Worlds 2009 UFS HOUSE Report
We get things started Wednesday night when the Michigan crew arrives, a tradition now from the last two Worlds. We play some 5 point games, watch Berserk, and discuss the Worlds meta.
We stop at a bear-filled McDonalds and then continue our trip to Indianapolis. Upon arrival, I pick up my badge, but Paul and Jon’s badges aren’t in the system. Apparently Paul forgot to order their badges, so he tells the clerk that he swears he ordered them and they end up just printing them out and letting him pay for the badges there. Once again Paul uses his powers of the mind to avoid long lines.
We say hi to everyone and then start doing decklists. At this point Jon hasn’t played UFS since US Nats. Paul and I had been playing with Death and Good since Nats, as we considered these to be the best symbols after the bannings. Paul ended up building Death Victor, Death Zi Mei, and Good Gill. I don’t want to run a mill deck, and Jon has played Victor some in the past, so we decided to have Paul play Gill, Jon play Victor, and I played Zi Mei as it nearly the same as my Tira deck. The first time Jon saw the Victor deck was when he started writing out his decklist. He decided that he wanted to have some Darkness Blades in his deck. At first I said that we didn’t have any on us since we left them in the car, but then I realized that I just put some in the trade binder. We took them out and put 2 DBlades into his deck. This would be a crucial decision throughout the tournament, especially in the finals. Besides Jon’s late addition, Paul built all three decks. He is a great wall deck builder, so he made some monsters for the current environment. The Gill deck ran 3 attacks, Zi Mei had 4, and Victor had 6. Pretty lame, but they get the job done. Man I’m glad 4 point is rotating early, haha.
The Gill deck was a standard Good wall/mill deck utilizing the Heel Snipe/Flashly Leg Work/Deadly Ground combo.
Victor was a death base using the Mega Spike/Reanimated/Mentally Unstable loop.
Zi Mei was a death wall with Fury of the Ancients and All Life is Prey as the kill condition.
Round 1 vs. Team Jank v2.0 or something (some Texans I believe)
Nowadays at the team events, it’s very unusual for us to play a team that we haven’t faced before, so it was refreshing to see these guys first round. I believe that we won the die roll and paired Paul against Felicia since he has so many anti-multiple cards.
Zi Mei vs. Terry – I win 2-0.
Victor vs. Zi Mei – Jon wins 2-0.
Gill vs. Felicia – Paul wins 1-0 I think.
Round 2 vs. I don’t remember where you guys were from, sorry.
Next we played the team that received the bye in the first round. I can’t remember who Paul played in this matchup. Maybe his report will fill in some of the gaps.
Zi Mei vs. Mignon – I win 2-0
Victor vs. Lilith – Jon wins 2-0
Gill vs. I forgot – Pauls wins
Round 3 vs. Team Mai Ragnar or something (Viewtiful Joe, Speedsta, and GeneralReaction)
Two Brits and an Atlantian make up our third opponent. I was 0-2 lifetime against Brits so I didn’t want to face either of them. Luckily they paired me up against Marco’s Sakura, so I escaped the Brits for now. Paul and Joe have a world championship preview as they face each other, except Paul is rocking Gill this time and Zi Mei the next day. Joe beats up Paul fairly quickly in game 1, but then Paul switches into Morrigan for game 2 and proceeds to mill him in like 15 minutes. I couldn’t believe it, record mill time for Paul.
Zi Mei vs. Sakura – I win 2-0
Victor vs. Gen – Jon wins 1-0 maybe?
Gill vs. Donovan – Paul draws 1-1 I think.
Round 4 vs. Team Tapout
We decide to draw and then go back to the hotel until top cuts time.
Dani gives us a pack of some old street fighter set for participating or something. I pull a Former Champion which I promptly put in my badge along with my character card.
Top 4 consists of Team Tapout (Shane, Chubbs, Hughes maybe?), Team British and Garrison (Matt and Kyle from overseas and Garrison from WI), Team NY (Osei, Magnus, and Noel) and Team UFS House.
James Hata performs deck checks and finds a number of errors. These errors would prove to be vital for Team Tapout as I think it was ultimately the difference maker in getting to the finals. Thankfully, I checked all of our decklists before we turned them in, due to Jon’s incident last time at Nats.
Top 4 vs. Hewitt, Ross (speedsta), and Garrison
I get paired up against the American so I know that we have a chance. Hewitt and Garrison each went in with a game loss, which really hurt them. My match ended being over in about 15 minutes due to my opponent’s game loss. During the downtime I challenge Steve to some Call of Cthulhu matches. I also got to meet Eric Lang, which was really cool.
Zi Mei vs. Felicia – I win 2-0 due to decklist malfunction.
Victor vs. Kula – Jon wins 1-0
Gill vs. Zhao Daiyu – game one never ends, but due to decklist malfunction Paul wins 1-0.
In the other match, Team NY takes out Team Tapout.
Finals vs. Team NY
Osei wants some revenge from Team Worlds two years ago, so we do battle.
