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CardShark Content - Marcus Anderson (2/12/2001)

You are probably wondering about the statement ´´Power Common´´. Is this an oxymoron? You will have to trust me on this one - there are some commons that you want in every deck. They will mean card advantage, time advantage, and control to you and your game.

For clarification, these cards are mostly for mono colored common decks. They will span all sets and mostly focus around general-purpose, non-theme aggressive decks. For example, Dandan is an excellent creature for blue. For the cost of UU, you get a 4/1 fish that attacks if their opponents control an island. With your black-bordered Phantasmal Terrain
Phantasmal Terrain
Phantasmal TerrainSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchant Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Dameon Willich
Text:
Target land changes to any basic land type of caster's choice. Land type is set when cast and may not be further altered by this card.
from Mercadian Masques, Tidal Warrior
Tidal Warrior
Tidal WarriorSet: Stronghold
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Merfolk
Rarity:
C
Number:
47
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
T: Target land is an island until end of turn.
from Stronghold, or Kukemssa Serpent
Kukemssa Serpent
Kukemssa SerpentSet: Mirage
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Serpent
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Ian Miller
Power:
4
Toughness:
3
Text:
Islandhome (If defending player controls no islands, this creature cannot attack. If you control no islands, bury this creature.) U, Sacrifice an island: Target land an opponent controls is an island until end of turn.
from Tempest, you should have no problem making them have an island for your Unstable-Mutated Dandan (7/4)! You can see that Dandan deserves some attention, but only in a speedy fish deck. These cards listed below will be the ones that should appear in most every common deck.

WHITE
Empyrial Armor
Empyrial Armor
Empyrial ArmorSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
D. Alexander Gregory
Text:
Enchanted creature gets +X/+X, where X is equal to the number of cards in your hand.
is the ultimate Maro
Maro
MaroSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
R
Number:
241
Artist:
Stuart Griffin
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Maro's power and toughness are each equal to the number of cards in your hand.
-skin enchantment that changes the game. Your creature can go from weenie to fattie for WW1! I debated with someone about how ´´good´´ the card was in a type 2 tourney a few years ago. I claimed that the card was a high risk due to the spot removal and I swayed away from it. The player replied, ´´yeah, but if they don't take care of it, it's GAME!´´ Point well taken. Any card that can turn a 1/1 into a 6/6 on turn three is pretty good in my book. Empyrial is a game-breaker with non-tapping white creatures or artifacts (Yotian Soldier
Yotian Soldier
Yotian SoldierSet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
Attacking does not cause Yotian Soldier to tap.
and Femeref Knight
Femeref Knight
Femeref KnightSet: Mirage
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Knight
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flanking (Whenever a creature without flanking is assigned to block this creature, the blocking creature gets -1/-1 until end of turn.) W: Attacking does not cause Femeref Knight to tap this turn.
come to mind).

Order of Leitbur
Order of Leitbur
Order of LeitburSet: Fallen Empires
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Clerics
Rarity:
C
Number:
163
Artist:
Bryon Wackwitz
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Protection from blackWW: +1/+0 until end of turnW: First strike until end of turn
(otherwise known as ´´an order of lite beer´´) is one of the most amazing common creatures. For WW, you get a 2/1 with possible first strike ability and built-in pumping action! This is the card that starts out strong and gets stronger throughout the game. Don't cycle that land away; you will love it when your opponent does the math to figure out how big and fat your creature can get. You usually can earn a winning attack or two late game while blocking in the early game. Finally, this card is the MAIN reason that black decks need to have Serrated Arrows
Serrated Arrows
Serrated ArrowsSet: Homelands
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
C
Artist:
David A. Cherry
Text:
When Serrated Arrows comes into play, put three arrowhead counters on it.During your upkeep, bury Serrated Arrows if there are no arrowhead counters on it.T: Remove an arrowhead counter from Serrated Arrows to put a -1/-1 counter on target creature.
in the main deck!

Soul Warden
Soul Warden
Soul WardenSet: Exodus
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cleric
Rarity:
C
Number:
21
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Whenever any other creature comes into play, gain 1 life.
is the king of all weenie creatures in the common world. Very few common decks have less than eight creatures. Therefore, the life gain can be tremendous! Besides, who cares if your opponent doesn't have any creatures? You will probably be playing with HORDES of white creatures. The life gain can turn into time advantage as you set up your forces. With rebels, white weenie, and Maro
Maro
MaroSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
R
Number:
241
Artist:
Stuart Griffin
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Maro's power and toughness are each equal to the number of cards in your hand.
-skin decks for white, this creature is a confident choice.

