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Author Topic: Small HL tournament in Denmark    (Read 2999 times)
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« on: 06-04-2009, 11:08:34 AM »

Highlander Tournament 4.4.2009

Warning: This is not very interesting to read unless you have some kind of connection to the arrangement! Now intro

I had the honour to arrange the first (From what I know) Highlander Tournament in Denmark. We tried to gather as many people as we could and we ended up being 12 players on the list. That isn't much, but we couldn't hope for more. We set up some nice and cosy environments for Magic: The Gathering and we waited untill people showed up this saturday morning

Well let’s just say this right away. We didn’t get as many as we had calculated us to be. Rune, Rasmus, Jakob, Patrick C and Oscar all chose not to show up. We ended up being 7 players and that had to be fine for one of the first Highlander Tournaments in Denmark. We planned four rounds of 60 minutes with a final in the end. It was free buy-in and the prize was strawberries and some chocolate for the first and second prize winners to split.

I’m writing this article from my point of view. I’ve written down some notes from each match and here is how I went:

Round 1 vs. Jakob Sørensen
G1. I knew the fact that Jakob is playing mono blue with splash of red. A wizard deck with burn and counter back-up. Jakob won the dice roll and chose to play first.

The first few turns started out slow. Both players played lands and nothing else. I suspended a Ancestral Vision though and in turn 3 I resolved a Jace Beleren. I didn’t have much luck with the cards even though I had massive card advantage. My opponent had Mind Stone and Terrain Generator so he ran from me in the speed and he pressured his advantage with a suspended Aeon Chronicler for 4 pretty early in the game. I removed the last counter from Ancestral Vision and targeted myself. Jakob played Swerve and I had to Dissipate it. He had Cryptic Command in hand and the mana for it. Ancestral Vision targeted Jakob for 3 cards. The following few turns I felt the lack of cards in my hand compared to my opponent wasn’t enough to stop him.

At the end of game 1 I targeted Aeon Chronicler, who had become massively huge, with a Mortify. My opponent played Snapback in response targeted Aeon. If he could return Aeon it would seal him the game. I had to play Force of Will for 0 mana. He responded once again. This time with a Boomerang. Aeon was returned and there was nothing I could do the following turns. He resolved his very own Jace Beleren and suspended Aeon. I was overrun and had to concede if I wanted to win the match before the time would run out. 0-1

G2. I suspended Ancestral Vision turn 1 and felt I had a great start. We both played lands the following turns. Turn 4 I resolved a Bitterblossom and knew it would win me the game. Jakob didn’t have any counter spell and the very next turn I therefore resolved a Liliana Vess. The game was almost sealed here, but Jakob played Seal of Fire and Banefire and beat the planeswalker. I was far ahead and could easily resolve Empyrial Archangel. Along with Bitterblossom it sealed the game for me. 1-1

G3. We both had terrible starting hands. My opponent had to mulligan to 6 cards and I had to go even further down to 5. Jakob only had 2 lands and failed to play a land in turn 3. At the end of turn I played Esper Charm for refilling my hand. I untapped and felt like pressing the advantage and played Vindicate on his Dreadship Reef with 2 counters (The other land was a Mountain). He removed the counters in response and played Capsize targeting his own land. He avoided the catastrophe, but I was far ahead now. The following turn I played Demonic Tutor and fetched Library of Alexandria with 6 cards in hand. I played the Library and waited 2 turns. It was almost gg. Few turns later I resolved Liliana Vess. It got burned away by the blue-red player. My Morphling the next turn went all the way. It got a little help from Demonfire and Bogardan Hellkite 5 damage. It got tight after game 1 and Jakob had a few bad draws unfortunately for him. 2-1

Round 2 vs. Henrik Esmann
G1. I had no idea what Henrik would play. I won the dice roll and chose to play first.

