MtG FNM Report – RB Vampires

If you’ve been listening to the podcast at all you know that I’ve been playing a lot of Magic: the Gathering and especially a lot of Friday Night Magic, so I thought I’d give a report on how I’m doing. Here’s what happened last week Friday at Outer Limits in Melville:

My Deck: 

4x Stromkirk Noble
2x Explosive Impact
4x Falkenrath Exterminator
1x Olivia Voldaren
4x Vampire Nighthawk
4x Smelt
4x Stromkirk Captain
4x Murder
3x Bloodline Keeper
4x Flames of the Firebrand
3x Olivia Voldaren
4x Pillar of Flame
4x Brimstone Volley
4x Mizzium Mortars
3x Searing Spear
9x Mountain
7x Swamp
4x Dragonskull Summit
3x Blood Crypt

So this deck is a fairly straightforward Vampire tribal deck. I’m a big fan of stupid tribal decks and the synergy that is offered by the Vampires is really good. Two sets of lords, one of which makes all my creatures first strike, just seems like value to me.

This particular build is also quite burn heavy for two reasons:
1. Burn is awesome. It’s always been one of my favorite mechanics in MtG, so ya.
2. The previous week I saw a lot of control decks that my creature-kill based deck could just not compete with. So the mainboard and sideboard burn gives me the options to just burn them out.

Round 1: 2-0 vs Selesna Midrange
I was really happy with how this game turned out. The opponent had some quite scary stuff going on, but a first striking nighthawk in the first game kept him at a distance until I could overload mizzium mortars for the win. In the second game I sideboarded in the Flames of the Firebrand which did great work slowing down his ramp and I just steam-rolled over him.
Round 2: 0-2 vs URW control
I played this game so poorly. This build is really, really, really strong. Plays a lot of board-sweep and Planeswalkers. I think I probably would have won the second game if I had just sent all my burn to his face (as was my plan) instead of messing around with his Planeswalkers. I’m disappointed in my play, but this is the deck that won the FNM that night… so I’m not completely shattered.
Round 3: 2-0 vs BW exalted
I won this for obvious reasons. Exalted isn’t really all that competitive in constructed play and I was able to outclass him creature for creature both games. I was lucky to be able to kill his Sublime Archangels as soon as they dropped and Flames of the Firebrand does wonders against the little exalted creatures.
Round 4: 2-1 vs Rakdos 
This was quite a difficult game. The Vampires are scary once they get rolling but are a little weak in the early game. His haste creatures caused me problems but unleashed creatures can’t block which lets the Vampires get out of hand and Olivia Voldaren came in to devastate his small creatures. The third game was really interesting with both of us playing “red control” just killing every creature that came out, but again Olivia swooped in for the win.
Cards of the Night:

This card is absolutely insane. This is the first tournament that I’ve played four of them in the deck and it really paid off. The combination of early game cheap kill and a late game one-sided board-sweep is so versatile.

This definitely won at least one game for me, and contributed hugely to a number of others.



Olivia is certainly the trump card in my deck. If you can’t kill her the turn she comes down then you’ve pretty much lost. I even stole a creature this time where mostly I just kill things.
Giant flying, weenie killing, giant stealing threat? What’s not to like?
This is (in my humble opinion) the best value magic creature ever printed. It’s got evasion, the life gain is very useful (especially against Rakdos) and the deathtouch means it can trade up against anything my opponent could send my way.
Especially when paired with the Stromkirk Captain this card is a devastating creature. On turn three it is also a big psychological blow to the opponent.
Learning Points:
Overall I’m quite happy with the deck and how I played it. My loss against the URW control deck should cement in my brain that I need to concentrate on my game plan and push it through. Planeswalkers are scary and can certainly do nasty things, but wasting burn spells to delay them is not as good as just turning your opponent into a pile of ash.
So that’s what happened: I went 3-1 for the evening and came in 3rd, cool stuff.
“Finding themselves in a new and unexplored world, they immediately set it on fire” 
– Goblin Razerunners

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