RUNNERS UP: Creatures that tap other creatures are good. Master Decoy
Master Decoy
Master DecoySet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Soldier
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Phil Foglio
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
W, T: Tap target creature.
is one of my favorites. Enchantments can also do the same thing (Pacifism
Pacifism
PacifismSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
33
Artist:
Robert Bliss
Text:
Enchanted creature can't attack or block.
and Shackles
Shackles
ShacklesSet: Exodus
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
18
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Text:
Enchanted creature does not untap during its controller's untap phase.W: Return Shackles to owner's hand.
) and render your opponent's forces useless.

GREEN
Rancor
Rancor
RancorSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
110
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Enchanted creature gains +2/+0 and trample.When Rancor is put into a graveyard from play, return Rancor to owner's hand.
is the best. Hands down - no debate - no contest! This was THE draft card from Urza
Urza
UrzaSet: Vanguard
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Character
Rarity:
X
Number:
7
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Power:
-1
Toughness:
+10
Text:
3: Urza deals one damage to target creature or player.
's Legacy. Remember in booster draft when you got passed an awesome Legacy rare in the second pick? It's probably because Rancor
Rancor
RancorSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
110
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Enchanted creature gains +2/+0 and trample.When Rancor is put into a graveyard from play, return Rancor to owner's hand.
was the first pick. Just go through the rancor test: think of a crappy common creature. Got it? Now, imagine that card with rancor on it! Much better. This card has the ´´Empyrial Armor
Empyrial Armor
Empyrial ArmorSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
D. Alexander Gregory
Text:
Enchanted creature gets +X/+X, where X is equal to the number of cards in your hand.
´´ factor going for it! It makes crappy creatures playable. Maybe the creatures won't be Maro
Maro
MaroSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elemental
Rarity:
R
Number:
241
Artist:
Stuart Griffin
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Maro's power and toughness are each equal to the number of cards in your hand.
big, but this is a threat that comes back to your hand when the creature goes away. The pain keeps coming to your opponent.

Blastoderm
Blastoderm
BlastodermSet: Nemesis
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Beast
Rarity:
C
Number:
102
Artist:
Eric Peterson
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Fading 3 (This creature comes into play with three fade counters on it. At the beginning of your upkeep, remove a fade counter from it. If you can't, sacrifice it.) Blastoderm can't be the target of spells or abilities.
is an easy choice. You can't put Rancor
Rancor
RancorSet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
110
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Enchanted creature gains +2/+0 and trample.When Rancor is put into a graveyard from play, return Rancor to owner's hand.
on it, but you don't really need to. Very few common creatures can stand up to its beating. You are sure to get some kills from it, as fifteen to the head doesn't make many mages happy. It is a fattie for four, and is sure to cause everyone (expect the next creature in my list) some hassles.

River Boa
River Boa
River BoaSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
U
Number:
249
Artist:
Steve White
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Islandwalk (This creature is unblockable if defending player controls an island.) G: Regenerate River Boa.
is the nightmare match for many decks. For only G1, it is a 2/1, island walking, and regenerating creature. Blocking? Not a problem! It can get rid of white weenies and goblins without ever going to the graveyard. It is the Ultimate defense from an indestructable creature. Side note: for the newer players, River Boa
River Boa
River BoaSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
U
Number:
249
Artist:
Steve White
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Islandwalk (This creature is unblockable if defending player controls an island.) G: Regenerate River Boa.
was common in Visions
Visions
VisionsSet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
NéNé Thomas
Text:
Look at the top five cards of any library. You may then shuffle that library.
(black border too)!

RUNNERS UP: Cards that pump are always useful. Giant Growth
Giant Growth
Giant GrowthSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Sandra Everingham
Text:
Target creature gains +3/+3 until end of turn.
, Invigorate
Invigorate
InvigorateSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
254
Artist:
Dan Frazier
Text:
If you control a forest, you may have an opponent gain 3 life instead of paying Invigorate's mana cost.Target creature gets +4/+4 until end of turn.
, Briar Shield
Briar Shield
Briar ShieldSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Scott Kirschner
Text:
Enchanted creature gets +1/+1.Sacrifice Briar Shield: Enchanted creature gets +3/+3 until end of turn.
and Seal of Strength
Seal of Strength
Seal of StrengthSet: Nemesis
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
C
Number:
115
Artist:
Christopher Moeller
Text:
Sacrifice Seal of Strength: Target creature gets +3/+3 until end of turn.
are my top four. Land Grant
Land Grant
Land GrantSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
255
Artist:
D. Alexander Gregory
Text:
If you have no land cards in hand, you may reveal your hand instead of paying Land Grant's mana cost.Search your library for a forest card and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.
is another great utility card. I always run four of them in place of four forests. Who cares if my opponent can see my hand? I am going to smash him anyway. Lastly, many players swear by the Rogue Elephant
Rogue Elephant
Rogue ElephantSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Elephant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Steve White
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Rogue Elephant comes into play, sacrifice a forest or bury Rogue Elephant.
. The 3/3 creature for one green (and sacrificing a land) is a MEAN way to start the game. However, I have trouble recommending it for the first evil red card on my list of Power commons.

