In LSV's most recent article, "Initial Technology - The Evolution of Extended," he claims the Extended format to look like this:
Other ("not recommended")
GW Summoning Trap
To these lists, I think it's important to add Mythic Conscription (Tier 1), UW Control (Tier 1/2), Naya Shaman (Tier 1/2), and Necrotic Ooze (Tier 2).
With the start of the PTQ season for PT Nagoya, I've been mostly playing Extended. The deck I've been focusing on has been Jund; of the three PTQs to run so far, Jund has taken down 6 of the 24 Top-8 slots (25%). For reference:
MTGO PTQs 01-02-2011, 01-07-2011; PTQ, Amsterdam, 01-07-2011
UW Control: 2
GW Summong Trap: 2*
Mythic Conscription: 1
Necrotic Ooze: 1
Tempered Steel: 1
White Weenie: 1
"Splinter" RUG: 1
*s denote the winners, though this is too small of a sample size to care much right now.
Digging Deeper into Jund
Here are each of the Top 8 Jund lists.
Ch0b1, 3rd Place MTGO PTQ, 01-02-2011
Mattijs Nijboer, 2nd Place PTQ (Amsterdam), 01-07-2011
Niels de Jong, 7th Place PTQ (Amsterdam), 01-07-2011
En3myOfMyEnemy, 3rd Place MTGO PTQ, 01-07-2011
Edel, 4th Place MTGO PTQ, 01-07-2011
Ondriq, 5th Place MTGO PTQ, 01-07-2011
Each deck had 26 Lands (to be examined later). Here are the 26 nonland cards that every player agreed with in their 60:
16 creatures, 6 removal spells, and 4 Blightning. That leaves just 7 cards to work with in each maindeck, and here is how each player filled those out:
5 creatures, 3 removal spells (obviously with Shriekmaw overlapping each category).
Same as above.
5 creatures, 2 removal spells (look familliar yet?)
5 creatures, 3 removal spells (as well as Shriekmaw pulling double-duty once more).
Filling Out the Removal Suite
Each deck played two additional removal spells: Either 2 Terminate or 2 Maelstrom Pulse. Both have their merits, but my vote goes toward Maelstrom Pulse. Pulse protects you against a wider variety of permanents, most notably Prismatic Omen, Leyline of Sanctity, Jace, the Mind Sculptor, and Tempered Steel. It also best protects you from most other deck's most broken draws in its ability to deal with multiple problem cards at a time. 2 Maelstrom Pulse are added to our base list.
Fauna Shaman or No?
Four of the six decks played 2 Fauna Shaman and three of the six decks played 3 Fauna Shaman. The advantages of Fauna Shaman should be pretty obvious. First, being a 2-drop plays well in a deck with only either four (4 Putrid Leech) or six (with 2 Sygg, River Cutthroat) 2-drops otherwise; Second, because it enables any creature to become a Demigod of Revenge, and/or pitch a Demigod of Revenge into the graveyard. Both are advantageous, as pitching a "useless" Demigod of Revenge early before you can pay its mana cost still hits the board when you play your first. Last, Fauna Shaman functions as a tutor effect for Shriekmaw, Bloodbraid Elf, Kitchen Finks, and Anathemancer. Postboard it can search out Great Sable Stag or Obstinate Baloth as needed.
Finding the Last Creatures
2 Maelstrom Pulse, 2 Fauna Shaman, and 1 Shriekmaw leave 2 cards to choose. One option is to play Fauna Shaman and either Anathemancer or Kitchen Finks. The other option, in my opinion, is to play 2 Kitchen Finks or 2 Thoughtseize.
Personally, this is the core of the maindeck Jund list that I would recommend for testing:
Kitchen Finks is a solid threat in almost every single non-Combo match. Anathemancer is an exceptional card against the field right now, but the recent prevalence of even maindeck Leyline of Sanctity leads me to cut the maindeck total to the minimum 2. It can be tutored for with Fauna Shaman when needed, and some additional number can certainly live in the sideboard.
Now is the time to examine the mana base! 🙂
On turn 2, we want R for Lightning Bolt, BG for Putrid Leech, 1G for Fauna Shaman, and 1B for Shriekmaw. Obviously, Savage Lands is the only land that guarantees this. Best case scenario is on then 2 to be able to cast RB and BG.
