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CardShark Content - Michael Potter (2/3/2005)

It has been a while since I’ve written. The simple answer is I got busy and basically only played net decks for quite a while to so-so finishes. The longer explanation is that my company got taken over, I was made CFO of the new, merged company, and now I live in Singapore. The good news is that Singapore has a very active Magic scene. The bad news is that Constructed tournaments were few and far between as Draft seems to dominate.

I went to the first Prerelease flight at Suntec Exhibition Hall in Singapore. This is the second Prerelease I’ve been to in Singapore both were run fairly smoothly by the judging staff. There is one thing that I have noticed about Singapore Sealed deck tournaments that is not the same as other places I’ve played – sorting the cards. I’m very used to the judges announcing that players should alphabetize there cards after sorting by color. Unfortunately, that is not requested in Singapore. What that means is that you often get handed a set of randomly ordered cards. In general, they’re at least sorted by color, but I was once handed a completely unsorted mess at a prior tournament.

A request to sort the cards makes checking the list to catch errors before deck building much easier. It is a good procedure to follow, and gives you more time to worry about constructing your deck vs. the paperwork part of registering. I passed on my observation to the judging staff there and they were open to it.

Prerelease card pool

White

Genju of the Fields
Genju of the Fields
Genju of the FieldsSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Plains
Rarity:
U
Number:
5
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
2: Until end of turn, enchanted Plains becomes a 2/5 white Spirit creature with "Whenever this creature deals damage, you gain that much life." It's still a land. When enchanted Plains is put into a graveyard, you may return Genju of the Fields from your graveyard to your hand.

Harsh Deceiver
Harsh Deceiver
Harsh DeceiverSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
11
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
1: Look at the top card of your library. 2: Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a land, untap Harsh Deceiver and it gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Play this ability only once each turn.

Heart of Light
Heart of Light
Heart of LightSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
6
Artist:
Luca Zontini
Text:
Prevent all damage that would be dealt to and dealt by enchanted creature.

Hundred-Talon Strike
Innocence Kami
Innocence Kami
Innocence KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
18
Artist:
Mark Zug
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
W, T: Tap target creature. Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, untap Innocence Kami.

Kami of False Hope
Kami of False Hope
Kami of False HopeSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
10
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Kami of False Hope Prevent all combat damage that would be dealt this turn.

Kami of Tattered Shoji
Kami of Tattered Shoji
Kami of Tattered ShojiSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
11
Artist:
Shishizaru
Power:
2
Toughness:
5
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, Kami of Tattered Shoji gains flying until end of turn.
x 2
Kami of the Painted Road
Kami of the Painted Road
Kami of the Painted RoadSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
23
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, Kami of the Painted Road gains protection from the color of your choice until end of turn.

Kami of the Palace Fields
Kami of the Palace Fields
Kami of the Palace FieldsSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
6
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
U
Number:
24
Artist:
Matt Cavotta
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying, first strike Soulshift 5 (When this is put into a graveyard from play, you may return target Spirit card with converted mana cost 5 or less from your graveyard to your hand.)

Kitsune Blademaster
Kitsune Blademaster
Kitsune BlademasterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Fox Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
25
Artist:
Keith Garletts
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
First strike Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

Lantern Kami
Lantern Kami
Lantern KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
32
Artist:
John Avon
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying

Moonlight Strider x 2
Mothrider Samurai
Mothrider Samurai
Mothrider SamuraiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Mark Zug
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

Pious Kitsune
Pious Kitsune
Pious KitsuneSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Fox Cleric
Rarity:
C
Number:
38
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a devotion counter on Pious Kitsune. Then if a creature named Eight-and-a-Half-Tails is in play, you gain 1 life for each devotion counter on Pious Kitsune. T, Remove a devotion counter from Pious Kitsune: You gain 1 life.

Silverstorm Samurai
Silverstorm Samurai
Silverstorm SamuraiSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
6
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Fox Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
22
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
You may play Silverstorm Samurai any time you could play an instant. Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

Takeno’s Cavalry

Blue

Consuming Vortex
Consuming Vortex
Consuming VortexSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Return target creature to its owner's hand. Splice onto Arcane 3U (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Heed the Mists
Heed the Mists
Heed the MistsSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
36
Artist:
Christopher Rush
Text:
Put the top card of your library into your graveyard, then draw cards equal to that card's converted mana cost.

Hisoka’s Defiance
Floodbringer
Floodbringer
FloodbringerSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Ittoku
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Tap target land.

Higure, the Still Wind
Kami of Twisted Reflection
Kami of Twisted Reflection
Kami of Twisted ReflectionSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
71
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Sacrifice Kami of Twisted Reflection: Return target creature you control to its owner's hand.

