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Drafting with Nico - Zendikar #13

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About Nico Bohny

Nico Bohny
Nico Bohny

Nico is a level 4 member of the Pro Players Club, he has 79 lifetime Pro Points and is one of the best Limited players worldwide! Some of Nico’s MTG accomplishments include:

  • Winning Grand Prix Torino
  • Top 8 at Pro Tour Hollywood
  • Winning the team World Championship

Apart from playing high-level tournaments, Nico judges various Magic tournaments. In addition Nico is the original designer of the BW token deck. He was also spotted winning matches with 20/20 avatar tokens (or as he says “Chuck Norris tokens”) from Dark Depths at Nationals ;-).

Hi everybody!

It's time for another draft!

If you missed the last episode of "Drafting with Nico" you can find it here:

Drafting With Nico - Zendikar #12

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Level 4 pro player Nico Bohny takes us through a Zendikar 8-4 draft queue on Magic Online. He shares some comprehensive thoughts about both the picks and the games, and talks us through each step of the way! If you're looking to improve your Limited game, this is the article series for you!

Drafting With Whisky

Booster 1 - Zendikar

Pack 1 pick 1:

Baloth Cage Trap Heartstabber Mosquito Frontier Guide Trapfinder's Trick Kor Hookmaster Blazing Torch Armament Master Tuktuk Grunts Vampire's Bite Relic Crush Magma Rift Oran-Rief Recluse Spell Pierce Brave the Elements Plains

My Pick: Kor Hookmaster

I'm glad to open this booster in a Magic Online draft instead of the Pro Tour. It doesn't contain lots of good cards - Baloth Cage Trap, Heartstabber Mosquito and Kor Hookmaster are all fine, but never ever first pick material. Still, Kor Hookmaster is clearly the best of those three, so he'll be this deck's firstborn.

Pack 1 pick 2:

Khalni Heart Expedition Plains Mire Blight Zendikar Farguide Magma Rift Feast of Blood Kor Cartographer Merfolk Seastalkers Oran-Rief Recluse Shieldmate's Blessing Surrakar Marauder Akoum Refuge Plated Geopede Molten Ravager

My Pick: Plated Geopede

We don’t have too many options here. There are no white cards to add to our previously picked Kor Hookmaster. Plated Geopede, Surrakar Marauder and Merfolk Seastalkers are the viable options in the other colors. And again, we have a clear winner - one that also likes the company of Kor Hookmaster: Plated Geopede.

Pack 1 pick 3:

Shoal Serpent Tuktuk Grunts Ior Ruin Expedition Joraga Bard Slaughter Cry Plains Graypelt Refuge Carnage Altar Grim Discovery Mire Blight Sunspring Expedition Merfolk Wayfinder Vampire Lacerator

My Pick: Tuktuk Grunts

The pick from this pack looks like it’s going to end up in our sideboard. Ok, Vampire Lacerator could very well be maindeck material, so could Tuktuk Grunts. I'll just go and get something from the refrigerator and hope for better packs.

Pack 1 pick 4:

Nimbus Wings Predatory Urge Forest Kor Cartographer Shieldmate's Blessing Shoal Serpent Trapfinder's Trick Frontier Guide Hagra Diabolist Khalni Heart Expedition Spidersilk Net Soul Stair Expedition

My Pick: Kor Cartographer

And once again time to go to the kitchen. Coke or beer? Maybe some whisky would increase the fun factor of this draft...

Pack 1 pick 5:

Khalni Gem Joraga Bard Tempest Owl Forest Reckless Scholar Mindless Null Sunspring Expedition Seascape Aerialist Noble Vestige Soul Stair Expedition Beastmaster Ascension

My Pick: Khalni Gem

Time to write something about the pack again... As empty as this looks, I may be ending up splashing some cards if the card quality doesn't rise in the next few packs. I don't like Khalni Gem in Red/White, neither do I like splashes, but it’s still better than Noble Vestige, isn't it?

