7/22/17 Top Deck Games Mox Ruby *T8*

I picked up Colorless Eldrazi when Walking Ballista was printed and Delver became unplayable. It was harder when Forgemaster was replaced with Ravager and Ballista was the nail in the coffin. I started with JacoDrazi and found I wanted more speed. Derek Gallacher T8'd Champs last year, adding Phyrexian Revokers. I added a Mana Crypt and then a Sol Ring and then a Black Lotus. Then Akash Naidu T8'd the Waterbury in April with a fully powered version, moving the Null Rods to the sideboard in exchange for Walking Ballistas. During this whole transformation, I 4-2'd four events with a T4 split in the middle, never seeming to push the deck to tier 1. With the increased presence of Paradoxical Outcome, I wanted Null Rod maindeck. Andy Markiton was helpful in making this build work. I decided on the following:

Threats - 21
4 Eldrazi Mimic
1 Endbringer
2 Endless One
2 Phyrexian Metamorph
4 Phyrexian Revoker
4 Reality Smasher
4 Thought-Knot Seer

Permission - 9
1 Chalice of the Void
4 Null Rod
4 Thorn of Amethyst

Mana - 30
1 Black Lotus
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Sol Ring
4 Ancient Tomb
4 Cavern of Souls
1 City of Traitors
4 Eldrazi Temple
1 Eye of Ugin
3 Mishra's Factory
1 Strip Mine
4 Wasteland

Sideboard - 15
1 Dismember
4 Grafdigger's Cage
2 Karakas
2 Mindbreak Trap
1 Pithing Needle
2 Spatial Contortion
2 Tormod's Crypt
1 Trinisphere

Roland Chang, Hank Zhong, David Ata and I drove in from NYC. This was a special event, being a luau series. Obviously, I was the only one from our car to wear a Hawaiian shirt.

Round 1: Zach Dobbin (Outcome Oath)
– I've known Zach for a couple of years and it's good to have him back in the game
Game 1 - I have a Chalice 1 FOW'd. Two Revokers tie up his mana
Game 2 - I get down a Thorn and am able to Mindbreak Trap his Oath, which he FOWs
Game 3 - I get a Thorn and then a Cavern'd Reality Smasher

Round 2: Nick DiJohn (Outcome Combo)
– Nick has been a prominent fixture of the Shops archetype, T8ing the majority of his events. It was quite a surprise seeing him cast Ancestral Recall after a couple years of seeing Spheres
Game 1 – I'm able to follow up a Thorn with a TKS and he stumbles on mana
Game 2 – Nick goes Lotus, Mentor, Mox, Top, Go, FOW your Dismember
Game 3 – I Revoker a Sol Ring, he follows up with a Mana Crypt, I Cavern Shapeshifter, Metamorph and lock down his Crypt and he's unable to come back

Round 3: Dan Sollazzo (BUG Delver)
--I do not believe Dan and I have competed before, I was excited to see BUG Delver in action
Game 1 – I open on Chalice 0 and Cavern out a quick Smasher while he cantrips
Game 2 – I Chalice 1, Waste his first land, have a Smasher Dismember'd and follow up with another

Round 4: Ryan Glackin (Shops)
–Ryan just came off a NYSE win with Workshops and is well versed in all archetypes, this won't be easy
Game 1 – I waste his first Shop, he has another. I get down a TKS while he has been chipping away with a Factory and a couple of guys. I add a Smasher and knock him down to lethal next turn. He can draw a Shapeshifter to stalemate or a Ravager for the win. Ravager it is
Game 2 – I keep a hand of: Wasteland, Lotus, TKS, Chalice, Null Rod and 2 non-mana. It worked
Game 3 – Neither of us apply much pressure while he drops Spheres. I decide to Metamorph a Mox so I can get down a Smasher the next turn. I have a Ruby and he has a Pearl. I choose to copy Ruby and he punishes me for the misplay by Revoking Ruby. I am able to comeback nonetheless and get down a Smasher for the win

Round 5: Chris Rowland

Round 6: Josh Potucek
Josh is a consistent ringer, pushing the metagame with unique brews. There is a possibility that a 4-1-1 won't make it so we ID. Roland leads the swiss standings in 1st place

Top 8: Will Magrann (Blitzkrieg Shops)
I end up 4th and have the play. Will persistently goes deep in large events wth Shops, most recently getting 3rd place at NYSE. He transitioned over to Blitzkrieg Shops, with Steel Overseers and Porcelain Legionnaires in the board.
Game 1 – I have an early TKS followed by a Null Rod and strip his Shop to lock it up
Game 2 – I Waste his Shop, Needle his Overseer, but am unable to contain his 2 Legionnaires
Game 3 – I mulligan to a hand that is all in on a Null Rod. I initially lock down his mana and Overseer, but he finds a Legionnaire that I just can't answer as my mana is constrained to get out a TKS/Smasher

Congratulations to Will who ended up taking the whole event down.

