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By Algahra
6 months ago  (4 months ago)
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Hello Internet,

As always, here is another one of my deck lists and a tournament report. I ranked Top 4, losing to our new Phoenix Shogun, may his reign be glorious.

Things of note:

Provinces: Revels over Meditations, both are swingy provinces, Revels swings higher. I played a lot of games where I just passed first and revels did work.

Dynasty: Not running Imperial Storehouse. I have decided the holding limit I am most comfortable with was 12. So i mulled over 1x storehouse or 2x storehouse and 2x ancestral shrine. But Shrine I felt would be more important and 1x Imperial Storehouse felt only ok so I went with 3x prodigy. (This decision might have influenced by my desire to use the grand championship promos cause I am bad like that)

Conflict: I ran Feral Ningyo x2. I wanted more conflict characters, didn't feel shrine maidens were necessary with the ever shrinking spell count and was incredibly wrong in thinking 2x Isawa Tadaka (or Tada!ka, if you will) was enough. I should have been on x3 Conflict Tadaka for life. That being said, Ningyos did a lot of work for me in the tournament in providing another force pump for Master of Gisei Toshi(MoGT) or allowing me to burst down Magistrate Stations (which was very important given the number of Cranes) so they were acceptable, but I probably should have just had 3 Tadaka and 3 Banzai.

On the the matches, again disclaimer this is all from memory and the length of worlds and experience of returning home in a blizzard has likely scrambled a bit of it. I apologies for any mistakes.

Day 1A:

Match 1: vs David Latimore - Crane SoV - dragon splash

Game 1. SoV Crane. The matchup I am probably the most comfortable with in the tournament. He goes first, 4 fate on Doji Challenger. I just pass. He breaks manicured gardens. I play ancient master, win favor. Next turn I buy some small shugenja, he buys Kozunobu with 3. I pass. I attack and hit Magistrate Station as is the norm. He double defends and I don't even try to break it hoping he gets greedy and uses it to attack water into me. Its exactly what happens. DoP the water ring, Censure the voice and free break Magistrate station. So the game is not going terrible, but my board is meh, 2 provinces are broken and his is just getting bigger. Next turn I wanna say he buys takamori which I am 100% ok with. I cast five fires number 1. Turn is still kinda brutal and we end both essentially having no boards. Next turn he breaks upholding, I see his hand, pull his one military pump, but he wins an earth ring. Draws a card. Uses the crane disguise character to draw another. Draws PD and Banzai which is essentially exactly what he needs and to stop the tides from turning I have to Five Fires again. Conflict Tadaka comes out next, we get to Time and my opponent concedes seeing I am in control.

I want to give a special shout out to David though for running all the extra Drafts - Drafting is awesome. Thanks.

Record 1- 0.

Match 2: Cory Fitzsimmons - Kyuden Bayushi Scorpion - Forgot the splash, wanna say crane but not sure

This match up I am struggling to remember. I believe he was on Forged edict. I remember this game being a lot of back and forth. Clouding a 2 fate Sadako who just keeps getting him favor. Eventually I win but I can't really add more.

Record: 2-0

Match 3: Nathan Markley - Dragon - Seeker of Air - Phoenix Splash

This matchup is very unfortunate for my opponent and the game is blow out. I go first, I open a body to poke, he does 2 fate Kitsuki Investigator. I pass my attack, he goes in with Investigator, I cloud it, he doesn't have a let go. He plays card to break, I DoP the ring. I attack hit shameful, he has a favorable ground to move the investigator in to honor. I try to break, he invests a lot to stop me. I am pretty happy even though I don't break. He ends the turn out of fate, down on cards and a fateless, clouded, honored investigator staying for just another turn. Next turn I break shameful with Ethereal Dreamer, he hits my Shameful to stop his crack back, I hit his upholding and have to agonize over do I break it or not. I have 2x a bunch of cards in my hand. I decide, I might as well given the massive advantage I have and his board is all gone next turn anyway if I win the void ring. He pulls 2x against the waves over 2x supernatual storm or censure. Next turn he flips only Shugenja buys Yokuni. He has 2 unknown provinces 1 air and 1 fire as I am assuming box is Sacred Sanctuary. I am kinda afraid of Resto but attack blind to break anyway. Hit meditations, I bow Yokuni with Box and Against the waves and my opponent concedes.

Record 3 - 0.

