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

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Guardman
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Post by Guardman » 4 months ago

EonAon wrote:
4 months ago
Guardman wrote:
4 months ago

I don't think he meant cutting Darksteel Citadel or the other artifact lands, but probably Blinkmoth Nexus or some non-land card. I also wouldn't be surprised if the deck doesn't want a full playset, but one or two maindeck as a good back-up plan for closing out the game.
Actually Blinkmoth is one of the more essential ways to win in the deck since you can animate then slide a plating or cyst to it if you can afford the mana. I agree that full playset of saga probably not a good thing but its probably a 3 off, maybe. You really want to see it somewhat early so that verse three is decently relevant but since on turn two it only consumes mana rather than give mana....
Just from watching the video, I think Blinkmoth Nexus is more of a metagame call. With a full set of Ornithopter and Thought Monitor the deck already has plenty of evasion. And most times Blinkmoth ended up not doing too much. Outside of the evasion, I think Urza's Saga does more. Early game it gets you some mana and tutors up an artifact. Late game it gives you two uncounterable constructs that will be pretty beefy.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

Where is this "all over the place" coming from? Because as the set is being more and more iterated Ragavan seems to be slotting in WAY more decks than Saga is. And Hexparasite is a cool idea, but it's maybe as a 1- or 2- of, the Urza lists that played it had only that as a relevant target; it is also extremely slow and fragile. It's also in - again - an artifact deck, not in "random" ones. The only "random" list from the last league data is the 8-rack one, the rest are either Amulet, Food or Artifact decks - no control lists are playing it.
While I agree about ragavan (stated as much above) 8Rack is as control as you get. The fact that 8rack can abuse Saga should tell you something about the types of decks that can run it effectively. I think any deck including eldrazi and even g-tron, that is trying to durdle around for a while, can look at Saga. People are really slow on the uptake on what this card can actually put on the board at the cost of very little deck real estate.
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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

The thing about Urza's Saga is that it's only really being seen in decks that play enough artifacts to fetch, play enough artifacts to make meaningful Constructs, or have silver bullets tutor targets. As a blue control player, I have exactly zero interest in this card. And it's because I don't want to cut cards I like in order to fit in clunky artifacts that otherwise do not synergize with the rest of the deck.

It could VERY MUCH be a problem in the certain decks that can abuse the it, but it's absolutely not a small package that can just slot into any deck and make it better. Without abuse/synergy, Saga is exceedingly mediocre.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
The thing about Urza's Saga is that it's only really being seen in decks that play enough artifacts to fetch, play enough artifacts to make meaningful Constructs, or have silver bullets tutor targets. As a blue control player, I have exactly zero interest in this card. And it's because I don't want to cut cards I like in order to fit in clunky artifacts that otherwise do not synergize with the rest of the deck.

It could VERY MUCH be a problem in the certain decks that can abuse the it, but it's absolutely not a small package that can just slot into any deck and make it better. Without abuse/synergy, Saga is exceedingly mediocre.
It actually is a small package you are just thinking about it in some sort of ALL IN design.

Hidden Style:
-4x misc lands
+3x Saga
+1x expidition map

Small footprint toolbox:
-4x misc lands
-2x gas / filter
+3x Saga
+1 Expedition Map
+1 Pithing Needle
+1 Tormod's Crypt

Committed to the Saga:
-4x misc lands
-3 gas / filter
+4x Saga
+2x Expedition Map
+1 Hexparasite
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Post by Aazadan » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
I'll hard pass on Urza's Saga. Even if it is just "good" and not "broken," you need a fair amount of additional artifacts in the deck to really make it worthwhile, especially since it's not an artifact itself. If I'm not playing other artifacts, there's no way I put this in anything, IMO. Even in something like Stoneblade, I feel like I would rather have Castle Ardenvale to make bodies and still cast my spells without needing to clutter my lists with mediocre artifacts.

If it ends up being a problem, it'll be because some heavy artifact deck is abusing it. Not because it could go in a bunch of decks.

Maybe I'm totally wrong, but it seems like stuff like Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer is way more versatile and universally good in any deck that can cast it. I don't think I've faced an Urza's Saga and ever felt like it was overwhelming, or even anything more than a minor annoyance. Monkey Pirate though? Kill on sight, or it takes over the game.
Seeing decks do well that are RUG and then splashing Lurrus off of Ragavan plus a watery grave and hallowed fountain has been nuts.

