Dragon’s Maze, the final set in the hugely popular Return to Ravnica block, draws nigh. Already we’ve heard about shockland re-reprints, a guild versus guild footrace, and at least 10 new multicolor legends to fuel the Commander fire.
The prerelease for Dragon’s Maze is set for April 27-28, so be sure to check with your local store about specific times and entrance fees. The one card you know you’ll get (although you can’t play with it this time)? Maze’s End. It’s a little funny to me that the first card you get upon “entering” the Maze is, in fact, the very end of the Maze. That aside, Maze’s End is a very interesting card to touch upon, so I’m going to be covering it in a two-part article series.
Game Day for Dark Ascension was February 25th, and I’d been itching to play in a Standard event for a while. When it turned out I needed to go by my folks’ house in Hillsborough that weekend to pick up a package that was accidentally shipped there, I decided I would go to the event at The Toy Factory, a shop I used to frequent in high school and during the summers in college. I’d been thinking about playing some sort of Red deck for weeks, owing to the good cards available and my general comfort with the buildable archetypes, but I didn’t start putting together a list until Friday afternoon, the day before the event. The initial build was an Aggro deck with a heavy Goblin component, also running Hellrider and Hero of Oxid Ridge. It looked good on paper, but it definitely didn’t turn out that way in practice. What I eventually ended up with was completely different.
I didn’t have everything I needed for the deck, but thankfully Chewie had the rest, and he was willing to let me borrow it. That night, I went to visit him to do some borrowing and last minute brainstorming, and to play a few friendly games with the deck just to see how it felt. It felt awful. Game after game, it was being mercilessly crushed by the casual decks Chewie was picking out of his boxes, without even trying to pick any that would be a tough fight. It was well after midnight when we tore my deck down and started over, and eventually we realized my existing sideboard was essentially a method of transforming the maindeck into an anti-token/anti-swarm Big Red deck. It was 2 in the morning before I was finally in the bed, but the extra effort was well worth it. My first game with the new and revamped deck against another person was Round 1 of Game Day, and I ended up 2nd place among the 14 players in the event.
by William Bloodworth, aka Bill, aka Kurai Seraphim, aka *REDACTED*
I’m not a pro player. I’m not really even a casual player anymore, as my playgroup has long since scattered across the country. No, I’m one of those awkward in-between players who does well at FNM but can’t seem to make it to the top 8 of a PTQ, much less qualify for a serious event. For me, Magic is about applying myself to something that I can always get better at by reflecting on my mistakes until avoiding them becomes second nature. For this reason, I push myself to attend bigger events whenever possible.
I traveled to Charlotte with the Mana Pool dorks early Saturday morning. I woke up extra early and set out about half an hour before I needed to because, historically, I’m really good at getting myself lost. I’ve ended up in the wrong city looking for game shops on the wrong main street before, so I always leave myself extra buffer. Thankfully, I’ve been to Chewie’s before and actually found it this time, so my day began with a promising start.