As the days get colder and shorter here in good old Syracuse, NY my normal person activates like swimming and BBQs taper off and my nerd hobbies like webcam Magic are really heating up. Drinking and gummy intake stays roughly flat.
Just the basics.
The big plus in the seasonal change is I’ll have something to blog about and an outlet for my repetitive jokes. Let’s start with the Premodern Fall Brawl, hosted by the Prince of Premodern himself Michael J. Heup. Let me get this out of the way in case you’re reading this looking for some sweet tech: my record was 2-5. That said, every match loss went to 3 games and for those of you who are not premodern aficionados, there are almost no free wins like there are in Old School. Even the 1-3 batch 2 bracket has solid players on real decks. With 5 or so tier 1 decks and a massive tier 2 meta there’s not much room for or need to purely fuck around.
I decided to play Pit Rack, an archetype I hadn’t previously played, but I assumed to be firmly in the middle of of the tier 2 space. My deck picks for 8 round tournaments like these Brawls or Old School Derbies have 2 criteria: they must be reasonably competitive and fun to play. I had a blast getting my ass kicked over the course of the tournament, so the fun factor was definitely not an issue, but was it competitive? I think so. More on the matchups and results in a minute.
There seem to be 2ish ways to build Pit Rack: a little more aggro with a larger creature base or a little less aggro relying on removal spells in the margins. I went with the former because I generally would rather swing for 2 than sit around and hope my answers match up with their threats. After consulting a bunch with Gabe “The Other” Farkas on the build based on his experience and success with the deck, particularly the more aggressive version, I landed here.
This is very close to The Other Farkas’ build for the main deck. The sideboard is substantially different based on my huge boner for Planar Void. As I continue to tune the deck, the main problem is it can sometimes struggle with closing out games once we’re both hellbent. A shortcoming The Other Farkas warning me about. One answer to this is to add the 4th Scroll to the main going forward, increasing the likelihood of shocking something once everyone’s cards are in the graveyard. I wish there were viable black man lands… if only Spawning Pool was a 2/2! This is going to sound crazy, but I also think Wasteland is garbage in the current meta and especially in this deck. The deck already eats Elves alive and it has enough evasion to barge past The Rock’s man lands so in practice the only thing Wasteland really did was fuck the mana up. I cut them in my post-Brawl tuning, which also allows you to run 1 fewer land overall. I like the sideboard a lot minus the 2 Haunting Echoes. I swear it’s the last time I ever sleeve it up. Please slap me if you see it in anything I play going forward.
I didn’t get my last match completed in batch 2, so of my 7 match sample size here’s what happened. My match notes are real sketchy, but for those of you who care about what actually happened this is the best I can offer you.
Devourer Combo – Jeff Ecklund 1-2
Game 1 I do my thing and he’s hellbent with an Alter on the board and a 2 turn clock. Rips the Tinker for the win. Game 2 he didn’t land a card. Game 3 I mulled to 4 after drawing 0 lands in my first 2 7’s.
Elves – Michael Arnold 2-0
Game 1 he mulls to 5, I ritual out a Spitter. Game 2 he mulls to 6. I draw 3 Funeral Charm and he can’t catch up from that. The 4th Charm as on top when we scooped it all up :-).
Lands 1-2 Matthew Ranson
I feel like I’m favored here, but I lost. I don’t really remember what happened other than this is the one match I could have really used a Wastleland to blast through a Glacial Chasm for the win and I never saw one.
Parfait 1-2 Raphael Caron
We’re 1-1 and game 3 on the play he drops Mox Diamond, Land Tax and Zuran Orb Turn 1. I definitely cannot beat that and scoop on the spot.
Batch 2: 1-3 Bracket
Sligh – Nathan Shue 1-2
He cast Ball Lightning and whatnot.
Zombie Infestation – Rob Hackney 2-1
Planar Void doing work!!!
Mike Smith – Can’t Remember 1-2
We had a really nice conversation about Resident Evil 4 for Game Cube.
Gabe Farkas for tuning the deck to a point where the matches were fun and competitive, even if I got my face smashed.
Larger Than Life (LGS in Clay, NY) for having 2 Cursed Totems in stock! Please support your LGS!
Jeff Ecklund for hooking me up with a very special consolation prize.
Wasteland & Haunting Echoes
NY State for making Lemke and I get our gummies in MA.