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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Jun 05 2018 12:00pm
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 Hello and welcome back to the State of Modern, our monthly rendez-vous with all things Modern, including big tournament reports, the decklists and prices for the archetypes that are currently the most successful in the meta, and an up-to-date ban list. If you never tried your hand at Modern, this is the right place to know everything you need to know in order to begin; and if you're already into it, it can still be a good way to make sure you know everything that's happening in the format. And by the way, if you seek a nice free online tournament, I run Modern Times every Thursday at 7:00 PM UTC.

 The series archive is here.
 Let's start a new ride!


 THE BIG EVENTS

 Here's the latest Modern events with more than 200 players, ordered chronologically. Find the archetypes below.

 May 5: StarCityGames Team Constructed Open: Baltimore (Team of three playing each a different format)
 Players: 774
 Winner: Alexander Ferzola with Humans (teammates: James Lu playing Standard, Roshen Eapen playing Legacy)
 Top 8: Humans, Elves, Selesnya Value, UW Control, UWr Control, Hollow One, Instant Reanimator, UW Control

Pictured: Lu on the left, Eapen at the center, Ferzola on the right.

 May 6: StarCityGames Modern Classic: Baltimore
 Players: 230
 Winner: Roger Carroll with Humans
 Top 8: Humans, Affinity, Valakut, UrzaTron, Affinity, Hollow One, Valakut, Humans

 May 19: StarCityGames Modern Open: Louisville
 Players: 663
 Winner: Marshall Arthurs with Mardu Pyromancer
 Top 8: Mardu Pyromancer, UWr Control, Bogle, UW Control, Humans, Jund, Jund, Storm

 May 19: MKM Series: Hamburg
 Players: 393
 Winner: Nicklas Krull with Gifts Control
 Top 8: Gifts Control, Jund, Instant Reanimator, UrzaTron, Creatures Toolbox, Eldrazi Aggro, Ponza, UW Control

 May 20: Grand Prix Toronto 2018: Team Trios (Team of three playing each a different format)
 Players: 389
 Winner: Chris Harabas with Humans (teammates: Morgan McLaughlin playing Standard, Lucas Siow playing Legacy)
 Top 4: Humans, UWr Control, Mardu Pyromancer, Hollow One

Pictured: McLaughlin on the left, Siow at the center, Harabas on the right.

 May 26: StarCityGames Modern Open: Minneapolis
 Players: 783
 Winner: Sam Cocchiarella with Humans
 Top 8: Humans, UWr Control, Jund, EldraTron, UWr Control, Humans, Burn, Affinity

 May 29: MTGO Modern PTQ
 Players: 382
 Winner: Wuzlking with UrzaTron
 Top 8: UrzaTron, UW Control, Bant Collected, UrzaTron, Affinity, Blue Moon, Hatebears, Selesnya Value


 THE MODERN META

 Already covered: Ad NauseamAffinity, BogleBlue MoonBloomless TitanBurnCollected Chord (aka Creatures Toolbox), Death's Shadow, DredgeEldrazi Aggro, EldraTron, Elves, Grixis ControlHatebears, Hollow OneHumans, Infect, Instant Reanimator, JundJunk (aka The Rock), KCILantern Control, Living EndMadcap GruulMerfolk, Nahiri Control, PonzaRDWStorm, Tezzerator, Twinless ExarchUrzaTronUW ControlValakut (aka TitanShift), Valakut Control.

 Update: The Humans era is still in full swing, with the archetype reaching 10% of the meta in May, and winning a whopping four out of the seven biggest tournaments, while placing decks almost everywhere. Should it grow further, will it be stopped?

 Among the other major archetypes, UW Control (either in the original or the Jeskai variety) confirms to be the deck for all seasons, amounting to 10 Top-8 placements in the big events; still strong also UrzaTron/EldraTron (5 placements), Affinity and Jund (4 placements each). Meta is still varied, anyway, with 21 different archetypes placing decks in the Top 8 of these main events, which become even more if you count separately similar archetypes like the two flavors of Tron.

 Here's some more top decks in the current meta.


