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CardShark Content - Al Hetzel (1/17/2005)

I hate Elves! Well, that's not precisely true. I just hate Elf Decks. Why? Oh, there are many reasons. First, they show a complete lack of creativity. Every Elf Deck has about 75-80% of the same cards as every other Elf Deck. Second, too many people are using Elf Decks. Third, I lose to them too often.

Ok, it is the third reason that is the most important to me. But, there is a story behind it. I first started playing online right after Onslaught
Onslaught
OnslaughtSet: Exodus
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
92
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Text:
Whenever you successfully cast a creature spell, tap target creature.
was released. At that time, everybody and his brother had an Elf Deck. Considering the sheer number of Elves that were in Onslaught
Onslaught
OnslaughtSet: Exodus
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
92
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Text:
Whenever you successfully cast a creature spell, tap target creature.
, that's not too surprising.

I didn't use that many Elves. Instead, I was putting together unusual decks. These decks were so unusual that I had to go to the New Player section in order to play them. Half the time, they didn't work right and I would lose spectacularly. I had no problem losing as long as I had time to try out the cards that were in the deck.

Elf Decks stopped my experimentation. Suddenly, even beginners had super fast decks capable of having a dozen creatures and twenty mana out by turn 3. (Ok, that's a slight exaggeration.) And then, there was Bob.

Bob (not his real alias) is a hawk. He is an extremely skilled player with tons of cards who goes to the New Player section to pick on the newbies. There are many hawks out there, but there is only one Bob. He loves to taunt the other players. He will post to the general discussion how his Elf Deck can beat anyone else's. In the match, he won't win the game. Instead, he wants you to concede. He will kill all of your creatures and then stop attacking. When you bring out another creature, he will attack with a Taunting Elf
Taunting Elf
Taunting ElfSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf
Rarity:
C
Number:
122
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
All creatures able to block Taunting Elf do so.
since it has to be blocked. With 15-20 Elves out and 2-3 Coat of Arms
Coat of Arms
Coat of ArmsSet: Exodus
Cost:
5
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Each creature gets +1/+1 for each other creature in play of the same creature type. (For example, if there are three Goblins in play, each of them gets +2/+2.)
in play, his Taunting Elf
Taunting Elf
Taunting ElfSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf
Rarity:
C
Number:
122
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
All creatures able to block Taunting Elf do so.
can destroy anything you play.

I first met Bob one day when I was trying out a Wizard deck. It wasn't a very good deck and Bob quickly had me down to two life. I would bring out a creature and he would attack with his Taunting Elf
Taunting Elf
Taunting ElfSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf
Rarity:
C
Number:
122
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
All creatures able to block Taunting Elf do so.
to destroy it. If I didn't bring out a creature, he wouldn't attack. He would say things like ´´What's the matter, can't you handle an elf?´´ A real jerk.

When he finally beat me (I refused to give him the satisfaction of conceding), I went and made an Anti-Elf Deck. I started another duel and waited for Bob.

I knew that I couldn't match creature for creature with an Elf Deck. So, I didn't try. Instead, I picked a few creatures for their special abilities.

2: Guiltfeeder
Guiltfeeder
GuiltfeederSet: Judgment
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Rarity:
R
Number:
68
Artist:
Mark Tedin

Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Guiltfeeder can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or black creatures. Whenever Guiltfeeder attacks and isn't blocked, defending player loses 1 life for each card in his or her graveyard.

1: Eastern Paladin
Eastern Paladin
Eastern PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
133
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target green creature.

2: Visara the Dreadful
Visara the Dreadful
Visara the DreadfulSet: Onslaught
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Gorgon Legend
Rarity:
R
Number:
179
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Flying. T: Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated.

1: Western Paladin
Western Paladin
Western PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
168
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target white creature.


The Guiltfeeder
Guiltfeeder
GuiltfeederSet: Judgment
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Rarity:
R
Number:
68
Artist:
Mark Tedin

Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Guiltfeeder can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or black creatures. Whenever Guiltfeeder attacks and isn't blocked, defending player loses 1 life for each card in his or her graveyard.
s have fear. The green Elves couldn't block it. It had 0 power but caused damage according to the number of cards that was in my opponent's graveyard. With all of the instants and sorceries that are used in Elf Decks, the graveyard would be full.

The Eastern Paladin
Eastern Paladin
Eastern PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
133
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target green creature.
is a decent 3/3 creature. However, its ability makes it fantastic against Elves. For two black mana, you can tap the paladin and kill a green creature.

