Extort, I'm just saying..

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Hey guys, I've been wondering ever since the new mechanics from Gatecrash were to hit the game if others agreed with me that Extort could be a new super power. It  has creautres in the mana curve, the colours have plenty of ways to kill other annoying critters and since the ability is activated during casting, it does'nt matter if the spell gets countered or not.

The Extort cards I'm most excited about are Crypt Ghast and Blind Obedience, both of which I reckon will turn a few heads in the new season, then again, who am I to say? I'd love to have some input wether you agree or not, cheers!

The mechanic won't make a big standard splash yet because the game is just Battlecruiser magic. You either play hyper aggro, thragtusk, or go over the top even bigger than thragtusk. There is no "hey that's a cool interaction" in standard magic anymore. If a single card doesn't do it all by itself and it's abilities are free to activate, it doesn't see play.

I sincerely hope this changes.


extort wont make much of an appearance outside multiplayer imo. there's a few cards that are decent because of their other abilities and extort becomes the cherry on top, but they are too few and dont belong in the same deck for an actual extort deck to be anything but a bad casual deck - in 1v1 anyway.

1. they costed extort too high to be viable: the commons have too bad stats/abilities to be playable, the uncommons the same to be competitive. the rares are decent cuz of their other abilities. Extort only gives an extra option that you have to pay for, yet they costed the ability pretty much like it was an ETB effect.
2. they put it on cards where most cost too much . Ideally you want a bunch of 1 or 2 cost cards - if you play mostly cards costing 4 or more the game would need to be disgustingly long for you to have mana to spare
3 the cards that have the mechanic are almost all creatures: this is the final deathblow. Standard is overflowing with sweeps - most of them are expensive so fast aggro deck can deal but playing a slow deck with creatures is suicide atm

so the parasite could be a halfdecent card in fast agro, blind obedience could be the gayest wincon ever and sideboard option vs haste, crypt might do for monoB as ramp and treasury thrull might make an appareance here and there.

none of these cards will appear in the same deck though, and when they are played extort will barely be impacting the game. 

@JNP: hasnt that always been the case? what kind of interaction are you thinking of? also blink is still around..
Magic hasn't always been this way with insane value creatures...aherm thragtusk...that make spells almost irrelevant. All magic is turn dude sideways now. Spells are useless. Interactions between cards (creature-creature, spell-spell, spell-creature) used to be commonplace and needed to win. Now, just race to 5 and start slapping ValuePig down and durdle for a few turns until you win.

It's garbage that every deck is just hyper aggro or midrange. Creature are just wayyyyy up on the power creep currently, and as a control player, I am not that happy about it. But I digress


well now thats just not true. Creatures have finally reached the power they need to be at to contend with control. As a controlplayer you should be happy that your days of too easy wins vs anything that wasnt either every card highvalue cmc 1-2 or other control decks are over. midrange has finally reached a level of power and resilience where they are en par with cheap control spells. 

i browsed a few tournament results and the top tens have plenty of control players, even if control didnt acutually win any of 3 the tournaments. this in a standard that has a ridiculous card like cavern of souls gives a hint of how overpowered control normally is and will be again once cavern rotates out - especially now that blind obedience has entered the mix to curtail hasted.
Gatecrash has a definite slant in favor of control, lacking powerful haste or resilience - bloodrush will be tricky for control but its an invitation for card disadvantage.

as for neat interactions it seems human reanimator is doing well so all in all i think your description of standard is way off.
Bantrol and Jund aggro still are the king. Everyone can agree that the ValuePig is ridiculous. And CoS should have NEVER been printed. Getting rid of selective draw was good though.

Really my only complaint as a control player is thraggy. There is just no way to interact without 2 for 1'ing yourself unless you have a 3/x first strike on deck. Rakdos keyrune is nice, but having the 2 mana up can be a challenge.

