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Woo Brews – Cheap Modern Toys

Modern is my favorite format right now. By far.

Why?

Well, it’s extremely open to brewing compared to the alternatives. There are a ton of options in the top tier, and a ton of options in the second tier. If we’re willing to take a step down to “semi-competitive,” the whole world opens up.

The baseline speed of the format is a bit slow with “turn 4” combo decks. The baseline power of the format is a bit low with few “must play” cards for decks of a particular color. This means there is plenty of room to negotiate for low-demand/high-supply lost and undiscovered gems. It’s really a brewer’s paradise.

Standard is bogged down in mythic-rare-requiring devotion battles, and Legacy is a cost and brew prohibitive repetition of [card]Brainstorm[/card], fetch, crack, Brainstorm, fetch, crack. Now, if you must play in tournaments, you must play in tournaments. But for a majority Magic Online player like myself who plays strictly for the sake of playing, Modern is where it’s at.

Cheap Modern Toys

Today I’ll be looking at my top recommended entry points into Modern. These decks are cheap, fun, and semi-competitive. They are different and refreshing. Most importantly, they have kept me entertained. We’re talking bang for buck.

Cheap Laughs

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The first deck is a mono-red storm combo deck that kills with [card]Flame Jab[/card]/[card]Worldfire[/card]. This deck costs barely anything, has kept me entertained 6 consecutive nights, and it wins a fair amount.

The deck is extremely volatile, as neither a turn 3 kill or a turn 6 still-nothing are particularly uncommon. As such, it can beat anything, and it can lose to anything.

Worldfire Storm

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[deck]19 Mountain
4 Pyromancer Ascension
4 Faithless Looting
4 Wild Guess
4 Reforge the Soul
4 Pyretic Ritual
4 Desperate Ritual
4 Manamorphose
1 Past in Flames
4 Spellweaver Helix
4 Flame Jab
4 Worldfire[/deck]

The deck is designed to abuse [card]Pyromancer Ascension[/card]. We churn through our deck and put counters on our Ascension with [card]Faithless Looting[/card], [card]Wild Guess[/card], and [card]Reforge the Soul[/card]. Once we have counters on our Ascension, our draw spells double, and we can stack mana with [card]Manamorphose[/card] and our ritual suite. From there, we can win any way we want to. And what’s funnier than [card]Worldfire[/card]?

Once we have a [card]Worldfire[/card] and a [card]Flame Jab[/card] in the graveyard, [card]Spellweaver Helix[/card] makes it so our next [card]Flame Jab[/card] is a hilarious lethal karate kick to the opponent’s face.

So why [card]Worldfire[/card]? First, obviously, is the humor. C’mon. But secondly, there is a strategic motive here. Our demonstrated kill uses no creatures and relies heavily upon artifacts, enchantments, and the graveyard. This allows us to transform after sideboarding.

Worldfire Storm Sideboarded

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[deck]19 Mountain
4 Pyromancer Ascension
4 Faithless Looting
4 Wild Guess
4 Reforge the Soul
4 Pyretic Ritual
4 Desperate Ritual
4 Manamorphose
1 Past in Flames
4 Empty the Warrens
4 Young Pyromancer
4 Goblin Bushwhacker[/deck]

Here we have a much more consistent and resilient deck than we had in the first game. However, I think this is a good way to win the match. In the first game we dodge creature kill, now our [card]Young Pyromancer[/card]s run wild.

It’s a satisfying and effective juke. I highly recommend it, and a recipe for some cheap laughs.

Cheap Fun

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Now we have the budget version of the Forgemaster combo deck I’ve been working on. This deck is extremely fast and gratifying. It can send hasty [card blightsteel colossus]Blightsteels[/card] through on the third turn and hardcast all kinds of fatties. The deck also plays a lot of rares, but these rares happen to have zero demand and can be acquired with ease.

The deck may actually be more consistent than even non-budget versions of Forgemaster combo, although it loses out on the protection and interaction of cards like [card]Thoughtseize[/card] and [card]Spellskite[/card]. That’s okay. These cards aren’t that fun anyways.

