We're still watching the Born of the Gods spoilers roll in, and as such it makes little sense to focus on Standard just yet. Give it another week and we can start piecing things together for what will assuredly be a fresh format, but right now we're still a little too in the dark.
That being the case, I figured I would show off another fun Modern deck. Unfortunately Melissa won't be joining me today (I know, I know…) but she should be back in a week or so and we can collaborate again.
The deck I want to take a look at today is fairly new and is one of the first attempts to exploit the Theros land, Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx. Yes, I'm sure we're all tired of the devotion mechanic in Standard, but I think if you can bear with the limited amount of it in Modern, you should be ready to witness some of fun things that are capable of happening with it in the older format. Here's the list we're going to be trying out.
Magic Online user Moi piloted this list to a 4-0 finish in a Magic Online Daily Event, which seems like no small feat when you consider the diversity and power of the Modern format; you almost literally need to be prepared to play against anything. With that being said, let's see what we get paired against!
Monogreen Devotion vs. Monoblack Discard
Monogreen Devotion vs. Monogreen Devotion
Monogreen Devotion vs. GW Hate Bears
Monogreen Devotion vs. Krark-Clan Combo
So toward the end of match one my mic cut out for some reason, but it only lasted about three minutes or so. Mics, amirite? So if you comment on this anomaly in the, uh, comments, I'll know you didn't actually read the article, for whatever that's worth.
And that last match, I actually have no idea what it was. Based on the Open the Vaults, it seems like it was probably Krark-Clan Combo which uses things like Krark-Clan Ironworks and a bunch of cheap cantripping artifacts to cast something like a huge Banefire or an Emrakul, the Aeons Torn. After all, what's the most degenerate thing you can cast in Modern? That's right: an Emrakul. That dude will tear your Aeons wide open! But I digress.
About the deck though, it is explosive! As you can probably see I even won on turn three in one game, which is actually insane. This doesn't happen too often in Modern (it mostly occurs from an uncontested Affinity deck with a Cranial Plating) but when it does, it's kind of cool. It's so weird to see Nykthos and Burning-Tree Emissary making a splash in Modern, but the cards are powerful, so it only makes sense that they appeared at one point or another. We're also taking advantage of the casting cost of things like Strangleroot Geist and - wait for it - Wistful Selkie! ...what even is that thing?! I wonder what it's so wistful about. What do you long for, Selkie?
Anyway, what better way to exploit the legendary land that has oft been compared to the degenerate Gaea's Cradle than something like Craterhoof Behemoth, or better yet... Genesis Wave! it's worth noting that there are only two cards in the deck that can't be cast off of a Genesis Wave: Primal Command and Rude Awakening. Well, not to mention the other Genesis Waves. Everything else will hit the battlefield. Sometimes if you want to grab either the Primal Command or the Rude Awakening you can hope to "mill" one of them with a huge Genesis Wave, followed by hitting an Eternal Witness, as I did in match one against an Ensnaring Bridge: a card which our deck otherwise has no answer for. I had to add a million mana and literally Genesis Wave for every card in the deck in order to get the Primal Command. It's an insanely versatile tool and I wouldn't be against actually adding a second over the one Rude Awakening.
GW Hate Bears was my only loss and for good reason. We have a hard time dealing with a lot of their creatures. Aven Mindcensor and Leonin Arbiter are terrible for us as they prevent us searching with things like Primeval Titan, or if they use things like Ghost Quarter or Path to Exile on us (which they will). And lemme tell you what a nightmare Gaddock Teeg is for us. Whew! I'm not sure if, as a green deck, we have any good answers for this deck. We can't really sweep things away as it would theoretically sweep our own guys away as well. And of course there's the minor issue of the fact that we're playing green. (Does that sentence make sense? It feels off...) We could always try a couple of Engineered Explosives, but that also requires us to hit something like a Utopia Sprawl or a Fertile Ground just to get a second color. And it won't even work if they already have a Gaddock Teeg in play! It's just a mess and I think we should chock that matchup up to a loss, unless there's something I'm missing.
Modern has proven - to me at least - to be much more fun and diverse than I had originally thought. New decks keep popping up by the week and they all seem fairly competitive! I almost want to compile of list of all the viable (or at least "competitive") decks in the format, but honestly, it would be fairly long. I just recently added Elves and Krack-Clan Combo to my personal list because they seem fairly interesting. I've been enjoying Modern much more recently thanks to some of the fun things you can do, and I hope showing you guys some of these more obscure decks has piqued your interest as well.
That's all I have for now. A while back I mentioned doing a 24 hour stream on my TwitchTV Channel for charity. Well, Melissa will be returning this weekend and we're tentatively planning it for this coming Sunday. I'm still undecided about the exact charity, but if you guys are interested or like the idea of this, please pass it on. You can find my TwitchTV link below. Thanks for reading and I'll see you guys later this week.
Frank Lepore@FrankLepore on TwitterFrankLepore on TwitchTV