9 May 2011

The Great Work Is Complete

Gary - Thanks to everyone that attended the New Phyrexia Pre-Release Event which was held on Sunday 8th May at the Whistlestop Inn in Portslade. The day went really well, with a good mix of new players, experienced players, young and old.

After the days fighting this is how the final rankings looked:

1. Olly James

2. Jae Miles

3. David Sanders

4. Simon Wright

5. Gary Cambell-Smith

6. Nathan Minter

7. Jack Hayward (The highest place under 16!)

8. Wayne Hogan

9. Nick Lewis

10. Michael Pike

11. Jame Haddow

12. John Herring

13. Robert Hills

14. Phillip Morris

15. Andrew Haddow

16. Gavin Scott

17. Ryder Broadbent Smith

18. Josh Montgomery

19. Oliver Smith

20. Stuart Richardson

21. Natalie Smith

22. Matthew Heinrich

Congratulations Olly for your win, an i'll pass it over to you to talk about what you had.

O - Hi all, cheers Gary, thought I'd follow up the rankings with my deck list, and the ideas I had behind it. So without further ado...

And the statistics of the deck...

I got these graphs from MTGdeckbuilder.net, were you can also find my deck for you to play with and test - http://www.mtgdeckbuilder.net/Decks/ViewDeck/94179

I really enjoyed this set as a limited format, the mechanics involved meant you had to really keep on your toes constantly and I had some really hard games, namely Jack, Gavin, Simon and John (Haha, only joking, Gary aswell, they were all hard).

In a previous post by John he spoke about the Phyrexian Mana. This made it tricky to know what exactly to choose whilst constructing. You could put any coloured phyrexian spell into any deck aslong as you had the life when you wanted to play it. It also ment that everyone else was probably thinking the same thing. So when it came time to play, the normal safetys of tapped lands no longer applied.
I managed to open some cards that helped me include the Tanadon (above) in a White and Black Deck. Below is an image of creatures and artifacts that gained me life and the cards that I included that I could use the life for.

'Suture Priest' and 'Pristine Talisman' were unbelievably strong cards and were able to counteract me losing life to activate the 'Birthing Pod's' ability, which proved key in a couple of games, but that'll come in a second. First a side note to the 'Suture Priest'. I opened my first 'Kemba, Kha Regent' that morning, and also found 4 equipment and the 'Sunspear Shikari', it seemed perfect to trigger the 'Priests' by spawning 2/2 Cats to top up my life total and potentially this could lead to a win condition by Cat.

Ok, so, the aforementioned 'Birthing Pod' idea. The idea came from the next booster, 'Sheoldred'! A 6/6 with Swampwalk and the ability to bring back all of the creatures that I'd sacrificed with the pod to get him onto the board and he makes your opponent sacrifice creatures! Pictured with him and the cards that lead to him are other cards I included that could help me get cards back from my library.

I've also stuffed in enough bits that would help create opponents swamps and used Swampwalk.

I'd just like to mention a moment that really stood out for me. I was playing Jack Hayward, it was our first game of the round. Jack had played the 'Phyrexian Swamlord', a 4/4 with Infect and it has 'at the beginning of his upkeep, he gets 1/1 Infect Insects equal to the number of poison counters his opponent (Me) has'! Ouch, that's a powerful card. I responded with a 'Suture Priest' and let his lord hit me for 4 poison. My thoughts were that he would spawn enough creatures to kill himself. Unfortunately he also had enough to finish of my infection, but, and this is the interesting bit, as I was being dealt the final poison, so was my 'Blistergrub', which died and took Jack from 1 life to 0, also finishing him! A perfect draw and laughs from the both of us, good game Jack.

Think that's all from me, over to John for a run down of bits he liked.

Olly for Team Gambit

John - Magic Moments

I think I can safely say that New Phyrexia will be a popular set. The ability to pay life rather than Mana will certainly effect the tempo of the game. It will also see cards that wouldn't normally appear in some decks appear in those decks. After all, innovation is at the core of MtG.

From my experience at the pre-release, the series of splicers generated a lot of pressure. Two creatures for x mana is O.K. (or 3 in the case of Maul Splicer) but when one of those creatures has an ability of some kind the pressure adds up.

Suture Priest - The abilities of Soul Warden and Blood Seeker combined with a mechanic that lets you pay life to cast spells proved pretty annoying.

My memorable moments include:

A first round game against Jack that lasted half an hour!

Witnessing Nick cast Life's Finale followed by a next turn Precursor Golem, only for his opponent to then cast his own Life's Finale.
Another special mention for Nick who managed to swing for 72 damage with a Liege of the Tangle and eight 8/8 lands courtesy of the Lieges awakening counters.

Stuart Richardson for being on negative life and 9 poison counters and still winning the round!
This was achieved by having Phyrexian Unlife and Soul Conduit on the battlefield.

Back to Gary for his moments and the round up,

John for TG

Gary - So Finally, for me it was a really great day with the most rewarding part coming from the comments made during the day by the players!

It was an added bonus for me to play as it only happens due to us having an odd number of players. I really enjoyed all of my games but here is a summary of my top moments!

I won my first game 2-0 against Nick, but the scoreline is very deceptive! Both games were extremely close and I won with the smallest amount of life both times! Despite having built what I thought would be a poison deck I had to beat Nick through life loss both times! We both used cards to copy the splicers that came into play leading to a trade off of Golems! For me the game swung my way when after playing an early game Precursor Golem I managed to respond and kill all other golems in play with 4 damage! - Sorry Nick!

I played Andrew next and although it may not be his best moment, my deck performed the best it did all day in both games. Two almost perfect opening hands and I think that this was the only match that I actually managed to win with poison!

Game of the day for me was game 3 against Olly! Two very close challenging games, I even thought I had won the second one - right up to the moment that I died!

In game 4, I faced John and I think that this was the best single game of the day for me! It started really slow, and I mean really slow, with not much happening other than land for 3 turns! After that though it became a game of counters, sacrifices and removal, with one turn seeing instant cards stack and result in all creatures being removed and the game almost re-started. Eventually my Phyrexian Swarmlord swung the game my way and after 35 minutes of play I eventually won.

My last game and the quickest, was different to all the others. Jae's deck was simple, lots of quick hard hitting creatures - I killed the ones I could but more kept coming! Both of us suffered quick life loss. Unfortunately, I ran out first. Jae really used the Phyrexian mana well, building an impressive creature base by sacrificing his own life. It really demonstrated the great potential of this set and gave me some great deck ideas!

So from all of us here at Gambit Towers, we hope you all enjoyed your time at the pre-release, and look foreward to hearing your thoughts on the new cards and events to come.

From me, I've been Gary for Team Gambit

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