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CardShark Content - Adam Fischer (1/10/2003)

[Editor's Note: Go to StarCity's file collection of Adam's stats for GP New Orleans and other events. Great job, Adam!]


http://www.starcitygames.com/php/news/expandnews.php?Article=4310


This article is intended to be a companion to the spreadsheet and associated instructional article I posted on StarCity. I encourage you, if you haven’t already, to download the spreadsheets and read the instructional article, as that way this article will be far more meaningful. In addition, it would be helpful to refer to the spreadsheet while reading this article. The spreadsheets contain data on the prevalence and performance of the various Extended deck types at GP New Orleans as well as combined data for GP New Orleans, GP Reims, and PT Houston. Please do let me know at adam_mba@yahoo.com if you have any suggestions or questions.

I feel the most useful place to start looking at the data is by looking at the “Summary” and “Deck Performance” worksheet on the “Combined Extended Statistics Post-GP New Orleans” spreadsheet, and then to look at the “Matchups” and “Matchups – Adjusted” worksheets for additional information. The “GP New Orleans Statistics” worksheet can be used to glean addition details from GP Reims, the most recent event.

Also, since we are a little over halfway through the Extended season, I’m going to focus more in this article on how things have changed since the last analysis was done. So without further ado, here are the main conclusions I feel can be derived from the statistical data:


METAGAME:

There appears to have been a huge shift away from combo and towards control. At GP New Orleans, control decks such as Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
and Oath made up 28% of the field, vs. just 17% of the field in Houston. Simultaneously, Reanimator appears to have died off and U/G Madness has become one of the most popular decks. In essence, the 4 main decks, making up 51% of the field on Day 1 of GP New Orleans and 63% of the field on Day 2, are now:
- Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

- U/G Madness
- The Rock
- Sligh

The next level of decks includes Oath, Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
, and Tradewind Opposition
Opposition
OppositionSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
40
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Tap an untapped creature you control: Tap target artifact, creature, or land.
, but there is still much room for almost any good deck to succeed, as evidenced by the Top 8 showings of Tinker
Tinker
TinkerSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
45
Artist:
Mike Raabe
Text:
At the time you play Tinker, sacrifice an artifact.Search your library for an artifact card and put that artifact into play. Shuffle your library afterward.
and Elves.


DETAILED DECK PERFORMANCE:

Certain deck types performed particularly well overall and certain deck types performed particularly well or poorly in certain matchups and are thus best suited to certain metagames. Following is an analysis of the performance of each major deck type, with comments on what changed from PT Houston and GP Reims, starting with the deck types that performed best overall: (note that all winning percentages are combined for all events)

1) Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
:

This deck made a huge showing at New Orleans, and also performed well there. It is definitely one of the top decks to beat now. Moreover, it had the best rate of advancement from Day 1 to Day 2 at New Orleans, even taking the somewhat greater than average number of average byes into account.

Best Matchups: Reanimator, Hermit Druid
Hermit Druid
Hermit DruidSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Druid
Rarity:
R
Number:
58
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
G, T: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a basic land card. Put that card into your hand and put all other revealed cards into your graveyard.

Worst Matchups: Ghoul Burst, White Weenie

2) Turbo Oath:

Although one of the lesser played decks, this deck did show up and turn in a respectable 56% performance at New Orleans, continuing its strong showing. One significant change for New Orleans were the Oath decks packing Crater Hellion
Crater Hellion
Crater HellionSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
6
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Beast
Rarity:
R
Number:
179
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
Echo (During your next upkeep after this permanent comes under your control, pay its casting cost or sacrifice it.) When Crater Hellion comes into play, it deals 4 damage to each other creature.
to clear the board. Also, one note of caution is that although the decks of this type that did make Day 2 in New Orleans did well, VERY few of these decks made the cut off, with an advancement ratio of just .5.

