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CardShark Content - Clay Schubert (9/13/2006)

Most of us have experimented with making interesting flavor decks, but wind up with disappointment when the deck just can’t perform like we hoped. A little while ago, I was going through my big box of commons, and ran across a card that made me go “hmm?” After pondering for a few minutes, I ran to my boxes, threw some cards into a deck, and asked my roommate if he wanted to play. My roommate made two comments about the deck. “That is freaking awesome!” and “I hate you.” [Editor’s note: Always a great combination for a new deck.] Not only did the deck have awesome flavor, but the mechanics worked beautifully together. Think of a great rivalry in nature, like the mongoose and the cobra or the wasp and the spider. Now imagine those enemies working together to smash your opponent. I present a deck that combines sneaky ninjas and backstabbing pirates in a destructive synergy of mayhem and villainy!

Yar Matey, I’m a Ninja!
60 Cards

Lands
23 Island
Island
IslandSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add U to your mana pool.
s

21 Creatures
4 Rishadan Cutpurse
Rishadan Cutpurse
Rishadan CutpurseSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Christopher Moeller
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
When Rishadan Cutpurse comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 1.

4 Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan FootpadSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
U
Number:
94
Artist:
Adam Rex
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Rishadan Footpad comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 2.

2 Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan BrigandSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
R
Number:
92
Artist:
Scott Hampton
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Rishadan Brigand comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 3.Rishadan Brigand may block only creatures with flying.

4 Ninja of the Deep Hours
Ninja of the Deep Hours
Ninja of the Deep HoursSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
44
Artist:
Dan Scott
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Ninjutsu 1U (1U, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Ninja of the Deep Hours deals combat damage to a player, you may draw a card.

2 Mistblade Shinobi
Mistblade Shinobi
Mistblade ShinobiSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu U (U, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Mistblade Shinobi deals combat damage to a player, you may return target creature that player controls to its owner's hand.

1 Higure the Still Wind
4 Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken MastermindSet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Veldalken Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
40
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
U, Tap: Return target permanent you control to its owner's hand.


16 Spells
4 Shadow Rift
Shadow Rift
Shadow RiftSet: Tempest
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Target creature gains shadow until end of turn. (This creature can block or be blocked by only creatures with shadow.) Draw a card.

4 Withdraw
Withdraw
WithdrawSet: Prophecy
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Return target creature to its owner's hand. Then return another target creature to its owner's hand unless its controller pays 1.

4 Counterspell
Counterspell
CounterspellSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Counters target spell as it is being cast.

2 Equilibrium
Equilibrium
EquilibriumSet: Exodus
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
32
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Whenever you successfully cast a creature spell, you may pay 1 to return target creature to owner's hand.

1 Followed Footsteps
Followed Footsteps
Followed FootstepsSet: Ravnica City of Guilds
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
R
Number:
51
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
Enchant creature At the beginning of your upkeep, put a token into play that’s a copy of enchanted creature.

1 Costal Piracy
Piracy
PiracySet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Bradley Williams
Text:
This turn, you may tap your opponent's lands to help pay for your spells.




How the deck works
Play pirates that make the opponent sacrifice permanents. Ninjutsu the pirates back to your hand so the opponent sacrifices more permanents. Rinse, wash, repeat.

Card Choices
Rishadan Cutpurse
Rishadan Cutpurse
Rishadan CutpurseSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
C
Number:
93
Artist:
Christopher Moeller
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
When Rishadan Cutpurse comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 1.
: Most opponents will be tapped out at turn 3, giving you a great opportunity to make them lose a permanent. If you need, you can drop one or two from your deck if you need to sideboard something in. Mid and late game, they’re not that effective.

Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan FootpadSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
U
Number:
94
Artist:
Adam Rex
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Rishadan Footpad comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 2.
: The real workhorse of the deck. This pirate is the creature that is going to cause your opponent the most frustration and card. Forcing an opponent to keep two lands untapped each turn is such a great tempo advantage.

Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan BrigandSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
R
Number:
92
Artist:
Scott Hampton
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Rishadan Brigand comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 3.Rishadan Brigand may block only creatures with flying.
: His flying makes him a great target for Ninjutsu. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an opponent able to pay for his ability. Excellent target for Followed Footsteps
Followed Footsteps
Followed FootstepsSet: Ravnica City of Guilds
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
R
Number:
51
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
Enchant creature At the beginning of your upkeep, put a token into play that’s a copy of enchanted creature.
.

