Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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Oct 2019

I like Wikis (probably because a previous employer used them a lot) so in 2005, I got an account at PBWiki (now PBWorks) which let you set up your own Wiki. Unfortunately, I never did end up using it for anything significant, and every couple of years they have to warn me they’re going to delete it, so I figured I’d just get the content off of it and let it die.

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Posted by at /  mtg  magic the gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 3380 words

Sep 2019

Magic Arena’s community was in an uproar this past weekend over the latest state of the beta, mostly over the announced plans for Arena’s eternal Historic format that will become relevant with the coming rotation. It’s likely that Wizards will backpedal in some way in response to the community, but here are my thoughts for now: Historic cards to cost double wildcards to craft This is the universally-reviled bit and has been the target of much outrage, accursing Wizards of being greedy etc.

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Posted by at /  ccgs  Magic the Gathering  Gaming / Syndicated: / 0 / 1273 words

Aug 2019

Should I still write tournament reports even though I did poorly? Spoilers, but the answer is that has never stopped me before! In today’s installment of “I thought you were quitting paper Magic?”, I attended an MCQ yesterday for MC Richmond. The format was Modern constructed. I initially wasn’t planning to play because (a) the entrance fee was kind of ridiculous; (b) modern is a bit of an unbalanced debacle right now because of Hogaak; and (c ) my one assembled Modern deck (Grixis Death Shadow) hasn’t been used since 2017, and was completely absent in the meta for the recent MC Barcelona.

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Posted by at /  magic the gathering  modern / Syndicated: / 1 0 / 1680 words

Jul 2019

Grand Prix / MagicFest Seattle Photo Dump: I wasn’t actually planning to play much competitive Magic this year, at least not on paper, but when the family planned a US trip in June, I figured I’d take a short side trip to attend and experience a US GP. I had the choices of Washington DC on the 14th-16th (Limited), Seattle on 20th-23rd (Limited), or Dallas on 28th-30th (Modern). After some wrangling with the family’s schedule, Seattle was the one most convenient to go to, and Limited meant I didn’t have to try and put together a decent deck.

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Posted by at /  grand prix  limited  magic the gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 2442 words

May 2019

Damn, that was a grind. But it felt super rewarding especially as a free-to-play player since the closed beta, always struggling for wildcards to build the decks. I had never tried going for Mythic beyond the first month, when I realized what a grind it was. This standard format was also pretty dynamic, which meant the best deck changed constantly, so it was hard to be successful by sticking to one deck, which meant a lot of WCs are needed to be able to shift with the meta.

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Now that I’m playing MTG again regularly on MTG Arena, maybe I’ll start writing a bit more Magic stuff. With War of the Spark now out and the metagame not yet established, I thought I’d be foolish and waste my wildcards on some brewing. As a reminder, I’m still an F2P player on Arena, so wildcards are precious and few lol. I did have some 50k in gold and a few gems saved up when War of the Spark hit, so i have already played a few sealeds (only 1 got to 7 wins) and opened quite a few packs.

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Apr 2019

Two endgames to discuss in one post! MTG War of the Spark and Avengers Endgame spoilers ahoy! Endgame #1: War of the Spark The latest Magic set has been a home run in terms of lore and flavor and storytelling, bringing the last three years worth of MTG lore to its conclusion as the villainous dragon planeswalker Nicol Bolas aims to complete his plan to achieve omnipotence over the multiverse. The set is packed with planeswalkers summoned to Ravnica by Bolas’s schemes, which means mechanically that a lot of new planeswalker design space is being explored.

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Posted by at /  Pop Culture  Magic the Gathering  Movies / Syndicated: / 0 / 624 words

Dec 2018

I’ve been playing MTG Arena for a good while now, a little bit during the closed beta, and now I think we’re still in open beta (?) because things still keep changing around. But I figured I could put in a little commentary about how this thing is going so far. I’m coming off the POV of a long-time Magic the Gathering player of course, with a little bit of comparison to Eternal and Hearthstone, the two digital CCGs I’m most familiar with.

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Posted by at /  ccgs  Magic the Gathering  Gaming / Syndicated: / 2 / 1788 words

Jun 2018

I had an out of country trip last weekend to Kuala Lumpur to play Magic, but I was a bit tempted to not write about it all. The reason being that inevitably after one of these MTG-related trips the first thing people ask me is “Nanalo ka ba?” (Did you win?) and this time, the answer was sadly no. (Let’s get the spoilers out of the way early shall we.) However, I realized that not all stories have to have happy endings.

