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CardShark Content - Stanley Rutkowski III (7/23/2002)

Questions to self: Should I play the number one deck in block? What kind of hate is there for it? What hate should I play against it?

It seems like all the “buzz” in OBC is about Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation
Quiet SpeculationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
John Avon

Text:
Search target player's Library for up to three cards with flashback and put them into that players graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
. I agree that the card itself looks quite amazing at first glance. In a large format, such as Extended or Type II, this card can meet its potential. Can it achieve its potential in a narrow format such as OBC? Let’s start by looking at a “typical” Quiet Roar build.

4 x Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation
Quiet SpeculationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
John Avon

Text:
Search target player's Library for up to three cards with flashback and put them into that players graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.

4 x Roar of the Worm
4 x 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.

4 x Basking Rootwalla
Basking Rootwalla
Basking RootwallaSet: Torment
Cost:
1
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Lizard
Rarity:
C
Number:
121
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
1G: Basking Rootwalla gets +2/+2 until end of turn. Play this ability only once each turn. Madness 0

4 x Circular Logic
Circular Logic
Circular LogicSet: Torment
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
33
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Text:
Counter target spell unless its controller pays 1 for each card in your graveyard. Madness U

4 x Deep Analysis
Deep Analysis
Deep AnalysisSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
36
Text:
Target player draws two cards. Flashback - 1U, Pay 3 life.

1 x Moments Peace
4 x Aether Burst
Aether Burst
Aether BurstSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Return up to X target creatures to their owners' hands, where X is one plus the number of Aether Burst cards in all graveyards as you play Aether Burst.

2 x Arrogant Worm
3 x 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.

3 x Catalyst Stone
Catalyst Stone
Catalyst StoneSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
297
Artist:
Tony Szczudlo
Text:
Flashback costs you pay cost up to 2 less. Flashback costs your opponents pay cost 2 more.

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

12 x Forest
Forest
ForestSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add G to your mana pool.



After looking at countless tournament reports, there are three “typical” variations of the Quiet Roar deck type. First is the Stone (Catalyst Stone
Catalyst Stone
Catalyst StoneSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
297
Artist:
Tony Szczudlo
Text:
Flashback costs you pay cost up to 2 less. Flashback costs your opponents pay cost 2 more.
) version. This is setup mostly for the mirror-matchup. The second non-stone version has explosive cards and more ways to abuse the Speculation. Unfortunately, it does not have many ways (other than Circular Logic
Circular Logic
Circular LogicSet: Torment
Cost:
3
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
33
Artist:
Anthony S. Waters
Text:
Counter target spell unless its controller pays 1 for each card in your graveyard. Madness U
) to deal with the Catalyst Stone
Catalyst Stone
Catalyst StoneSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
R
Number:
297
Artist:
Tony Szczudlo
Text:
Flashback costs you pay cost up to 2 less. Flashback costs your opponents pay cost 2 more.
s in the mirror. The third is the “threshold” version that uses cards like Careful Study
Careful Study
Careful StudySet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
70
Artist:
Scott M. Fischer
Text:
Draw two cards, then discard two cards from your hand.
and Wearbear to help.

Now let us look at some of the possibilities in “Hate” cards that can cause a Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation
Quiet SpeculationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
John Avon

Text:
Search target player's Library for up to three cards with flashback and put them into that players graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
deck grief.

Morning Tide
1W
Sorcery
Remove
Remove
RemoveSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
DiTerlizzi
Text:
Play Remove only after you're attacked, before you declare blockers.Return any one attacking creature to its owner's hand.
all cards in all graveyards from the game.

This card not only stops your cards from being “flashed back”, it also takes away the 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.
-given flying ability. At first, this card seems only to help in the Quiet Roar matchup. If the deck is designed properly, it hurts any deck that relies on threshold, and can aid in protecting your deck from having Haunting Echoes
Haunting Echoes
Haunting EchoesSet: Odyssey
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
142
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Text:
Remove all cards in target player's graveyard other than basic land cards from the game. Search that player's library for all cards with the same name as cards removed this way, and remove them from the game. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
hurt you. This card has versatility in many matchups, and is a must to consider.

Tombfire
Tombfire
TombfireSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
165
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Text:
Target player removes all cards with flashback in his or her graveyard from the game.