Minamo
Minamo
MinamoSet: Planechase
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Plane
Sub Type:
Kamigawa
Rarity:
C
Number:
24
Artist:
Charles Urbach
Text:
Whenever a player casts a spell, that player may draw a card. Whenever you roll {C}, each player may return a blue card from his or her graveyard to his or her hand.
’s Meddling
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.

Petals of Insight
Petals of Insight
Petals of InsightSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
79
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Text:
Look at the top three cards of your library. You may put those cards on the bottom of your library in any order. If you do, return Petals of Insight to its owner's hand. Otherwise, draw three cards.

Psychic Puppetry
Psychic Puppetry
Psychic PuppetrySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
80
Artist:
Joel Thomas
Text:
Tap or untap target permanent. Splice onto Arcane U (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Quillmane Baku
Quillmane Baku
Quillmane BakuSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
48
Artist:
David Martin
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Quillmane Baku. 1, T, Remove X ki counters from Quillmane Baku Return target creature with converted mana cost X or less to its owner's hand.

Ribbons of the Reikai
Ribbons of the Reikai
Ribbons of the ReikaiSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
50
Artist:
Martina Pilcerova
Text:
Draw a card for each Spirit you control.

Sift Through Sands
Sift Through Sands
Sift Through SandsSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Text:
Draw two cards, then discard a card. If you played a spell named Peer Through Depths and a spell named Reach Through Mists this turn, you may search your library for a card named The Unspeakable, put it into play, then shuffle your library.

Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami CloudskaterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Rogue
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand: Draw a card, then discard a card.

Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami MindsweeperSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
52
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Target player puts the top two cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard.

Soratami Savant
Soratami Savant
Soratami SavantSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
90
Artist:
Jim Nelson
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying 3, Return a land you control to its owner's hand: Counter target spell unless its controller pays 3.

Student of Elements
Student of Elements
Student of ElementsSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
93
Artist:
Ittoku
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
When Student of Elements has flying, flip it. ----- Tobita, Master of Winds Legendary Creature - Human Wizard 3/3 Creatures you control have flying.

Veil of Secrecy
Veil of Secrecy
Veil of SecrecySet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
59
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Text:
Target creature is unblockable and can't be the target of spells or abilities this turn. Splice onto Arcane—Return a blue creature you control to its owner's hand. (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Walker of Secret Ways
Walker of Secret Ways
Walker of Secret WaysSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Ninja
Rarity:
U
Number:
60
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Power:
1
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 Walker of Secret Ways deals combat damage to a player, look at that player's hand. 1U: Return target Ninja you control to its owner's hand. Play this ability only during your turn.


Black

Ashen-Skin Zubera
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.

Blessing of Leeches
Blessing of Leeches
Blessing of LeechesSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
62
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Text:
You may play Blessing of Leeches any time you could play an instant. At the beginning of your upkeep, you lose 1 life. 0: Regenerate enchanted creature.

Call for Blood
Call for Blood
Call for BloodSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
63
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
As an additional cost to play Call for Blood, sacrifice a creature. Target creature gets -X/-X until end of turn, where X is the sacrificed creature's power.

Cruel Deceiver
Cruel Deceiver
Cruel DeceiverSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
106
Artist:
Nottsuo
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
1: Look at the top card of your library. 2: Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a land, Cruel Deceiver gains “Whenever Cruel Deceiver deals damage to a creature, destroy that creature” until end of turn. Play this ability only once each turn.

Cursed Ronin
Cursed Ronin
Cursed RoninSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
107
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.) B: Cursed Ronin gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

Distress
Distress
DistressSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
111
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Text:
Target player reveals his or her hand. You choose a nonland card from it. That player discards that card.

Hideous Laughter
Hideous Laughter
Hideous LaughterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
115
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn. Splice onto Arcane 3BB (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Horobi’s Whisper
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi ShortfangSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Rogue
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1B, T: Target opponent discards a card. Then if that player has no cards in hand, flip Nezumi Shortfang. ----- Stabwhisker the Odious Legendary Creature - Rat Shaman 3/3 At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player loses 1 life for each card fewer than three in his or her hand.

Rag Dealer
Rag Dealer
Rag DealerSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Rogue
Rarity:
C
Number:
138
Artist:
Ralph Horsley
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
2B, T: Remove up to three target cards in a single graveyard from the game.

Rend Flesh
Rend Flesh
Rend FleshSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
140
Artist:
Stephen Tappin
Text:
Destroy target non-Spirit creature.

Skullsnatcher
Skullsnatcher
SkullsnatcherSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Artist:
Matt Cavotta
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu B (B, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Skullsnatcher deals combat damage to a player, remove up to two target cards in that player's graveyard from the game.

Stir the Grave
Stir the Grave
Stir the GraveSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
85
Artist:
Jim Nelson
Text:
Return target creature card with converted mana cost X or less from your graveyard to play.

Takenuma Bleeder
Takenuma Bleeder
Takenuma BleederSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ogre Shaman
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever Takenuma Bleeder attacks or blocks, you lose 1 life if you don't control a Demon.


