Eager to tear into the brand-shiny-new Event Decks released for Mirrodin Besieged, Jimi and I broke them open, sleeved them up, and laid out the playmats- time for battle! We had one guideline we established straightaway, and that was that we would not be sideboarding between matches. As preconstructed decks don’t ordinarily include them, and they’re more a fixture of Constructed strategy, we wanted to battle the two decks against one another as we would with any precon- stock right out of the box.
Here are the notes from the confrontation. Warning: it ain’t pretty.
The waiting and anticipation is finally over. It isn’t often that Wizards releases a new line of products for Magic, but the much-anticipated Event Decks can now take their place alongside the Duel Decks, Premium Deck Series, Intro Packs, and other such preconstructed products. And the verdict? Well, taking a stab we’d say they’re not as good as what some folks hoped, but far better than what many feared.
When news of the Event Decks was loosed into the community some months ago, speculation was rampant as to what they might contain. The decks were positioned as “FNM-ready,” perhaps not a deck you could win a PTQ with but certainly one that would give you a shot at your local comic or hobby store. That deliberately-vague depiction left tremendous ground for guesswork. Would they have a slew of rares? Mythics? Planeswalkers? Jaces?
For those entertaining the end-spectrum of such fervent hope, prepare to be disappointed. The Event Decks- and there are two for Mirrodin Besieged (and two for the next set, ‘Action’)- contain exactly zero mythics. Nope, not a planeswalker between them. What you do get, though, is a finely-tuned deck that includes seven rares and a host of uncommons, so you certainly get some card value right off the top. In addition, each is packed in an attractive cardboard box, including a divider (for your deck versus your sideboard) and a Mirrodin Besieged “spindown” life counter. Nice attention to detail: the deck box holds the deck perfectly when they’re sleeved.
The real question, however, isn’t so much content as positioning. Do they live up to the hype? The card list is static- you know what you’re going to get when you crack one open- but the Friday Night Magic scene is anything but. Some are very casual, some very competitive, and the majority likely a proper mix. I’ve gone from battling against someone’s Orzhov-themed lifedrainer deck in one matchup right to the guy with playsets of Jaces and Baneslayers (back when she was a hotter commodity). You’ll find folks playing “netdecks of the stars” to those with a modified intro pack. It’s a meta that, from where Wizards is sitting, is virtually impossible to plan for. So how then do you construct these decks?