Harvest Pyre over Smite the Monstrous is interesting) and some good ways to finish out the games with a horde of tokens through the Devotion or the Collar or an alpha-strike enabled by the Warlord at the top of the curve. I also like the cut of Elbrus, the Binding Blade, which definitely is too clunky for a deck as aggressive as this.
See the coverage site for Ken's own thoughts on the pool and the decision to leave Nearheath Stalker, Rage Thrower and Smite the Monstrous in the sideboard.

I'm kind of puzzled by the Shimmering Grotto in a straight 2-color deck like this. I feel like it needs the tempo from hitting colored lands more than the slight consistency bump (I'd replace it with a ninth Plains, there's no need for more red sources).
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
I built the obvious white-red deck that everyone else built, with two exceptions:

1) -2 land, +2 Forests, -1 bad red card, +1 Ghoultree. There's hardly any double white or double red in this pool at all! And I'm going to see a third of my deck before I can cast Ghoultree, anyway. (Even at a discount.)

2) Maindeck Avacyn's Collar. When I was done with my deck I took one last look at it and realized that I had a bunch of humans and that two of my "non creatures" were white spells which put human tokens into play. (I only played one Gather the Townsfolk.) I think I cut either the white tapper or Smite the Monstrous for it.

This Deck was built in 0:09:05


Total Deck Size: 40
17 Lands
---------------
7 Mountain
10 Plains



11 Creatures
---------------
1 Avacynian Priest
1 Erdwal Ripper
1 Fiend Hunter
1 Hollowhenge Spirit
1 Loyal Cathar
1 Manor Gargoyle
1 Niblis of the Mist
1 Skirsdag Cultist
1 Thraben Sentry
2 Voiceless Spirit



12 Other Spells
---------------
1 Avacyn's Collar
1 Blazing Torch
1 Bonds of Faith
1 Break of Day
1 Brimstone Volley
1 Burden of Guilt
1 Burning Oil
2 Gather the Townsfolk
1 Increasing Devotion
1 Intangible Virtue
1 Wrack with Madness 

I think a token-based strategy would work best with this pool. While I normally do not like skirsdag cultist, I think he really shines when you have litters of humans to chuck at your opponent and his/her creatures. This along with some great removal in red moved me into that support color over the other colors available. Also, while intangible virtue may be a risky addition to most decks, I felt that it was worth the inclusion as long as I ran avacyn's collar (in addition to 2x gather the townsfolk and increasing devotion).

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