Match 4: Marc Soiferman - Crane - Keeper of Air - Scorpion Splash

I hate KoA Crane / Scorpion splash / Kill decks. I don't know if its my hardest matchup but definitely my most annoying. Good news is I am playing a friend, so guarantees a person I like makes the cut. His opening flop is absolutely disgusting in Doji Challenger and x2 favorable ground. I am forced to pass right away. He gets a free break on shameful, I get favor with Ancient Master. Next turn is kinda slow, I break one of the favorable grounds (it wasn't magistrate station yay). And feel ok. Next turn I attacked hit magistrate station and things go down hill. He gets another break has a much larger board then me and I am feeling the pressure as I need to break that magistrate station. I essentially pass to hold on favor and try and make a plan for next turn. Next turn comes, he plays meek informant, realizes he can't save magistrate station goes offensive to break my third province. So talking after the game, defending here was likely a mistake. He is able to kill my Shiba Yojimbo and MoGT. I do break magistrate station. He is unable to break KM this turn. Next turn I am unable to save enough to Five Fires and survive. So survival just delayed the inevitable and I lose.

Record: 3-1

Match 5: Alain Laugier - Crane - Seeker of Void - Dragon Splash

Another match, another Crane. Just like my other SoV crane match, they invest heavily in bodies, I let them provinces to let me bank fate. I five fires in the draw phase to wipe his board. I play Conflict Tadaka next turn and its game over. I wish I could add more, but this game was really clockwork and it was late enough in the day I am losing memory. There was a part where I was surprised by a Daimyo Gunbai but overall I got control pretty early and never switched back.

Record: 4-1

Match 6: Greg Nielsen - Crane - Keeper of Air - Scorpion Splash

So I am feeling pretty good right now. Made the cut. Another Crane. Find out pretty quick the RL card is Guest of Honor. Feel even better about this matchup cause Guest of Honor dies hard to Five Fires, which is exactly what happens. Conflict Tadaka hits the table and its another game that goes like clockwork.

Record: 5-1, lose to Travis McDaniel on ESoS for Hatamoto and I am sad. Tsuke playmat is so pretty. The Golden Provinces are a nice consolation prize though. I am also 6 overall so I am pretty good position for the cut and not having to play round 1. Went out for Sushi and Sake as Friday was just about farming Tickets.

Day 2:

Match 7 - top 64 - Allen Fluck - Unicorn - Keeper of Earth - Phoenix Splash

I hate the Unicorn matchup. I would be lying to say we aren't favored in this matchup. But I still hate it. Way to much gets left to chance some times and while I am comfortable relying on the insane level of power that is Kuroi Mori, going into a game knowing I will need it is terrible. I get a turn one palace flip, so things are looking pretty good for me. He hits Unholding authority and doesn't have an ambusher. I pull a captive audience. Game is kinda back and forth. Tadaka gets pacifism and I have no let goes. I am forced to use my 1 censure on Unfulfilled Duty to stop the 3rd break and keep getting favor. Next turn I draw no censures and am not sure I can save my stronghold. I get extremely lucky and he drew no captives. So I just break his stronghold.

Match 8 - Top 32 - James Wong - Scorpion - City of the Open Hand - Phoenix Splash

So here starts my Scorpion Gauntlet. My opponent being on Phoenix splash makes me very happy. His RL card being Forge Edict is also nice. All i have to worry about is 1 copy of I Can Swim.He is also the only Scorpion opponent to run Kikuyo, though she never showed up. The game is brutal on me. My flop and initial draw is terrible. I get one ancient master, 1 dop, which is normally good but I also draw all three of my Let Gos after opening Bid 5. My dynasty flop isn't much better. No dynasty bodies big enough to easily defend. So Turn one he wins an air ring for keepers after edicting my DoP and wins favor. The game of ridiculous attrition begins now. Turn 2, I get an ancestral shrine on upholding authority. I play Conflict Tadaka. But I can not for the life of me win a conflict. My opponent begins to get more and more aggressive. He is in full control. I have 0 cards in hand. He farms my upholding authority and even trying a couple times to force him to break doesn't work. But he is never able to get me to Sub 5 Honor. Tadaka is just pulling cards. My bodies, while potatoes and multiplying and his are shrinking. I finally flip a library and able to close card gap. 1x Kachiko and Miyako are already gone. I finally win a conflict. Next turn starts and Time is called. The last turn plays out and I am up on breaks, honor and with favor. I win thanks to time rules but as I hate the time rules still feel a little bad.

Match 9 - Top 16 - Erik Stenberg - Scorpion - City of the Open Hand - Crane Splash

This game is the exact opposite of my last one. I high roll like a mad man. Turn 1, he plays 2 liars with a fate each. I just pass. He gets 2 opposed conflicts thanks to a goblin sneak but I get a free break on Shameful with Conflict Tadaka and win favor with Ancient master. Next turn MoGT hits the table and I get an ancestral shrine. I get a hard moment where I hit Abandoning Honor and thanks to Mark of Shame being allowed with MoGT, I am forced to against the waves myself to save them. I then use the MoGT Ring to just break secret cache. Next turn I play a Shiba Yojimbo go to break upholding authority and he plays another mark of shame, I let my Yojimbo die. then I MoGT into his stronghold, 2 Ningyos and win.

