A Magical Huffalump Resides Here: April 2014

A Magical Huffalump Resides Here

My name is Ed, I am a programmer. Just another dude with another blog. I like MTG, Open Source (more towards FREE software). I like sports, and eventually I hope to do business and do good for the world in general. This blog is gonna be about Magic The Gathering. Decklists and snippets will be posted here. It may lead somewhere or nowhere, as with all things arcane, that was bloody obvious =)

Sunday, April 27, 2014


This will document the long and ardous road to a Chesla trap =P

I really want a Chesla Trap. Mostly because the ZugZwang Tower is one of favourite sites in the MH map. I do not actually think I will NEED a Chesla Trap (I mean the area is a Lord area so....). But it is neat =)

Any ways here is the mice to be caught for the first map that I am trying (A few friends actually started an earlier one, but I was not able to join =P  you might remember the recent endeavor was the Varmint Valley which was full of posters, which counted as maps).

So far my partner in crime has caught the very Iconic Acolyte mouse =)

Uncaught mice

Bear Mouse
Blacksmith Mouse
Chameleon Mouse
Conjurer Mouse
Conqueror Mouse
Sand Cavalry Mouse
Magmarage Mouse
Effervescent Mouse
Flutterby Mouse
Icicle Mouse
Infiltrator Mouse
Mage Weaver Mouse
Magma Carrier Mouse
Master of the Che...
Mintaka Mouse
Mystic King Mouse
Mystic Rook Mouse
Ooze Mouse
Pie Thief Mouse
Swarm of Pygmy Mice
Pirate Mouse
Polar Bear Mouse
Princess Fist
Ravenous Zombie M...
Riptide Mouse
Seer Mouse
Siren Mouse
Stinger Mouse
Vampire Mouse
Yeti Mouse


Monk Mouse
White Mouse
Dwarf Mouse
Acolyte Mouse

Here hoping I get lucky, I think I got my last Limited Edition Map Trap (The Gauntlet Trap) on the 5th map... but for the Chesla, I've seem people go 60??? with no Trap. I hope I have extreme DLU. =P

[20140427 22:35]

I thought I should point out that this is the season two treasure chest limited Edition trap, here is more about the 1st edition which was "phased out" earlier this year =)

[20140504 22:13]

As of today, the only mouse left is the icicle mouse =)

Actually we were pretty quick having only this mouse left was actually almost a week ago. In fact it was still summer... we are currently waiting for winter to catch the icicle mouse =)

I also went through a  ZZT tournament, doing a triple run (at least I think thats what its called, where you catch both kings, and the chessmaster =)) TWICE within the two day tournament =) It was personally impressive =P

I managed to get my team to an 8th position, despite being 1/4 in terms of number of teamates being in the tournament. So have hope! To be honest however if any of the 4/4 teams worked harder, they could overtake me easily =/ I was lucky =)

The tournament had only 25 participating teams, so the cut off was tight, onky 12 and above would be in the money.

We had a slight issue with Princess Fist, I did'nt know it was random. One of my teammate says he has already ran the iceberg twice... I then caught it in a matter of hours (I happened to be close to the end of a segment and hit the general portion pretty quite. I was lucky enough to get the dear princess and caught her on the second hunt. And Riptide did'nt pose too much difficulty, since the tide flood and ebb cycle was complete within the day.

The other mice were done away by the team, one of the non-team but on map hunters cleared a fair bit, so that was helpful =) With everyone chipping in, we were actually done pretty quick!

So ... now here we are just waiting for winter. =)

Heres hopin' the chesla shows =)

Running the ZZT tournament, I realised I missed it and I knew its ins and outs. It was pretty much my domain... but alas it is not a place to stay for points now for my rank. Still the tokens are nice =) And I enjoyed being able to triple run it =) TWICE! no less =)

Happy Hunting ppl!

[20140507 21:34]

Alas this did not end well.....

8:36 am - Seasonal Garden

So I start off anew!!!!

Black Widow Mouse

Brimstone Mouse

Chameleon Mouse

Chitinous Mouse

Conqueror Mouse

Derr Chieftain Mouse

Sand Cavalry Mouse

Magmarage Mouse

Diamond Mouse

Dojo Sensei

Effervescent Mouse

Elven Princess Mouse

Harvest Harrier M...

Iceblade Mouse

Icicle Mouse

Infiltrator Mouse

Lady Coldsnap

Monk Mouse

Nibbler Mouse

Ooze Mouse

Pie Thief Mouse

Swarm of Pygmy Mice

Pinchy Mouse

Polar Bear Mouse

Princess Fist

Puddlemancer Mouse

Ravenous Zombie M...

Riptide Mouse

Stickybomber Mouse

Student of the Ch...

Student of the Ch...

