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CardShark Content - Michael Webb (10/9/2002)

Lo all, it's been a long time since I've written an article for Card Shark. To be blunt, my interest in Magic died off for the summer, like it often does. After spending the warm months travelling about, riding roller coasters (as I tend to do) I've come back to the game yet again, and I've already started working on a variety of different decks for the upcoming Standard and heavily changed Extended.

But that's not my purpose today.

Long, long ago, back in the spring, when I was watching my interest in the game rapidly wane, I did what I often do when faced with boredom, I built a bizarre deck and played it to mediocre finishes. Now here's where the standard Magic writer would quickly go off onto another topic, but, screw it, I still think the deck is entertaining, so I'll share it with you, in hopes that *someone*, *somewhere* will also take the time to put the stuff together and have a little fun some Friday evening (or even better, at some casual multi-player scrum) before Standard rotates Invasion out.

Without further ado, the basic deck list:

Dead Poet's Society.dec

The Cheesy Combo:
4x Seize the Day
Seize the Day
Seize the DaySet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
220
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Untap target creature. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)


Your Chosen Beatsticks:
4x Serra Angel
Serra Angel
Serra AngelSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying Attacking does not cause Serra Angel to tap.

4x Beloved Chaplain
Beloved Chaplain
Beloved ChaplainSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cleric
Rarity:
U
Number:
11
Artist:
Darrell Riche
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Protection from creatures

4x Lightning Angel
Lightning Angel
Lightning AngelSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
R
Number:
108
Artist:
rk post
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying; haste (This creature may attack and TAP the turn it comes under your control.) Attacking doesn't cause Lightning Angel to tap.

4x Goblin Legionaire
4x Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue KavuSet: Planeshift
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kavu
Rarity:
U
Number:
60
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
4
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Flametongue Kavu comes into play, it deals 4 damage to target creature.

1x Goblin Trenches
Goblin Trenches
Goblin TrenchesSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
3
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
104
Artist:
Wayne England
Text:
2, Sacrifice a land: Put two 1/1 red and white Goblin Soldier creature tokens into play.


Crowd Control:
2x Spirit
Spirit
SpiritSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying
IExpbms=
3x Volcanic Hammer
Volcanic Hammer
Volcanic HammerSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Text:
Volcanic Hammer deals 3 damage to any one creature or player.

4x Fire/Ice

Finisher:
4x Reckless Charge
Reckless Charge
Reckless ChargeSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
215
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Target creature gets +3/+0 and gains haste until end of turn. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)


Lands:
4x Battlefield Forge
Battlefield Forge
Battlefield ForgeSet: Apocalypse
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
139
Artist:
Darrell Riche
Text:
TAP: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool. TAP: Add R or W to your mana pool. Battlefield Forge deals 1 damage to you.

4x Coastal Tower
Coastal Tower
Coastal TowerSet: Invasion
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
U
Number:
321
Artist:
Don Hazeltine
Text:
Coastal Tower comes into play tapped.T: Add W or U to your mana pool.

2x Adarkar Wastes
Adarkar Wastes
Adarkar WastesSet: Fifth Edition
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Gary Leach
Text:
T: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool.T: Add W or U to your mana pool. Adarkar Wastes deals 1 damage to you.

4x Shivan Reef
Shivan Reef
Shivan ReefSet: Apocalypse
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Number:
142
Artist:
Rob Alexander
Text:
TAP: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool. TAP: Add U or R to your mana pool. Shivan Reef deals 1 damage to you.

6x Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.

4x Plains
Plains
PlainsSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add W to your mana pool.


I played this shortly before Counter-Trenches became the deck of choice, and the possibilities for the design are certainly there. Stuff like Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue KavuSet: Planeshift
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kavu
Rarity:
U
Number:
60
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
4
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Flametongue Kavu comes into play, it deals 4 damage to target creature.
, Lightning Angel
Lightning Angel
Lightning AngelSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
R
Number:
108
Artist:
rk post
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying; haste (This creature may attack and TAP the turn it comes under your control.) Attacking doesn't cause Lightning Angel to tap.
, and Goblin Legionairre really need no defense, so I'll just get on to the janky stuff :-)

Seize the Day
Seize the Day
Seize the DaySet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
220
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Untap target creature. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)
, ah, good old StD...it's the namesake of the deck, and also the nastiest (and coolest might I add!) path to victory. For those who can't even recall what *set* the card is from, let alone what it does here's the break down.

