Irish MTG Nationals 1999—A Big Blue Scrub(Playing Red)’s Report

00:00 Wed 30 Jun 1999. Updated: 20:44 26 Jun 2013
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For those of you who don’t want to read through all of this, here are section headings:


This section could really be blank. I haven’t played competitively (or really at all) since the 1998 Irish Nationals, and my current course is simply too demanding to allow any real commitment to the game. This year’s Nationals are conveniently timed to be in the middle of my exams, as well as being on the weekend after the introduction of 6th Edition. Preparation was out. I only definitely decided to go the day before the tournament. I had decided quite a while back that given my inability to prepare a control deck of my usual type. As the title may suggest, I tend to favour Big Blue, or Blue/x very defensive decks. For more details on my big blue scrubbiness, or my scrubby big blueness (but not my scrubby blue bigness—that doesn’t make any sense…) see my report on last year’s Nationals. But this year, I wanted short games and solidity, above all something that required neither extensive tweaking (as control would have) nor extensive playtesting experience (as Living Death would have). I had decided a few months ago that I would play either controllish red (like old Sligh) or White Weenie.

I saw Dave Price’s article on the end of beatdown and decided that I liked the look of the deck he had there. I have no guilt over playing a front page Dojo Deck. Not only because I had no preparation time, but that’s reason enough.

My aim was to make day 2 and have fun. I came 9th in 1997, 15th in 1998, and had no right to expect an improvement on those results considering my lack of practice.

Ciaran Lawler provided me with the bulk of my deck, for which I am extremely grateful. Eoin Brosnan, Greg McRandle (again, apologies if the spelling is wrong), David Kearney and John Cowan lent me additional cards. Thanks guys.

I actually did have expectations for the metagame despite my lack of practice and preparation. I figured there would be a lot of White Weenie, in part because there always is and in part because it’s such a traditional fallback deck whenever the environment changes. I expected a lot of Living Death decks because it’s so strong and loses so little to 6th Ed. I wasn’t expecting traditional Control, but I thought that Tradewind-’Geddon would be a big deck, perhaps as big as Death. I figured there would also be quite a bit of Sligh, although not as much as in previous years, as the loss of Ball Lightning would be seen as too much by many. I thought there would be smatterings of Stompy and Black Weenie.

The Deck

Goblin Masons aren’t yet legal, so I changed a whole four cards from Dave Price’s suggested listing—2 Goblin Raiders and 2 Parch (anti-Tradewind)

The End of Beatdown (60)
Land (22)
  • 18 Mountain
  • 4 Wasteland
Creatures (20)
  • 4 Mogg Fanatic
  • 4 Jackal Pup
  • 4 Goblin Patrol
  • 4 Fireslinger
  • 2 Goblin Raider
  • 2 Lightning Dragon
Other (18)
  • 4 Hammer of Bogardan
  • 4 Shock
  • 4 Pillage
  • 4 Cursed Scroll
  • 2 Parch
Sideboard (15)
  • 4 Stone Rain
  • 3 Thran Lens
  • 2 Bottle Gnomes
  • 2 Ankh of Mishra
  • 2 Apocalypse
  • 1 Parch
  • 1 Price of Progress

Not much to say. Parch was suggested by a whole bunch of people (on my own I wouldn’t have known the card existed). Raider seemed like an obvious if slightly subpar creature. I was tempted to add in some Stone Rains and some Avalanche Riders and make the deck more LD-based, but then decided that without testing time that was just adding a big risk, and that Dave Price probably knew what he was talking about.

The side board wasn’t bad. I probably should have put in four Lens. The Stone Rains were great against control and Death. John Larkin suggested Thran Lens, thanks John. The Bottle Gnomes were for other aggressive desks, and as help against prot. red stuff. The Ankhs were colourless damage and good with LD. The Apocalypses were anti-Death mainly, possibly useful against any slow deck. The Parch was more anti-Tradewind, and the Price of Progress was more anti-Death.

I didn’t play much with this deck, but from what I heard White Weenie apparently wasn’t as much of a problem as I thought it would be, and it could take Death some of the time.

Before the tournament, the decks I knew people were playing were:

John Larkin, Dave Kearney, Ciaran Lawler, Eoin Brosnan, John Rogers: Living Death variants (John Rogers’ deck was, according to him, rather weird in comparison with the others)

Ger Norton: Black Weenie with Hatred

John Cowan: White Weenie

Day One—Standard Constructed

I had a first round bye due to my DCI rating, which I was rather surprised by (again), but didn’t complain…

I didn’t scout too much during this round, but I know that there was a lot of White Weenie out there.

