There have been some friends that wanted me to show them how I do an M11 4-pack sealed deck event since I've been having some success at it lately. So here goes. Here's a sample 4 pack that I've opened.
First thing I do with an opened sealed deck is to arrange it by rarity. This will identify the bombs.
And our bombs are...
Temple Bell, Glacial Fortress, Silence, and Goblin Chieftain... Not the most exciting of bombs.
Next is to arrange the cards by color.
We can dismiss Blue and Red at first glance. They don't have enough creatures or cards, and there isn't anything powerful enough to splash. The best things to splash are removal, since they are useful in any stage of the game. Worst things to splash are probably counterspells.
Now we put the most power spells, the spells that will definitely make the deck if we played that color, of each color in their own stack, and see how it looks.
White has the early drops and evasive creatures, and a finisher in Inspired Charge, and removal in Blinding Mage. Black has great but conditional removal in 2 Deathmarks, and card advantage in 2 Sign in Bloods, Liliana's Specter, and Gravedigger, and a late game finisher in Nightwing Shade. Green has some acceleration in elves and Cultivate, some fatties, and Card advantage in Garruk's Packleader. Green also also allows us to splash with Cultivate, but there's nothing worth splashing for, and running 3 colors in M11 sealed is not recommended unless absolutely necessary.
Out of all the colors, it looks like white is our best, so it's just a matter of pairing it up with black or green. Both colors are not recommened with white, but we have no choice. B/W makes the mana base very awkward, and G/W has no removal, so you can't answer your opponent's bombs.
Lets try G/W first.
As expected, with 14 creatures, that is way too many, and not enough tricks to support them. 10 is my commendation for the number of creatures, with 9 ok if you are a control deck, and up to 12 if you are aggro. If you run 12 creatures and have a lot of two drops, you might think of cutting a land. Otherwise 13 land is what I run. You can run 14 land if you have a lot of bombs, and if you get to them, you win the game.
Now let's try B/G
Better, not enough early drops, and we have to run pretty dead cards like Wall of Vines to prevent early fliers from running us over since we have almost no fliers of our own.
Now lets look at B/W
Much better. We have a strong early drop game, backed with card drawing and card advantage if our game stalls. And two finishers. The two Deathmarks suck if we don't play the right colored opponents, but since we didn't open a doom blade or two, it will have to do. Note the Sign in Bloods are essentially lategame cards, since we can't cast them early anyway with it being double black. So we want to ensure that we can cast our white beaters early in the game.
Arrange it by color, and it looks like,
We definitely want to run the Terramorphic Expanse to help with our color troubles.
Although there are more Black than White cards, we want our white beats early, the double black cards like Sign in Blood and Specter are still powerful lategame. So an even distribution seems like the way to go. Thus the final deck is,
Against decks which Deathmark is dead for, we can side in Diabolic Tutor and Silence. Not the greatest, but our card pool wasn't the best either.
This deck went 2-0 split in the tourney, so I'm satisfied. The last deck probably would have wrecked me though, since it was Blue/Red.