R Koster's picture
By: R Koster, Rob Koster
Dec 09 2021 1:05pm

It’s been a while!

I’ve had very little time to play Magic recently. But my schedule should clear up a bit. Let’s see what’s going on in Modern.

If you haven’t been able to play as much as you used to, like me, this is a great time to hop back in. Some places in the world are finally opening up again, and there are some actual results to look at.

One of the first things I saw was that MTG Las Vegas happened and was won by Edwin Colleran on Rakdos Midrange.

Here is the list: 

Looking at that list, the first thing that I notice is that it’s a highly efficient Midrange deck with a power level that we could not have imagined being Modern legal a year ago. It’s a Rakdos deck, and even Lightning Bolt is barely making the cut at two copies in the 75. How the mighty have fallen.
One other thing that I notice is that there is a Chalice of the Void in the sideboard. This deck has four 0 mana cards and twenty one mana cards. What in the world is going on that this deck is playing Chalice of the Void. Hell, I would almost board in Chalice of the Void against this just a value-generating engine throughout the game. Just put the first one on one and the second one on two, and the game effectively ends. That Chalice looks super wild to me. I know they play three (Kolaghan’s Command), but you won’t convince me that Chalice is a weird add in this deck that is highly vulnerable to Chalice.

But looking around more decks, I see everyone is playing a million Chalice of the Void everywhere. Even the Control decks are just main decking 3-4 Chalice of the Void. What happened?!

After looking through a bunch of lists, I figured out what happened. Modern Horizons 2 made Modern “the 1 drop format”. One drops wholly decide everything. So we now live in a world blatantly dominated by one drops and 0 drops. 

 Luckily there have been some charming developments as well. I only need to look at the other Finals player from MTG Las Vegas for some spice.  

First thing I want to say: There are Remand in the top 8 of a Modern tournament again. Praise the sun! And not even one that was registered by accident. There are more Remand in this deck than there are Lightning Bolt. Which is a sentence I never thought I’d say. 

 For those who don’t know, this deck’s plan is to resolve Indomitable Creativity and cheat either an Emrakul, the Aeons Torn or a Serra’s Emissary into play. The rest of this deck looks like an oldskool Jeskai Control deck splashing for some Wrenn and Six. And who can blame them? That card is fantastic and does everything you could ever want from a card. 

 Another deck that I saw doing well at both the God of Modern tournament and MTG Las Vegas was Jund. But I didn’t even recognize it from the times of yore. According to the Knowledge Pool that is Reddit, we now have Boomer Jund and Zoomer Jund. I don’t particularly appreciate that there is only one letter of difference in the names, making it harder to scan deck names. I prefer something like LurrusSagaJund and OldsCoolJund. But I’ll work with it. 

You can tell from this decklist that this list is entirely different from Jund from a year ago. It’s very much still Jund. We have discard spells curving into the best threats the Jund colors can buy. But you know, Jund without Liliana of the Veil still feels wrong to me. But maybe I need to get over it because "oldskool" Jund was not pulling its weight in the winning department. I have been saying the deck is 40% against the field for years now. So I hate to say it, but it needed a very big revamp. And it got it, swinging it straight back to the top of the format.

So one of the conclusions I can draw between the Rakdos Midrange and the Jund decks doing very well for themselves is that Midrange is back on the menu for the first time in years. All it took was a little revamping and many Modern Horizons and Lurrus of the Dream-Den, but we got there. We have a Modern where Midrange is a viable option once more. But, again, it took years, but all good things require patience.

The final deck I want to touch is this blast from the past with a new coat of paint. 


 After seeing this list, I put it through a league because I think Infect should be a part of Modern. And on a pure power level, this is up there for a Modern deck. But good golly that Manabase is something spicy. I managed to get color screwed on both splashes throughout the league. But even despite that, the deck had a serious game every single match and felt like skating downhill on ice. You can go very fast, but you can fall hard. I love seeing Infect back, though. It’s like welcoming back an old friend that you haven’t seen in a long while.

So my first real look back has me thinking the form is vastly different from what it was, almost like a rotation happened. But we can play Jund, Jeskai, and Infect again. I’m okay with that!