Would Mono-Red Aggro Fail you?! The answer may surprise you! (Magic the Gathering PPTQ story)

Reinvigorated by a shower and copious amounts of sugar I can retell the actual events of the PPTQ. It was a 5 Round Swiss tournament for an invitation to the normal PTQ (with other prices such as money, and boxes of Fate Reforged). I was incredibly anxious as the round started. I’ve followed what decks were topping (and I knew my deck had become a rogue deck). Still what I quickly realized was that I was doing with Magic what I did at every tournament for Yugioh. I went there with a power-creeped deck and would have to struggle to win. Somehow resolved by this logic I began the first round.

Round 1: vs Abzan Midrange

My opponent was playing an Abzan Midrange deck edited with new Fate Reforged cards.

Game 1: I lost game 1 to one such card Tasigur, the Golden Fang, whose’s 5 toughness proved to hard to remove.

Game 2: I opened the perfect Akroan Crusader Rush and dealt 12 damage on turn 3. I gamed him well before he could establish his board.

Game 3: My dream team was drowned in sorrow before Siege Rhino stomped me into oblivion.

Loss 1-2

Round 2: Vs Sultai Whip

My opponent was playing Sultai Whip (also with new Fate Reforged cards).

Game 1: Looking back on my life total and notes all I can tell was that I won the game using Rabblemaster and dealt 13 damage in one turn.

Game 2: His Gurmaw Angler and Torrent Elemental crushed me with the devastating Whip of Erebos to back them up (This card kills my deck since Lifelink heals away all the damage I deal). This was the only game I both sided and resolved Anger of the Gods (Which killed Sidisi and her zombie pal, but not the Angler).

Game 3: Judging from the life totals I was able to get him down to 7 life before he stabilized with Whip and got back up to 24 beating me along the way.

Loss 1-2

Round 3: Vs Abzan Midrange

My opponent was playing a very standard Abzan Midrange and he made very questionable plays during the match.

Game 1: I won with Foundry Street Denizen as he suffered the dreaded Mana screw.

Game 2: So I knew he had Drown in Sorrow in his hand thanks to Courser of Kruphix. However rather than play it he used Ajani Steadfast to ultimate Sorin, Solemn Visitor. The Sorin Emblem did beat me, but I had signed my own deathwish by keeping a hand full of enablers with no turn 1 creatures to play. To clarify when he had Drown I had played Hordeling Outburst in desperation to get a few blockers. He still got me without having to Drown though.

Game 3: I swept him quickly dealing 10 damage on turn 3 using 2 Foundry Street Denizens pumped by a sudden Hordeling Outburst alongside a 2/3 Monastery Swiftspear. The game ended on turn 4.

Won 2-1

Round 4: Vs Blue/Black Control

This was one deck I didn’t expect to play. I thought Control was dead, but with the new Crux of Fate and Ugin, the Spirit Dragon this guy was trying to keep it alive (Not that he cast either against me I just happened to see him play them during a later game).

Game 1: His only offensive card was Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver and I plowed through him. His gain 2 life land was my biggest annoyance.

Game 2: I sided out all of my creature interaction (Hammerhand/Coordinated Assault) for Hordeling Outbursts and direct burn. Once again only Ashiok and a well timed Whelming Wave came to protect him and again I ran right through him.

Won 2-0

Round 5: Vs Blue/White Control

My opponent was playing control based around Elspeth, Sun’s Champion and Pearl Lake Ancient. Unfortunately for me he said that he lost to a mono-red deck earlier that day. From that loss he learned how to perfectly counter my deck.

Game 1: I dealt him a steady amount of damage, but he quickly put an end to my tactics by using Banishing Light on my Akroan Crusader. Eventually once, Elspeth came down I was done for.

Game 2: My dream team suffered at the hands of End Hostilities before Pearl Lake Ancient finished me off once and for all.

Loss 0-2

Ultimately, I went 2-3 and took 17th in the 25 person tournament. I was upset, but not surprised. My Mono-Red deck could push out explosive amounts of damage, but in such a life gain heavy format filled with high toughness creatures it just couldn’t win consistently. I’m very happy to have had the experience of playing in a PPTQ though and would definitely enter another tournament in the future. However, before doing so I need to make a more competitive standard deck (even if that means finally biting the bullet and acquiring the expensive land base needed for any deck in this format.

Though that will have to wait for another post. I entered a draft right after the tournament! I’ll describe what happened and my plans for the future in one more post to be uploaded before I finally go to sleep #_#

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