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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Oct 08 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!


 Here's the latest Modern events with at least 200 players, ordered chronologically. Find the archetypes below. Very busy month, ten major events!

 September 2: MTGO Modern PTQ
 Players: 391
 Winner: jhacer1 with UW Control
 Top 8: UW Control, Burn, Hardened Modular, UW Control, Ad Nauseam, Spirit Aggro, Hardened Modular, Jund

 September 8: MKM Series Paris 2018
 Players: 302
 Winner: Thomas Mechin with UW Control
 Top 8: UW Control, UW Control, Burn, Jund, Humans, UW Control, Storm, UW Control

 September 9: Roma Modern Cup at Nationals 2018
 Players: 279
 Winner: Adriano Moscato with Humans
 Top 8: Humans, Humans, Dredge, Humans, Hollow One, Humans, KCI, UW Control

This picture of Moscato is from MKM Series Rome 2018.

 September 9: Grand Prix Detroit 2018 (team unified event)
 Players: 532
 Winner: William Courson with Humans, Andrew "Koko" Lopez with UWr Control, Antonio Perez with UrzaTron
 Top 4: Humans/UWr Control/UrzaTron, Spirit Aggro/Hardened Modular/Hollow One, Humans/UW Control/Valakut, Infect/Mardu Pyromancer/UW Control

Pictured: Courson on the left, Lopez at the center, Perez on the right.

 September 9: MTGO Modern PTQ
 Players: 354
 Winner: Gobo2009 with Martyr Life
 Top 8: Martyr Life, Bloomless Titan, Burn, UW Control, Burn, Creatures Toolbox, Hardened Modular, Hardened Modular

 September 16: StarCityGames Open: Syracuse
 Players: 777
 Winner: Benjamin Lao with Living End
 Top 8: Living End, Humans, Humans, RDW, Burn, Hardened Modular, Storm, UW Control

 September 16: StarCityGames Modern Classic: Syracuse
 Players: 200
 Winner: Joseph Terino with Burn
 Top 8: Burn, UW Control, Hardened Modular, UrzaTron, Burn, Burn, Burn, KCI

 September 16: Grand Prix Stockholm 2018
 Players: 1322
 Winner: OndÅ™ej Stráský with Spirit Aggro
 Top 8: Spirit Aggro, UW Control, Spirit Aggro, UWr Control, Martyr Life, Storm, UW Control, UW Control

 September 16: Grand Prix Hong Kong 2018
 Players: 908
 Winner: Xu Fei with UrzaTron
 Top 8: UrzaTron, Bridgevine, Jeskai Miracles, Jeskai Tempo, Humans, Humans, Jund, RDW

 September 17: MTGO Modern PTQ
 Players: 343
 Winner: Joey9fingas with Hollow One
 Top 8: Hollow One, Bridgevine, Ad Nauseam, Storm, Valakut, RDW, RDW, UW Control


 Already covered: Ad NauseamAffinity, BogleBlue MoonBloomless TitanBurnCollected Chord (aka Creatures Toolbox), Death's Shadow, DredgeEldrazi Aggro, EldraTron, Elves, Gifts ControlGrixis Control, Hardened ModularHatebears, Hollow OneHumans, Infect, Instant Reanimator, JundJunk (aka The Rock), KCILantern Control, Living EndMadcap Gruul, Mardu Pyromancer, Martyr LifeMerfolk, Nahiri Control, PonzaRDW, Saheeli EvolutionSelesnya Value, Skred Red, Spirit AggroStorm, Tezzerator, Twinless ExarchUrzaTronUW ControlValakut (aka TitanShift), Valakut Control, Walks.

 Update: September saw ten major tournaments took place in the space of just two weeks, with two Grand Prixes held on the same weekend (September 15-16). Amidst such maelstrom of crucial results, did the meta move at all? Not significantly, but some positions have been reinforced. Humans and UW Control are still the deck to beat in the aggro and combo category, with RDW and UrzaTron as their most direct runner-ups (though under the RDW label are conflates the results of Burn, too, and they're not exactly the same deck). In the combo corner, which is shrinking (more than half of the Modern meta is now dominated by aggro builds), Dredge had a comeback thanks to a new variant, Bridgevine, featured below.

 Due to local preferences and the work of strong, committed team, some lists particularly shined at specific events, with UW Control scoring four Top-8 placements at MKM Paris, including the first two spots, and Humans doing exactly the same at Rome Nationals, while Burn also had a first place and three other placements at Syracuse's SCG Classic. Taking half the top spots at Grand Prix Stockholm, too, UW Control is definitely the month's biggest winner. It's also spawning slight variants, like Jeskai Miracles, the other decklist we're featuring in this installment.

 Here's another emerging tech: Valakut decks using Bring to Light to both fetch and pay for Scapeshift. We could see it happen, for instance, on this Modern PTQ online. Branching into blue gives Valakut builds other useful tools, like Search for Azcanta, Worldly Counsel and of course Remand.


 Price (online): $331.25

 Colors: Rakdos (BR), Vengevine can't be hardcast

 How does it work: Bridgevine is not really a combo deck the way classic Dredge decks feel like; it's more of an aggro build where your large mass of creatures doesn't come from your hand but from other zones, most notably the graveyard. You discard your recursive team of Bloodghast, Gravecrawler, Vengevine and of course (Bridge of Below) to (Stitcher's Supplier), Insolent Neonate, Faithless Looting and (in some lists) Collective Brutality, plus Lightning Axe if needed. The combo-ish interaction is Greater Gargadon sacrificing a bunch of recursion-prone stuff, and Hangarback Walker, to reach the battlefield faster, while creating Zombie tokens that in turn will help Gravecrawler to come back. The quantity of one-mana creatures, which include the Walker and Walking Ballista, are also the key to Vengevine's coming.

 Results: Almost singlehandedly bringing Dredge strategies back to the foreground! Though I'm sure the Golgari from Guilds of Ravnica and beyond are going to help.


 Price (online): $596.77

 Colors: Jeskai (WUR)

 How does it work: Jeskai Miracles is essentially a UWr Control build exploiting Jace, the Mind Sculptor's Brainstorm ability to place Terminus on the top of the library, triggering its miracle mechanic. It makes it better in a number of aggro matchups, like against Living End or the abovementioned Bridgevine. The wincon is Celestial Colonnade, or just achieving total board dominance via (Teferi, Hero of Dominaria)'s ultimate.

 Results: It's statistically conflated with all the other UW Control lists, so great results for sure, even if it's not one of the most played variants.


 Last revised: February 12, 2018 (unbanned: Jace, the Mind Sculptor, Bloodbraid Elf)
 Next announcement: November 26, 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!