Vault Tour Florence 23 - Archon

Tournament Report by Sérgio Santos (sdsantos)



J. I. Parker, Dama del Ácido (a.k.a. Dama)

Again I brought my favourite deck, the one I took to second place last year in Florence. I was worried I didn't practice enough against Winds of Exchange. Big recurrent boards are tough for Dama. But I was hopeful WoE wouldn't dominate this particular Vault Tour.


Round 1 - Loss (0-1

Pratiffi, Gilstell’s Huge Deacon

(Michele Pratiffi a.k.a praforge)

Opponent starts with Puzzling Trinket and Ikwijĭ Outpost. I had some good Dis turns making amber. Has to decide what to do with Poltergeist. I choose to use it on the Outpost, to stop efficiency and return one of my Infurnaces back to the deck. Michele played Request Donations to capture 2 on a Strange Shell, which I didn't kill it the following turn.

Next turn, he uses 4 pips to capture 4 more amber on it, and epic poem for 7, ending the turn with 11 amber. I tried to claw back into the game, having already used most of my Dis. Managed to forge my first key, while the board on the other side slowly grew. Then a Mass Buyout was played on 2 big boards on either side, but my opponent was already one key ahead. I ended the game with double the amber for my last key, but no way to stop my opponent.

Round 2 - Win (1-1)

E. Griffith, chirurgienne de Littlecenter


This game I was paired up with a player that won the first match. This was my third tournament playing against Vittorio, and I had lost to him the day before, for the WoE Sealed Alliance. He is always great to play with, with tons of banter back and forward. 

I had a good board start, and focused on managing his board constantly. Testament of that is that he played twice, 2 Vault's Blessings together, with zero mutants on the board. I took out Auto-Encoder the turn after it landed. And eventually destroyed the Fangtooth Cavern too, although it came later with all the speed. An early attempt with leaving Keyfrog on the board, allowed me to kill it without forging, and later purging it. His Infurnaces went after my Subtle Chains. By the end game I had to decide whether to control his amber, or push to 8 amber for my final key with Cutthroat Research and Thorium Plasmate just for the amber. It was the right call, he hadn't redrew Pismire and Vineapple Tree wasn't enough.

Round 3 - Win (2-1)

Ryo l’Antico, Apprendista della Città

(Luca a.k.a pive)

Another Mass Mutation with Auto-Encoder, slower at making amber, less board control, but with more steal and disruption. This time I had an early Zenzi on the board, to speed things up. Twice it was bounced with Tempting Offers, but I was able to recenter it again eventually. It only took me two turns to deal with the early Auto-Encoder, which was not too bad. I discarded a Rad Penny and Mark of Dis with Subtle Chain and Subtle Maul. Again with the board in my favour, and this time against less board control. That lead to a more favourable game I eventually won with some margin. He didn't see the Auto-Vac 5150 too.

Round 4 - Win (3-1)

J. G. De Vaux, Specialista del Turbamento

(Francis Clini a.k.a littlescorpion3)

A CotA rush deck this time. The opponent already knew my deck from last year. It usually likes playing against this kind of rush decks. But that Restringuntus scared me a lot, and forces me to not hand shape my hands like I need to.

My opponent started quickly with Logos, with Psychic Bug played/used two times to see my hand. Fortunately the Restringuntus didn't come right after. My opponent used Control of the Weak to force his first key through, and Scrambler Storm to do the same with his second key. But even playing from behind, I had established my board, and was able to discard and purge a lot of important stuff. When the Restringuntus was played I had answers in the board and in my hand, so I was able to kill it the following turn. Eventually there was no amber control left for my final key.

Round 5 - Win (4-1)

This one was sour. Opponent didn't show up, and the same was happening to a player next to me. The 5 minutes of preparation passed, plus the 5 minutes after the game should have started. I got an automatic win by no-show. I didn't recognise the player's username, but later in the tournament someone said it was not2night! I had talked with her multiple times in the tournament already, and was looking forward to playing against her in one of the events. Her explanation was relatable. After 4 rounds, there are already a lot of eliminated players just lingering around chatting. And since there was no-one was calling for the start of the rounds, it wasn't hard for you to miss it, unless you didn't take your eyes out of your mobile phone. We agreed to play this game later online, to settle the matter.

Round 6 - Loss (4-2)

Geir Tsong, Soldato di Cubonitido


I had played against this deck last year, on a side-event. It had been a very swingy game, that could had ended either way. I knew I had to use all my amber control for maximum value to be able to keep up.

I started the game slow, and the opposite of what I needed happened. The CotA deck rushed ahead, playing more cards and making more amber than me. My hand discards missed, taking out Dis cards when he didn't meant to play them. A crucial turn happened when I had both an Infurnace and Information Exchanges in hand, but the opponent just had one amber. I should have used the Infurnace anyway to purge at least the Timetraveller and maybe some other logos cards, but I didn't. Dorian went into a big Library Access turn, reshuffling his deck, and ending the turn with enough amber for his second and third key. I tried to claw back, but he didn't even play Shadows, leaving me without fire for my Infurnaces. I believe the game ended 3-1.

Final Thoughts

It was sad being eliminated on my last game before the TOP8, and against a matchup I had won previously. I left with the feeling I could have played better that game. Learning that Dorian won the Archon tournament the next day helped. Plus, I was the only loss Vittorio got in the qualifiers, and he made it to the TOP8. I guess my deck is definitely a competitive deck, and I wasn't just lucky last year. But there's still room for me to play better with it.