2014-15 Precon Championships: Round 2 and the Leaderboard
Welcome back to the Precon Championships! The 2014-15 season has just kicked off with the opening round of action as the Nagle Division went from eight contenders, down to four. Not only that, but a number of contenders have joined the Prediction League, competing for a treasure trove of prizes including an Eldritch Moon Prerelease Pack and more than a dozen boosters. If you’re joining us for the first time, there’s still plenty of action ahead- make sure to get your predictions posted to be in the hunt!
More than two-thirds of our predictors felt that the Red Magic 2015 Sample Deck would be grist for the Price of Glory mill. After all, lifegain is an effective strategy against Red burn, and that’s certainly part of the deck’s strategy. Said Jeskai Angel, “The sample decks have the potential to be insanely advantaged over real 60 or 100 card decks, since they have vastly better chances of drawing into their strongest cards.”
This is an interesting perspective, but is it true? While there’s certainly a consistency boost to be gained from building a 30-card deck over a 60, that presupposes you’re running playsets of cards (drawing a card you have four of in a 30-card deck is twice as easy as a 60-card one). The Red Sample deck, however, runs no more than two copies of any card. If you were to dump two Red decks together into a 60-card deck, that deck would have only two rares and eight uncommons- less than even what an Intro Pack gets.
Regardless, Jeskai Angel saw something many missed, and as a result is tied for first place at the top of the table. Well done!
For our second match, Kiora’s Duel Deck took on the Intro Pack from Fate Reforged, Stampeding Hordes. Jeskai Angel again shared some insight, stating that “It looks like Stampeding Hordes has a bunch of bad creatures, while Kiora has a bunch of value creatures and strong tempo cards. I dislike the character, but her deck looks strong here. Kiora is my vote.”
Insidious, meanwhile, opted to back a hot hand. “I would have bet for Conquering Hordes to beat Kiora in 8 games out of 10, but sometimes the two games that Kiora wins are the ones that count.” The pick was Kiora, “obviously on a win streak.”
Next up was the day’s most divisive game, Cruel Plots versus the Black Magic 2015 Player’s Guide. The inclusion of the Player’s Guide decks has been controversial, with some contending that they’re not actual preconstructed decks. Ertai’s Lament has long taken a fairly liberal position on the definition of a preconstructed deck, which to us is defined as any deck constructed by Wizards of the Coast (or its licensed agents). We have, in the past, done reviews on the decks from the Duels from the Planeswalker game (not the officially-released Duels of the Planeswalker paper decks, but the ones from the actual game) as well as the Mirage Block Theme Decks which were never released in a paper form, but rather a creation for Magic: the Gathering Online.
What almost everyone could agree on, though, was the power level for the Player’s Guide deck, but Cruel Plots surpassed most everyone’s expectation to pull past its rival and take the match!
For the final match, we saw the Fate and Fury deck- the “Event Deck” decklist from the eponymous Clash Pack, zip past another Fate Reforged Intro Pack, Surprise Attack. There was no surprise in the outcome, though, as Fate and Fury blasted past to contend for the next round. Refresh_daemon remarked, somewhat prophetically, “having twelve ramp creatures beats the three Embodiments and the bombs in F&F are just so much better than Attack’s, I think even the uncertainty the morphs bring and the tempo plays aren’t going to be able to overcome just how much faster F&F can go big.”
Here’s our Prediction Leaderboard!
As always, if you notice a discrepancy, please let us know immediately.
And now… the next round of predictions! You’ll be picking the winners of three matches this week- the last two matches and then the winner of the Nagle Division.
Game One: Red versus Kiora
Game Two: Cruel Plots versus Fate and Fury
Game Three: Winner of Game One versus Winner of Game Two
It’s not too late to jump in if you haven’t already, plenty of games ahead to catch up with. The deadline for this week’s predictions is 11:59pm this Friday night.