It was a weekend filled with lots, and lots of Magic the Gathering.

It all started Saturday morning around four o'clock in the AM when a group of
the RIW crew left from Livonia and headed down to the PTQ in Columbus. The PTQ
was great. Several Vintage players were in attendence: Paul Mastriano, Steve
Menendien, Paul Nicolo, and myself. However, none of us did particularly well. I
was out by round six with an unimpressive 4-2 record playing my chant list, and
so was pretty much everybody else. I ended up staying over at Steve's place for
the night, and going out to eat the the largest Max and Erma's that I have ever
seen. Unfortunately, Fishy had family obligations for Sunday and was unable to
attended the event as I had earlier hoped. It would be I alone, to represent
Michigan in this event.

The tournament was held at the Soldiery, which is a nice venue and by the time
the event got started it looked like we were going to have about 21 players;
though for the smallness of the field, it was offset by the fact that the talent
level was fairly high. Among the players at the event we had:

Steve Menendien
Paul Mastriano
Doug Linn
Nat Tram
Mark Trogden
and myself

Which means, that approximately 1/3 of the field was high caliber players. I, of
course was playing my signature Burning Slaver list with a few modifications. In
this report I'm really only going to talk about games that really stick out in
my mind as having been interesting.

Here is what I played:


4 Force of WIll
4 Mana Drain
4 Brainstorm
4 Thirst for Knowledge

1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
1 Tinker
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Gifts Ungiven
1 Chain of Vapor
1 Echoing Truth

3 Goblin Welder
1 Burning Wish
1 Gorilla Shaman

1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Extirpate

1 Crucible of Worlds
1 Mindslaver
1 Sundering Titan
1 Duplicant
1 Tormod's Crypt

1 Black Lotus
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Ruby
1 Sol Ring
1 Mana Crypt
1 Mana Vault

1 Darksteel Citadel
1 Strip Mine
1 Tolarian Academy

2 Polluted Delta
2 Flooded Strand
2 Island
1 Snow Covered Island

3 Volcanic Island
2 Underground Sea


1 Shattering Spree
1 Extirpate
1 Deep Analysis
1 Empty the Warrens
1 Solem Simulacrum
2 Red Elemental Blast
3 Duress
1 Pyroclasm
1 Fire/Ice
1 Pyrite Spellbomb
1 Hurkyl's Recall
1 Rack and Ruin

Round 1/ Psychatog

Game One: This game is a real lesson: I draw my hand of seven and it's no good.
I draw my hand of six and it's no good. I draw my hand of 5, and no land. I sigh
and draw my hand of four. And win the game. It was one of the more difficult
games that I've played, but it is possible to win on a mulligan to four. My grip
of four is.

Polluted Delta
Mox Sapphire
Demonic Tutor
Mana Drain

He is on the play, and doesn't do anything I draw a second drain and DT for
Ancestral Recall. He plays a land on two but doesn't do anything. I miss my next
2 land drops. Eventually, he casts an EOT Intuition, while I have three Mana up.
I respond with Ancestral Recall and it resolves while he has only 1 Mana up. I
Extirpate the Accumulated Knowledges that he seeks with the Intuition.
Eventually, I Mana Drain a second Intuition and use it to chain two Thirst for
Knowledges into each other and take control of the game. In all fairness my
opponent drew 0 counterspells in the entire game, which allowed me to resolve my
counters to get drain mana, and my Ancestral to go through. Sometimes heavy
mulligans pay off.

I get game two. and I am 1-0 in matches.

Round 2 Nat Moes playing Belcher/Empty

Game one: A lesson (you can't always mise what you want)

I mulligan to six knowing that I am playing against a very quick combo deck. My
six on the play is

Mox Ruby
Gorilla Shaman
Echoing Truth
Force of Will
Force of Will

This hand IS garbage, but I try to mise it anyways. The hope is that he will
dump some Moxes early and try to get an empty into play. Also he will play land
grant so that I can see what he has and how I can disrupt his combo. Within two
turns I should get to blue Mana and have Echoing Truth if he makes tokens, or a
Brainstorm to start digging and hitting mana. Also the Shaman will ensure that I
can start picking off his moxes.

On turn one I play nothing and pass.