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Dec 2017

I had booked the Singapore trip earlier in the year, since I almost always attend Grand Prixs in Singapore as its an easy trip and gives a good opportunity to visit friends. Unfortunately, I ended up not having time to prepare for the tournament itself. Fortunately, it was a limited event rather than constructed, so I figured maybe I could wing it and still do well. (Spoiler: I could not.)

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Jun 2017

I don’t really play Magic regularly anymore; Last year I only played Standard because I was Q’ed for the WMCQs. But when there’s a local Grand Prix, oldies like me crawl out of the woodwork and try to believe we can still do well in a tournament with minimal prep. Grand Prix Manila 2017 was to be Standard format, held on June 2-4, 2017, at the SMX convention center. At the start of the year I already knew I would be playing in this year’s GP Manila, but since I hadn’t played Standard for well over a year, I didn’t really know what I would be playing.

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Aug 2015

I was sent to London for work for a few months, which meant an opportunity to play a third GP for the year after Manila back in January and Singapore back in June. This will be the most GP events I’ve played in a one year period. I didn’t have time to practice, so I went with an updated version of the Jeskai tempo deck I was playing at the start of Khans rotation.

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Jun 2015

GP Singapore 2015 would be my first Modern GP and maybe only my 3rd or 4th Modern event altogether. Modern is a difficult format to prepare for; there are many decks to prepare for and it’s almost impossible to master all the matchups. For this reason, I felt much less prepared for this event than for GP Manila back in January. I put together Grixis Twin for this event. It’s a bit difficult to pilot, but I felt it had a reasonable matchup across the board and there’s always a chance of comboing out when you’re falling behind.

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Feb 2015

One of my many, many loyal blog readers pointed out to me that I had yet to post about Grand Prix Manila, which took place in the first week of this year. I’ve been meaning to post about it, but it got lost in my backlog. So here we are. Yes indeed, I still play Magic, “on and off”, as it happens with most Magic players with busy lives and/or multiple other hobbies.

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Jun 2012

Last weekend was Grand Prix Manila 2012, held at the SMX at Mall of Asia. I don’t really consider myself a “regular” Magic player anymore so I’m not going to give a full tournament report, though I will record some details for posterity. Let’s start with the deck. I played some version of Naya Pod, limited by what cards were available as usual: A Pile of Naya [Creatures] 4 Birds of Paradise 3 Avacyn Pilgrim 1 Ulvenwald Tracker 4 Strangeleroot Geist 2 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben 1 Daybreak Ranger 2 Borderland Ranger 2 Blade Splicer 2 Fiend Hunter 2 Wolfir Avenger 1 Phyrexian Metamorph 2 Hero of Bladehold 2 Huntmaster of the Fells 3 Restoration Angel 1 Oxida Scrapmelter 1 Acidic Slime [Spells] 2 Birthing Pod 1 Bonfire of the Damned [Lands] 4 Copperline Gorge 4 Razorverge Thicket 3 Sunpetal Grove 2 Rootbound Crag 2 Gavony Township 1 Slayer Stronghold 2 Cavern of Souls 4 Forest 1 Mountain 1 Plains [Sideboard] 1 Ancient Grudge 2 Ray of Revelation 1 Zealous Conscripts 2 Garruk Relentless 2 Celestial Purge 3 Thunderbolt 2 Arc Trail 1 Surgical Extraction 1 Oblivion Ring

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Jun 2011

Haven’t done a tournament report in a while. Heck, I haven’t really played tournament Magic in a while, not seriously at least. For that reason it may have been a bad idea to run with a deck that requires a lot of matchup knowledge to play. The tournament was Grand Prix Singapore 2011, the format was standard and my weapon of choice was Caw Blade: [Lands] 4 Island 3 Plains 4 Celestial Colonnade 4 Glacial Fortress 1 Inkmoth Nexus 1 Marsh Flats 1 Scalding Tarn 4 Seachrome Coast 4 Tectonic Edge [Creatures] 4 Stoneforge Mystic 4 Squadron Hawk 2 Mirran Crusader [Spells] 4 Preordain 4 Spell Pierce 3 Mana Leak 3 Into the Roil 2 Condemn 1 Sword of Feast and Famine 1 Sword of War and Peace 1 Batterskull 1 Jace Beleren 4 Jace the Mind Sculptor [Sideboard] 1 Sword of Body and Mind 1 Sylvok Lifestaff 2 Spellskite 3 Flashfreeze 2 Divine Offering 2 Celestial Purge 2 Day of Judgment 2 Dismember

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Sep 2010

I haven’t written a tournament report in a while (maybe because I’ve been playing rather poorly lately? =/), but Prereleases are always fun right? Here’s my Scars of Mirrodin prerelease report! The first hour was spent waiting in an unbearably hot basement area for the 8th player on our table to register his sealed pool. What? yeah, he was late, and the event started early so the airconditioning was not yet on.

