[Official] State of Modern Thread (B&R 07/13/2020)

Spsiegel1987
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Post by Spsiegel1987 » 1 year ago

Yeah, Sheridan, I can tell you right now, a Veil ban will not increase Shadow meta shares. The Bant matchup is so extremely awful it actually kills off every flavor of the archetype. I literally see almost no matchups right now that makes playing any form of shadow worth playing.

I'm just messing with BR Unearth, Jund is feeling bleh to me despite it being positioned just fine. Snow decks is the best thing to be doing in modern right now, head and shoulders above the rest.

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Spsiegel1987 wrote:
1 year ago
Yeah, Sheridan, I can tell you right now, a Veil ban will not increase Shadow meta shares. The Bant matchup is so extremely awful it actually kills off every flavor of the archetype. I literally see almost no matchups right now that makes playing any form of shadow worth playing.

I'm just messing with BR Unearth, Jund is feeling bleh to me despite it being positioned just fine. Snow decks is the best thing to be doing in modern right now, head and shoulders above the rest.
I decided to sell off many of my other random MTGO staples to get some Uros and FlashSnakes. Holy mother of God Uro is a stupidly powerful card. The deck is basically UW, but your cantrips either filter mana (astrolabe), are a flying 1/1 deathtoucher (snake), put lands into play (Uro), or protect all your stuff (Veil). I never thought I'd ever play a Snap/Cryptic deck in which Snapcaster Mage is often one of the worst cards in the deck, and all my cantrips are permanents that do other things. But the cherry on top is getting to play a 3-4 mana 6/6 with multiple, repeatable upsides, that can come back over and over again.

I still hate green and I hate being forced to play it because of unnecessarily-pushed and expensive Mythics and better value cantrips/counterpells. It's sickening.

That said, I played a 3-game match against Jund earlier today that was a glorious sight to behold. I was able to win G3 on like turn 19 after a resolved early game Choke (was able to barely stay afloat with Uros, using precious new lands to buy time, until I could Aether Gust it away and re-counter it on the way back down). Being able to cast and re-cast Uro is stupid. Having access to Path for his Kroxa, while none of his removal permanently dealt with Uro was the "mirror breaker."

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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 1 year ago

Spsiegel1987 wrote:
1 year ago
Yeah, Sheridan, I can tell you right now, a Veil ban will not increase Shadow meta shares. The Bant matchup is so extremely awful it actually kills off every flavor of the archetype. I literally see almost no matchups right now that makes playing any form of shadow worth playing.

I'm just messing with BR Unearth, Jund is feeling bleh to me despite it being positioned just fine. Snow decks is the best thing to be doing in modern right now, head and shoulders above the rest.
If you wanna know some fringe decks that beat the Snow decks, just ask. I know some that seem solid in the current meta, even if they're considered "Tier 3." Now, they may not be your cup of tea, but I thought I'd offer.
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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

That Piotr Glogowski deck looks sick :)

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Simto wrote:
1 year ago
That Piotr Glogowski deck looks sick :)
It is. Personally, I only run 3 FlashSnakes and a Brazen Borrower instead. My SB is also a little different, but I based most of mine on this (which is basically the same thing)


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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
If you wanna know some fringe decks that beat the Snow decks, just ask. I know some that seem solid in the current meta, even if they're considered "Tier 3." Now, they may not be your cup of tea, but I thought I'd offer.
For non-T3, I reckon the prison versions of Whirza (Bridges, Needles, Emries, Engineers etc.), along with G-Tron and Infect are reasonable if not positive against them, but haven't played much Modern the past few weeks due to the quarantine so I might be wrong.
gkourou wrote:
1 year ago
I doubt it's the best deck in the format, which also I don't see as a problem. I think it was high time a control deck was back in T1.


On a side note, I don't really think that Astrolabe is the main reason for the proliferation of UGx Snow strategies, but rather absurd value cards like Uro and in some ways T3feri and Veil, negating fundamental weaknesses in Midrange strategies.

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Simto wrote:
1 year ago
That Piotr Glogowski deck looks sick :)
It is. Personally, I only run 3 FlashSnakes and a Brazen Borrower instead. My SB is also a little different, but I based most of mine on this (which is basically the same thing)

Nice! Wish I had dosh to get it in paper :( I want a control/midrange deck when I don't want to play tron.

