Kumagoro42's picture
By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Jul 19 2022 11:55am

 Hello and welcome back to the State of Modern, our periodical 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.

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


 Here's the latest Modern events with at least 250 players or otherwise relevant for the meta, ordered chronologically. Find the archetypes below. With the sanitary situation normalized, the big Modern paper tournaments are firing again.

 April 9: SCG CON: Dallas ($30k)
 Players: 932
 Winner: Travis Brown with Puresteel Hammer
 Top 8: Puresteel Hammer, Elementals, Crashing Footfalls, Jund, Yorion Control, Crashing Footfalls, Puresteel Hammer, UW Control


 April 10: SCG CON: Dallas ($10k)
 Players: 289
 Winner: Steven Yean with Yawgmoth Chord
 Top 8: Yawgmoth Chord, Elementals, Crashing Footfalls, Crashing Footfalls, Amulet Titan, Yawgmoth Chord, Living End, Izzet Murktide


 May 7: Hareruya's 20th God of Modern
 Players: 252
 Winner: Yūta Takahashi with Izzet Murktide
 Top 8: Izzet Murktide, Yorion Control, Creativity, Tameshi Bloom, Yorion Control, Elementals, Amulet Titan, Goblins


 May 22: NRG Series Trial: Minneapolis
 Players: 302
 Winner: Will Kowalczyk with Amulet Titan
 Top 8: Amulet Titan, Izzet Murktide, Crashing Footfalls, RDW, Yorion Control, Yorion Control, Crashing Footfalls, Crashing Footfalls


 June 4: 4 Seasons Spring Bologna
 Players: 282
 Winner: Alessandro Parisi with Living End
 Top 8: Living End, Izzet Murktide, Amulet Titan, Elementals, Puresteel Hammer, Affinity, Izzet Murktide, UrzaTron


 June 11: NRG Series Trial: Lansing
 Players: 315
 Winner: Josh Warsaw with Yorion Control
 Top 8: Yorion Control, Yorion Control, Yorion Control, Izzet Murktide, Puresteel Hammer, Living End, Izzet Murktide, UrzaTron


 June 25: Campeonato de España
 Players: 180
 Winner: Francisco Sanchez with Izzet Murktide
 Top 8: Izzet Murktide, UrzaTron, Yorion Control, Yawgmoth Chord, Yorion Control, Crashing Footfalls, Puresteel Paladin, Izzet Murktide

 July 9: SCG CON: Syracuse ($30k)
 Players: 384
 Winner: Jiang Yicheng with Yorion Control
 Top 8: Yorion Control, Izzet Murktide, Living End, Golgari Food, Amulet Titan, Burn, EldraTron, Puresteel Hammer


 Already covered: 4-Color RampAd NauseamAffinity (update), Allosaurus Combo, Azorius ControlBant AggroBant ControlBogleBlue MoonBloomless Titan (aka Amulet Titan), Bridgevine (banned, update: Crabvine), BurnCollected Chord (aka Creatures Toolbox), Crashing Footfalls (aka Temur Rhinos), CreativityCreatures Toolbox: Heliod (aka Heliod Life aka Heliod Company), Creatures Toolbox: Lurrus, Creatures Toolbox: Yawgmoth (aka Yawgmoth Chord), Death's Shadow (update), Dredge (update), Eldrazi Aggro, Eldrazi & TaxesEldraTron, ElementalsElves, Equipment StormFaeriesGifts Control, Goblins, Green Devotion Prison (banned), Grixis Control, Gruul AggroGruul UtopiaHardened ModularHatebears, Hogaak DredgeHollow OneHumans, Infect, Instant Reanimator, Izzet Aggro (aka Izzet Delver), Izzet MurktideIzzet Phoenix (update), Izzet Pyromancer, Jeskai BreachJeskai MiraclesJund (also feat. Wrenn and Six), Junk, KCI (banned), Landless CharbelcherLandless SpyLantern Control, LanternlessLiving EndMadcap Gruul, Mardu Pyromancer, Martyr LifeMerfolk, Nahiri Control, Naya Burn, Niv-Mizzet Reborn, Orzhov EphemeratePhoenix Deck Wins, Phoenix Wrenn and SixPonza (update: Prison Ponza aka Gruul Karn), Puresteel HammerPyro Prison, Rakdos Aggro (MH2 update), Rakdos MidrangeRDW, Saheeli Evolution, Scapeshift ControlSelesnya Value, Simic FieldSkred Red, Spirit Aggro, StonebladeStorm, Temur ReclamationTezzeratorThe Rock, Titan BreachTokensTwinless Exarch, Urza EmryUrza FoodUrza Foundry (aka Whirza), Urza Outcome, Urza's Kitchen (aka Grixis Food), UrzaTronValakut (aka TitanShift), Valakut Control, Valki Cascade (obsoleted), Vannifar PodWalks, Winota Colossification, Yorion Control.

