Deck Design Contest

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Deck Design Contest

This thread initiates a deck design contest.  All players are invited to participate.  Rules are posted below.  As the contest progresses, additional posts will initiate the judging process and will announce the winners.  This contest is not officially sanctioned by The Three Goblins.

Deck Creation Contest Rules:

Submission Rules:
1.   Players may submit one deck for consideration.  Submissions may be changed up until the submission deadline.
2.   Deck submissions must include:
Player name and/or Game center username (will not be posted until end of contest)
Deck name (if none is given, the organizer will assign a boring name such as “entry 17”)
Factions (e.g. Swamp/Fire)
Card name and Quantity (if abbreviated or misidentified, the organizer will make a best guess)
Brief text describing deck and making play suggestions (may be edited by organizer)
3. Submissions are to be e-mailed to  Please include the subject “Spellcraft Deck Contest Entry”.  DO NOT POST DECKS DIRECTLY TO THIS THREAD.
4. Submission deadline is April 10, 2014.  

Judging Rules:
1.   Shortly after the submission deadline, all decks will be publicly posted to this thread, alphabetized by deck name.
2. All deck authors will remain anonymous until the judging period has expired, at which time the authors will be revealed.  Other deck info submitted will be posted.
3. All players are eligible to judge by submitting deck ratings to  Please include the subject “Spellcraft Deck Rating”.  DO NOT POST RATINGS DIRECTLY ON THIS THREAD.
4.   Decks should be rated 0 (horrible) to 10 (outstanding).  Fractional ratings are acceptable, but probably not very impactful.
5.   Any deck rated should be played at least five times against a variety of opposition.  It is not necessary to play all decks in order to submit ratings – you may submit ratings on only those decks you choose or are able to play.  In order to maintain consistent ratings between different raters, we request an average submission receive a 5, with 0 and 10 reserved for exceptional decks.
6.   Decks should be evaluated on their general effectiveness – which goes beyond simple win-loss record as such records are highly dependent upon luck.  Elements of an effective deck include: effective opening moves, good card combinations, good utilization of resources (especially power points), flexibility in dealing with different opposition decks, and ability to recover from or avoid bad card draws.  Those rating the decks may choose to base their ratings on effectiveness in PVP, effectiveness against AI (in absence of AI advantage due to power cards or illegal deck construction), or effectiveness against AI (in presence of AI advantage), or some combination of the three.
7. Each player may submit at most one rating for a given deck.  Players who submitted decks may still submit ratings.  (It is expected a player will give his/her own decks at 10; these should balance out.)
8.   A rating e-mail can rate multiple decks; multiple rating e-mails can also be sent provided they rate different decks.  The rating e-mail should include the deck title and the rating (from 0 to 10).  Optionally, a user may nominate a deck for some special recognition (such as most creative, most fun, fastest, best theme, or any other category the user wishes to suggest).
9. All ratings must be submitted by May 15 2014.

1. The deck(s) receiving the highest average player rating will be declared the general winner.
2. The deck(s) receiving the most ratings will receive an honorable mention for “most popular.”
3. Other honorable mentions will be given to decks based upon organizer judgment, guided by user nominations.

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Re: Deck Design Contest

Entry Example

The following is a bogus entry intended to illustrate a representative submission format.  Again, please do not submit entries on this forum, rather e-mail them to

Author: Quintivarium
Title: Worst Nightmare
Factions: Swamp/Underearth
   4 x blood vapour
   4x necromages
   4x flesh golems
   4x death is inevitable
   4x mortality
   4x dark secrets
   4x kobo miner
   4x kobo summoner
   4x deeper darkness
   1x underworld elixir
   3x narrow tunnels
Description:  A deck designed to lose fast -- regardless of your opponent's play.
Play suggestions: Make plays to drain your own life, but try to avoid hitting your opponent with minions.  Use underearth elixir to grant elusive to minions like blood vapour you don't want to cover, then move them instead of attacking.  Recognize the necromages can use their special on your own units.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Great work QuinTino.
I shall be interested to see if there are any decks that I can judge as I do not have many more cards than my starting quota just yet.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Limited card selection is an unfortunate problem for this contest.  Experienced players (who have the cards) do tend to load their decks with rare cards.  