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
.
On a side note, I don't really think that Astrolabe is the main reason for the proliferation of UGx Snow strategies, but rather absurd value cards like Uro and in some ways T3feri and Veil, negating fundamental weaknesses in Midrange strategies.
Well, when your Gain 3 Life spell is also a 6/6 that ramps your mana and repeats its effect every time it attacks for 6...I guess that's what's necessary to be competitive? When your Cryptic Command actually only costs 1 green mana, and its effects last the rest of the turn? When your cantrips can profitably block or fix your mana to allows both greedy manabases and dodge Blood Moon? It's disgusting how pushed stuff like this is, but if that's what they want for Modern..... :thinking: :thinking: :thinking:

Again, just waiting for insight from Forsythe about expectations for the format.
Simto wrote:
1 year ago
Nice! Wish I had dosh to get it in paper :( I want a control/midrange deck when I don't want to play tron.
I sold off most of my Urza stuff (bought up on the super cheap right after Opal ban) and some of my black staples to pony up the 380 tix needed for JUST Uros/Snakes. Luckily I already had UG manabases from my Sultai Shadow builds (which felt unplayable without OUaT).

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Well, when your Gain 3 Life spell is also a 6/6 that ramps your mana and repeats its effect every time it attacks for 6...I guess that's what's necessary to be competitive? When your Cryptic Command actually only costs 1 green mana, and its effects last the rest of the turn? When your cantrips can profitably block or fix your mana to allows both g soreedy manabases and dodge Blood Moon? It's disgusting how pushed stuff like this is, but if that's what they want for Modern.....
Implying that Modern didn't always have extremely pushed stuff... While 2019 has been an outlier in total number of cards, eternal formats have been (generally) utilizing the most pushed stuff since forever.

We always knew that if fair Midrange/Control needed to be competitive with the linear/combo decks they needed extremely pushed options, both answer-wise and threat-wise, so I don't really see a (big) problem with those strategies being at the top. Don't forget that Jund and straight up UW Midrange/Control (with or without SFM) are actually good at this time, so it's not just Snow strategies.

So I'd say enjoy it, because we're at a moment in time where there's plenty of everything and for everyone at the top in Modern

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Well, when your Gain 3 Life spell is also a 6/6 that ramps your mana and repeats its effect every time it attacks for 6...I guess that's what's necessary to be competitive? When your Cryptic Command actually only costs 1 green mana, and its effects last the rest of the turn? When your cantrips can profitably block or fix your mana to allows both g soreedy manabases and dodge Blood Moon? It's disgusting how pushed stuff like this is, but if that's what they want for Modern.....
Implying that Modern didn't always have extremely pushed stuff... While 2019 has been an outlier in total number of cards, eternal formats have been (generally) utilizing the most pushed stuff since forever.

We always knew that if fair Midrange/Control needed to be competitive with the linear/combo decks they needed extremely pushed options, both answer-wise and threat-wise, so I don't really see a (big) problem with those strategies being at the top. Don't forget that Jund and straight up UW Midrange/Control (with or without SFM) are actually good at this time, so it's not just Snow strategies.
Well Jund gets Wrenn and Six as well as Kroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger, both of which are incredibly pushed, under-the-curve, super high value cards that are all-inclusively threats, disruption, and value. What UW decks are doing well? Having played a lot of UW, I can't imagine why anyone would choose to play that over Snakes and Uros. Unless (like me until yesterday) couldn't stomach shelling out the massive cash required to splash green and fill it with expensive Mytics.
So I'd say enjoy it, because we're at a moment in time where there's plenty of everything and for everyone at the top in Modern
It's honestly difficult to enjoy knowing that A) something from the decks will get banned if they remain good or B) something will be printed making things I just spent $400 on irrelevant. I'm enjoying it while I can, but Modern is very much not a "non-rotating" format these days.

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
On a side note, I don't really think that Astrolabe is the main reason for the proliferation of UGx Snow strategies, but rather absurd value cards like Uro and in some ways T3feri and Veil, negating fundamental weaknesses in Midrange strategies.
Questionable that some of the mana costs would be managable without Astrolabe in these decks.

