Feature - Top 5 Cards of Germany Nationals 2011

Posted in Event Coverage on August 14, 2011

By Tobi Henke

German Nationals bore witness to the upheaval of certain well-established facts. Especially, the event surprised everybody with a new order to a Standard format that seemed to be so set in stone.

Shrine of Burning Rage

This card destroyed the hopes of a number of U/B Control players. With typically just one Into the Roil and one Karn Liberated, people found themselves unable to deal with a threat which came down on turn two and won many a game virtually by itself. Also, the Caw-Blade players, nowadays often eschewing Oblivion Ring, had their fair share of difficulties.



A typical value card, Auramancer returned everything from Divine Favor to Pacifism, from Ice Cage to Brink of Disaster in the M12 drafts this weekend. One of the hallmarks of a good player was to know when to hold it back to return an enchantment later on, and when to play it early as a simple bear.


Goblin Guide

Goblin Guide was the cornerstone of the red deck. The immediate impact it had every time it hit the battlefield on turn one was central to the red decks' success. On the other hand, whenever the early aggression petered out, a couple of extra lands boosted the opponents' chances to turn the game around. Goblin Guide is a two-edged sword.


Into the Roil

Into the Roil may look innocuous enough, but its versatility knew to impress. A number of Caw-Blade players swore by the universal solution. For other decks it was the only line of defense against noncreature permanents. Timing it correctly was not always obvious, especially in the ubiquitous staring contest against a constantly growing Shrine of Burning Rage. It was not easy to use, but essential to have.


Squadron Hawk

Squadron Hawk is a card of the weekend not because of its impact, but specifically because of the lack of impact. 44 out of 195 players had pinned their hopes on the Hawk, and all of them were disappointed. No Caw-Blade made it to the Top 8. Compared to the results of previous Nationals, this was surprising to say the least. This weekend has severely ruffled its feathers.

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