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CardShark Content - Stanley Rutkowski III (5/21/2002)

Now that we all have gotten over the initial shock of the rotations in extended, it’s time to look at what we lost in the mix. In this article I will examine some specific cards and some specific decks. All in all, the rotation is going to force heavy play testing. Basically, every established deck was hurt by the rotation. Some decks changed in the way of their mana base, and some were completely.

Some Key Card Losses, some greater than others:

Force of Will
Force of Will
Force of WillSet: Alliances
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
You may pay 1 life and remove a blue card in your hand from the game instead of paying Force of Will's casting cost. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life. Counter target spell.
, maybe the best Counterspell
Counterspell
CounterspellSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Counters target spell as it is being cast.
ever printed

Illusions of Grandeur
Illusions of Grandeur
Illusions of GrandeurSet: Ice Age
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Quinton Hoover
Text:
Cumulative Upkeep: 2When Illusions of Grandeur comes into play, gain 20 life. When Illusions of Grandeur leaves play, lose 20 life. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life.
, the kill mechanism in Trix (aka Donate
Donate
DonateSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
31
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Target player gains control of target permanent you control.
,)

Dual Lands, hurting the mana base of almost any established deck

Swords to Plowshares
Swords to Plowshares
Swords to PlowsharesSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Jeff A. Menges
Text:
Target creature is removed from game entirely. Creature's controller gains life points equal to creature's power.
, maybe the best targeted removal spell ever printed

Stasis
Stasis
StasisSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Fay Jones
Text:
Players do not get an untap phase. Pay U during your upkeep or Stasis is destroyed; cards still do not untap until the next untap phase.
, the key to a lockdown permission deck

Gaea’s Blessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1
, the key to Oathing decks

Tithe
Tithe
TitheSet: Visions
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Jon J Muth
Text:
Search your library for a plains card. If you control fewer lands than target opponent, you may search your library for an additional plains card. Reveal those cards to all players and put them into your hand. Shuffle your library afterwards.
, the plains searcher hurting the mana smoothing of many decks

Anarchy
Anarchy
AnarchySet: Ice Age
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Phil Foglio
Text:
Destroy all white permanents.
, the key to stopping the white mage by the red mage

Abeyance
Abeyance
AbeyanceSet: Oversize Cards
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Thomas Gianni
Text:
Until end of turn, target player cannot play instants, interrupts, sorceries, or abilities requiring an activation cost.Draw a card.
, the predecessor to Orim
Orim
OrimSet: Vanguard
Sub Type:
Character
Rarity:
X
Number:
5
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Power:
+0
Toughness:
+12
Text:
Your creatures can block as though they had flying.
’s Chant

Natural Order
Natural Order
Natural OrderSet: Portal
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Alan Rabinowitz
Text:
Search your deck for a green summon creature and put that card into play. Treat it as though you just played it from your hand. Then put one of your green creatures into your discard pile. Shuffle your deck afterwards.
, the key to secret force

Arcane Denial
Arcane Denial
Arcane DenialSet: Alliances
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Richard Kane Ferguson
Text:
Counter target spell. That spell's caster may draw up to two cards at the beginning of the next turn's upkeep.Draw a card at the beginning of the next turn's upkeep.
, a splashable Counterspell
Counterspell
CounterspellSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Counters target spell as it is being cast.


Sylvan Library
Sylvan Library
Sylvan LibrarySet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Harold McNeill
Text:
You may draw two extra cards during your draw phase. If you do so, put two of the cards drawn this turn back on top of your library (in any order) or pay 4 life per card not replaced. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life.
, no more tricks and searching for the best of the top three cards

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.
, a staple of a stompy deck

Emerald Charm
Emerald Charm
Emerald CharmSet: Visions
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Greg Spalenka
Text:
Choose one Untap target permanent; or destroy target global enchantment; or target creature loses flying until end of turn.
, an instant speed disenchant for green

Tsunami
Tsunami
TsunamiSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
4
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Richard Thomas
Text:
All islands in play are destroyed.
, a pain for the blue mage

Pyroblast
Pyroblast
PyroblastSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Kaja Foglio
Text:
Counter target spell if it is blue, or destroy target permanent if it is blue. (If this spell targets a permanent, play it as an instant.)
, red’s answer to blue

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.
, alternate cost burn spell

Impulse
Impulse
ImpulseSet: Visions
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Bryan Talbot
Text:
Look at the top four cards of your library. Put one of them into your hand and the rest on the bottom of your library. Shuffle your library afterwards.
, an instant speed card drawer

Ophidian
Ophidian
OphidianSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Snake
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Cliff Nielsen
Power:
1
Toughness:
3
Text:
0: Draw a card. Ophidian deals no combat damage this turn. Use this ability only if Ophidian is attacking and unblocked and only once each turn.
, Finkle’s older brother

Merchant Scroll
Merchant Scroll
Merchant ScrollSet: Homelands
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Liz Danforth
Text:
Search your library for a blue instant or interrupt. Reveal that card to all players and put it into your hand. Reshuffle your library afterwards.
, another card drawing loss