Zi Mei vs. Sagat – I lose 1-2. The first game goes as planned and I do a ton of damage with 3 or 4 All Life is Prey in play. I was feeling really confident after the first game as Jon and Paul each won their first games as well, so we were up 1-0 across the board. Game 2 and 3 he sides in some Sardine Beach Specials and just throws bombs early. He takes away my hand with *** and wins the first match of the finals. I’m pretty bummed out that I lost in the finals, but I still have hope since my teammates were each up one game.
Gill vs. J. Talbain – Paul wins 2-0. Magnus left Paul at 1 vitality during one of the games, due to Paul’s Memories of a Nightmare saving him with its -1 damage reduction. Paul ends up milling him with the Flashy Leg Work combo. I get to see Paul’s last turn during game 2 as he ties up the finals. We then go to take a walk so that Jon can concentrate better for the final game.
Victor vs. James Hata – Jon wins 2-1. Jon won the first game fairly handily. Just as Paul won his match, Noel comes back and takes game 2. Paul and I walk off and by the time we get back, Noel is standing and everyone is clapping. Paul and I can’t believe that the match was over so quickly, and I started thinking that we must have lost since Victor usually takes a long time to setup his kill. Paul then asks the closest guy who won, I believe it was DaiAndOh. He says something, but all we can make out of it is “house.” Paul asks “UFS House?” and Andrew says yes. Paul and I look at each other and start doing what James dubs the “whitest celebration of all time.” Jon then runs over and joins us. We find out that Jon won by looping Darkness Blade and that Noel flipped 3 darkness blades in his first 3 turns. Paul mentions that he built all three decks. Jon says that he added in the Darkness Blades and it won him the final match. Someone then asks what I did, to which I reply, “I checked the decklists.”
We go to the Ram for dinner and celebration. Since we won teams, I decide that I will play my character card and Jon will play his for Worlds singles the next day. Jon grabs some pieces to make a water Jon Herr deck, and I fine tune the sideboard of my tri-symbol Matt Kohls before we go to bed. Paul will run the Zi Mei deck as that was the plan all along. I tell him that it has a great chance to take it all.
We wake up a bit late and hurry over to the con to fill out decklists. Paul runs his Zi Mei death deck, I go with tri-symbol Matt Kohls, and Jon does Water Jon Herr.
Paul’s deck is exactly the same as Thursday, except for some minor sideboard changes I believe.
Jon’s deck was a bunch of card draw with some laser beams, DBlades, and SBlades. I also found this Yi Shan damage pump action at the last minute that we decided to throw in.
My deck was this Matt Kohls deck that I have been working on since the bannings. It was mostly a completely anti-meta deck. It ran 17 attacks and just said FU to wall decks. It was made to just throw bombs and force the opponent to block. All of the attacks except 3x Ira Spinta were from set 12. It utilized both Knight Breaker and Dragon’s Flame combos. 70% of the deck shared 2 symbols with my character card. I had a couple cute tricks like Anti K and Manifest Destiny. Actually, it was pretty much a Manifest based deck. Otherwise the majority of the foundations were control check boosts to help me pass crazy combo chains. Lesser of Many Evils was also huge to get past control decks.
Round 1 vs. Felicia (Jason I believe?)
As I stated earlier, it’s refreshing to play against someone you haven’t met before, and this match certainly was fun. However, I really was scared of Felicia since my 18 life really hates Feline Spike, and my Realm of Midnight allows them to be played as reversals very easily. Game 1, he wins the die roll but I get him with a first turn Anti-K. I then build 2 realm of midnight and fail my third foundation. On my second turn I form with Realm twice and proceed to play Ira Spinta, Hades Axe, Midnight Launcher. He is at 11 vitality. I then go for the Dragon’s Flame, which would have been 20 damage, needing to check a 5 to pass due to the realms. I check a 3 and fail. He ends up killing me on my next turn with a reversal Feline Spike. Game 2 is a long battle that I finally win with some crazy Anti K/Manifest nonsense on his turn followed by a nice string of attacks on my turn. Game 3 ends in a draw after I survive his final turn of Feline Spike, Heel Snipe, Minuett Dance, thanks to me siding in Mark of the Beast.
Round 2 vs. Blanka (Ryken I think)
Turn 1 he played a couple Sagat foundations that allow him to play foundations from hand after he takes damage. On my second turn I throw Ira Spinta and he uses both Sagat foundations, probably thinking that I would just play Spinta and then build. I don’t think he expected my deck to be so aggressive. However, I then proceed to do Midnight Launcher and Knight Breaker and pull off a turn 2 kill since he has the 2 cards stuck in his cardpool. Game 2 is pretty similar, but it takes me 3 turns I believe.