The Visara the Dreadful
Visara the Dreadful
Visara the DreadfulSet: Onslaught
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Gorgon Legend
Rarity:
R
Number:
179
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Flying. T: Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated.
is a particularly powerful card. To start with, it is a 5/5 flyer for only six mana (3 black and 3 general). Plus, you can tap it to kill any creature (that doesn't have protection from black) and the creature can't be regenerated. My favorite trick was to wait until my opponent attacks. Then, I will block with Visara to kill one creature and tap it to kill another. Two for the price of one.

The Western Paladin
Western Paladin
Western PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
168
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target white creature.
is identical to the Eastern Paladin
Eastern Paladin
Eastern PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
133
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target green creature.
except that it will kill a white creature. I actually wanted two Eastern Paladin
Eastern Paladin
Eastern PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
133
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target green creature.
s for this deck, but I only had one.

Of course, if I were building the deck today, I wouldn't use the paladins at all. Instead, I would use two Royal Assassin
Royal Assassin
Royal AssassinSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Assassin
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Tom Wänerstrand
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
T: Destroy any tapped creature.
s. The assassins are great against Elves. You can tap an assassin to kill a tapped creature. Elves are always tapping. They tap to attack. They tap to provide mana. They tap to provide life.

With so few creatures, I needed some other way to protect my life. I used artifacts.

3: Caltrops
Caltrops
CaltropsSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
Whenever a creature attacks, Caltrops deals 1 damage to it.

4: Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring BridgeSet: Stronghold
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
127
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Each creature with power greater than the number of cards in your hand cannot attack.


The Caltrops
Caltrops
CaltropsSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
Whenever a creature attacks, Caltrops deals 1 damage to it.
deal one damage to each attacking creature. In the early part of the game, Elves are generally 1/1. This card completely stops them from attacking. By the time they are powerful enough to get by the Caltrops
Caltrops
CaltropsSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
Whenever a creature attacks, Caltrops deals 1 damage to it.
, you can use the next card.

The Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring BridgeSet: Stronghold
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
127
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Each creature with power greater than the number of cards in your hand cannot attack.
s prevent any creature from attacking if its power is greater than the number of cards in your hand. Since you will be playing cards as fast as you can get them, your hand will be empty most of the time.

One word of warning. Creatures that have 0 power will always be able to attack. A Taunting Elf
Taunting Elf
Taunting ElfSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf
Rarity:
C
Number:
122
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
All creatures able to block Taunting Elf do so.
has 0 power and can generally be pumped up after an attack has been called. On the other hand, your Guiltfeeder
Guiltfeeder
GuiltfeederSet: Judgment
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Rarity:
R
Number:
68
Artist:
Mark Tedin

Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Guiltfeeder can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or black creatures. Whenever Guiltfeeder attacks and isn't blocked, defending player loses 1 life for each card in his or her graveyard.
s also have 0 power and since there are only 3 Caltrops
Caltrops
CaltropsSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
Whenever a creature attacks, Caltrops deals 1 damage to it.
, they will always be able to attack.

Even though Visara and the paladins will be controlling most of your opponent's creatures, it is still a good idea to have plenty of creature control.

2: Befoul
Befoul
BefoulSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
116
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Destroy target land or nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated.

1: Chainer's Edict
Chainer's Edict
Chainer's EdictSet: Torment
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
57
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature. Flashback 5BB

2: Dark Banishing
Dark Banishing
Dark BanishingSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Drew Tucker
Text:
Bury target non-black creature.

2: 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.


The Befoul
Befoul
BefoulSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
116
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Destroy target land or nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated.
s can be used to kill a non-black creature or a land. If you can, save it for a land and use another spell to take care of a creature. There are plenty of lands and land enchantments that you don't want your opponent to keep.

The Chainer's Edict
Chainer's Edict
Chainer's EdictSet: Torment
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
57
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature. Flashback 5BB
is for the occasionally creature that has protection from black. It doesn't target a creature. Instead, you target your opponent and he has to sacrifice a creature. You can play it twice since it has flashback. The trick is to kill every other creature so your opponent only has one choice.

The Dark Banishing
Dark Banishing
Dark BanishingSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Drew Tucker
Text:
Bury target non-black creature.
s are a staple creature removal spell. For two generic and one black mana, you can kill a non-black creature.

The 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.
s are extremely powerful anti-creature spells. For two generic and two black mana, all creatures get -1/-1 for each swamp you control. If you have 10 swamps, that's -10/-10 which will kill almost anything. You need to keep three things in mind when using this spell. First, it affects your creatures as well. Second, it will affect creatures that have protection from black. Third, it doesn't cause damage so it will kill supposedly indestructible creatures.