He is surprised. But, takes his turn. He plays Taiga and He casts land grant

Red Elemental Blast
Memory Jar
Living Wish
Tinder Wall
Tinder Wall

What a disaster. I just lose this game because I kept a hand banking on him
having a hand other than what he had. Had he of kept a hand like:

Tider Wall
Land Grant
Living Wish

I would most certainly have won. But double Red blast, no Moxes sealed my doom.
Sometimes it doesn't pay to try and mise.

Game two I mulligan to five, and he plays empty the Warrens for 16 guys on the
first turn. I do not have, nor do I draw Echoing Truth and I die.

Record 1-1

Round 3 Doug Linn playing T1T

Game one is about the worst I've ever played. Both of us, Doug and I are
experienced Drain players; However, we both keep abysmal hands trying to Mise
our ways out and neither of us get there. As a result a small crowd of about
five watch us play the dumbest game of magic ever seen.

He is on the play and casts Lotus sacrifices the Lotus for Blue and casts Thirst
for Knowledge. I allow it. He discards a Darksteel Colossus and passes. A no

I draw for the turn and stare down at my no lander.

Thirst for Knowledge
Thirst for Knowledge
Force of Will
Mana Drain
Mox Sapphire
Mox Ruby
Mox Jet

get there. 3 Moxes go down. Thirst? Force of Will. Force Back. Hmmm, you must
really want that Thirst, Force back. Hmmm, Awkward... Pass the Turn. 

Doug draws an Island and passes. I attempt a second Thirst, and it goes through,
I pitch a Mindslaver, but don't draw a land and Pass. Doug draws and passes. I
untap and don't draw a land I play Welder. He Chain of Vapors it at the end of
turn. Awkward. He draws and plays an Underground Sea, and then passes. I
Brainstorm at his end of turn looking for my first land drop of the game and
see, Welder, Shaman, Academy. Awkward.

I draw Tolarian Academy and replay my Welder. My hand at this point is utter


and I pass. Apparently he has no answer to the onboard Slaver next turn so he
tries to go off prematurely. He ends up casting about 15 spells including Time
Spiral but the Tolarian Academy allows me to shut off his Draw Spells after the
Spiral resolves while he is looking for a lethal Tendrils. He has to pass the
turn to my board of Academy and three Moxes and Welder. I play more mana Tinker
for Slaver and Win.

I win game two with the nuts.


Round 4 Paul Mastriano. playing Long.

Surprise, I win game one and Duress him infi in game two. They were both close
games but I don't remember exactly what happened. But I won.


Round 5 ID with Mark Trogden.

Top Eight

Paul Mastriano: Close, close match. Due to some things happening I advance to
play against Gifts in the top 4.

Top 4: Gifts: I don't know exactly what happened in this match. But, basically I
was dead on board for about three turns in a row and bluffed my opponent off
making the right plays. If somebody else recalls the specifics and wants to put
them up here I would be very grateful. All I remember is this string of events.

He Ancestrals, I Force pitching Drain, he Drains my Force, I Drain his Drain and
he Misdirects my Drain. Resolves Recall with me tapped out of blue mana. I have
3 lands and a Mana Vault (which is why I Forced first, because I needed to Drain
a bigger spell to cast my Sundering Titan in hand. My hand is Titan, Pearl FYI).
He untaps with 3 new cards, five lands in play and five Drain mana. Casts Gifts
Ungiven, gets Demonic Tutor, Yawgmoths Will, Recoup, and Time Walk. I give him
Recoup and Walk. He casts Walk and loses the game. Yeah, that's what I thought

Game two. He beats the crap out of me.

Game three. I steam roll him with the nuts. Mana Crypt, sooooo Goood
I Split with Mark in the finals.


Steve - thanks for letting me crash at your place
Paul - always a good time when you are around
Mark Trogden - always good to see you around
Doug Linn - for playing bad magic with me.. And especially for the mental Magic
JR - for agreeing to testify in my lawsuit against Jersey Mike's Subs

Slops - Put fishy on? Where Fishy?

It was a fun tournament, thanks to the Soldiery for putting it on.
Congratulations to Trogden for Burning Face. Both decks in the finals involved
Burn in their titles.

In a side note I was 8-0 in games of Mental Magic this weekend. The highlight of
the weekend was trapping Steve under his own Trinisphere, and then playing
Winter Orb while he was tapped out. OMG what an insane play!

Cheers and thanks for reading!