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Aug 2010

Here’s the situation: It’s game 3 of a sealed game. You know your opponent has Mind Control, Aether Adept and Plummet still in his deck, so you should finish it quickly to avoid losing to topdecks. The field is as shown (click for larger view): If you Stampede and swing with everyone, you win! Unless he has Condemn, in which case you will lose. You never saw Condemn in previous games.

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Posted by at /  Limited  m11  sealed  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 3 / 103 words

May 2010

Apr 2010

Just a quick dump of my impressions of RoE limited from the prerelease. I’ll probably post a more detailed analysis later. The RoE limited format is fun and it is slower than Zendikar, but you still need to keep an eye on your curve (even though that curve may now end with 7-8-9-and up instead of 5-6… ). Lots of ground stalls, so guys with evasion are much more valuable.

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Posted by at /  Limited  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 273 words
I played in the Rise of Eldrazi Prerelease Event yesterday at Eton Cyberpod in the Ortigas area. It was a new mall, so I went there a bit before opening time in case I had trouble finding the venue. Turns out that wouldn’t be a problem as there were a bunch of Magic players outside the mall waiting for it to open when I got there. It turns out that the mall had recently changed it’s opening hours from 10 AM to 11 AM though, so we all had to wait outside in the heat for an additional hour before we could start the event.

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Posted by at /  Limited  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 980 words
I chose to start MTG blogging again right in the middle of spoiler season for the upcoming set Rise of the Eldrazi, so let me start out by reviewing some new cards. Let’s take a look at the card previewed in this week’s The Week That Was by Brian David-Marshall, Inquisition of Kozilek: Nobody expected the Kozilek inquisition! BDM of course already pointed out the obvious comparisons to Thoughtseize, which is the premier pinpoint discard spell at this mana point; Thoughtseize has the advantage in versatility (can get any card) versus the slight drawback of giving up 2 points of life.

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Posted by at /  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 513 words
I’m a long-time Magic player from the Philippines. I used to blog at my personal website, but I had this domain so I just decided to use it. My magic blogging used to consist mostly of tournament reports (I like to play both limited and constructed). For this blog, I’d like to write more design/card analysis and about events in the Magic community. Most of online Magic community writing is geared towards an American/western audience, so I’d also like to write stuff relevant to the Asian magic scene if I get the chance.

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Dec 2009

Now, this is a bit awkward. One of the side projects that’s been in my backlog for a long time has been to work on an improved version of the MTGO Draft Converter at zizibaloob. I thought I would get started on that today, and in fact already had quite a bit of javascript done for the draft widget when I read a new post by Brian David-Marshall over on top8magic and found out that there was already a new draft recorder website: RareDraft.

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Posted by at /  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 224 words

Oct 2009

I was able to chain a sealed event into a number of drafts this weekend. Here’s one of my better drafts:   Pack 1 pick 1:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 2:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 3:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 4:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 5:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 6:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 7:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 8:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 9:

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The following are M10 sealed: Friday Oct 9, 8am Sunday Oct 11, 10pm Friday, Oct 16 6am Sunday, Oct 18 8pm The following are Zendikar sealed: Monday, Nov 9, 1am Friday, Nov 13, 8am Monday, Nov 16, 3am Sunday, Nov 22, 11pm Friday, Nov 27 7am Saturday, Nov 28, 8am Sunday, Nov 29, 9pm Friday, Dec 4, 8am Monday, Dec 6, 1am Monday, Dec 20, 3am Friday, Dec 25, 7am Monday, Dec 27, 3am Good luck to all Pinoys playing in the MTGO PTQs!