Technic Rook Mouse

Tiny Mouse

White Mouse

Yeti Mouse

[20140707 20:55]


The Chesla!!! it be mine!!!!!

This was the 4th or 5th Map I think. This one was a Living Garden Map, before that I must have tried 2 to 3 normal maps, afew ardous a few commons. This was a common. All were upgraded with dust!.

The King Grub was the last mouse!

Can't wait to try it out in the Seasonal Gardens!!

Labels: , ,

Saturday, April 26, 2014

M400 Assignment Guide

Just some links to the forum guides =)

for myself really =P

First you must research the bait

Then you have the research to get the mouse!

Note that this assignment has nothing critical for hunting. You just get a snazzy skin I think =)

[20140427 22:15]

This is my current assignment to research the bait!

M400 Bait Research

Collect 3 Microchip Curds from Bark Mice 0 / 3

Collect 3 Cheddar Powder from Burglar Mice 0 / 3

Collect 2 Aged Grape Juice from Saloon Gal Mice 0 / 2

Collect 1 Nuclear Garlic from Masters of the Dojo Mouse 0 / 1

Collect 3 Gooey Gruyere Curds from Samurai Mice 3 / 3

Labels: , , ,

Friday, April 18, 2014


Mono black at the moment is the strongest deck. Note that does not mean it is the strongest deck possible =)

There is a big difference. Being the strongest deck possible means there is nothing in the pool that can defeat it. Which is rubbish of course. The fact that a meta even exists means that minimally cards that hate on it exist. But I don;t think we are even at that point. I still think decks currently in the meta have a shot at it.

Now building a deck that can tango with Black devotion does not mean making a deck that will beat it 100% of the time. Anything with a 40% to 50% chance of beating it means it is a deck that is respectable in terms of going toe to toe against it (in my books at least).

Is there such a deck at the moment that can beat it consistently? Personally I feel ... yes and no. Yes in that you have your 40% win rate decks, but not so the 50% and more decks. Not because Mono Black devotion is the best possible deck, but because it is (at the moment) the most tuned. It has the support of the masses and running it in a tournament is just a matter of tuning it right.

In the tournament won by a S.Korean (sorry abt not remembering his name), if you look at the side board as well , it was extremely similar to the one played by Turtlewald, but with more duress and a reduction of Bile blight and more Devour flesh. This seemed to be in response to azorius's rise at that time. The most recent win by the Japanese pro included artifacts that gained life. All meta tunings.

To defeat your enemy you must know their strengths.

What makes the deck tick?

It has first turn removal: Thoughtseize.

It has 2nd turn threat: Pack Rat

By third turn it has:

Devour Flesh and/or Hero's Downfall

For card advantage it has Underworld Connections

In tandem with that it has lifegain via Grey Merchant.

So there is a card advantage engine. This is relatively interesting. Against blue/white decks, their sphinx's revelation is a one shot. Wherea's the black card advantage is an engine. Less powerful in a short frame of time but long term is at least just as good.

There is also another reason the Underworld Connections is strong, that is that LD is practically unplayable except to stop corner cases of powerful lands. But that is a very minor point. (well depends on how you look at it, auras used to suck because of the potential for two for ones, by placing the aura on a land, it is as good as a plain ole enchantment in terms of risk, I used to joke that chronic flooding practically turns lands into Bazaar of Baghdads in standard)

At turn four, Mono black devotion gains Desecration Demon. The Demon used to be poo pooed because a fourth turn 6/6 is not so scary to an aggro deck going wide (horde of weenies as opposed to one big threat). Those days are kinda over (I miss my blitz deck hoho). Most decks do not kill at the 4th turn these days. Mono Blue Devotion is trying to do that which is also the reason why it has a relatively okay shot of defeating Mono Black Devotion, but not consistently. However Mono Blue devotion is no Blitz.

What do the threats of Desecration Demon and Pack Rat mean. They actually complement each other. A deck normally attacks wide (like most aggro e.g. blitz) or it attacks narrow (like hexproof auras during rtr/innistrad block). Mono Black Devotion can do both.

Mono black can hit you with a horde of rats or a singular evasive 6/6.

The rats are not as weak as they look (sure laugh at me for saying its weak, but before it became prevalent it was largely poo pooed by Mono Black devotion players themselves). The key is the 2cc. It looks innocous at 1/1 turn two, but it does something important. It skips below most counters and then grows if its pilot so wishes.

The best counter is essence scatter and now nullify. Dissolves clock in too late. And all this, is with thought seize and duress as cover.

This is actually Mono Black Devotion's strength against blue.

Against fast aggro, it has lifegain and Phat. Nuff said. (even blitz eventually fell to one card : the Armadillo Cloak pretender.... Unflinching Courage i think.)