UG
UU
UUU
WWU
UUGG

Nah, Astrolabe is absolutely making these engines smooth.
UR Control UR

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
What UW decks are doing well? Having played a lot of UW, I can't imagine why anyone would choose to play that over Snakes and Uros. Unless (like me until yesterday) couldn't stomach shelling out the massive cash required to splash green and fill it with expensive Mytics.
UW Stoneblade and UW Control have regularly done well in PTQ's, Challenges and Preliminaries. There is a possibility that the costs are holding people back, but there are advantages to staying UW or going Esper. Similarly, Thopter/Sword or Breach and Heliod/Balista decks shouldn't be as prevalent as they are due to high amount of clicks involved, but that doesn't stop people playing them and do well.
cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
I'm enjoying it while I can, but Modern is very much not a "non-rotating" format these days.
By that very loose definition Modern was always a rotating format... And so is Legacy. Hell, even Vintage.
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
Questionable that some of the mana costs would be managable without Astrolabe in these decks.

UG
UU
UUU
WWU
UUGG

Nah, Astrolabe is absolutely making these engines smooth.
Similar constrains were had by other decks, like UW control with 4-5 colorless lands and 2 Plains, Astrolabe definitely helps, never said it didn't but the huge influx of "pushed, under-the-curve, super high value cards that are all-inclusively threats, disruption, and value", as @cfusionpm above put it, played a bigger role for this Midrange renaissance.

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
What UW decks are doing well? Having played a lot of UW, I can't imagine why anyone would choose to play that over Snakes and Uros. Unless (like me until yesterday) couldn't stomach shelling out the massive cash required to splash green and fill it with expensive Mytics.
UW Stoneblade and UW Control have regularly done well in PTQ's, Challenges and Preliminaries. There is a possibility that the costs are holding people back, but there are advantages to staying UW or going Esper. Similarly, Thopter/Sword or Breach and Heliod/Balista decks shouldn't be as prevalent as they are due to high amount of clicks involved, but that doesn't stop people playing them and do well.
Having spent more time than I would like to admit playing bad UW builds, I cannot fathom why anyone would be playing it by choice when cards like Uro are legal. What is the advantage of Stoneforge? Take 4 mana over 2 turns to get a 4/4 that gains some life? Why do that when you can play a 6/6 that gains life every turn? And ramps your mana? And doesn't jam your slots full of terrible cards (like Stoneforge Mystic herself)? The only case I could think of is the extremely rare case in which the match is slow enough, and the opponent is light on removal, where a Sword of X and Y can stick around, attach, and go to work. But still, seems much easier to just play cantripping flash flying deathtouchers and 6/6s that gain life and ramp lands.

I can also say that I 100% sold out of Urza because of the clicks. I have lost numerous games to players forcing me to play it out, make requisite thopters to kill them, and then actually attack (despite having an infinite loop demonstrated). After the 4th or 5th time I lost a match to the clock (and seeing my Urza stuff triple in value) it was pretty easy to justify selling.

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Post by idSurge » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago

Similar constrains were had by other decks, like UW control with 4-5 colorless lands and 2 Plains, Astrolabe definitely helps, never said it didn't but the huge influx of "pushed, under-the-curve, super high value cards that are all-inclusively threats, disruption, and value", as cfusionpm above put it, played a bigger role for this Midrange renaissance.
I don't think so, I played UW, and I played TONS of UWR. A 2 color deck running FoR, that wants to go long, and the pivotal cards are UW or UUU, is just not the same as the pressure 3 color, intensive, mana bases feel.

The fact you could have 2 Astrolabe, 1 Forest, 1 FoR, and two islands out, and cast Supreme Verdict, on curve, after casting/saccing a Uro for value on turn 3, is a huge huge difference.
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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Nothing sums up Modern right now quite like casting Supreme Verdict using

:party: :party: :party:

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Post by Tzoulis » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Having spent more time than I would like to admit playing bad UW builds, I cannot fathom why anyone would be playing it by choice when cards like Uro are legal. What is the advantage of Stoneforge? Take 4 mana over 2 turns to get a 4/4 that gains some life? Why do that when you can play a 6/6 that gains life every turn? And ramps your mana? And doesn't jam your slots full of terrible cards (like Stoneforge Mystic herself)? The only case I could think of is the extremely rare case in which the match is slow enough, and the opponent is light on removal, where a Sword of X and Y can stick around, attach, and go to work. But still, seems much easier to just play cantripping flash flying deathtouchers and 6/6s that gain life and ramp lands.
We're talking about Midrange mirrors, the game will go longer, so SFM will be good. If you're fetching a Batterskull you're doing it wrong I guess? A Fire and Ice or a Feast and Famine do wonders against a deck full of UG creatures, plus Spell Queller is as good as ever. Snap is still a hell of a card. By staying on 2 colors you also open up slots for interaction, like Narset, Ashiok and more relevant threats that effectively carry swords. There are legit reasons to either stay UW or try another Tricolor.