Aura of Silence
Aura of Silence
Aura of SilenceSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
U
Artist:
D. Alexander Gregory
Text:
Artifact and enchantment spells cost target opponent an additional 2 to play.Sacrifice Aura of Silence: Destroy target artifact or enchantment.
, enchantment hate

Nevinyrral’s disk, colorless deed

Phyrexian Furnace
Phyrexian Furnace
Phyrexian FurnaceSet: Weatherlight
Cost:
1
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Artist:
George Pratt
Text:
T: Remove the bottom card of target player's graveyard from the game.1, Sacrifice Phyrexian Furnace: Remove target card in any graveyard from the game and draw a card.
, anti threshold card

Kjeldoran Outpost
Kjeldoran Outpost
Kjeldoran OutpostSet: Alliances
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Jeff A. Menges
Text:
When Kjeldoran Outpost comes into play, sacrifice a plains or bury Kjeldoran Outpost.T: Add W to your mana pool.1W, T: Put a Soldier token into play. Treat this token as a 1/1 white creature.
, staple of counter post

Gemstone Mine
Gemstone Mine
Gemstone MineSet: Weatherlight
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Brom
Text:
When Gemstone Mine comes into play, put three mining counters on it.tap, Remove a mining counter from Gemstone Mine: Add one mana of any color to your mana pool. If there are no mining counters on Gemstone Mine, bury it.
, another color smoothing land loss

Search Lands


Donate
Donate
DonateSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
31
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Target player gains control of target permanent you control.
:

Finally Donate
Donate
DonateSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
31
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Target player gains control of target permanent you control.
is gone, after multiple bannings of cards that made the engine tick, Illusions has finally been taken out of the card pool. Without half of the combo, this deck is all but gone. Granted, you could donate Delusions of Mediocrity
Delusions of Mediocrity
Delusions of MediocritySet: Urza's Legacy
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Number:
30
Artist:
Jeff Laubenstein
Text:
When Delusions of Mediocrity comes into play, gain 10 life.When Delusions of Mediocrity leaves play, lose 10 life.
bounce it donate it again and bounce it, but that combo is not a efficient as Illusions, add to the mix that Delusions has no upkeep affect, thus it does not have the punch that Illusions did. I could talk about the loss of Force of Will
Force of Will
Force of WillSet: Alliances
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
You may pay 1 life and remove a blue card in your hand from the game instead of paying Force of Will's casting cost. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life. Counter target spell.
and others, but basically the loss of Illusions totally destroys this deck.

Turbo Land:

Turbo land looses some key components in the rotation. First off you no longer have the “free” Counterspell
Counterspell
CounterspellSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Mark Poole
Text:
Counters target spell as it is being cast.
in Force of Will
Force of Will
Force of WillSet: Alliances
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
You may pay 1 life and remove a blue card in your hand from the game instead of paying Force of Will's casting cost. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life. Counter target spell.
. Second, you no longer have the versatility of the dual lands. Granted, this is a deck that can overcome this loss. Most times it simply wants to play lands (many a turn) so color considerations are less important. Third and possibly the most crucial loss is Blessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1
. The Blessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1
allowed you to use Oath to shuffle your graveyard back into you library. Once you approached “lock Down” the card was used to recycle your Time Warp
Time Warp
Time WarpSet: Starter 1999
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Target player takes another turn after this one.
s back into your graveyard. Granted you could use Dwell on the Past
Dwell on the Past
Dwell on the PastSet: Torment
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
124
Artist:
Rebecca Guay
Text:
Target player shuffles up to four target cards from his or her graveyard into his or her library.
, but the initial loss of using Oath for your creature base is gone. I think that this is a deck type that many will try to rekindle in the “new” extended, but I am not sure that the loss of Blessing
Blessing
BlessingSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Julie Baroh
Text:
W: +1/+1
can be overcome.

Grow:

The land base: Grow in its variations lost the one that very simple thing. This deck abused the land search tools in the environment with the flexible Dual Lands. To add insult to injury, you cannot use Winter Orb
Winter Orb
Winter OrbSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
A player may not untap more than one land during the untap phase of each of his or her turns.
either. This deck was a soft lock that abused the free counterspells and the returning of lands to minimize the affect of the orb. I think a new version of a threshold deck will appear, but not completely in the know form of grow.

