Round 8 Feature Match: Eivind Nitter vs. Raphaël Lévy

Posted in Event Coverage

By Mark Wraith

Game 1

It was Raphaël who decided to play first in game one, and played a good early creature with a turn two Shivan Zombie. Eivind also played a creature that turn with a Nomadic Elf, which caused Lévy to hold back and not attack in his next turn. Instead he just cast a Nightscape Familiar, and it was Eivind who got the first damage in - bringing the Frenchman to 18 with his Nomadic Elf, and summoning a Sparring Golem.

Raphaël enchanted his Nightscape Familiar with Maniacal Rage, and cast Tribal Flames to remove the Sparring Golem, attacking to bring Eivind to 15. Nitter had a Magma Burst in his hand, but since Raphaël had to pay only one mana each for the Rage and the Tribal Flames, he had two mana open to regenerate.

Eivind also did not have a creature, so he held back with the Elf, taking three more damage. Lévy played a Volcanic Imp, tapping himself out so now Eivind's Magma Burst was amazing - taking out a Nightscape Familiar with Maniacal Rage, and a Volcanic Imp.

Lévy's next attack traded his Shivan Zombie for Niter's Nomadic Elf, and the Frenchman played a Viashino Grappler. Eivind was still without creatures, so he blew a Terminate on the Grappler, and an Exotic Curse killed Lévy's Cinder Shade.

Finally the Norwegian played a creature - a Thornscape Familiar, and in Niter's end step, Raphaël played Darigaaz' Charm to fetch his Cinder Shade from the graveyard and play it again. With only one Swamp in play he opted not to block the Familiar, retaliating instead to bring Eivind to nine, and playing a Thornscape Apprentice.

Eivind decided discretion was the best policy, and held back with his Familiar. Unimpressed, Raphaël attacked once more with the Shade, which Eivind blocked. After damage was dealt he used Death Bomb to take care of the Apprentice, but Lévy wasn't done and played a Quirion Explorer.

Nitter also had a Soul Burn to take out the Shade, and a Hypnotic Cloud to deal with Raphaël's cards in hand. Lévy was the first to topdeck in this position, with a Stone Kavu. Eivind immediately drew a Serpentine Kavu, but it wasn't enough as Raphaël then drew a Halam Djinn, attacking to bring the Norwegian to one. Without an answer to Lévy's horde, Nitter scooped and they moved on to the second game.

Game 2

Nitter considered for a while before deciding to force Raphaël to take the first turn. Still it was Eivind who played the first creature, a Nomadic Elf on his turn two. It wasn't till turn three that Raphaël drew a Forest to play his Thornscape Apprentice. Nitter added a Sparring Golem and between the two they brought Raphaël down to fourteen.

Raphaël retaliated with a Phyrexian Slayer, then a Stone Kavu to try and stabilize the ground. However, the Kavu didn't live long, immediately meeting an Exotic Curse, and Lévy was reduced to ten.

Lévy swung back again, and cast Mourning on the Golem, but the Frenchman was still without red mana. With Raphaël at ten, Eivind decided to attack with his Elf and give it Explosive Growth to deal seven quick damage.

The Norwegian had a Soul Burn in hand - but only two Swamps, two Islands and two Forests. His Nomadic Elf could channel two green into a black, but if he drew one more land he would be able to kill Lévy. Such plans were short-lived, however, as Raphaël killed the Nomadic Elf with Void, revealing Soul Burn, Draco, and Darigaaz's Caldera. Eivind drew a Quirion Explorer to produce the black mana he needed. Lévy had one turn to remove it or kill Eivind, but neither proved possible and one three-point Soul Burn later they moved to the third duel.

Game 3

Raphaël thought for at least a minute after drawing his opening hand for game three, but in the end he decided to take a mulligan, Eivind's upraised fist showing just how much sympathy he had for the Frenchman's plight.

Raphaël summoned a turn two Nightscape Familiar, which attacked once before Nitter played a Nightscape Battlemage as a Potential Blocker. Raphaël could only cast a Thunderscape Apprentice on his third turn, using its ability once before Eivind played an altogether more threatening Serpentine Kavu. Raphaël found his fourth land which allowed him to tap out for a Volcanic Imp.

The Kavu attacked and Nitter cast a Probe with kicker, which as well as stripping away half or Raphaël's hand, gave him the red mana he needed to cast either of his Magma Burst or Terminate in hand. Raphaël certainly chose the right number with his Void on the next turn, killing the Nightscape Battlemage, as well as stripping Caldera Kavu, and Soul Burn from the Norwegian's hand.

Even this would not be enough, as the Serpentine Kavu continued to hit, and Magma Burst destroyed his Nightscape Familiar and Volcanic Imp. Raphaël did not manage to draw a Forest, and died to the Kavu with six green cards in his hand.

Final Result: Eivind Nitter defeats Raphaël Lévy 2 - 1

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