Century: Eastern Wonders
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Two Infect Builds You Haven't Seen

I like playing infect. It’s spicy and it was the cheap build in Modern years ago. Now, it’s just terrible, so my friends tell me, in Modern. As I played with Temur Infect, I felt that wasn’t the only option for this deck archetype. Since it’s “bad,” innovations are slowing down.

I won’t have it.

I have two decks today, one from a known associate and one I’ve been working on building on, like Ian, for a while.

Enjoy counting to ten.

Why play this build?

Because the explosive infect game plan is your favorite or you wish to build a rogue deck.

What differs?

Lost Leonin. A 2-power infect creature needs two instants to hit for ten poison counters. Adding in Ajani’s second ability is a full six infect without even a pump spell. Timing is hard, though a Planeswalker makes for a great target instead of your Noble Hierarch.

Solemnity. Like playing Melira, Sylvok Outcast in a local metagame where you have infect players, an enchantment is a silver bullet to infect decks with no answer to it.

What needs to be tested more?

I am unsure when to play two cards: Oath of Nissa and Mana Tithe.

Both cards are incredible in the deck and since both aren’t a full playset, I find myself casting them too late, waiting instead of aiding the engine before the need is dire.

What’s better about it?

Ajani is the real deal and cannot be understated with Oath of Nissa to smooth the mana cost while also providing additional infect threats later in the game. People have no idea Ajani is coming and you get surprise wins out of nowhere when he hits the board.

Rhonas's Monument is just so fun to play. People always have to read it, fearing the creature into pump spell to add +6 to a creature’s power with trample. That fear? That’s infect.

Rhonas's Monument

What’s worse about it?

It’s all in for fast. If you have a starting hand that is nearly perfect, it lacks the Blue to use Serum Visions or Opt to dig for your answer. Mutagenic Growth is not an auto include in infect. Here, it’s what wins most of the games, as Ajani on turn three means you’re out of mana and you need that +2/+2 for the double strike to matter.

What’s the trap?

There are 73 White instants that cost one mana in the modern format. By opening up the color, playing Path to Exile is a trap. I would also look at the other instants to see which are actually good enough to play. I’ve played with a few like Emerge Unscathed to protect against Jund.

Here’s a quick list of White, relevant to infect, cards that are always worth a look:

Any cards underperform?

I tried two, Travel Preparations and Oust. Both are fun tricks, and both are obviously too slow. A sorcery has to be back-breakingly good to be considered in Modern. They were fun to test though.

Why play this build?

Collected Company is a fun card to play, it turns out. You’re annoyed of Jund players hating out your ug Infect deck you built and it’s no longer good.

Collected Company by Franz Vohwinkel

What differs?

Rhonas's Monument is a weird Mono-Green build around me piece, as it both pumps and gives evasion to a creature of yours.

What needs to be tested more?

Putrefax. You need Rhonas's Monument out with the reduced cost to cast, but it with Become Immense is playing fun rogue deck Magic. They could be swapped with Rhonas the Indomitable, which provides extra evasion and pump.

Rhonas the Indomitable by Jack Wang


What’s better about it?

Resiliency. There is very little for discard decks to pull. You really going to force someone to discard a Rot Wolf? Why? Also, for removal heavy matchups like Jund, they definitely need board sweepers to deal with multiple infect creatures.

What’s worse about it?

With no pump, constantly needing creatures without a way to draw more cards means it’s slower, yet like bg infect, needs to mulligan less.

What’s the trap?

Playing to your Become Immense. You just need two infect creatures out, the traditional infect pump for a blowout win is less a concern here.

What’s this sideboard all about?

I don’t like playing affinity or robots or those artifact decks. Let’s keep them dead. Swapping in Reclamation Sage gives you more ways to stomp that deck.

Enjoy counting to ten!

— Mike

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