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Posted by at /  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 0 / 84 words
Want to post decklists online to tweet to your friends? You can use the Decklist Sharing Tool! As an example, here’s a recent decklist posted to twitter by Evan Erwin that I converted using the tool: I wish I had more decklists to share, but to be honest, I haven’t thought much about Zendikar standard yet =p

Sep 2009

As you might have heard, there was a helluva storm in the Philippines yesterday, and I was pretty much stuck at the Titan Hobby Shop for most of the day. Luckily, that meant I get to play in the Zendikar prerelease. My Zendikar prerelease record: 1-3 =/ I had a decent pool and went with a UW build, but I played too loosely and the stars just weren’t aligned. My pool was very bad value-wise as well, having mostly “nice” rares like Lullmage Mentor and Lorthos, the Tidemaker.

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Wanted to try out draft recording, the same method that pinoyraredrafter uses. The below is an ACR draft I tried this morning. I think the deck was decent, although I made a number of questionable picks. I don’t have match stories to go along though, I got mana screwed in game 1 then lost a nailbiter in game 3.   Pack 1 pick 1:   My Pick:   Pack 1 pick 2:   My Pick:

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Aug 2009

Grand Prix Bangkok happens three weekends from now, and I’ve already booked the flight and hotel. All I need now are byes! The fourth GPT here was yesterday, Sunday Aug 2 at Robinson’s Galleria. The format is M10 Sealed and I found myself faced with the following sealed pool: White 1 Blinding Mage 1 Divine Verdict 1 Elite Vanguard 1 Harm's Way 1 Lifelink 2 Palace Guard 1 Righteousness 1 Safe Passage 1 Serra Angel 1 Silence 1 Veteran Armorsmith 2 Veteran Swordsmith 1 Wall of Faith 1 White Knight Blue 1 Air Elemental 1 Cancel 1 Convincing Mirage 1 Horned Turtle 1 Ice Cage 1 Merfolk Looter 1 Negate 2 Ponder 2 Sage Owl 1 Snapping Drake 1 Traumatize 1 Zephyr Sprite Black 1 Assassinate 1 Consume Spirit 2 Disentomb 2 Doom Blade 1 Dread Warlock 1 Gravedigger 1 Howling Banshee 1 Kelinore Bat 1 Megrim 1 Relentless Rats 1 Soul Bleed 1 Underworld Dreams 1 Unholy Strength 1 Weakness 1 Zombie Goliath Red 1 Berserkers of Blood Ridge 1 Burning Inquiry 1 Dragon Whelp 1 Goblin Artillery 2 Goblin Piker 1 Jackal Familiar 2 Kindled Fury 1 Lava Axe 1 Panic Attack 1 Shatter 1 Siege-Gang Commander 1 Wall of Fire 1 Warp World Green 1 Borderland Ranger 1 Bountiful Harvest 1 Craw Wurm 1 Cudgel Troll 1 Deadly Recluse 2 Elvish Visionary 1 Emerald Oryx 1 Garruk Wildspeaker 1 Llanowar Elves 1 Naturalize 1 Rampant Growth 1 Runeclaw Bear 2 Stampeding Rhino 1 Windstorm Artifacts 1 Coat of Arms 1 Rod of Ruin 1 Spellbook 1 Wurm's Tooth 1 Terramorphic Expanse This was only my second time with M10 Sealed, but the pool looked pretty solid to me.

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Posted by at /  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 3 / 1413 words

Jul 2009

I haven’t been posting tournament reports lately, because frankly I haven’t been performing very well lately. Here are my last month and a half’s worth of results: May 23/GPT Bangkok #1 (SCR sealed): 0-2 drop May 31/GPT Bangkok #2 (SCR sealed): 2-3 drop June 6/GPT Bangkok #3 (SCR sealed): 4-2 June 7/Standard (Bant Finest Hour): 2-3 drop June 13/Standard-Nats Qualifier (Bant Finest Hour) 1-2 drop June 20/Standard-Nats Qualifier (Bant Finest Hour) 1-2 drop June 28/Standard-Nats Qualifier (BG Elves) 0-2 drop As you can see, I decided to switch to BG Elves after a few more tournaments with Bant.

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Jun 2009

A couple of friends were over from Singapore last weekend, and we decided to hang out and open a few boxes of Shards block cards to play casual sealed/draft, using the new M10 rules so we could get a feel for it. We played 1 sealed and 2 drafts; I personally played in the equivalent of around 10 rounds of limited, and my observations are: Number of times damage on the stack came up relevant: None Number of times there was a double-blocking situation: One, but we forgot to order blockers and I just immediately used a trick to get rid of one blocker.

