We just finished our first CBR MTG Highlander league in Canberra, we had a double swiss of 5 rounds with a cut to Top 4! 16 players joined the league with 21 Unique decks and we were able to gather some data on the decks played. Huge congratulations to our Top 4 for making it through!
1st Wes McTernan – Backyard Blitz
2nd Jacob Turner – Mardon’t
3/4th Morgan Sedaitis – Gardening Australia
3/4th Angus McKay – Oath Reanimator Continue reading
Top 16 Decklists are presented below, and feature match video coverage is here:
I’d like to take this opportunity to also say that I’m humbled by the number of players who were not afraid to sleeve up my unique brews, including one of my budget lists (woah!). I won’t take credit for Kess Pile which has experienced analogous evolution around Australia, but three of my brews Top 8-ed in the hands of some excellent players. Results include “Hootie & the BUG Fish” (3rd place this weekend, and a 2nd place finish last month), “ANNIHILATOR SIX” (5th place here, and 1st last month, plus a smattering of Top 16’s here too), and even my BUDGET list “Gruul Moon” (7th place this weekend in a field of decks many, many times the price!). I’d just like to say a very warm ‘thank you’ to all the players who have embraced my brews and piloted them to such great finishes, namely Luke Jefferey, Douglas Coff, Ryan Parry, JtMP, Soc (apologies to anyone I missed!). Some of you I hadn’t even met before and the moment I saw you rock up and jam one of my brews (and do the decks proud to such awesome finishes) made me feel very honoured. Thank you!
This finals match was very much a clash of old and new. Anatoli Lightfoot has been a member of the magic community for approximately 1000 years and has a well-earned reputation as an excellent player. Conversely Dylan Brown is much newer to the game however he is still a formidable competitor. Anatoli was piloting a Jeskai deck featuring cheap creatures such as Young Pyromancer and Geist of Saint Traft backed up by efficient cheap spells such as Brainstorm, Lightning Bolt and counterspells. Dylan’s weapon of choice was a heavy-hitting four colour midrange deck filled with powerful multi-colour spells that aim to overpower its opponents with sheer value for mana. It features several creatures with cascade and even spends a full four points on Ancestral Recall.
Our beloved site has received a revamp! Whilst AusEternal is an outlet for Legacy and Vintage too, the primary reason players visit the site is in the search for information on Highlander (everyone’s favourite format). Until now it has been tricky for newer players to locate Highlander deck lists, and in addition, the valuable discussions that we have on FaceBook about archetypes end up getting pushed down the front page.
The new site structure is now designed to be more user-friendly specifically for deck and metagame discussion. There is a dedicated tab above for HIGHLANDER DECKS which takes you straight to the new forum, in which we have about three-dozen threads each dedicated to a specific Archetype. The Archetypes are loosely organised into three categories:
This is write up about moon effects, specifically Back to Basics, Blood Moon and Magus of the Moon. The argument for adding a point to Blood Moon and Back to Basics is one full of misunderstanding and confusion. Luke did a write up on his blog at highlander4eva.blogspot.com.au arguing why they shouldn’t be pointed, but even a quick read of his article hints at a strong justification for pointing moon effects. So I’m just going to take apart his argument one step at a time and use his own reasons to show why both Blood Moon and Back to Basics deserve a point.
A week ago, I was just a typical Planeswalker, doing my best to sneak in extra preparation for the Highlander National Championship, fully aware that I wouldn’t be able to borrow an Ancestral Recall for my control deck. So I put together a list that would use Sol Ring to power out quick four mana spells to fuel lots of cute graveyard interactions like Sedraxis Specter, Rise // Fall, Unburial Rites, Dig Through Time and Treasure Cruise. It seemed passable, but I felt it wasn’t amazing. It was too clunky to function without an early Sol Ring, and even when I had the turn 1 Sol Ring, I felt that it still couldn’t quite match the competition.
“Josh, is Splinter Twin a deck in Highlander?”
“Can we make it one?”
Shane mentioned in one of his earlier articles that some Highlander decks are built on “niche (terrible) combos”. I’m here to show you the steps I took to construct a deck based around a specific, niche combo, One of the easiest mistakes to make when building decks for Highlander is to have too many ideas, including too many niche cards, and then finding that your deck is unfocused and doesn’t perform optimally in any role. These steps will help you to refine your deck construction.
“Tolarian Academy, tap for six, cast Time Spiral?” Your opponent may sigh and glance towards the game timer, but that hardly matters, because not only is casting Time Spiral incredibly fun, you have probably just won the game.
Of course in highlander only a single copy of Time Spiral is permitted, and it isn’t free. However, changes to the points list over the past year mean you can now afford to play multiple draw seven effects without spending all your points. Let’s take a look at the relevant changes which help this deck out.
Highlander decks built by Canberra players are traditionally known for greedy mana bases, fringe cards, and niche (terrible) combos. My new Reanimator list is a typical Canberra deck. Considering the unusual amounts of praise the deck has received from other Magic Players including ‘It’s OK’ (from Juzza, high praise indeed), ‘I mean, I wouldn’t want to play against you’ (not sure if he meant me or the deck) and ‘I thought you usually played bad decks’ I think the community might be starting to recognise that Reanimator has become a player in the Highlander metagame.
AusEternal is an open blog for the Australian eternal community. If you want to write something up, drop us a line on Facebook. If you have tournament results from either a small or large event, post them up in our forums.