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Setting up Extended for 2010

December 22, 2009

Hello everybody. The year of 2009 is coming to an end which means that it’s soon season for Extended again. So today I was thinking about laying up a showcase of decks which will tell us where we are in Extended coming into next year. I’m going to talk about some of the frontrunners of the format in no particular order:

Zoo

 Zoo comes in many different shapes and forms these days. Some of them battles with Goblin Guide, some with Molten Rain, you can go the Punishing Fire+Grove of the Burnwillows route and more. I’m right now particular fond of this version with Bant Charm:

What all versions have in common is that they are fast and consistent at what they do. They are also relatively easy to play which made this archetype very popular at the PTQ scene past season and you shouldn’t except any difference next year either. This is a matchup you need to be prepared to play against to prevail.

Thopter Sword Blue

This archetype is also quite broad as we speak, but this seems to be the route to take if you want to play a blue control deck next year. Like Psychatog decks of past years, this deck operates as a control decks until you can “assemble” your combo of Thopter Foundry and Sword of the Meek at which point you basically win right there. Here is a solid list as reference:

Thopter Sword Blue by Luis Scott Vargas
Mainboard:

1 Academy Ruins
1 Ancient Den
3 Arid Mesa
1 Ghost Quarter
2 Hallowed Fountain
3 Island
3 Misty Rainforest
1 Mystic Gate
1 Plains
1 Seat of the Synod
3 Snow-Covered Island
1 Snow-Covered Plains
1 Steam Vents
1 Tolaria West
2 Trinket Mage
1 Aether Spellbomb
1 Chalice of the Void
3 Chrome Mox
3 Cryptic Command
1 Day of Judgment
3 Engineered Explosives
2 Gifts Ungiven
2 Mana Leak
1 Muddle the Mixture
3 Path to Exile
3 Spell Snare
1 Sword of the Meek
2 Tezzeret the Seeker
4 Thirst for Knowledge
2 Thopter Foundry
1 Tormod’s Crypt
1 Vedalken Shackles
1 Wrath of God

Sideboard:

3 Baneslayer Angel
1 Crucible of Worlds
2 Glen Elendra Archmage
3 Meddling Mage
2 Negate
1 Path to Exile
1 Pithing Needle
1 Relic of Progenitus
1 Tormod’s Crypt

Dredge

After taking an off-year last season, Dredge is back and swinging in Extended. Thanks to some sweet cards in Zendikar this archetype has once again picked up speed. The explosivness and raw power of this deck is hard to match. Off course the deck is very venerable to graveyard hate, but you know that drill. Still, be aware of this deck. If you don’t pack those Tormod’s Crypts or Ravenous Traps Dredge will get you. A list of reference:

Dredge by Akimasa Yamamoto

Mainboard:

2 Breeding Pool
2 Island
4 Misty Rainforest
4 Scalding Tarn
1 Steam Vents
3 Verdant Catacombs
3 Watery Grave
3 Bloodghast
4 Drowned Rusalka
1 Flame-Kin Zealot
4 Golgari Grave-Troll
4 Hedron Crab
1 Iona, Shield of Emeria
4 Narcomoeba
1 Sphinx of Lost Truths
4 Stinkweed Imp
4 Bridge from Below
3 Dread Return
4 Glimpse the Unthinkable
3 Ideas Unbound
1 Life from the Loam

Sideboard:

1 Ancient Grudge
1 Darkblast
2 Echoing Truth
1 Ghost Quarter
4 Leyline of the Void
2 Maelstrom Pulse
4 Thoughtseize

Scapeshift

This is one of the new players in the format. If you haven’t heard of the combo, you basically play Scapeshift and win. You win by getting Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle and 6 Mountains to deal 18 damage to your opponent. Off course, if you can sacrifice 8 lands instead it’s even better for you. The deck is very resilient and loves to play against Zoo. Off course cards such as Cranial Extraction is quite devastating against you but you can as many people have done have a couple of Meloku is the board as an alternative win condition. This deck reminds me very much about last years Storm deck actually. You have Scapeshift instead of Mind’s Desire and Tribe-Elders and stuff instead of the rituals. The standard blue cards as Remand and Peer Through Depth is still there… This is a deck to look out for sure.

The rest

Then we have a couple of decks that is not as prevalent but worth of mentioning. All-in Red (AIR), Dark Depths Combo and Hypergenesis. All three of these decks do have a lot of raw power which makes them pretty scary to play against but they do all have the flaw that they can be pretty easily counter acted. As heard in the name, if you do have an answer to the all-in, AIR folds pretty quickly. Ghost Quarter, Pithing Needle or just a Path to Exile stops Dark Depths (though that deck can play around a lot of the hate) and Hypergenesis can be stopped by a lot and does have a hard time at dealing with the hate.

Still, threats > answers so don’t rule these decks out right off the bat. Because that is when these decks prevails, when people simply is not expecting them or taking them seriously.

This was a short summary of Extended as it is today. I hope you enjoyed it and it looks like we will have a fun season of playing Extended this year.

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