Saturday, 3 October 2009

Zendikar Release event - Leeds, 3rd October

By Jim Marlow

Hey everyone,

The zendikar release has now come and gone. Unsurprisingly, or not considering the amount of boosters cracked, no priceless treasures were found in Leeds today, but i would love to hear if anyone finds any in the future.

Also, it was great to hear that local trader, Mark Hammond ( sold out of Zendikar booster boxes, despite the more modest turn out of 19 players, which it has to be said was around expected.

The release, as i'v said was 5 fun filled rounds of sealed for the 19 of us who turned up. Here's my deck from the event.

1 x vampire lacerator
1 x guul draz vampire
1 x bloodgast
1 x gatekeeper of malakir
1 x vampire nighthawk
1 x vampire hexmage
1 x mold shambler
1 x kor skyfisher
1 x surrakar maurauder
1 x territorial baloth
1 x timbermaw larva
1 x zendikar farguide
1 x oran-rief recluse

1 x harrow
1 x khalni expedition
2 x journey to nowhere
1 x blazing torch
2 x vines of vastwood
1 x soul stair expedition
1 x hideous end

3 x plains
9 x swamp
6 x forest

I didnt think too much of my deck, certainly not after i thought i had a reasonably deck at the prerelease which only took me to 2/3 before dropping. However, this deck was capable of aggresive draws, and certainly had the removal and some larger creatures to power through longer games, especially with the all star kor skyfisher on the splash (best guy ever!!)

Round 1 - Rob Catton

I can remember the games too well because this was one of many g/b mirrors i played, so this must mean either the black and green are very deep in zendikar or some people misbuilt their pools, although in Rob's case i would suggest the former. We both saw turn 1 lacerators in game 1, which i managed to sneak through some nice draws.

In Game 2 i basically lost to vampire nighthawk being an absolute shitkicking. The tempo swings this guy gives in the race is sick.

In game 3 we traded resources much like the third, and again rob found the nighthawk....but i had him down to precarious life. Luckily for me, i managed to draw a 1 outer in the form of blazing torch.....who knew it meant vampires couldnt block the equipped creature!

1-0 (2-1)

Round 2 - Andy Devine

Andy was playing a similar deck to mine, G/B with a white splash (i really dont know what for) Andy is also a pretty good player, and having dodged a bullet by beating Rob Catton i wasnt happy with this pairing.....especially considering the table 1 pairing (ill let you know weds if you have forgotten)

Game 1 andy was stuck on 3 lands after a horrible mull to 5 on the play, one of which i mold shambler'd before andy drew another land. A few spells for andy meant he stayed alive a turn or 2 but it wasnt to be.

Game 2 - Andy this time went to 6, and again got stuck on 2 lands. This time i had a more aggresive draw, and i think river boa was the only spell Andy played all game. This game really highlighted the power of bloodghast to me, as i was attacking in to the river boa, forcing andy to tap a land, and take beats from my deathtouch scorpion, and then i could just play a land and get my bloodghast back, eventually i drew the hideous end and managed to off the snake, sick!

Sorry Andy, would have really loved a game, but ill take wins when they're there to be had. Also, dodging another bullet seems awesome, c'mon bad player in round 3.

2-0 (4-1)

Round 3 - Steve Tyson

Another really decent limited player, someone i consider to be the dark horse of Leeds, because he is always there or there abouts in the drafts, and has in the short time he has been part of the Leeds group risen fast to be at the heels of the pro(s).

I really cant distinguish between games in this match, because they were all incredibly close. Steve was again in green and black, with the usual low cost aggresive black creatures backed up by a barrage of fat green men...who get fatter with land.

The one moment i remember was in game 3, im on the draw and steve has played a turn 1 vampire lacerator and turn 2 guul draz vampire, with the life totals 20-9 in steve's favour (yeah, im in the shit!).

I have 1 plains, 2 forests and a swamp. I play kor skyfisher, bouncing the plains, replay the plains and journey to nowhere the guul draz guy, leaving me with 3 cards in hand to steves 2. Steve attacks and i block, prompting disfigure, but i have the one forest up for the vines of vastwood, and steve doesn't have another creature. I soon found out he drew loads of land after that, and i unleash the beasts in hand for the WWWWWinnn

I dont mean this as a trumpet blowing excercise, i think the cards i had are sick in limited, sick. I mean im no mathematician, but doesnt kor skyfisher + journey to nowhere x vines of vastwood = human ejaculate....., no?

3-0 (6-2)

Round 4 - Mick Edwards

Well, after 3 decent players i finally get to play someone awful. Obviously its awesome to have me and mick at the higher end of things, with Fu not far behind, so we were all going to be in the mix for the top slots.

Again, another nail biting race, this time falling in micks favour to his, again, g/b deck with a subtle allies theme, nicely including the turntimber ranger, who it seems is quite the scrotum bashing.

This was probably the closest of all the matches i played today, with both of us with having landwalking with creatures, although sadly mine put micks on a three turn clock and his put me on 2. The board developed and some trades ensued, culminating in me needing (but failing) to draw one of 2 copies of vines of vastwood to forestwalk for the win.

Ah well.

3-1 (7-4)

Round 5 - Steve Parker

I only remember playing steve at a prerelease, i think for shadowmoor or eventide (whichever one has demigod) where he beat me in round i wasnt really excited about this.

Game 1 - i managed to get a decent aggresive draw, which was slowed somewhat by the baloth cage trap, but luckily i had the journey to nowhere to the token and managed to get enough throug for the win.

Game 2 - I wasnt exactly sure what steve was playing because he hadnt played a massive amount of spells, but he certainly appeared to have some hot green and blue spells, with some decent mana fixing to compliment. In this game i was all but dead to the +4/+4 and trample landfall guy, combined with fetchland. I managed to stack up a 3 for 1 to eventually kill it, and then managed to get in weenie beats with bloodghast while hoping steve didnt draw a creature.......he did, but i had gatekeeper of malakir by this point.

4-1 (9-4)

Apologies if i have missed anything out, most or all of these reports are probably some figment of my imagination as i failed once again to bring a pad and pen to the event. Also, im afraid the quality of my opponants demanded some level of concentration from me, which meant i had less time to remind myself to write about this moment later.

Either way, i came 2nd behind Mick for the release. I opened my boosters but i have them saved to build a sealed pool with when i get to 6, as they might be relevent for the upcoming PTQ season.

In other news, i did a draft afterwards, passed a p1,p1 warren instigator in favour of a vampire nighthawk....passing hideous end also. Turns out the guy to my left took the end and cut me in pack 2 despite me cutting hard pack 1 (trips crypt ripper). I then open Marsh flats (slam amirite) and a goddamn foil vampire that goes right to craig, who is also in black....yay!

i get bashed by craig round 1, the end! least i have my warren instigater?

See you all on wednesday, where it will be Zendikar draft, and i will be 21 years old!

Untill then,


As always, feel free to comment on this article, or anything related or unrelated to magic whatsoever. If you would like to contribute to the TLM blog, please email any pictures, ideas or articles to


  1. Nice work Jimmy Boy. That's a pretty gruelling gauntlet of gadabouts you faced! M Bison will be drafting this week though, so look out :)

  2. apologies to Mark hammond...his website is actually, not as advertised.