Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Day two: And it's tournament time

So we had our first official tournament today, it got ten players (me, Matt Morgan, Jon Sushinsky, Oscar Garza, L. Scott Johnson, Ethan Burrow, Devin Villegas, Albert Chang, John Pattie, Ben Peal), and was three rounds plus final, multi-deck and multi-judge rules were used.

I played an 80-card version of Snapcase's Rock Cat deck for the first round (80 instead of 90 cause I only could come up with 8 Rock Cats instead of 10 and also I didn't have enough Soul of the Earth, although the latter was easily remedied as it turned out, thanks Xian!) and promptly sat between two intercept decks that totally shut me down - Ben with small-vamp Thaumaturgy permanents (lots of Magic of the Smith) on my left, Scott with Tzimisce and a bunch of small Auspex guys (all four of his non-AUS ANI vamps allegedly) on my right. It was a slow and painful death.

Second round I figured I'd try to play something not as sucky and played my Obt/Dom vote and bleed deck (much like everyone else's, really, the only hot new tech I think was Disengage and that was only hot, like, once in this game). My predator was John Pattie with Thelerity and Lucas Halton and Anastaz di Zagreb and Blythe, prey was Scott with a Black Hand deck with Shakar and Soldat, Henry Taylor (don't think he got Blooded this game but maybe he did), and later Jalan-Aajav, grandprey was Oscar with Dem/Aus/Obf stealth-vote (and a little bleed), great-grandprey was Ben with Assamite probably vote-bleed but his Amaravati got smacked early and didn't have much blood to make votes with, and he didn't draw Alamut till pretty late. I got Francisco D.d.P., Ambrosio L.M., and pretty late, Gratiano. Oh, and then really late, Henri Lavenant. Things looked good for me for a while as I bled a bunch and voted some, and annoyed Oscar by voting against his stuff when he stopped putting damage on Scott on account of Scott being so low. Then they looked worse when John kept rushing my guys and Thefting a bunch, and bleeding some, and me not gaining much pool. Then I Giant's Blooded and Minion Tapped on consecutive turns, and then managed to oust both Oscar and Ben in like one turn (gaining something like 19 in that turn - it must have been the same turn as the Minion Tap?), and that's when I bought Henri. John put up a pretty good fight but couldn't quite handle the four guys.

Third round I played a newish Majesty-based bleed/vote deck, also with Disengage as the hot new tech (17 Majesties, 7 Disengage, 4 Catatonic Fear I think?). Oscar was my prey with a Ravnos Tumnimosish deck, Devin was cross-table with Nos anti fight/bleed/block things, Scott was my predator with Kiasyd toolboxiness. Nobody really had an answer to Majesty in the first place, or any titles except Gratiano after I had already Seized some Praxis and had three Princes, so I kind of ran all over everybody and killed them. A lot. With Erciyes Fragments. And stealing Devin's Ox with From a Sinking Ship. It was mean.

In the finals I was top seed, so naturally I sat down in the really bad place in front of Ethan, who was playing Synesios+Setites stealth-vote/bleed. Who knew? I didn't know. I was playing Colin's new Bouncin' Baali... with Dominate?! (group 3+4) deck... got Maureen and Suzanne and that was it for a really really long time on account of Ethan zapping me for about 10 at stealth in a time period where I could only Deflect once. Matt was my prey, playing his Palla Grande/Undue Influence deck, Devin was his prey, playing a slightly-modified version of the round-3 Nos anti deck, and Ben was my great-grand-prey, with I think an unmodified version of the round-1 weenie Thaumaturgy intercept/fight permanents/Magic/Theft deck. So I mentioned the Ethan zapping for 10, then I miraculously survived for like three solid turns on the strength of Wake + Sense the Sin for 1 intercept (and the occasional Deflection) and Majesty - somehow Ethan didn't manage to oust me at more than 1 stealth for a really long time. Meanwhile I got lucky on a Deflection and two Legals and a Sense the Sin to oust Matt, then Devin who Matt had down to about two pool, and I looked kind of reasonably alive for a while, except that Ben's wall was impenetrable. Ethan continued to not be able to oust me, as Ben now blocked pretty much all his votes, and I blocked or Deflected his bleeds of more than 1. Ben wore Ethan down and ousted him, then wore me down and ousted me too (the latter not taking long). Victory Ben, second place me. Ah well. (Third Ethan, fourth Matt, fifth Devin, for you completists.)

That's all for me for tonight, it was a longish account, no? We played a few more pickup games afterwards and one before the tournament, but this is long enough already, and it's late. Bye for now!


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