After a month long break Stage 4 of the local Store Championships finally arrived, I needed to make top cut and probably even get to the finals or even win it to get my win ratio back into the black. I was 4-9 going in (-5) it was 4 rounds of swiss then top 8, I'd need a 3-1 to comfortably make top cut taking me to -3, so yeah I needed to win to break even on win ratio this time.
Swiss stars well, sort of- First Opponent is using Royal Paladin Brave. I miss first stride, even with Hawk it wasn't worth taking a stride with the hand I had, and this was also while having to ride Great Daiyusha. I do set up a Luarel board when I do eventually stride, after the opponent has used their first stride, Fides, via the typical Earth play. The Laurel misses the mark and is taken out on the next turn with Opponent's Brave's being active while building hand. My response to this hand was to try and hit the PG or No guard from a very large X-Lead, it worked out since opponent did indeed PG, but it was cancelled out thanks to Linka. This got me some momentum going and fueled my in hand resources. The following two turns after this were Phase 3 Maxons. This match went to time and to the end of the 3 turn rule without either player being defeated outright. Ultimately it came down to who had the most damage at the end of the 3 turns. 4 damage to 5 meant I won.
Round 2 - Luard
In a grind game Luard has the upper hand with a toolbox which I hadn't fully studied and wasn't prepared for. Opponent play pattern of Aurageyser, followed by Doomed doubled with Beliel Owl and Swordbreakers led to amassing a huge hand, big enough even that an attempted Break Ride Legion was no passed with ease even if all possible breaks occurred. This gambit having failed I held back my other attacks from swinging face to starve counterblasts, this didn't work because retiring Abyssal Owl ended up enabling a Spectral Blaster of which I couldn't block both times so I had to take the first swing. What I got was a triple crit in my face. Given those Owls kept filtering back to the deck though and the deck was slim I guess it isn't really a surprise.
Dark Irregular Darkness Blade Wings came next, opponent missed their ideal ride and a stride turn but the first stride they do score nets a triple critcal, an attack I couldn't guard because my only real option at the time was a Sentinel and he managed to ramp the soul high enough leading into the attack to lock that out.
Out of top 8 chance and not able to close the gap between my wins and losses.
To top it off last round SGD Blaster 16 crit. I didn't even stand a chance.
End score of 1-3
Sub Total 5-12 (-7)
There's now only one stage left and I am left unable to go into the green. I can get into black and make my win loss ratio over the 5 stages even but only if the final stage is atleast 4 swiss rounds and top 8 AND I win every round. With how things have gone for me this season thus far I don't see that happening.
Personal greivencies aside event deck breakdown
2 Angel Feather
2 Dark Irregular Blade Wing
2 Royal Paladin (1 Brave, 1 Blaster Sanctuary)
1 Murakumo Magastu Hyakki
Darkness Blade Wings
The Murakumo player used to be seen as the "joke" player, with his recent advances he's now on his way to being a serious contender. Good on you, mate. :)
It seems my down turn is balanced out by another rising star.