How about an Elder Dragon in your face?
Last Sunday we had a small tournament here in Stockholm with 12 participants and I decided to write a small tournament report about it. Mostly because of the deck I chose to play, a new brew I call CandleFactory. I got the idea for the deck just a week before the tournament just before my friend Johan Råberg was about to come over for some play testing. The plan was to play test a new build of my Field of Dreams deck to have it ready for the next big tournament I’m going to go to but I just needed to try out this idea first so we played a couple of games with me on this deck first.
Choosing the deck
The day before the tournament we played again and I decided to give it a shot as I didn’t have the energy to build my Field of Dreams deck. I actually didn’t even build a sideboard for Candle Factory as it was only an idea and not meant to be played yet. The morning after I took 15 cards in 15 min to make a sideboard so please don’t judge me for the stupid choices there. I was just too tired to do anything else.
I’ll write a couple of words about the deck now but I will post a “deck tech” or more of a brewing post later on describing my thought process, card choices and also publish 2 - 3 more iterations of the deck. And all except one of them are probably a lot better.
The main plan of the deck is to use the interaction between Candelabra of Tawnos and Mishra’s Factory to make your Mishra’s BIG. It is not uncommon to be able to have a 6/6 Factory. 4 Copy Artifact is mandatory because they essentially let you play with 8 factories or get another Candelabra if needed. That was the foundation that got me brewing and this time it ended up with also playing Maze of Ith (super with Candelabra), Guardian Beast combo with two Transmute Artifacts and also a couple of artifact threats that are good to copy with Copy Artifact. But I’ll leave it at that for now and get back to you with a more in depth post about a couple of ideas and how it actually works but I’ll give you a short tournament report so you can read a little bit about how it worked this time at least.
And now to the tournament
It will actually be my first “real” tournament report as I seldom have time after a tournament to get my thoughts down or I was to drunk to really remember anything. But this time no alcohol was allowed and I’m home sick because of my chronic tiredness (yes, it’s actually a thing but a little more complicated than that) so here goes.
Decklists for all of my opponents and the other players at the tournament can be found here.
Round 1 - Böte on a Trick Deck - 2-0
My first round was against the newbie Böte who had put together a Trick Deck. The first game he lands two Howling Mines quite quickly but he can’t find a Underworld Dreams after I Mind Twist one out of his hand. After that I’m well ahead of cards and have a better board so I drop a Icy, copy it and start to tap his Howling Mines so we just draw one card each. My Factories then finishes the job with the help of a Candelabra to make the two of them hit for 6.
Game two I play and early Ivory Tower that works wonders against his Underworld Dreams. After that he tries to destroy my board with a Energy Flux but I can pay for everything except a tapped Mana Vault and then after it destroys his own Fellwar Stone I disenchant it. After that I copy my Icy a couple of times and tap down all his lands until a 7/7 Mishra runs through his Maze of Ith. I attacked with two, he mazes one, it pumps the second one to a 3/3 then I untap them both two times with two Candelabra to make it a 7/7
In one of the matches I also get to use Candle on my Library of Alexandria before he Sinkholes it. That was fun and exactly what the deck wants to do.
Round 2 - Magnus Engdal on Erhnam Burnem - 2-0
Sorry to say that this became a feature match as Magnus doesn’t do much for both of our games. The first game I play an early Su-Chi and he got stuck on mana. Later I end the game by playing a Triskelion and copying it.The second game he plays a couple of small creatures but I have a couple of Maze of Ith and Candelabras so I’m not that afraid. I play three(!) Copy Artifacts on my single Factory to make it a playset instead and with the help of Icy Manipulator and a copy of that I get past his Argothian Pixies to get the kill. One time he triple block my Factory but got the math wrong as I could pump it to a 6/6 and kill all three creatures.
Round 3 - Christofer Lindholm on BRG Aggro - 0-2
This is where I started to become too tired to play as I hadn’t slept well for a weeks or so because of reasons. But I don’t think my misplays actually mattered and the match would have ended in the same way anyway, at least that’s something. The first game I keep a hand with almost all mana and hope to draw good things. I also draw quite good but he has all the answers he needs and Crumbles my Icy and everything else I try to muster. I stabilize but it’s too late and he just need to wait for a burn spell.
