I was not prepared for SCG Worcester. I didn’t have a Standard deck I was confident in and didn’t have a desire to borrow a deck to jam through a lame duck format. I decided to go anyway for a few reasons. One, after moving recently, I realized that literally half of all my possessions, 5 of 10 moving boxes, were filled with Magic cards. I decided I didn’t need that many cards and started to purge my collection of garbage bulk commons and uncommons. I put together 13,000 cards to sell on the Thursday before the event. While Star City Games doesn’t offer the best deal on bulk, they pay $3 per 1,000 as opposed to other vendors who will sometimes buy at $4-$5, they are always buying it. Rather than wait for my next opportunity, I opted to get rid of my junk now.IMG_0788

Two, they were offering Two Headed Giant events on both Saturday and Sunday. While the EV of these events was very low, I can’t help myself when it comes to 2HG. I really enjoy playing with Erica, my teammate on Team Tunnel Ignus, and have come to love some of the idiosyncrasies of the format. I love the cooperative nature of the game, the power differences of cards in a multiplayer format (Managorger Hydra I’m looking at you), and the fact that no understands the power of the draw and always opts to play first.

Third, I wanted to play Modern. With the Modern PPTQ season ending, I’ve found myself yearning for more opportunities to Summer Bloom into Primeval Titan. I knew the Modern IQ on Sunday would provide me with at least eight rounds of bouncing lands, casting Hive Mind, and frustrating opponents. I couldn’t pass that up. Oh yeah, and I also really wanted to show off the shirt my brother got me for my birthday.


“Cowards Can’t Block Warriors”

On Saturday morning, Erica, Tim (#TimFayMagicCelebrity), and I headed to Worcester in a rented van that was entirely too big for the three of us. Upon arriving at the venue, I sold 50 pounds of Magic cards, bought the rest of the stuff I needed to finish Gifts Tron, and then left to go get brunch. After Yelping “Bloody Mary”, Erica and I found our way to Armsby Abbey which was a short walk from the DCU center. This place was amazing and  worth the 45 minute drive from Boston even without the guise of a giant Magic Tournament. They are the only bar to carry Vermont’s mythic Hill Farmstead brews in Massachusetts and have a constantly changing menu of delicious food from local farms. We ended up going back later that night for dinner.


After getting back we watched Tim in the featured match area cast two Villainous Wealth against his Abzan Aggro opponent for 11. Unfortunately, he mulliganed to five in the next game, and fell victim to the aggro deck’s vicious curve in game three. That’s okay Tim, you’re still my favorite Magic Celebrity.


Erica and I killed some time playing Modern and then joined the 2PM Two-Headed Giant Event. After spreading out the cards and finding two Sphinxes Tutelage in the pool, I reveled at the fact that I would finally be able to mill out opponents in limited. Erica put together a very reasonable RG deck with Managorger Hydra, Outland Colossus, and Chandra’s Ignition (Remix) and I milled about for a while trying to figure out whether to pair Blue with White or Black. The black cards ended up fitting the curve a bit better and even offered up two Returned Centaurs for the mill plan. Here are our decks:



We finished 3-1. Winning one game on the mill plan, one game on Managorger Hydra being huge, and one game to our opponents playing far too aggressively and using their removal on stuff like Yeva’s Forcemage and Maritime Guard. Our one loss came down to the fact that I did not play Aspiring Aeronaut after a Displacement Wave totally reset the board. While I had exactly enough to Dreadwater one opponent out of the the game the following turn, they were able to Mighty Leap an Iroa’s Champion over our blockers and kill us.

3-1 was good enough for 3 packs each.

At some point Nik met up with us and we left the DCU Center for greener pastures. Namely back to Armsby Abbey.


Since Erica got a corporate discount on a hotel room right next to the event venue, we spent the rest of the night jamming games on a hotel desk wedged in between the two queen beds.