Red

Akki Blizzard
Blizzard
BlizzardSet: Ice Age
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Anson Maddocks
Text:
Cumulative Upkeep: 2You cannot cast Blizzard if you control no snow-covered lands. Creatures with flying do not untap during their controller's untap phase.
-Herder x 2
Blademane Baku
Blademane Baku
Blademane BakuSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
95
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Blademane Baku. 1, Remove X ki counters from Blademane Baku For each counter removed, Blademane Baku gets +2/+0 until end of turn.

Cunning Bandit
Cunning Bandit
Cunning BanditSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Warrior
Rarity:
U
Number:
99
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Cunning Bandit. At end of turn, if there are two or more ki counters on Cunning Bandit, you may flip it. ---- Azamuki, Treachery Incarnate Legendary Creature — Spirit 5/2 Remove a ki counter from Azamuki, Treachery Incarnate Gain control of target creature until end of turn.

Flames of the Blood Hand
Flames of the Blood Hand
Flames of the Blood HandSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
101
Artist:
Aleksi Briclot
Text:
Flames of the Blood Hand deals 4 damage to target player. The damage can't be prevented. If that player would gain life this turn, that player gains no life instead.

Frostling
Frostling
FrostlingSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
103
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Frostling Frostling deals 1 damage to target creature.

Glacial Ray
Glacial Ray
Glacial RaySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
168
Artist:
Jim Murray
Text:
Glacial Ray deals 2 damage to target creature or player. Splice onto Arcane 1R (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Hearth Kami
Hearth Kami
Hearth KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
171
Artist:
Luca Zontini
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, Sacrifice Hearth Kami: Destroy target artifact with converted mana cost X.

Heartless Hidetsugu
Heartless Hidetsugu
Heartless HidetsuguSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Red
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Ogre Shaman
Rarity:
R
Number:
107
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
4
Toughness:
3
Text:
T: Heartless Hidetsugu deals to each player damage equal to half that player's life total, rounded down.

Kumano’s Blessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1

Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin HoundmasterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
184
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Haste Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)

Stone Rain
Stone Rain
Stone RainSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Daniel Gelon
Text:
Destroy target land.

Soul of Magma
Soul of Magma
Soul of MagmaSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
189
Artist:
Darrell Riche
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, Soul of Magma deals 1 damage to target creature.

Sowing Salt
Sowing Salt
Sowing SaltSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
97
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Text:
Remove target nonbasic land from the game. Search its controller's graveyard, hand, and library for all copies of that card and remove them from the game. That player then shuffles his or her library.

Torrent of Stone
Torrent of Stone
Torrent of StoneSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
119
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Torrent of Stone deals 4 damage to target creature. Splice onto Arcane—Sacrifice two mountains. (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Unnatural Speed
Unnatural Speed
Unnatural SpeedSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
197
Artist:
Wayne Reynolds
Text:
Target creature gains haste until end of turn.


Green

Azusa, Lost but Seeking
Azusa, Lost but Seeking
Azusa, Lost but SeekingSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Legendary Creature
Sub Type:
Human Monk
Rarity:
R
Number:
201
Artist:
Todd Lockwood
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
You may play two additional lands on each of your turns.

Budoka Pupil
Budoka Pupil
Budoka PupilSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Monk
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
Shishizaru
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Budoka Pupil. At end of turn, if there are two or more ki counters on Budoka Pupil, you may flip it. ---- Ichiga, Who Topples Oaks Legendary Creature — Spirit 4/3 Trample Remove a ki counter from Ichiga, Who Topples Oaks Target creature gets +2/+2 until end of turn.

Child of Thorns
Child of Thorns
Child of ThornsSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
123
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Child of Thorns Target creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

Gale Force
Gale Force
Gale ForceSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
209
Artist:
Lars Grant-West
Text:
Gale Force deals 5 damage to each creature with flying.

Humble
Humble
HumbleSet: Urza's Saga
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
18
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Text:
Target creature loses all abilities and is a 0/1 creature until end of turn.
IEJ1ZG9rYQ==
Joyous Respite
Joyous Respite
Joyous RespiteSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
216
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Text:
You gain 1 life for each land you control.

Moss Kami
Moss Kami
Moss KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
6
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
228
Artist:
Hugh Jamieson
Power:
5
Toughness:
5
Text:
Trample

Nayure’s Will
Orochi Sustainer
Orochi Sustainer
Orochi SustainerSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake Shaman
Rarity:
C
Number:
236
Artist:
rk post
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.

Petalmane Baku
Petalmane Baku
Petalmane BakuSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
139
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Petalmane Baku. 1, Remove X ki counters from Petalmane Baku Add X mana of any one color to your mana pool.

