Latest Update
20 November, 2006

Timespiral Standard - Searching for Rogue!


By Anthony Skinner

October Champs has been and gone, usually this means that the dust has settled and the break out decks for the new season have been discovered. This season not so, take a look at the winning decks from US and Japan Championships and you find a different winning deck at each one! You can see the official coverage here

Maybe it should not be that surprising, between Coldsnap and the extra Timeshifted cards, Standard now has the largest pool of cards that I can remember, so it is bound to take longer for things to settle down. What this does mean for anyone playing in a Standard Constructed event is that you literally need to be prepared for anything!

I really like this from a design point of view, when I think of how many deck ideas were thrown away 'cos it couldn't beat Affinity or just loses to U/G Madness, this means good times! However, from a players point of view it is frustrating, how can I prepare and test against a completely random field of opponents!

The Search for Rogue


What I am going to do for the rest of this article is look at eight of the top 8 decks from Japan. The Japanese always find the tech no one else sees and looking through their lists is like getting your hands on gold! Ignoring the most popular archtypes,what weird and wonderful gems can I find?

Deck 1 - Snow White

Yuuji Nakane
2006 Aichi Standard Champs, 2nd place
Main Deck
60 cards
4  Flagstones of Trokair
4  Scrying Sheets
15  Snow-Covered Plains

23 land

4  Martyr of Sands
2  Akroma, Angel of Wrath
2  Adarkar Valkyrie
2  Phyrexian Ironfoot

10 creatures
4  Wrath of God
4  Faith's Fetters
4  Sacred Mesa
2  Proclamation of Rebirth
2  Ivory Mask
4  Gelid Shackles
4  Coldsteel Heart
3  Gauntlet of Power

27 other spells
2  Evangelize
2  Moratorium Stone
4  Disrupting Scepter
3  Sacred Ground
3  Return to Dust
1  Ivory Mask

15 sideboard cards

This second place deck is a modern Mono White Control (MWC). This has been a successful archetype in the past and Zvi Mowshowitz's build in the Mirrodin era qualified me for my first Nationals. For that reason alone I am a great fan of this style of deck.

I have seen this playing in the MTGO premier events and its weakness is its inability to draw enough land. Without any card draw to dig through your deck you are relying heavily on the top of it. The MWC of old had Eternal Dragon and to a lesser extent cyclers like Renewed Faith to find the vital first four or five land drops.

I will be making this deck up and trying to make some improvements. It struggles against decks sporting the Urzatron, as control mirrors are usually decided by mana advantage. My gut feeling is that this needs either an Urzatron / Weathered Wayfarer package or a second colour. The only reason in my opinion to stay with just white is the Gauntlet of Power / Sacred Messa "combo", which is very powerful if it comes online.

I am going to try splashing blue for Hallowed Fountain and Azorious Signet and use the mana to bring in Remand and Compulsive Research. This should hopefully get rid of the initial mana hiccup without ruining the games long term plan. The other card I would like to include is Stormherd , especially if I go for the Urzatron plan.

Deck 2 - Mono Green Stompy

Yuuichi Miyazaki
2006 Aichi Standard Champs, 3rd place
Main Deck
60 cards
1  Pendelhaven
20  Forest

21 land

4  Birds of Paradise
4  Llanowar Elves
4  Silhana Ledgewalker
4  Scryb Ranger
4  Yavimaya Dryad
4  Spectral Force

24 creatures
4  Call of the Herd
4  Blanchwood Armor
4  Moldervine Cloak
3  Stonewood Invocation

15 other spells
4  Spike Feeder
3  Giant Solifuge
3  Serrated Arrows
3  Krosan Grip
2  Greater Good

15 sideboard cards

This is a very similar deck to the one Graham Theobalds posted on this site just before Timespiral came out. The deck uses cheap threats plus efficient creature enchantments to win quickly. Both Silhana Ledgewalker and Scryb Ranger make it difficult on the Blue mage to do anything about the large men beating them down! Stonewood Invocation on an attacking Spectral Force does a tasty 13 damage!

Deck 3 - Dragon Combo

Kousei Konno
2006 Akita Standard Champs, 3rd place
Main Deck
60 cards
4  Steam Vents
4  Shivan Reef
9  Island
3  Mountain

20 land

2  Hunted Dragon
4  Bogardan Hellkite
2  Grozoth

8 creatures
4  Dragonstorm
4  Sleight of Hand
4  Seething Song
4  Remand
4  Telling Time
4  Rite of Flame
4  Lotus Bloom
4  Gigadrowse

32 other spells
4  Ignorant Bliss
3  Shadow of Doubt
1  Govern the Guildless
2  Ophidian Eye
1  Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind
4  Truth or Tale

15 sideboard cards

This is the full combo version of Dragonstorm and is the deck I had been working on leading up to Champs, this deck is card for card identical to the version I had made up with the exception that the Gigadrowses are in the main and the Truth or Tales are in the board. I imagine that you are aware of this deck but as it is a little ego boost for the author, I thought I would include it anyway!! I must admit I have no idea what the Ophidian Eyes in the sideboard are for!