B
Sorcery
Target player removes all cards with flashback in his or her graveyard from the game,


This card eliminates the cards from the speculation. Granted, it leaves the 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 graveyard, but it still hinders the Quiet Roar player by essentially making the Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation
Quiet SpeculationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
John Avon

Text:
Search target player's Library for up to three cards with flashback and put them into that players graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
read, “remove up to three cards with flashback from the game.” To play around the Tombfire
Tombfire
TombfireSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
165
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Text:
Target player removes all cards with flashback in his or her graveyard from the game.
, you need to play the Speculation and flash one of the cards back in the same turn. This hate card really slows down the Quiet Roar decks.

Decompose
Decompose
DecomposeSet: Odyssey
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
128
Artist:
Tony Szczudlo
Text:
Remove up to three target cards in a single graveyard from the game.

1B
Sorcery
Remove
Remove
RemoveSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
DiTerlizzi
Text:
Play Remove only after you're attacked, before you declare blockers.Return any one attacking creature to its owner's hand.
up to three target cards in a single graveyard from the game.

This card can remove your 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.
from the game, but does not necessarily rid you of all your flashback spells in one shot. This card does have a wider range of usage (how about Glory
Glory
GlorySet: Judgment
Cost:
5
Color:
White
Sub Type:
Incarnation
Rarity:
R
Number:
11
Artist:
Donato Giancola
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Flying 2W: Creatures you control gain protection from the color of your choice until end of turn. Play this ability only if Glory is in your graveyard.
?) so it may see more play than Tombfire
Tombfire
TombfireSet: Odyssey
Cost:
1
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
165
Artist:
Arnie Swekel
Text:
Target player removes all cards with flashback in his or her graveyard from the game.
.

Krosan Reclamation
Krosan Reclamation
Krosan ReclamationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Green
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
122
Artist:
Gary Ruddell

Text:
Target player shuffles up to two target cards from his or her graveyard into his or her library. Flashback 1G.

1G
Instant
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 1G. ; Target player shuffles up to two target cards from his or her graveyard into his or her library.

Effectively, this card puts two of the cards you got with the speculation back into your library, making the speculation a close 1 for 1 trade. If you count the flashback ability of the reclamation, you could be at a -1 card disadvantage after casting the speculation (grab that 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.
too)!

AEther Burst
1U
Instant
Return up to X target creatures to their owners' hands, where X is one plus the number of AEther Burst cards in all graveyards as you play ~this~.

This card should read “destroy target Worm token.” You need to be able to deal with bounce. If you choose Spellbane Centaur
Spellbane Centaur
Spellbane CentaurSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Centaur
Rarity:
R
Number:
271
Artist:
Rick Farrell
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
3/2 Card Text: Creatures you control can't be the targets of blue spells or abilities from blue sources.
, you only get protection from blue spells, if you play Safekeeper, you are at a disadvantage due to your lower than average land count in the deck.

Faceless Butcher
Faceless Butcher
Faceless ButcherSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Faceless Butcher comes into play, remove target creature other than Faceless Butcher from the game. When Faceless Butcher leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.

2BB
Summon Nightmare
Nightmare
NightmareSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Melissa A. Benson
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying Nightmare's power and toughness both equal the number of swamps its controller has in play.
Horror
When ~this~ comes into play, remove target creature other than ~this~ from the game. ; When ~this~ leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
Power 2, Toughness 3

Slithery Stalker
Slithery Stalker
Slithery StalkerSet: Torment
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare Horror
Rarity:
U
Number:
84
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Swampwalk. When Slithery Stalker comes into play, remove target green or white creature an opponent controls from the game. When Slithery Stalker leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.

1BB
Summon Nightmare
Nightmare
NightmareSet: Revised Edition
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare
Rarity:
R
Artist:
Melissa A. Benson
Power:
*
Toughness:
*
Text:
Flying Nightmare's power and toughness both equal the number of swamps its controller has in play.
Horror
Swamp
Swamp
SwampSet: Oversize Cards
Color:
Land
Type:
Land
Rarity:
X
Artist:
Tony Roberts
Text:
T: Add B to your mana pool.
walk. ; When ~this~ comes into play, remove target green or white creature an opponent controls from the game. ; When ~this~ leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
Power 1, Toughness 1