Game two I get stuck on four mana after being one turn late with my Guardian Beast and he gets a Fellwar and Mox with a Shatterstorm. I never draw more mana and died with cards in hand without ever drawing a Maze of Ith.
Round 4 - Andreas Cermak on UW Midrange - 1-2
Don’t remember much of this as I mostly wanted to go home. Game one I know he rides a turn one Serra to victory after also hitting his Chaos Orb so he can destroy my Maze. Game two I get to copy my Triskelion two times but they don’t do much against his Personal Incarnation. I trade a little, get in some damage and it looks good but I need something more for the last push. I draw my Reconstruction, pick up an Icy and it’s over.
Game three is the game where I really doze off and don’t remember. I think he just had all the answers to what I did and my Mazes kept on hiding in the library.
On to the top 4
That concluded the swiss portion of the tournament and as I was 2-2 I was expecting to be able to at least take it a little easy, even though I needed to stay because I ran the stream. But, it happened to be so that I had the best tie breakers and made it to top 4 anyway. Always fun to top a tournament but this time I would have rather been able to stop playing for the day. I may seem a bit negative here but I was not feeling to well this day. In the top 4 I got to play against my two losses from the swiss once again.
Semi Final - Christofer Lindholm BRG Aggro 2-1
So, let’s see if I can draw a little bit better this time as I think a creature deck like his is a good matchup for me. This match was on stream so I can tell you what happened as I watched it afterwards.
First game I mulligan to 5 and want to give up, I don’t have the energy for that. He starts by Strip Mining my land and Crumble my Mox and Fellwar. Fun times after a mull to five. I’m still able to put up a fight by starting to copy his Su-Chi with my only two lands. It trades for his Factory+Bolt and I get to play a Triskelion the turn after thanks to a Mana Vault. It trades for his Su-Chi and then he’s down to just a Factory. After some back and forth he deploys a bunch of threats which I'm able to fend of with my Candlestick and two Maze of Ith. Then I topdeck a Demonic to get Balance and kill all of his creatures. Maybe I can get this to work anyway? Sadly no, he topdecks Wheel the turn after and gets three rituals and a Fireball to close the game.
After that I take down the next two games by assembling the Guardian Beast and Chaos Orb combo quickly. It all went fairly quickly and I was so happy for that but I still got one more match. I should also add that I board in the third beast and board out a couple of expensive artifacts as his answers are so cheap for the artifacts but he has problems removing the beast. So this was the plan.
Now I just need a Candelabra
...and why not a Chaos Orb as well
Final - Andreas Cermak on UW midrange - 1-2
Before the game starts everybody except us leaves which makes it a little boring and as I mostly want to sleep I’m about to scoop. I ask Andreas if we can play the match at another time as no one is left but we decided to play anyway. Something I regret hehe. But that’s part of playing a tournament, you need to be able to focus all the way through.
In the first game here I get a Mana Vault and Mind Twist away his hand turn two, such a fun card, not. He still is able to almost win with a Factory as I draw nothing. But I stabilize with a Book and a Guardian Beast to block with.Then I end the game with a Triskelion and Copy Artifact. Oh, how I love that card!
Game two he get’s a crazy start with Time Walk and Timetwister and I draw no fast mana at all. I still am able to catch up and later assemble the combo for the win. But I need to hit one important flip to do it. I miss because of my sleep deprivation and he takes the game. In this game I also decide to board in the 3rd Beast tro try to win that way. I do however keep my other creatures in hope of overloading his plows.
Game three he draws perfectly by playing two Lions and then an Armageddon against my land centric deck. I still have a chance as I’m on 5 mana with a Mox and two Sol Ring (thanks to Copy Artifact) and have a Triskelion in hand. One land and his Lions will die and it will look good again. He follows it up with a Dust to Dust and I pack it up because I just want to go home.
Some last words
So that’s how the deck plays. It’s a pretty bad deck but it was tons of fun as it plays out so differently all the time. A big part of this is the Transmute Artifacts and Copy Artifacts which can be uses as many different things depending on how the board state. Either you make a bunch of Factories and Candles and win that way, or you copy Icy to control the game hard, or you go aggro by copying Su-Chi and Triskelion or you just assemble the Beast combo for the win.
Photos by Magnus Engdal.