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Quentin's commentary on a draft by Limited guru Rich Hoaen highlights the role that color preferences play in Draft.

Drafting with Rich and Quentin

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The letter I! have a special guest with us this week. I am still stuck in Asia and cannot draft, so I have asked Limited genius Richard Hoaen to provide us with one of his own. This is from an 8-4 queue, and it presents us with some interesting decisions. Rich's stye of drafting is very similar to my own, but we differ when it comes to favourite colour combinations, as becomes evident in this draft. I will be looking at how this colour preference would've caused two completely different decks to be drafted, both of which were very strong in their own right.

Pack 1, Pick 1

Pack 1 -- Click to enlarge Goblin Skycutter, Crookclaw Transmuter, Strength in Numbers, Zealot il-Vec, Urborg Syphon-Mage, Screeching Sliver, Momentary Blink, Ancient Grudge, Greenseeker, Foriysian Interceptor, Faceless Devourer, Foriysian Totem, Haunting Hymn, Lim-Dûl the Necromancer, Fire Whip

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 2

Errant Ephemeron, Strangling Soot, Gemhide Sliver, Mindstab, Gaze of Justice, Wormwood Dryad, Mystical Teachings, Two-Headed Sliver, Prismatic Lens, Clockspinning, Stormcloud Djinn, Volcanic Awakening, Thick-Skinned Goblin, Wall of Roots

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 3

Coal Stoker, Durkwood Baloth, Coral Trickster, Ivory Giant, Deathspore Thallid, Sidewinder Sliver, Viscid Lemures, Mwonvuli Acid-Moss, Two-Headed Sliver, Brine Elemental, Assembly-Worker, Celestial Crusader, Evil Eye of Orms-by-Gore

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 4

Temporal Isolation, Empty the Warrens, Strength in Numbers, Errant Doomsayers, Foriysian Interceptor, Aetherflame Wall, Detainment Spell, Thallid Shell-Dweller, Bewilder, Vampiric Sliver, Haunting Hymn, Evil Eye of Orms-by-Gore

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 5

Temporal Eddy, Mogg War Marshal, Drudge Reavers, Screeching Sliver, Psychotic Episode, Jedit's Dragoons, Sprout, Basalt Gargoyle, Dreadship Reef, Auratog, Ophidian Eye

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 6

Flowstone Channeler, Trespasser il-Vec, Blazing Blade Askari, Shadow Sliver, Ophidian Eye, Watcher Sliver, Thrill of the Hunt, Barbed Shocker, Return to Dust, Forest

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 7

Tolarian Sentinel, Benalish Cavalry, Clockspinning, Bogardan Rager, Sangrophage, D'Avenant Healer, Aspect of Mongoose, Quilled Sliver, Ghostflame Sliver

Click here.

Pack 1, Pick 8

Ironclaw Buzzardiers, Call to the Netherworld, Cyclopean Giant, Brass Gnat, Savage Thallid, Opaline Sliver, Krosan Grip, Grinning Totem

Rich's Pick: Grinning Totem
Q's Pick: Ironclaw Buzzardiers

Pack 1, Pick 9

Zealot il-Vec, Screeching Sliver, Ancient Grudge, Greenseeker, Foriysian Interceptor, Foriysian Totem, Haunting Hymn

Pick: Foriysian Totem

Pack 1, Pick 10

Gaze of Justice, Wormwood Dryad, Two-Headed Sliver, Clockspinning, Volcanic Awakening, Thick-Skinned Goblin

Pick: Thick-Skinned Goblin

Pack 1, Pick 11

Sidewinder Sliver, Viscid Lemures, Mwonvuli Acid-Moss, Assembly-Worker, Evil Eye of Orms-by-Gore

Pick: Evil Eye of Orms-by-Gore

Pack 1, Pick 12

Foriysian Interceptor, Aetherflame Wall, Detainment Spell, Bewilder

Pick: Aetherflame Wall

Pack 1, Pick 13

Drudge Reavers, Screeching Sliver, Auratog

Pick: Drudge Reavers

Pack 1, Pick 14

Shadow Sliver, Barbed Shocker

Pick: Barbed Shocker

Pack 1, Pick 15

Sangrophage

The late-pick Foriysian Totem was a steal, as well as the Thick-Skinned Goblin. Both decks are shaping up nicely, with good mana curves. Rich has more removal so far in Soot, but for now we have nothing either of us need to scrabble for, and we can just take it as it comes, although it would be nice to pick up some more removal for my deck. I'm aware that for my deck, the next few picks will be distorted because Rich passed the blue cards, but we passed very little blue after the first few cards, so it should work out well.

