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5 Decks You Can't Miss This Week

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Five decks, five formats. From Standard to Vintage, there's something for everyone. Get ready to bring Vintage to a Standstill and unlock the Possibility Storm of Modern brewing because these are five decks (Plus a bonus sixth!) you don't want to miss!


We all know Chord of Calling is busted. It's part of the Birthing Pod engine that's dominated Modern for the last couple years, and was a player in Standard formats of Ravnica past. It's not so much a question of if Chord will impact this Standard format as much as it is a question of what decks it will be most powerful in. Todd Anderson thinks he has the answer:

Green-based devotion decks have been fringe players for the last few months, putting up occasional strong finishes, but mostly getting crushed by Lifebane Zombie and Supreme Verdict. Todd thinks that Chord of Calling and Nissa, Worldwaker are cards that can change this, and I'm inclined to believe him.

There have always been two big problems with this style of deck. First, the deck is very much reliant on Nykthos to have its most busted draws. Second, You run the risk of just not hitting the expensive payoff cards. Nissa and Chord both make strong contributions to solving these problems. Nissa doubles as an accelerant and a top end card that lets you interact while you dig for powerful plays to bury your opponent. Chord of Calling can find mana generators if you're stumbling, but is also a mana sink that lets you find powerful or utility singletons to blow games open. Now you have Reclamation Sage to deal with Detention Sphere and Banishing Light as well as Hornet Queen and Genesis Hydra to break open creature mirrors.

I'm excited to see what this deck can do. I don't know it it'll be the most powerful thing in the new Standard, but I think formats where Green creature decks are viable and powerful tend to be the healthiest.


There are a lot of Emrakul decks in Modern. Urza Tron, Through the Breach, Goryo's Vengeance, Summoning Trap - these are just the beginning. But a recent Japanese PTQ has showcased a new way to cheat Emrakul into play, and this week Adam Yurchick took the deck for a spin. Let's take a look at what Possibility Storm looks like in Modern.

So here's the combo. Counter and cantrip your way to five mana. Resolve Possibility Storm. Tutor up and cast Memnite with Tolaria West. Possibility Storm exiles Memnite and casts Emrakul, complete with an extra turn trigger.

Boom.

While Scapeshift may get credit for being the best underrated combo in Modern right now, this deck could begin catching up. With delaying cards such as Cryptic Command, Gigadrowse, and Remand this deck can slow the game down with the best of them, buying time to build the combo. Pulling tricks from the U/W/R Control through its sideboard, namely Threads of Disloyalty[card] and [card]Pyroclasm, it's easy to see how an absurd combo is demonstrating the possibilities of Modern.


When Tooth and Nail was reprinted in Modern Masters it filled greedy, combo-craving Commander players with glee. Ramping to nine mana and unleashing hell has been the swansong of many games but seeing it in action elsewhere has been sparse since its Standard heyday. Mr. Froggy means to change that:

Loading up Tooth and Nail for Legacy is a tall order, but Junk decks using hand disruption (Duress, Inquisition of Kozilek, and Hymn to Tourach) and powerful removal (see Swords to Plowshares and Pernicious Deed) have come in and out of vogue for years. Layering in a mana-ramp package built on Crop Rotation, Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, and Cabal Coffers goes over the top of the typical midrange strategy the colors bring. With Boseiju, Who Shelters All to ensure Tooth and Nail fires all that remains is to have creatures you want to cheat into play.

Using colorless creatures — Platinum Angel and Sundering Titan — means the same mana engine powering out Tooth and Nail can also hardcast the fatties for us. Of course, anything's possible when you're pulling the green version of Show and Tell so other choices may work better.


Vintage events are firing with some regularity on Magic Online, thanks to Vintage Masters's success, so the format's getting the attention and interest it's been missing for some time. While it's easy to think that every deck in Vintage has to start with a full suite of Power and doing something broken the format's for more diverse than that, as XShockWaveX's Vintage Daily Event deck shows:

This deck is pure control, and makes the too-powerful-for-Modern-and-Standard Counterspell tremble. With a full suite of Force of Wills, Mana Drains, Spell Pierces, and Mental Missteps at the ready, all backed by Null Rod and Lightning Bolt for things that so hit the battlefield, there's hardly anything an opponent could do without a fight. Using Standstill presents another wave of value for opponents to give up before even trying to break through the wall of counterspells, and Crucible of Worlds ensures that given enough time this deck will Strip Mine enemies dry.

How does it win? Jace, the Mind Sculptor obviously! Sticking Jace then Standstill means opponents will have to break from doing nothing, all while Jace is setting up a hand filled with answers before fatesealing away to his ultimate. If you ever wanted to relive the heyday of Draw-Go decks, it's alive and well in Vintage.


One of the most underrated (or overrated depending how your group's games play out) resources in Commander are lands. With everything from Sol Ring to Gilded Lotus available to players, putting humble Forests onto the battlefield often isn't sexy. Over on the official Commander forums, scatteredsun decided to put the fear of the land into others:

The goal of the deck is threefold:

  • Ramp into plenty of lands, particularly basic Forests
  • Set up plenty of Glorious Anthem-type effects with some protection in front
  • Cast Living Lands (or a similar effect) to commence beating down with oversized Forest creatures

While cards like Akroma's Memorial and Eldrazi Monument are well-known for their potency, combining Living Lands with Sacred Ground and Privileged Position ensures a nigh endless stream of animated bodies to throw at opponents. Using Karametra, God of Harvests as an indestructible way to tutor out lands becomes deadly serious as the game progresses. If you ever wanted to use a Forest to make opponents squirm uncomfortably, this is the deck that will do it.


Bonus: The Modern Deck with Magic 2015 LSV Would Play Today

In a blink-and-you-miss-it moment at the end of his weekly Top Decks column on MagicTheGathering.com, Pro Tour Hall of Fame player and Pro Tour mainstay Luis Scott-Vargas shared his Magic 2015-tweaked take on the best deck in Modern, Birthing Pod:

This isn't much different about this build compared to previous iterations, but there isn't much opportunity to truly innovate with such a well-explored deck. LSV swapped the new Reclamation Sage into the maindeck, ousting the previous incumbent Harmonic Sliver, allowing Qasali Pridemage to live in the sideboard and add another Grey Ogre-sized body to the mix. It isn't as flashy as the more Restoration Angel-focused builds, but he still recommends playing one here for value and surprise.

If you're collecting what you can for Modern at this weekend's Magic 2015 Prerelease events, both Chord of Calling and Reclamation Sage should be on your list. Get cracking and good luck!


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