23 Mar 2015

Pre-Release: Dragons of Tarkir - Magic

This is going up late since I'm having issues posting the hyperlinks and images. I'll have them up afterwork and find out what I did wrong - it's normally my fault.

I know there are some who read my posts so I’ll go into some details about the release of Khans of Tarkin Block that you may not be familiar with. Each Block – in this case Khans of Tarkir, is made up of many sets. Dragons of Tarkir is the last set of the block following Khans of Tarkir (the first set) and Fates Reforged (the second set).

My favorite planeswalkers are Sorin Markov, Ugin, and Gideon Jura – Ashiok is neat but he’s story is not yet fully fleshed out for me to like him for anything more than being an awesome Planeswalker and being in my colours; Black and Blue. Sorin Markov got his third version in Khans of Tarkir, while in Fates Reforged, Ugin made his first appearance. So this Block had a lot in it that I was looking forward to.

Khans started out with a focus on ‘wedges’. What the fuck does that mean? Well each colour in magic has two allied colours and two enemy colours. If you look at the back of the magic card you’ll see two colours flanking each colour with two colours across from it.

Example: Blue has White and Black as its allied colours while Green and Red are enemy colours.

There are five Clans made up from the colours of a wedge. Each ‘wedge’ is made up of two allied colours and their shared enemy colour.

Example: The Temur Horde is made up of Green and Red as the allied colours with Blue as the enemy colour.

After the time travel and history rewrite in Fates Reforged, the clans lost the enemy colour and were now only a colour allied pair. Also each of the clans changed, now led by the dragon that had in the previous timeline had hunted and wiped out. So Sultai did not wipe out Silumgar instead Silumgar conquered the Sultai.

When I played Khans of Tarkir, I felt that the Jeskai (Blue/White and Red) had too much ‘fucking about’ and not enough ‘getting it done’. There was not enough of a bite to the Jeskai so during the Fates Reforged I chose to switch to Sultai (Blue/Black and Green) but me and Lady Bear got sick and we pulled out of the pre-release. So I never got to play but when I looked at our pre-release packs I was much happier with my card pool.

So this Sunday me and Lady Bear played the two-headed giant pre-release of Dragon of Tarkir. I stayed with Silumgar (the new name for Sultai – now Black/Blue) and Lady Bear played Dromoka (the new identity for Azban – White/Green). In this set you get a seeded pack of Dragons of Tarkir as well as four other booster packs in the set with a single Fates Reforged pack as the sixth pack. Because it was two-headed giant, each round was only one game instead of best two out of three.

My pool was ok. I had some good cards but I lacked some heavy hitters for the end game – which is more important in two-headed giant sealed events because the games go longer. Lady Bear did much better. In her Fates Reforged pack she drew Dromoka and in one of her Dragons of Tarkir packs she drew the new dragon lord, Dromoka. With all her cards she had a great range of creatures and she had some great late game bombs including a few more dragons from her ‘wedge’.

Each game we did a full board wipe mid game. We also never played any of our large creatures to push the game to the end.

In game one we were hit for hit and we got our opponents down to 12 hit points while we stood at 26. Then they dropped Sarkahn Unbroken and it was ‘Dragon Time’ and they proceeded to beat us up with the dragon making machine.

Game two we did pretty well, once more getting our opponents mid game with a board wipe but we failed to draw any large creatures to push to the game to an end. Instead with some fancy Green spells they dropped a bomb (a large creature) and put lifelink on it – we blocked it but it gained them 14 life and suddenly instead of winning by ten we were loosing by six.

Our last game was our favorite, once more we dropped them and we were looking at a win. We had over twenty hit points and they were at seven. We had our win… until Ugin showed up. The players across from us had drawn one of the most rare cards in Fates Reforged.

Ugin my favorite of Dragons in most fantasy settings proceeded to take us apart bit by bit.

We lost but at least we lost to Ugin.

Afterwards due to our early mornings, we were turning into Pumpkins and left the event with three games left to play. Dawn Seeker and Pale Rider were partners and they rocked with a 2-2 but I think they left after game four.

So all in all a good time – even though I lost my spin down counter and that upset me. I really liked that spin down die... sad face. Awe well.

I really want to draft this block as a mixed set and I think it would be fun.
Side note - due to work getting all crazy, no time to put out my planned week of favorite cards from the set.

- Cheers

Dozer