Deck 4 - WBR Burn

Ryou Ihara
2006 Nagano Standard Champs, 7th place
Main Deck
60 cards
3  Mountain
4  Swamp
2  Battlefield Forge
2  Sulfurous Springs
3  Sacred Foundry
3  Godless Shrine
4  Blood Crypt
2  Gemstone Mine

23 land

3  Shadow Guildmage
3  Magus of the Scroll
4  Dark Confidant
4  Pit Keeper
4  Rakdos Guildmage
3  Lyzolda, the Blood Witch
4  Giant Solifuge

25 creatures
3  Seal of Fire
3  Demonfire
4  Lightning Helix
2  Char

12 other spells
4  Cremate
3  Shadow of Doubt
4  Sudden Spoiling
4  Hide // Seek

15 sideboard cards

A Burn deck with a difference, Pit Keeper, Lyzolda and Shadow Guildmage round out an innovative deck.

Deck 5 - GOBLINS! (No we are not still in Onslaught Block!)

Yuuki Wada
2006 Shimane Standard Champs, 3rd place
Main Deck
60 cards
19  Snow-Covered Mountain
2  Mouth of Ronom

21 land

4  Frenzied Goblin
4  Boros Recruit
4  Goblin Furrier
4  Goblin Raider
4  Goblin King
2  Ib Halfheart, Goblin Tactician

22 creatures
3  Shock
4  Seal of Fire
4  Volcanic Hammer
3  Char
3  Blood Moon

17 other spells
4  Mogg Sentry
3  Giant Solifuge
3  Skred
1  Blood Moon
4  Serrated Arrows

15 sideboard cards

Goblins are back! The plan is simple and even some Boros have been recruited (never thought I would see the day!) The idea is to drop a ton of little red men, wreck your opponent's mana with Blood Moon and then mountain walk FTW! It's just crazy enough to work and you know this deck came 3rd, now if only Piledriver was a Timeshifted card!

DECK 6 - Reanimate This!

Yoshiyuki Yamane
2006 Tokyo Standard Champs Winner
Main Deck
60 cards
1  Island
3  Swamp
2  Steam Vents
1  Blood Crypt
1  Watery Grave
3  Shivan Reef
4  Sulfurous Springs
1  Underground River
4  Dimir Aqueduct
2  Gemstone Caverns

22 land

4  Bogardan Hellkite
4  Akroma, Angel of Wrath
2  Angel of Despair
4  Thought Courier

14 creatures
4  Lightning Axe
4  Compulsive Research
4  Zombify
4  Dread Return
1  Vigor Mortis
4  Remand
3  Lotus Bloom

24 other spells
1  Lotus Bloom
2  Cancel
4  Dragonstorm
4  Seething Song
3  Rite of Flame
1  Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind

15 sideboard cards

Now this is what we are looking for! Winning tech from the Japanese Masters! A rogue Reanimator starts game one and then Dragonstorm comes in from the board! If I get time before the next Kent Monthly standard, I will be giving this list some strong consideration.

Deck 7 - Orzhov Weenie

O Ryong-Sok
2006 Tottori Standard Champs, 2nd place
Main Deck
60 cards
1  Flagstones of Trokair
4  Caves of Koilos
4  Godless Shrine
2  Plains
11  Swamp

22 land

4  Plagued Rusalka
4  Dark Confidant
4  Stromgald Crusader
4  Dauthi Slayer
4  Nether Traitor
2  Orzhov Pontiff

22 creatures
4  Last Gasp
4  Castigate
4  Mortify
4  Bad Moon

16 other spells
4  Stupor
4  Condemn
2  Disenchant
1  Orzhov Pontiff
2  Seize the Soul
2  Tormod's Crypt

15 sideboard cards

I have been looking for Bad Moon to make a splash in Type 2 and here it is, powering this collection of Orzhov weenies into second place.


I have heard some requests on the forum for a list for the Greater Gargadon deck and here is a top 8 version.

Seiji Nowaki
2006 Gifu Standard Champs, 8th place
Main Deck
61 cards
5  Plains
5  Mountain
4  Battlefield Forge
2  Gemstone Mine
4  Sacred Foundry
3  Flagstones of Trokair
1  Calciform Pools

24 land

3  Firemane Angel
4  Greater Gargadon

7 creatures
3  Word of Seizing
3  Faith's Fetters
4  Condemn
3  Peace of Mind
3  Claws of Gix
2  Pyroclasm
4  Wrath of God
4  Lightning Helix
4  Restore Balance

30 other spells
3  Paladin en-Vec
4  Soltari Priest
4  Knight of the Holy Nimbus
4  Savannah Lions

15 sideboard cards

I must admit to not entirely understanding what all the spells are designed to do, for example, Word of Seizing, why is that here? The aim of the deck is to set up a fundamental turn with Restore Balance, where you discard everything and sacrifice the rest. The result is you have a Greater Gargadon and they have nothing! However, a timely Remand would be sure to ruin that plan! This deck is certainly different enough though and looks like good fun to play.

That's all for now from the Japanese Rogue deck factory, please let me know what you think of these decks on the forum.



I am aiming to write a constructed article every weekend for the next few weeks, I would be pleased if you could vote on the forum for what you would like to see, the choices are :-

1) Artificing Mishra - A look at the ways to break the Legend and win big!

2) MBC - Mono Black Control in Type 2 - How I've missed Odyssey Block!

3) Firemane Uncovered - A look at the many faces of Firemane Control

3) I Can't Believe it's Thallid - The Meanest Plants in Town!


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