Ninja of the Deep Hours
Ninja of the Deep Hours
Ninja of the Deep HoursSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
44
Artist:
Dan Scott
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Ninjutsu 1U (1U, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Ninja of the Deep Hours deals combat damage to a player, you may draw a card.
: Card drawing and bouncing pirates. What more could you want?

Mistblade Shinobi
Mistblade Shinobi
Mistblade ShinobiSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
43
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu U (U, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Mistblade Shinobi deals combat damage to a player, you may return target creature that player controls to its owner's hand.
: Its cheap Ninjutsu cost is its main advantage. Its bounce ability is really handy when you make him unblockable with Shadow Rift
Shadow Rift
Shadow RiftSet: Tempest
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Target creature gains shadow until end of turn. (This creature can block or be blocked by only creatures with shadow.) Draw a card.
.

Higure, the Still Wind: Once you have the mana, this master ninja sneaks your ninjas into the red zone for the win.

Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken MastermindSet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Veldalken Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
40
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
U, Tap: Return target permanent you control to its owner's hand.
: The outcast of the deck (he’s a wizard). Defensively, he protects all your permanents. If you have him in play, try to keep him untapped with one mana open. Once you have a good mana base, he bounces pirates back to your hand so they can do even more evil pirate shenanigans.

Counterspell
Counterspell
CounterspellSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Counters target spell as it is being cast.
: Stop that Wrath of God
Wrath of God
Wrath of GodSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
White
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Quinton Hoover
Text:
All creatures in play are buried.
or Pyroclasm
Pyroclasm
PyroclasmSet: Ice Age
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Pat Morrissey
Text:
Pyroclasm deals 2 damage to each creature.
from wiping your board once you have control. This deck handles permanents pretty well, but needs that extra push against the spell threat. By the way, I’ve won with this deck even when a Wrath cleared 6 of my creatures.

Coastal Piracy
Coastal Piracy
Coastal PiracySet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
68
Artist:
Matthew D. Wilson
Text:
Whenever a creature you control deals combat damage to an opponent, you may draw a card.
: Its name demands you play it. What is better than having ninjas committing cruel acts of piracy while they perform their sneaky ninja skills? Most of the time, your creatures are going to be unblockable, and this gains you a lot of cards.

Withdraw
Withdraw
WithdrawSet: Prophecy
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Return target creature to its owner's hand. Then return another target creature to its owner's hand unless its controller pays 1.
: Bounce opposing threats, or your own pirates. You can force their creature back to their hand, and then opt not to pay the one mana to keep yours in play. This card is great because it can target two of the opponent’s creatures, two of yours, or one of each.

Shadow Rift
Shadow Rift
Shadow RiftSet: Tempest
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Target creature gains shadow until end of turn. (This creature can block or be blocked by only creatures with shadow.) Draw a card.
. No one plays shadow, so this card reads: Enable a ninja attack, and draw a card for ONE mana.

Equilibrium
Equilibrium
EquilibriumSet: Exodus
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
32
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Whenever you successfully cast a creature spell, you may pay 1 to return target creature to owner's hand.
: Once you have the mana, watch your opponents start scooping permanents in their graveyard as pirates start repeatedly smacking them over the head (like the pirate in the Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan Footpad
Rishadan FootpadSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
U
Number:
94
Artist:
Adam Rex
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Rishadan Footpad comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 2.
artwork).

Followed Footsteps
Followed Footsteps
Followed FootstepsSet: Ravnica City of Guilds
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Sub Type:
Aura
Rarity:
R
Number:
51
Artist:
Glen Angus
Text:
Enchant creature At the beginning of your upkeep, put a token into play that’s a copy of enchanted creature.
: Put on Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan Brigand
Rishadan BrigandSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Pirate
Rarity:
R
Number:
92
Artist:
Scott Hampton
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying When Rishadan Brigand comes into play, each opponent sacrifices a permanent unless he or she pays 3.Rishadan Brigand may block only creatures with flying.
and watch your opponents curse so much they’d make even a pirate blush.

Tips on playing the deck
1. If possible, try and wait to play pirates when you know the opponent can’t pay their cost. Even just the threat of them is going to make your opponent play cautious.
2. This deck is mana intensive. The mana curve maxes out at five, but you need a good amount of mana each turn – for Ninjutsu tricks, or for Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken Mastermind
Vedalken MastermindSet: Fifth Dawn
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Veldalken Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
40
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
U, Tap: Return target permanent you control to its owner's hand.
. Be careful to manage it wisely.
3. Early on, use your bounce defensively, both to bounce opposing threats and save your guys from removal. Later on, start to use it to play and replay pirates to your mischievous heart’s content.


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