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CardShark Content - AJ Anderson (12/15/2004)

I’d like to start off my first article by emphasizing that I am a 95% casual player. Most of my decks are for group play, not necessarily duels, but they can work in a one-on-one environment. That being said, let’s get on with the article.
One of my most successful group decks is my Mono-Black Control deck. I built this deck around the concept of playing black creatureless and penalizing my opponents for playing creatures. To that end, I tossed in cards like Dingus Staff
Dingus Staff
Dingus StaffSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Richard Kane Ferguson
Text:
Whenever a creature is put into any graveyard from play, Dingus Staff deals 2 damage to that creature's controller.
and Tainted Aether
Tainted Aether
Tainted AetherSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
161
Artist:
Thomas M. Baxa
Text:
Whenever a creature comes into play, its controller sacrifices a creature or land.
. Then I added both mass and specific creature-kill spells to stop anything that slipped through my net. Mutilate
Mutilate
MutilateSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
73
Text:
All creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn for each swamp you control.
, Innocent Blood
Innocent Blood
Innocent BloodSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
145
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
Each player sacrifices a creature.
, Extinction
Extinction
ExtinctionSet: Tempest
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Una Fricker
Text:
Destroy all creatures of any creature type of your choice.
(to stop those pesky Elves, Slivers, etc), and Diabolic Edict
Diabolic Edict
Diabolic EdictSet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature.
all help to that effect. Here’s the card list:

Lands (20)
18x Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.
s
1x Stalking Stones
Stalking Stones
Stalking StonesSet: Tempest
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Stephen Daniele
Text:
T: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool.6: Stalking Stones becomes a 3/3 artifact creature permanently. (This creature still counts as a land.)

1x Cabal Coffers
Cabal Coffers
Cabal CoffersSet: Torment
Color:
Land
Type:
land
Rarity:
U
Number:
139
Text:
2, T: Add B to your mana pool for each swamp you control.


Spells (30)
3x Bubbling Muck
Bubbling Muck
Bubbling MuckSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Greg & Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player taps a swamp for mana, it produces an additional B.

2x Dark Ritual
Dark Ritual
Dark RitualSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Sandra Everingham
Text:
Add BBB to your mana pool.

2x Diabolic Edict
Diabolic Edict
Diabolic EdictSet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature.

2x Mutilate
Mutilate
MutilateSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
73
Text:
All creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn for each swamp you control.

1x Tendrils of Agony
Tendrils of Agony
Tendrils of AgonySet: Scourge
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
75
Text:
Target player loses 2 life and you gain 2 life.
Storm

2x Innocent Blood
Innocent Blood
Innocent BloodSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
145
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
Each player sacrifices a creature.

1x Infest
Infest
InfestSet: Onslaught
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
157
Artist:
Ben Thompson
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn.

1x Corrupt
Corrupt
CorruptSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
124
Artist:
Vincent Evans
Text:
Corrupt deals 1 damage to target creature or player for each swamp you control. When Corrupt successfully deals damage to a creature or player, gain life equal to that damage.

1x Shriveling Rot
Shriveling Rot
Shriveling RotSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
54
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
Choose one: Until end of turn whenever a creature is dealt damage destroy it; or until end of turn whenever a creature is put into a graveyard from play that creature's controller loses life equal to it's toughness. Entwine 2B (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost)

1x Ambition’s Cost
1x Snuff Out
Snuff Out
Snuff OutSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
162
Artist:
Mike Ploog
Text:
If you control a swamp, you may pay 4 life instead of paying Snuff Out's mana cost.Destroy target nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated.

1x Promise of Power
Promise of Power
Promise of PowerSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
74
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Choose one|You draw five cards and you lose 5 life; or put a black Demon creature token with flying into play with power and toughness each equal to the number of cards in your hand as the token comes into play. Entwine 4 (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost.)

3x Syphon Soul
Syphon Soul
Syphon SoulSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
159
Artist:
Melissa A. Benson
Text:
Syphon Soul deals 2 damage to each other player. You gain equal to the damage dealt this way.

4x Consume Spirit
Consume Spirit
Consume SpiritSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Artist:
Matt Thompson
Text:
Spend only black mana on X. Consume Spirit deals X damage to target creature or player. You gain X life.