The card is DRS levels of value, and even has an absurd interaction with Blood Moon. Both with it and against it. I'm probably buying a play set but right now, the card is not ok.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

Yeah, I'm not sure I would break the bank on Ragavan, that card has ban list written all over it. Then again, it will take WOTC 3 months at least to even bother to look at it so maybe you can get you value out of the high price tag if you buy em now and go infinite in leagues.
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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
Hidden Style:
-4x misc lands
+3x Saga
+1x expidition map
What benefit is it for any deck to do this? Map is trash in any deck not fetching specific lands, and what good is a construct when it takes 2 mana and 2 turns to make a 1/1? Seems extremely.... mediocre. On top of that, you are trading lands which cast your spells into a land that disappears and doesn't produce colored mana. This is not free and many decks will want nothing to do with it. Same applies for most of the others. If you're not already playing silver bullet artifacts, there's no reason to put this in any deck. But maybe I'm just looking at this through a Cantrip/Cryptic mindset. Because in no universe would I cut any of my precious cards for this "meh" of a package.

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Post by Aazadan » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
Yeah, I'm not sure I would break the bank on Ragavan, that card has ban list written all over it. Then again, it will take WOTC 3 months at least to even bother to look at it so maybe you can get you value out of the high price tag if you buy em now and go infinite in leagues.
I play in paper, and only once a week at that (once Modern is a regular thing here again). Pretty sure there's no way to recoup the Ragavan costs if I buy them. Not ready to say it needs banned either, but out of all the cards in the meta as things currently stand I think Ragavan is closest, which says a lot given how not ok the food deck is.
cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
What benefit is it for any deck to do this? Map is trash in any deck not fetching specific lands, and what good is a construct when it takes 2 mana and 2 turns to make a 1/1? Seems extremely.... mediocre. On top of that, you are trading lands which cast your spells into a land that disappears and doesn't produce colored mana. This is not free and many decks will want nothing to do with it. Same applies for most of the others. If you're not already playing silver bullet artifacts, there's no reason to put this in any deck. But maybe I'm just looking at this through a Cantrip/Cryptic mindset. Because in no universe would I cut any of my precious cards for this "meh" of a package.
Assuming you haven't drawn any of this earlier, 2 Saga's, 1 Map, 1 Zuran Orb gives you plenty of lifegain to not die, and 4 5/5's over 5 turns, for 12 mana over those turns. Being a land makes it pretty safe to hold in hand to kick start the chain at a time when you're ready as well.

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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

12 mana to make four 5/5s over 5 turns (when they start as 1/1s, 2/2s, etc) is pitiful with the current power level of cards in Modern. If you're not recurring it, abusing it, or have bunches of incidental artifacts, this has no place in your deck. But I feel like I'm repeating myself, so I'll leave it at that. 🤷‍♂️

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Post by Hesperos » 4 months ago

I think Saga is underappreciated for control decks actually. It will close out the game fairly quickly, and on a different angle than the 'traditional' PW package. Saga is also disgusting with big Teferi. You can get a third golem out of each saga that way, or can effectively reduce the cost of the golem to 1.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
12 mana to make four 5/5s over 5 turns (when they start as 1/1s, 2/2s, etc) is pitiful with the current power level of cards in Modern. If you're not recurring it, abusing it, or have bunches of incidental artifacts, this has no place in your deck. But I feel like I'm repeating myself, so I'll leave it at that. 🤷‍♂️
In the Navy we call what you are doing "nuking it" aka over thinking it. I get that on paper it's hard to see the threat level of this package, but please keep your mind open for a sec. First off, and drill this into your mind, the package footprint is nearly invisible. The other part that doesn't jump off the theory sheet is how naturally these constructs start appearing once you have stabilized the board. Picture playing it on Turn 4, casting supreme verdict. Then turn 5 you hold mana for Cryptic and at end of turn you make a struct, make another struct when you untap and find a map. You havent over committed on any of these turns and you now have a mini construct army swinging. And what have you sacrificed in terms of deck space for this? Not much, it has a small footprint remember? These are low footprint threats that cannot be Thoughtseized or Counterspelled. If you are a real control player you should be very interested in these things just based on that alone.
Hesperos wrote:
4 months ago
I think Saga is underappreciated for control decks actually. It will close out the game fairly quickly, and on a different angle than the 'traditional' PW package. Saga is also disgusting with big Teferi. You can get a third golem out of each saga that way, or can effectively reduce the cost of the golem to 1.
Yes T5feri and T3feri can both synergize with Saga since Saga's are also enhchantments.
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Post by Tzoulis » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
In the Navy we call what you are doing "nuking it" aka over thinking it. I get that on paper it's hard to see the threat level of this package, but please keep your mind open for a sec. First off, and drill this into your mind, the package footprint is nearly invisible. The other part that doesn't jump off the theory sheet is how naturally these constructs start appearing once you have stabilized the board. Picture playing it on Turn 4, casting supreme verdict. Then turn 5 you hold mana for Cryptic and at end of turn you make a struct, make another struct when you untap and find a map. You havent over committed on any of these turns and you now have a mini construct army swinging. And what have you sacrificed in terms of deck space for this? Not much, it has a small footprint remember? These are low footprint threats that cannot be Thoughtseized or Counterspelled. If you are a real control player you should be very interested in these things just based on that alone.
You're evaluating the Saga ALWAYS on its best case scenarios; never on its medium or worst case scenarios.