Round 3 vs. Kyoshiro (goo)
Goo’s decks always scare the crap out of me since they are usually very well thought out and somewhat off the wall decks that I haven’t seen before. Therefore, I decide that I should just try and kill him as fast as possible before I even have to worry about what his deck does. I get him down to 4 on turn 2 but can’t finish it off. He then plays a couple secret projects and 2 Spirits of Athens. I decide that I need to finish him now before this gets worse, so I use Lesser of Many Evils and then need to hit a 5 check to pass my Dragon Flame which I was then going to make 10 speed with KFT. However, I hit a 3 check and fail. He proceeds to lock me out with Self Sacrifice soon after. I concede to go onto game 2. I get him down to 3 vitality after turn 2 this time. He once again builds up the Secret Projects and other lockdown pieces. I keep trying to build check pumps, but he keeps outbuilding me and overwhelms my Red Lotus. Finally he goes for the Self Sacrifice lockdown and ditches 13 cards (his whole hand) to return my entire staging area to my hand. I then use a ninja KFT to trigger Manifest Destiny and commit a Secret Project. He didn’t see it coming at all, and thought that I was done when he did the Self Sac, as time was winding down. So it goes back into my turn, and I could pass a 4 difficulty attack with a 5 control check. He has no hand, so if I hit a 5 (nearly 2/3 of my deck) I win and we draw. Of course I check a damn 3. That’s what I get for running so many attacks, bleh.
Round 4 vs. Kula (Kyle from UK)
Game 1 I get an early jump and just throw out a ton of damage turn 3 I believe, finishing with Dragon Flame. Game 2 he goes first and flips 3 midnight launchers in a row. I know that I am pretty safe for a while. I end up doing another turn of big damage getting him down to 1 or 2 vitality. He doesn’t draw into the attacks he needs the next turn, and I simply use my Matt Kohls form to pick up ira spinta to finish him off. I finally broke my losing streak against the Europeans!
Round 5 vs. James Hata (tychochamp – Noel)
Game 1 goes exactly as planned for me. I spit out a ton of damage including Dragon Flame to finish him off. Game 2 is completely epic. He gets some a bunch of negation on the board early and I struggle to get through it the whole game. With a few minutes left in the round, I get him down to 10 vitality or so. The next turn he goes for his kill with a single Darkness Blade. During my first enhance I use my Matt Kohls enhance to commit a foundation, preventing +1 damage with James’s ability. I also use the enhance on Realm of Midnight to get it committed too, preventing another +1 damage. Due to this, he can only pump it to 17 damage, leaving me at 1. He also turned off forms with Bringing the Master to his Knees, so that most of my staging area was pretty worthless on my next turn. I fail to finish him off, and am pretty much ready to die a horrible death, knowing that if he draws a darkness blade I’m done for. There is one left in his deck, but he somehow doesn’t draw it. He ends up flipping it partway into his turn. It passes back to my turn with just a few seconds left. Knowing that I can’t kill him, I hurry up and end my turn, giving him one more chance. Time is called at the start of his turn. He cycles after drawing 1 card. After his cycle, he only has 1 darkness blade left in his deck. We both know that if he draws it, then he wins. He draws up his 5 one at a time, face up to show me my fate. The Dblade is not one of the 5. He still has a chance to draw it with Hulking Brute though. He decides to play 3 or 4 foundations, finally responding with Hulking Brute to draw 2, and the Dblade still isn’t there. . .phew I survive by the skin of my teeth.
Round 6 vs. J.Talbain (dutpotd – Garett)
See dutpotd’s tournament report for further details. Bottom line – we each kill each other once and then decide to roll a die to decide the match. We each roll 20, then he rolls 17 and crushes me. No further documentation considered necessary.
Loss (1-1 + die roll)
Round 7 vs. Kula (gravelord – Thai)
Seriously? Two Kulas in one tournament, craziness. Game 1 he sets up a bunch of hand control cards like Military combat arts and KoF 2006. I go for the kill knowing that I need to finish him off in one turn or he is going to take away half of my hand on my turn, and the rest of it on his turn, and finish me with a Fire Kick. I start setting up my dragon flame combo while he shoves most of our hands into our momentum. He only has one card left in hand, but it’s a Trolling. He plays it during my second attack, to keep my dragon flame at printed damage. It caught me completely off-guard, I never expected to see that card during the tournament, it was pretty cool tech. However, I thankfully had a KFT in hand and negated it, allowing my Dragon Flame to come for 20 and take care of Kula. Game 2 he sets up pretty much like the first game, and winds up taking away most of my hand and finishing me with a couple of Fire Kicks. Game 3 is really bizarre. He gets too damn many hand control cards out before I can kill him, so I am forced to basically do nothing, but play 1 or 2 foundations. I know that if I play any deeper he will kill me on his turn. He also keeps some blocks in hand, and on it goes forever. With both of us essentially stuck, time is finally called during his turn. He tries to throw whatever attacks he has at me, using all kinds of ways to try and push them through including Kula’s speed pump and Anti’K foundation side. I use my enhance to make his fire kicks mid and full block them. He ends up getting me low but can’t finish it.
Well that was my 2009 Worlds matches, I think I finished around 32nd – not as good as I’d like to finish, but I had fun playing my character one last time. Now that I think about it, I keep getting worse and worse at Worlds haha. I’ve gone from 1st to 8th to 21st to 32nd. Hopefully I can turn that around next year.