Pack 1 pick 6:

Soaring Seacliff Ondu Cleric Goblin Bushwhacker Spreading Seas Goblin Shortcutter Island Lethargy Trap Spire Barrage Graypelt Refuge Tanglesap

My Pick: Goblin Shortcutter

And this pack is better than the three previous ones. Not exciting though, but it contains a solid 2-drop.

Pack 1 pick 7:

Expedition Map Kazandu Refuge Island Turntimber Grove Goblin Bushwhacker Caravan Hurda Kraken Hatchling Makindi Shieldmate Tanglesap

My Pick: Goblin Bushwhacker

Yay, more playables! I’m beginning to love this draft... not!

Pack 1 pick 8:

Noble Vestige Mindless Null Seascape Aerialist Scythe Tiger Forest Zektar Shrine Expedition Explorer's Scope Tempest Owl

My Pick: Zektar Shrine Expedition

But this one is good... I really mean it this time. Aggro is the best strategy, when the card quality at the table is that low.

Pack 1 pick 9:

Trapfinder's Trick Tuktuk Grunts Relic Crush Magma Rift Spell Pierce Brave the Elements Plains

My Pick: Magma Rift

Removal seems more important than Tuktuk Grunts in a non-ally beatdown deck.

Pack 1 pick 10:

Plains Mire Blight Zendikar Farguide Shieldmate's Blessing Akoum Refuge Molten Ravager

My Pick: Molten Ravager

And maybe, we'll be mono-red again... Who knows, White has been cut quite drastically. Well, all the good cards have been somehow...

Pack 1 pick 11:

Plains Carnage Altar Mire Blight Sunspring Expedition Merfolk Wayfinder

My Pick: Sunspring Expedition

Pack 1 pick 12:

Forest Shieldmate's Blessing Trapfinder's Trick Soul Stair Expedition

My Pick: Soul Stair Expedition

Pack 1 pick 13:

Forest Sunspring Expedition Noble Vestige

My Pick: Forest

Pack 1 pick 14:

Island Lethargy Trap

My Pick: Lethargy Trap

Pack 1 pick 15:

Island

My Pick: Island

Summary Pack 1

What to say here. Poor packs, poor picks, Red seems open, White seems as dry as everything else... including my whisky.

Booster 2 - Zendikar

Pack 2 pick 1:

Oran-Rief Survivalist Mark of Mutiny Island Seismic Shudder Jwar Isle Refuge World Queller River Boa Turntimber Grove Kor Sanctifiers Crypt Ripper Tuktuk Grunts Kraken Hatchling Day of Judgment Caravan Hurda Goblin War Paint

My Pick: Day of Judgment

Hmmm, a foil Wrath of God... with no real other options... It seems promising, even though it doesn't fit at all in our deck right now. But maybe, if we get some more Zektar Shrine Expeditions, or some lategame cards, Day of Judgment could prove to be quite useful.

Pack 2 pick 2:

Relic Crush Into the Roil Bog Tatters Jwar Isle Refuge Kor Outfitter Bladetusk Boar Demolish Kor Duelist Piranha Marsh Kor Skyfisher Spell Pierce Predatory Urge Forest Merfolk Seastalkers

My Pick: Kor Skyfisher

Now we're talking business. Sign me up for White again!

Pack 2 pick 3:

Soaring Seacliff Forest Carnage Altar Needlebite Trap Mire Blight Zendikar Farguide Goblin Ruinblaster Cancel Shieldmate's Blessing Bog Tatters Magma Rift Vampire Hexmage Torch Slinger

My Pick: Torch Slinger

That’s another buddy for Kor Skyfisher to fool around with.

Pack 2 pick 4:

Cliff Threader Gomazoa Explorer's Scope Blood Seeker Paralyzing Grasp Plains Bladetusk Boar Kor Duelist Caller of Gales Pyromancer Ascension Desecrated Earth Shepherd of the Lost

My Pick: Shepherd of the Lost

The angel seems even better with Day of Judgment. Without the Wrath, I should have seriously considered taking Bladetusk Boar here.

Pack 2 pick 5:

Ruinous Minotaur Piranha Marsh Goblin War Paint Plains Guul Draz Vampire Tanglesap Shepherd of the Lost Into the Roil Makindi Shieldmate Bold Defense Brave the Elements

My Pick: Shepherd of the Lost

Ap(h)ex Twins - Come to daddy!