I'd either go Esper (Kaya's Guile is a heck of a card) or Jeskai (Bolt is becoming all the more relevant), but that's personal preference and dislike for Green.
idSurge wrote:
1 year ago
I don't think so, I played UW, and I played TONS of UWR. A 2 color deck running FoR, that wants to go long, and the pivotal cards are UW or UUU, is just not the same as the pressure 3 color, intensive, mana bases feel.

The fact you could have 2 Astrolabe, 1 Forest, 1 FoR, and two islands out, and cast Supreme Verdict, on curve, after casting/saccing a Uro for value on turn 3, is a huge huge difference.
I too have played a lot of UW/UWR/WUB, but there was real tension with UW's mana bases. You'd often have to choose between interacting or mana fixing on T3, one of the most relevant turns, or not be able to interact on T2 because of Island and FoR, while I had Path in my hand. Color requirements were often insane.

Snow decks have the same requirements, that Astrolabe alleviates, but Uro is making the manabases extremely easy. Uro is what made these decks play Field of Ruin and not Astrolabe, I don't think we'd have these kind of manabases without Uro.

And that difference has made Midrange relevant again.

On a side note, Choke is good and populous again -_-

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Post by Aazadan » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Nothing sums up Modern right now quite like casting Supreme Verdict using

:party: :party: :party:
At least it wasn't .

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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

Tzoulis wrote:
1 year ago
cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Having spent more time than I would like to admit playing bad UW builds, I cannot fathom why anyone would be playing it by choice when cards like Uro are legal. What is the advantage of Stoneforge? Take 4 mana over 2 turns to get a 4/4 that gains some life? Why do that when you can play a 6/6 that gains life every turn? And ramps your mana? And doesn't jam your slots full of terrible cards (like Stoneforge Mystic herself)? The only case I could think of is the extremely rare case in which the match is slow enough, and the opponent is light on removal, where a Sword of X and Y can stick around, attach, and go to work. But still, seems much easier to just play cantripping flash flying deathtouchers and 6/6s that gain life and ramp lands.
We're talking about Midrange mirrors, the game will go longer, so SFM will be good. If you're fetching a Batterskull you're doing it wrong I guess? A Fire and Ice or a Feast and Famine do wonders against a deck full of UG creatures, plus Spell Queller is as good as ever. Snap is still a hell of a card. By staying on 2 colors you also open up slots for interaction, like Narset, Ashiok and more relevant threats that effectively carry swords. There are legit reasons to either stay UW or try another Tricolor.

I'd either go Esper (Kaya's Guile is a heck of a card) or Jeskai (Bolt is becoming all the more relevant), but that's personal preference and dislike for Green.
I can see that. I would definitely prefer to play Esper or Jeskai or honestly Grixis more than anything. But having cast, and recast, and recast, and recast the Uro over and over (often the same one), there is really nothing that remotely compares in the other colors. I have firmly stood by the fact that Stoneforge is trash long before she was unbanned, and I will continue to hold that opinion as long as considerably better options are available. In a world of top notch high value threats, she is mediocre at best. I can't even sell my digital copies because they aren't worth anything (she and the Swords and BS are all only about $2-3 each, and rightly so).

Maybe I build a Grixis snow list with Kroxas, and K Commands, and Cryptics, and Snaps, and Bolts, and Pushes, and Jaces, and Rals, and why not Blood Moon too?.... Hm...... :hmm: :party:

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Post by FoodChainGoblins » 1 year ago

Make sure you play quickly as well. I can definitely see a lot of these types of matches going to time. I guess being in quarantine and playing only MTGO doesn't make that first sentence mean much yet?..