The next morning was Modern, I registered this:

Amulet Bloom

LANDS (27)
 Simic Growth Chamber
 Gemstone Mine
 Tendo Ice Bridge
 Tolaria West
 Gruul Turf
 Selesnya Sanctuary
 Khalni Garden
 Boros Garrison
 Golgari Rot Farm
 Radiant Fountain
 Slayers’ Stronghold
 Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion
 Temple of Mystery
 Cavern of Souls

 Primeval Titan
 Azusa, Lost but Seeking
Dragonlord Dromoka

 Serum Visions
 Summer Bloom
 Summoner’s Pact
 Ancient Stirrings
 Pact of Negation
 Slaughter Pact

 Amulet of Vigor
 Hive Mind

 Leyline of Sanctity
 Seal of Primordium
 Engineered Explosives
Ghost Quarter
Bojuka Bog
Hornet Queen
Nature’s Claim

I have been playing this exact 75 for a few months now with just a few minor changes for this event. In the main, I replaced one [casthaven]Thragtusk[/casthaven] with one [casthaven]Dragonlord Dromoka[/casthaven]. Bloom Titan has one flex slot where I’ve seen players run [casthaven]Simian Spirit Guide[/casthaven], [casthaven]Thragtusk[/casthaven], [casthaven]Sleight of Hand[/casthaven], and [casthaven]Dragonlord Dromoka[/casthaven]. I opted to give the Dragonlord a try after seeing it suggested in r/spikes. After the event, I’m not entirely sold on the card. I don’t think it underperformed per se, but it doesn’t make any bad match-ups better (Infect, Twin, Storm) and just solidifies the already reasonable ones (Burn, Grixis Control, Jund). In the sideboard I took out one [casthaven]Chromatic Lantern[/casthaven] and one basic [casthaven]Forest[/casthaven] for one [casthaven]Bojuka Bog[/casthaven] and one [casthaven]Nature’s Claim[/casthaven]. The Lantern + additional basic plan was for decks that could play [casthaven]Blood Moon[/casthaven] but in practice I found it to be a little too cute. Local player Bobby Fortanely suggested [casthaven]Bojuka Bog[/casthaven] as an additional way to combat Snapcaster/Tasigur decks while also being a trump against [casthaven]Living End[/casthaven] and the occasional Loam/Dredge deck. The card was very good the entire day. Thanks Bobby. The [casthaven]Nature’s Claim [/casthaven]was just something I wanted to try out. Often against Twin, they will go for the combo against you without counter backup since Bloom has so few ways of interacting. I wanted to be able to blow up [casthaven]Splinter Twin[/casthaven] and [casthaven]Blood Moon[/casthaven] without having to show them that I have a [casthaven]Seal of Primordium[/casthaven] in play.

I went 6-3. I beat Affinity, 2 Grixis Control, Bant Company, Tron, and Lantern Control. I lost to Affinity, Grixis Delver, and Zoo. The fact that I lost to Zoo was embarrassing as it’s probably a 70-30 match-up in Blooms favor. Otherwise, my games were pretty reasonable and I was thankful I never ran into Twin over the course of the day.

Despite going 6-3, I finished 34th place. Just out range of top 32 which cashed the event. Tim and Nik also just missed top 32 so we went out after for a commiserative drink at the Mexican place across the street. Though I wasn’t happy about missing top 32, the weekend itself was fantastic. SCG ran a great event, I have wonderful friends, Armsby Abbey is amazing, and Bloom Titan is still super fun to play.


PS—Cowards still can’t block warriors.


At age 15, while standing in a record store with his high school bandmates, Shawn Massak made the uncool decision to spend the last of his money on a 7th edition starter deck (the one with foil [casthaven]Thorn Elemental[/casthaven]). Since that fateful day 11 years ago, Shawn has decorated rooms of his apartment with MTG posters, cosplayed as [casthaven]Jace, the Mindsculptor[/casthaven], and competes with LSV for the record of most islands played (lifetime). When he’s not playing Magic, Shawn works as a job coach for people with disabilities and plays guitar in an indie-pop band.

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