Round 2

Ed Moynihan

White Weenie/x

Game 1

I never like playing people I know early on, and Ed wasn’t too happy either. Oh well. This game he got badly manascrewed, aided by an early Pillage from me. I Scrolled a Soltari Priest, I think, and beat him down with small stuff. Not very exciting.

Game 2

This game was fairer in mana terms; what decided it was my getting a Thran Lens. I would have won earlier but forgot the Echo for a Goblin Patrol—lack of experience with the Urza block showing up right away. But I got away with it that time.


Well, we tried playing some more after that but I kept getting manascrewed—somewhat frustrating for Ed that it happened after the match. I think the decks are 50-50, but it might have actually been slightly in my favour. White Weenie wasn’t as strong as I thought it was, or at least the White Weenie I saw wasn’t, and other people testing said the same thing. The Scroll is a big part of that—as is being able to Pillage Scrolls.

2–0 games, 2–0 matches, 6 pts.

Round 3

Finbarr O’Mahony (although I can’t now remember if that was his second name—apologies if I get this wrong Finbarr!)


Game 1

I was a little worried to see Green. This is never a good matchup for Sligh. I hadn’t met Finbarr before—he left the game just before started playing seriously in ’96, and had only just returned. This was a very friendly match, which was pretty cool. I was able to eliminate early mana sources and take control of this one from the start, and it wasn’t too long a game.

Game 2

I sided in a Parch and a Gnomes. He started off a lot stronger in this game, and I had to fight to clear the board, a bunch of times losing card advantage to his fatter creatures. At a key stage he forgot to pay Echo on Simian Grunts (such a good card!) and I was able to attack unopposed with Jackal Pup and Goblin Patrol. The key point of the game was dependent on a ruling that may be contentious. He was on 4 life, I was on 2. I attack again with my Goblin Patrol and Jackal Pups. He summons Simian Grunts. Before damage dealing I Shock him. Neither of us have anything left to play (in fact he was tapped out). He naturally blocks the Pups with the Grunts. I think we both die, and he agrees, but I decide to call a judge (Ralph Martin) who agrees but isn’t certain. I ask him to make sure, on the off-chance that there is a timing step between assignment and redirection. Ralph says it’s a draw, so we shuffle etc. and start the next game. However, a short while later Ralph comes back and tells us that the decision (after quite a bit of conferring) was that there is a step between the two, and since death is instantaneous under 6th Edition rules, Finbarr dies first. I win! I think that that’s technically the closest game I’ve ever won…


I was lucky, very lucky, to win this. Obviously my game 2 escape was quite fortuitous, but also I think I was lucky to even get to such a stage. My deck worked very well in game one and quite well in game two, but I think that his deck would normally win the matchup. The key for me was having the Scroll on my side (he didn’t have any) to allow me not to lose card advantage when killing his fatter creatures. However, even taking that into account I think it’s a 70-30 tilt for Stompy.

4–0 games, 3–0 matches, 9 pts.

Round 4

David Finucane

White Weenie/x

Game 1

He had to mulligan, so I had early card advantage. This was a close game, again being decided by 6th Ed. rules. I managed to clear the board after taking a lot of damage from Rancored creatures, and we were both on 1 life. I had something on the board to kill him, I think Pups. I think he had a Scroll on the board—but I had been Pillaging his Plains and the only way he could kill me was by using a City of Brass. If he didn’t he died, and so he did, dying an instantaneous death as soon as he drew the mana for the Scroll. Very close game—if he’d drawn a land that turn he would have won.

Game 2

This was a very close game, but the key was that he was able to get Worship working. In the midgame I played a timely Thran Lens to eliminate a Soltari Priest, but the Lens was Disenchanted and he killed me with a Rancored prot. red Paladin. He was on a Worship-assisted 1 life at game’s end.

Game 3

I got a very quick start and got a lot of land and a Scroll out; he also had a good start with another Rancored Paladin, but had to ’Geddon under pressure to stop me from using the Scroll. The game essentially hinged on a 50-50 chance: I Scrolled the Paladin with a Hammer and a Pillage in hand. I called Pillage, he chose Pillage. From there I recovered more quickly, getting out a Lightning Dragon to take the match.


Again, White Weenie didn’t seem to be the threat for red that I had thought. I got good draws in all the games, but his draws didn’t seem so bad either. I did have to get lucky with the Scroll to win the match, but it felt like we would have split 50-50 if we’d played a whole series of games.

