Games Haven Monthly $1K Series 2018

2nd September 2018

Games Haven Paya Lebar

Matthew (Lightning Bolt) Yee

36 players arrived for our September $1K Series event at the very start of the month to try and earn some sweet, sweet cash. The Modern season is reaching its twilight period, with Guilds of Ravnica releasing in a month, so there are precious few Modern PPTQs left, which makes every single practice session worth it. Our Jurong store PPTQ is one of these (on the 9th of September), and naturally, this timetabling was intentional. We hope that all attendees got in some good practice, especially if you're also joining us in Jurong for the PPTQ.

No image sums up the event as well as the one above. By now no one should be surprised - Burn is the island's favourite Modern deck (see the irony there? Burn? Island? Never mind). With Burn a formidable and familiar enemy, we saw plenty of maindeck tweaks to have better Game 1s against Turn 1 Goblin Guide. Maindeck Timely Reinforcements and higher numbers of maindeck Wurmcoil Engine and Scavenging Ooze were among these choices, as well as a higher number of fight-fire-with-fire similarly linear aggressive decks like YOLO One, Affinity and Kiln Fiend Prowess.

Naturally, this led to some games being decided very early, with the record going to a Game 1 that lasted only 3 minutes. The takeaway from all this is that with the early turns of a Modern game being so important, an essential skill to pick up for the format is an often-underrated skill - the mulligan decision. The rhythm of the starting hand can make or break your game, so deciding if the hand will play out well is crucial. Furthermore, with hand disruption so efficient in the format with the likes of Thoughtseize, Kitesail Freebooter and accidentally Burning Inquiry, the skill is a bit harder to pick up than one would think. Nevertheless, it is still a worthwhile skill to learn.

That's not to say that all games were finished in time for dinner though, there was plenty of grindiness to go around still. Tron and Jund put up a good fight against the non-Burn linear decks, and control had a solid presence, putting 2 different versions into the Top 8. The situation is not hopeless for you counterspell lovers out there, between Teferi and Anger of the Gods, there are still plenty of options for you yet! Special mention goes to the Mono-Red Prison deck, who bravely attempted to stall out all kinds of aggro but sadly missed his spot in the Top 8.

A notable absence from the tables were all forms of Combo, unless you are the type of player who considers Infect a combo deck. Without combo at the tables, the decks that tweaked their maindecks to fight aggro were handsomely rewarded, as their choices were all validated from the moment they saw the Turn 1 Mountain. Despite not having an entire arm of the metagame trifecta though, we had plenty of rogue decks to pick up the slack. Besides the aforementioned Mono Red Prison, we also bore witness to interesting games by Mill, Elfball and even the relative newcomer to the scene Blue Steel.

Our Top 8 was a much more focused Top 8 than our previous 2 large Modern events (i.e. less variety), but we're not too discouraged by that fact. This event was one of many, and the pool of Modern decks is so large and the room for error so narrow that today's metagame can always be overturned tomorrow. Besides, it's not as if we had 8 Burn decks in the Top 8 anyway. After a heart-pounding final between two complete polar opposites Burn and full-foil UW Control, Melvin Cheng emerged the winner after some exquisite firecrafting! Many congratulations to Melvin and all the Top 8!!

Top 8 Decklists

1st Place - Melvin Cheng

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
Burn

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Eidolon of the Great Revel. It made life hard for everyone.

Edit after the finals: TOPDECKED EXQUISITE FIRECRAFT FOR THE WIN OMG

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Searing Blaze, the extra reach really helped to close out games.

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Hurting myself to my own Eidolon.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Not really, as I'm still learning and understanding the format.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Jump-start. Because graveyard plays are good plays.

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

I'd like to keep my expectations low to be surprised.

 

Boros Burn - Main Deck

1x Arid Mesa

1x Stomping Ground

4x Inspiring Vantage

2x Sacred Foundry

4x Bloodstained Mire

4x Wooded Foothills

3x Mountain

2x Grim Lavamancer

4x Monastery Swiftspear

4x Goblin Guide

4x Eidolon of the Great Revel

4x Lightning Bolt

3x Lightning Helix

4x Rift Bolt

4x Skullcrack

4x Searing Blaze

4x Boros Charm

4x Lava Spike

Sideboard

3x Exquisite Firecraft

1x Ensnaring Bridge

2x Rest in Peace

2x Searing Blood

2x Deflecting Palm

2x Path to Exile

3x Destructive Revelry

2nd Place - Alex Keng

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
WU Miracles

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Terminus!! [Blind flip] saved 2x lethal attacks from Infect and Bogles.

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Baneslayer Angel, because it outpaced Burn, forced pump spells on Infect creatures. Eng

Giap just sold it (the foil) to me yesterday.

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Cantripping while [still] having difficulty finding the answer.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Couldn't win at all due to time call against Elves. Could only play for draw against lethal army with chaining Cryptics amd denying away the 3rd mana for Shaman of the pack post-combat.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Jump-start! It's Madness time!!