Pack 2, Pick 1

Pack 2 -- Click to enlarge Erratic Mutation, Cradle to Grave, Reflex Sliver, Blightspeaker, Aquamorph Entity, Evolution Charm, Pallid Mycoderm, Brain Gorgers, Rathi Trapper, Primal Plasma, Skirk Shaman, Aether Membrane, Kavu Predator, Hedge Troll, Aeon Chronicler

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 2

Saltfield Recluse, Veiling Oddity, Midnight Charm, Shaper Parasite, Battering Sliver, Reality Acid, Blightspeaker, Evolution Charm, Vampiric Link, Gossamer Phantasm, Prodigal Pyromancer, Big Game Hunter, Keen Sense, Roiling Horror

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 3

Stingscourger, Synchronous Sliver, Utopia Vow, Wistful Thinking, Dash Hopes, Reality Acid, Pallid Mycoderm, Prodigal Pyromancer, Vampiric Link, Piracy Charm, Sulfur Elemental, Riftmarked Knight, Null Profusion

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 4

Ridged Kusite, Saltfield Recluse, Needlepeak Spider, Poultice Sliver, Firefright Mage, Blightspeaker, Ghost Tactician, Brute Force, Seal of Primordium, Dismal Failure, Life and Limb, Dismal Failure

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 5

Dawn Charm, Spitting Sliver, Aven Riftwatcher, Keldon Marauders, Dust Corona, Uktabi Drake, Essence Warden, Gossamer Phantasm, Venarian Glimmer, Treacherous Urge, Temporal Extortion

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 6

Utopia Vow, Shade of Trokair, Fury Charm, Vitaspore Thallid, Deadly Grub, Aquamorph Entity, Seal of Primordium, Mana Tithe, Rathi Trapper, Psychotrope Thallid

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 7

Dreamscape Artist, Fury Charm, Reality Acid, Deadly Grub, Melancholy, Gossamer Phantasm, Hammerheim Deadeye, Mycologist, Radha, Heir to Keld

Click here.

Pack 2, Pick 8

Ridged Kusite, Dawn Charm, Brain Gorgers, Keldon Marauders, Ghost Tactician, Fa'adiyah Seer, Revered Dead, Sophic Centaur

Rich's Pick: Brain Gorgers
Q's Pick: Dawn Charm

Pack 2, Pick 9

Reflex Sliver, Blightspeaker, Aquamorph Entity, Evolution Charm, Pallid Mycoderm, Brain Gorgers, Aether Membrane

Rich's Pick: Blightspeaker
Q's Pick: Aether Membrane

Pack 2, Pick 10

Midnight Charm, Reality Acid, Blightspeaker, Vampiric Link, Gossamer Phantasm, Roiling Horror

Rich's Pick: Blightspeaker
Q's Pick: Midnight Charm

Pack 2, Pick 11

Wistful Thinking, Dash Hopes, Reality Acid, Pallid Mycoderm, Vampiric Link

Rich's Pick: Vampiric Link
Q's Pick: Reality Acid

Pack 2, Pick 12

Ridged Kusite, Firefright Mage, Ghost Tactician, Seal of Primordium

Pick: Ridged Kusite

Pack 2, Pick 13

Keldon Marauders, Dust Corona, Temporal Extortion

Pick: Temporal Extortion

Pack 2, Pick 14

Deadly Grub, Seal of Primordium

Pick: Deadly Grub

Pack 2, Pick 15

Reality Acid

The second pack, as expected, didn't deliver too much stuff for my deck, but I still picked up plenty of playables; enough to stabalise the early game with the Dreamscape Artist, Aether Membrane and Aquamorph Entity and some removal and Aeon Chronicler to hold the fort later on. I am still looking for removal.

Rich was gifted with a very late Rebel chain and matches my Aeon Chronicler with his Null Profusion. Both decks are still on a surprisingly level footing. Rich's deck is very evenly spread and has the luxury of just picking the best card each time in Future Sight, as it has no holes to fill.