1x Devour in Shadow
Devour in Shadow
Devour in ShadowSet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
46
Artist:
Thomas M Baxa
Text:
Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated. You lose life equal to that creature's toughness.

1x Barter in Blood
Barter in Blood
Barter in BloodSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
57
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Text:
Each player sacrifices two creatures.

1x Forced March
Forced March
Forced MarchSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
136
Artist:
Greg & Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
Destroy all creatures with converted mana cost X or less.

1x Sever Soul
Sever Soul
Sever SoulSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
159
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated. You gain life equal to its toughness.

1x Extinction
Extinction
ExtinctionSet: Tempest
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Una Fricker
Text:
Destroy all creatures of any creature type of your choice.

1x Diabolic Tutor
Diabolic Tutor
Diabolic TutorSet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Rick Farrell
Text:
Search your library for a card, and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.


Artifacts (8)
3x Dingus Staff
Dingus Staff
Dingus StaffSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Richard Kane Ferguson
Text:
Whenever a creature is put into any graveyard from play, Dingus Staff deals 2 damage to that creature's controller.

2x Vedalken Orrery
Vedalken Orrery
Vedalken OrrerySet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
163
Text:
You may play nonland cards anytime you could play an instant.

1x Planar Portal
Planar Portal
Planar PortalSet: Invasion
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
308
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
6, T: Search your library for a card and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.

1x Mindslaver
Mindslaver
MindslaverSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Legendary Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
206
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
4, T, Sacrifice Mindslaver: You control target player's next turn. (You see all cards that player could see and make all decisions for the player. He or she doesn't lose life because of mana burn.)

1x Gilded Lotus
Gilded Lotus
Gilded LotusSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
175
Artist:
Martina Pilcerova
Text:
T: Add three mana of any one color to your mana pool.


Enchantments (4)
3x Tainted Aether
Tainted Aether
Tainted AetherSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
161
Artist:
Thomas M. Baxa
Text:
Whenever a creature comes into play, its controller sacrifices a creature or land.

1x Lethal Vapors
Lethal Vapors
Lethal VaporsSet: Scourge
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
68
Text:
Whenever a creature comes into play, destroy it.
0 : Destroy Lethal Vapors. Skip your next turn. Any player may play this ability.