Pox
Pox
PoxSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Each player loses 1/3 of his or her life; then chooses and discards 1/3 of his or her hand; then sacrifices 1/3 of the creatures he or she controls; and then sacrifices 1/3 of the lands he or she controls. Round each loss up.
:

Like Illusions-Donate
Donate
DonateSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
31
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Target player gains control of target permanent you control.
, this deck looses its namesake card. Pox
Pox
PoxSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Each player loses 1/3 of his or her life; then chooses and discards 1/3 of his or her hand; then sacrifices 1/3 of the creatures he or she controls; and then sacrifices 1/3 of the lands he or she controls. Round each loss up.
itself is lost in the rotation thus all but destroying the deck as we know it. I believe that a new “Pox
Pox
PoxSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Each player loses 1/3 of his or her life; then chooses and discards 1/3 of his or her hand; then sacrifices 1/3 of the creatures he or she controls; and then sacrifices 1/3 of the lands he or she controls. Round each loss up.
-less” version (like Braids) of this deck could appear as Nether Spirit
Nether Spirit
Nether SpiritSet: Mercadian Masques
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Spirit
Rarity:
R
Number:
149
Artist:
Alan Pollack
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
At the beginning of your upkeep, if Nether Spirit is the only creature card in your graveyard, you may return Nether Spirit to play.
’s nemesis is lost in the rotation (so long STP)! Control black could see a resurgence in the format with the addition of Torment
Torment
TormentSet: Stronghold
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Number:
23
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Text:
Enchanted creature gets -3/-0.
in this year’s extended season.

Junk:

Junk looses some of its versatility in the loss of the Dual Lands, Tithe
Tithe
TitheSet: Visions
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Jon J Muth
Text:
Search your library for a plains card. If you control fewer lands than target opponent, you may search your library for an additional plains card. Reveal those cards to all players and put them into your hand. Shuffle your library afterwards.
(the searcher) and Swords to Plowshares
Swords to Plowshares
Swords to PlowsharesSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
1
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Jeff A. Menges
Text:
Target creature is removed from game entirely. Creature's controller gains life points equal to creature's power.
. Of all the decks listed thus far, I believe that Junk is the least hurt by the rotation of sets. Junk is almost viable in the current standard environment (see my other articles). With the loss of STP by all decks, the creature base may keep this deck alive. Add in the fact that Sligh is still viable in the environment, and the land base allows for COP red to be in the board.

Sligh:

Sligh losses one of its best defense mechanisms in the rotation: Anarchy
Anarchy
AnarchySet: Ice Age
Cost:
4
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Phil Foglio
Text:
Destroy all white permanents.
. This sorcery let sligh have an answer to the white mage playing a COP or other enchantment. Sligh also lost Ball Lightning
Ball Lightning
Ball LightningSet: Fourth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Red
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ball Lightning
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Quinton Hoover
Power:
6
Toughness:
1
Text:
Trample Ball Lightning can attack the turn it comes into play. At the end of any turn, bury Ball Lightning.
(almost as much of a burn spell as it was a creature), 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.
(a great deal by changing lands for damage) and incinerate (an efficient way to deal with regeneration creatures). 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.
may be the easiest replaceable card in Scorching Lava
Scorching Lava
Scorching LavaSet: Invasion
Cost:
2
Color:
Red
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
164
Artist:
Mark Tedin
Text:
Kicker R (You may pay an additional R as you play this spell.)Scorching Lava deals 2 damage to target creature or player. If you paid the kicker cost, that creature can't be regenerated this turn and if it would be put into a graveyard this turn, remove it from the game instead.
or engulfing flames, but 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 not as easily replaced. With the additions of Lavamancer and Firebolt
Firebolt
FireboltSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Red
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
193
Artist:
Ron Spencer
Text:
Firebolt deals 2 damage to target creature or player. Flashback 4R (You may play this card from your graveyard for its flashback cost. Then remove it from the game.)
, this deck will most likely survive the transition into the new extended purely for its speed, redundancy and consistency. Sligh might be the first King of the Mountain
Mountain
MountainSet: Arabian Nights
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Douglas Shuler
Text:
Tap to add R to your mana pool.
(no pun intended) in the new extended.

Stasis
Stasis
StasisSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchantment
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Fay Jones
Text:
Players do not get an untap phase. Pay U during your upkeep or Stasis is destroyed; cards still do not untap until the next untap phase.
:

Like Pox
Pox
PoxSet: Fifth Edition
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Each player loses 1/3 of his or her life; then chooses and discards 1/3 of his or her hand; then sacrifices 1/3 of the creatures he or she controls; and then sacrifices 1/3 of the lands he or she controls. Round each loss up.
and Donate
Donate
DonateSet: Urza's Destiny
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
31
Artist:
Jeff Miracola
Text:
Target player gains control of target permanent you control.
, the card that made this deck tick is no more. Gone are the days of playing Island
Island
IslandSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add U to your mana pool.
-go while your opponent suffers in agony. This deck also lost Force of Will
Force of Will
Force of WillSet: Alliances
Cost:
5
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
You may pay 1 life and remove a blue card in your hand from the game instead of paying Force of Will's casting cost. Effects that prevent or redirect damage cannot be used to counter this loss of life. Counter target spell.
, but the lock down mechanism is no more, thus destroying the deck.

Threshold Geddon:

Loss of 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 baubble doesn’t hurt too much, but the loss of the dual lands hurts most of all. This deck like Junk and Sligh could become the dominate forces in the new extended.

All in all, I think that the new extended will be a healthy environment, but it’s sad too see so many great cards leave in one huge wave.


As always, questions and comments are appreciated.

Thanks for reading,


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