 Price (online): $526.46 

 Colors: Selesnya (GW)

 How does it work: A cousin of Creatures Toolbox, Selesnya Value (also known with the not particularly creative name of Selesnya Aggro) doesn't attempt any endgame combo, turning down more direct creature fetchers and relying on Collected Company only as an accelerator. The spearheads of the deck are the two land-based wonders Knight of the Reliquary and Tireless Tracker, aided in their business by Azusa, Lost But Seeking or Ramunap Excavator (or both) and abetted by Courser of Kruphix. The presence of 28 maindeck creatures means including Worship sounds like a pretty good idea, while Selesnya aggro decks can't help but inviting Voice of Resurgence on board. The mana base is tailored for the Knight, with Gavony Township as the final target.

 Results: It's solid and it's getting there, plays more easily than Creatures Toolbox, of which renounces all the intricacies, and is currently positioned at a flattering 2% of the meta.


 Price (online): $607.18 

 Colors: Mardu (WBR)

 How does it work: Young Pyromancer decks are among the most widely played of the game, crossing over to Legacy and even Vintage. The Elemental daddy is usually accompanied by the equally non-permanent lover Delver of Secrets, but the Modern version, also called Mardu Midrange, dispenses with the Insectile Aberration and instead it's lately fond of Bedlam Reveler, which the deck easily plays as a 3/4 prowess for 2 that draws you three cards. The rest is mostly control, burn and disruption elements, all fueling the Pyromancer, with Lingering Souls for extra punch and Blood Moon as the ultimate board hoser. (Kamba, Consul of Allocation) is an interesting sideboard card for mirror matches.

 Results: It's growing fast lately, winning SCG: Louisville and placing consistently on the upper echelon of major events, thus conquering a good 3% of the meta.


 Price (online): $412.60 

 Colors: Esper (WUB)

 How does it work: Gifts Ungiven has always been a fascinating card, and in Modern it's appeared as a centerpiece of fun tier-2/tier-3 control decks since forever. Jace, the Mind Sculptor (but also Teferi, Hero of Dominaria and Search for Azcanta) might now propel these decks into bigger prominence. They feature all the trappings of UW Control, but the nature itself of Gifts Ungiven pushes the deckbuilders to diversify their suites to the extreme, with a sideboard that almost looks like Singleton. The main endgame trick involves turning the signature spell into a more powerful Buried Alive by gifting only two cards, Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite and the Unburial Rites to resurrect her with, thanks to flashback. Failing that, there's always Celestial Colonnade and Creeping Tar Pit.

 Results: It's certainly not a vast presence in the meta, but it's at least back to being a presence nonetheless.


 THE MODERN BAN LIST

 Last revised: February 12, 2018 (unbanned: Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Bloodbraid Elf)
 Next announcement: July 2, 2018

 Total banned cards: 33

 By Color: 

  • White: 2
  • Blue: 6
  • Black: 2 (of which 1 Golgari)
  • Red: 5
  • Green: 7 (of which 1 Golgari)
  • Colorless: 12
  • Multicolored: 1 (of which 1 Golgari)

 By Type: 

  • Creature: 3
  • Land: 8
  • Artifact: 5
  • Enchantment: 1
  • Planeswalker: 0
  • Instant: 7
  • Sorcery: 9

 By Set:

  • Core Sets: 2 (of which 1 from 9th Edition, originally from Visions, and 1 from Magic 2011)
  • Mirrodin block: 10 (of which 9 from Mirrodin, 1 from Darksteel)
  • Kamigawa block: 4 (of which 2 from Champions of Kamigawa, 2 from Betrayers of Kamigawa)
  • Ravnica block: 1 (from Ravnica)
  • Ice Age block: 2 (both from Coldsnap)
  • Time Spiral block: 2 (both from Time Spiral)
  • Lorwyn block: 1 (from Lorwyn)
  • Alara block: 0
  • Zendikar block: 4 (of which 1 from Zendikar, 2 from Worldwake, 1 from Rise of the Eldrazi)
  • Scars of Mirrodin block: 4 (of which 1 from Mirrodin Besieged, 3 from New Phyrexia)
  • Innistrad block: 0
  • Return to Ravnica block: 1 (from Return to Ravnica)
  • Theros block: 0
  • Khans of Tarkir block: 2 (both from Khans of Tarkir)
  • Battle for Zendikar block: 0
  • Shadows over Innistrad block: 0
  • Kaladesh block: 0
  • Amonkhet block: 0
  • Ixalan block: 0
  • Three-and-One Sets: 0

 See you next month, when we'll keep exploring the Modern meta. In the meantime, don't be ancient, play Modern!