Pack 2 pick 6:

Sejiri Refuge Island Swamp Beast Hunt Ravenous Trap Summoner's Bane Demolish Grim Discovery Cancel Vastwood Gorger

My Pick: Sejiri Refuge

Empty again. I’m getting ready to splash that Windrider Eel I don't have yet...

Pack 2 pick 7:

Tanglesap Mark of Mutiny Kraken Hatchling Unstable Footing Cliff Threader Piranha Marsh Sky Ruin Drake Caravan Hurda Island

My Pick: Cliff Threader

And another two drop for me. Things are improving!

Pack 2 pick 8:

Teetering Peaks Hagra Crocodile Mountain Savage Silhouette Quest for the Gravelord Shatterskull Giant Kazandu Refuge Ior Ruin Expedition

My Pick: Shatterskull Giant

They really are. Boy, look at that curve! As sweet as Pamela Anderson used to be!

Pack 2 pick 9:

Island Seismic Shudder Jwar Isle Refuge Turntimber Grove Tuktuk Grunts Kraken Hatchling Caravan Hurda

My Pick: Tuktuk Grunts

Pack 2 pick 10:

Relic Crush Jwar Isle Refuge Demolish Piranha Marsh Spell Pierce Forest

My Pick: Jwar Isle Refuge

Pack 2 pick 11:

Forest Carnage Altar Mire Blight Cancel Shieldmate's Blessing

My Pick: Shieldmate's Blessing

Pack 2 pick 12:

Plains Caller of Gales Pyromancer Ascension Desecrated Earth

My Pick: Pyromancer Ascension

Pack 2 pick 13:

Ruinous Minotaur Plains Bold Defense

My Pick: Ruinous Minotaur

Pack 2 pick 14:

Island Swamp

My Pick: Swamp

Pack 2 pick 15:

Island

My Pick: Island

Summary Pack 2

I really liked this pack. And it's not just because of the whisky. My mana curve looks nice; the card quality is improving quite a bit. We're getting there!

Booster 3 - Zendikar

Pack 3 pick 1:

Windrider Eel Inferno Trap Trapfinder's Trick Vampire Nighthawk Trailblazer's Boots Journey to Nowhere Mountain Vampire's Bite Slaughter Cry Kor Outfitter Shatterskull Giant Beast Hunt Savage Silhouette Scythe Tiger Bloodchief Ascension

My Pick: Journey to Nowhere

There's always some bitterness in passing Vampire Nighthawks, but it's not like we don’t get the weapons to fight the plague. Just wait to be exiled, in case we meet again, little vampire!

Pack 3 pick 2:

Paralyzing Grasp Brave the Elements Beast Hunt Journey to Nowhere Bog Tatters Cancel Scythe Tiger Forest Goblin Ruinblaster Giant Scorpion Slaughter Cry Kor Outfitter Vines of Vastwood Trapmaker's Snare

My Pick: Journey to Nowhere

You'd better not dare to enter battlefield, Nighthawk!

Pack 3 pick 3:

Devout Lightcaster Stonework Puma Needlebite Trap Into the Roil Island Nissa's Chosen Ondu Cleric Sejiri Refuge Ruinous Minotaur Blood Seeker Pillarfield Ox Kor Aeronaut Goblin War Paint

My Pick: Kor Aeronaut

Ok, enough is enough, sorry, Devout Lightcaster. Kor Aeronaut looks more attractive to me. Much more! And by now, we're white enough to even support his mana cost.

Pack 3 pick 4:

Kabira Crossroads Guul Draz Vampire Caravan Hurda Island Nissa's Chosen Highland Berserker Vampire Hexmage Whiplash Trap Kor Skyfisher Runeflare Trap Spreading Seas Murasa Pyromancer

My Pick: Kor Skyfisher

Dude, what makes you go around this late in pack 3? I'll grant you shelter, be my guest.

