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Shifting Strategies


We're a few weeks into the new world of Jace, The Mind Sculptor and Bloodbraid Elf, and players are still finding innovative ways to utilize these two new cards. While some shells were fairly obvious, others are new and exciting, giving new angles of attack to fixtures of the format and new decks alike. Today, let's take a look at the latest skeleton that Bloodbraid Elf has been slotted into:

This is the rg Primeval Titan/Scapeshift deck that we're used to seeing in Modern. Does it really need Bloodbraid Elf just because it's on-color? It turns out that Bloodbraid Elf adds an important element to this deck and has cascading impacts on your card selection. Think of Bloodbraid Elf's baseline as being a Solemn Simulacrum. Except that the Solemn Simulacrum is a 3/2 with haste your opponent is going to struggle to answer both the ramp half and the creature half of the spell.

Additionally, Bloodbraid Elf lets you be a little more aggressive against decks that aren't going to do anything, and each hit from Bloodbraid Elf is one fewer Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle trigger you need to actually kill your opponent. Against aggressive decks, it gives you a means of stabilizing the board while ramping up towards your end game or giving you a chance to hit cards like Lightning Bolt and Slagstorm. You can even Summoner's Pact for Bloodbraid Elf in the midgame if things aren't going quite as planned and you need to make a play.

All in all, Bloodbraid Elf adds an exciting new dimension to this deck in a way that cards like Wood Elves, Growth Spasm, and Tireless Tracker don't. Not only is Bloodbraid Elf a high impact card regardless of what it hits, there's an immediacy and consistency to its impact on the game that just isn't there for your other options.

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