It’s been a while since I last posted a slew of misplays and mistakes, and it certainly hasn’t been due to a lack of making them!
I’ve got three solid bombs to drop on this edition of “I’m a Bad Magic Player.”
1. Hey Look, it’s Bigger
This has to be the most common type of mistake I commit: failing to notice and recognize another card on the table that affects the game state. In this case, it was Honor of the Pure. I was playing my UR fetters deck at a local store against a red-white human deck. It was around turn 5 and my opponent had Mirran Crusader out in play, and I had a hand full of good ways to deal with it.
I first played a Phantasmal Image so I could have a Crusader too, to which my opponent said “okay that’s fine” with a rather unhappy tone in his voice. Then I threw a Pillar of Flame at the original Crusader, confident that I was bringing the game around in my favor. My opponent said the same thing, “okay that’s fine!” but with much more vigor and did nothing. I reiterated that I had “done 2” to the crusader, and my opponent looked at me with a big smile, and said, “okay…” I was legitimately confused about why he hadn’t yet exiled the creature. I thought to myself, “does he not realize the awesome power of Pillar of Flame and recognized the epicness of my play?” He picked up the Honor of the Pure that was off to the side – in a reasonably noticeable area, just not for me because, well, I’m a Bad Magic Player – to show me. “It’s a 3/3.”
FACEPALM! I passed the turn, and my opponent happily cast a Sword of War and Peace, equipped his 3/3 crusader, and swung at me for 18 damage and game 1. At that point I could do nothing since I only had one untapped land and nothing I could play with it. Had I not been stupid and played right, I would have just passed the turn with my Mana Leak and Disperse in hand and played the reactive game for a turn or two. Nope.
2. Snapping My Neck
Last night I was playing my Grixis Fetters deck against Kessig Wolf Run Black. It was a really long game with an awkward planeswalker battle between my Tamiyo, the Moon Sage and my opponent’s Liliana of the Veil where basically it was who could get to their ultimate first. My opponent finally topdecked a Wurmcoil Engine and set it in play. I needed a sweet rip, and it ended up being pretty good – a Snapcaster Mage. My graveyard was packed full of goodness, but I knew already what I wanted. I passed the turn and waited for my opponent to activate Liliana to force us to discard. I flashed out the Snapcaster, and “snap” named Go for the Throat. For a second there I had mixed up two commonly played cards – simplifying it all in my head, I had convinced myself that Go for the Throat killed artifact creatures and Doom Blade killed black creatures (along with the rest of the format, of course).
I reached in the bin to take out the Go for the Throat and started praying for a Slagstorm topdeck to handle the wurm tokens. But it wouldn’t matter. Super fail…Go for the Throat = destroy target NONARTIFACT creature. “Put that one in your blog,” my opponent said, as I began scooping up my cards.
3. A Good Defense is made out of a Good Offense
This one is pretty quick, and while I didn’t lose the game, it still is a notable misplay. In a different match in the same tournament as the Go for the Throat incident, my opponent had a Steel Hellkite in play. I made a copy for myself with Phantasmal Image, and then hit his with Ancient Grudge. I passed the turn, and my opponent activated his Slayers’ Stronghold targeting my Image. Yep, that land targets any creature, and was used quite nicely to take care of my faux Steel Hellkite for essentially 3 mana. Seems good. Luckily my whole gameplan didn’t revolve around that play; I just figured it would be a convenient way to get rid of the Oblivion Ring exiling my Karn Liberated.
Well that’s all the misplays for now.
If you’re in the Detroit Metropolitan Area I play Standard at Warriors III in Wayne on Thursdays and Fun 4 All Comics & Games on Saturday afternoons if you’re interested in seeing my grossly bad playing in person. I always have BadMagicPlayer.com t-shirts with me, and if you tell me one of your worst misplays you’ll get a $5 discount ! ($15 each)
COMING NEXT WEEK: My Interview with Vintage World Champ Mark Hornung