The next two spells can be used for creature removal or to drain off some of your opponent's life. Unless you really need them for creatures, save them for your opponent.

2: 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.

2: Soul Burn
Soul Burn
Soul BurnSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Soul Burn deals 1 damage to a single target creature or player for each B or R you pay in addition to the casting cost. Gain 1 life for each B you spend in this way. You cannot gain more life than the toughness of the creature or the total life of the targeted player.


The 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.
s cause damage equal to the number of swamps you control to a target creature or player. You gain life equal to the amount of damage caused.

The Soul Burn
Soul Burn
Soul BurnSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Soul Burn deals 1 damage to a single target creature or player for each B or R you pay in addition to the casting cost. Gain 1 life for each B you spend in this way. You cannot gain more life than the toughness of the creature or the total life of the targeted player.
s do the same thing except they cause damage equal to the amount of black or red mana spent on the spell. As you will see in a moment, you have access to over 100 mana per turn for this spell. That's a lot of life.

So far, we have a lot of creature removal and some life drain. But, wouldn't it be great if you could kill the Elves automatically?

4: Engineered Plague
Engineered Plague
Engineered PlagueSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
51
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Text:
When Engineered Plague comes into play, choose a creature type.All creatures of the chosen type get -1/-1.


Engineered Plague
Engineered Plague
Engineered PlagueSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
51
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Text:
When Engineered Plague comes into play, choose a creature type.All creatures of the chosen type get -1/-1.
is a particularly powerful enchantment. When it comes into play, you choose a creature type. All creatures of that type get -1/-1. With all four of them in play and Elf chosen as the creature type, all Elves will get -4/-4. That is enough to kill most of them.

The next two spells were thrown in at the last moment but they turned out to be the strongest part of this entire deck.

2: Caustic Tar
Caustic Tar
Caustic TarSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Enchanted land has ``Tap: Target player loses 3 life.``

2: False Cure
False Cure
False CureSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
146
Artist:
Bradley Williams
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player gains life, that player loses 2 life for each 1 life he or she gained.


Caustic Tar
Caustic Tar
Caustic TarSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Enchanted land has ``Tap: Target player loses 3 life.``
is a land enchantment. The land can be tapped to cause an opponent 3 damage. The 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.
and Soul Burn
Soul Burn
Soul BurnSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Soul Burn deals 1 damage to a single target creature or player for each B or R you pay in addition to the casting cost. Gain 1 life for each B you spend in this way. You cannot gain more life than the toughness of the creature or the total life of the targeted player.
spells can only be used once. This enchantment can be used every turn causing 3 damage per turn.

The False Cure
False Cure
False CureSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
146
Artist:
Bradley Williams
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player gains life, that player loses 2 life for each 1 life he or she gained.
s are particularly fun way to win since your opponent will kill himself. When this instant is played, then until the end of turn, for every one life a player gains, he loses two life. Your opponent plays Stream of Life
Stream of Life
Stream of LifeSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Target player gains X life.
to gain 10 life. Because of this spell, he will lose 10 life instead. Or, your opponent has a Wellwisher
Wellwisher
WellwisherSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elf
Rarity:
C
Number:
300
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
T: You gain 1 life for each Elf in play.
in play. You target it with a Dark Banishing
Dark Banishing
Dark BanishingSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Drew Tucker
Text:
Bury target non-black creature.
. Your opponent taps it for life, untaps it with another Elf, taps it for more life, untaps it with another Elf, taps it for more life, untaps it with a land, taps it for more life, etc. Then, you play False Cure
False Cure
False CureSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
146
Artist:
Bradley Williams
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player gains life, that player loses 2 life for each 1 life he or she gained.
and ruin his day.

Now, for the mana. I have been accused (with some justification), of not putting enough mana in my decks. I didn't do that here.

2: 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.

2: Deserted Temple
Deserted Temple
Deserted TempleSet: Odyssey
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
320
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Tap: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool 1, Tap: Untap target land.

24: Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.


For 2 mana, the 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.
will give you one black mana for every swamp you have.

