Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Not the Week of Nightmares

So, with Josh and Matt posting about everything, I feel like I should add something. I'll keep it short though, since this is so after-the-fact.

I arrived late Wednesday night (about 11pm, after 11 hours of driving, and 2 of resting/, the plan had originally been to leave home Tuesday evening, stop halfway to Indianapolis, and then drive the second half on Wednesday morning, arriving in time for draft or whatever was going on in the evening. Unfortunately, I was kept late by work on Tuesday night, so I basically missed out on all the WoN events, except for the creation of Duffin Draft. Which was the best part, I guess.

Note to self: don't try to drive 600 miles in one day on your own in the future. At least bring a friend.

Thursday, as Josh has pointed out, I won the sanctioned draft tournament. I didn't destroy the deck, because I want to go through it and see why it worked. I mean, aside from the fact that it was a draft event. It didn't suck as much as I thought it did. We drafted 4x Camarilla, 2x Anarchs, 2x Gehenna, and 2x KMW. I got passed a lot of Anarchs stuff, and I hung onto it. It seemed like a lot of people were holding out for the "power" stuff in Camarilla, and weren't really playing with the Anarch cards, which seemed like a mistake to me. I ended up with what looked like a pile of poop, but man, those Anarchs cards are strong.

I somehow made it to the final, where I was seated between Ben Peal (playing I don't know what...he got hammered a lot early on and spent about half an hour hanging onto 1 pool) and Dave Setty, who got out Enkidu right away. I spent most of the game looking innocuous and not bleeding Dave, who focused all of his efforts on trashing his prey. Enkidu never rushed me, which was a good thing...I didn't have a lot of combat defense. I think I bled Dave for about 3 points until the endgame. He eventually got his prey (Stephan Lavrut) down really low, and I realized I was going to have to do something, or I'd never oust Dave. As his Discard, Dave played Dragonbound (!!!! in draft?!?!!) and that, with some diablerizing thinking on Stephan's part, got Stephan down to 1 pool (though Dave had thought it would kill him). Dave used a Special Report to attempt to block one of Stephan's actions, meaning that I only had to worry about Wake/Guard Dogs/etc. I had an Anarch Revolt that had been sitting in my hand for a couple of turns, but it would instantly kill Ben, and I hadn't wanted to warn him, telegraphing my play to the other people at the table. Additionally, at this point, Dave had 1 more pool than I could do to him by bleeding with all my minions and the AR. During his turn, Ben put down the 4th Gehenna card on the table, making Nightmare Upon Nightmares affect 2 of my minions. This turned out to actually be what I needed. I got rid of 2 cards, and drew into a Smash & Grab, which I could use at dem for +1 bleed. I played the AR, bled for 4, and then let the AR kill Dave. Then it killed Stephan. Then Josh F took his turn, then Ben died, then it was down to the two of us, but I had a lot more pool, and stronger minions, so I got greedy and went for 4 VPs. Which I got. Woo.

Friday, I played the usual Tremere group 1-2 bruise & bleed. I sucked a lot at the first table, because my predator was the highly effective Legacy of Pander thing played by Brian Moritz. At the 2nd table, I got screwed by my predator being weenie DEM, crippling me, and then getting ousted by his weenie OBF predator. I lasted a few more turns, but couldn't hold out against the weenie OBF. Finding some equipment would have helped. Also not immediately getting crippled would have been good. So, going into the 3rd round, I only had .5 VPs, and I was getting kind of excited about playing in the draft tournament the next day. Unfortunately for that plan, I actually did well in the 3rd round, getting a table win with 3 VPs. There were 2 interesting things about that game:

1) my prey was playing the best Mata Hari deck I've seen yet.
2) Astrid Thomas' special came in useful. Yes. Astrid Thomas. Go go 1994 tech!

me -> Darcy playing Mata Hari -> Ethan playing Tzi vote -> Albert playing 2/3 Tremere with Carna -> Carol playing Anson/Spiridonas (key player)

I had 4 pool on Astrid, and was about to take 3 damage from a KRC that Carol played. I convinced Ethan that if he failed the vote, I would bring out a minion that would provide us with vote control between the two of us. Ethan asked if it was Etrius, to which I responded, "no, but you'll like it when you see it." Ethan looked puzzled, mentioned that we'd need a 4 vote swing, but failed the vote anyway. On my turn, I brought out Astrid, swinging Carna and Spiridonas. Heh. Good times. Eventually, Ethan got ousted due to a well played Sensory Dep, Albert bounced a lot of bleeds into Carol and then ousted her, and then I won the 3-player, after Albert bleedzooka-ed into me which was Deflected to my tapped-out prey. I finished Darcy and Albert on the following turn. Barely.

2nd day of the qualifier, I played a Sascha Vykos deck that Josh and Matt advised me on the night before, and the morning of. I didn't do so well, seeing as how I had never played the deck before. I think it's a good deck though, and I just need to figure out how to play it better.

Uh. That's it, I guess. Longer than I expected.


Blogger Josh Duffin said...

In the sanctioned draft finals, Josh Feuerstein was below hand size due to having emptied his library when you got to him, which probably helped in winning the endgame. And explains why he was pretty unable to oust Ben on 1 pool, too. :-)

5:11 PM  
Blogger Xian said...

Ah, that could definitely explain things. I felt really out-of-the-loop on the end of the table, what with not wanting to attract attention myself, it being kind of loud in the Ram, and not wanting to attract attention to myself. Heh.

4:35 PM  
Blogger Matt said...

I probably would've gotten greedy and tried to save Ben for myself, but really an endgame situation against a guy with no deck is pretty sweet, especially when all you need to do is not get ousted and you win the tournament. Well done.

3:38 PM  

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