I certainly hope this contest will provide some exposure to outstanding decks from which newer players can learn, but it is hard to play a deck for which you lack the cards.

In your case, you still have a month to acquire the gold to expand your card holdings.  You probably still won't be able to play many decks, but you will have enough to build a great deck of your own to enter.  And if lots of relative newcomers like yourself enter decks, there might be a number of relatively cheap decks you can test!

Entrants take note: if you want to win the "most popular" honorable mention, you need to submit a deck most players will have access to.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Only one week remains to submit your deck.  Send your entries to:  Interesting decks needed!
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Last Day!  Send your entries to
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Because of relatively low participation, the contest is on hold.  I will be resumed in May.  If you have submitted a deck, your deck will carry over when the contest resumes (unless you request to be removed).  I will accept entries in the interim, but will resume requesting entries in May.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Now that we have a new update with wonderful improvements to the two player system, I would like to re-open this deck design contest.  Rules remain the same as in the initial post in this thread except for submission rule 4 and judging rule 9 (which deal with deadlines).  I will accept submissions until the later of June 15 or I get a total of 6 entries (as of May 25 I have 4 entries).  Judging will allow 30 days from when the decks are posted.

Goblins have graciously agreed to grant 1000 gold to the winner.  

Some of you may feel your decks are not worthy but there is great value in sharing interesting design ideas, decks accessible to players who don't own every card in the game, or simply decks that are fun to play even if they lose.  Do not let this contest die for lack of participation!  And realize, no deck will be perfect.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Last Chance!!  The deck design contest closes today.  I have met the 6 entries needed to proceed.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
The Spellcraft Deck Design Contest now moves into the judging phase.  All players may submit ratings for any or all decks.  Please e-mail your ratings to  Do not submit ratings on this thread.  Please include the subject “Spellcraft deck ratings” to minimize the chance of your e-mail being overlooked.  

Rules for rating decks:
1.  Ratings are numerical scores from 0 to 10.
2.  Only one rating may be submitted per player per deck.
3.  You may rate only some decks if you choose not to play all.
4.  You may submit new ratings at a later point if they are for a different deck.
5.  You may change rating for a deck if you clearly indicate the rating is a change.
6.  You may nominate a deck for an honorable mention by describing what the mention is for (e.g. fastest deck)
7.  Ratings will be accepted until August 1, 2014.  Should fewer than 12 separate players submit ratings, or should either of the two highest rated decks have fewer than 3 ratings (excluding their submitter’s rating), this deadline will be extended.
8.  The deck with the highest average rating at the contest deadline will be declared the winner.  The deck receiving the most votes will win an honorable mention for “most popular”.  Other honorable mentions will be granted based upon player nominations and organizer judgment.

Suggestions for rating decks:
1.  To keep ratings consistent between different players, please rate an average deck as a 5.  Reserve a 10 for one of the best decks you’ve seen, and a 0 for an absolute disaster of a deck.
2.  Because of the role played by luck and match up, try to play a deck multiple (approx. 5) times to get a good feel for it.
3.  If you do not own sufficient copies of every card to exactly reproduce a deck, you may use a “close approximation”.  Use your best judgment on when replacement cards do not substantially alter the deck’s play.  If you cannot match a given deck pretty closely, it is probably better not to rate it.  You can still rate other decks.
4.  Here is an example rating submission (for bogus entries).  Comments are optional.