Against ramp? ThoughtSeize, Doom Blade.. oh you haz hexproof, that sexy sylvan Caratid? Meet Devour Flesh =)

That in a nutshell is why I think Mono Black Devotion is strong.

1) It has multiple angles of attack in combat
2) It has natural strengths against various archtypes
3) it is currently quite optimally tuned

That is not to say the other decks are hopeless. That is never the case, but there is no doubt that Mono Black Devotion is strong.

Is it a bad thing?

Three Reasons why No!:

1) The current Dominance is more of a lack of people innovating other decks, too much group think.

I have a penchant for not playing the strongest deck, I always try to beat it. As such a dominant deck does not bother me. Many people like to have a balanced environent however.

But thats the thing, I do not think the current reason for mono black's dominance is the lack of balance but rather the lack of creativity.

Top 16 usually show more archtypes, people will poo poo and say, hey thats why they are not top 8: "because they are not viable". Well then, my retort would be: Well see, you obviously are'nt playing it, thats one less person tuning/developing the deck. Extrapolate that to all the people poo pooing and group thinking and just tuning Mono Black Devotion. Yes that is alot of poo. Nuff said.

2) Mono Black is currently pushed

Another reason why the current strength of Mono Black Devotion should'nt be viewed negatively.

Mono Black Control fans have been clamouring for a viable MBC deck for a long long long while. And WOTC has listened. Its really not a bad thing that Mono Black is being pushed. It means WOTC listens. (oh yes fear the coming of LD!!! Like poison, it will one day prevail!!!! =P)

3) The finesse of Balance

Another reason why the current strength of Mono Black Devotion (or blue devotion and u/w control) should'nt be viewed negatively.

There are two ways of achieving balance:

Make everything strong.
Make everything weak.

Thats really about it. Everything must be at same power level. It is boring. If a tall dwarf is standing in the midst of short dwarfs. He is still the tallest dwarf =)

What I am trying to say is, the moment they print something relatively strong, if the overall power level is weak, that something will unbalance the whole environment. Is mono black really that broken? Is thoughtseize really that broken? I doubt it is.

Lets say it is. So you really wished they would stop printing these Bah-ro-ken cruds that unbalances our sacred Standard format.

Would you rather they print weak cards (i.e. all cards are weak so balance is achieved)?

I actually know of people who would say YES! but lets put some other facts on the table:

1) Standard is rotating. Your cards last for about two years. During those two years, to remain relevant, you need to continually buy more current cards.

In short, it is a) Expensive b) Temporal

This is important. If you are rich then you have no worries, you like opening pieces of card board that will either be worth nothing immediately or will be worth nothing in two years. Good for you brother! Let move on! This article: it no for you. =)

b) Temporal is important because, EVEN if a card is truly broken, it too will pass. Into the abyss known as Modern =P

2) Your cards fall into Eternity. This actually ties in with point b above. Your cards will eventually be your arsenal in Modern (or Legacy or *cough* Vintage or EDH). Do you really want weak unplayable cards? Think Thragtusk. Hero in standard, zero everywhere else. Ricky Martin says: Do you really want it?

Now Why do I talk about balance? Because they will never balance by making everything powerful. If you are one of those who LOVE weak cards. Fear not!

They will never print a set that is balanced and powerful (by that I mean at least in Modern context)

Why? Power creep, less design space, plus how much can you print if you keep printing powerful stuff, eventually people will still quit standard if everything is powerful (its easier to print new stuff by varying power than to be creative laterally, this is a point even Maro made).

Strangely what makes people come back to standard is the printing of weak cards. Either to balance limited. Or, to have weak cards form the bulk of the set but have a few true gems, that is something that keeps veterans interested in new sets.

So you will never have, all powerful sets. So long as limited play exists and WOTC want to keep printing NEW sets.

What you can "hope" to get is a few cards sprinkled into the sets that have some power (again I am not referring to relative to the home set, but at least at the level of Modern). And hopefully slowly and painfully build your AWESOME modern deck. (yes I hate modern).

Hence in a very long winded way. That is why when they print stuff like Thoughtseize, there has to be less hate. Else if WOTC is listening, and we know they do, you may well get sets where EVERYTHING is weak. Unless thats what you want. Then we have different wants =P

If you don't likez the toys, mommy takes them from youz.


Stop complaining and git creative.

Gild is actually pretty potent. ;) not in Modern no. But Mono Black is standard no?

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring Egghunt is here!!! 2014

Well so it begins =)

[20140525 11:35]

And it ends.... =) 27th of May =)

Get your eggs at these links:


Labels: , , ,

Take the Magic: The Gathering 'What Color Are You?' Quiz.

HTML Hit Counter
HTML Hit Counter

Click Here to Advertise on my site
Firefox 2
//online countries Page Rank Tool
Support Wikipedia