Sakura-Tribe Springcaller
Scaled Hulk
Scaled Hulk
Scaled HulkSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
6
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
143
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, Scaled Hulk gets +2/+2 until end of turn.

Sosuke’s Summons
Uproot
Uproot
UprootSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
149
Artist:
Heather Hudson
Text:
Put target land on top of its owner's library.
x 2
Venerable Kumo
Venerable Kumo
Venerable KumoSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
248
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
Venerable Kumo may block as though it had flying. Soulshift 4 (When this is put into a graveyard from play, you may return target Spirit card with converted mana cost 4 or less from your graveyard to your hand.)

Vine Kami
Vine Kami
Vine KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
7
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
249
Artist:
Tsutomu Kawade
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Vine Kami can't be blocked except by two or more creatures. Soulshift 6 (When this is put into a graveyard from play, you may return target Spirit card with converted mana cost 6 or less from your graveyard to your hand.)

Wear Away
Wear Away
Wear AwaySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
250
Artist:
Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
Destroy target artifact or enchantment. Splice onto Arcane 3G (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)


Artifacts

Neko-Te
Nine-Ringed Bo
Sensei’s Divining Top

Lands

Cloudcrest Lake
Cloudcrest Lake
Cloudcrest LakeSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
274
Artist:
John Avon
Text:
T: Add 1 to your mana pool. T: Add W or U to your mana pool. Cloudcrest Lake doesn't untap during your next untap step.


Before I list the actual deck I built, let me go over the basic rules I try and follow in Sealed Deck. At a Prerelease I tend to bend them a little because I like to play with the new cards as much as I can, but they’re still a general guideline.

1) Power over consistency. With 6 packs of cards (Tournament pack plus 3 boosters), there is a good chance that you’ll open a bomb. However, you do not have the advantage of drafting and filling in holes that you see. So I’ll go to three colors and stretch my mana base a little to fit in the best cards I can.
2) Evasion and removal. This is a classic building block for a deck. If your opponent can’t block your creatures and you can kill his creatures, you should win most of your games. Flying and Fear
Fear
FearSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Target creature cannot be blocked by any creatures except black creatures and artifact creatures.
are the two most common forms of Evasion. Protection From can act as Evasion in a pinch. Red and Black have different flavours of removal. Red tends to remove creatures via direct, targeted damage or through an effect that hits all creatures at once for some damage. Red has more trouble removing Fat creatures but most of the burn can also be pointed at your opponent to end the game then and there. Black point removal usually prevents Regeneration
Regeneration
RegenerationSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Quinton Hoover
Text:
G: Target creature regenerates.
, but it typically cannot hit another Black creature. Black mass removal tends to give –x/-x which kills creatures through game rules.
White has limited removal, either 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.
based enchantments or cards that destroy attacking creatures or creatures that have already damaged you. There almost always is some sort of 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.
available. White also is good against Enchantments. Blue can bounce but rarely has any other form of removal either than stretching it a little and saying that counter spells are a form of removal. Green normally has some sort of mass damage against Flyers available, but removal is usually forcing smaller creatures to block big creatures. It can deal with enchantments and artifacts fairly well.
What this usually means to me is that I start off wanting to play either Red or Black to get access to the better removal available.
3) If I can’t get evasion, then I go for large Green creatures. Add in a little removal to take care of a blocker or two and attack pretty much every time it makes any sense at all. Eventually they will not be able to deal with whatever monster you drop on the table and then you roll over them with it. Concentrate
Concentrate
ConcentrateSet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
78
Artist:
Glen Angus & Arnie Swekel
Text:
Draw three cards.
on mana acceleration so that the bigger creatures hit a few turns before they are supposed to.
4) Aggression
Aggression
AggressionSet: Ice Age
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Rick Emond
Text:
Target non-wall creature gains first strike and trample. At the end of its controller's turn, destroy that creature if it did not attack that turn.
pays. It is harder in Sealed compared to Draft to build a nice aggressive curve, but it can be done. Typically White has the best out of the gate creatures for low cost and can be coupled with red or Black for removal to clear the way. Red/Black is also super aggressive.

When I looked through the card pool for the first time, I liked the Green Fat and I liked that it was splashable. However, Green had no real combat trick spells (other than what was on the table in plain site) and no mana fixing. Acceleration was there, but no fixing. White was a mixed bag. No Moth, no Cage of Hands
Cage of Hands
Cage of HandsSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
3
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
Enchanted creature can't attack or block. 1W: Return Cage of Hands to its owner's hand.
, and the curve didn’t look smooth enough. I had trouble seeing where it could establish early tempo and then hold down the ground while Flying in for the last little bit of damage. So I didn’t like either White or Green as my main choices.

Red had Glacial Ray
Glacial Ray
Glacial RaySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
168
Artist:
Jim Murray
Text:
Glacial Ray deals 2 damage to target creature or player. Splice onto Arcane 1R (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
which often is a bomb and easily splashable. However, it was really light in usable creatures. I decided to keep it as a splash colour and look at what Blue and Black had to offer.

