THS: Sealed pool #2

For those who haven’t seen it yet, I posted my build of the previous sealed pool in the comments section of that post. (I prefer that to a separate post so people reading this later don’t see my build before they see the pool.) While most people who looked at that pool came up with the same build, a few of us later found a build that seemed to do better, and that build is also included in the comments.

I played at another sealed deck PTQ this weekend. I opened an amazing pool with Abhorrent Overlord and Whip of Erebos, so of course it didn’t come back to me, unlike the crappy pool I opened last week. In its place, I got a pool with 2 bomb but little removal. I did only slightly better this time, going 1-2 drop, even though I always chose to play first. I’d like to blame opposing bombs (my round 1 opponent killed me from 17 life on turn 5 with just Anax and Cymede and Labyrinth Champion on the table, although this was my fault as I should have realized he could do 17 damage and should have blocked the Champion to force a trick) and bad luck (missing my third land drop in round 3 when I’d kept a 2-land-plus-cantrip hand on the play). Here’s my pool, which I’ve also posted on TappedOut. How would you have built it? Post your builds in the comments and I’ll post the build I played at the PTQ, and how I’d build it today, in the comments section a couple of days from now.

Bronze Sable
Flamecast Wheel
2 Fleetfeather Sandals
Opaline Unicorn
Prowler’s Helm
Traveler’s Amulet

Battlewise Valor
Cavalry Pegasus
Divine Verdict
Ephara’s Warden
Favored Hoplite
Glare of Heresy
Gods Willing
3 Lagonna-Band Elder
Ordeal of Heliod
3 Setessan Battle Priest
Silent Artisan
Traveling Philosopher
Wingsteed Rider

Aqueous Form
Breaching Hippocamp
Fate Foretold
Lost in a Labyrinth
Meletis Charlatan
Mnemonic Wall
Prescient Chimera
Thassa’s Bounty
Thassa’s Emissary
Triton Shorethief

Baleful Eidolon
Boon of Erebos
Cutthroat Maneuver
Dark Betrayal
Gray Merchant of Asphodel
Keepsake Gorgon
2 Ordeal of Erebos
Pharika’s Cure
Returned Centaur
Returned Phalanx

Arena Athlete
Coordinated Assault
Deathbellow Raider
Dragon Mantle
Messenger’s Speed
2 Priest of Iroas
Purphoros’s Emissary
Spearpoint Oread
Titan of Eternal Fire
Two-Headed Cerberus
Wild Celebrants

Anthousa, Setessan Hero
Centaur Battlemaster
Commune with the Gods
2 Fade into Antiquity
Feral Invocation
Leafcrown Dryad
Nemesis of Mortals
Nessian Asp
Nessian Courser
Nylea’s Presence
Savage Surge
Sedge Scorpion
Shredding Winds
Staunch-Hearted Warrior
Time to Feed
Vulpine Goliath

Battlewise Hoplite
Kragma Warcaller
Polis Crusher
Prophet of Kruphix

Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx

One Response to THS: Sealed pool #2

  1. sameer says:

    The build I played at the PTQ was G/U.

    Creatures (14):
    – 1cc: Sedge Scorpion
    – 2cc: Leafcrown Dryad; Omenspeaker, Vaporkin
    – 3cc: Nessian Courser; Opaline Unicorn
    – 4cc: Staunch-Hearted Warrior; Thassa’s Emissary
    – 5cc: Anthousa Setessan Hero, Centaur Battlemaster, Nessian Asp; Prophet of Kruphix; Prescient Chimera
    – 6cc: Nemesis of Mortals

    Spells (9):
    – 1cc: Aqueous Form
    – 2cc: Commune with the Gods, Nylea’s Presence, Savage Surge; Fate Foretold
    – 3cc: Fade into Antiquity, Feral Invocation, Time to Feed
    – 4cc: Griptide

    Land (17): 10 Forests, 7 Islands

    I felt that green had the best cards and blue added some early drops and Griptide. G/U also allowed me to run both my bombs (Prophet of Kruphix and Anthousa Setessan Hero) without splashing an additional color. The deck was a bit heavy on 5-drops, but I did have Opaline Unicorn to help accelerate to 5 mana, and a number of early drops to buy me time.

    I briefly considered splashing red for Polis Crusher and Titan of Eternal Fire. I was already running Opaline Unicorn and Nylea’s Presence, and could add a Traveler’s Amulet and a Mountain. However, I already had enough late drops and didn’t have any cards I wanted to cut, so I decided against the splash.

    I went 1-2 this time, only slightly better than the previous PTQ. In my first match, my opponent killed me from 17 life on turn 5 of game 3 with Anax and Cymede + Labyrinth Champion. He’d just enchanted Anax and Cymede with Chosen by Heliod and then attacked. I didn’t do the math and so didn’t realize that he could kill me if he had 2 tricks; he had Coordinated Assault + Battlewise Valor, and was able to do exactly 17 points of damage. Even if I’d determined that he wasn’t able to kill me, I should still have blocked the Labyrinth Champion (then a 3/3) with my Nessian Courser to force a trick. Normally that would only have delayed the inevitable by a turn or 2, but I would have drawn Prophet of Kruphix on my turn and that might have let me regain control of the game. Unfortunately, I got greedy and tried to get the most value out of the Feral Invocation that was in my hand, and that lost me the game.

    I won my second match, and won game 1 in my third match, but then lost the next 2 after my opponent switched from a G/U deck to a R/W deck post-sideboard. In retrospect, that’s probably also what I should have built from my pool.

    Creatures (15):
    – 1cc: 2 Priest of Iroas; Favored Hoplite
    – 2cc: Arena Athlete; Cavalry Pegasus, Traveling Philosopher
    – 3cc: Spearpoint Oread, Two-Headed Cerberus; Wingsteed Rider, 3 Lagonna-Band Elder
    – 4cc: Purphoros’s Emissary
    – 5cc: Wild Celebrants
    – 6cc: Titan of Eternal Fire

    Spells (8):
    – 1cc: Coordinated Assault, Dragon Mantle; Gods Willing
    – 2cc: Battlewise Valor, Ordeal of Heliod; Prowler’s Helm, Fleetfeather Sandals
    – 4cc: Divine Verdict

    Land (17): 9 Mountains, 8 Plains

    This build has a few things in its favor:
    – It has a better curve, unlike the previous build which has a lot of 5cc creaturs.
    – Favored Hoplite and Wingsteed Riders can win games single-handedly if you manage to get a +2/+2 or +3/+3 Aura on them.
    – Titan of Eternal Fire, Prowler’s Helm, and Fleetfeather Sandal make great finishers if the deck stalls out.
    – It has hard creature removal in the form of Divine Verdict and Titan of Eternal Fire, in place of the temporary Griptide and the situational Time to Feed.
    – The enchantment and artifact removal are on creatures and so are never dead, unlike the G/U whose Fade into Antiquity was sometimes dead and sometimes needed to be supplemented with the second one postboard.

    I did play the R/W build against some draft decks to see if it was any good. It still went 1-2, but the games felt a lot closer. That might be because the deck was stronger, or it might be because Theros sealed decks are stronger than Theros draft decks (since you have twice as many packs in which to open a bomb, and there’s a lot less removal for bombs in this format). Either way, if you’re building a Theros sealed deck, it’s probably worth looking into whether it’s possible to build a fast R/W (or W/U) deck instead of just playing the 2 colors with the best cards and synergies.

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