On another note, why hasn't anyone jammed Uro AND Kroxa in the same deck yet? I can't do it. I told everyone Kroxa would go up eventually, but didn't buy them myself. I kind of stick by my decision to not play the card (because I don't mind not playing the card), but if it becomes the "norm."
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Post by Aazadan » 1 year ago

gkourou wrote:
1 year ago
The jund results we are seeing is mainly a result of people being stubborn with the deck & kroxa testing.
I've almost fully promo/foiled my Jund deck now. The only thing I'm missing is expedition fetches (it's next on my list, but I just bought a car, so I'm paying that off over the next few months first, plus the whole economy makes me hesitant to drop $1400 on those at the moment) and Wrenn and Six which I would rather wait on until there's an alternate border version. And of course, I can't play Magic in person anymore for the foreseeable future between paper already struggling in the area, and now it being irresponsible to travel to even FNM's (if anyone even still runs them). I am a bit annoyed with this turn of events.

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Post by Aazadan » 1 year ago

FoodChainGoblins wrote:
1 year ago
Make sure you play quickly as well. I can definitely see a lot of these types of matches going to time. I guess being in quarantine and playing only MTGO doesn't make that first sentence mean much yet?..

On another note, why hasn't anyone jammed Uro AND Kroxa in the same deck yet? I can't do it. I told everyone Kroxa would go up eventually, but didn't buy them myself. I kind of stick by my decision to not play the card (because I don't mind not playing the card), but if it becomes the "norm."
I've thought about it. It's really mana intensive but Wrenn plus Astrolabe can probably smooth things out. If that's not enough, Manamorphose might also be realistic.

I guess the issue though is what the payoff is. It feels to me like that would just dilute your deck, especially in the case of Kroxa where discard gets stronger as you can put more of it together at once, and the typical GU package being strongest with Snow, which means basics that don't play well with running both Titans at once.

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Post by Ym1r » 1 year ago

cfusionpm wrote:
1 year ago
Maybe I build a Grixis snow list with Kroxas, and K Commands, and Cryptics, and Snaps, and Bolts, and Pushes, and Jaces, and Rals, and why not Blood Moon too?.... Hm...... :hmm: :party:
Wait a minute... Waaaaait a minute... Astrolabe fixes our grixis mana so we can play any weirdly priced spell we want? DO YOU KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS?

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Post by ktkenshinx » 1 year ago

I'm really not sure why people are negative about Bant Snow Control being the best control game in town. This really isn't any different from Azorius Control (snowless) being the best control game in town prior to Astrolabe. The only difference is Astrolabe allows the tested UW shell, which we already know is the hands-down best control shell in Modern, to splash for more colors. Once you're splashing, it's easiest and less painful to just splash one color, and once you're committed to splashing one color, green is the obvious best choice. This is because green gets you Uro and Veil, and green + snow gets you Coatl. Coatl in particular drives you to Bant more than the rest, because Astrolabe is already incentivizing snow and neither red nor black have any particularly strong snow payoffs. They don't have strong control payoffs period, which is why neither Esper nor Grixis have been things for a long time. This forces all UWx Astrolabe decks into Bant+.

As others have noted, none of this is necessarily bad. Azorius Control was the "Best" control deck in Modern for years. Now this has shifted to Bant Snow, which is better than Azorious Control but still occupying the position of just a top control deck. Astrolabe is also enabling a variety of other strategies that simply did not exist in the past. None of this is inherently problematic. It's only a problem if it reduces diversity of other interactive/grindy options below what they were when it was just Azorius Control, and/or if the deck is taking up too much of a metagame share. This hasn't happened yet and we will struggle to even diagnose this until we get more events.
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Post by cfusionpm » 1 year ago

My personal problem isn't with Bant Snow being good, it's living with the constant fear and disarray between bans (like Astrolabe) and the planned obsolescence of extremely expensive Mythics (can't wait for the NEXT Uro that requires $300 for a playset, and makes any one of my other expensive staples effectively worthless!).

And much of this can be helped by a clear message and vision for the format from the top.

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Post by Simto » 1 year ago

That's a very valid concern, and Wizards have definitely showed that nothing is safe before... It's pretty brutal seeing a deck that's awesome become popular, strong and then get a ban because it's "too good". It's really %$#% lame, especially in a format where you can't exactly go out and buy a new deck very often.

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