Of course, I liked Blue because of the “Super Ninja” Higure. Getting another creature is card advantage and then making Ninja’s unblockable counted as Evasion. I also had a few good Ninja’s as well. The rest of Blue was very solid with Flyers, Bounce, and Counter Magic. Black had very good removal (three kill spells and a sweeper).

When I looked at the creatures I was using in Blue and Black, I decided that I needed more and added 2 Red creatures. I ended up with the deck like this:

Land:

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

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

3 x Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.


Creatures

Higure, the Still Wind
Walker of the Secret Ways
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.

Skullsnatcher
Skullsnatcher
SkullsnatcherSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Artist:
Matt Cavotta
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu B (B, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Skullsnatcher deals combat damage to a player, remove up to two target cards in that player's graveyard from the game.


Ashen-skin Zubera
Cruel Deceiver
Cruel Deceiver
Cruel DeceiverSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
106
Artist:
Nottsuo
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
1: Look at the top card of your library. 2: Reveal the top card of your library. If it's a land, Cruel Deceiver gains “Whenever Cruel Deceiver deals damage to a creature, destroy that creature” until end of turn. Play this ability only once each turn.

Cursed Ronin
Cursed Ronin
Cursed RoninSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
107
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.) B: Cursed Ronin gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi ShortfangSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Rogue
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1B, T: Target opponent discards a card. Then if that player has no cards in hand, flip Nezumi Shortfang. ----- Stabwhisker the Odious Legendary Creature - Rat Shaman 3/3 At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player loses 1 life for each card fewer than three in his or her hand.

Takenuma Bleeder
Takenuma Bleeder
Takenuma BleederSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ogre Shaman
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Kev Walker
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever Takenuma Bleeder attacks or blocks, you lose 1 life if you don't control a Demon.

Floodbringer
Floodbringer
FloodbringerSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
C
Number:
34
Artist:
Ittoku
Power:
1
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Tap target land.

Quillmane Baku
Quillmane Baku
Quillmane BakuSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
48
Artist:
David Martin
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Quillmane Baku. 1, T, Remove X ki counters from Quillmane Baku Return target creature with converted mana cost X or less to its owner's hand.

Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami CloudskaterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Rogue
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand: Draw a card, then discard a card.

Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami MindsweeperSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
52
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Target player puts the top two cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard.

Soratami Servant
Hearth Kami
Hearth Kami
Hearth KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
171
Artist:
Luca Zontini
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, Sacrifice Hearth Kami: Destroy target artifact with converted mana cost X.

Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin HoundmasterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
184
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Haste Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)


Spells

Sensei’s Divining Top
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.

Horobi’s Whisper
Rend Flesh
Rend Flesh
Rend FleshSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
140
Artist:
Stephen Tappin
Text:
Destroy target non-Spirit creature.

Consuming Vortex
Consuming Vortex
Consuming VortexSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
54
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Return target creature to its owner's hand. Splice onto Arcane 3U (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)

Hisoka’s Defiance
Glacial Ray
Glacial Ray
Glacial RaySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
168
Artist:
Jim Murray
Text:
Glacial Ray deals 2 damage to target creature or player. Splice onto Arcane 1R (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)


By far the biggest error I made was not running Hideous Laughter
Hideous Laughter
Hideous LaughterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
115
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn. Splice onto Arcane 3BB (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
main deck. There is almost no mass removal in the set. I was planning on winning in the long run via Flyers, most of who would be opposed by other small flyers. I was worried about killing my own weenies, but if my opponent had that much of a jump on me that I had to use it, it still would have been a good trade.

This is the type of error that makes me an OK Sealed deck player at best. It is easy to get excited about a Dragon and start planning victory on its back, but my experience is that it will come out Turn 6 if you hit every land drop. Before that there will be a lot of damage coming from smaller creatures. If you can get very good card advantage via mass removal, then you have a much better chance of dealing with that one Dragon or living long enough to cast the Dragon. I ended up sideboarding it in almost every game 2 which is a sign it should have been included in the main deck.

Since I was running red as a splash colour, I tried to stick to aggressive creatures with only one R in their casting cost. I considered Frostling
Frostling
FrostlingSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
103
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Frostling Frostling deals 1 damage to target creature.
, but my curve was low and I wanted more power for the mana. Hearth Kami
Hearth Kami
Hearth KamiSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
171
Artist:
Luca Zontini
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
X, Sacrifice Hearth Kami: Destroy target artifact with converted mana cost X.
has a decent ability as there are a few Artifacts that can be very tough to deal with.

Sensei’s Divining Top is almost always a must include for me when building a deck. It smoothes out your draws and lets you dig for answers.

