(Metagame Archive) Josh Wiitanen vs. Sean Poestkoke

By Brian-David Marshall

As they sat down to play, Josh confirmed that two players had met during yesterday’s Swiss rounds. “Yes sir, and he smashed me.”

Sean nodded. “That’s only because he missed his 6-drop, though.”

Actually, Sean smashed everybody yesterday, piloting his Common Enemy deck to a perfect 10-0 record. The next best record in the tournament was 8-2. Josh was playing a deck that’s been dubbed UnCommon Enemy because it was tweaked to win the mirror with the hand stripping Iceman, Cool Customer and Pleasant Distraction.

Yesterday’s Swiss rounds were played as single game matches, but today’s elimination rounds are best of three games over 90 minutes. Josh prepared to take advantage of this luxury by properly caffeinating—he shooed back a spectator who came to close to the beverage sitting on the floor near Josh’s feet.

“I’m just trying to make sure you don’t kick my over my espresso. If I had to stall this thing another ten minutes for another drink, I might get the game loss. Come to think of it, I would take the game loss to get coffee.”

Game 1


Josh was greeted by a mulligan, but he liked his next four. “I got a monster,” he said. Josh had Boris and got in for 1, then followed up with She-Thing on the second turn. Sean did the same. Josh bashed with his She-Thing and flipped up Total Anarchy. “I always get that card against you.”

No 3-drop for Sean, but Josh had a Signal Flare to find the obligatory She-Hulk, Jennifer Walters. He bashed into Sean’s empty board. Josh’s Dr. Doom, Diabolic Genius flipped down his Signal Flare, and Sean looked glum has he played Boris.

“You had better have a ‘stadt, buddy.” Josh attacked, and Sean did have the Doomstadt to find Faces of Doom.

Sean was falling behind as Josh tore off large chunks of endurance without losing any on the backswing. “I think you have this one.”

“I hope so. I have two more Signal Flares and two more characters . . . ”

Sean fell to 29, while Josh remained at a hearty 48.

Turn 5 for Sean saw Dr. Doom, Diabolic Genius hit play. He flipped up Faces of Doom in response and Josh thought about his options, eventually opting to do nothing. Sean dug out the 6-drop Dr. Doom, Victor Von Doom and flipped down his plot twist. Sean also played Boris.

Josh, who got a game loss yesterday for forgetting to discard for Signal Flare, laid a She-Hulk, Jennifer Walters on the table. “I am eventually going to discard this . . . ” he said as he Signal Flared for Thing, Heavy Hitter. Sean flipped up his Faces for another 4-drop Doom.

She-Hulk took a tentative jab at Sean’s Boris, and he flinched back into the deck for an Acrobatic Dodge. When Josh’s Thing announced his intended attack on Doom, it was exhausted with Mystical Paralysis. That was it for attacks.

Josh claims that his deck takes the evens just for turn 6, and this was his opportunity to show why that was. All he could muster, however, was a 4-drop Invisible Woman, Sue Storm. “Damn you, 6-drop. You are so bad to me. I guess I should play 4-of’s on the Spider Friends characters.” He could not Boris for a Signal Flare because he did not actually have a Fantastic Four 6-drop in his deck.

Sean fired off a Signal Flare and called on the Hulk to get him back in the game. Josh team attacked She-Hulk and Heavy Hitter into the Hulk, and both players passed without incident. Thing and Hulk both stunned. Boris went back in Josh’s deck to cause A Death in the Family for the Hulk. Sean flipped up Common Enemy to draw a card, but let the Death resolve.

Sean did get to attack his Doom into She-Hulk to finish off the turn. The totals were now 26 to 23 in Josh’s favor.

Turn 7 kicked off with Sean’s Signal Flare for Thing, The Ever-Lovin’ Blue-Eyed Thing. He and Dr. Doom stood side by side on the front lines of Sean’s board. Sean used Mystical Paralysis on Thing and played another 4-drop to flip it back down. He also played Purple Man and activated it, targeting a specific face down resource. “That is the Dodge you played to get away from Doom, right?” It was.

Sean’s Dr. Doom attacked Invisible Woman and he powered it up. No effects from Josh, and Sue stunned. Josh cracked back at Doom with his Thing. Neither player lost any characters.

Josh Signal Flared for Silver Surfer and played him on turn eight. Josh activated his Purple Man again and giggled when he snatched It’s Clobberin’ Time! from his resource row. Sean had the 8-drop Dr. Doom, Lord of Latveria, and flipped down a Mystical Paralysis and Common Enemy. When the Surfer invited Dr. Doom to tussle, Sean flipped his Mystical Paralysis back up.