     Deck:  The Big 0
     Rating:  0
     Rater:  Quintivarium
     Comments: A deck comprised of entirely 0 cost cards is a creative idea.
               Unfortunately, I can’t imagine winning with it.
     Honorable Mention:  I would like to nominate the deck for “Best Titled”

     Deck:  Spiderspawn
     Rating:  5
     Rater:  Quintivarium
     Comments:  Very run of the mill.
     Honorable Mention:  none

The contest entries appear in the next post.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

ENTRIES (Alphabetical by deck name):

Deck: Dead common
Factions: underworld/jungle  
     4 underdark worms
     4 albino slugs
     4 dreamfeeders
     1 kobo tunneler
     2 wall of stalagmites
     4 lost
     4 cave in
     2 burrow under
     4 saberine
     1 huge
     4 ambush
     2 posion darts
     4 snake pit
Notes:  This deck is comprised entirely of common cards.

Deck: Ill-feyted
Factions: forest/jungle
     4 deepwood ash
     4 forest dragon
     4 nobbling trickster
     4 faerie enchantress
     4 deepwood fey
     4 horde of animals
     4 giant constrictor
     4 hungry crocodile
     4 pack attack
     4 ambush
Notes:  Pack attack is the core theme: the primary strategy is to get three or four pack attack out together with a plurality of minions.  If this can be established (and the faerie enchantress helps summon pack attack), the deck is nearly invincible.  If pack attack cannot be established, the ash and constrictors can still often power a way to victory.  Be aware that minions trigger before auras and traps, so a constrictor or ash killing an enemy can create the preponderance of minions necessary to trigger pack attack, and tricksters will steal health before ambush triggers, so the combo kills anything.

Deck:  Lost at Sea
Factions:  Ocean/Fire
     2x Razor Sharks
     3x Aqualid Hunters
     2x Giant Voltas
     2x Sirens
     3x Triton Waveriders
     3x Triton Aquamancers
     4x Triton Hunters
     1x Triton Ritual
     4x Lost at Sea
     4x Lava Elementals
     2x Pyromancers
     4x Flamespike
     3x Implode
     3x Living Bomb
Description:  A deck best played against an opponent who has a lot of
big minions in their deck.  Lost at Sea is played as much as
possible. If you can use it early in the game, it can give you a big
enough head start to win the game.
Play Suggestions:  Lost at Sea is the key card in this deck and Triton
Hunter is used to call it back from your discard pile.  At the first
opportunity, play Lost at Sea and one of your 2 point cards.  Lava
Elementals are especially effective.  If you do not draw Lost at Sea
early, you're probably sunk, but you should use Implode, Living Bomb,
or Flamespike to destroy opponent's cards until you do draw a Lost at Sea.
Good counter to this deck:  3/2 or 4/1 cost minions (play the cheaper
one first, usually).
Reason you would use this deck: It's a fun deck that is quite cheap.
There are relatively few rare cards (2 Sirens, 3 aquamancers and 1
Triton Ritual), but all of them could be removed without much pain to
the deck.  The aquamancers are there more for the AI (who doesn't deal
well with them) than the PVP games (where they would be relatively
ineffective).  The sirens are in case you do not draw Lost at Sea soon
enough and need to block the other player's big cards.