Seize the Day
Seize the Day
Seize the DaySet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
220
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Untap target creature. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)

3R - Sorcery - Odyssey - Rare
Untap target creature, you get an additional combat phase, followed by an additional main phase.
Flash
Flash
FlashSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
67
Artist:
David Ho
Text:
Put a creature card from your hand into play. You may pay its mana cost reduced by up to 2. If you don't, sacrifice it.
back - 2R

Utter jank? Well, that's what most people would think, after all, Relentless Assault
Relentless Assault
Relentless AssaultSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
202
Artist:
Geofrey Darrow
Text:
Untap all creatures that attacked this turn. You get an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase this turn.
is in Seventh, and is strictly better because it untaps all your creatures, right?

Well, sort of.

StD is better in many respects because it functions as a combo-ish win condition. When you have no tapping beat sticks like Serra Angel
Serra Angel
Serra AngelSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Power:
4
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying Attacking does not cause Serra Angel to tap.
, the Lightning Angel
Lightning Angel
Lightning AngelSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
R
Number:
108
Artist:
rk post
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying; haste (This creature may attack and TAP the turn it comes under your control.) Attacking doesn't cause Lightning Angel to tap.
, and unblockable threats like the Beloved Chaplain
Beloved Chaplain
Beloved ChaplainSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cleric
Rarity:
U
Number:
11
Artist:
Darrell Riche
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Protection from creatures
combined with cheap enhancements like Relentless Assault
Relentless Assault
Relentless AssaultSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
202
Artist:
Geofrey Darrow
Text:
Untap all creatures that attacked this turn. You get an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase this turn.
, StD can get nasty in a hurry. Remember, you can only untap one creature, but those no tappers can feel free to swing again for free, and swing they do!

When the deck is working it almost feels like StD goes from utter jank to utterly broken...sick finishing plays like Relentless Assault
Relentless Assault
Relentless AssaultSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
202
Artist:
Geofrey Darrow
Text:
Untap all creatures that attacked this turn. You get an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase this turn.
my Serra
Serra
SerraSet: Vanguard
Sub Type:
Character
Rarity:
X
Number:
4
Artist:
Matthew D. Wilson
Power:
+1
Toughness:
+1
Text:
All creatures you control get +0/+2.
, swing with Serra
Serra
SerraSet: Vanguard
Sub Type:
Character
Rarity:
X
Number:
4
Artist:
Matthew D. Wilson
Power:
+1
Toughness:
+1
Text:
All creatures you control get +0/+2.
and Lightning Angel
Lightning Angel
Lightning AngelSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
R
Number:
108
Artist:
rk post
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying; haste (This creature may attack and TAP the turn it comes under your control.) Attacking doesn't cause Lightning Angel to tap.
, StD, do it again, take a combined 20 are far from impossible with this build.

That doesn't mean the deck is even tier 2 though :-) More on the realities in a bit :-)

On with the jank:

Spirit
Spirit
SpiritSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying
IExpbms= is either removal or creature enhancement. Usually the former, what with Wild Mongrel
Wild Mongrel
Wild MongrelSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Hound
Rarity:
C
Number:
283
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Discard a card from your hand: Wild Mongrel gets +1/+1 and becomes the color of your choice until end of turn.
s and Nantuko Shade
Nantuko Shade
Nantuko ShadeSet: Torment
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect Shade
Rarity:
R
Number:
74
Power:
2
Toughness:
1
Text:
B: Nantuko Shade gets +1/+1 until end of turn.
s running about everywhere. The nice thing is that in a duel with a deck where creature removal wouldn't be useful you can just slap it on one of your beasties instead and gain some life in the process, not optimum, but better than having a dead card in hand.

Beloved Chaplain
Beloved Chaplain
Beloved ChaplainSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cleric
Rarity:
U
Number:
11
Artist:
Darrell Riche
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Protection from creatures
is the red-headed stepchild of the deck. In theory he's a wonderful unblockable threat, that doubles as a great defensive critter while you set up in the early game. In reality he's usually toast the second he hits the board from any of a large, large pool of Standard cards that could care less if the little bastard has protection from creatures. This said, I never really found a suitable replacement for him either, nothing else serves his dual purpose in the deck. But his life expectancy is a big issue...