Tron Forgemaster

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[deck]1 Island
4 Tolaria West
1 Academy Ruins
4 Darksteel Citadel
4 Urza’s Mine
4 Urza’s Power Plant
4 Urza’s Tower
4 Expedition Map
4 Lightning Greaves
4 Simic Signet
4 Izzet Signet
4 Dimir Signet
3 Treasure Mage
4 Master Transmuter
4 Kuldotha Forgemaster
1 Mindslaver
1 Wurmcoil Engine
2 Myr Battlesphere
1 Platinum Angel
1 Spine of Ish Sah
1 Blightsteel Colossus[/deck]

This deck is good at making mana. It can quickly assemble Urzatron off of [card]Expedition Map[/card] and [card]Tolaria West[/card]. It can also ramp hard with 12 Signets. That’s a lot of mana!

From there, a [card]Lightning Greaves[/card] with [card]Master Transmuter[/card] or [card]Kuldotha Forgemaster[/card] can make short work of the opponent. [card]Treasure Mage[/card] can find a variety of toys like [card]Mindslaver[/card], [card]Wurmcoil Engine[/card], [card]Myr Battlesphere[/card], [card]Platinum Angel[/card], [card]Spine of Ish Sah[/card], and [card]Blightsteel Colossus[/card]. Take your pick, and drop it into play.

There is something about producing absurd amounts of mana and slamming giant artifact monsters that just does not get old. I highly recommend this deck. It’s guaranteed cheap fun.

Cheap Wins

Next up we have the budget version of Living End. This is the deck I recommend to the aspiring Grand Prix or PTQ grinders—the eventual Pro Tour Players. Living End began as a brew but is now an established force of the Modern metagame, after taking two of the Top 8 slots in the last major Modern event. A budget version of the deck is a good starting point that will eventually lead to a completed top tier deck.

A budget version of this deck easily be assembled without giving up too much consistency or power. Sacrifices must be made, swapping [card]Avalanche Riders[/card] in for [card]Fulminator Mage[/card] and making do with whatever lands we have at our disposal. Some of the time this will come back to bite us, but most of the time it will not, and we have a top tier deck on the cheap.

The deck is also splashy and grindy while being something completely different. I have been playing the deck since winter of 2009 and still find enjoyment in playing it. That’s shelf life.

Budget Living End

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[deck]19 Lands
1 Dryad Arbor
3 Living End
4 Demonic Dread
3 Beast Within
4 Violent Outburst
3 Avalanche Riders
4 Deadshot Minotaur
4 Monstrous Carabid
4 Street Wraith
3 Igneous Pouncer
4 Valley Rannet
4 Jungle Weaver[/deck]

Over a third of our deck is cycling creatures that allow us to churn through our deck, hitting land drops while filling our graveyard. From there, a [card]Demonic Dread[/card] or [card]Violent Outburst[/card] WILL cast [card]Living End[/card], forcing the opponent to sacrifice all of their creatures, returning all of our monsters to the field.

Yes, this deck is pretty unfair.

The main issue now is deciding what lands to play, and the options really expand with your budget. Access to [card]Stomping Grounds[/card], [card]Overgrown Tomb[/card], and [card]Blood Crypt[/card] are really nice with the land cyclers we are playing, but we can get by with basics. [card]Blackcleave Cliffs[/card] and [card]Copperline Gorge[/card] are some nice options, while [card]Karplusan Forest[/card], [card]Sulfurous Springs[/card], and [card]Llanowar Wastes[/card] offer us some painful alternatives. [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card] is nice, but again, basics will get there more often than not. The choice is yours!

As long as Living End remains unbanned I promise this deck is good for cheap wins.

Living End Sideboard

I’ve also included a pretty potent and extremely budget sideboard that wouldn’t change too much given unlimited money. Personally, I would play [card]Leyline of the Void[/card] over [card]Faerie Macabre[/card], but this is about what I played in my last Modern Grand Prix.

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[deck]4 Faerie Macabre
1 Gnaw to the Bone
2 Brindle Boar
4 Ingot Chewer
4 Shriekmaw[/deck]

This gives us some options to attack the graveyard, gain life, kill artifacts, and kill creatures.

Cheap Modern Fun

Cheap laughs, cheap fun, cheap wins. Modern offers all of these. Hope you find the idea of one of these enjoyable enough to put together for yourself. Have a great Thanksgiving week!

<3 Travis twitchtv.com/Traviswoo Questions! Comments!! Think there's something I forgot!?

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