Pack 3, Pick 1

Pack 3 -- Click to enlarge Cutthroat il-Dal, Gift of Granite, Quiet Disrepair, Foresee, Rift Elemental, Nessian Courser, Grave Scrabbler, Henchfiend of Ukor, Whip-Spine Drake, Lymph Sliver, Homing Sliver, Char-Rumbler, Llanowar Mentor, Sword of the Meek, Magus of the Vineyard

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 2

Augur il-Vec, Llanowar Empath, Grave Peril, Marshaling Cry, Kavu Primarch, Foresee, Sporoloth Ancient, Grave Scrabbler, Lumithread Field, Mesmeric Sliver, Deepcavern Imp, Spirit en-Dal, Cryptic Annelid, Pooling Venom

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 3

Llanowar Empath, Marshaling Cry, Unblinking Bleb, Lost Hours, Wrap in Vigor, Mass of Ghouls, Lucent Liminid, Thornweald Archer, Flowstone Embrace, Dryad Arbor, Bonded Fetch, Snake Cult Initiation, Cloud Key

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 4

Saltskitter, Unblinking Bleb, Llanowar Augur, Venser's Diffusion, Deepcavern Imp, Fomori Nomad, Logic Knot, Lucent Liminid, Vedalken Aethermage, Virulent Sliver, Haze of Rage, Riftsweeper

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 5

Emberwilde Augur, Putrid Cyclops, Augur il-Vec, Petrified Plating, Flowstone Embrace, Sarcomite Myr, Death Rattle, Homing Sliver, Keldon Megaliths, Sparkspitter, Riftsweeper

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 6

Petrified Plating, Leaden Fists, Quiet Disrepair, Blind Phantasm, Lumithread Field, Grinning Ignus, Edge of Autumn, Delay, Festering March, Soultether Golem

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 7

Lost Hours, Frenzy Sliver, Mesmeric Sliver, Patrician's Scorn, Sarcomite Myr, Henchfiend of Ukor, Thornweald Archer, Skizzik Surger, Chronomantic Escape

Click here.

Pack 3, Pick 8

Oblivion Crown, Emberwilde Augur, Fatal Attraction, Frenzy Sliver, Patrician's Scorn, Minions' Murmurs, Tolaria West, Pyromancer's Swath

Pick: Fatal Attraction

Pack 3, Pick 9

Cutthroat il-Dal, Quiet Disrepair, Rift Elemental, Lymph Sliver, Homing Sliver, Char-Rumbler, Llanowar Mentor

Rich's Pick: Cutthroat il-Dal 
Q's Pick: Homing Sliver

Pack 3, Pick 10

Augur il-Vec, Llanowar Empath, Grave Peril, Lumithread Field, Mesmeric Sliver, Pooling Venom

Pick: Llanowar Empath

Pack 3, Pick 11

Lost Hours, Wrap in Vigor, Mass of Ghouls, Dryad Arbor, Cloud Key

Rich's Pick: Mass of Ghouls
Q's Pick: Wrap in Vigor

Pack 3, Pick 12

Saltskitter, Llanowar Augur, Vedalken Aethermage, Haze of Rage

Pick: Vedalken Aethermage

Pack 3, Pick 13

Putrid Cyclops, Sarcomite Myr, Homing Sliver

Pick: Homing Sliver

Pack 3, Pick 14

Petrified Plating, Soultether Golem

Pick: Soultether Golem

Pack 3, Pick 15

Lost Hours

Future Sight, as it has a tendency to do, rounded both of our decks off nicely. Rich picked up three removal spells and two of the hard-hitting Henchfiends. I snapped up three removal spells of my own and two great card advantage spells.


It's difficult to say which deck wound up being better. Rich's is very solid, with a healthy Rebel chain providing both removal and the card advantage his deck needs. However, he has no bombs other than Null Profusion. My deck is far more bomb-heavy with Aeon Chronicler, Errant Ephemeron and Brine Elemental, but I feel it gains its edge over Rich's version because it has more card advantage. I feel especially happy given that Rich passed all the blue cards left in the first pack, and so my part of the draft was slightly distorted—and hence the deck would've been better if this were not so.

It shoud be noted that Rich didn't play the Ghostflame Sliver in the end, as the Rebels provided him with enough two-drops, and the Thick-Skinned Goblin is better because he has two echo creatures.

Which deck do you guys think worked out stronger and which way would you have drafted it? There was easily an option for going white after the Temporal Isolation, although the deck probably wouldn't have been as strong as either of these two. Voice your thoughts and opinions in the forums.

Q

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