Best Matchups: The Rock (won 91% of its 16 matches!)
Worst Matchups: Suicide Black

3) Draco
Draco
DracoSet: Planeshift
Cost:
16
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Dragon
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Sam Wood
Power:
9
Toughness:
9
Text:
Flying. Draco costs 2 less to play for each basic land type among lands you control. At the beginning of your upkeep, sacrifice Draco unless you pay 10. This cost is reduced by 2 for each basic land type among lands you control.
Explosion:

Did almost as well as Turbo Oath at 59% but results were based on even less data, at just 7 decks and 58 matches, so these results should be heavily discounted. The deck only did average at New Orleans, most likely to it being much less of a surprise. This deck did well in making the Day 2 cutoff in New Orleans, but this was in part due to heavy play by the players with more byes.

Best Matchups: The Rock, Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
, U/G Madness
Worst Matchups: Suicide Black, White Weenie, Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.


4) Hermit Druid
Hermit Druid
Hermit DruidSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Druid
Rarity:
R
Number:
58
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
G, T: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a basic land card. Put that card into your hand and put all other revealed cards into your graveyard.
:

Only one person played this deck on Day 2 of New Orleans, but he did well, continuing the strong showing of this deck. This deck had an average rate of Day 2 advancement at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: The Rock, Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.

Worst Matchups: Sligh, Suicide Black, Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.


5) Sligh:

This deck continuing its strong showing in both numbers and performance, though it was not as dominant as it was at Reims. It is worth noting that all variants of this deck playing in New Orleans were the non-Goblin “Red Deck Wins” variants. This deck did well in making the Day 2 cutoff in New Orleans.

Best Matchups: Suicide Black, Hermit Druid
Hermit Druid
Hermit DruidSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Druid
Rarity:
R
Number:
58
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
G, T: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a basic land card. Put that card into your hand and put all other revealed cards into your graveyard.
, White Weenie
Worst Matchups: Reanimator

6) U/G Madness:

This was another deck that made a huge showing at New Orleans, though its performance was merely average, a drop from previous events. This deck had an average rate of Day 2 advancement at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: Suicide Black, The Rock, Reanimator
Worst Matchups: Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
, Draco
Draco
DracoSet: Planeshift
Cost:
16
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Dragon
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Sam Wood
Power:
9
Toughness:
9
Text:
Flying. Draco costs 2 less to play for each basic land type among lands you control. At the beginning of your upkeep, sacrifice Draco unless you pay 10. This cost is reduced by 2 for each basic land type among lands you control.
Explosion

7) Tinker
Tinker
TinkerSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
45
Artist:
Mike Raabe
Text:
At the time you play Tinker, sacrifice an artifact.Search your library for an artifact card and put that artifact into play. Shuffle your library afterward.
:

Did slightly below average overall, but the one version on Day 2 at New Orleans did exceptionally well and the deck had an above-average advancement rate from Day 1 to Day 2 at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: White Weenie
Worst Matchups: Reanimator, Sligh

8) Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
:

Performed about average overall, but did not have a strong showing at New Orleans. This deck made a very strong showing in advancing from Day 1 to Day 2 at New Orleans, even without the benefit of a greater than average number of average byes.

Best Matchups: The Rock
Worst Matchups: Hermit Druid
Hermit Druid
Hermit DruidSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Druid
Rarity:
R
Number:
58
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
G, T: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a basic land card. Put that card into your hand and put all other revealed cards into your graveyard.
, Suicide Black

9) The Rock:

Performed slightly below average overall, but with a significantly better performance at New Orleans than at Reims for the decks that made Day 2, however the overall rate of advancement from Day 1 to Day 2 at New Orleans was rather low.

Best Matchups: Suicide Black
Worst Matchups: Hermit Druid
Hermit Druid
Hermit DruidSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Druid
Rarity:
R
Number:
58
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
G, T: Reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a basic land card. Put that card into your hand and put all other revealed cards into your graveyard.
, Turbo Oath, Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.


10) Tradewind Opposition
Opposition
OppositionSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
40
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Tap an untapped creature you control: Tap target artifact, creature, or land.
:

This deck essentially made its first appearance of the season at New Orleans. It made an excellent showing in advancing from Day 1 to Day 2 (though this was somewhat helped by byes), but it did not fare particularly well on Day 2.

Best Matchups: Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.

Worst Matchups: Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.


11) Suicide Black:

Did not make Day 2 at New Orleans even though it did see some play.

