Tuesday, February 11, 2014

MTGO Good Guy of the Week: Gallium

More Swiss queue action of the Theros variety (because I like to play as much Magic per draft). I had been on a roll, or at least what constitutes a roll for me with a 3-1 in a Sealed Daily with an amazing Prophet of Kruphix deck with both Bident of Thassa and Bow of Nylea. I lost in the 3rd round to a blitzy RB Aggro deck, the kind that I love to play. Those Erg Minotaurs can be quite problematic at times.

After that, I 3-0ed a Swiss Draft and suddenly had delusions of mediocrity. Could I get enough QPs for the MOCS Qualifier? It turns out that you need 15 for the preliminary tournament. Alas, even that seemingly modest amount is out of my reach, and I quickly proved it with Drafts of 2-1 and 1-2. At least in the last losing effort I met this week's MTGO Good Guy of the Week: Gallium.

In this Draft I had a ad BUG deck with double-color spells in each color (Bident, Nylea's Disciple, Keepsake Gorgon, etc). I had a lot of trouble settling on colors, and by the time I had realized by train wreck status, I couldn't round up enough mana-fixing to cover for it.

Gallium had a solid mostly-black deck. In Game 1, I had a good draw, which means I had all my colors, including a Voyaging Satyr which gave me access to all of my double colors. I kept control of the ground with Returned Phalanx and Keepsake Gorgon, and Gallium was stuck on 4 lands for a while. I thought things were looking good in Game 2. I flooded the ground with Centaurs, but he took to the skies with Harpies. Although I was able to Sip of Hemlock his Insatiable Harpy wearing a Thassa's Emissary, the life swing was too much for me to race against.

In the third game, I ended up in a situation with four lands--but no blue sources--with a grip full of blue cards. I cast Disciple of Phenax and he showed me Swamp, Island, Sip of Hemlock. I took the Island, hoping to color screw him--and I'll admit that I got greedy here--I wanted to take his Sip of Hemlock with my Psychic Intrusion down the line. This took me longer than I would have liked, as I didn't draw the blue source, and when I did cast Psychic Intrusion...

Gallium Swan Songed it. For some people, this might be a rage-tilt trigger. If fact, I had an opponent rage-tilt at me because I cast Stymied Hopes. "I can't believe you're playing that card." In this case, Swan Song started a dialogue between us. It was the ice breaker. Gallium noted how he loved the flavor of the card. I actually like the art a lot. In terms of game play, the 2/2 actually helped me a little against his horde of harpies. However, I was on my back foot the whole way. My greed with the Disciple earlier cost me as a Sip of Hemlock did 2 to me and I lost a flying blocker. When it finally looked like I had stabilized the board, at 1 life no less, Gallium dropped a Whip of Erebos. Even then, I had outs but didn't draw one and we chatted a bit more about our decks. Again, not ground-breaking interactions, but a pleasant experience given the MTGO standards.

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