On turn 3, we want all of the above, as well as 1GG for Kitchen Finks, 1RB for Anathemancer, 1RB for Blightning, 1GB for Maelstrom Pulse. Any of the 2-drops can also be tutored for & cast this turn with an extra G. Best case scenario is on turn 3 to be able to cast 1GG, 1RR, 1GB, and 1RB.
Past turn 4, (B/R)(B/R)(B/R)(B/R)(B/R) is the other main priority for Demigod of Revenge.
The Top-8 lists all have the following lands in common:
Totaling 19 lands and leaving 7 left to choose. All but one player chose to run 1 Lavaclaw Reaches, and I completely agree. The Worldwake manlands are incredibly awesome, and I'd highly recommend including as many as a deck can handle.
That leaves us so far with 2 RGB land, 5 BG land, 5 RG land, and 4 RB land on top of the 2 G, 2 B, and 1 R. Crude addition gives us 14 G, 13 B, and 12 R. If you look at our turn-by-turn list above, there should probably be a higher count especially of R-producing lands than we've got so far, and I'd like to start with at least two more. But should they be RG or RB? I would suggest 2 Savage Lands, 1 Copperline Gorge, and 1 Twilight Mire to round out the mana base.
Demigod of Revenge's Effect on the Land Base
Demigod of Revenge has a rather restrictive mana cost of (R/B)(R/B)(R/B)(R/B)(R/B), until you consider that the only lands in the deck that cannot make either R or B are the 2 Forests (and, to some extent, the third Verdant Catacombs). I quickly dismissed the card for my first round of testing because of its mana cost (while simultaneously including 2 Bituminous Blast that truly aren't much more difficult to cast!) without really thinking about how easy Demigod truly is to cast. So for now, I think it's safe to consider its effect as negligible.
This is the maindeck that I am going to be testing with this week. Sideboard cards to consider include Volcanic Fallout, Nature's Claim, Naturalize, Great Sable Stag, Obstinate Baloth, Thoughtseize, Duress, Terminate, Wurmcoil Engine, Deathmark, Fulminator Mage, Guttural Response, Autumn's Veil, Thought Hemorrhage, Memoricide, and Anathemancer, but further testing is required to figure out in what quantity and how to sideboard them.
My current thoughts are that Volcanic Fallout is a must, Nature's Claim is a must, Fulminator Mage would be pretty slick, Great Sable Stag is a must, & Obstinate Baloth can probably stay home. During last week's MTGO PTQ, I assumed any opponent with Green boarded them in, and usually left my Blightnings in the Sideboard. The 3 that I boarded in never got cast over 9 rounds, and they ended up being 100% irrelevant the entire day.
Coolest moment from that PTQ:
My Tempered Steel opponent had a Court Homunculus and a Tidehollow Sculler (hiding Bloodbraid Elf) in play, both tapped and attacking, along with two copies of his deck's namesake Enchantment and no cards in hand. I had an untapped Putrid Leech in play, 2 life, and just a Bituminous Blast in hand. I cast the Bituminous Blast on the Tidehollow Sculler, hit Maelstrom Pulse for both Tempered Steels with the Cascade, and traded my Putrid Leech for his Court Homunculus. 🙂 My topdecks were worse than his however and Bloodbraid Elf wasn't enough to win the race a few turns later.
Worst moment from that PTQ:
Round two, game 1. I had just come back from a savage loss in round 1, game 1 to win that round against Prismatic Omen, and I was playing the deck again in round 2. I had my opponent to a single draw step with no nonland permanents in play and about 6 lands. I pumped my Putrid Leech to take him to 4 and me to 12 with a Kitchen Finks in play as well. My opponent dug through about a billion cards with Preordain, found his Prismatic Omen, found his second Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle, and had Misty Rainforest for exactsies since I got careless with my lifetotal. Remember: Valakut decks are really good at dealing damage in 3s! 13 life would have been much, much safer in that position than 12 life, even if both were longshots.
I hope this helps for those of you looking to play Jund as the Extended season progresses. If I could play in GP Atlanta, this is certainly the deck and the list that I would start with.
Thanks for reading 🙂 Please, I encourage any of you to talk about your own personal builds in the comments. Discuss what you see! It's fun, I promise 🙂