Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Growing Pains

Hi everybody!

So not much updates recently, as I'm going through some growing pains with the BUG deck. I feel like I'm getting better with it. The deck is in flux--I don't even remember exactly what's in it! But I think I'm getting closer to where I want it to be.

I don't really want to get into details about tournament reports, because .. well, mostly because I don't remember a lot of the details. So I'll just go over some things I've noticed.

* I tried cutting back from 4 to 3 Kiora because a lot of times she was just a bad Fog or Elvish Visionary. I'm realizing that I'm way too cautious about using her -1. I really want her to survive and to bubble all the threats. But I need to let her die sometimes so I can dig and find more permanent answers. I love Urban Evolution, but maybe the 2nd one of those needs to be the 4th Kiora. I can -1 her, immediately replace her, often ramp, and if she dies the next turn, then hey, that's less damage coming at me.
* I typed up my decklist, and was immediately horrified by all the random 1- and 2-ofs. I'm going to consolidate that.
* I'm always happy to see my singleton Jace AOT. I'm taking that as a sign that maybe he shouldn't be just a singleton.
* Far // Away is cute, but it's usually not what I want at any given time.
* Essence Scatter is another card I'm usually happy to see, especially against all those annoying creature decks (seriously, what's up with that?).
* Mana is sometimes an issue. I've been having to mulligan a lot because of color issues. I suspect swapping some of the Temple of Deceits out for the new G/B temple will help. Why can't I just run 9 Sylvan Caryatids? Or Farseek? In the meantime, I'm gonna try to cut back on some of the mana-thirstiness of the early game (I'm looking at you, Dissolve and Hero's Downfall) and/or up the number of dual lands.
* I achieved The Combo three times last night (overload Rift + Reap), and it was awesome. One time, it prompted an immediate obsession, and the other times it resulted in crazy grindy topdeck battles, including a near-death experience against aggro where I was hanging by a thread at 1 life. It was ridiculous and awesome, and I want that 2nd Reap in the board for the slower matchups.
* Nylea's Disciple is super sweet against Aggro. Most of the time I have a Caryatid (or two) and/or a Courser (or two) out, so I gain a bunch of life, and then she just sits there and clogs the board.

Otherwise, I've been doing lots of Judging lately. I got another SCG Standard Open under my belt. Fun, hard work, pretty uneventful. Working the booth was fun, but really busy. It's also interesting to see the growth of these events firsthand. The first time they came to Madison, they got about 250. Next time in Milwaukee, it was 350. This time, 600+. Dang. They get some criticism about their buying and selling business, but I can't fault them at all for the success of their Organized Play program. They run great, quality events, and it's always a pleasure being a part of it.

Oh yeah, I guess previews for the new set are rolling out. Cool? I guess that's cool. I'm not super excited about anything specific so far, but there's plenty to come.

Okay, well that's it for now. Thanks for reading!