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

Shock lands lor, what else :P

 

UW Miracles Control – Main Deck

4x Celestial Colonnade

4x Field of Ruin

4x Flooded Strand

1x Ghost Quarter

1x Glacial Fortress

1x Hallowed Fountain

5x Island

1x Mystic Gate

3x Plains

1x Prarie Stream

2x Snapcaster Mage

2x Vendilion Clique

1x Condemn

3x Cryptic Command

1x Entreat the Angels

2x Logic Knot

1x Mana Leak

1x Negate

4x Opt

1x Oust

4x Path to Exile

1x Peek

1x Remand

1x Supreme Verdict

3x Terminus

1x Think Twice

1x Timely Reinforcements

1x Detention Sphere

1x Search for Azcanta//Azcanta, the Sunken Ruin

2x Jace, the Mind Sculptor

1x Teferi, Hero of Dominaria

Sideboard

1x Baneslayer Angel

1x Celestial Purge

1x Ceremonious Rejection

1x Disenchant

2x Dispel

1x Lyra Dawnbringer

1x Negate

2x Rest in Peace

1x Settle the Wreckage

2x Stony Silence

1x Surgical Extraction

1x Timely Reinforcements

Top 4 - Koh Joon Hao

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
UR.

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Thing in the Ice.

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Plumeveil, punishes the smelly aggro decks.

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Chau chiu (smelly hands)

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Opponent forgot to play Deflecting Palm on my Awoken Horror before my Dispel [for something else] resolved, allowing be to Snapcaster -> Dispel [the Deflecting Palm] again.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Surveil.

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

Reprint Lightning Helix and enemy fetches.

 

UR Control – Main Deck

7x Island

1x Mountain

4x Scalding Tarn

2x Steam Vents

2x Sulfur Falls

1x Spirebluff Canal

1x Desolate Lighthouse

3x Flooded Strand

1x Augur of Bolas

4x Snapcaster Mage

4x Thing in the Ice

4x Serum Visions

4x Opt

1x Ancestral Vision

4x Remand

1x Logic Knot

1x Spell Snare

4x Cryptic Command

4x Lightning Bolt

2x Abrade

1x Burst Lightning

1x Electrolyze

2x Blood Moon

1x Jace, the Mind Sculptor

 

Sideboard

2x Anger of the Gods

2x Relic of Progenitus

1x Spreading Seas

1x Young Pyromancer

1x Vendilion Clique

1x Grim Lavamancer

1x Izzet Staticaster

1x Plumeveil

1x Engineered Explosives

1x Dispel

1x Ceremonious Rejection

1x Spell Snare

1x Rending Volley

Top 4 - Foo Zhi Jie

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
Mardu Pyromancer

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

TWICE Elemental/Zombie/Spirit/Monk tokens, is there a need to explain more?

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Hazoret...... Nah kidding, my Mina tokens <3

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Never draw Kolaghan's Command when I needed to open flood gates for my infinite TWICE Zombie tokens [Editor's note for context - board locked with Liliana emblem and 2 Ensnaring Bridges on the other side]

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Opponent had 2 Ensnaring Bridges and locked both sides out but died to my Hazoret's burn.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

ジャンプ スタート

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

なし

 

Mardu Pyromancer - Main Deck

1x Marsh Flats

3x Polluted Delta

4x Bloodstained Mire

2x Mountain

2x Swamp

4x Dragonskull Summit

1x Godless Shrine

2x Blood Crypt

1x Sacred Foundry

4x Young Pyromancer

1x Hazoret the Fervent

4x Bedlam Reveler

4x Faithless Looting

4x Lightning Bolt

2x Fatal Push

3x Thoughtseize

3x Inquisition of Kozilek

1x Dreadbore

1x Terminate

1x Collective Brutality

4x Lingering Souls

3x Kolaghan's Command

2x Blood Moon

2x Liliana of the Veil

1x Liliana, the Last Hope

Sideboard

1x Ensnaring Bridge

2x Monastery Mentor

2x Nihil Spellbomb

1x Anger of the Gods

1x Blood Moon

2x Damping Sphere

1x Surgical Extraction

2x Kambal, Consul of Allocation

2x Stony Silence

1x Wear//Tear

Top 8 - Lim Jiade

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
Burn

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Searing Blaze, Destructive Revelry, Grim Lavamancer.

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Jap foil Grim Lavamancer. Paid $160 and it won Affinity. Bu!

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Play sequencing. Unable to draw Goblin Guide in opening hand.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

[Watched] an opponent at 15 life, while [Peigen] Collected Company into 2 Shaman of the Pack, dealing 16 points of damage to win the game. Affinity would have won the next turn if not for that. Kudos to Yu Peigen and Elves!

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Convoke.