6–1 games, 4–0 matches, 12 pts

Round 5

Stewart Shinkins

MOMa / Grim Monolith / Show and Tell / Prosperity / Stroke combo

Game 1

He killed me on turn 4 or 5.

Game 2

I took out my Hammers and put in 4 Stone Rain. I didn’t have anything much to stop this kind of deck.

In this game he took longer to go off, but got a turn 2 Chill out. I pressured him anyway, and when he tried to go off the combo stalled. I had a turn to kill him, and here I made my second major mistake of the day. Actually it’s composed of two mistakes. The situation is that he is on 1 life. I have 4 mana untapped, a Scroll on the table, and a Scroll, Pillage and some creature in hand. I’ve already attacked. The smart play here is to do nothing and wait for him to use Prosperity, then kill him at instant speed with some DD. I didn’t see this at all, which is a bad but probably forgivable error. I decided to scroll him, and made the entirely unforgivable error of keeping my Scroll in hand, thereby giving myself a 33% instead of 50% chance of killing him. I didn’t kill him, and he used Diminishing Returns to go off and kill me the next turn.


His deck was an excellent choice for the environment, correctly seeing the lack of viable control. I certainly didn’t prepare for any combo decks. I should have killed him in game two, but I would have had to hope for a lot of luck in the third game. I think his deck would beat mine 90% of the time.

6–3 games, 4–1 matches, 12 pts.

Round 6

John Kearney

B/w Gnomes / Corpse Dance / Grave Pact

Game 1

My Wastelands proved crucial in this game, as I managed to keep him on low land and kill him with various small creatures.

Game 2

I SBed in 4 Stone Rain and an Ankh of Mishra. I got the Ankh out early, but it didn’t matter as he was able to get to his critical 5 mana and just start dancing Bottle Gnomes. He also got Grave Pact out, which naturally hurt me pretty badly.

Game 3

I thought for a long time about taking out the Ankh, as it didn’t really have much affect, but then decided that it might just add in the extra damage if my landkill came up, so I put another one in. I think I SBed out some small creatures and the 2 Parch.

I got early LD and that really decided the game; I kept him below five the whole time. I got a good start, with two early Pups and a Mogg Fanatic. He did get an Engineered Plague for Hounds or the table, but I got a Scroll out and working, and some more small creatures. He never damaged me this game.


I’m not sure. He has stuff (like dancing Bottle Gnomes) that give Sligh no end of trouble, but I think that my deck was simply more consistent. Which, of course, if one of Sligh’s major strengths and why I chose it for that tournament.

Unfortunately I was less consistent than my deck. I managed to avoid big game mistakes in this match, but I was very tired and having real difficulty concentrating; I made a number of really silly mistakes with things like writing score down, and also one attempt to play a Wasteland and a Mountain in the same turn, one immediately after the other (note to self: Wasteland is not a 0cc LD instant).

8–4 games, 5–1 matches, 15 pts.

Wow. After a year of not playing and with no practice whatsoever, I am in the top 8 for Day Two having lost only one match, to Stewart Shinkins’ undefeated combo deck. I’m really surprised and very happy at this, my best ever showing in the Type II part of Nationals (my previous best having been 14 points).

Top Standard Decks

So, the other players and decks that I can think of went:

Stewart Shinkins, MOMa / Grim Monolith / Show and Tell / Prosperity / Stroke: 6–0
David Kearney, Living Death: 5–1 (1 loss to Martin Deery’s Goblin Sligh)
John Larkin, Living Death: 5–1 (1 loss to Ciaran Lawler’s Living Death)
Ciaran Lawler, Living Death: 5–1 (1 loss to Stewart Shinkins’ combo deck)
Ger Norton, Black Weenie with Hatred: 5–1
Martin Deery, Goblin Sligh: 5–1
John Rogers, Living Death variant: 4–2 (I think)
Eoin Brosnan, Living Death: 4–2 (I think)
Justin Walsh, Blue / White Control: 4–2

It was, obviously, a good day for Living Death. I know I’m missing one of the top 8 decks, and I can’t remember what it was, but unless it was White Weenie then that archetype made a bad showing considering how many people were playing it. I didn’t meet any Tradewind-’Geddon, and didn’t hear about any either, surprising since it was supposed to be one of the big decks.