Pack 3 pick 5:

Kor Sanctifiers Landbind Ritual Primal Bellow Caller of Gales Tajuru Archer Desecrated Earth Soaring Seacliff Turntimber Grove Narrow Escape Goblin Shortcutter Swamp

My Pick: Kor Sanctifiers

Let's check, I have enough two-drops by now. This makes me pick Kor Sanctifiers over Goblin Shortcutter here.

Pack 3 pick 6:

Swamp Guul Draz Vampire Narrow Escape Hellfire Mongrel Goblin Shortcutter Kor Cartographer Spreading Seas AEther Figment Turntimber Grove Seismic Shudder

My Pick: Hellfire Mongrel

Same counts for Hellfire Mongrel.

Pack 3 pick 7:

Mire Blight Slaughter Cry Zektar Shrine Expedition Vines of Vastwood Pillarfield Ox Hedron Scrabbler Quest for the Gemblades Mountain Scythe Tiger

My Pick: Zektar Shrine Expedition

But not for Pillarfield Ox. You wont sneak into our deck, you stubborn dude. Not unless you grow yourself some claws!

Pack 3 pick 8:

Torch Slinger Ior Ruin Expedition Shatterskull Giant Khalni Gem Quest for Pure Flame Swamp Into the Roil Bold Defense

My Pick: Torch Slinger

Aaaaah, the Giant/Slinger pick again. This time I choose you, Torch Slinger. Kor Skyfisher likes your kind, and since I'll not play the Tuktuk Grunts, I like some company for the angels in the 5 mana slot.

Pack 3 pick 9:

Trapfinder's Trick Trailblazer's Boots Mountain Slaughter Cry Beast Hunt Savage Silhouette Scythe Tiger

My Pick: Slaughter Cry

Pack 3 pick 10:

Brave the Elements Beast Hunt Scythe Tiger Forest Slaughter Cry Trapmaker's Snare

My Pick: Brave the Elements

Pack 3 pick 11:

Needlebite Trap Island Sejiri Refuge Ruinous Minotaur Pillarfield Ox

My Pick: Ruinous Minotaur

Pack 3 pick 12:

Kabira Crossroads Caravan Hurda Island Runeflare Trap

My Pick: Kabira Crossroads

Pack 3 pick 13:

Landbind Ritual Desecrated Earth Swamp

My Pick: Landbind Ritual

Pack 3 pick 14:

Swamp Seismic Shudder

My Pick: Seismic Shudder

Pack 3 pick 15:

Mountain

My Pick: Mountain

Summary Pack 3

This deck turned out to be way better than I expected after pack 1. I really like it. I have to cut the Tuktuk Grunts and Kor Cartographer to improve the mana curve though.

My Deck

Drafting with Nico - Zendikar #13

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White
Red

This deck forms part of my feature article:

Drafting with Nico - Zendikar #13

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Round 1 - We_Own_All - Green/Black/Blue

Game 1

I win the die roll and keep 3 Plains, Mountain, Plated Geopede, Journey to Nowhere, Day of Judgment. This hand is interesting, because it already provides some kind of plan - push through early damage, hold your creatures back (hopefully also drawing into a Zektar Shrine Expedition, and then wrath his guys away and rebuild with Journey to Nowhere as a backup plan. My second turn Plated Geopede meets his Frontier Guide, who isn't exactly the right man to stop my furious insect. Plated Geopede bashes in for some damage, but since I keep drawing lands, there's nothing to follow up.

Draft

Making things even worse, my opponent shows no intentions to play more guys, he just starts fetching some lands, eventually plays Soul Stair Expedition and shuts down my attacker with Paralyzing Grasp. Wow, that really ruins my plan so far. The shuffler helps a lot, and after delivering me land number 11 (which is number 7 in a row without any spells), I feel like playing another game...

Game 2

My hand looks like it has more business in game 2: Mountain, Plains, Plated Geopede, Goblin Shortcutter, Hellfire Mongrel, Ruinous Minotaur and Shepherd of the Lost. Somehow I have the feeling that I'll be ending this game with two lands on my side of the table (and not just because Ruinous Minotaur ate them all), but let's not be too negative.

