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This Friday at approximately 11:00 pm on Gatherling.com we are going to continue our Top8 Classic Pauper Event. This will be the forth event in the series for this first season. This is a single elimination classic pauper event. Anyone here on mtgvault.com that would like to play in this event is invited! So please come and join us. Feel free to talk to me on MTGO if you would like more information about how this all works. My MTGO name is also Dabil. Classic Pauper is the Classic format where only Commons are legal. Gatherling.com is a Player Run Event (PRE) site that uses Magic: The Gathering Online (MTGO) to play the matches. So anyone anywhere in the world can play in these events as long as you have an MTGO account. You can download Wizard's MTGO software and get an account by going here:www.mtgonline.comSo this is the deck I am planning on playing this Friday. I just built it and started working with it this past Monday. I am going to create some videos to showcase this deck. Here is the deck tech showcasing the cards and strategy of the deck:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zthIXkZrciUHere are some practice videos so you can get an idea how the deck works:Practice match 1 vs White Weenie:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0n3k16pSE0kPractice match 2 vs Mono Blue Mill:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVY5Aj58ABgPractice match 3 vs Tempo Delverhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bKmasigbYt4If you are interested in watching this deck develop, please follow me and check back. I am going to record the matches I play this Friday with this deck so you can see exactly how I win or lose this event. If you want to get a good look at the current MTGO Pauper Daily Meta, here is a link to a bot I created that automatically compiles all the deck lists and analyses the decks that go 4-0 or 3-1. You see me in the decktech video using and talking about his web app. This is what I use in large part to help me understand the Classic Pauper metagame and build decks to compete in tournaments. http://pauperkrew.com/phpbb/averages.php
This is a Selesnya Beats: Hexproof Aura deck. The idea is to play creatures that your opponents cannot target to remove, and then drop aura/enchantments on them to build really big creatures. Then you simply run them over. Here is the Deck Tech video for this deck list:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zthIXkZrciUThis archetype is currently the 8th most successful deck in the MTGO Pauper Daily events for the month of January 2013. There have been 23 decks that have gone 4-0 or 3-1 in the Pauper Dailies. The list I am presenting here is an averaged deck list that I created using an app I made called DAV Bot (Daily Average Bot). What DAV Bot does is comb the MTGO Pauper Daily event results... found here: http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Digital/MagicOnline.aspx?x=mtg/digital/magiconline/whatshappening ...and copies all decks that go 4-0 or 3-1 in those events to a database. It then organizes all the decks into like groups. In order for two decks to be considered alike, DAV Bot compares them, and if they have at least 50 cards the same between the maindeck and sideboard, then it groups those decks together. Finally it averages all the decks in those groups to create a snap shot of each archetype that combines all the collective wisdom of those successful decks. You can then use those averaged lists to understand the metagame, create your own version of each archetype, or just figure out ways to beat them. It is an invaluable tool for staying on top of the metagame. Here is the link to DAV Bot: http://pauperkrew.com/phpbb/averages.phpDAV Bot has been running for almost 2 years now collecting data. So you can view the metagame and see the average deck lists for any week or month in the last 2 years. It is great for finding new fun decks to play.
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Please feel free to follow along with the development of this deck list. I appreciate all constructive ideas that you may have for how I can improve this deck list. The current issue I am having with this deck is with the mana base. If you watch the practice videos you will see that I keep loosing games in the matches due to not getting the white mana I need. I am wondering if I shouldn't increase the Selesnya Guildgate to 3 or 4. Or add in plains with Terramorphic Expanse or Evolving Wilds. The Selesnya Guildgate would slow me down a turn each time I played one since it comes into play tapped. The Terramophic Expanse or Evolving Woods also would slow me down a turn since the basic land you pull comes into play tapped as well. But they also have the added benefit of thinning out your library by removing additional lands, so that it becomes more likely to draw your power spells instead of lands.I do need to be careful how many non-forest lands I play since both Utopia Sprawl and Land Grant both need forests. But they only make up 5 cards in the deck, so maybe a wide consideration isn't necessary. If you have an opinion feel free to jump in!
I just uploaded new video's for this deck to youtube. I finally got the deck tech video uploaded, but I am going to apologize for the ugliness of the video. Seems the compression in the video made some really funky artifacts. The shading on Gatherling for example caused some issues. But despite the annoyance the video is there and watchable. Also I uploaded practice match 3 vs Tempo Delver, which is the most popular deck in Classic Pauper right now, and has been for some time. Well enjoy, and again, feel free to leave comments.
