The MTG Community - Pros & Cons of Playing Two-Headed Giant [Edward Eng - Battlemage, Level 42]

I think Oath of the Gatewatch is pretty cool so far. There are so many powerful cards in the set. And the introduction of colorless mana has really put a new spin on the game. I have a feeling the new Modern Eldrazi deck will have a nice showing at the upcoming Pro Tour. But for Standard, I think it might take a little longer before we see the Eldrazi take over since 4-Color Rally is quite dominant right now.

And for Limited, I've heard some people say that drafting OGW hasn't been as fun as drafting BFZ. I'm not actually sure how true that is since the set hasn't been out for that long. As for me, I've played in a couple of Prereleases plus a couple of team drafts and it's been really fun. But the most fun I've had with OGW so far has been the two-headed giant I played in. The surge mechanic is pretty sweet! This was also my first two-headed giant tournament.

I think the format is pretty awesome and you can definitely learn a lot. I also think there are some things to watch out for. So today, I'd like to talk about the pros and cons of playing two-headed giant.


1. Multiple Deckbuilding Angles

Since most teams build their decks together, each teammate gets an opportunity to explore his or teammates ideas. Sometimes you overlook things and your teammate can point them out as you build your decks.

2. Instant Card Evaluations

You and your teammate can instantly have a discussion about any card. Sometimes it really helps to talk things through to see if a card is playable or if it's better or worse than another card.

3. Play What You Like

The card pool is generally pretty deep, so there's usually some combination of cards that will most likely allow both players to play something they're each interested in. For example, someone can be the aggressor while the other plays a more controlling deck.

4. Just a Lot of Fun

This is probably the most important part. The format is just a ton of fun. You get to play games with a friend and just have a good time. It's a nice change from some of the other really competitive tournaments like PPTQs, Grand Prix, or even FNM.

With that being said, here are some things to watch out for if you're more of a competitive tournament player.


1. Crutches

Be careful not to get to lazy with deckbuilding here. The fact that you have a teammate doesn't mean you should just do whatever because you're teammate will have your back. As a matter of fact, take this time to bring great ideas to the table and build awesome decks.

2. Bad Blocks

The board state can get pretty crazy and cluttered. And often times, people just get lazy and make bad blocks. Don't take all day, but still take some time to think the blocks through. This is another opportunity to sharpen your skills and improve your combat math.

3. Missed Triggers

There's twice as much stuff going on, and it can be pretty easy to miss triggers. Often times, these triggers are pretty important. So again, take this time to sharpen your skills and keep an eye out for not only your triggers but your teammates too.

Have you played two-headed giant before? What did you learn? I'd love to hear about your experience.

Peace, love, and have fun…

Additional Reading

1. Event - $1k Magic Tournament Hosted by Galactic Treasures & The Card House

2. MTG Reporter - Horseshoes & Hand Grenades [Jon Waldrop - Task Mage, Level 12]

3. Brewer's Paradise - Revisiting Pack Rat in Legacy [Ty Thomason - Archmage, Level 46]

A Little Bit about Eddie

He started playing Magic around December of 1994 then hit the sanctioned competitive tournament scene in 1997. He played till about 2000 and was on the cusp of making the Pro Tour but stopped to focus on school. He found his old teammate on Facebook in 2009 and got back into the game in 2010. Since then he's played in two Nationals, top 16ed an SCG Invitational, and day 2ed multiple Grand Prix.

Archive of Eddie's Articles

Edward Eng


Galactic Treasures