Volcanic Hammer
Volcanic Hammer
Volcanic HammerSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Edward P. Beard, Jr.
Text:
Volcanic Hammer deals 3 damage to any one creature or player.
. Shouldn't be *too* questionable, but it's primarily removal. This deck doesn't save mana so the sorcery part of the spell isn't that big of an issue. You could use Rage if you have them, but I didn't run into enough situations where Rage was better to justify running them, the curve of this deck is nasty enough without adding another mana to your early removal.

So that's the major jank portion of the deck.

So why does it work, and why doesn't it work?

Well, the major factors that I like about the deck are:

- can turn a what looks like a sure loss into a startling win as it can combo someone out quickly. Reckless Charge
Reckless Charge
Reckless ChargeSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
215
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Target creature gets +3/+0 and gains haste until end of turn. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)
plus Seize the Day
Seize the Day
Seize the DaySet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
220
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Untap target creature. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)
and no tappers equals quick swings for major damage in the late game.

- great removal base, anything that can run this much burn, plus the Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue Kavu
Flametongue KavuSet: Planeshift
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Kavu
Rarity:
U
Number:
60
Artist:
Pete Venters
Power:
4
Toughness:
2
Text:
When Flametongue Kavu comes into play, it deals 4 damage to target creature.
is doing a great job of nullifying the opponents game plan until midgame or so, at which point you should be trying to combo them out.

- unexpected call to say the least. People aren't usually packing much sideboard hate :-)

Major problems:

- horrible against fat heavy decks, especially now with Wonder
Wonder
WonderSet: Judgment
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Incarnation
Rarity:
U
Number:
54
Artist:
Rebecca Guay

Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying As long as Wonder is in your graveyard and you control an island, creatures you control have flying.
running around. If you're playing in an environment where everything doesn't fly (as I was) the concept of flyers attacking multiple times unimpeded is a decent one, now it's even worse. Initially this deck already had issues because all of it's removal is good only against small to mid-size creatures (again, the thought was stall early, win mid-game)

- A lot of combo cards. Seize the Day
Seize the Day
Seize the DaySet: Odyssey
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
220
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Untap target creature. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase. Flashback 2R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)
and Relentless Assault
Relentless Assault
Relentless AssaultSet: Classic Sixth Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
202
Artist:
Geofrey Darrow
Text:
Untap all creatures that attacked this turn. You get an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase this turn.
are great when you've got an Angel on the board, without one of the ladies though, oh boy, they look uglier and uglier.

- Painful mana base. You want to go three colors to get access to the Lightning Angel
Lightning Angel
Lightning AngelSet: Apocalypse
Cost:
4
Color:
Multicolor
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Angel
Rarity:
R
Number:
108
Artist:
rk post
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
Flying; haste (This creature may attack and TAP the turn it comes under your control.) Attacking doesn't cause Lightning Angel to tap.
, but it comes at a high price, constant early game damage. This pain factor is one of the reasons the Spirit
Spirit
SpiritSet: Divine vs Demonic
Cost:
0
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
C
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying
IExpbms=s made the cut initially, just to try and offset that damage when you need to.

=====

I played a variation of this deck twice at FNM events before Judgement was legal, and managed to pull off a .500 record with it, far from stellar, but what do you expect?

I had a great time playing this deck though, and I think it's an entertaining choice for your casual type II multi-player or perhaps, if you're crazy like me, a FNM event.

As I said, with Wonder
Wonder
WonderSet: Judgment
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Incarnation
Rarity:
U
Number:
54
Artist:
Rebecca Guay

Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
Flying As long as Wonder is in your graveyard and you control an island, creatures you control have flying.
in the current environment I think the basic idea of a huge Angel swing has gotten a lot worse though. Perhaps it could be reworked to be more competitive again, but I had my fun with the deck, and this article will likely be the last time I think about it.

Feel free to send me any entertaining stories that come about though, especially in multi-player, I'd love to hear them :-)

Anyway, that's it for this one, sometime soon I'll be writing some articles in a more serious vein though, as I try to put together a few new variants on Mono Black with our friend Oullada...err...the Grinning Demon
Grinning Demon
Grinning DemonSet: Onslaught
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Demon
Rarity:
R
Number:
153
Artist:
Mark Zug
Power:
6
Toughness:
6
Text:
At he beginning of your upkeep, you lose 2 life. Morph 2BB (You may play this face down as a 2/2 creature for 3. Turn it face up any time for its morph cost.)
and company, and also explore some of the new blue nastiness.

Until then,


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