Eldritch Moon is the gift that keeps on giving. A number of cards from Magic's newest set have broken into Modern, and I had success with Eldritch Evolution two weeks ago with the 12-Moon deck.
Today I'm working with another Eldritch Moon standout: Splendid Reclamation. As soon as the card was revealed the gears started turning for those of us who like to brew, and the result is a fun deck that wins in a familiar-but-still-novel way.
Enter Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle. While you're used to seeing this card kill with Scapeshift, Primeval Titann or Prismatic Omen, it's also best friends with Splendid Reclamation in a deck colloquially known as "Graveshift."
Step 1: Find a way to put lands into your graveyard.
Step 2: Cast Splendid Reclamation.
Step 3: Profit.
This deck has a few ways to accomplish step one. The familiar Dredge shell fills up our graveyard, filling it with Valakuts and Mountains galore. If the Dredge plan doesn't come together, Molten Vortex fills the graveyard while controlling the board, and Life from the Loam keeps the engine going. Faithless Looting, Tormenting Voice and Insolent Neonate round out all the ways the deck has to fill the graveyard quickly.
Step two is a little more tricky, and this is where a forgotten uncommon from Dark Ascension comes in. Mystic Retrieval is perfect for this deck, allowing it to dredge freely and then simply flash Mystic Retrieval back to return a Splendid Reclamation to hand, removing the pesky necessity of actually drawing your win condition. Good starts with this deck culminate in a full graveyard by the third turn, spending three mana to flash back Mystic Retrieval for Splendid Reclamation and then casting it for the win on the fourth turn.
With the basics out of the way, enjoy!
Without a doubt, the hardest part of this deck is sideboarding. Opponents will certainly have graveyard hate at the ready, and while one of the most popular ones, Grafdigger's Cage, is beatable since it doesn't stop dredging nor lands from coming back from the graveyard, some of the other hate cards are more problematic. This deck can win through a Relic of Progenitus or two, but it's a struggle when those decks also present pressure on your life total. Similarly, some decks can just race you in all three games while also pressuring your graveyard in sideboarded games.
I've thought a lot about transformation sideboards to combat this. The idea is this: they bring in graveyard hate, and you board in 15 cards that don't care about the graveyard. There are lots of ideas for this – from becoming a Scapeshift deck to a Primeval Titan deck to a Through the Breach deck (and probably more), but thus far I've found those plans lacking. There's not enough room to board in ramp cards along with the Scapeshift plan, while Through the Breach / Emrakul, the Aeons Torn is inconsistent. In addition, making those decisions means you don't have access to generically good sideboard cards like Anger of the Gods, Crumble to Dust, Gnaw to the Bone and Ancient Grudge. Still, with all that said it may be better than trying to fight through the hate.
Whichever way you decide to go, this deck is a fun one that attacks Modern on a different angle, and if you're a fan of a lot of Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle triggers, this is the deck for you.
Thanks for reading,
@Chosler88 on Twitter/Twitch