Friday, March 29, 2013

You Don't Pass a Boros Reckoner.

I was playing magic last night at Melrose Music and Comics in Los Angeles and I won. I came in first place over 12 other booster drafters. I walked into the store at 7:56 and waited for the draft to start at 8:00. By 8:00 there were 4 people waiting to draft. I asked the manager what time the draft was supposed to start and he told me 8:00 just like he did over the phone when I called an hour earlier to make sure I was going to make it in on time. So I ended up waiting until 9:00 to start the damn draft when 8 other players showed up making the total player count an awkward 12. The manager put it to a vote as to whether we wanted a large pod of 12 or 2 of 6. The unanimous vote was largely in favor of 2 pods of 6. But the computer wouldn't listen to us and spit out the final verdict that we'd be playing 1 large pod. Stupid computer. 

We took our seats and 3 gatecrash booster packs were passed down the table from one end to the other. The man on my right held the packs that were supposed to come to me and replaced them with the packs he would have had. We laughed about it and he remarked on how mad he'd be if I ended up opening a mythic he would have otherwise had. I didn't care since it was literally impossible to know what was inside the packs and wrote it off as amusing. So the timer began and we started shredding each of our first packs, looking for that 1st pack 1st pick that may or may not decide the rest of our picks and ultimately our final deck. After stripping the plastic from the 15 card booster I shoveled the useless shell of the pack towards the middle of the table and fanned out the last several cards to see what was among them. Boros Reckoner. I briefly skimmed through the rest of the cards for the fun of it. You don't pass a Boros Reckoner. I flashed the card to the guy to my right and so ensued the raging. Several juicy boros guild picks, including 1 boros charm and a madcap skills later, and I was quite content with my measly 4 creature deck so far. 

The boros cards coming from my right during the first round of pack openings were in no short supply so I strapped in and locked myself into force mode. The second pack rare turned out to be a crypt ghast which I lamented giving away, but had no intention of hate drafting over a truefire paladin first pick. Several picks later and all but the suckiest of red and white cards found their way to me, cough… cough… structural collapse… structural collapse sucks… big time… it sucks. But being the “seasoned drafter” I am I was well aware of the lack of low costed creatures in my deck so far. Sorry skin brand goblin but I think you're too expensive for a useful 2/1 red creature. So when those foundry street denizens came 'round boy was I happy to see 'em. 3 street denizens later and I had all the 1 drops I needed, filling in a crucial part of my aggro boros control deck. Oh ya, I had snatched up 3 angelic edicts and a smite for some quality white removal first and second pack. 

So then it was time to get started on the 3rd pack, which is generally the most fruitful round as long as you're playing colors nobody around you is playing since those people will already be settled into their respective colors, leaving cards in your colors more likely to reach you. Explanation aside, first pick third pack is another Boros Reckoner. How nice! Once again, flashed the guy to my right. By the end of picking from the third packs, news of the "double reckoner deck" had spread and soon nobody looked like they wanted to be paired up against me. I put together my nearly perfect draft deck and started drawing hands. Ya. This was gonna be fun.

I'm quite fond of razortip whip in general but many people where surprised to see it in my deck, yielding such comments as, “you have that card in you deck?” and “there must be something else you could side in.” All I regret is failing to keep track of how much damage it ended up doing each game it hit the field. Certainly no less than 4 damage, at times nearing double digits. Ironically it was the whip that dealt the fatal blow giving me the win in the finals against a guy who previously pointed out how embarrassing it would be to lose your last point of life to razortip whip. I was thrilled to have won a draft for the first time since I started playing again just this year, after an 8 year hiatus. I ended up winning without losing a single game in all 4 rounds. The "double reckoner deck" played exceptionally well whenever a reckoner was on the field, but was also rather proficient during games where they were absent. 

Here's a list of the cards that were most effective in the deck: 
Boros Reckoner
angelic edict
madcap skills 
true fire paladin 
wojek halberdiers 
skyknight legionnaire 
syndic of tithes
court street denizen 
foundry street denizen 
and lastly razortip whip of course.

$30 store credit 'aint too shabby for a struggling magic player.

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