Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Pauper Perspetive: Bridging to Extended

One of the interesting things happening recently in our Casual Game, is the developing interest in older cards. Both the developing highlander, and blossoming 5-Color decks have spurred an interest in Vintage Cards. While there are those flinging a lot of high dollars cards, and power pieces, it really isn't necessary to spend large dollars on single cards to increase the scope and power of your collection. Many of the best cards are commons, and to learn about commons and combinations of theme you have only to turn to Pauper, or Peasant Magic.

For those of you who don't know Pauper is an alternative deck construction limit. You must build decks of at least 60 cards and follow the normal 4 copy. In addition you deck must be constructed of commons, but allows for 5 uncommons. That's right, no rares! These people get very creative, and work out the power of often over looked cards.

I have talked several times about introducing the extended card concepts to our group with use of the Pauper restrictions, so everyone could compete on a fairly level ground. Give people a chance to get their feet wet with the deck concepts, without the need to invest heavily in expensive rare basis which exist for many of the popular extended decks.

In the hopes that this may catch on, and to support the communities interest in older cards, I am linking to several Pauper inspired resources for the Extended legal sets of Ravnica block, Kamigawa block, and Mirrodin block. These articles will give you and idea about many of the best commons from each block.

The MVP common of the Ravnica block would be Guardian of the Guildpact. It's protection from mono-colored makes it a house blocker, virtually un-blockable attacker, and extremely resistant to removal. When combined with the even older Armadillo Cloak, it simply wins games.

Mirodin brought us a number of cards of notice. The artifact lands are worth picking up along with the Land Affinity Golems (Dross, Oxidda, Razor, Spire, and Tangle). The Darksteel indestructible items like the Ingot, and Pendant are also heavy contenders which will see play for years in the casual world. Likewise the Arcbound creatures are all worth considering in any artifact creature heavy build. If I had to pick one common from this block to pick up, it would be Trinket Mage. It's repeatable comes into play fetch ability makes your deck that much smaller, while bringing some of the best artifacts available out.

Kamigawa block has a similar problem in choosing an MVP, but for the opposite reason. Instead of there being a wealth of highly playable commons like Mirodin, there are no huge stand outs in this block. The three leading contenders from the block are Kodama's Reach, Sakura-Tribe Elder, and Ninja of the Deep Hours. Each is playable, but easily replaceable by other cards having similar functions.

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