with Andy Van Zandt
MMD Draft - Green Evasion
Yup, you heard me right, green evasion. With Darksteel in, the Mirrodin
block draft environment is distinctly faster, and aiming for an effective
control deck (which, as I mentioned in a prior article, is what green does
best in this format) is less likely to be a game-winning prospect. So
basically, you need a very very nice control deck, or green needs to be a
secondary color just for its removal and a few quality creatures, or you
need to draft yourself a nice green evasion deck. No, I don't mean
pro-artifact... I mean evasion.
What to Draft:
In the Mirrodin packs, you should be mostly aiming for fatties and
acceleration- the standard green fare. Plated Slagwurm, Trolls of
Tel-Jilad, Fangren Hunter, Myr Enforcer, and Malachite Golem, mostly in
that order of importance. There are a few other acceptable dudes, of
course, and some that you might not expect- Pewter Golem without any black
mana can still often do just fine in this deck. For acceleration, you have
the normal choices of myr and talismans, but you can also pick up viridian
joiners; and while it isn't usually acceleration, journey of discovery is
still mighty spiffy in this deck. It ensures you have the mana you need to
operate while thinning your deck and giving you card advantage. Of course,
the artifact removal and Predator Strikes are just dandy as you're going
along as well, and pro-artifact guys still give you the defense you need.
But more important than anything but slagwurm or trolls of tel-jilad?
Neurok Hoversail. Yup, that's where your evasion comes in. Generally, you
want a couple of these, no need to grab every one you see- but you do want
to make sure you get those couple, if possible. Trolls of Tel-Jilad also
kind of counts as your evasion too, but he is uncommon, so you can't
depend on him (for that matter, Loxodon Warhammer fills the slot nicely, but
don't expect to get passed it too often). Barring any of the aforementioned
picks, slagwurm armor is an offensive and defensive card that your beasties
will enjoy (also mentioned in a prior article). After that-
Your Darksteel pack will offer you some new fatties, But since they are
mostly rare and uncommon (like Fangren Firstborn and Death-mask Duplicant),
you'll most likely be picking up Tangle Golems, which are good enough to
make up for the lower number of solid common slots for you. Even your
artifact removal, oxidize, is not going to make it to you very often here,
since it's not common, and is one of the best splashable artifact kills.
You do get echoing courage, but before you start snagging those, make sure
you fill up on your share of Whispersilk Cloaks... and, if you can get them,
Surestrike Tridents. Yup, here's the evasion again. I generally want from
3-5 of the evasive equipment (hoversail, cloak, trident) for this deck. The
trident is optimal, since it lets you sit on defense with your fatty first
striker, then fireblast them at the end of their turn (have I mentioned this
before?). Most people will disparage the trident, but this is where it
shines. After that, nab some more acceleration (Darksteel Ingots, Reap and
Sow) if you didn't get enough in the first two packs.
You should already have a solid equipment contingent in your deck with the
pieces you need to go to work, so I'd steer clear of grabbing more... you
don't want 8 slots dedicated to equipment. It's better to take a card in
whatever your second color will be.
How to Play:
Since this is evasion based, you play much like the blue affinity deck- get
your flying fatty on-line as quick as possible, preferably using your mana
accelerants, then worry about your defense. As per the control deck, your
pro-artifact guys and 2/3 trolls will stop half their team, and hopefully
your subsequent fatties will deter the other half. Green's removal helps
immensely for this, since oxidize is so cheap, viridian shaman is a chump
blocker too, and you can deconstruct and lay a big guy in the same turn.
Since you've got the larger men, you'll often win air wars against blue if
you're using the hoversail, which is much fun; moreover, you get to attack
with your airborn enforcer, then move the hoversail over to a blocker.
That, along with the cheapness, is why hoversail is often better than
whispersilk cloak for your purposes.
Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Email me.
You can reach Andy at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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