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In case you haven’t heard, the internets are in an uproar over the announced M10 rules changes. A lot of famous Magic people like Randy Beuhler and Zvi Mowshowitz have chimed in with their opinions and in general a lot of forum posters are whining about the most controversial change: the removal of combat damage on the stack. I, for one, welcome our new non-damage stacking overlords. One of Magic’s strengths has always been that it is a dynamic, ever-changing game, and this is just another step in its’ evolution.

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The first GPT for Bangkok was last Saturday, May 23, 2009 at Robinson’s Galleria. Here’s the pool I was given to work with: White 1 Cradle of Vitality 1 Excommunicate 1 Rockcaster Platoon 1 Welkin Guide 1 Asha's Favor 1 Aven Trailblazer 1 Lapse of Certainty 1 Paragon of the Amesha 1 Valiant Guard Blue and Blue Hybrid 1 Call to Heel 1 Cloudheath Drake 1 Coma Veil 1 Kathari Screecher 1 Protomatter Powder 1 Faerie Mechanist 2 Grixis Illusionist 1 Master Transmuter 1 Parasitic Strix 1 Esper Stormblade Black and Black Hybrid 1 Archdemon of Unx 1 Bone Splinters 1 Executioner's Capsule 1 Fleshbag Marauder 1 Shadowfeed 1 Absorb Vis 1 Yoke of the Damned 1 Grixis Grimblade Red and Red Hybrid 1 Jund Battlemage 1 Thunder-Thrash Elder 1 Viashino Skeleton 1 Vithian Stinger 1 Kranioceros 1 Toxic Iguanar 1 Volcanic Fallout 2 Jund Hackblade Green and Green Hybrid 1 Court Archers 1 Gift of the Gargantuan 1 Topan Ascetic 1 Filigree Fracture 1 Nacatl Savage 1 Sylvan Bounty 1 Marisi's Twinclaws 2 Naya Hushblade White-Blue 1 Jhessian Balmgiver 1 Esper Cormorants 1 Aven Mimeomancer 1 Glassdust Hulk 1 Offering to Asha 1 Talon Trooper Blue-Black 1 Deny Reality 1 Soul Manipulation Black-Red 1 Bituminous Blast 1 Demonic Dread 1 Monstrous Carabid Red-Green 1 Exploding Borders 1 Nacatl Outlander 2 Firewild Borderpost Green-White 1 Steward of Valeron 1 Knight of the Reliquary 1 Valeron Outlander 1 Qasali Pridemage 1 Sigil Captain 1 Sigil of the Nayan Gods Esper 1 Windwright Mage 1 Tainted Sigil 1 Vectis Dominator Jund 1 Carrion Thrash 1 Morbid Bloom 1 Jund Sojourners Bant 1 Bant Charm 1 Waveskimmer Aven 2 Skyward Eye Prophets 1 Vedalken Heretic 1 Winged Coatl Grixis 1 Drastic Revelation Artifacts 1 Obelisk of Naya 1 Armillary Sphere 1 Kaleidostone Lands 1 Esper Panorama Let’s try something different and get some audience participation.

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May 2009

Last Friday, I was still unsure what to play at Regionals this year, having decided to nix Five-Color Control. Given the cards available, I could easily assemble RDW/Blightning or Chapin’s 5-Color Blood. But in the end, I gave in to the hype surrounding Tommy Ashton’s PTQ-winning decklist, Bant with Finest Hour: However, due to card availability issues, I didn’t have any [Dauntless Escort][3]s and only 1 [Noble Hierarch][4]. I moved cards around and tried to fit in [Vendillion Clique][5], which would serve as an additional evasive attacker on top of [Shorecrasher Mimic][6] and [Jhessian Infiltrator][7], plus a little extra disruption.

