My first Modern love

I’ve been of the firm belief that Modern, as a format, is shit. A format where it’s perfectly alright to cast a 3/3 for G on turn one, but not a Counterspell for just straight up UU, or draw three cards on turn 4, is inherently sick in my book, and I’ve come to dislike the UWR Control decks because of their reliance on the shitty gimp-duals and off-colour fetchlands. Sometimes it feels like I’m playing 2006 Vintage, only it’s only enemy colour on the fetchlands and I take 3 instead of 1 every time I fetch. Comparing it favorably to Legacy, aside from an economic standpoint, is impossible in my world. Even then, some Modern decks like Jund or Junk can quite easily cost as much as some Legacy decks.

All of this aside, I think I’ve finally found a deck that suits me. It’s a control deck in essence, which I like, but with an awesome late game. I’m talking, of course, about Mono-U Tron.

4 Urza’s Mine
4 Urza’s Power Plant
4 Urza’s Tower
1 Academy Ruins
1 Tectonic Edge
9 Island

4 Treasure Magesolemnsimulacrum.hq
3 Solemn Simulacrum (“Sadbot”)
2 Wurmcoil Engine
1 Platinum Angel
1 Sundering Titan

4 Condescend
4 Remand
4 Thirst for Knowledge
2 Repeal
1 Cyclonic Rift
1 Spell Burst
4 Expedition Map
3 Talisman of Dominance
2 Mindslaver
1 Oblivion Stone

Side:
4 Spreading Seas
2 Hurkyl’s Recall
2 Negate
2 Repeal
2 Squelch
2 Dismember
1 Tectonic Edge

 

This list, which is an exact copy of a GPT-winning list played by a Ben Fleming earlier this year, was the list I shamelessly netdecked and played at my local monday-night tournament. We were fewer than usual, only seven people showed up to participate, meaning three rounds were enough to sire a winner. I didn’t get the first-round bye this time, unfortunately.

birthingpod.hq

Round 1: Melira Pod – We go back and forth in the first game, I assemble Tron quickly, but have no proper follow-up. Meanwhile, he pods but I Oblivion Stone away his board before he can assemble the combo. In turn six or seven, I cast and activate Mindslaver, but I’m left with a grip full of blue cards, but no blue mana source. His board is a single Noble Hierarch, his hand is a Viscera Seer, a Shriekmaw and a Chord of Calling. I cast the Seer who immediately sacrifice himself to himself, looking at a land. I Chord for zero, shuffling his library. Finally, I Evoke his Shriekmaw and kill his Noble Hirearch, leaving him with only lands in play, nothing in hand and me with a full girp. I fail to draw an Island, a Talisman or a Sadbot, and a couple of turns later, he draws a Scavenging Ooze. I lose quickly to a 6/6 Ooze.

I board in Spreading Seas to mess with his mana, and some more removal. I take out the Remands and something else. I have no idea how to sideboard in this format, but ideally, I’d like to not get into a too severe grind against him, since he probably has good silver bullets.

In game two, I mulligan to five before seeing a single land, and keep a mana-heavy hand. We go back and forth for quite some time, and I counter his combo pieces, but can’t find anything to do with my vast amounts of mana. Eventually, he draws his singleton Scavenging Ooze naturally (again!) and I lose.

0-1 (0-2)

 

Round 2: UWR – This game is a lot smoother. He has few threats and I draw more than enough lands and Expedition Maps to offset his couple of Tectonic Edges. I Remand a Keranos, God of Stormskeranos,godofstorms.full which buys me enough time to power through his countermagic to get Mindslaver + Academy Ruins + about 15 mana online. I really love winning like that.

I board Spreading Seas again, which was probably a mistake, but I did use them to turn off a Tectonic Edge in game two, which allowed me to safely assemble Urzatron.

After establishing an impressive manabase in game two, I bait a Mindslaver, which he counters, but after spending 1UUU to do so and draw a card, he’s tapped out for the turn. I drop a Treasure Mage which finds a Wurmcoil Engine, and he can’t find an answer quickly enough.

1-1 (2-2)

 

Round 3: Slivers – I open a hand of a bunch of mana, Treasure Mage and Cyclonic Rift. I figure the latter is the shit against his deck, and I was proven right. He drops a Gemhide Sliver and a couple of Diffusion Slivers which results in a sliverhivelord.fullturn four Sliver Hivelord. He continues to drop Predator Slivers and Bonescythe Slivers, but as he swings for lethal, I overload the Cyclonic Rift, returning his team to his hand, with most of his mana tapped. From there, I take over the game and win through a combination of Mindslaver tapping his team with Gemhide Sliver and Wurmcoil Engine beats.

For the third time this night, I bring in Spreading Seas, since almost all of his lands are rainbow coloured. I also wanted to turn off his Cavern of Souls, turning on my countermagic.

In game two, I mulligan to six but open a hand of lands + Cyclonic Rift again! I snap keep and game two is a copy of game one mostly, he drops some dudes, I Cyclonic Rift them all back, and take over with superior mana production.

2-1 (4-2)

 

Overall, 2-1 isn’t a stellar result, but allright considering I had never played the deck before. I took some time and replaced the proxies with what I already have in my collection, and I’m actually planning on getting the rest of the deck together. It’s cheap enough to lure me into Modern somewhat, and I like how Treasure Mage gives me a proper toolbox to work with. The deck screwed on blue mana a couple of times over the evening, which seems bad, but I’m not sure what to take out to get more Islands in there. Hopefully, I’ll get to play the deck a couple of more times before November, where I’ll bring it to a proper tournament for the first time. Modern’s still shit, though.

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