Let’s Come to Term with Something

I’m not one of the great Magic Players of all time. It’s a fact. After 17 years of experience with this game. It’s not the end of the world. Maybe I’ll be known as one of the great storytellers of the game… maybe I’ll prove myself wrong and something will click and I’ll be awesome (Fat Chance). I’m luckier than I am good. I top deck a far amount, and when I’m running hot there’s very little anyone can do to slow me down. That’s Magic, though. And with the hot comes the cold. The last few weeks of Monday Night Legacy and Tuesday Night Modern I’ve been taking my licks. Legacy is like that from time to time. It’s very match up dependent and right now it’s not the best meta for Delver decks at 20ss. Modern, on the other hand, has been a wreck. Two weeks of 1-3 records. Thats a kick to the face. One week I switch my deck and play all UWR Control. I went 2-2 but it was a hard fight. Then the next week I prepare for that match up, and see nothing of the sort. I’m in a slump.

There I said it

Magic slumps are the worst. You begin to question your dedication and intelligence. That’s part of my experience with the game. I spiral for a few tourneys then I focus on learning what I can from my mistakes. Sometimes you can over meta the metagame. It’s incredibly frustrating. If you’re not careful you can become over sensitive to queues and go too deep. I’m certainly guilty of that. I’ve built sideboards that are so focused on a couple decks that they are barely useful against the rest of it.

On Burning Away the Bad Habits

Losing is a hard way to learn, but really its the only way. I’m no spring chicken, so I’ve learned to take the good streaks with the bad. These slumps are normally followed by a hot streak and over the course of my career the hot streaks get longer and the cold ones get shorter. One solace I take from all this is that I’m playing with a very competitive meta, Limited, Legacy, and Modern are no cakewalk where I play.

But Let’s Focus on the Truth

Another thing I’ve learned in my slumps is that it’s not the decks, it’s me. I’m the one that makes the decisions, from the plays to the actual decks I choose. Its not the metagame thats bringing me down. It’s me. If I stick to the same deck every week I’m likely to see some sort of return for my loyalty, but thats just not my style. It’s important to me that my opponent has to guess what I’m playing when we sit down. Robert Pompa once said to me, “You must have the most played Scalding Tarns on the East Coast, they’re in every deck you play.” He’s right you know. 90% of the decks I run are 4 Tarns and 56 other cards. After that its pretty much anyone’s guess.

When Life Hands you Rituals and Cantrips…

What does this all mean? Well it’s time I made a couple of changes. I’m going to stick to one deck for a few weeks in Modern. The Metagame does not shift around me, and I shouldn’t shift around it. Its that sort of knee jerk reaction to losing that is really my folly. If I learn to be consistent, I think I might have a better chance at not sitting through these slumps feeling like variance is my only out.

This weekend I’ll be trying my luck at the 20ss Vintage Tourney for the Eternal League. I’m still tweaking my deck but I think I might just surprise some folks with my brew. I’ll update Twitter as far as my Deck choice and how I’m doing on Sat. Follow me, I might do something broken.


Zac Clark, @DurdleMagus

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