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

Shocklands

Naya Burn - Main Deck

4 Wooded Foothills
2 Arid Mesa

4 Bloodstained Mire

3 Inspiring Vantage

2 Sacred Foundry

1 Stomping Ground

1 Snow-Covered Mountain

2 Mountain

4 Goblin Guide

4 Monastery Swiftspear

4 Eidolon Of Great Revel

2 Grim Lavamancer

4 Lightning Bolt

4 Rift Bolt

4 Lava Spike

4 Searing Blaze

4 Boros Charm

4 Lightning Helix

3 Skullcrack

Sideboard

3 Path to Exile

2 Searing Blood

2 Rest In Peace

4 Destructive Revelry

2 Atarka's Command

2 Ensnaring Bridge

Top 8 - Yu Peigen

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
BG Elves

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Collected Company, Collected Company into two Shaman of the Pack for 16 damage

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Nettle Sentinels. Pretty good beats early + crazy synergy with Heritage Druid

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Deck is fighting a 85-degree uphill battle against Terminus.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Buddy Destructive Revelry'd a Spirit Link against Bogles. Thought he was a goner.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Convoke. I don't know what all the new mechanics do, not updated with the spoilers.

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

Shocks are back! Guilds are back! Bling walkers are here!

 

BG Elfball - Main Deck

4x Cavern of Souls

4x Blooming Marsh

4x Gilt-Leaf Palace

2x Horizon Canopy

1x Westvale Abbey

3x Forest

4x Elvish Mystic

4x Llanowar Elves

4x Heritage Druid

4x Nettle Sentinel

4x Dwynen's Elite

4x Elvish Clancaller

4x Elvish Archdruid

4x Shaman of the Pack

2x Ezuri, Renegade Leader

3x Lead the Stampede

1x Chord of Calling

4x Collected Company

Sideboard

3x Damping Sphere

2x Reclamation Sage

2x Shapers' Sanctuary

2x Abrupt Decay

1x Stain the Mind

1x Fracturing Gust

2x Scavenging Ooze

2x Thoughtseize

Top 8 - Nicholas Lee

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
Burn - lucksack deck.

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

All burn cards are as good as each other. They all deal 3 to face.

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Rift Bolt. Topdeck after Kelvin Chew named the Lightning Helix in my hand [for Meddling

Mage].

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Worship.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

My Round 2 opponent Abrupt Decay'd his own Tarmogoyf so that he could gain life with Scavenging Ooze.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

The mechanic where you get to pay 2 life and have your dual land enter untapped.

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

The set-release day pack war.

Naya Burn - Main Deck

4x Wooded Foothills

4x Bloodstained Mire

2x Arid Mesa

4x Mountain

3x Inspiring Vantage

2x Sacred Foundry

1x Stomping Ground

4x Eidolon of the Great Revel

4x Goblin Guide

4x Monastery Swiftspear

4x Lightning Bolt

4x Rift Bolt

4x Lava Spike

4x Boros Charm

4x Lightning Helix

4x Searing Blaze

2x Shard Volley

2x Skullcrack

Sideboard

2x Deflecting Palm

4x Destructive Revelry

3x Path to Exile

2x Rest in Peace

2x Searing Blood

2x Skullcrack

Top 8 - Daston Lam

Top 8 Profile

What deck did you play today?
Bogles

 

What would you say was the best card in your deck, and why?

Slippery Bogle. New best friend.

 

What card in your deck would you say performed unexpectedly well today, and why?

Leyline of Sanctity. Trump card against Burn.

 

What were some of the challenges you faced while piloting this deck?

Counting combat damage. Math is hard.

 

Any interesting plays you made or witnessed today at the $1K Series?

Joon Hao playing the surprise blocker Plumeveil versus Humans.

 

Guilds of Ravnica spoilers have begun! Which of the 5 guild mechanics are you most excited about? (Returning mechanic Convoke, Mentor, Jump-start, Overgrowth, Surveil)

Jump-start!

 

Anything else you're excited or hopeful for about Guilds of Ravnica?

More powerful cards for my Standard deck.

GW Hexproof Bogles - Main Deck

4x Windswept Heath

4x Razorverge Thicket

4x Horizon Canopy

3x Temple Garden

2x Misty Rainforest

1x Dryad Arbor

1x Plains

1x Forest

4x Slippery Bogle

4x Gladecover Scout

2x Kor Spiritdancer

2x Silhana Ledgewalker

2x Path to Exile

4x Spider Umbra

4x Daybreak Coronet

4x Rancor

4x Ethereal Armor

3x Leyline of Sanctity

2x Spirit Mantle

2x Hyena Umbra

2x Gryff's Boon

1x Cartouche of Solidarity

Sideboard

3x Stony Silence

2x Gaddock Teeg

2x Rest in Peace

2x Seal of Primordium

2x Spirit Link

2x Damping Sphere

1x Dromoka's Command

1x Path to Exile