This week, I decided to branch out and try one of Modern's other creature decks, and it's a really fun one: Slivers.
Slivers have been around Magic forever, drifting in and out of playability. The deck has made appearances in Legacy over the years, but it was never a contender in Modern until Magic 2014 came along and kicked things up a notch, providing a new species of slivers that only worked for your own team, rather than pumping all slivers like the previous strains did.
Along with some vital new inclusions like Manaweft Sliver and Predatory Sliver, the deck became at least a fringe part of the metagame. But it was Dragons of Tarkir and Collected Company that truly pushed it over the edge and made it a competitive brew.
Adam Bowman did his part as well, championing the deck around the regional circuit and even finding some Grand Prix success, as I documented in a deck tech with him at Grand Prix Oklahoma City last year. Since then, Bowman has continued to make progress with the deck; here's his most recent list:
That's a lot of different slivers, and a lot of abilities. Without a doubt, the 12 "lords" (Sinew Sliver, Predatory Sliver, Sedge Sliver) are the backbone of the deck, providing the pump necessary to actually tangle in combat and kill opponents.
Slivers usually have low power/toughness, but they make up for it in unmatched versatility. Manaweft Sliver ramps your team and helps keep up mana for Regeneration. Syphon Sliver and Darkheart Sliver gain life and race aggro decks. Necrotic Sliver and Harmonic Sliver help deal with problem permanents and turn opposing removal into two-for-ones. Galerider Sliver offers crucial evasion. Blur Sliver is a haste engine, allowing the deck to shrug off sweepers.
Diffusion Sliver is possibly the best of them all, and a card I would love to have an analog to in Merfolk. It's a cheaper, on-tribe Kira, Great Glass-Spinner, and makes opposing removal spells difficult to resolve. Between Cavern of Souls and Diffusion Sliver, this deck can give opponents fits.
Speaking of the manabase, this is probably the only five-color deck in Magic to also play four Mutavault. While the mana is an occasional issue, Cavern of Souls and Sliver Hive work overtime, while Manaweft Sliver can smooth out the edges and help fire off Collected Company.
The sideboard plugs some gaps. Screeching Sliver messes up decks that need specific cards like Ad Nauseam and Chord of Calling combo decks. Leeching Sliver is an out to Worship. Frenetic Sliver makes Supreme Verdict a 50-50 shot to kill each individual sliver. Telekinetic Sliver allows you to tap down Tron – a deck that typically only plays at sorcery speed – in their upkeep. Harmonic Sliver tears up Affinity and Lantern Control players everywhere, and tying it all together is Homing Sliver, a card I would consider increasing the count of, to help slivercycle into exactly the sliver you need.
Modern Slivers is a blast, and it's competitive to boot. Enjoy!