2011-12 Precon Championships: Round 5 and the Leaderboard
What is it that makes people vote for ‘lesser’ teams? Is it blind loyalty to a childhood favourite? A stubborn and unwavering devotion? Perhaps faith that winning days may come back around someday? Surely, there is something in the fact that every organised sports team anywhere has at least a handful of fans, and many have more. Perhaps instead, they’re waiting for that one glorious day where the stars aline and the gods of competition smile on them, and they become the David to another’s Goliath.
This is precisely what happened in the climactic finish to the Tinsman Division this past weekend. Everyone’s favourite juggernaut, Graveborn, was unanimously picked for victory, and it did not disappoint as it put paid to Blood and Fire. But then a funny thing happened. Innistrad’s humble Intro Pack, Spectral Legions, managed to outmaneuver the favourite, Deathfed. It then stunned the preconstructed world by standing up to Graveborn, and clinching the division!
Does it have it in it to pull off a third upset in a row? With another top-flight deck waiting for it from the Nagle Division in the form of Hold the Line, it’s going to have to if it wants to advance to the finals and content for immortality. We won’t know for awhile, however, as we now shift our focus over to the Turian Division in the Forsythe Conference.
For our Prediction League, we’ve had a little bumping around at the top, with a couple of the leaders claiming two points out of the three on offer through canny picking of Spectral Legion. Here’s the updated leaderboard:
Next up, this weekend’s matches! For those participating in the League, let us know your picks in the comments below. The matches go live this Sunday, so you’ll have until then to tender your calls.
Finally, here’s some information about each of this season’s Turian contenders.
Set: Avacyn Restored
Detail: The last of the mono-coloured, aggressive Event Decks to date, this was the Zombies’ chance to shine. It was a reasonable result, workable if not glamourous, though it boasts a solid removal suite and a lot of inexpensive creatures. It faces a tough challenge right out of the gate, with another Event Deck head-to-head against Illusionary Might! (Reviews)
Colours: Blue, Red
Detail: Red/Blue decks have been offering some intriguing lines of play as late, and Eldritch Onslaught is no exception. With a pair of Burning Vengeances build right in and flashback spells galore, this is a deck a little light on creatures but heavy on spells and effects! (Reviews)
Grab for Power
Colours: Blue, Black
Set: Magic 2012
Detail: Forget the Rune-Scarred Demon for a moment, strong as it is, and let’s look at the most memorable thing about this deck: the three-card combo. Playing off a cycle in Magic 2012, it contains a trio of artifacts that are utilitarian on their own, but supercharge once you’ve landed the three. Of course, with one of these a rare, it can take a bit of doing to put it all in place, but once you do there’s not a lot that can stand in your way! (Reviews)
Colours: White, Black, Red
Rares: Akroma Angel of Fury, Akroma’s Vengeance, Angel of Despair, Angelic Arbiter, Avatar of Slaughter, Basandra Battle Seraph, Bladewing the Risen, Comet Storm, Dread Cacodemon, Earthquake, Fallen Angel, Kaalia of the Vast, Malfegor, Mana-Charged Demon, Master Warcraft, Oros the Avenger, Reiver Demon, Stranglehold, Tariel Reckoner of Souls, Voice of All
Details: The Commander decks thus far have been a very mixed bag, though none have advanced very far in the rankings. Perhaps Kaalia can succeed where the others have failed? In our playtesting, she was consistently the fastest of the series, often risking emptying her hand before the game was through. No doubt part of this was due to her role as a Commander, cheating fat Angels, Demons, and Dragons from hand to the board. Can the deck thrive with her in the library? (Reviews)
Colours: White, Blue
Set: Magic 2012
Detail: Effectively mono-Blue, this Event Deck presents an aggro archetype in a colour not often known for them. By harnessing the power of Illusions- cheap but powerful creatures with a fatal drawback- the deck looks to overwhelm in the red zone and crush its opponent behind an unstoppable tide of momentum. (Reviews)
Set: Duel Decks: Venser vs Koth
Detail: Named ‘Erupt and Overwhelm,’ the deck anchored by Koth of the Hammer is filled with Mountains and the mages who love them. Designed to be the speed and power pitted against Venser’s trickery and guile, Koth has a very real possibility of putting some of the deck’s opponent’s between the hammer and the anvil. (Reviews)
Colours: Red, Green
Set: Dark Ascension
Detail: One of many decks that takes a set-specific mechanic and builds around it, Monstrous Surprise embodies that moment in the horror movie when you think the monster is dead, only to have it rise up for one last moment of horror. With undying, not only do they come back, but they come back even bigger than before! (Reviews)
Colours: Black, Green
Set: Dark Ascension
Detail: One of the most exciting Event Decks to have come down the pike, Spiraling Doom builds around Birthing Pod, letting you work your way up a toolbox chain of creatures to get the right solution at the right time. Although perhaps a Pod short of Standard spec, the deck puts the pedal to the metal once you land your first one, and it only gets worse for your opponent from there! (Reviews)
Good luck to all participants, in both the Preconstructed Championship as well as the Prediction League! We’ll be back with exciting precon action this weekend- until then, enjoy the Return to Ravnica and Onslaught deck reviews!