I don't draw a land on the next turn, but still play Plated Geopede choosing to hold back Goblin Shortcutter to negate a blocker for a turn later on. Disfigure takes down Plated Geopede, and Cliff Threader replaces it. Oran-Rief Recluse comes down to deal with my mountainwalker, and finally I draw another land to play Hellfire Mongrel.

Meanwhile I've drawn into Goblin Bushwhacker, and I try to bolster my forces and then swing for a ton of damage with Goblin Bushwhacker and Goblin Shortcutter. On my way to this goal, I have to exile a Timbermaw Larva with Journey to Nowhere, but even after some more draws, I fail to draw more lands. Territorial Baloth comes down, and with the help of Predatory Urge, he starts taking down my guys.

Draft

That’s another plan gone wrong. With Goblin Bushwhacker, I can bring my opponent down to 8, losing some power in the progress. With Kor Skyfisher, I have to return my Journey to Nowhere to my hand, timewalking myself for a turn, and try to finish the enchanted beast. But Vines of Vastwood is ready to steal a game which I expected to win several turns ago.

I log off, and look for something else to do other than playing Magic Online. Never play another draft queue after losses like that!

More whisky for me instead!

Thanks for reading,

Nico

Pick Votes



Deck Analysis and Ask the Pro

Make sure to bid on my latest auction and submit your questions for the next installment of Ask the Pro:

Announcing “Ask the Pro” and Introducing Nico Bohny

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Ask the Pro Logo

I would like to announce the amazing new feature called "Ask the Pro", as well as introduce you to Pro Player Nico Bohny who is joining Blackborder.com as a feature writer!
I want to provide you with some details about him as well as explain to you the "Ask the Pro" feature.

Ask the Pro

As promised, Blackborder.com is continually adding more amazing features to the site. The latest feature is our upcoming “Ask the Pro” column, where Pro Player Nico Bohny will answer user submitted questions concerning Magic the Gathering, the Pro Players lifestyle, the Pro Tour, deckbuilding and anything else you want to ask him!

You can already send all your questions to Nico, using the contact form (use the "Ask the Pro" setting to reach him). Make sure to include your name and location.
(Note: This feature isn’t intended for rules-related questions. You dont have to limit yourself to one question a week. You can send in all the questions that come to your mind at anytime.)

Nico will then pick the most interesting questions and answer them each week in a feature article on Blackborder.com. He will also try to answer as many questions as possible individually, if he has the time to do so. In order for a question to have a good chance of being featured in the "Ask the Pro" column, you should write the question in correct English and give as many details as possible.

All the users whose questions are chosen by Nico and answered in his feature article will receive 250 Blackborder points!

Nico Bohny
Nico Bohny at Pro Tour Hollywood

About Nico Bohny

A level 4 member of the Pro Players Club, Nico is uniquely positioned to answer your questions about the life of the professional Magic Player, share stories about travelling the world and talk about the role Magic plays in his life. Nico has currently 74 lifetime Pro points! Some of Nico’s MTG accomplishments include:

  • Winning Grand Prix Torino
  • Top 8 at Pro Tour Hollywood
  • Winning the team World Championships

Apart from playing high-level tournaments, Nico judges various Magic tournaments. In addition Nico is the original designer of the BW token deck, which performed well in the current Standard format. He was also spotted winning matches with 20/20 avatar tokens (or as he says “Chuck Norris tokens”) from Dark Depths at last Nationals ;-).

Nico on Blackborder.com

“I am excited to write for Blackborder.com and I am looking forward to all your questions! I will try to answer as many questions as possible.
I also want to thank Blackborder.com for providing me with this opportunity!

I am looking forward to the amazing times ahead of us. Feel free to send me any questions, suggestions or ideas using the contact form.

Above all, have fun!

Nico Bohny
Feature Writer
Blackborder.com"

Thank you Nico. Welcome to Blackborder.com, and we look forward to your contributions!

Keep your browser tuned to Blackborder.com, send your questions to Nico using the “Ask the Pro” contact form and invite your friends to join the rapidly growing interactive Magic the Gathering portal that Blackborder.com is!

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