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Alara Reborn is finally available locally! For a while I thought about heading to Baguio for the King of the North tournament, but the fact is I have no standard deck ready at the moment. Besides, I wanted to practice sealed deckbuilding for the upcoming Bangkok GPTs, so this morning I was sleeving up a 40-card deck at Robinson’s Galleria. Hide DecklistShow Decklist -- Lands 1 Jungle Shrine 3 Plains 6 Island 5 Swamp Creatures 1 Cloudheath Drake 1 Master of Etherium 1 Fleshbag Marauder 1 Viscera Dragger 1 Sharuum the Hegemon 1 Tower Gargoyle 2 Ethersworn Shieldmage 1 Glassdust Hulk 1 Sanctum Plowbeast 2 Jhessian Zombies 1 Lord of Extinction 2 Grixis Grimblade Spells 1 Oblivion Ring 1 Scourglass 1 Agony Warp 1 Kiss of the Amesha 1 Obelisk of Bant 1 Mistvein Borderpost 1 Behemoth Sledge 1 Wildfield Borderpost 1 Slave of Bolas 1 Crystallization And the rest of the pool:

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And so, our delayed prerelease. My sealed deck (at least after initial tweaks – it varies slightly from my submitted list): Hide DecklistShow Decklist -- Lands 1 Crumbling Necropolis 1 Grixis Panorama 1 Jund Panorama 1 Jungle Shrine 2 Plains 1 Swamp 3 Mountain 5 Forest Creatures 1 Hell's Thunder 1 Hissing Iguanar 1 Druid of the Anima 1 Steward of Valeron 1 Igneous Pouncer 1 Monstrous Carabid 1 Pale Recluse 2 Qasali Pridemage 1 Maelstrom Pulse 2 Putrid Leech 2 Naya Sojourners 1 Jund Hackblade 1 Naya Hushblade 1 Messenger Falcons Spells 1 Oblivion Ring 1 Resounding Silence 1 Resounding Thunder 1 Fieldmist Borderpost 1 Bituminous Blast 2 Colossal Might 1 Firewild Borderpost And the rest of the pool:

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Apr 2009

As any Filipino player can tell you, local prereleases had to be postponed due to some problems with customs. Since NG had already rented out the space for the prerelease at Galleria, they went ahead and held some constructed events + drafts for people who came, and graciously gave out freebies to those disappointed would-be prereleasers. Kudos to NG for handling the situation well. I lent out my 5cc deck for a friend to play, and went SSC drafting instead.

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Most probably my last tournament playing 5cc this season, the local City Champs was last Saturday, Apr 18 at Robinson’s Galleria. I slightly tweaked the decklist I’ve been using for the past month. I was able to borrow 2 [Exotic Orchard][1] to improve my mana base, and I put the fourth [Volcanic Fallout][2] in the board to improve the difficult Faeries matchup, plus an additional Terror to help with [Mistbind Clique][4].

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I went to NG Galleria hoping for more practice with the 5cc deck from last week. I made some minor modifications: Maindeck -1 Plumeveil +1 Mulldrifter, Sideboard -1 Mulldrifter +1 Scourglass. The aggro matchup seemed very solid already so I felt I could afford to lose the fourth Plumeveil. The fourth Mulldrifter would have been a land if I had any [Exotic Orchard][5]. The tournament was small (barely twenty people), since the TO had split the usual Saturday tournament into one flight for people who arrived on time, and one flight for people who arrived late.

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Mar 2009

Finally getting back into constructed play, I assembled the following 5-color control deck to bring to battle this weekend: Hide DecklistShow Decklist -- Lands 3 Sunken Ruins 4 Reflecting Pool 4 Vivid Creek 3 Vivid Meadow 3 Vivid Marsh 2 Cascade Bluffs 2 Mystic Gate 1 Fetid Heath 1 Vivid Crag 3 Island Spells 1 Celestial Purge 1 Terror 3 Volcanic Fallout 1 Wrath of God 1 Pithing Needle 2 Broken Ambitions 1 Remove Soul 1 Negate 2 Cruel Ultimatum 4 Cryptic Command 4 Esper Charm 1 Liliana Vess 1 Jace Beleren 1 Obelisk of Alara Creatures 3 Mulldrifter 4 Plumeveil 2 Wall of Reverence 1 Broodmate Dragon Sideboard 1 Negate 1 Remove Soul 2 Celestial Purge 2 Wrath of God 2 infest 1 Scourglass 1 Wydwen 2 Kitchen Finks 2 Jace Beleren 1 Mulldrifter Obviously based on Nassif’s deck, but tweaked with some singletons that I like.

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For the record: I hate trading. I realize it’s necessary to the way Magic’s business model works, and I realize it’s part of what makes opening booster packs fun, but make no mistakes about it: I hate trading. Don’t get me wrong, I love Magic. More precisely, I love playing Magic. I want to play spells, to match wits with my opponents, to recover from mana screw, to win from one life, to make bad plays then learn from them.