Deck: Sea Floor control
Factions: Ocean/Underworld
     1 Deepsea Thing
     2 Sea Dragon
     2 Triton Warmachine
     2 Aquallid Hunters
     2 Giant Volta
     2 Triton Aquamancers
     2 Triton Hunters
     2 Darkling Assassin
     1 Primeval Ooze
     2 Wall of Stalagmite
     3 Ominous Eggs
     2 Calm Seas
     1 Sink
     2 Whirlpool
     3 Sunken Treasures
     3 Shimmerpearl
     4 Taken Under
     4 Mesmer
Idea:  The idea for the deck started with ominous eggs.  From there, I wanted good cheap,
effective, and elusive minions that it would target. Underworld doesn't have many of these. This brought me to ocean, along with the options for card advantage available in the faction.  
Deck Style: I knew this would be a control deck, hence the 4 taken unders. Despite the high cost and the fact that its target goes into the deck and not the discard pile, I like this card because it doesn't care about its target's health.
Effect cards:
     4 Mesmer: countering spells is a basic component of most of my control decks. I'm starting to value Mesmer about as much as spell net because it's cheaper and my opponent often casts spells that aren't much use to me anyway. Mesmer is also pp advantage every time it counters a spell that costs >2 (of course, it is pp disadvantage if the spell costs 1 or 0, but this tends to happen less).
     3 sunken treasures: card advantage. 3 instead of 4 because, while I never mind seeing one, I don't often want 2 in my hand. This card is in the deck precisely to give me more options; having two in my hand is actually FEWER options (in the short term).
     Calm seas for auras, whirlpool for spell immune minions (or others if necessary). 2 of each because I want to encounter 1 of each each game but never want 3 (diminishing returns).
     1 sink: I love this card but wouldn't if it didn't replace itself through card draw. It's effect will force a lane stall with a bigger opposing minion, break a stall in my favor with equally strong minions, or at the very least slow one of his minion's destruction of mine and/or damage to my life total. This effect is absolutely worth 1 pp, but not necessarily 1 pp and 1 card. In fact, looking at this deck list I am inclined to put a 2nd sink in (probably for a shimmerpearl).
     3 shimmerpearl: I like these cards a lot, though storm core is by far the best since it can be used twice. The way I see it, worst-case scenario is this card replaces itself by letting me draw a card when I have one left over pp, but it also often gives me a tempo advantage by letting me play cards costing 4+2, 3+3, etc.
Egg Forces:
     3 ominous eggs: only three because these are better played against a known opposing minion than in an empty lane.
Eggs targets:
     Aquallid hunters- I like their sink ability and elusiveness
     Triton Aquamancers - speak for themselves, but note that these are actually better played on my opponents turn, especially if the egg that hatches them is destroyed in combat and/or my opponent has already cast one or more cards, as this makes it harder for him to destroy the Aquamancers before I have a chance to use it and pump its health.
     Triton hunters - card advantage in recycling mesmers and elusive
     Giant Volta - useful against spell immune minions or others I slowly diminish along with Aquamancers/Darkling assassins
     Primeval ooze - its ability is useful, and it too is often better played on my opponent's turn
Other forces:
     Deepsea Thing for beatdown/elusive.
     Sea dragons for card advantage (note that taken under is the most likely target, by design) and beatdown.
     Darkling assassins for removal of spell immune minions and some card advantage.
     Triton warmachines are a good size for 4 pp, which allows me to play them along with an eggs, sink, or triggering Darkling assassin's ability. Their effect is also sometimes very useful against troublesome barriers.
     Wall of stalagmite to finish off a minion and/or slow one for a few turns.
Regarding the number of each of the forces: basically, I'm playing the number I do because I want to be able to use each of them; that is, sometimes I'd rather have an aquallid hunters than an Aquamancers or vice versa, and ditto for every other pairing of the cards in the deck list. To add more of any one would require that I eliminate something else entirely.  And because of the cycling I accomplish with sunken treasures, ominous eggs, and other card drawing, I can afford to play only 2 copies of most forces.