Analysis Time:
The Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.
s are in the deck because … well, duh. Stalking Stones
Stalking Stones
Stalking StonesSet: Tempest
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Stephen Daniele
Text:
T: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool.6: Stalking Stones becomes a 3/3 artifact creature permanently. (This creature still counts as a land.)
is always a good blocker for when you’re in a bind. Cabal Coffers
Cabal Coffers
Cabal CoffersSet: Torment
Color:
Land
Type:
land
Rarity:
U
Number:
139
Text:
2, T: Add B to your mana pool for each swamp you control.
is one of the best things ever for black acceleration. Speaking of acceleration, Bubbling Muck
Bubbling Muck
Bubbling MuckSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Greg & Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player taps a swamp for mana, it produces an additional B.
, Dark Ritual
Dark Ritual
Dark RitualSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Sandra Everingham
Text:
Add BBB to your mana pool.
, and Gilded Lotus
Gilded Lotus
Gilded LotusSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
175
Artist:
Martina Pilcerova
Text:
T: Add three mana of any one color to your mana pool.
also work to that end.
Most of the creature-kill spells are self-explanatory. The majority of them are mass-kill like Mutilate
Mutilate
MutilateSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
73
Text:
All creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn for each swamp you control.
or Innocent Blood
Innocent Blood
Innocent BloodSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
145
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
Each player sacrifices a creature.
, with a few creature-specific kill spells like Snuff Out
Snuff Out
Snuff OutSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
162
Artist:
Mike Ploog
Text:
If you control a swamp, you may pay 4 life instead of paying Snuff Out's mana cost.Destroy target nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated.
or Sever Soul
Sever Soul
Sever SoulSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
159
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Text:
Destroy target nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated. You gain life equal to its toughness.
. The big pay-off of the deck comes in the form of damaging your opponents through various means. Dingus Staff
Dingus Staff
Dingus StaffSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Richard Kane Ferguson
Text:
Whenever a creature is put into any graveyard from play, Dingus Staff deals 2 damage to that creature's controller.
penalizes them for having creatures on the board and Consume Spirit
Consume Spirit
Consume SpiritSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Artist:
Matt Thompson
Text:
Spend only black mana on X. Consume Spirit deals X damage to target creature or player. You gain X life.
is also key with the help of all the mana acceleration.
Now it’s time to explain a few of the fun cards in the deck. Promise of Power
Promise of Power
Promise of PowerSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
74
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Choose one|You draw five cards and you lose 5 life; or put a black Demon creature token with flying into play with power and toughness each equal to the number of cards in your hand as the token comes into play. Entwine 4 (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost.)
is a great card drawer and also gives you a big nasty creature if one is needed. Shriveling Rot
Shriveling Rot
Shriveling RotSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
54
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
Choose one: Until end of turn whenever a creature is dealt damage destroy it; or until end of turn whenever a creature is put into a graveyard from play that creature's controller loses life equal to it's toughness. Entwine 2B (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost)
is a fun card to play in response to a mass-kill spell like Forced March
Forced March
Forced MarchSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
136
Artist:
Greg & Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
Destroy all creatures with converted mana cost X or less.
or Mutilate
Mutilate
MutilateSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
73
Text:
All creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn for each swamp you control.
, making your opponents pay life for each creature you kill. Mindslaver
Mindslaver
MindslaverSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Legendary Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
206
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
4, T, Sacrifice Mindslaver: You control target player's next turn. (You see all cards that player could see and make all decisions for the player. He or she doesn't lose life because of mana burn.)
is great when you have an opponent who will be able to kill you (or anyone, for that matter) on their next turn. Using Mindslaver
Mindslaver
MindslaverSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Legendary Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
206
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
4, T, Sacrifice Mindslaver: You control target player's next turn. (You see all cards that player could see and make all decisions for the player. He or she doesn't lose life because of mana burn.)
, you can make them go all out against your opponents, or you can make them play creatures so you can kill them, or whatever. Vedalken Orrery
Vedalken Orrery
Vedalken OrrerySet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
163
Text:
You may play nonland cards anytime you could play an instant.
is beautiful because there are very few instants in the deck, taking away the reactionary ability of a normal control deck. Suddenly, everything (except land) is an instant! Next up is Planar Portal
Planar Portal
Planar PortalSet: Invasion
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
308
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
6, T: Search your library for a card and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
. As I’ve mentioned, if the deck works properly, you should be able to get out enough mana to keep using this card to Diabolic Tutor
Diabolic Tutor
Diabolic TutorSet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Rick Farrell
Text:
Search your library for a card, and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
every turn. Therefore, with enough mana and the Orrery, you can suddenly search for and play almost any card in your deck at any time you wish. THAT is control.

Ok, so I’m gonna go ahead and answer some of the questions that I’m sure people will ask about this deck. I know there are a lot of just one copies of a card, but I built this using my own collection so I didn’t necessarily have enough copies of some cards. I also know that the deck is not precisely 60 cards, but I don’t stick to that rule. Finally, feel free to alter any cards for your own use; I have found that this works in my particular circle of friends so I am not looking for any suggestions. I just wanted to throw this idea out there. Later articles will also be about other decks of mine that are built around a particularly uncommon idea, like Myr Incubator
Myr Incubator
Myr IncubatorSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
6
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
212
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
6, T, Sacrifice Myr Incubator: Search your library for any number of artifact cards, remove them from the game, then put that many 1/1 Myr artifact creature tokens into play. Then shuffle your library.
or Timesifter
Timesifter
TimesifterSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
262
Artist:
Dany Orizio
Text:
At the beginning of each player's upkeep, each player removes the top card of his or her library from the game. The player who removed the card with the highest converted mana cost takes an extra turn after this one. If two or more players' cards are tied for highest cost, the tied players repeat this process until the tie is broken.
(the actual centerpiece of the deck, not just thrown in there like some decks). Depending on how this article gets rated, I’ll write more articles so give me a good rating if you liked the deck idea or want to see more of my random card combos.


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