I got a pretty neat game in on Sunday, where everyone got to twirl their moustaches to a degree. It's an interesting case of dynamic flow through the game, and merits documenting despite some similarities to prior written up scenarios.
I kept what I felt was a relatively innocuous hand with Top
and Rampant Hawk
, but I then skilfully ripped a Sol Ring
off the top, making me the initial big bad. I didn't really have any interesting follow-up plays though, so I just poked people a couple of times with the Hawk before that stopped yielding returns. I was hitting consistent land drops and shuffles thanks to a Crucible
, my enchantments were few but quite impactful - Righteous Aura
, Greater Auramancy
and a Kaya's Ghostform
on the Daxos. Got Trap Rock
for some more mana, but nothing that relevant was showing up, in the big mana department or haymaking or otherwise. Still, my mini-fort was oddly impervious, and stopped me from being interacted by the rest of the table. Rosheen
got a crazy mana setup going on with Nyxbloom Ancient
, and the rest of the guys started fearing a fireball. Not my problem thanks to Righteous Aura
landed a Gruul Ragebeast
, and once the obsolete Rampant Hawk fell to it there were no other targets to consume due to Greater Auramancy
. Both of those died in pretty short order, by the way, neither by my hand. It was almost like a three-man game with me off on the sidelines, not interacted with, but also not offering much meaningful stuff to the table. Kept fetching, shuffling, looking for something.
Eventually I located Cathars' Crusade
. The remnant of Rosheen's big mana, a Keeper of Progenitus
, helped me immediately churn out five bodies, taking me up to 60+ spirit power. It didn't hurt either that I got True Conviction
in my next batch of cards. I suddenly had a respectable strike force, and it was time to figure out what I was to do with it:
- Marchesa suddenly became far and away the biggest threat. A symbolic modular value loop started growing in size, with a Clone Shell digging through the deck and bringing new friends to the party. Triskelion already came out, there's a Mike in there somewhere, no amount of life will save me if that happens.
- Rosheen wasn't quite the same since the Nyxbloom got itself popped, especially as all the Nyxbloom did was power out a gigantic non-evasive hydra that did not scare me at all. Plus it was actively beneficial for me to keep him around due to the Keeper.
- Intet started having various value pieces come together, drawing some cards, making some bodies, but the board wasn't super wide and I could handle any crackback via spirits.
Judging off pure threat level, and the fact there wasn't enough modular to keep the entire setup afloat, I blasted the board into the Marchesa. Due to the presence of a sacrifice outlet, I got to deal no damage and gain no life by extension, which made the swing feel like a bit of a punt. However, watching him scramble with blocks and keeping select things around via modular reminded me that I was thinning the board for a reason. Next turn stuff would probably connect, while the slightly beat up board hopefully meant less value accrued in the meantime. Alas, things went south pretty fast - upon untapping, Marchesa landed Arcbound Crusher
and Sly Requisitioner
. The chump army exploded, while also farming the Crusher, who could then theoretically transfer the counters to the Triskelion
and explode... someone? Probably me, but maybe the Intet would actually seem threatening to the Marchesa because of the Thunderfoot Baloth
resulting in a reasonably fat tramply board? Another hairpin turn happened after the next untap, as Rosheen found a Decimate
. Relevant targets - my Greater Auramancy
and the Marchesa's sac outlet. This stunted the value loop and the chump growth, but the board was still wide enough for me to not be able to get through. Production would resume promptly, as at some point the Clone Shell
found Sphinx Summoner
, who found Arcbound Crusher
to hand. Intet followed up on the punch and popped in Terastodon
. Relevant targets - Righteous Aura
and True Conviction
. My fort! At least my board was still fat as hell, but at this point there was one goal and one goal only - find an asymmetric wipe and blast out the two main threats. Possibly everyone, if enough fatness was around.
Untap, Top fish, fail to find. Crucible a fetch, rip it, Top fish, fail to find. The initial Top fish found Sword of Rampant Growth
, so that comes out for another reset and a marginal board thin over on Intet's side. Third Top fish... finds a Skybind
. Pretty decent for keeping myself alive for the time being. I have Heliod's Mattress Emporium
around, and the aforementioned Trap Rock, so I consider shoving Greater Auramancy
back on top and doing a Trap Rock draw to get them both in hand. I am one mana short of being able to play them thereafter. As such, I just tap the Top and go for Skybind by itself. At this point, the table scoops. Not due to being overwhelmed by the sheer force of the Skybind, but due to wanting to get food and the game visibly complicating itself. We deliberate the game state further as we drive up to Mickey Dee's. My main angle with the Skybind is to keep Marchesa off lethal Triskelion
on me, which would have likely bought me enough time to turn this around. I'd suddenly feel more confident in blasting out Intet and Rosheen, as my odds in the 1v1 seemed pretty nice. Thing is, Intet had a counter, and Skybind was not going to happen. This would start some pretty decisive dominos falling - the presence of Heliod's Mattress Emporium
meant that the Skybind was coming back, and Marchesa was very incentivised to expend a whole bunch of resources on killing me. This would take up some amount of focus, allowing Intet to pounce with the Summary Dismissal
he was sitting on to stuff Marchesa's value loop once I was out of the equation, making him the likely victor of the game were it to play the remaining few turns out.
Oh, also, as it turns out, the Marchesa took the Mike out of the deck at some point. So me factoring in the infinite was incorrect