Side Event: Rochester Draft

I hadn’t played Rochester at all in over a year, and I had never actually seen the Urza’s Saga or Urza’s Destiny cards, with the exception of those that I had encountered in my day’s Standard play. So some practice was definitely in order. I won’t go into a lot of detail with this, but I drafted extremely well. On my first ever draft in this environment I got a deck that was really broken: 2 Pestilence, No Mercy, Vampiric Embrace, Phyrexian Reclamation, Looming Shade, Hollow Dogs, Spined Fluke, Expunge, Phyrexian Debaser and Order of Yawgmoth, as well as solid other stuff like Phyrexian Broodlings, Swat, and Skirges. Since this draft included a bunch of good players and players from the top table, I was very happy. However, the draft was very relaxed, and nobody minded my asking questions about cards during it, a big difference from what it would be like on Sunday.

I played John Kearney in my first game, I think (I was really tired and this is very hazy now) and won easily, but in my second game I played like an absolute idiot, made lots of mistakes including some silly Debaser ones, and lost 2 straight. That was annoying, as my deck was the strongest in that draft and I should have won the side tourney. Oh well. I played some Quake with Dave Kearney and other Trinity Quakeheads, getting slapped around for an hour or so, and then went home to sleep.

Day Two—Urza’s Saga / Urza’s Destiny Rochester Draft

For the second year running I’m on the same table as the strongest drafters, but it made more sense this year as I was on the top table.

The top table was pretty tough. I’ve forgotten a player (sorry!), but the other seven were:

  • Me
  • David Kearney
  • Ger Norton
  • John Larkin
  • Ciaran Lawler
  • Martin Deery
  • Stewart Shinkins

I don’t know Martin Deery (althuogh I’m certain from how he did that he’s a strong player) but the others are all strong drafters, with one exception: me.

First Draft, or: how to recognize Phyrexian Processor

I arrived 5 minutes late for this but luckily the draft hadn’t actually started, although everyone was seated. The big story here was that John Larkin, definitely one of the strongest Limited players in the country and a big big favourite for the top 4, didn’t show for the first draft.

This was a tough draft. I wanted to fight for black, given my experience the previous evening, but there was no way I would be able to grab black at this table. It seemed like a couple of people had to jump colours in the mid to late draft. I started okay, nothing strong, getting some good small green creatures and some red DD.

On my first first-pick booster, out came a Phyrexian Processor. There was a reaction from the others at this, but I couldn’t figure out what it was, and having never seen the Processor before I just didn’t focus on it, going for a Heat Ray instead—thus leaving the Processor to Ger and passing up a very very strong Limited card. For the record, it’s a quite nondescript card (being illustrated mainly in browns and some green and yellow…)

I made one other mistake, taking something bad in red over a Dromosaur, but that wasn’t as big a deal. Near the end of the draft I was really desperate for creatures, and managed to grab 2 Simian Grunts, 2 Yavimaya Scions, 2 Viashino Bey and 2 Viashino Cutthroats. I was happy with this, although I probably shouldn’t have taken the second Grunts over Heart of the Forest (the Green enchantment that lets you search your library for 2 creatures if your opponent has more than 3 creatures in play).

R/G Beatdown (40)
Land (17)
  • 10 Mountain
  • 7 Forest
Creatures (13)
  • 2 Viashino Cutthroat
  • 2 Viashino Bey
  • 1 Retromancer
  • 1 Viashino Outrider
  • 1 Goblin Raider
  • 2 Yavimaya Scion
  • 2 Simian Grunts
  • 1 Acridian
  • 1 Cave Tiger
Other (10)
  • 3 Arc Lightning
  • 2 Shower of Sparks
  • 1 Parch
  • 1 Heat Ray
  • 1 Scrap
  • 1 Fortitude
  • 1 Hidden Stag

The Cutthroats were strong when I got to use them, and the Beys were okay. I never saw the Retromancer or the Simian Grunts. The Outrider wasn’t bad, the Scions were good fat, the Acridian was a good blocker, and the Cave Tiger was fairly good early.

The Arc Lightnings were strong, the Shower of Sparks were pretty good, and the Heat Ray was good but not as good as the Processor I picked it over… Hidden Stag was quite good and I never saw Fortitude.

I was actually very happy with the deck. It had no flyers and no tricks, but it was very solid with good removal and good fat. I succeeded in doing what I had intended to do, which was to draft solidly. Nothing spectacular, but something that could win me games if I didn’t get unlucky and if I kept my play tight and intelligent. The relevant SB cards were:

  • Weatherseed Elf
  • Guma
  • Disorder

Round 7

Martin Deery


Game 1

He got stuck on 2 land and couldn’t really do anything. I got turn 4 Viashino Cutthroat, as well as smaller earlier stuff, and he died quickly.