Best Matchups: Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
, Reanimator
Worst Matchups: Sligh, The Rock

12) Reanimator:

Did just slightly below average overall, but only had one appearance at New Orleans and did not fare well there. VERY few of these decks made the cut off to Day 2 at New Orleans, with an advancement ratio of just .5.

Best Matchups: Sligh, Tinker
Tinker
TinkerSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
45
Artist:
Mike Raabe
Text:
At the time you play Tinker, sacrifice an artifact.Search your library for an artifact card and put that artifact into play. Shuffle your library afterward.

Worst Matchups: Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
, Suicide Black

13) White Weenie:

Did a little below average. Note that this archetype also includes Fiends. VERY few of these decks made the cut off to Day 2 at New Orleans, with an advancement ratio of just .4.

Best Matchups: Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
, Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.

Worst Matchups: Sligh

14) Ghoul Burst:

Did just a little below average overall, but the one instance of it at New Orleans fared much worse than average.

Best Matchups: Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

Worst Matchups: The Rock, Suicide Black

15) BUG:

Did not do very well, but had among the least amount of data, at just 8 decks and 47 matches. This deck was non-existent at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: Sligh
Worst Matchups: Reanimator

16) Enchantress:

Did not do very well, but had relatively little data, at 59 matches and was hardly played at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: Suicide Black
Worst Matchups: Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.


17) Zombie Upheaval
Upheaval
UpheavalSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
113
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Return all permanents to their owners' hands.
:

Did the worst by far, winning just 31% of its matches. However, also had the least amount of data, at just 29 matches and was not played at all at New Orleans.

Best Matchups: Reanimator
Worst Matchups: Suicide Black


OVERALL CONCLUSIONS AS TO WHAT DECK TO PLAY:

The metagame has changed drastically from PT Houston, so it is probably best to focus on results from GP Reims and GP New Orleans. Looking at those two events, Sligh appears to be quite strong, putting in above-average performances at both. This is probably in some part due to Reanimator, one of Sligh’s worst matchups, being a negligible part of the metagame, but if this continues Sligh could be a good choice. Note also that the consensus seems to be that the non-Goblins variant is the best version to play.

Psychatog
Psychatog
PsychatogSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Atog
Rarity:
U
Number:
292
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Remove two cards in your graveyard from the game: Psychatog gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
also did quite well at both events, and its advancement rate from Day 1 to Day 2 at New Orleans was amazing, though due to its popularity at New Orleans there may be more hate for it now. Still, its strength cannot be ignored and it appears a good choice to play.

There still is not much data on Draco
Draco
DracoSet: Planeshift
Cost:
16
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Sub Type:
Dragon
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Sam Wood
Power:
9
Toughness:
9
Text:
Flying. Draco costs 2 less to play for each basic land type among lands you control. At the beginning of your upkeep, sacrifice Draco unless you pay 10. This cost is reduced by 2 for each basic land type among lands you control.
Explosion, but it looks like it has the potential to be good, putting in an average or better performance at both events.

U/G Madness appears to be a reasonable choice to play, though its performance was pretty much just average, at least it wasn’t any worse. Also, it appears that the trend is to splash red for Fire/Ice and Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue KavuSet: Planeshift
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kavu
Rarity:
U
Number:
60
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
4
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Flametongue Kavu comes into play, it deals 4 damage to target creature.
, as half the versions played on Day 2 at GP New Orleans did this.

As for the rest of the popular decks, The Rock’s performance does not appear to be up to the level it once was or to the level of many other decks. Oath is very sporadic, sometimes doing quite well but other times (such as in advancing to Day 2 at New Orleans) doing poorly. However, this could well be due to the differences in creature bases and player ability. Aluren
Aluren
AlurenSet: Tempest
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
April Lee
Text:
Any player may play a creature card with total casting cost 3 or less whenever he or she could play an instant and without paying its casting cost.
’s performance also seems to vary a lot.

Although that covers the main decks, there is definitely room for creatively, as the strong showing of a Tinker
Tinker
TinkerSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
45
Artist:
Mike Raabe
Text:
At the time you play Tinker, sacrifice an artifact.Search your library for an artifact card and put that artifact into play. Shuffle your library afterward.
and an Elf deck at New Orleans showed.

Hope all that helps and good luck!

Team Cardshark


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