Do I even remember how to do this? An old fashioned tournament report from an actual physical tournament with actual people in the room around me – is it even possible? It has been way –WAY- too long, but it finally happened again in the last weekend of June 2021.
And let me just start out by saying this: hot damn! I mean Fire Elemental-hot damn! It was an absolute blast.
The tournament in question was the latest in the grandest and most professional Danish Tournament series, the DOS (Danish Old School). This was DOS6, and it was – as always – arranged by the great guys at tier1mtg.dk and their associates.
Tier1Mtg is working hard on making GP-like tournaments in Denmark (albeit smaller in attendance), with the same level of nice venue, well-stocked vendor, judges, live-stream and whatever else one would expect. They really do great work.
The tournament was part of a bigger “Old Boys Con” with several tournaments throughout the weekend as well as all the sideevents the attending players were able to find battling wizards for. It was also in the fair city of Copenhagen, so my whole weekend was booked for this.
Criteria for success
So, I had to get a whole weekend off for playing Magic. No kids, no household chores, no work, no gardening, no attending family birthdays or other. Only my own time, hanging out with like-minded, great people.
So I had to make it count. My criteria for success was therefore as follows (I hadn’t exactly written these down, but it was more or less, what I hoped for):
- I wanted to have a good time with old and new friends and acquaintances, I haven’t seen for more than a year
- I wanted to trade away a bunch of irrelevant modern cards for something cool
- I wanted to play at least 25 Wild Growths
- I wanted to try out my Alpha40 deck
- I wanted to try out one of my AB60 decks
- I wanted to play an Enchantress deck in the main tournament
- I wanted to make Time Elemental and Skull of Orm count in at least one match each
- I hoped to go 3-3 in a six round tournament
Let me tell you how it went…
Actually the decks – plural. As mentioned there were several tournaments available, so I brought three decks.
You can read about my Alpha40 deck here. It is a beautiful pile, of which I have no clue how it would fare in an Alpha40 league. Maybe I will find out one day.
For my AB60 deck, I brought this abomination:
I know it is not exactly a deck made for making friends, but I just love my Howling Mines, Psychic Venoms and Stone Rains so much, I simply had to put all of them in the same deck. AB60 decks are extreme beauties to behold. In all humbleness, I really think this is a great looking deck! I was also rather sure, that it would not be a bad deck – Black Vise is absurd, and this deck is able to pack a very strong punch very early in the game.
For the main tournament, I brought this:
Yes, as my most loyal readers may notice, this is a slightly revised version of one of the decks I mentioned in my MEGA article on control decks.
A very short explanation may be in order.
I did not want to stuff the deck with all the great restricted cards, even though the deck could relatively easy be changed to contain a couple of black cards, and possibly a Balance.
I wanted to play a clean control deck. A deck where the main plan is to build up resources until your engine makes you so much advantage, that the opponent can’t keep up. And keep in mind, the engine here is not only Verduran Enchantress. There are many intricate synergies and some very potent cards to help you further your game plan.
There are some notable omissions in the deck – Sylvan Library, Counterspells – to mention the most obvious. I left out Library because it is often not worth it, and I am almost never able to draw an extra card off of it, because my life is a resource I spent aggressively, by being slow. And I simply couldn’t find room for Counterspells.
“Stop it – and tell us how it went! Tell us with pictures!”
Well, okay then. Let me just say, it was great. It was a fantastic deck to play, my opponents were friendly, and my camera skills bad (as always, but you know the drill).
My six rounds of main tournament went like this
Round 1 against Steffen Sveegaard playing unpowered UWG Midrange (CE/IE was banned, so Steffen was not able to pack his most powerful punch).
I have never met Steffen before – as you would expect, he was a wall-to-wall great guy. But in terms of cutting me some slack, he wasn’t exactly friendly.
I was looking comfy early on:
But in three games, Steffens full party of Disenchant, Swords to Plowshares, Savannah Lions and Serendib Efreets are simply too much for my beautiful damsels.
A few highlights from the round includes me playing three Icy Manipulator in game one, only to find Steffens three Disenchants. A devastating double Dib into Armageddon play from Steffen in game three. Oh, and this game two:
This was why I wanted to play this deck. These kinds of board-states are fun beyond measure! I Love it. There is just a bunch going on! Skull of Orm is suddenly a great card; Copy Artifact shows its frightening strength. It is just lovely magic!
I managed to play a total of 10 (!) Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 10
In round 2 I am up against another guy, I haven’t played before, Jeppe Grønbech, and just before we started the round, by chance, I am told he is playing Stasis.
Such information tells you a few things about an otherwise unknown guy: He is in it for the brewing; He must already have a lot of friends; He must be a stand-up guy.
I cannot attest to all the three points about Jeppe, but the last one was dead-on. He was indeed a stand-up, great guy. And it was a blast… or, well… It was like playing against a Stasis-deck, playing against him…
In the first game he locks me out and kills me with a Black Vise. I never play much, so he is not really sure, what I am up to.
The second game summarizes to this:
Nice board-state once again. I love Howling Mines! If there is no annoying Disenchants around, they really make sure, that the game sees some action.
Well, right after this picture was taken, Jeppe plays his lonely Hurkyl’s Recall, forcing me to put 8 cards back to my hand. I am now a 12 cards, at 14 life and Jeppe has two Black Vises in play. These posed a problem. I am able to play my Ancestral Recall on Jeppe, but I still have 11 cards in hand, which equals exacsies. If he had passed his turn, I would have won. No lies, I was a bit sour after that.
