The Greatest Story Ever Told

Posted in Event Coverage on December 31, 1969

By Tim Willoughby

Randy Buehler watches Mark Rosewater’s progress at the top table of the Free-for-All Multiplayer event. Shh! Some people might already think that the Worlds coverage is over, what with the World Championships having been won and all that jazz. Those people are missing out on quite the scoop.

While it is true that the main even has been completed, there is still the final table of the Free-for-All Multiplayer event going on. It started with four tables of seven people each and now is down to just the final table, of eight. Now, free-for-all multiplayer where everyone can attack everyone else (at their own risk), is a format not sanctioned by the DCI, so it’s one that Wizards of the Coast employees can play.

By the time things came to the final table, there was just one Wizards employee left, one Mark Rosewater, with his Treefolk deck. Always keen to share a good story, Mark was keen to relate exactly how he had made it where he was, and the best bit is... it used a card that isn’t even out yet!

Every one of the R&D members that played in the Free-for-All brought a deck sporting one sneak preview card from the upcoming Morningtide set. Four of the five R&D ringers fell by the wayside, their cards having been seen by only a lucky few—who I’m sure will tell their friends, who will tell theirs, and so on.

The fifth, Chameleon Colossus, can be seen right here in the photo we snapped before Mark packed it away:

Now as a 4/4 that can get pretty big, the Colossus is pretty exciting. What Mark was doing with it involved more than a little math, but somehow came out the other side even more exciting.

Mark had a couple of copies of Loxodon Warhammer equipped to this newest changeling. This gave it 10 power—a nice place to start. Then, there were two copies of Coat of Arms in play. This meant that the Colossus got +2/+2 for every other creature in play. In multiplayer, with 21 other creatures in play, this turned the Colossus into a 52/46. Then there was the small matter of the pair of Gauntlets of Power in play, each set on green. With 54 starting power and Forests that each tapped for 3, Mark got to go just a little bit nuts.

Armed with a pen, paper, and a team of judges to check his math, Mark managed to pump Chameleon Colossus sufficiently large that after attacks his life total jumped from 17 to 55,313. If the math was slightly out, it didn’t really matter. He won that one.

At the final table, Mark was not quite so lucky. Things were decided, of all things, by an activation of Spinerock Knoll. Eric Snyder was sat on 13 life, having just played a Sliver Legion, with but a small amount of mana open. As it turns out, the gassy knoll is pretty powerful in multiplayer, and when one of his opponents took 7 damage, he was quick to cash in and reveal his golden treasure. The treasure? Coalition Victory. The only one who had a response was Mark, who had the Rootgrapple, but there was a Pact of Negation waiting for that, and when the spell resolved Snyder became the Free-for-All Champion, picking up a box of Italian Legends for his trouble.

Mark Rosewater and the ill-fated Rootgrapple pose with Eric Snyder and his winning ‘combo.

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