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Posted by at /  Magic the Gathering / Syndicated: / 1 / 480 words
I reinstalled MTGO3 last week because I figured I could get some casual play out of it at least. After installation I found out that Conflux release events were this weekend so I might as well play, since I was not able to play IRL at this time. I was hoping MTGO3 had improved by now, and that they had sufficient server loading, etc. to handle the number of players without the servers being crashy and laggy and whatnot.

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Feb 2009

At the Conflux release event, we were given posters of the four planeswalkers fighting againt big, bad Nicol Bolas. It got a friend and I talking: could Nicol Bolas actually win against the four planeswalkers? The situation is: Player A controls [Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker][1], at starting loyalty. Player B controls [Ajani Vengeant][2], [Tezzeret the Seeker][3], [Elspeth, Knight-Errant][4] and [Sarkhan Vol][5], all at starting loyalty. Assuming each player has no other permanents and they cannot play any other spells.

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I decided to attend the Conflux release event last Saturday, Feb 7 at Neutral Grounds Galleria. As usual, I still had to go to work first so I didn’t make it in time for the first 32-man flight and had to wait for NG to restock on product for the second flight. Unfortunately, they were short on SoA boosters, so we would be playing sealed with 6 boosters of Conflux. Yes, six.

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It’s my first Magic outing after more than a month of hibernation. Hopefully Conflux shakes up standard and makes Magic more fun again. Let’s go! Usually I have to register an awesome pool and then get passed a mediocre one. I knew it was different this time around when the guy two seats to my right announced he was able to form a good Naya deck from the Shards of Alara packs alone!

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Dec 2008

The last limited tournament of the season, it was last week, December 20 at Robinson’s Galleria. The format was Shards of Alara sealed deck. For once, I opened a pretty good pool. Unfortunately, I failed to make the follow through. Decklist and (short) tournament report follows. Creatures 1 Sigiled Paladin 1 Welkin Guide 1 Viscera Dragger 1 Exuberant Firestoker 1 Predator Dragon 1 Ridge Rannet 1 Rockslide Elemental 1 Cylian Elf 1 Mosstodon 1 Mycoloth 1 Wild Nacatl 1 Bull Cerodon 1 Rip-Clan Crasher 1 Steward of Valeron Spells 2 Oblivion Ring 1 Resounding Silence 1 Dragon Fodder 1 Magma Spray 1 Resounding Thunder 1 Skeletonize 1 Soul's Fire Lands 1 Obelisk of Naya 1 Arcane Sanctum 2 Bant Panorama 3 Plains 6 Mountain 5 Forest Sideboard 2 Angelic Benediction 1 Angelsong 1 Dispeller's Capsule 1 Gustrider Exuberant 1 Sanctum Gargoyle 1 Cloudheath Drake 1 Coma Veil 1 Courier's Capsule 1 Covenant of Minds 1 Dawnray Archer 1 Etherium Sculptor 1 Jhessian Lookout 1 Outrider of Jhess 1 Spell Snip 1 Vectis Silencers 1 Bone Splinters 1 Corpse Connoisseur 1 Dreg Reaver 1 Immortal Coil 1 Infest 2 Shore Snapper 2 Undead Leotau 1 Dragon's Herald 1 Goblin Mountaineer 1 Lightning Talons 1 Viashino Skeleton 1 Ooze Garden 1 Resounding Roar 2 Savage Hunger 1 Soul's Might 1 Carrion Thrash 1 Deft Duelist 1 Fire-Field Ogre 2 Goblin Deathraiders 1 Hindering Light 1 Jhessian Infiltrator 1 Kederekt Creeper 1 Sprouting Thrinax 1 Obelisk of Esper 1 Obelisk of Grixis 1 Esper Panorama (The decklist above only lists 39 cards… not sure what the missing 40th card was )

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I’m on vacation, so it means I actually have time to hit FNM. I sleeved up the Kithkin deck (no more Blightning for me!) and headed over to Robinson’s Galleria (Getting robbed along the way fyi). Nothing surprising, I managed to make 3-1, good enough for fourth place and four packs with crap rares inside. My loss was to the mirror match, most probably due to my lower card quality, as I had only 1 planeswalker in my deck.

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Roy Tang is a:

roytang.net is a personal site, an E/N site, and kind of a commonplace book; I post about a random assortment of topics that interest me including software development, Magic the Gathering, pop culture, gaming, and tech life. This site is perpetually under renovation.