Roland, Hank and David and I went out for a nice steak dinner to celebrate my birthday afterwards. The food, service and company were excellent. I feel privileged to be a part of the NYC vintage community and a part of the overall North East scene. A big thanks to Keith for organizing the luau at Top Deck Games, Nick Coss for making everything work and all the competitors for an enjoyable event.

last edited by Dave Kaplan

Great report. Thanks, Dave!

Every time I see these reports, it makes me incredibly sad that Vintage died by me locally.

Congrats on the finish. It's always cool to see tournament reports.

I notice you said you guys all drove in from NYC.

Is there a place that holds local events still? And do you know where the "scene" is since neutral ground closed and stopped holding Sunday type one events?


I've just been back for about a year after an extended absence; are the Brothers Carp not holding events up in Milwaukee/Madison anymore?

@T1DarkRit Ben Carp stopped playing Magic about 2 years ago. Dan Carp went to the military and I haven't even seen him in 10 years.

Extreme Games went from 30 people to me showing up to an event and being the literally only person to show. So vintage no longer happens.

The chicago group plays old school. They can get 25 at the Milwaukee Market for old school, but we can't get 10 for vintage.

@MSolymossy Such a scathing indictment on the state of the format when 20+ would rather play a casual competitive vanity format than actual vintage. This must be especially frustrating when you know that all of these folks have the capacity to play vintage and choose not to. Best of luck bringing the scene back from the dead!

Thanks for the write up Dave. Congrats on a great finish!

@p3temangus The Chicago group didn't want to drive 45 minutes to play vintage because they had "Better things to do with their time".

(The same guys who travel 6 hours, or fly to sweden, to play Old School).

At the end of the day, it's their magic cards and they can do what they want, but yes. I truthfully hate, loathe, and despise old school because of it's impact on card prices, and it's impact on vintage locally.

Truthfully, I am extremely competitive and I know most of those people don't like ME for it, so I've been personally blamed for vintage dying here - but in the end it's really that they're mostly casual players who can't hang with top tier vintage players. SHRUG

ANYWAY back on topic. I may fly out to Philly to hang out with folks and show up randomly to an event in 2018.

@MSolymossy said in 7/22/17 Top Deck Games Mox Ruby *T8*:

Truthfully, I am extremely competitive and I know most of those people don't like ME for it, so I've been personally blamed for vintage dying here - but in the end it's really that they're mostly casual players who can't hang with top tier vintage players. SHRUG

That is a tragedy.

last edited by Aaron Patten

@walking-dude There are stores on Long Island and New Jersey that are not too far away (decent access by car) that hot regular Vintage tournaments. Unfortunately, none within NYC (the five boroughs) that organize it at least once a month, although I've spoken to a few store owners willing to try it.

The big issue is parking, as NYC doesn't have stores with access to free parking for large groups of players, and worrying about feeding the meter is a pain when you are in the middle of a round playing. With NYC being so packed and continuously building upward, it pushes parking availability out, which discourages players from out of the area (1+ hours away) from wanting to travel to play. That means lower tournament turnout, which leads to

  1. Lower prize Support (the main draw for players)
  2. Fewer rounds played (which lowers the justification for paying for parking)
  3. Fewer skilled players (the main draw for competitors, and a big way to grow a scene aside from loading upo on prize support)

The last tournament I organized was at Kings Games back in 2005 or 6 for a Mox Emerald, and at the time, it only drew 22 players. The main issue was having to pay 8-10 bucks for parking or risk a 3+ hour communte from outside NYC via public transportation to an area not in Manhattan. And Manhattan commercial rents at that time were skyrocketting to the point where if I had to host a monthly, stores wanted me to rent the space for the day to do it. It was unsustainable.

Kudos to Nick Detwiler in helping grow a scene in NY. I couldn't.

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