You're losing the utility lands like Castle Ardenvale/Vantress and/or Field of Ruins. Also, you increase your chances of color/mana screwing yourself. And that's before we even factor in the cards such as Archmage's Charms or other good utility cards that you sacrifice in order to slide in subpar artifacts so you can utilize the Saga's 3rd chapter. Plus, you open yourself to Revoker and Pithing Needle shenanigans.

That's not an "invisible" footprint, that's a pretty massive footprint. They are also negligible threats, because in the decks that are (could be) relevant, they're mere speedbumps. If I'm getting Thougtseized or Counterspelled, i'd rather have lands that filter out the bad draws - see Castle Vantress, not a land that will go away and spit out, at best, 2 blockers, that can be ran over.

Hell, in your example, if you think that:

1. A 1/1 on T4 will help in any way whatsoever against Titan, Affinity, Blitz/Prowess, Humans, Rhinos, etc. you're mistaken; and
2. If you can tap 3 lands for a construct (1/1 if your earlier construct didn't survive, 3/3s if you fetch, most of the times, an irrelevant artifact) and then lose a land, and be ok then you're already ahead, else, going shields
down is asking for a beating.

Control no longer has a problem closing the game, 5 mana Teferi, Jace and Colonnade/Castle Ardenvale made sure of that, its problem is stabilizing against the hyper aggressive decks and being able to answer the combo decks and then close the game fast. Urza's Saga barely helps with the latter and it almost never helps with the former.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

I see there's no convincing you to at least TRY it before making decisions so I will just have to agree to disagree on the value of what you give up vs what you are gaining. I value the things I am gaining far more than the fractional sacrifices I lose. You value the things you would lose more. Fair enough.
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Post by Simto » 4 months ago

Pros and cons with both strategies. It just comes down to individual taste.

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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
I see there's no convincing you to at least TRY it before making decisions so I will just have to agree to disagree on the value of what you give up vs what you are gaining. I value the things I am gaining far more than the fractional sacrifices I lose. You value the things you would lose more. Fair enough.
saga.PNG
If you would like to send me 223 tix or 4 copies, I would be happy to try it out.

In no way will I spend that kind of money to put a card into a deck that doesn't want it.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
I see there's no convincing you to at least TRY it before making decisions so I will just have to agree to disagree on the value of what you give up vs what you are gaining. I value the things I am gaining far more than the fractional sacrifices I lose. You value the things you would lose more. Fair enough.
saga.PNG

If you would like to send me 223 tix or 4 copies, I would be happy to try it out.

In no way will I spend that kind of money to put a card into a deck that doesn't want it.
Add me online username Vizier. We can test whatever you want to test.
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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
I see there's no convincing you to at least TRY it before making decisions so I will just have to agree to disagree on the value of what you give up vs what you are gaining. I value the things I am gaining far more than the fractional sacrifices I lose. You value the things you would lose more. Fair enough.
saga.PNG

If you would like to send me 223 tix or 4 copies, I would be happy to try it out.

In no way will I spend that kind of money to put a card into a deck that doesn't want it.
Add me online username Vizier. We can test whatever you want to test.
While I appreciate the gesture, it was mostly made in jest. I don't have an interest in using the card whatsoever. Especially not when I'm on UR Murktide. And probably not even on UW Stoneblade either. I'm sure no deck trying to cast Counterspell, , Charm, , and Cryptic: wants a colorless land that doesn't synergize with the deck, doesn't cast any of my spells, and disappears after 3 turns.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

Ok then. Changing gears, you might like my Orzhov GRiefblade list. If you are looking for a low hanging fruit to just autowin matches without thinking that is.