Okay so I spent some time today tuning this deck. I just really was unhappy with how it was performing. It seemed like if I didn't get lucky enough to get the right lands and get the land enchantments, I just couldn't function. So I needed to address that. Also I wanted to provide some extra protection for the Aura Gnarlid since he is the only creature in the deck without Hexproof. And finally I wanted to add additional draw to get me to my combo's a little faster. Here are the changes I made:Out:1x Manamorphose1x Land Grant1x Lush Growth1x Fists Of Ironwood6x Forest1x Khalni GardenIn: 3x Snake Umbra1x Lay of the Land4x Evolving Wilds2x Plains1x Selesnya GuildgateOkay so as you can see I removed the 1x cards and put in x Snake Umbra. There is a place and time to do 1x card lists like this, but this deck isn't it. Here are the reasons I would do a bunch of 1x cards like this:1) If you have some way of tutoring to get the exact card you need when you need it, then it makes sense to use a lot of 1 of cards. 2) If you want to try to mask your overall stragegy in some way by including a lot of 1x cards, this can add "card confusion". As it becomes more difficult for your opponent to decide when sideboarding, what cards in your deck are core cards and advance the overall strategy, and what ones are just tech. I think for this deck I prefer a more solid list of cards that advance the overall strategy of the deck. Snake Umbra does this. It provides protection for the Aura Gnarlid and other creatures, as if they are destroyed, instead you just remove the umbra. And if the creature does damage to an opponent, you get to draw a card. This is a good addition to the deck list. I have a little concern about adding another 3 converted mana cost card while removing 1's and 2's though. That is why I am also adding Lay of the Land. This will help by adding an additional land drop. I almost want to include more of it, but I am not sure what I would take out. Finally I was really struggling every match to get white mana, so much that getting white mana in time actually was determining if I would win or lose, and a number of times I got stranded with Armadillo Cloak in hand instead of being able to play it. So I added an extra guildgate, 2x plains, and 4x Evolving Wilds. Evolving Wilds will allow me to fetch the exact land I would need, and also pull additional lands from the deck to make drawing power cards more likely. Certainly a great addition. So how did it do during the next practice session? Practice Match 4: Selesnya Beatz vs RDW:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWnTn0rAQq8I will add the additional practice matches when I get a chance. But I am very pleased with how the deck is performing now that I have tuned it some. I was feeling pretty unprepared for tomorrow nights tournament with this deck, as it just didn't feel like it was flowing right. But now I am feeling much better about it.
Okay the January tournament (Top8 Pauper Classic 1.04) came and went. What happened? I got matched up against White Weenie in round 1, and got shelled immediately. The problem was that my opponent had Standard Bearer in his maindeck!Game 1):I got blown out as, he played the Standard Bearer turn 2, before I was able to drop any enchantments. The problem here was that now I had to target the Standard Bearer for my enchantments instead of my own creatures. Sp I wasn't able to get anything going, and pretty much had to just sit there and watch him take me out. Game 2: I side in 3x Hornet Sting and 3xJourney To Nowhere, taking out a the Lay of the Land, 2x Abundant Growth, and 3x Snake Umbra. I draw into my Standard Bearer hate with a Journey to Nowhere in hand, and adequate lands. So I keep and drop a Slippery bogle turn 1. My turn 2 I continue dropping land to develop, and he again, drops a turn 2 Standard Bearer. No problem though as I have the Journey in hand, but I also draw a Hornet Sting! So I remove the Standard Bearer and am left with a decision, do I start playing creature echantments or Aura Gnarlid? I decide on the Ara Gnarlid since he will give me the greatest potential to win quickly. I am able to make this decision because I still have a Journey to Nowhere in hand, and can again remove a Standard Bearer should my opponent drop one. If not for the Journey in hand, I for sure would have played the Ancestral Mask in hand instead of the Gnarlid. Classic example of the cards in hand influencing play. My opponent drops a flyer, and I play the Mask next turn and run him over. Game 3:I like my still for turn 3 and so I leave it. Game 3 my opponent gets a very fast draw and starts dropping creatures and attacking. He gets 2x Icatian Javelineers, a Loyal Cathar, and a Razor Golem in play before I can really get my first viable creatures online. He has me at 8 life, while I get a Slippery Bogle with Rancor, and an Aura Gnarlid in play. Not a great defensive position for me and my opponent subsuquently rolls over me. Blah....I have this on video and will put it up on line when I get a chance. So being that Top8 Pauper Classic is a Single Elimination event, that was the end of my night. So I spent the rest of my night tuning it for next time (Which will be Friday, January 25ths Top8 Pauper Classic 1.05). I have that deck list here: http://www.mtgvault.com/dabil/decks/classic-pauper-selesnya-beatz/I still feel like this list has potential. I like the mana base way more now, as at least I am getting the land and colors I need to make the deck work. I obviously need to maindeck some creature control, since White Weenie is moving Standard Bearer into its maindeck. And it really shouldn't surprise anyone that WW is doing that, since it is a great card against at least 3 of the Top 10 most popular deck lists right now. And those are:1) Infect2) Stompy3) Selesnya BeatzSo I will detail my changes in my next post, which is the link above. Cya there!