Josh looked over his board and decided to attack the 7-drop with Thing and Invisible Woman. Both Things stunned. Endurance totals were 17 to 10 in favor of Josh.

A Signal Flare from Sean on turn 9 prompted Josh to Have a Blast the Common Enemy. Signal Flare resolved, and Sean found his own Silver Surfer and played it. Josh Purple Manned another resource but made no play. Neither player chose to activate their Silver Surfers at the beginning of combat.

Sean sent Thing into Invisible Woman, and when he came across, he passed without any effects. Josh looked through his face down cards and shrugged, “I’ll take 4.”

Sean announced Silver Surfer into Dr. Doom, and Josh had to take a moment to think. He decided to use Mystical Paralysis on Sean’s Dr. Doom and then let the attack from Surfer resolve. Josh used a Dodge to absorb some of the damage, and he fell to -1. Josh sent his Silver Surfer over along with 4 It’s Clobberin’ Time!s to pound the Thing, and Sean nodded and began shuffling for game 2.

Game Two


Robert Leander had won his match and Josh shook Sean’s hand. “Well, whoever wins this match . . . good luck in the finals. Let’s make a deal. You play a 4-drop this game, and I get to play a 6-drop.”

Neither player made a Boris, and neither player had She-Thing or any turn 2 action at all. She-Hulk, Jennifer Walters came down on both sides for turn 3, but there were no attacks. Sean played his turn 4 Doom and chained it so he could draw two cards off of a face-down Common Enemy. Josh did the same, but also Signal Flared for Thing, Heavy Hitter. When Doom’s ability resolved, Josh reloaded the flare gun.

Sean suggested that Dr. Doom attack the She-Hulk, and Josh was amenable to it. Sean flipped up Doomstadt. Josh thought for a while and decided to Have a Blast! Common Enemy and Reign of Terror She-Hulk. Josh’s She-Hulk stunned, and he dropped to 46. Sean stayed at a perfect 50.

Thing, Heavy Hitter came down on Josh’s turn 5. Sean Signal Flared for Ghost Rider and played him. Josh announced Thing into Ghost Rider, but was stymied by Mystical Paralysis. Josh decided to keep Ghost Rider at bay with a Pleasant Distraction.

“Are you going to miss your 6-drop for once?” asked a hopeful Josh.


But Sean had a 6-drop Dr. Doom to supplant the old one. Josh Signal Flared for Silver Surfer in response. Josh realized that he did not have another Doom character and laughed. Josh exhausted the big Doom with Mystical Paralysis and played out his mirror match tech in the back row—Iceman, Cool Customer.

“That’s great. You didn’t draw him yesterday. That is pretty good.”

“Yeah, we figured it out when we were drafting Marvel Origins/Web of Spider-Man.”

Ghost Rider came over for Thing and Josh took 6, falling to 40. Iceman came over and smacked around Sean’s Ghost Rider, and Josh finished it off with A Death in the Family.

“Recovery?” leered Josh. As Sean began to count out all the cards he would discard, Josh counted along. “Is this going to be a record,” he asked? Sean ditched seven cards, which Josh claimed was one off his Iceman best of eight. Sean discarded one Reign of Terror and six characters.

Josh played Boris and found Signal Flare for Robot Destroyer. He played a second Boris and found It’s Clobberin’ Time!. Sean had Submariner for his turn, and it stood in front of the 6-drop Doom. Josh announced Thing and Doom on Submariner, which was fine with Sean. He took 7 to Josh’s 5. Josh then announced Robot Destroyer and She-Hulk into 6-drop Doom and Clobbering Timed the She-Hulk. Sean Finishing Moved the Thing with his Doom, and then braced for 12 from the unaffiliated Iceman. Sean recovered his 7-drop. The score was 20 to 17 in favor of Josh.

Sean’s turn 8 was a Silver Surfer hiding behind the winged ankles of the Submariner. Josh also had a Surfer, and put all of his men up front. Josh went to steal the initiative and Sean just sighed. Josh was incredulous, “Tell me the character in your hand is Doom.”

Josh sent the Surfer into the other Surfer, and Sean’s Acrobatic Dodge was met with It’s Clobberin’ Time!.

Sean nodded and extended the hand. “That’s game.”

The Iceman turned out to be critical, as Sean had been forced to pitch all of his Fantastic Four characters at the end of turn 6 and could not steal the initiative. His Surfer was looking at two Boris as he died.

Josh Wiitanen won the quarterfinal match two games to none. He’ll be advancing to the semis with his UnCommon Enemy build to face off against Robert Leander and his Teen Titans.


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