Deck:  Tritons
Factions: Ocean/Swamp
     4 Sea Dragon
     4 Triton Assassin
     4 Triton Warmachine
     4 Triton Waverider
     4 Triton Aquamancer
     4 Triton Pearldivers
     4 Triton Ritual
     4 Shimmerpearl
     4 Undead Tritons
     4 Rise Again
Description:   This deck is built off of the Triton Ritual Aura Card.  It’s a very powerpoint friendly deck, as getting even one or two of the rituals on the board starts to bring on free cards/draws.
Play suggestions:
     Drawbacks first – Not getting the Ritual cards earlier on is bad, but not catastrophic, the deck can still win if no Rituals are drawn.  However, this deck has potential to eat through your draw pile because you get so many free draws and free plays when the Rituals are on the board.  So while it’s a slim chance, you can run out of cards and loose.
     Sea Dragons – These bring the 4 attack.  Their special works in conjunction with Rise Again. If you have one of each of them in your discard pile, you can play a Rise Again, that will draw the Dragon from the discard, who in turn will draw a Rise Again from the discard as well.
     Triton Assassin – Not a great card, but it is necessary if you’re building an “all tritons deck” so here it is.  The special ability of -1/-1 to opposing minons is where this card shines, so even if your Assassin dies, they probably did some strength reduction along the way.  More effective if it comes out before the enemy so use it’s elusiveness.  Follow it behind a Undead to lessen the blow.
     Warmachine – This is the barrier killer, but also works as a barrier of sorts in itself with its 4 health points.
     Waverider – At first glance I thought this card was worthless, but with rise again, and the ability to draw it back in your hand, it makes for some interesting options.  The quick on this card  is nice to have as well.  This sometimes becomes a vip card because the opponent will ignore it to deal with Dragons or Aquamancers, leaving the Warrior to inflict damage turn after turn.  Also makes for a nice first-turn card if you don’t draw a Ritual off the bat.  If you do have at lest one ritual you can play two of them in the same turn.
     Aquamancer – I don’t need to say anything about the Aquamancers.  They are devastating just as is, but they are free to summon if you have two rituals on the board.  Even better when it comes back with 2 health points if you Rise Again.  Yes, if you rise again with two rituals on the board, then it’s a free 0/2 Aquamancer. Play the Dragon right after since you still have 5 power points and get your rise again back, you can see the vicious circle happening here.  Work nicely with the Assassins too for taking down bigger minions.
     Pearldivers – This is a card that shines in many different ways.  First of all it’s cheap and elusive, so it’s a good one-off blocker.  Next obviously is it’s special ability that brings back the pearls, but really, this is a card that generates power points when the rituals are out.
     Triton Rituals – These are the basis of the whole deck.  Sure there are aura killing cards, but they are few and far between.  Coming out first turn is a huge advantage, but the magic number is two. I’ve said it before, two rituals on the board means free Aquamancers, free Undead, and a free draw.  Three or more on the board and you are playing options/combos become almost limitless.
     Shimmerpearl – works nice with the divers, but not relied on for that. Can store them on the board too so you don’t go over your hand limit.  Doesn’t make or break the deck, but does provide that extra point when it’s needed.  My strategy is to use them to draw out rituals if I can early, and late to get an extra dragon on the board after playing a full hand of cards.
     Undead Tritons – These are the guys who kind of initiated the deck build as well, they were the only Tritons I could find outside of the water deck, so here they are.  Cheap (sometimes free), effective, rise again friendly, and the best part is playing them almost like spells.  With at least a ritual or two out, you can play them against minions just for their special ability, and have another friendly minion played over top of them.  Works nice against high strength minions followed with an Assassin or Warmachine, or works nice against low strength minions to make a safe spot for an Aquamancer or Diver.  I’ve played them back to back, and then rise again to get the one I just sent to the discard back on the board, and then played the dragon getting the rise again back.
     Rise Again – I think I’ve said all there is about this card.  It’s the only spell, so the Dragon will always bring it back, and it can bring the Dragon back.  In the beginning of the game it’s easier to know what’s in your discard pile, but late in the game it’s a gamble.  Not a bad gamble though as you probably have rituals out by that point, and if you don’t rise a dragon, you’re getting the power points from rising the Tritons.

