Goldfish Draft

A Magic: The Gathering format, by Steven Irrgang, with help from the Comic Irregulars



Attack with all creatures. Flamerush Rider trigger puts an additional two copies of Doubling Season (which is animated with Opalescence) into play.
No blocks. Combat damage, deal 7617. Draw 734 cards off Glint-Eye Nephilim, putting an additional 5872 +1/+1 counters on Chasm Skulker.
Exile one card to Cadaverous Bloom for BB, tap two Plains for WW.
(In end of combat phase) Cast Second Sunrise from the top of the library, doubled by Melek, Izzet Paragon.
In response, sacrifice Cadaverous Bloom, Gravecrawler, Flamerush Rider, Melek, Izzet Paragon and (last) Falkenrath Noble to Nantuko Husk.
Falkenrath Noble triggers 6 times, gaining six life, in turn triggering Archangel of Thune 6 times putting a total of 48 extra +1/+1 counters on each creature.
Sacrifice Chasm Skulker, putting a total of 55952 Squid tokens into play.
Copy of Second Sunrise resolves.
Sacrifice 55952 Squid tokens...

Welcome to Goldfish Draft - a play format for Magic: The Gathering.

The preceding was an excerpt from turn two of one of my games (which I didn't win). So what is this ridiculous format? You may be familiar with the idea of "goldfish testing" a deck, where you play it against an opponent who does nothing, to see how fast it can kill. Okay, but of course it depends how well you draw. We decided to turn it up a level and ask "What if you had the perfect draw?"

So we decided to stack the deck. Of course, it's easy enough to make a deck that can make a turn-1 kill, or even win on the play during the opponent's upkeep, with a stacked deck. So we decided to turn it up another level, and ask: "What if the goldfish opponent doesn't die? How much damage could you actually do?"

So we made the goldfish immortal, we banned infinite combos, and we scored based on how much damage we could do in a fixed number of turns. Rather than use existing decks though, we decided to turn it up another level and do a draft specifically for this purpose.

So began Goldfish Draft. Scores varied wildly, with some cards much better than others. What we found though was the high scores were by far the most fun. So we decided to turn it up one more level, and draft from a cube of the wackiest and most overpowered cards from all over the history of Magic.

And so the Goldfish Cube was born.

Goldfish Draft - the tournament format

Goldfish Cube - the card lists

The Goldfish Cube is a specific cube of cards specially designed for Goldfish Draft. Its design has been iteratively updated over several tournaments. However our tournaments 1 and 5 used very different cubes that are not part of the evolutionary path.

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mezzacotta | Comic Irregulars' Magic: The Gathering

Last updated: Wednesday, 13 May, 2020; 02:00:49 PDT.
Original material copyright © 2015-2017, The Comic Irregulars.