The Magic: the Gathering team is back again for another Mythic Championship report. This time, the six members of the team traveled to London to compete for prizes and fame. Read on to see how each person fared!
My trip overseas was a bit of a rollercoaster. I started with a red-green draft deck packed to the brim with rares and planeswalkers and thought I could finally get my first 3-0 of the format on my 9th try. I managed to defeat two of my opponents, but lost to a unique green-white ramp deck from Thomas Enevoldsen. Then it was time for constructed where I had registered Redrazi aka CRABLADS (see the sideboard).
4 Eldrazi Mimic
4 Eldrazi Obligator
4 Eternal Scourge
4 Thought-Knot Seer
4 Reality Smasher
4 Serum Powder
4 Simian Spirit Guide
4 Chalice of the Void
2 Chandra, Torch of Defiance
4 Eldrazi Temple
4 Ramunap Ruins
4 Sulfurous Springs
2 Scavenger Grounds
2 Gemstone Caverns
1 Ghost Quarter
1 Chandra, Torch of Defiance
2 Rending Volley
2 Blood Moon
4 Leyline of the Void
1 Anger of the Gods
1 Damping Sphere
Tim played the same deck and it sure was a blast for me. Getting to cast Eternal Scourge after you exiled it to Serum Powder or Scavenger Grounds was delicious value. You can even make your opponent take 2 with Chandra if you flip it, then cast it anyway. Eldrazi Obligator always leads to fun gameplay as well, turning races in your favor and permanently eating up Phantasmal Image, Arcbound Ravager, Walking Ballista, and Death’s Shadow. I almost won a preboard game where I took 6 mulligans, three with Serum Powder and three without. The London mulligan and open decklists rule supercharged the deck. I won all five Modern matches on the first day and felt like I was in a good spot to finally get my first top 8.
On the second day, I was in a freakishly strong draft pod with Matt Sperling, Alexander Hayne, Brian Braun-Duin, Thien Nguyen, Oliver Tiu, Matt Sikkinik Johnson, and Patrick Tierney. The packs were difficult to navigate but I ended up on a blue-red deck headlined by Ral and two copies of Role Reversal. All three matches ended up down to the wire. I made a tough judgment call against Alexander Hayne and it narrowly backfired. Against Matt, I got to do EIGHT Totally Lost by copying all four I had in my deck postboard with Ral. The wild thing is that I needed all eight because Matt was brutally curving out on me! Against Patrick, facing down an overwhelming board and with life points quickly dropping, I played Ral, kept an Aven Eternal on top with scry, and performed a chump block. On the next turn, I played the Eternal, minused Ral, and used Role Reversal to exchange a basic land for my opponent’s 9/9 Awakening of Vitu-Ghazi land, and exchange my 1/1 Army for my opponent’s 2/3 deathtouch lifelink, all while still having a 2/2 flyer to block a 2/1 flyer. I ended up just narrowly winning the race.
At 9-2, I just needed another strong showing from my Redrazi deck. I won the first against Noah Walker’s Grixis Death’s Shadow, then faced Chih-Cheng Yeh’s Dredge in the feature match, which produced this gem:
Just like that, I was sitting at 11-2, locked Platinum, and would effectively be playing two win-and-in matches. Unfortunately, I wasn’t joking when I said the tournament was a rollercoaster. In round 14 I faced Yuuya Watanabe’s Tron and got dispatched in two games. Then, with one more shot, I lost to Chris Kvartek’s Humans. I felt awful at this point, but tried to keep it together and utterly demolished Izzet Phoenix in the last round for a 10th place 12-4 finish. I thought there was a small, non-zero chance a 12-4 could make top 8 like in Atlanta. That turned out to be incorrect at face value, but then Yuuya got disqualified. Knowing I had to face him while he had marked cards and losing to him, contributing to me missing top 8, left me feeling lots of weird emotions.
I had a week after the tournament to do sightseeing in a variety of places I had never been, and that helped me feel a lot better. I went to Amsterdam, Prague, and then Paris. There was a lot of eating balanced out with a lot of walking. There’s something cathartic about post-tournament meals, probably because we feel mentally and physically drained from concentrating all day. Looking forward to another shot at my first top 8 next time in Barcelona.