RED
Lightning Bolt
Lightning Bolt
Lightning BoltSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Text:
Lightning Bolt does 3 damage to one target.
is cheap, always useful, and KILLS ROGUE ELEPHANT! To be honest, those aren't the only three reasons why I like this card. It can be a great finish to a player or creature. The card was removed from fifth edition because the card was ´´under-costed´´. We saw the same fate with Incinerate
Incinerate
IncinerateSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Incinerate deals 3 damage to target creature or player. Creatures damaged by Incinerate cannot regenerate this turn.
in sixth edition. No matter how you use it, Lightning Bolt
Lightning Bolt
Lightning BoltSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Text:
Lightning Bolt does 3 damage to one target.
is a power burn card.

Fireblast
Fireblast
FireblastSet: Visions
Cost:
6
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Michael Danza
Text:
You may sacrifice two mountains instead of paying Fireblast's casting cost. Fireblast deals 4 damage to target creature or player.
is the Lightning Bolt
Lightning Bolt
Lightning BoltSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Text:
Lightning Bolt does 3 damage to one target.
's older cousin. Not too many people pay the RR4 casting cost. Sacrificing lands never seemed a problem when playing a Sligh deck or goblin deck. This card makes people worry when their life totals eight and the red mage has a hand full of cards and a pile of mountains. Burn, burn, burn!

Mogg Fanatic
Mogg Fanatic
Mogg FanaticSet: Tempest
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Goblin
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Brom
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Mogg Fanatic: Mogg Fanatic deals 1 damage to target creature or player.
is extremely good for its casting cost. It's a 1/1 for one red, it can get some early hits, and it can always be used on the player or other worthy target (see Soul Warden
Soul Warden
Soul WardenSet: Exodus
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cleric
Rarity:
C
Number:
21
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Whenever any other creature comes into play, gain 1 life.
). With sixth edition rules, the goblin got even stronger! For example: ´´I'll block with the Mogg fanatic. Damage on the stack. Then, I will sacrifice it to do a point to the creature (or you).´´ Amazing. In some burn decks which contain highly efficient burn-to-cost spells, the Mogg Fanatic
Mogg Fanatic
Mogg FanaticSet: Tempest
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Goblin
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Brom
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Mogg Fanatic: Mogg Fanatic deals 1 damage to target creature or player.
is the solo creature. Clear
Clear
ClearSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
7
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
Destroy target enchantment.Cycling 2 (You may pay 2 and discard this card from your hand to draw a card. Play this ability as an instant.)
the path, burn everything else away, and get them within fire distance.

RUNNERS UP: Kindle
Kindle
KindleSet: Tempest
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Text:
Kindle deals to target creature or player an amount of damage equal to 2 plus the number of Kindle cards in all graveyards.
, Shock
Shock
ShockSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
206
Artist:
Randy Gallegos
Text:
Shock deals 2 damage to target creature or player.
, and Rolling Thunder
Rolling Thunder
Rolling ThunderSet: Tempest
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Richard Thomas
Text:
Rolling Thunder deals X damage divided any way you choose among any number of target creatures and/or players.
are great for good burning. In the category, ´´best surprise for your opponent´´ would be Blood Lust
Blood Lust
Blood LustSet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Anson Maddocks
Text:
Target creature gets +4/-4 until end of turn. If this reduces creature's toughness to less than 1, creature's toughness becomes 1.
. Turning a goblin into a 5/1 on turn two is a beating. In addition, a Blood Lust
Blood Lust
Blood LustSet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Anson Maddocks
Text:
Target creature gets +4/-4 until end of turn. If this reduces creature's toughness to less than 1, creature's toughness becomes 1.
can get rid of that pesky Blastoderm
Blastoderm
BlastodermSet: Nemesis
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Beast
Rarity:
C
Number:
102
Artist:
Eric Peterson
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Fading 3 (This creature comes into play with three fade counters on it. At the beginning of your upkeep, remove a fade counter from it. If you can't, sacrifice it.) Blastoderm can't be the target of spells or abilities.
as long as you have a creature. I can't forget my favorite combo of all time with commons. Goblin and Goblin Grenade
Goblin Grenade
Goblin GrenadeSet: Fallen Empires
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
114
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Text:
Sacrifice a Goblin to have Goblin Grenade deal 5 damage to one target.
! Boom!

Stay tuned for the next installment when I go over blue, black, artifact, gold and land commons!


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