Deck: True Darkness
Factions: Underground / Swamp
     4x underdark worm
     4x darkling assassin
     4x deepspawn
     4x kobo miners
     4x cave-in
     4x wrong tunnel
     4x bone dragon
     4x howling banshee
     4x horrify
     3x heart of darkness
     1x blood orb
Description: A control deck which generates extra power points to kill
Play suggestions:
     place your banshee, deepspawn or miners + heart of darkness as opener
     You can wait to place heart of darkness until just before your first kill
     Place big minions to conquer the path
     when heart of darkness are in game start to use the special abilities to kill minions
     you can use horrify and wrong tunnel to have minions change path to have them places in paths where they can be killed by special abilities
     always inflate deepspawn when it has health 1 or when it has strength less than opponent minion
 Side note: Special abilities become free or can even let you have extra power points when you have several hearts of darkness in game
 Combo descriptions:
a) Howling banshee and bone dragon special abilities
b) Howling banshee and darkling assassin special abilities
c) Horrify and bone dragon special abilities
d) Horrify and darkling assassin special abilities
e) Wrong tunnel and bone dragon special abilities
f) Wrong tunnel and darkling assassin special abilities
g) all killing cards/abilities with heart of darkness

Deck: Wizards of the Storm
Factions: Air / Ocean
     4x Archmage
     4x Aeromancers
     4x Chronomancers
     4x Uncontinue
     2x Energise
     4x Spell Storm
     2x Gravity Well
     2x Spell Book
     2x Spell Net
     4x Aqualid Mages
     4x Triton Aquamancers
     2x Sink
     2x Shimmerpearl
     Very fun deck to use, relies heavily on Spell Storm to inflict damage compounded by regular minion attacks. Variety of combos to keep you thinking and can triumph over larger minions. Possible combos include:
1. Archmage Energise (Sink) to counter minions big or small
2. Chronomancer Energise Uncontinue to counter minions, items, and/or auras that are menacing such as Pack Attack and other "Big Guns". Doesn't even need Chrono to Uncontinue Vortex
3. Aqualid Mages Triton Aquamancer to counter low strength high health minions
4. Once 4 or 5 mages/mancers are in play, Spell Storm to inflict massive damage
5. Energise can also be used on Archmage to move it after attacking to an empty slot to face an enemy minion for blocking or for continued spell casting.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Is this still going on? Did someone win?
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Re: Deck Design Contest

So far I have received two usable votes -- both from players who submitted decks.  This includes my own.  The two votes differed widely.  While I have been tempted to take the best average ranked deck just to wrap the contest up, I'm not convinced this is very viable -- and it does violated the stated rules for deciding a winner.  What do you think, should I go on the basis of two votes, abort the contest, or continue to solicit votes?
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Re: Deck Design Contest

I completely forgot about this contest... You should continue to solicit votes! I just bought three Chronomancers with the only purpose to test one of these decks. I feel such initiatives should be encouraged in the forum to keep it alive. Can I post my votes and comments here once done?
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Re: Deck Design Contest

Before the contest closes, I would prefer to have ratings and comments e-mailed to me at  This reduces the chance of comments influencing other votes.  After the contest has been judged, I would love to see comments in this thread.
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
The judging for this contest has been going on for nearly a year and I still have only four or five usable evaluations.  It is long overdue to wrap up the contest.

I will accept player rankings of the decks until June 17, the 1 year anniversary of the deck's posting.  If I have not received at least 10 votes by that time, I will disqualify my entry and select a winner based upon votes submitted and my best judgment.

I appologize for changing the rules, but an unending contest is fair to no one.

Should anyone wish to submit a vote, please email your opinions to
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Re: Deck Design Contest

In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Only two dats remain!  Get your votes in: email to chrisat@brescia. edu
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Re: Deck Design Contest

This post was updated on .
In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Results are in!!!

Winner: true darkness by Valentino (Valentino deRogat1s)
     4 first place votes (including mine) and liked by most raters
Honorable Mention -- the precursor award: Wizards of the Storm by jamges (James Gesmundo)
     Although not perfectly constructed, this deck is a fore-runner of the present, highly effective,
     mage and spellstorm decks.
Other Entries:
     Seafloor Control by Nate Shadeck
     Tritons by Bigg Balize (Logan LeeMasci)
     Lost at Sea by
     Dead Common by Mark Turner
     Ill-feyted by Quintivarium (Chris Tiahrt)

Thank you to all participants and those who took the time to play the decks and submit ratings.