Some winning OOB draft decks

No, this doesn’t mean that my „fixing cards“ series has already ended. I just wanted to uphold the tradition of posting decks which won me drafts, and since the format isn’t exactly brand new anymore, it’s time now.

I haven’t drafted nearly as much as I wanted during the last months due to real life reasons, but I did watch a boatload of videos and streams to confirm my outlook on the environment. To make this short: It is slow, certainly slower than triple Battle for Zendikar draft, and possibly the slowest since the infamous and unparalleled Magic 2014. Note, though, that „slow“ does not mean that you can ignore the existence of aggressive decks and completetly eschew early defense – it just means that defensive decks are generally favored over aggressive ones, and that you need to address the lategame and boardstall situations more extensively than in fast formats, which are mainly about not falling back early and winning races.

I usually, although not always, choose to draw in this format. Making your land drops is very important, since your higher mana slots will be well-filled, and mulligans hurt – the new mulligan rule notwithstanding – since you need both your lands and your spells. Also, most decks stretch their mana bases quite a bit (which makes sense, because you prefer power over consistency a little more in slower formats), and the „sixth color“ Grey compounds this. Being on the draw allows you to keep more 7-card-hands (or rather, makes bad but necessary keeps a little less bad – I’m not actually sure how often I would mulligan a hand on the play which I would keep on the draw).

If you look closely at my winning decks, you will probably notice a trend. (Okay, you don’t need to look THAT closely.) I assure you that most of the six other decks I drafted looked differently – but then again, those went all only 2-1 each, so there’s that…

 

Bunt

Note that I drew Mana Confluence only once and then didn’t play it, because my mana worked out perfectly fine without it. Skyrider Elf disappointed me by never showing up in a deck where he would have been really excellent.

 

Auchziemlichbunt

If you thought Deathless Behemoth was good in the previous format, try it in this! Having the biggest creature on both offense and defense is… well, big.

 

Warcalleroutonce

In the finals, I sided the Warcaller out – not because he was too slow against an aggressive deck, but because he didn’t have enough impact in an extremely grindy attrition matchup.

 

Greenagain

Fall was great, although I never needed to cast it with X>2. I never cast Serpentine Spike, though, although that was the card which finally cemented me in GR instead of UG/r. While I firstpicked those rares, I unbelievably got Outnumber very late, and Press even tabled. People are deeply stupid!

That’s it for now, but I promise to return to Arabian Nights soon!

 

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4 Gedanken zu „Some winning OOB draft decks

  1. NTL sagt:

    Now that first deck (four colors + grey splash!) would have made for an interesting draft video. How did you end up in it, got cut off from your early pick colors? I’d guess it wasn’t the actual plan after the first few picks…

    • Zeromant sagt:

      I do not really remember what exactly happened. I’m pretty sure that I just surfed through my early picks (like I usually do), assessing which colors were open for me, and finding that the strongest pick was in Blue or Green most of the time. I guess that I also got those Boulder Salvos pretty late, since that card was very undervalued in the beginning of the format (it might stil be a little), and decided I would splash them, because removal is just important, and GU are the best colors to enable splashes (even if, ironically, my manafixing or card selection would not come from those colors in the end, except for the Savant).

      Since I had all those expensive flyers, I valued Hedron Crawler highly just for ramping purposes, so they are not an indication that I aborted a different draft plan. Also, I got several dual lands, and of course that moneypicked Mana Confluence, which led me to deliberately go for splashable power in the third pack.

      Obviously, I did not set out to draft this kind of deck – that would be stupid, seeing how all of its manafixing sits at uncommon and higher rarities – but I willingly accepted it when it fell into my lap, which is the very point of surfing and reacting to the packs‘ contents. So no, I never aborted an already formulated plan here (in contrast to several other drafts), and while this was certainly an unusual draft, I don’t think it was actually that hard to navigate, and I also don’t believe I wasted many of my early picks: Thought Harvester sitting on the bench was just a deck structure decision, not because my deck couldn’t have supported it; the Raptor was probably a hatepick from a weak booster; and the Wastes I guess I picked just in case because there was nothing really enticing for me in those packs (and because I want to collect some).

      Note also that the basis of this deck is very solid UG value creatures with some ramp, splashing only for some excellent removal I wouldn’t need early, so it is actually a lot more consistent than it may look – probably more so than a BRC aggro deck, for example, which needs all three of its „colors“ rather early.

      I just recall a remarkable game with that deck, where my opponent had an Endbringer I couldn’t permanently kill in play for several turns, and then even cast a Roiling Waters, but still lost because I had accumulated that much value in the meanwhile…

  2. Ormus sagt:

    I think even more important that the color of your decks is your 2-mana slot, which is well filled most of the time in the above decks. I prefer to draft VERY agressive RW decks in the format (to much success), those prey on decks with bad/few 2 (and 3) mana drops. Plus they punish mana problems hard. I like the format, there is grindy gameplay available, but there are also very good and fast aggro decks…

    • Zeromant sagt:

      Yeah, it’s just as I said: „Note, though, that “slow” does not mean that you can ignore the existence of aggressive decks and completetly eschew early defense – it just means that defensive decks are generally favored over aggressive ones, and that you need to address the lategame and boardstall situations more extensively than in fast formats, which are mainly about not falling back early and winning races.“

      I think in most drafts it is correct for 2 players to try an aggressive strategy, rarely for 3. Aggro decks have games where they easily overrun an opponent, but their average draws are usually stopped by the average draws of slower decks, provided that those are built well.

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