UW Tron

In the spirit of the Modern Masters 2015 Grand Prix this weekend my pick of the week will be Modern! Today we’re going to examine Shintaro Ishimura’s UW Tron.

This deck is totally insane! Not only that, but I think it’s a great choice for the current Modern metagame and GP Charlotte. Everyone is really excited about the card Collected Company and playing a swarm strategy that starts out with Birds of Paradise or Elvish Mystic. These strategies are naturally very weak to Day of Judgment, Wrath of God, and Supreme Verdict. Not only does this deck feature all those cards, but it has even more sweepers in the form of Ugin, the Spirit Dragon and Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite.

The matchup against the popular Elf deck is a joke, not only do you have cheap counterspells and 4 Path to Exile but the Gifts Ungiven/Unburial Rites combo which means out of nowhere you can play a turn-4 Elesh Norn to kill all the creatures they were able to play or put Iona into play and make it so your opponent can’t cast another spell.

This deck is tailor-made to beat low-to-the-ground creature decks and it’s well positioned against the varied control decks of the format including Splinter Twin. Cheap counters, Path to Exile, and a nice mana advantage are good ways to out­-control the Twin deck. I could envision Blood Moon being an issue—but often just having a couple Signets is a fine way to beat it, the deck runs heaps of basic lands, and the sideboard contains two Celestial Purges and a Disenchant.

I’ve always thought that Tron was underrepresented in the current Modern metagame and that UW Tron has many of the same advantages of RG Tron without that all-in feel. You have more colored lands and more colored spells, better sideboard options, and interesting counterplay in the games. You have a chance to actually play when the opponent starts the game with a Blood Moon or a Stony Silence. I also love the Mindslaver lock that this deck is capable of, an extremely powerful engine that seems to have been forgotten about.

The Grixis Delver matchup is extremely close and I’ve been on the losing end of it most of the time. I like Celestial Purge as an answer to Gurmag Angler, Tasigur, and Young Pyromancer, but with so many reactive counterspells and situational removal I often just get trounced by a Delver of Secrets. I would recommend a couple copies of Sunlance if you’re looking to improve that matchup.

Owen Turtenwald

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