Game 2

This time he mulliganed once and started fine on land but didn’t seem to be able to cast much. He got out some 2/2 creature and put the enchantment that turns it into a Tim on it (Hermetic Study), but blocked my Viashino Outrider with it the following turn, thinking that he could tap the creature even though it was summoning sick, like the way you could with Fire Whip. However, it reads “enchanted creature gains…” and so he couldn’t kill my Outrider. I killed him with it soon afterwards.

He told me that his opening hand consisted of land and three creature enchantments, and he only drew one creature after that. Ouch.


I think it’s evident that I got very lucky in this match. I have no way of telling how good his deck actually was (apart from remembering what he drafted, which I don’t), but I suspect it had a lot of tricks and a lot of flyers, both of which could have posed problems for me.

10–4 games, 6–1 matches, 18 pts.

I was tied with three other people for 1st place at this point, and feeling good about my chances of going to Worlds!

Round 8

Ger Norton


Game 1

This went badly, because I got stuck on 2 mana for the first six or so turns. Ger also killed one of my lands with Befoul, which didn’t help at all but which probably didn’t affect the outcome of the match, as it took me too long to get the next land anyway. This one was no contest.

Game 2

I SBed in Weatherseed Elf.

I got an excellent start to this one, beating him down with stuff and eliminating what he had on the board. I got him down to 8 life, where he had a Weatherseed Elf out and I had a Weatherseed Elf and a Cave Tiger. Obviously, this meant I could kill him in 4 turns, right? Well, it wasn’t that obvious to me, in fact I missed this blindingly evident fact completely, and attacked with Elf and Tiger. He naturally blocked with his Elf. He was on 6. I had fat in my hand, but so did he, and he cast his first. He recovered from there, casting lots and lots of fat things and eventually just beating me down.

This was a stunningly incompetent performance from me. I had the good start I needed and just threw it away. I’m not sure why I attacked with the Elf even though I didn’t fully realize its importance; I think I was thinking in old rules some of the time and under the impression that I could kill his Elf if he blocked or something. Ger’s explanation is more plausible: I’m an idiot.


Well, I think his deck only had a slight edge, and the match would have been close had he not gotten more help than he needed from manascrew and my suicidal gameplay.

10–6 games, 6–2 matches, 18 pts.

I needed three more wins to go to Worlds. It was certainly doable, I felt, although I was very tense at this stage due to the mistakes I’d made.

Round 9

Stewart Shinkins


Game 1

I got manascrewed, and he got a very early 3/3 creature with Gaea’s Embrace on it. Smack, smack, smack, dead.

Game 2

He got manascrewed this time, and my deck functioned just fine, bringing out early and midgame threats and beating him down in around 5 turns.

Game 3

I got manascrewed again, and saw no Green mana either, and died in about 7–8 turns.


Who knows? With those kind of games, comparing the decks is impossible. Funnily enough, the only other time I’ve played Stewart was also in Limited, at Gaelcon ’97, and exactly the same thing happened—me manascrewed, him manascrewed, me manascrewed, he won.

11–8 games, 6–3 matches, 18 pts.

I think Dave Kearney won the table.

My deck was a 2–1 deck at least—shame I wasn’t a 2–1 player. Once again, I have do to go 3–0 at the final table to make it.

Second Draft

Other people at my table included John Kearney, Eoin Brosnan, John Rogers and Geoffrey Grey.

This was a very strange draft. It seemed to me that none of the cards were that strong, and people (including myself) were jumping colours all over the place.

I ended up going with Green and Red again, more Green this time. I didn’t get as good removal this time, but there was some other good stuff and some good fat.

The deck:

G/R Beatdown (41)
Land (18)
  • 10 Forest
  • 8 Mountain
Creatures (18)
  • 2 Gorilla Warrior
  • 2 Treefolk Mystic
  • 2 Pouncing Jaguar
  • 1 Winding Wurm
  • 1 Yavimaya Wurm
  • 1 Cradle Guard
  • 1 Bull Hippo
  • 1 Argothian Elder
  • 1 Cave Tiger
  • 1 Shivan Phoenix
  • 1 Retromancer
  • 1 Viashino Runner
  • 1 Ghitu Slinger
  • 1 Viashino Sandscout
  • 1 Goblin Patrol
Other (5)
  • 1 Might of Oaks
  • 1 Symbiosis
  • 1 Fortitude
  • 1 Lava Axe
  • 1 Arc Lightning

I never got to play Might of Oaks, Symbiosis, or Fortitude; I also never saw the Viashino Runner. Cradle Guard was strong, as was Ghitu Slinger. The Argothian Elder was in there for the high-cc stuff in the deck, like the Shivan Phoenix, which never really worked that well for me—6cc is probably too high for 3 damage per turn. The Viashino Sandscout wasn’t that good.