I managed to play a total of 3 Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 13
On to round 3, where I am up against Jacob Dahlerup with his UBW Robot Control deck.
Once again, Disenchant and Swords to Plowshares show why they are some very relevant cards to consider, if one considers attending a tournament.
I simply never attain any form of control in the match, and in the second fight, Jacob even humiliated me, by reanimating one of my beautiful ladies, and then continues to play two Copy Artifacts… At least she got to see some play, after she was so brutally mind twisted directly to my graveyard!
That, plainly speaking, was not going according to plan…
I managed to play a total of 3 Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 16
Hmm. Wasn’t exactly going as I had hoped with a 0-3 record. It was time to turn things around, if I should reach all of my goals.
In round 4 I am up against Jonathan Lentz. Another great guy, I have never met before. I must admit, that at this point I was actually a bit surprised – and also pleased – by all the new faces I faced. Such a sweet bonus for an already great day!
Well, Jonathan plays mono black. Which means he is playing one of the worst cards, my deck can face at all: The Underworld Dreams!
In game one, he plays it against me – no, correction, he plays three against me – and wins.
Game two is a bit different, I have sideboarded in some Ivory Towers, and I manage to hold him off his best cards – I stole a Su-Chi, and his draws wasn’t exactly impressive.
On to the third game. This was a nail-biter of the sorts that simply never occurs in other formats! It was an incredibly long game, and when he had me on 3 life, and threw an Underworld Dreams to the board, alongside his active Mishra’s Factory, I scooped up my cards. But Jonathan – the kind soul he is – let me put the cards back down, when I figured I wasn’t actually dead. I had an active Time Elemental!
Then the game progressed, and I won after some hard HARD work from my Time Elemental – it simply kept putting his dreams back into his hand, while my Ivory Tower slowly raised my life total.
At this point I was almost worried I would draw out my deck, before being able to kill Jonathan. But I managed to do great shenanigans with Time Elemental and Dance of Many… Oh the joy of this game will keep me up at nights to come.
I managed to play a total of 3 Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 19
Round 5 against Kristoffer Fabian Eriksen. Kristoffer is probably the most competitive Old School player I know, and he plays an unbelievably beautiful UWb LionDib deck with – I think – all beta where possible. He killed me mercilessly in two games, but simply to behold his cards, was an immense joy!
I managed to play a total of 3 Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 22
The last round – round 6 – was against Kenan Lars Salvarli. For the fourth time this tournament, I had the pleasure of meeting an Old School player, I had never met before. Kenan played RG aggro with a splash of black. It was aggressive, and he was not about to let me have a stroll in the park. As in, he starts the first game with a turn 1 Library of Alexandria.
I should admit, that I also had quite a few great cards in my starting hand…
But two Enchantresses within the first three turns is not enough against a complete library of knowledge and spells. After Kenan makes lightning strike both ladies, he twists my hand, and I die to LOA.
Game 2 was much more interesting
At this point, Kenan asked me how I win a game. A couple of turns later I had Chaos Orbed his threats (Skull of Orm, Copy Artifact, Chaos orb!!!) and made a couple extra Triskelions. He died.
Game 3 looks great for a long time
But then I somehow get within double bolt range. That was a mistake. Kenan takes it 2-1.
I managed to play a total of 5 Wild Growths in this match. Total number played: 27
1-5 wasn’t exactly what I was going for, but almost all rounds had at least one game, where I totally dominated the board. That was great fun.
The rest of the evening
Well, this also happened
The Danish national male football team played against Wales. That was a treat! Wales was handed their asses almost as thoroughly as I had been handed mine throughout the day. I feel I bonded somewhat with Gareth Bale, even though I am very certain I was having a much better day than he was.
The most important thing was, that during the football match I had some time to play a little AB60:
That was much fun, even though the format is a bit annoying if you don’t have any duals. But the cards are so very beautiful, that it doesn’t really matter who wins.
After the football match was won by Denmark, the main tournament was resumed, and after some very cool matches, Martin Skovgaard won!
What a champion! Maybe not the one we deserve, but he suddenly deserves it. Martin is a really great dude to be around, as well as a very good Magic player who has been around for literally decades!
And then it was on to other craziness
Yep I took my Alpha40 deck for a swing against Philip Kellerstrøms equally Red/Green deck. Phillips deck was not an Enchantress deck, but rather a really cool ramp deck that won by turning Craw Wurms and Obsianus Golems sideways. That was a joy. Even though Wooden Sphere is absolutely absurdly broken!
I managed to play a total of 13 Wild Growths in these games (!!). Total number played: 40 (YAY!)
Some finishing thoughts
My deck was not as bad as my result. At least I don’t think so. A couple of the games I lost was very close, and I don’t think it is unrealistic that I could have gone 3-3.
It was, however, exactly as fun to play, as I had imagined. It needs tweaks here and there, and especially the manabase need some work, but overall the deck really has a lot of great tools at its disposal.
It was simply a great weekend. An absolute blast! I am really looking forward to the next tournament I am able to attend. Just to meet these guys, and playing friendly matches, is very much worth it.
And for my list of success criteria? Who gives a damn! I played 40 Alpha Wild Growths in a singly day – who needs any more success than that?!
Thanks for reading! Take care