At the end of December another season ended and that usually means that there is current block draft for the Top 8 players in Najada League. This year I decided not to play much magic and it shows hell a lot on my PWP. From having two byes on GP to zero this year. Anyway I somehow managed to be in the top 8 in the last season. Khans of Tarkir changed that. I really like the set. I loved all the prereleases, releases and the few drafts I played (3?).
Because of the fact that in the before before last^_~ Top 8 Draft I really ended up badly because of not knowing the cards (not that my deck would be bad) I decided to play one draft with the set not to end up last. We were two with same record but I was the one who came second.
Anyway this Top 8 Draft came out of the blue. I haven't played much in Najada's tournament because I primarily played one format twice a week which meant that I spent twice less time in Najada then last time (because I was attending tournaments in other game store). Anyway even with this I came up high enough to be near the top 8 (15 points away so if I would have wanted I could have possibly made it). I did not reach it for sure though. But strange coincidences happen and I ended up playing in the draft. This time I knew more or less what to expect because I actually played with the set a bit (and even that was way more than with any other set post-new-Ravnica) but the other players were drafting it for few months.
I opened my pack and saw 5 cards I wanted to pick. It wasn't the rare but 2 uncommons and 3 commons. Two of these cards would send me into 3 color deck and I wasn't really sure that was what I wanted to do. In the end I decided to pick the rare to make my decision easier - Duneblast which seemed as a good back up plan anyway. So my colors where set - Junk. In the next pack I picked Abzan Guide. This was followed by two Tusked Colossodons which I wasn't really proud of. One seemed to be enough for the deck...but I did not see anything better in the pack either. Next few picks were actually red (Trumpet Blast and Act of Reason), there weren't any white/green or black creatures present or they were completely useless. I picked Rite of the Serpent because it was the only removal spell that went my way (did not even manage to play it during the tourney). After the first pack I wasn't even sure if I should still try to pick Junk cards. I collected two Throttles and some strange creatures like War Behemoth and Salt Road Patrol and I was ready to pick anything with Morph I could possibly play (Abomination of Gudul). Nothing awesome...small and cheap creatures were inexistant. My five last picks were all banners. Three of them were Sultai. ^_^. Anyway in my third pack I opened Sagu Mauler so I simply had to pick that. Next I managed to pick Sultai Scavengers and Swarm of Bloodflies. That was good but still nothing for early game...no walls, no little abzan creatures with outlast or...what could I have? Well any 2/2 for 2 or other 'Bear' would make me happy...
In the end I played this deck and I was actually quite content with it except...the Banners that's something I really did not want to play...but I had no other choice.
Feat of Resistance
3x Sultai Banner
Salt Road Patrol
Swarm of Bloodflies
Rite of the Serpent
2x Sultai Scavenger
I somehow managed 2:0. Sagu Mauler won me two games and Swarm of the Bloodflies won another one. In the fourth game I simply had better board presence. I lost against Legolas whose deck was full of good cards He played a four color deck with Sidisi, some 5/5s, Sagu Mauler (and Rattleclaw Mystic) and some nice tempo cards. I got mana screwed in one of the games and in the second one I just couldn't stand a chance. Killing Sidisi or anything that was already on the table was only possible with Duneblast but I did not live long enough to even cast it (I did not reach even 7 lands).
In the second draft my first pick was actually a random card and I passed Dragon-Style Twins. I did not really care how I would end up and was too tired to even think straight. Anyway the card I picked was actually white. I started picking Junk cards once again but this time I wanted to try the outlast theme (that was a really BAD idea). Anyway I somehow ended up with Ainok Bond-Kin, Tuskguard Captain and Longshot Squad (but I passed the Deathtouch one...*facepalm*). I also got Armament Corps. Removal was bad and I did not have any back up plan^_^. I also passed one more Abzan Guide (picked Throttle instead because I really needed removal). Not sure if that was a good idea. But well my deck lacked Morphs and it contained creatures that actually would have to stare at other creatures on the other side of the table...that wasn't good (you know I'm not good with attacking and I had hard time figuring out what abilities my creatures have). In my second pack I expected something good and big like Wingmate Roc^_^ but instead I was sooo lucky to open a foil Flooded Strand so I picked it without thinking and went through the rest of the pack. I passed Flying Crane Technique hoping it wouldn't kill me and waited for something from the next pack. I picked some green creatures and each time I saw a card I didn't know I picked it (Bitter Revelation - interesting that's actually a common...hm, Tuskguard Captain, Kheru Bloodsucker). I was like...'Oh man, I opened a foil fetchland, however this ends I'll be leaving with the most money - most probably^_^). So to my surprise in the last pack I opened Wingmate Roc! I picked some lands in the last pack and some blue cards that I could possibly splash but I had only junk lands so in the end...no blue.
Chief of the Scale
Salt Road Patrol
Smite the Monstrous
2x Tusked Colossodon
In the fourth/first round I played a mirror match. That was the worst that could happen to me...I outlasted my creatures, my opponent did the same, I started attacking later (kind of forgot that my guys had first strike and trample and could get through deathtouch anyway) but it was already too late and I somehow ridiculously died. All I needed was a bigger beater but such a creature did not show up (except for starting to attack earlier). In the second game I lost due to once again not being able to draw a bigger creature and I also lacked second green source for some reason. (had the problem all three rounds so it was most probably my mana base being wrong). After this round I had to either win twice or not 'win' any prizes. 'win' because the draft is for free and all of us get some prizes (yeah, ending up in the top 8 actually takes time and money so we deserve it^_~ or well those that end up there that is). I won the last two rounds^_^. In the last round I lost the first game due to being mana screwed. In the second game I got a good hand though. I had some smaller creatures and two colossodons. I played one and waited for my opponent to triple block it. He expected a removal spell but still blocked it. I did not have the removal ... but I had the second 6/5 in my hand. That was already too much for him. I chumped his attack with one of my guys so I could play Hooting Mandrills and Longshot Squad and the game was over then. In the third game I just got an ideal curve and won as well.
In the seven packs I won I opened another Flooded Strand^_^. The tournament was really awesome except few moments in which I had the urge to strangle some of the players but even that wasn't enough to ruin my mood that day (partly yes, I was pretty upset in the last round, and after being mana screwed in game 1 I did not really see myself as the winner of the match...but that soon ended after I saw my opener).
So now I'm seriously considering playing in enough tournaments to get to the top 8 once again. Can I do it? Without paying a fortune for it? Anyway if I choose to try I'll need to figure out what to play in addition to legacy or in general attend more tournamnets. (waiting for the banlist!!) In the meantime I have one week to figure out how to collect 400EUR to pay for the rent...(but I still have quite a lot of foil cards I don't really need^^)