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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

I won't like it, because I want to be casting Counterspell, Archmage's Charm, and Cryptic Command. :thinking: Bonus points for also including Snapcaster Mage and Lightning Bolt. :love: :party:

Winning is irrelevant if I don't enjoy playing the deck.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
I won't like it, because I want to be casting Counterspell, Archmage's Charm, and Cryptic Command. :thinking: Bonus points for also including Snapcaster Mage and Lightning Bolt. :love: :party:

Winning is irrelevant if I don't enjoy playing the deck.
I hear you but do you ever stop and correlate your love of said spells with your evaluation of cards' effectiveness? You've got a bit of a blue mage filter methinks hehe.
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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
I won't like it, because I want to be casting Counterspell, Archmage's Charm, and Cryptic Command. :thinking: Bonus points for also including Snapcaster Mage and Lightning Bolt. :love: :party:

Winning is irrelevant if I don't enjoy playing the deck.
I hear you but do you ever stop and correlate your love of said spells with your evaluation of cards' effectiveness? You've got a bit of a blue mage filter methinks hehe.
That is absolutely right! Which is why I am fighting back against the assumption that "any deck could easily fit in an Urza's Saga package, which would make the deck better as a result." It is very much not the case, and it just happens to be that the decks I want to play want absolutely nothing to do with either the card or its package. So I play devil's advocate in pointing out that not every deck wants it, and is not made better by adding it. :?
In decks that want it, can take advantage of it, or are playing a bunch of artifacts anyway, it's somewhere between "really good" to "busted." But that's very different from "universally good in any deck."

Edit: The irony here is the contrast with Pirate Monkey, which seems to excel well in any deck able to cast it. From red aggro to hard control. It's a fierce, self-contained snowball effect that needs to be dealt with. And if slots weren't so tight (and Monkey wasn't so expensive at $55 paper and 85 tix) I'd likely be trying it out myself.

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Post by robertleva » 4 months ago

cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
robertleva wrote:
4 months ago
cfusionpm wrote:
4 months ago
I won't like it, because I want to be casting Counterspell, Archmage's Charm, and Cryptic Command. :thinking: Bonus points for also including Snapcaster Mage and Lightning Bolt. :love: :party:

Winning is irrelevant if I don't enjoy playing the deck.
I hear you but do you ever stop and correlate your love of said spells with your evaluation of cards' effectiveness? You've got a bit of a blue mage filter methinks hehe.
That is absolutely right! Which is why I am fighting back against the assumption that "any deck could easily fit in an Urza's Saga package, which would make the deck better as a result." It is very much not the case, and it just happens to be that the decks I want to play want absolutely nothing to do with either the card or its package. So I play devil's advocate in pointing out that not every deck wants it, and is not made better by adding it. :?
In decks that want it, can take advantage of it, or are playing a bunch of artifacts anyway, it's somewhere between "really good" to "busted." But that's very different from "universally good in any deck."

Edit: The irony here is the contrast with Pirate Monkey, which seems to excel well in any deck able to cast it. From red aggro to hard control. It's a fierce, self-contained snowball effect that needs to be dealt with. And if slots weren't so tight (and Monkey wasn't so expensive at $55 paper and 85 tix) I'd likely be trying it out myself.
Oh for sure Monkey Opressor is the most obvious spammable and yes he is pushed to the point of banlist in the nearish future I think. Saga is certainly more subtle, and sure compared to Ragavan it's way less broad range in application. There is power in this card though. I think it has yet to be fully broken even.
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Post by cfusionpm » 4 months ago

I'm also obsessed with CS/Charm/Cryptic decks because I've been slowly dusting off some old friends, waiting for some new ones in the mail, patiently waiting my ability to play in paper FNMs again...

Numbers aren't final, but here's what's ready so far....

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Still waiting on 3x Murktides, third foil retro Charm, a few foil Expressive Iteration, and a borderless Subtlety which I haven't decided I want to actually slot in yet. So far, everything in the deck is a foil/promo except the Forces and Murktides.

https://imagizer.imageshack.com/img923/9001/P7mZwj.jpg
https://imagizer.imageshack.com/img923/3268/A5SYXC.jpg
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Post by drmarkb » 3 months ago

I am pretty convinced that in 6 months Saga will have left a building. Might be a Legacy.building, might be the Modern one, but it will go.
I suspect that Ragavan will not see any ban, but we may see Daze go in Legacy for its sins. In Modern it is no Gaak, I can't see it getting the hammer.....

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Post by cfusionpm » 3 months ago

drmarkb wrote:
3 months ago
I suspect that Ragavan will not see any ban, but we may see Daze go in Legacy for its sins. In Modern it is no Gaak, I can't see it getting the hammer.....
It's pretty gross dashed in with a T3feri on board. :?

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