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Have You Ever Killed Yourself?

5.09.02  - Wow, sorry about the long spread between articles, folks.  I know I mentioned an article coming right before Regionals telling the specifics about my deck, but somehow that just didnít happen.  In the mean time, Iíve been very busy with school work and getting through various illnesses.  So here I am now with your next dose of rogue knowledge.

The Magic community has changed a lot since last I wrote.  Rizzo has left, Judgment has peaked around the corner, Regionals is only a memory, and the weather has gotten a little warmer (ok, this doesnít really have anything to do with the Magic community, but its such a big difference up here in New York).  Letís handle the Rizzo thing first.  Iíve got two words to sum it upÖ

Who cares?

Seriously, though, the weather warming up in New York is seen as a gift from god by most people.  It is said that the state of New York only has two seasonsÖ..  Cold and July.  Regardless of that, we are actually able to see that glowing ball of gas in the sky and it does seem to be warming things up a bit.  Unfortunately, this will cause an increase in perspiration from a majority of the already questionably odoriferous members of our tournaments.  While my area doesnít have many of these people, I know many areas do.  To those areas, I can only send you my hopes that these people discover that their home actually gets warm water.

So, does anybody actually remember Regionals?  I think I still do, but only because it was within the most interesting weekend Iíve had in my life.  Interesting, in this case, doesnít mean good, but it could have been a whole heck of a lot worse.  I could easily get into the whole story (trust me, Iíve told it enough times now that it is committed to memory word for word), but I donít really care enough to take note.  For those of you who want to know the raw truth of the matter, I went 3-4 before dropping and enjoying the rest of my weekend in the city. 

Ah, Judgment.  Well, letís all first make the assumption that the spoilers we have access to are correct.  All the cards from what weíve actually seen have been the same, and it all seems reasonable enough to assume it is the truth.  After making that assumption, we can begin to look at the set.  A lot of people have been asking me what I think of the set.  To each I reply the same.  ďI like the set, but not because of the power; I like it because of the strategy it will bring to the gameĒ.  Letís face it, the Wishes are just plain neat.  How many of us build our sideboards the night before or the morning of a tournament?  I see hundreds of hands in the air and Iím the only person in the room (interesting, eh?).  I do it, almost every week.  Granted, my sideboards are always the weakest parts of my deck (and sometimes thatís saying a lot) mainly because I donít put any thought or time into them.  The Wishes change all that.  If you are playing with a Wish, you now are actually playing with a 75 card deck with 15 cards that you donít have to worry about drawing until you want them.  Thatís right, suddenly all 75 cards matter.  In actuality, they did before, but most of us just needed a kick in the butt to make us realize.  Thank you, WotC, for giving us all that rock hard foot in our behinds.

What else is there in Judgement worth talking about yet?  Quiet Speculation has gotten quite a bit of hype so far, and I just canít see why.  While the strategy of playing 6/6 token beaters on turns 4-6 seems like a great strategy, this is also coming from a color combination that is used to playing a fatty and backing it up with counter power.  While this can certainly be done with the Speculation, it seems that the other Roars in your graveyard were fairly useless and that a different strategy could have been used to get to where you are.  Deep Analysis has been the other mentioned target for Q.S.  While drawing 6 cards off of the combination of 8 mana (all at 4 different payments of sorcery speed) seems decent, you must also consider that youíll be losing 9 life in the same process.  So we now have a total of 8 mana and 9 life for 6 cards.  Ok, whatís the big deal?  Even considering all this, I can see how Quiet Speculation can pack some speed for an already fast color combination.  Look for it to be played, but donít expect it to be as good as some people have suggested so far.

The funniest thing I have heard people say about a Judgement card is using Cunning Wish to fetch a Fact or Fiction.  Let me get this straight.  You want to move a Fact or Fiction to the sideboard (meaning you only run 3 in your main deck) so that you can pay an additional 3 mana and an additional card (assuming you get it) to get it?  Ok, have at it!  This strategy seems completely stupid to me, and Iíve been a blue mage for a long time.  Now, going to get one of the many instants blue decks normally play in their sideboard seems like a reasonable and smart plan, allowing the blue deck to hose its opponent in game 1.  ďI wish I had a Hibernation right nowÖ.. <chuckles>Ē

The two blue spells I like, however, are Mist of Stagnation and Spelljack.  Mist will just create a new deck type, and that is always good.  Having more things to look out for is always decent.  With the deck being base blue, it has a lot of tools to make it a competitive deck.  Spelljack is simply amazing.  Able to turn an opposing Shock into a 4 point life swing (2 points that I DONíT take and 2 points you DO), and allowing you to cast all your opponentís best spells, it provides as much versatility as you want.  The possibilities are endless, and 6 mana shouldnít be very hard for a dedicated control deck.  Does anybody play those anymore?

This articleís title comes from a thread on Pojoís message boards.  My apologies for not naming the user who started the thread, but Iím not connected to the internet as I write this (go check the thread out, it has plenty of amusing stories in it that most of us can relate to).  So, have YOU ever killed yourself?  In a realistic sense, obviously you havenít as I could never ask you this question if you had.  In a gaming sense, Iím sure many of us have.  Usually, we take somebody down with us if we can.  There was this guy I used to play with at my old college that would only play in group games.  He played a mono-red deck with just about every burn spell he owned (and even a lot that he didnít).  His main goal in every game was not to be the first person dead.  Woe to the person whom he picked to die first.  He was the only person I knew that could play burn in a group game and not have everyone instantly kill him (therefore killing themselves by choosing the wrong color).  After he killed that first person, who rarely had any question that he had been picked), this guy would often remove himself from the game by any means that he had available.  It was through this deck, however, that we determined that a player killed by Disintegrate must leave the room (be removed from the game entirely).  What a way to go!

Seriously though, I almost killed myself in another way this last month.  I almost quit playing Magic.  Suddenly, an urge came to me to just stop playing.  It was then that I realized that I spent hours within the course of a week reading articles, playing on Apprentice, talking strategy with friends, etcÖ  What would I be without Magic?  Iíd be a boring person who was dead to the world.  Iím sure that time would find me a new hobby to take up the time, but man would I miss Magic.  A word to the wise: donít quit Magic unless you have already found something else to take up your time.  For a few of us, that may mean a girlfriend (or boyfriend).  By all means, dating comes before Magic any day.

One more plug on the title.  Donít concede if you donít have to.  There are times when conceding is a good plan, especially when the time limit is concerned.  However, in those cases when the time limit is not a problem, donít concede.  I say this for two main reasons.  Donít kill yourself.  Thatís why you were paired against an opponent.  Let them have the satisfaction of doing what they designed their deck to do.  Secondly, something may happen.  Your opponent may not notice that if they just attack with what they have out that they kill you.  Mistakes can and will be made.  You may just win a game you shouldn't have.

Well, thatís all for tonight, folks.  Sorry for the lack of any deck list.  Just to report: there were two winners of the contest from my last article.  They will each receive prizes agreed upon by themselves and me.  If you are the one person who won and havenít stated what you want from me yet, please contact me as soon as possible so I can get out your prize.  To the other person, your cards are coming!

As always, feel free to contact me with any comments or suggestions you might have.

Until they outlaw caffeineÖÖÖÖÖ..

Andrew Chapman


AIM: wchrisrock




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