The Deserted Temple
Deserted Temple
Deserted TempleSet: Odyssey
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
320
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Tap: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool 1, Tap: Untap target land.
can be tapped for a general mana. Or, you can spend one mana and use it to untap another land. There are two ways this is useful. First, if you need a huge amount of mana for your Soul Burn
Soul Burn
Soul BurnSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Soul Burn deals 1 damage to a single target creature or player for each B or R you pay in addition to the casting cost. Gain 1 life for each B you spend in this way. You cannot gain more life than the toughness of the creature or the total life of the targeted player.
spell, you can untap the 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.
. Second, if you have cast Caustic Tar
Caustic Tar
Caustic TarSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Enchanted land has ``Tap: Target player loses 3 life.``
on a land, you can untap it to deal another 3 damage. This second method is extremely effective for causing damage.

Here is the full deck.

Artifact (7)
3: Caltrops
Caltrops
CaltropsSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Number:
129
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
Whenever a creature attacks, Caltrops deals 1 damage to it.

4: Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring BridgeSet: Stronghold
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
127
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Each creature with power greater than the number of cards in your hand cannot attack.


Black (25)
2: Befoul
Befoul
BefoulSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
116
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Destroy target land or nonblack creature. It can't be regenerated.

2: Caustic Tar
Caustic Tar
Caustic TarSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Enchanted land has ``Tap: Target player loses 3 life.``

1: Chainer's Edict
Chainer's Edict
Chainer's EdictSet: Torment
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
57
Text:
Target player sacrifices a creature. Flashback 5BB

2: 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.

2: Dark Banishing
Dark Banishing
Dark BanishingSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Drew Tucker
Text:
Bury target non-black creature.

4: Engineered Plague
Engineered Plague
Engineered PlagueSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
51
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Text:
When Engineered Plague comes into play, choose a creature type.All creatures of the chosen type get -1/-1.

2: False Cure
False Cure
False CureSet: Onslaught
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
146
Artist:
Bradley Williams
Text:
Until end of turn, whenever a player gains life, that player loses 2 life for each 1 life he or she gained.

2: Guiltfeeder
Guiltfeeder
GuiltfeederSet: Judgment
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Rarity:
R
Number:
68
Artist:
Mark Tedin

Power:
0
Toughness:
4
Text:
Guiltfeeder can't be blocked except by artifact creatures and/or black creatures. Whenever Guiltfeeder attacks and isn't blocked, defending player loses 1 life for each card in his or her graveyard.

1: Eastern Paladin
Eastern Paladin
Eastern PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
133
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target green creature.

2: 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.

2: Soul Burn
Soul Burn
Soul BurnSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Soul Burn deals 1 damage to a single target creature or player for each B or R you pay in addition to the casting cost. Gain 1 life for each B you spend in this way. You cannot gain more life than the toughness of the creature or the total life of the targeted player.

2: Visara the Dreadful
Visara the Dreadful
Visara the DreadfulSet: Onslaught
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Gorgon Legend
Rarity:
R
Number:
179
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Flying. T: Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated.

1: Western Paladin
Western Paladin
Western PaladinSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
R
Number:
168
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
BB, T: Destroy target white creature.


Land (28)
2: 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.

2: Deserted Temple
Deserted Temple
Deserted TempleSet: Odyssey
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
320
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Tap: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool 1, Tap: Untap target land.

24: Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.


Now, back to my story. Almost immediately after creating the duel, Bob took up the challenge. He actually started with something along the lines of ´´back for more?´´ He was playing it up since we had an audience. Someone started watching the duel almost immediately.

Bob started out in typical fashion with several low cost Elves. By turn 3, he had 5 Elves in play. That's when I played my first spell – Engineered Plague
Engineered Plague
Engineered PlagueSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
51
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Text:
When Engineered Plague comes into play, choose a creature type.All creatures of the chosen type get -1/-1.
. Four of the five Elves died immediately. Bob was shocked. He was even more shocked when I eliminated his remaining Elf the next turn.

About this time, our audience must have gone to tell everyone what was going on because about a dozen people started watching our duel. Apparently, Bob wasn't very well liked and everyone wanted to see him get what he deserved.

He got it. By turn 5, I had a Visara in play and was gleefully destroying any Elves that he managed to play. The ones I couldn't get to immediately couldn't attack because of the Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring Bridge
Ensnaring BridgeSet: Stronghold
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
127
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Each creature with power greater than the number of cards in your hand cannot attack.
. Not long after, I brought out a Caustic Tar
Caustic Tar
Caustic TarSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
Enchanted land has ``Tap: Target player loses 3 life.``
and a Deserted Temple
Deserted Temple
Deserted TempleSet: Odyssey
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
320
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
Tap: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool 1, Tap: Untap target land.
and started bringing down his life.

When he reached five life, he conceded.


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