 Update: More than one year since its release, Modern Horizons 2 is still by far the most influential set in the Modern meta, with its predecessor as the runner-up. For better or for worse, the format has now settled into a dynamic where it gets shaken up once every other year – or whichever interval is going to exist in between one "straight to Modern" product and the next – and after all the archetypes old and new are done being redefined, a period follows in which the meta remains in a holding pattern. That's what 2022 in Modern looks like so far. Only one card was banned during the year, none since March, and the overall impact of the premier sets has been generally weak. A few cards from Neon Dynasty have breached into the meta, mostly the channel lands, plus March of Otherworldly Light as a flexible piece of removal. On the other hand, Streets of New Capenna has come and gone without much of an impression. After all, Modern is now closer in size to the Eternal formats than it is to any of the smaller formats, so it's difficult for cards designed in large part for Standard and Limited to be able to exert much weight on its pool.


 Some decks are currently in a position of prominence in the meta, with Izzet Murktide in particular claiming an impressive 13% share to its name at the moment of writing. But old, immutable archetypes like UrzaTron and Amulet Titan still place in the Top 8 of major events, and they aren't going anywhere anytime soon – Modern is just resilient that way.

 A major archetype we haven't checked on in more than two years is the so-called Yorion Control. Contemporary versions have forcedly changed their lineup in significant ways, due to the banning of two of its previous role players, namely Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath and Arcum's Astrolabe.


 Notorious centerpiece Omnath, Locus of Creation is still the main reason to go four colors, and the strategy still hinges on using a lot of cantripping permanents to abuse when Yorion comes out of the sideboard. Not all lists dip into an aggro-oriented haymaker like Ragavan, but Emrakul, the Promised End is a popular inclusion that makes a lot sense: the deck is bound to end up with an easy five or six different card types in the graveyard soon enough, what with all its evoke creatures, consumable planeswalkers, and even "temporary" enchantments like Dress Down.


 A combo list that emerged from the odd Neon Dynasty card is called Tameshi Bloom, or Tameshi Wargate. It's centered around the namesake Tameshi, Reality Architect – which is appropriate, since he's the instigator of the set's whole narrative.


 The plan is to fetch a Lotus Bloom with Wargate, ideally on turn three, then use it to cast Tameshi, who can return it to the battlefield for just one mana, again and again. The mana we net in the process can be used to pay for Cultivator Colossus, which lets us drop back onto the battlefield all the lands Tameshi bounced to our hand; the process will also dig into our library for a game-ending copy of Finale of Devastation. It's cheeky little combo routine that's been up-and-coming in the past few months. One interesting aspect of these many-colored builds that have enjoyed a fair amount of success lately (we can see how Omnath itself is part of the team here, too) is that they all incorporate creature-tutoring effects like the old-school Eladramri's Call, which was brought into the format by the original Modern Horizons. It's done for consistency, but it has the side effects of encouraging the use of silver bullets, both maindeck and off the sideboard.


 Let's end this summer tour by celebrating the return to the higher echelons of the meta of eccentric chef Asmor and her controversial Underworld Cookbook. Last time we met her, she was sharing her kitchen with the likes of Urza and Emry. Now she dropped the blue entirely, forming what we can't call in any other way but Golgari Food.


 Last revised: March 7, 2022 (banned: Lurrus of the Dream-Den)

 Total banned cards: 47

 By Color: 

  • White: 2 (of which 1 Orzhov)
  • Blue: 8 (of which 2 Simic)
  • Black: 5 (of which 2 Golgari, 1 Orhov)
  • Red: 8
  • Green: 11 (of which 2 Golgari, 2 Simic)
  • Colorless: 18 (of which 10 lands)
  • Multicolored: 4 (of which 2 Golgari, 2 Simic)

 By Type: 

  • Creature: 6
  • Land: 10
  • Artifact: 9
  • Enchantment: 2
  • Planeswalker: 1
  • Instant: 9
  • Sorcery: 10

 By Set:

  • Core Sets: 3 (of which 1 from 9th Edition, originally from Visions, 1 from Magic 2011, 1 from Core Set 2020)
  • Modern Horizons: 2
  • Mirrodin block: 12 (of which 9 from Mirrodin, 2 from Darksteel, 1 from Fifth Dawn)
  • 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: 4 (of which 2 from Time Spiral, 1 from Planar Chaos, 1 from Future Sight)
  • Lorwyn block: 1 (from Lorwyn)
  • Alara block: 0
  • Zendikar block: 3 (of which 1 from Zendikar, 1 from Worldwake, 1 from Rise of the Eldrazi)
  • Scars of Mirrodin block: 5 (of which 1 from Scars of Mirrodin, 1 from Mirrodin Besieged, 3 from New Phyrexia)
  • Innistrad block: 1 (of which 1 from Dark Ascension)
  • 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: 6 (of which 3 from Throne of Eldraine, 1 from Theros Beyond Death, 1 from Ikoria, 1 from Kaldheim