Canals in Amsterdam
Arc de Triomphe in Paris
Despite testing a lot with the new mulligan rule, I was unable to crack the code and settled on what I thought would be a reasonable choice for the tournament. Tron benefits a lot from the London mulligan as it can operate well on 4 or 5 cards as long as it has seven mana on turn three. I was a little worried about playing what many thought was the best deck, but it's at least an archetype I have a lot of experience with, and that can go a long way in diverse format like Modern.
Unfortunately, I started off poorly and ended up facing decks like Burn and Storm that were somewhat off the radar but have a good Tron matchup. I played out the day for fun, but was effectively eliminated in Round 6 after losing a close match in extra turns to UW Control. I wish I could have done better as our team fell just short of the Top 8 in the Team Series, but that's just how it goes sometimes.
Alleyway adventures in London
I arrived in London about a week before the Mythic Championship with the goal to test a lot of draft with my team. I wasn’t doing very well in practice draft but I was hoping that the testing would pay off. I was already locked in on Humans for Modern because it performed the best for me and was good with the open decklists because of Meddling Mage. In draft, my testing didn’t really pay off unfortunately. I drafted two decks that were very reliant on Dreadhorde Arcanist and I didn’t draw it enough. Perhaps that was a mistake. I ended with a 2-4 record. Not what I had hoped for.
Modern didn’t go as badly. I was happy with my deck choice but ended up only going 5-5. Overall, my record was only 7-9. The London mulligan rule plus the open decklists made it one of the most interesting and fun Mythic Championships I have played in.
The first Mythic Championship Prerelease was a pretty wild ride for me. The Limited portion of the event would be the first time physical cards would be readily available, so I needed to figure out a way to practice without them. I ended up creating playtest cards for the whole set, and ran mock drafts with some of my close friends. Honestly, even though it was logistically annoying, the experience of just playing a prerelease with a bunch of my good friends was really awesome. We all committed tons of errors, didn't know what any of the cards did, but just had a blast playing Magic with each other. It was a big breath of fresh air compared to just grinding away drafts on Magic Online.
The Constructed portion of the event was less cool, and I could not find any deck I liked. Eventually, I just gave up and decided to play the deck I was most familiar with: Hardened Scales. It helped that my friends thought it it was a fine choice, which I was pretty unused to as usually people complain nonstop about Hardened Scales being an underpowered or bad deck. So when they said it was "fine", I took that to mean it was great. I ended up a disappointing 9-7 overall, but I had a good time in London (I saw the musical Wicked for the first time!), and I'm looking forward to the next MC!
Mythic Championship London was a weird experience for me. Testing Modern with a new mulligan rule and open decklists was quite the challenge considering the combination of these factors were not available online. Then testing draft was straight up impossible since I did not have the time or the amount of people required to print the entire set and recreate a draft environment.
I ended up just theorizing on the format and creating sample decks for each color pair. That helped a bit, as at least I knew what all the cards did and had somewhat of an idea on how to draft each deck. Unfortunately that was only good enough for a 3-3 draft record at the MC. Then my Modern deck choice lined up poorly for the pairings I got, I did not face Phoenix or Tron which was the reason I played Titan Breach.
Everything about Mythic Championship London went much better than I expected, except for the tournament itself! Several weeks before the event I had already found a Modern deck I enjoyed playing and had success with in Red Eldrazi. Running a deck with cards like Eldrazi Temple, Chalice of the Void, and Serum Powder maximized both the London mulligan rule and the open decklist policy. Since I am primarily a Limited player and usually Standard is a mystery to me, I felt really good about having the better part of three weeks to familiarize myself with the deck and Modern as a format. Unfortunately a combination of bad matchups and mulliganing perhaps TOO much led me to a poor constructed record and dropping from the event mid-way though day 2 so I could go out and enjoy London proper.
My Limited record was a rather disappointing 3-3. I was fortunately enough to have access to a War of the Spark proxy draft cube, so going into the MC I had eight drafts under my belt. I lost in the finals of my first pod with what I thought was a solid RG aggressive deck. My day 2 pod started with me opening a foil Liliana, Dreadhorde General, but I made the mistake of force drafting around her and ended up with a GB midrange deck that had some nice bombs as well as some glaring holes it in and went 1-2.
The next tabletop Mythic Championship is at the end of July in Barcelona. If we do well enough, we could win prizes or make the final playoff. We have more Magic content in the pipeline for the next two weeks, so keep an eye out!