Neko-Te was tempting as it is either removal or an extra point of damage through each turn. If I put it on a Flyer, it either takes a blocker out of commission, even if it kills my attacker, or it gives me one more damage to race with. I decided not to run it because +1/+0 for 5 mana didn’t seem like the best use of my curve.

Torrent of Stone
Torrent of Stone
Torrent of StoneSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
119
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Torrent of Stone deals 4 damage to target creature. Splice onto Arcane—Sacrifice two mountains. (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
and Flames of the Blood Hand
Flames of the Blood Hand
Flames of the Blood HandSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
101
Artist:
Aleksi Briclot
Text:
Flames of the Blood Hand deals 4 damage to target player. The damage can't be prevented. If that player would gain life this turn, that player gains no life instead.
were both tempting. Both are limited Burn in that they target only a creature of a player. However, there are few creatures with greater than 4 toughness and 4 damage for 3 mana at Instant speed is very good. I kept both those cards on the tops of my sideboard with extra mountains included.

I was happy that my playables included Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami MindsweeperSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
52
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Target player puts the top two cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard.
and Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi ShortfangSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Rogue
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1B, T: Target opponent discards a card. Then if that player has no cards in hand, flip Nezumi Shortfang. ----- Stabwhisker the Odious Legendary Creature - Rat Shaman 3/3 At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player loses 1 life for each card fewer than three in his or her hand.
. It is reasonably common to stall out, especially against other players that rely on Flying. Both of these cards provide an alternate win condition and Shortfang can control their hand for quite a while as well. The alternate win conditions were relevant in two of my matches later that day. Milling your opponent’s deck actually is a decent ability in Limited play because decks are only 40 cards and the removal tends not to be as consistent. If Shortfang Flips, it has 3 toughness which makes it harder to kill.

The only other two creatures I want to comment on are Quillmane Baku
Quillmane Baku
Quillmane BakuSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
48
Artist:
David Martin
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Whenever you play a Spirit or Arcane spell, you may put a ki counter on Quillmane Baku. 1, T, Remove X ki counters from Quillmane Baku Return target creature with converted mana cost X or less to its owner's hand.
and Skullsnatcher
Skullsnatcher
SkullsnatcherSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Artist:
Matt Cavotta
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu B (B, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Skullsnatcher deals combat damage to a player, remove up to two target cards in that player's graveyard from the game.
. The Quillmane was not very effective. The high casting cost and lack of many Spirit
Spirit
SpiritSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying
in my deck meant that it really didn’t pick up many counters. If I’m playing a Blue creature that costs 5 mana, I would hope that it flies. Skullsnatcher
Skullsnatcher
SkullsnatcherSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Ninja
Rarity:
C
Number:
84
Artist:
Matt Cavotta
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
Ninjutsu B (B, Return an unblocked attacker you control to hand Put this card into play from your hand tapped and attacking.) Whenever Skullsnatcher deals combat damage to a player, remove up to two target cards in that player's graveyard from the game.
is efficient for Black. 2 power for 2 mana with an ability that can be very useful to shut down Spirit
Spirit
SpiritSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying
craft can make it very useful.

I’m not going to provide a detailed account of every round and every game. Instead, I’m going to try and focus on the main lesson I learned from each round or discuss some other aspect of the game.

Round 1 - Sherwin Xie Ying

The first game was a perfect example of the temptation that Divining Top gives you. I had a one land hand, the Top, and low casting cost spells. I kept the hand. There were no lands 3 cards deep into the deck. My opponent’s deck was slow and I eventually hit land, but I never got close to catching up. The game took a fairly long time to play.

Game 2 was different, and the better quality of my creatures coupled with a reasonably fast start ended in my victory. My plan of evasion and removal worked perfectly. I had sided in Hideous Laughter
Hideous Laughter
Hideous LaughterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
115
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn. Splice onto Arcane 3BB (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
(didn’t draw it, but you can add the fact that I sided it in to every round description for the rest of the tournament). However, there were only 4 minutes to finish.

Game 3 I drew a very fast hand. I quickly got damage through and used removal on the one creature he was able to cast. I had a clock on the table fast enough to win and more removal in my hand, including Glacial Ray
Glacial Ray
Glacial RaySet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
C
Number:
168
Artist:
Jim Murray
Text:
Glacial Ray deals 2 damage to target creature or player. Splice onto Arcane 1R (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
.

Time was called. We finished the active player’s turn (my opponent) and suddenly there was a judge there to collect our slip saying that there were no extra turns. There had been no announcement of this and that is against the rules for sanctioned tournaments:

116. End-of-Match Procedure
If the match time limit is reached before a winner is determined, the active player (as defined in the Magic game rules) finishes his or her turn and five total additional turns are played. For example, time is called on player A's turn. Player A finishes his or her turn. Player B takes his or her turn, which is turn 1. Player A takes his or her turn, which is turn 2. Player B takes turn 3, player A takes turn 4, and player B takes the final turn, which is turn 5.

