The Best Way To Get Better

Do more drafting.

How Do I Get Better

The people who often win or do well in drafts are good at a few things. Knowledge of the set, picking cards, building a deck and playing the game. Each of these 4 are important and I'll share my thoughts on one of these in this post to keep it short and follow up with the others in later posts.

Picking Cards

When looking at cards I remember an acronym I was taught a year ago by Wayland. BREAD.


These are cards that win the game.

Sidisi, Brood Tyrant

A good example of a bomb I would pick would be Sidisi, Brood Tyrant from Khans of Tarkir. When Sidisi is out she does work. She'll create an army for me and start overwhelming the board. If my opponent doesn't deal with her, I'll win.


These cards keep my board presence ahead of my opponent. If I have creatures to turn sideways and my opponent doesn't, I'll win.

Wild Slash

Wild Slash is great in the current meta. It only costs {Red} and it’s going to kill morphs as well as many other creatures.


Sometimes in limited there are board stalls. It’s important to have damage that can get through.

Jeskai Windscout

Jeskai Windscout has flying and has helped me many times in limited.


I want to always have pressure on my opponent. I can do this by having mana efficient cards. I don't want an opening hand of all 5-drops. I want to be able to play lands and spells each turn making full use of how many lands I have in play.

MTG Aggro Play

This is a good example of pressure my opponent could be under. A potential scenario could be, hit with Heir of the Wilds they go to 17, then hit with Heir of the Wilds and Alphine Grizzy they go to 10, then hit with those two and Longshot Squad for lethal.

D-ud Cards

These are cards I avoid. Generally they are cards that don't have much impact in the limited format and shouldn’t be in my deck.

Ugin's Nexus

Ugin’s Nexus is a card is for constructed formats and should never be used in limited.

Additional Thoughts On Picking

  • Some other things I've learned is that limited is generally a creature game. It’s normal to have 13–16 creatures in the deck.
  • If I am debating between 2 cards and they seem to have the same amount of value added to your deck but differ in CMC. Pick the one that costs less.
  • Learning from opponents that beat me is important. If I lose to someone who has drafted a 5 color deck. I talk to them and have learned that in the current format 5 colors are viable if the right cards come together.
  • Mana for a 2 color deck is more realistic to get consistently than a 3 color deck.
  • It’s okay to splash colors when the bombs are worth it!
  • I need to be weary when I I’m thinking of picking a card that costs more than a 6-drop. These high costed cards will be a dead card for a long time and I may not get to 7 or 8 lands before my opponent wins.
  • I do my best to listen to pros, they have a lot of insight.
  • I’m still growing in my card picking abilities and continue to learn from great magic players. It’s a fun adventure to try and grow at getting better in the game.

Happy playing.


Trent Ellingsen (Software Engineer)

5 Color Combo Team

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A photo of Trent EllingsenTrent Ellingsen

Trent Ellingsen is a casual magic player going to FNMs about once a month and at least one GP a year. He enjoys playing EDH and often organizes game nights with his wife at home often. His passion for Magic led him to create 5 Color Combo and the drafting simulator app.

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