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Draconic Muralists

#1 Mythic Rank Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate Draft Exercise

Follow this Alchemy Horizons: Baldur's Gate draft and deckbuilding exercise with #1 Mythic ranked limited player Dafore, and level up your game!

Hello there! I’m Dafore, the current #1 ranked Mythic limited player on MTG Arena and I’m going to walk you through a simple draft exercise that I do that’s going to take your drafting to the next level. We are going to be using our brainpower in this one rather than relying on tier lists or data alone. While I think those tools are great shortcuts for beginners, they won’t really lift you out of mediocracy.

I always bring up the importance of deckbuilding in my coaching sessions. By that I mean deckbuilding during the actual draft portion, not just trimming down to 23 playables afterwards. To break this down even further, you want to evaluate your current pick while taking into account cards that you have already drafted and acknowledge the potential future scenarios.

One of the biggest mistakes an average drafter makes is always picking up the best card in a vacuum according to data or tier list without considering how they are building their deck until after the draft is over. This will lead to missing out on picking up some less powerful* niche synergy cards that will really optimize their 40 or wasting picks on cards that will get cut in the end anyhow.

* I refer here to the power level according to what the data suggests. A card should still be evaluated every pick separately in relation to past and potential future picks.

This brings us to the simple exercise that will really help to implement this concept into your drafting. I came up with 2 questions that we are going to ask ourselves every single pick. The answers will be arguments that will convince us to pick a certain card over others. The 2 questions are:

  1. HOW DOES THIS CARD PAIR UP WITH OUR PAST PICKS?
  2. WHAT IS THE POTENTIAL OF THIS CARD WITH OUR FUTURE PICKS?

With our 1st pick we always start with the 2nd question since we don’t have anything to compare the cards to. The answers are wide open here but we should definitely look into the sole power level of the cards and take into account which options get us into the best archetypes in the format. The deeper into the draft we are the more emphasis we give to the first question since there is less chance and guarantee that we are going to see the cards that we want. In pack 3 we stop speculating all together and focus on picks that would improve our current situation.

It’s going to be way easier to understand this with an actual example. Let’s go through some early, mid and late picks from one of my drafts asking ourselves those two questions.

Pack 1 Pick 1

I narrow down my options to what I consider the best cards in the pack or potential core pieces of a certain archetype. I think Signature Spells and Draconic Muralists are slightly stronger than anything else here with any of the black cards as a follow up.

1) HOW DOES THIS CARD PAIR UP WITH OUR PAST PICKS?

N/A

2) WHAT IS THE POTENTIAL OF THIS CARD WITH OUR FUTURE PICKS?

With the recent changes Signature Spells pairs up with You Come to a River as a soft lock in the same color. The combo is way more viable now when the format has slowed down. We would preferably want to end up in a U/B control build with that pick since black gives you the best options for 3 drop spells.

Green is in my opinion the best color in the set after the Alchemy changes. Draconic Muralists is a 2 for 1 if we pick up any other dragon. That doesn’t seem like a hard task and it’s going to be good in any green archetype. This pick leaves us more open than Signature Spells would.

You see how we are already considering multiple directions just by acknowledging what exists in the format. Ultimately I convinced myself to take Draconic Muralists because it leaves us open for more outcomes.

Pack 1 Pick 2

We just don’t get enough time to break down every single card during a draft. I’d recommend you to narrow your selection to a few stronger options. A lot will come down to evaluating the cards correctly and not missing out on context applications. Here I am deciding between Red Dragon or Deadly Dispute.

1) HOW DOES THIS CARD PAIR UP WITH OUR PAST PICKS?

Draconic Muralists finds the Red Dragon but considering possible Archetypes I like B/G over G/R.

2) WHAT IS THE POTENTIAL OF THIS CARD WITH OUR FUTURE PICKS?

Similar logic applies for our future picks here. I’d rather be in G/B than R/G and the power level of the cards are very similar in my opinion. Deadly Dispute will help facilitate a splash. Taking a cheaper card will also leave more room for maneuvering the draft later.

Let’s fast forward to the middle of the pack where the options narrow down and those questions become way more important.

Pack 1 Pick 6

I’m looking at second Kagha, Shadow Archdruid, first A-Circle of the Land Druid or Band Together as our first piece of removal.

1) HOW DOES THIS CARD PAIR UP WITH OUR PAST PICKS?

Kagha, Shadow Archdruid is not that great on her own with no self-mill or other ways to trigger it without attacking. I’m hesitant to pick the second copy because we need enablers first.

A-Circle of the Land Druid is exactly what we need to make our first Kagha better. Synergy! We’re also looking for a decent curve here and good 2 drops are the most important core of any limited deck.

Band Together is a removal that we need to pick up eventually. It’s still early in the draft though.

2) WHAT IS THE POTENTIAL OF THIS CARD WITH OUR FUTURE PICKS?

A-Circle of the Land Druid is such an important piece of a self-mill archetype and we are in the right colors for it. Reanimation spells, Druidic Ritual, and Sarevok the Usurper are just a few potential picks that get better with that Druid in the deck.

You see how the last argument made the decision really obvious.

We are now at the beginning of pack 3 and because of a few really late Patriar's Humiliations in last pack, I switched into Green White.

Pack 3 Pick 2

Here, you don’t ask yourself any questions and just take the rare bomb that got passed to us.

Pack 3 Pick 6

Now this pick is such a good example of why deck building during the draft portion is so important. We are at late stages of the draft so we are mostly just looking to fine tune our deck into one great playable unit. While Blessed Hippogriff or Owlbear are in my opinion stronger cards I end up taking Soldiers of the Watch.

1) HOW DOES THIS CARD PAIR UP WITH OUR PAST PICKS?

We are really lacking 2 drops and our curve doesn’t look great at all. I’m looking at all the Patriar's Humiliations and they will not be great without a board presence. We need to make sure we play creatures on curve. A 2 drop is something that will just make our deck better as a whole here.

2) WHAT IS THE POTENTIAL OF THIS CARD WITH OUR FUTURE PICKS?

N/A

Final Deck

This is the deck that I ended up with.

The whole draft can be found here: https://www.17lands.com/draft/1674670a5b3d4edf96e98523cf804d75

If you want to see more of these types of walkthroughs for Dominaria United limited, let us know in the comments below!

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Dafore
Dafore

Punk rocker and MTG Arena streamer. Twitch Partner. Member of the Draft Lab. Metafy Coach.

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