Players take any extra turns granted to them by card effects as they normally would during the course of the game, but any extra turn counts as one of the five end-of-match turns. Once the fifth turn is completed, the game finishes regardless of any remaining card-generated or end-of-match extra turns.

If the game finishes before the fifth turn is completed, the match is over and no new game begins.

If a judge assigned a time extension (because of a long ruling, deck check, or other reason), then the end-of-match procedure does not occur until the end of the time extension.

117. Determining a Match Winner
In Swiss rounds, the winner of a match is the player with the most game wins in the match. If both players have equal game wins, then the match is a draw.

In single-elimination rounds, matches may not end in a draw. After the normal end-of-match procedure is finished, the player with more game wins is the winner of the match. If both players in a single-elimination tournament have equal game wins when the normal end-of-match procedure is finished, the player with the highest life total becomes the winner of the current game in progress. In the event the players have equal life totals (or are between games and the game wins are tied), the game/match should continue until the first life total change that results in one player having a higher life total than the other.

I appealed to the head judge and we continued to step through the turns while the table judge went to get him. The head judge arrived and said that they had decided to not have the extra turns because of the tight schedule to run 2 flights that day and the number of people. I pointed out that there had been no announcement of that before the tournament began, that it wasn’t the usual rule and both of us had been playing for the 5 extra turns, and that we were on the last of the 5 turns and I had the win on the board and in my hand. The head judge thought about it and let us play the one extra turn. Before the beginning of the next round, they announced the fact that there were no extra turns this tournament.

I often see complaints about this or that judge. My experience has been pretty different overall. If you discuss something with them in a calm manner and present your argument based on the rules, they will almost always agree. In this case, we had a good judge. He realized that I was right and that is what the tournament rules say. Head Judges are the final say in their tournament, so he could have just said tough luck to me. Instead, he considered the fact that he and his staff could have been clearer about it and ruled for me. It helped that we were in the last of the 5 turns by then. By playing the extra turns while he was being fetched and by presenting an out to him that was going to take no more than 30 seconds more, he was able to rule for me and still not delay the tournament any more.

I know that Prereleases are special and have been bumped down to 8K just to make it even easier and more casual. However, they are sanctioned tournaments and the rules still apply there. It is a chance to explain tournament rules without severe consequences to new players when they make a mistake. That doesn’t mean you ignore the rules.

Round 2 – Eng Giap Tan

Prereleases draw all sorts of players. My opponent was nice, but he didn’t know all the rules very well (thought he could just randomly sack a Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.
when I bounced it to his hand while enchanted with a Genju). He also missed the fact that Bushido gives a +1/+1 pump and tried to kill my Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin Houndmaster
Ronin HoundmasterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Human Samurai
Rarity:
C
Number:
184
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Haste Bushido 1 (When this blocks or becomes blocked, it gets +1/+1 until end of turn.)
with a sacrificed Frostling
Frostling
FrostlingSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Number:
103
Artist:
Carl Critchlow
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Sacrifice Frostling Frostling deals 1 damage to target creature.
after damage was on the stack.

This round taught me a trick to save creatures. I was attacking and my opponent targeted an unblocked creature with removal. I could have used a Ninja in my hand to save it. Instead, I let it die and then realized what I could have done. My opponent wasn’t the only one making errors during our matches.

I ended up winning the round. This was mainly due to him having much better cards, but playing at least 4 (and maybe 5) colours to play them. I was glad that I had the Nine-Ringed Bo to bring in to help against the 6/1 Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.
. I actually lost the middle game of the match because he got a good mana draw and played bomb after bomb. Games 1 and 3 he struggled to get cards out of his hand because of colour problems.

I liked my opponent because he was obviously a casual player that came to the Prerelease just to have fun and see the new cards. It was also cool to see someone taking power over consistency to such an extreme.

Round 3 – Clement Y Fong

He had Ghostly Prison
Ghostly Prison
Ghostly PrisonSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
10
Artist:
Lars Grant-West
Text:
Creatures can't attack you unless their controller pays 2 for each creature attacking you. (This cost is paid as attackers are declared.)
. I had nothing that could deal with it other than paying mana and killing Flyers who could block my Flyers. He also had the Black Ninja that made me discard cards and the one that kills none Black creatures. I lost game 1.

Game 2, I had a creature light start and basically only got a 20 turn clock going using Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami Cloudskater
Soratami CloudskaterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Rogue
Rarity:
C
Number:
86
Artist:
Michael Sutfin
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand: Draw a card, then discard a card.
. About 6 or 7 turns into that plan the prison came down and momentum shifted to him as he no longer had to worry about me alpha striking to get the last little bit of damage through. We creature stalled and then he gained an advantage in the air.