I played turn 1 Library of Alexandria. I knew it would enhance my chances by a lot. What was almost even worse for my opponent was a turn 2 Bitterblossom. I know from standard how hard a turn 2 Bitterblossom can be, and I had no idea how Henrik should be able to stand against both a Bitterblossom AND a LoA. Henrik quickly responded the following turn with a Seal of Primordium. I didn’t get a single Faerie-Rogue creature token out of my Blossom, but LoA got to draw me 3 cards before it’s activity later got ruined.

Henrik played Dusk Urchins and in the same turn I killed it with Lightning Helix. I did not want to take the 5 damage over two turns and more than anything: I did not want him to get the card advantage that would follow.

Turn 5 Henrik played Eternal Witness and I knew it would be too dangerous at that point of the game. I had no creature removal for it and he could return Dusk Urchins. I therefore played Force of Will for 0 and took the card dis-advantage. It ruined my LoA activity, but it was necessary. The following turn I resolved Liliana Vess. My opponent played Nezumi, Graverobber and River Kelpie the turn after. Luckily I got a Fact or Ficion and in his End of Turn it revealed my opponent:

Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker
Shadowmage Infiltrator
Ajani Vengeant
Darksteel Ingot

A power pile of cards. Henrik chose to give me either Nicol Bolas or the rest. I chose the rest, because I only had 6 lands in play and no in hand. I also wanted to get to 7 cards in hand for Library. My LoA was now useful again. I cleared the board with Damnation and still had Liliana in play. My opponent took his turn, unearthed Corpse Connoisseur (A card he had discarded earlier for Vess) and killed Liliana with it. Henrik now had nothing but a 2/2 River Kelpie in play and had no useful cards in the graveyard. I untapped my lands and played the card I’ve just drawn: a Morphling. Morphling was perfect for this situation. Henrik tried to stabilize with a Haakon, Stromgald Scourge together with Attrition. That combo is quite awesome, but it can’t touch a shrouded Morphling. Some later I resolved Stillmoon Cavalier and since I had already beated with Morphling for 5 and 5, Stillmoon sealed the first game. 1-0

G2. The early turns resolved in some early creatures from Henrik’s side. I got a morphed creature to play who turned out to be Exalted Angel the following turn. There was no stopping it. My opponent didn’t get the luck to draw a removal spell. He did, however, play a Golgari Grave-Troll for 5 mana. It was 0/0 and went straight to the graveyard as a static ability. Pretty smart, because he now could dredge the next turn and maybe get something up and going. While my opponent played a creature who went straight to the graveyard I got 4 life each turn and got the time to play some stuff. I played Time Warp to attack once again with Exalted. I felt it was the right thing to do against an agro-based dredge deck.

In the following turn (My extra turn) I drew Panoptic Mirror and now the attack turned out to be bad luck. I played the Mirror and passed the turn well knowing what I was going to do in my next upkeep. Not much happened in my opponents turn and in my upkeep I let Panoptic Mirror’s triggered ability go to the stack and responded by tapping 2 lands, tapping Mirror and removing Regrowth from the game. I played Regrowth in my upkeep and returned Time Warp. Henrik couldn’t stop my next turn’s Time Warp and I got as many turns as I wanted in a row. He conceded and didn’t wait for my win. 2-0

Round 3 vs. Kristian Kiær Kamp
G1. I knew Kristian were playing a WUBrg control. The deck looks a lot like my own. On the paper this looked like it would surely be my strongest opponent.

Kristian started out playing a Ponder and we both made draw-land-go turns. My hand was lands, Mind Stone, Dissipate, Fact or Fiction and Ajani Vengeant. I knew resolving either a Fact or the Vengeant would almost win me the game. I played a turn 2 Mind Stone and one turn later in my opponents third EOT I baited with FoF. He spend 2 of his 3 lands to Negate my FoF. That was the right decision any day, but it costed him the game. I untapped and resolved Ajani Vengeant. Kristian didn’t get an answer and my planeswalker won the game with the ultimatum.