I wasn’t amazingly happy with the deck, and I was worried about the lack of removal. Again, it was solid, but less so than the previous draft’s deck. On the other hand, the cards at the table looked weaker to me.

I was tired of mana screw, so I went for 18/41 instead of 17/40.

Round 10

John Kearney


Game 1

I had a good hand, but missed early land drops, sticking on three when he was on 5. Worse, he put down Mishra’s Helix (which I had passed, thinking it not right for my deck) on his 5th turn. Worse again, I failed to draw my fourth land to cast fat (I was holding the islandwalking Bull Hippo) on my next turn, and he was able to deny me all my mana for the rest of the game.

Game 2

I SBed in Hidden Ancients.

Once again, I miss early land drops, he gets 5th turn Helix, I don’t get 4th land, and he denies me my land for the rest of the game. The major difference is that I got Cradle Guard out just before he got the Helix, and he has real trouble getting rid of them. He used mana to get out Radiant’s Dragoons early, and I was able to kill them with Cradle Guard and Arc Lightning. That was the only time after he got the Helix that I had mana in my main phase…

He made errors with his creatures, forgetting to animate his blue Mishra land when blocking the Guard, and I ground him down slowly. I kept drawing land after land, so he had to keep most of his land tied up in the Helix. However, he got out creatures that gained him 1 life per turn, and that could prevent 2 damage, so from 5 life I could only do him 1 damage, and it was clear that he would soon be able to kill me somehow. My only hope was to draw Might of Oaks, which would give me enough trample damage to kill him. However, the only time I drew it was after he Stroked me for 12 with 11 cards remaining in my library.

I had Hidden Ancients out from turn 2, and he never played any of his Caryatids or Gargoyles, which helped me a lot.


I think my deck was stronger. He was very lucky both games, getting an early Helix before I had enough mana to cast fat, and he was barely able to deal with the Cradle Guard. If I had laid a land a turn, or even four lands in 6 turns, I would have been able to kill him in both games, I’m quite certain. This loss really hurt, and was extremely frustrating.

11–10 games, 6–4 matches, 18 pts.

I went out of contention for top 4 at the same point as I did last year. I could still make top 8, however.

Round 11

Geoffrey Grey

W/G? (White-something, can’t remember it too well)

Game 1

I don’t remember this too well. His deck had lots of damage-prevention tricks in it, and he consistently stopped me from killing his creatures or from getting damage through. We stuck on 17–11 for a long time, then he got out additional creatures and killed me.

Game 2

Pretty much the same story this game, except that I managed to do him 4 points of damage instead of three.


I don’t think my deck would ever win this matchup (manascrew excluded). His deck had lots of ways to prevent damage and do various other tricks that my straight-up fat beatdown simply couldn’t handle. This was just a bad matchup, and he didn’t make any mistakes to give me even a glimmer of hope.

11–12 games, 6–5 matches, 18 pts.

Well, now I wasn’t even in contention for top 8. I played on to try to get top 16, which I thought I could manage, partly for prizes but mainly for pride.

Round 12

John Rogers

G/? (memory really suffering at this stage)

Game 1

This was decided by another Weatherseed Elf decision, this time on his part. I had a Winding Wurm and something else out, and we were trading damage. I was on 9, he was on 8. He had enough on the table to kill me the next turn. I had a Gorilla Warrior, I think, as well as the Wurm. He had a Weatherseed Elf. I attacked, hoping that he wouldn’t block with the Elf because he would want to ensure that if I cast another creature he could still kill me using forestwalk. That’s what he did, and I was able to Lava Axe him for the win. Whew.

Game 2

I don’t remember this too well, but I know that my deck simply got rolling early on better than his did, and I won it.


I think our decks were about even, but John was even more tired and wrecked than I was and really just wanted to leave, whereas I still had some strong desire to win left.

13–12 games, 7–5 matches, 21 pts.

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