Luckily, I had drawn and played my Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami Mindsweeper
Soratami MindsweeperSet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Moonfolk Wizard
Rarity:
U
Number:
52
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
1
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying 2, Return a land you control to its owner's hand Target player puts the top two cards of his or her library into his or her graveyard.
. Hideous Laughter
Hideous Laughter
Hideous LaughterSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Sub Type:
Arcane
Rarity:
U
Number:
115
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
All creatures get -2/-2 until end of turn. Splice onto Arcane 3BB (As you play an Arcane spell, you may reveal this card from your hand and pay its splice cost. If you do, add this card's effects to that spell.)
allowed me to live the one extra turn it took for me to deck him. As I mentioned earlier, alternatives win conditions are very important.

Games 1 and 2 took a long time to play (Sensei’s Divining Top adds time to each turn and, to be honest, I’m not a very fast paced player). So once again we had just started game 3 when time was called. The prize for 3-0-1 was the same as 3-1 so it made sense for one person to concede to the other. I had conceded to someone last Prerelease (to a different person) and wasn’t all fired up about conceding this time.

It almost went poorly when my opponent basically asked me what was in it for him if he conceded. I gave him the only answer I could, that he would have to rely on me being kind because I couldn’t promise him anything because that is Bribery
Bribery
BriberySet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
62
Artist:
Andrew Robinson
Text:
Search target opponent's library for a creature card and put that card into play under your control. That player then shuffles his or her library.
.

I think it was more of an English issue. Just about everyone in Singapore speaks English. Only it is not quite the normal English. Toss in a more Chinese sentence structure and local Magic slang and sometimes it is more English sounding than pure English. Of course, since I’m the visitor here, I remember that I’m the one with the accent that speaks funny.

In the end he conceded. I have always felt that it is a reasonably big favour to do so, and I did give him 2 of the packs I won to even things out. I’ll always do that. You can be a jerk if you want to, but the Magic community is always small and it will come back to haunt you some day.

The other interesting thing that happened this round was a warning (not recorded, just a stop doing that scolding) given out by the judge. Although English is the main language in Singapore, most of the teens to early 20’s speak Mandarin as well. There’s also a reasonable chance that they speak Malay. I speak more than English (grew up in Quebec so my French is good), but I know only a few words of Mandarin.

It is common for groups of people around the play tables to launch into speaking in Mandarin. It is disconcerting when you’re drafting or playing to have people behind you speaking in a language you don’t understand, but I’ve tried to ignore it as much as possible. A group of Clement’s friends were watching the game. From the tone of their words and the board position, I guessed they were ragging on him about being decked and then being in the position where a draw was the best he could do. The judge told them to stop talking about the game while it was going on.

Round 4 – Shihai Chen

I won this match because my opponent got discouraged. He had better cards than me but wasn’t an experienced player. In both games, he fell prey to an obvious trick and became discouraged. I won through another Ghostly Prison
Ghostly Prison
Ghostly PrisonSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Number:
10
Artist:
Lars Grant-West
Text:
Creatures can't attack you unless their controller pays 2 for each creature attacking you. (This cost is paid as attackers are declared.)
game 2 using Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi ShortfangSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Rogue
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1B, T: Target opponent discards a card. Then if that player has no cards in hand, flip Nezumi Shortfang. ----- Stabwhisker the Odious Legendary Creature - Rat Shaman 3/3 At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player loses 1 life for each card fewer than three in his or her hand.
. For some reason he kept playing lands he didn’t need and kept taking maximum damage from the ability.

He missed an obvious out when he had slapped a Ward of Piety
Ward of Piety
Ward of PietySet: Betrayers of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
U
Number:
28
Artist:
Tim Hildebrandt
Text:
1W: The next 1 damage that would be dealt to enchanted creature this turn is dealt to target creature or player instead.
onto his Bounce a creature Ninja. If I blocked it, he could kill me Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi Shortfang
Nezumi ShortfangSet: Champions of Kamigawa
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Rat Rogue
Rarity:
R
Number:
131
Artist:
Daren Bader
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1B, T: Target opponent discards a card. Then if that player has no cards in hand, flip Nezumi Shortfang. ----- Stabwhisker the Odious Legendary Creature - Rat Shaman 3/3 At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, that player loses 1 life for each card fewer than three in his or her hand.
. If I didn’t he could bounce it. I didn’t block and he bounced another random creature.

Eventually he gave up in both games and I became the proud winner of a tee shirt and 6 packs (which became 4 after I gave 2 to my second round opponent).

Overall, the Prerelease was fun to play in and I managed to hit up the dealers to get a bunch of random cards I was missing for a few Extended decks I was trying to play test. I like the new Ninjas, and I think that Horobi’s Whisper is one of the strongest removal spells in the set. However, I need some time to play with the new cards to see how they fit in Limited and Constructed. I didn’t see anything in the list that leapt out at me as being earth shattering in Extended, but I haven’t had time to look for subtle interactions.


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