G2. In my opponents turn 2 EOT I played Tainted Pact. I only play 2x Plains, 2x Swamp and 2x Island for duplicate cards. I already had a Swamp in play, so I could almost get any card in my library. The first card that was revealed, was a Mind Shatter. I chose to keep the very first card, because I had the lands in hand to play it for a lot very soon. It would be a fantastic card to resolve against a control player. Kristian failed to make a land drop in turn 5, so in my turn I tried to Vindicate one of his 2 blue lands. He played Cancel.

Kristian took his turn and targeted my earlier cycled Eternal Dragon with his Animate Dead. I knew I now faced a 4/5 flying dragon, but I was okay with it, because in my next turn I could Mind Shatter him for 4. I played Complicate on Animate Dead for 3 mana and Kristian payed the 3 and tapped out with the exception of one single land. I untapped and played Mind Shatter for 4 and that was exactly the whole hand.

I took a beat and played Oath of Druids right away. I took a beat again from Eternal, but I had Pulse of the Fields in hand and he had no counter spells because his hand was all gone. I stabilized at 16, 12 and 16 life. After Eternal had dealt damage the turn after Oath had hit play, Kristian chose to play a Condemn on his own creature to gain life and to stop my Oath. Luckily I had Dissipate and Oath therefore revealed us the first card in the library: Shadowmage Infiltrator (Finkel). Not the biggest creature in my deck (Actually the only small one together with Stillmoon) and it was quite unlucky, but my opponent only had Eternal, so he would not be able to block my Fear creature. I passed the turn. Kristian untapped and played Story Circle. In response I put Gifts Ungiven to play. I had not thought the decision through. The idea was to get some counter spells with Gifts, but I changed my mind. I decided Circle was not that big a thread anyways. Gifts found me:

Panoptic Mirror
Time Warp
Honden of Seeing Winds

I went for my combo, Regrowth and Honden because Honden would win me the game. Kristian was still in top-deck mode and had no cards in hand. He could not give me TW and Mirro. He could not give me Regrowth. He could give me Mirror and Honden, but Mirror is just too dangerous. He had no choice but to give me the enchantment and Time Warp. That was just as I had predicted on forehand.

Kristian let Story Circle resolve naming “Blue” for Shadowmage Infiltrator. Kristian kept attacking with Eternal Dragon to force me into tapping 3 lands each turn. Pulse of the Fields was strong and I stayed at 12 and 16. It looked like a stand still, but for the fact that I had just got 2 great cards to hand.

I played Honden of Seeing Winds in my turn and I now knew that my opponent had a serious clock with the card advantage I was fronting. Kristian attacked again with Eternal and I played Pulse. The game very slowly developed for my benefits. In Kristians EOT I Terminated my own Finkel. It was useless and now I could Oath in my upkeep again. It resolved. In my upkeep Oath once again revealed a creature card as the first card of the library: Akroma, Angel of Wrath. Kristian had bad luck for several turns with nothing but lands. When Honden of Seeing Winds is in play, one have to find an answer sometime soon. Eternal Dragon chump-blocked once, but Akroma flew all the way to victory and sealed the game. 2-0

The Tournament was over and I was 3-0. We could have played a fourth round and a final, but we agreed on the fact that we did not have to play more matches. I’m sorry I’m only writing from my point of view. I only had notes from my own matches. The day went fine and it was cosy environments to play some Magic: the Gathering in. We all had a good time and it was nice to see some great plays even though it was a casual tournament. On Tuesday I’m announcing the first Highlander Tournament in Faraos Cigarer København. I do not expect us to be many the first times, but I hope we can establish an environment of players who will come regularly and play some singleton. It will be 20kr buy-in and booster packs for the winners. If no one shows up, we’ll concider it failed and we’ll try again in some months. So be ready and finish your 100 cards highlander decks. It’s “great” fun Wink Thx for this time and see you all again.

Patrick Kassow

There can be only one
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