To no one’s surprise, Eternal Masters did end up being quite sweet. The games are dominated by swingy, powerful cards, and you can find your gameplan changing drastically after you get wrecked by [card set=EMA]Void[/card] or when your only blocker is [card set=EMA]Memory Lapse[/card]d while you’re getting pecked away at by fliers.
COMBO ALERT!: When your opponent tells you that he managed to gain infinite life with [card set=EMA]Worldgorger Dragon[/card], [card set=EMA]Animate Dead[/card], and one of the Khan’s gain lands, you know something special is going on.
[cardimg set= EMA align=center]Worldgorger Dragon[/cardimg]
I got a chance to do my first three drafts this weekend at GP Columbus and would love to share some of my findings with you.
Deck 1 (2-0-1):
This is an archetype that I think is not obviously apparent to people at first glance through the set. There are several good sacrifice effects and the payoffs are plentiful in the form of recursion spells and morbid cards. This particular deck took a more aggro bent than I expected because I couldn’t find enough quality sacrifice enablers like [card set=EMA]Carrion Feeder[/card].
Echo and morbid make for a great understated synergy between red and black. [card set=EMA]Mogg War Marshal[/card], [card set=EMA]Stingscourger[/card], and [card set=EMA]Ghitu Slinger[/card] are all perfect for triggering your [card set=EMA]Wakedancer[/card] or [card set=EMA]Tragic Slip[/card] but still getting value first.
[cardimg set= EMA align=center]Avarax[/cardimg]
[card set=EMA]Borderland Marauder[/card] was quite good as a two mana three power attacker. Surprisingly, [card set=EMA]Avarax[/card] – aka the red [card set=EMA]Squadron Hawk[/card] – is actually not garbage because it’s a reasonably sized threat and it feels pretty good to search up another one. Along with [card set=EMA]Firebolt[/card], Avarax provides some badly needed red card advantage! Finally, [card set=EMA]Blood Artist[/card] and [card set=EMA]Malicious Affliction[/card] were both so good that they felt unfair. You should be first picking those cards.
Deck 3 (3-0):
This whole deck revolved around a late pick [card set=EMA]Braids, Cabal Minion[/card] and the two sweepers [card set=EMA]Nevinyrral’s Disk[/card] and [card set=EMA]Toxic Deluge[/card]. My opponents hated me after I would drop a [card set=EMA]Coalition Honor Guard[/card], followed by Braids and then a [card set=EMA]Sengir Autocrat[/card] to feed her. Braids is probably best suited for a RB sacrifice deck, but she works fine in WB because of sacrifice fodder like [card set=EMA]Raise the Alarm[/card] and Sengir Autocrat.
[cardimg set= EMA align=center]Braids, Cabal Minion[/cardimg]
When the deck wasn’t drawing Braids it was just a more controlling midrange deck that used spot removal and sweepers to bridge to the midgame where it would overwhelm other decks with card advantage. There’s just so much card advantage in Eternal Masters (do you know how bad it feels to have to watch your opponent [card set=EMA]Deep Analysis[/card]-ing and [card set=EMA]Fact or Fiction[/card]-ing?) that if your deck is not fast you HAVE to include ways to keep pace. Here, it was [card set=EMA]the Gravedigger[/card]s, [card set=EMA]Night’s Whisper[/card], [card set=EMA]Hymn to Tourach[/card], and the cantrip removal spells. [card set=EMA]Nausea[/card] was fantastic out of the board.
Deck 3 (3-0):
R/W Tokens and Goblins
This deck was amazing – it was one of those rare decks that just feels unbeatable. The R/W token synergy archetype is well-supported (there are lots of powerful enablers at common and payoffs at uncommon), but the rares [card set=EMA]Siege-Gang Commander[/card] and [card set=EMA]Goblin Trenches[/card] pushed it way over the top. [card set=EMA]Rally the Peasants[/card] is the real deal. I was happy to have two in my deck in addition to the [card set=EMA]Intangible Virtue[/card]. It wasn’t hard at all for the deck to create situations where 3 creatures would get through after a couple blocks and they’d take 9, facing a flashback the next turn. And often one of the tokens would trade up due to the temporary power boost from Rally.
[cardimg set= EMA align=center]Rally the Peasants[/cardimg]
I think [card set=EMA]Nausea[/card] is the most important sideboard card in the set. This particular deck was able to withstand a single hit from a sweeper (Void, Toxic Deluge, Nausea) and still bounce back with another 4-5 creatures on the board. Nevertheless, Nausea is critical to have any shot at beating a nut draw from a deck like this.
I hope you get a chance to draft this format at least once. It feels so right to be playing with [card set=EMA]Counterspell[/card] and [card set=EMA]Chain Lightning[/card] again!