Countermagic is at an all time low, either too specific or too expensive. The days of bolt and leak are over I suppose, and it def makes things challenging. We can deal with that. It's really just the pig that I want gone.


tbh i think that kind of semiguaranteed cardadvantage is a neccesary payoff for playing 5 cmc threats without haste in a game where control cards are so cheap and dont care about the size of your threats. All you need to do vs tusk is have draw in your deck and getting out 50/50 or better if the exchange should be common enough.

CoS is to counterspell heavy decks what sweeps are to creature heavy decks, or what playershroud is to burn/mill. they punish you for relying too much on a certain mechanic/cardtype (or offsets the advantage you get for doing so) -  a card like this that couldnt itself be countered should have been made the moment standard became an important format as its an obviously needed balance. I hope similar cards will be hitting standard occasionally to keep control from making midagro+ unplayable.

And i hope to see more creatures with great LTB effects like the pig, to make midagro more competitive (although in case of tusk, control benefits greatly from the lifegain as well)
the great thing about LTB is that to beat it ina way where you come out of ahead (not counting draw) you need a combat presence - so far magic has been rewarding players for playing without creatures for most of the game making control too easy.
And unlike ETB you can make LTB quite powerful because (without blink) you wont be getting the benefit of both the card and the LTB effect at the same time. So vs a combat deck the LTB creature will not be too powerful - id have no problem with a vanilla creature with P/T = cmc that leaves a equally powerful token behind fx
You could build around it in casual but in standard there is just not the repeatable casting cards to make it work. I think you have to run green for rancor, that causes all sorts of problems and a much more expensive land base. You are at the very least then green/black and probably want white as well for more extort.

This is about the best I could do on short notice and I just do not think the result is worth the cost of assembly.

4 thrull parasite
4 basilica screecher
4 Syndic of Tithes
4 treasury thrull
2 Glissa, the Traitor
2 reassembling skeleton

4 rancor
3 Executioner's Capsule
3 coalition relic
1 chromatic lantern
1 spirit loop
1 flickering ward
1 blind obedience
1 recurring nightmare
1 expedition map

4 gemstone mine
4 godless shrine
4 overgrown tomb
4 temple garden
2 verdant catacombs
2 Orzhov Basilica
2 Selesnya Sanctuary
2 Golgari Rot Farm

You could probably go just straight green black if you are willing to lose the white, that would let you get your urborg with crop rotation but honestly the treasury thrull is the only one to really peak my interest and that is a 6 cmc monster to cast every bit as hard as a titan.

I think crypt ghast belongs in a deck that is all swamp and includes no other extorts. Something like this maybe? A bit straightfoward....
4 vampire hexmage
4 Geralf's Messenger
4 crypt ghast
4 phyrexian obliterator
1 Midnight Banshee
1 Mikaeus, the Unhallowed
1 Myojin of Night's Reach
1 Necropolis Regent

4 dark ritual
4 Chainer's Edict
4 consuming vapors
3 expedition map
1 Lashwrithe

16 swamp
3 cabal coffers
3 dark depths
2 urborg, tomb of yawgmoth
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Thanks for the input guys, @rawsugar, i understand completely where you are coming from when you say that the sweep is all too common, and that the creatures are just not up to scratch, I almost agree. However, after doing demo practices against the last few tournaments top five decks, I wasn't that unhappy! Even though my creatures were small and almost pointless as creatures, cards like immortal servitude, smite and rootborn defences actually gave me a bit of an edge over some of the decks. I won't Say I won against many of the decks in best of three, but even to beat a few decks of different build really boosted my confidence in the mechanic.

As for his royal nibs thragtusk, a smite, orzhov charm or similar still deals with him plenty good and I it's turn four or five you can even save your opponent the trouble of having the extra life!

And again, if you disagree please say so, and if you agree, pop out some cards you reckon would be worthwhile having in this deck! Thanks
As for thragtusk, skullcrack is the perfect card, and now is definitely the time to splash colours in little amounts of needs be, restoration angel and thragtusk are neatly dealt with by bin obedience and skullcrack, with that extra tuen for extortionists like kingpin to be annoying on the battlefield for a little longer. Additionally, ultimate price is a brilliant way to deal with either and since it has low cost, why not throw An extort or two on top?
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