So I just finished the midnight prerelease for Shadows Over Innistrad at my local game store and it was pretty amazing. I went 3-0 (2-0 each round) for an overall second place (1st place just had better breakers than me). What really amazed me, though, was how I initially was so disappointed by my pile of cards and yet how they turned into synergies that were enough to get there each and every game. It’s almost 5am here, and I have more prerelease events to attend later this morning so for now I’ll just offer up the rares I opened (no double-rare packs for me tonight) and my deck list that I ended up playing. I’d say I’ll write up a more thorough report tomorrow but by the time I get back I won’t remember tonight’s games in all likelihood.
So here were my rares:
- Odric, Lunarch Marshal This was my stamped prerelease promo
- Slayer’s Plate
- Confirm Suspicions (a totally disappointing rare from the first pack I opened)
- Flameblade Angel (a totally exciting rare that did not have enough support to deserve a splash)
- Falkenrath Gorger (not bad, except it was literally the only vampire in my prerelease pack)
- Prized Amalgam (I did not have the graveyard shenanigan support to justify it)
- Fortified Village
So I was pretty disappointed in my initial pool. Not only did I open a rare vampire that gave all other vampires I had (zero!) madness, but I also got a graveyard shenanigan creature with no graveyard shenanigan support as well as a sweet Angel that I couldn’t justify splashing for as I had few other red playables.
When I settled into building I also noticed that the only color in which I had more than 5 creatures (not just playable creatures, any creatures) was white. Given that Odric looks insane I decided that white was immediately going to be included. Because of Odric’s ability to copy any keyword combat ability from any one of your creatures to all of them I decided to see which color had the best mix of combat abilities (given my limited options). That ended up being black. I had just enough decent / good cards in white / black that I didn’t feel the need to splash just to get to 23 playable cards and so I started building. Here’s what I ended up with (and the relevant combat abilities granted that Odric would spread to all creatures):
1 Emissary of the Sleepless (Flying) 1 Odric, Lunarch Marshal (None) 1 Inquisitor's Ox (Vigilance if Delirium) 1 Nearheath Chaplain (Lifelink) 2 Apothecary Geist (Flying) 1 Dauntless Cathar (None, can make Flying creatures from graveyard) 1 Unruly Mob (None) 1 Thraben Inspector (None) 1 Rottenheart Ghoul (None) 1 Accursed Witch (None) 1 Farbog Revenant (Skulk, Lifelink) 1 Rancid Rats (Skulk, Deathtouch) 1 Hope Against Hope (First Strike, if on a Human) 1 Call the Bloodline (makes Lifelink creatures) 1 True-Faith Censer (Vigilance) 1 Slayer's Plate (makes Flying creature if equipped creature dies and is Human) 1 Survive the Night (Indestructible) 1 Angelic Purge (None) 1 Pick the Brain (None) 1 Shamble Back (None) 2 Dead Weight (None) 9 Plains 8 Swamp
Incredibly, I drew Odric in each match (not each game) but any time I drew him it was basically a win for me. I remember one game when my opponent thought he had me ready for the kill in one more turn and I laid down an Odric, gave my whole team flying and lifelink, and flew in for the win.
In another game, I had an equipped creature that had vigilance, my Farbog Revenant with Skulk and Lifelink, and Hope Against Hope was giving another Human first strike. I top-decked the Odric and basically sealed the game. To add insult to injury, though, my next draw was the Rancid Rats which meant my whole team had first strike AND deathtouch.
I wouldn’t claim that this deck is particularly amazing, and in some games I definitely got help from the fact that my opponents got screwed on mana or flooded badly. But I’ll take it. This was an excellent beginning to my prerelease weekend and I can’t wait to head back in 5 hours and play some more with this set. SOI is definitely my favorite new set in a while. If you have the chance, I highly recommend playing in a prerelease.