Match 10 - Top 8 - Johnny Shen - Scorpion - City of the Open Hand - Crane Splash

Now my scorpion gauntlet flops back to my opponent. This game was recorded by the 6th Ring. Its another grind of a game but I actually felt really good about this one, I look forward to watching the video and hopefully having my feelings be justified. Turn 1; Hidden Moon Dojo is really upsetting. I buy Asako Tsuki no fate. He attacks air, goes for a break on my Manicured. Gossip's DoP ( I didn't have one), gets a Keeper. Plays a goblin sneak, I defend this one, Shen wins another ring. I use Against the Waves on Tsuki and Play an Ancient Master with 1 to tie favor. Turn 2: I flop Kanjo on Revels. Only time all tournament I see Kanjo. Shen respects the danger that is Kanjo, Goes all out to break it. Does so. But I win favor this turn. Conflict Tadaka comes out next turn and starts pulling cards, Hits Backhanded Compliment right away which is really big. I can't break the Hidden Moon Dojo though, and its on effective deception is very scary. He gets a third break. And while I am low on honor, I am still outside of kill range. I get a massive respite with Shen flopping Emperor and Favorable ground next to HMD. Uses Favorable to HMD flip another favorable ground. I get an ancestral shrine on a broken province. I can break the HMD and turn this game around. Its all kinda a blur at this moment. KM proves to strong to break and Dishonor is essentially out. Similar to my game with James Wong, time is called at the same time when I can break 2 provinces and go up on honor with favor. Winning again on Tie breaker points.

Match 11: Top 4 - Jose Luis Saenz - Phoenix - Dragon Splash

This match is on stream. No need for play by play. A couple decision points during the games was when to Five Fires. Was really tempted turn 1, I decided against it. Favor flopped back and forth. I five fires before losing it. I am unable to get the favor back after though and that essentially does me in. I am sure when I watch the stream and I can probably see some outs but honestly I am way to tired at this point and I am very much ok losing to a better Phoenix player. Saddest part is Jose's championship deck will not have full bleed Five Fires.

Concluding thoughts, I am shocked I made it to the top 4. I had limited practice since the restricted list changes and was afraid no about playing with no Embrace the Void as a safety net. Clan Arenas definitely helped calm my nerves and Fives Fires and little luck did the rest.

As always thank you to the Montreal playgroup for keeping me sharp and I will do my best to answer any questions.

Matthew Beck / Isawa Algahra
 Hall of Honor
Winter Court - Top 4 - Hatamoto
Date: 11/06/19 thru 11/10/19
Number of Players: 226
Location: Roseville
comment Comments
Congratulations, and thanks for the write-up!
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Keeper of Air
Increase your deck building influence value by 3.
After you win an conflict as the defending player - gain 1 fate.
Seeker of Air
You may replace 1 province of any element with an additional province while deck building.
After an province you control is revealed - gain 1 fate.
Keeper of Earth
Increase your deck building influence value by 3.
After you win an conflict as the defending player - gain 1 fate.
Seeker of Earth
You may replace 1 province of any element with an additional province while deck building.
After an province you control is revealed - gain 1 fate.
Keeper of Fire
Increase your deck building influence value by 3.
After you win a conflict as the defending player - gain 1 fate.
Seeker of Fire
You may replace 1 province of any element with an additional province while deck building.
After an province you control is revealed - gain 1 fate.
Keeper of Void
Increase your deck building influence value by 3.
After you win a conflict as the defending player - gain 1 fate.
Seeker of Void
You may replace 1 province of any element with an additional province while deck building.
After an province you control is revealed - gain 1 fate.
Keeper of Water
Increase your deck building influence value by 3.
After you win a conflict as the defending player - gain 1 fate.
Seeker of Water
You may replace 1 province of any element with an additional province while deck building.
After an province you control is revealed - gain 1 fate.
Support of the Crab
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on clan cards.
Support of the Crane
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend Influence on clan cards.
Support of the Dragon
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on clan cards.
Support of the Lion
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on clan cards.
Support of the Phoenix
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on cards.
Support of the Scorpion
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on clan cards.
Support of the Unicorn
Increase your deckbuilding influence value by 8.
You may only spend influence on clan cards.
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Conflict Card Type by Uniqueness
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Conflict Initial Draw Probability & Mulligan by Card
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Conflict Initial Draw Probability + Bid by Card
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Conflict Initial Draw Probability & Mulligan by Trait
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