Faceless Butcher
Faceless Butcher
Faceless ButcherSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Faceless Butcher comes into play, remove target creature other than Faceless Butcher from the game. When Faceless Butcher leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
, could read “remove target worm token from the game.” In this case, the addition of Spellbane Centaur
Spellbane Centaur
Spellbane CentaurSet: Odyssey
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Centaur
Rarity:
R
Number:
271
Artist:
Rick Farrell
Power:
3
Toughness:
2
Text:
3/2 Card Text: Creatures you control can't be the targets of blue spells or abilities from blue sources.
won’t help you with protection, so the Safekeeper looks like a better option, but the land loss could become a disadvantage. Slithery Stalker
Slithery Stalker
Slithery StalkerSet: Torment
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare Horror
Rarity:
U
Number:
84
Power:
1
Toughness:
1
Text:
Swampwalk. When Slithery Stalker comes into play, remove target green or white creature an opponent controls from the game. When Slithery Stalker leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
, just like Faceless Butcher
Faceless Butcher
Faceless ButcherSet: Torment
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Nightmare Horror
Rarity:
C
Number:
60
Power:
2
Toughness:
3
Text:
When Faceless Butcher comes into play, remove target creature other than Faceless Butcher from the game. When Faceless Butcher leaves play, return the removed card to play under its owner's control.
, destroys a worm token, Rootwalla
Rootwalla
RootwallaSet: Tempest
Cost:
3
Color:
Green
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Lizard
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Roger Raupp
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
1G: Rootwalla gets +2/+2 until end of turn. Use this ability only once each turn.
, or Arrogant Worm.

Upheaval
Upheaval
UpheavalSet: Odyssey
Cost:
6
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
113
Artist:
Kev Walker
Text:
Return all permanents to their owners' hands.

4UU
Sorcery
Return all permanents to their owners' hands.

If this resolves, you are in big trouble. Safekeeper does not protect you in this manner and the tokens generated are lost. This is the rest button in the block to fear, so make sure that if you get into a long game with a U/x deck, that you account for this possibility.

Envelop
Envelop
EnvelopSet: Judgment
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
39
Artist:
Don Hazeltine

Text:
Counter target sorcery spell.

U
Instant
Counter target sorcery spell.

This counterspell takes care of the speculation itself, the worm token or the analysis. With one blue open, your opponent can thwart your strategy.

Grip of Amnesia
Grip of Amnesia
Grip of AmnesiaSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
C
Number:
41
Artist:
Bradley Williams

Text:
Counter Target spell unless its controller removes his or her graveyard from the game. Draw a card

1U
Instant
Counter target spell unless its controller removes his or her graveyard from the game. Draw a card.

Similar to the Fact or Fiction
Fact or Fiction
Fact or FictionSet: Invasion
Cost:
4
Color:
Blue
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
57
Artist:
Terese Nielsen
Text:
Reveal the top five cards of your library. An opponent separates those cards into two face-up piles. Put one pile into your hand and the other into your graveyard.
, this card forces a player to make a decision, sometimes the player will make the wrong decision. Is the spell being cast worth the removal of the graveyard? If 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.
or Roar of the Worm are in the graveyard, this becomes a “hard” 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 most instances. At worst, it is a cantrip to search for another answer.

In a small card pool like OBC, hate cards can be more effetely chosen. Slots can dedicated to a deck type because of the somewhat limited variety of deck choices. Some of the graveyard hate in the block affects the Quiet Roar deck as well as other established deck types.

In the area of cost, most Quiet Roar decks contain very few “Chase Rares”. This makes it one of the least expensive decks in the format. With that said, the opportunity of “mirror” type matchups increase.

So back to my initial question, is Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation
Quiet SpeculationSet: Judgment
Cost:
2
Color:
Blue
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
John Avon

Text:
Search target player's Library for up to three cards with flashback and put them into that players graveyard. Then that player shuffles his or her library.
worth the risk? To answer the questions you have to look at the following criteria.

Which type of build are you going to Focus on?

Can you handle the mirror matchup?

Can you deal with all of the “hate” cards?

I believe that the answer is dependant on the individual playing the deck. Play skill and knowledge is very important if the mirror matchup is very likely. This article demonstrates that this is not a simple yes or no. A lot of variables that have to be taken into account before you copy that U/G deck on the net. Good luck in making your decision.

As always, questions and comments are appreciated.

Thanks for Reading,


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