top of page

Modern Metagame: MTGO Challenge Champions 3/17-3/19

MTGO Modern Challenge results are in and these are the spiciest decks of the weekend.
Cards: Crashing Footfalls | Indomitable Creativity | Art: WotC

Every weekend, Modern challenges on MTGO showcase the format’s top decks and attract hundreds of great players looking to battle. What decks topped the tournaments this weekend?

Where did Murktide go? Rhinos and Creativity took over this weekend, but as always a few interesting lists stick out. Here’s a quick rundown of each day’s top eight archetypes:

MTGO Friday Night Challenge Results

  1. UR Breach - jakobpablo

  2. Esper Control - Mathieu23

  3. UW Hammer - Xwhale

  4. Jeskai Obosh - Gigy

  5. Temur Rhinos - rastaf

  6. Temur Rhinos - WoefulElegy

  7. Jund Food - TristanJWL

  8. 5C Creativity - internetsurfer09

Full list here

Direct links courtesy of Reddit u/FereMiyJeenyus and their MTGO Results Scraper.

MTGO Saturday Morning Challenge Results

  1. UW Hammer - thekingofnone

  2. 5C Creativity - DarthStone

  3. Temur Rhinos - AlvaroTJ

  4. Jund Midrange - zarbo

  5. 5C Creativity - Jumba

  6. Mono-Green Tron - Bullz0Eye

  7. Temur Rhinos - FerMTG

  8. UW Hammer - Jackomatrus

Full list here

Direct links courtesy of Reddit u/FereMiyJeenyus and their MTGO Results Scraper.

MTGO Saturday Night Challenge Results

  1. 5C Creativity - Jumba

  2. UW Hammer - ls149950

  3. BR “Scam” Midrange - aplapp

  4. BR “Scam” Midrange - Golgarburr

  5. Temur Rhinos - Bullwinkkle6705

  6. Jeskai Thopter Foundry - gyyby297

  7. UR Murktide - twinlesstwin

  8. Amulet Titan - NathanOfTheGiltLeaf

Full list here

Direct links courtesy of Reddit u/FereMiyJeenyus and their MTGO Results Scraper.

MTGO Sunday Challenge Results

  1. Yawgmoth - Xerk

  2. UW Control - Grosduk

  3. Twiddle Storm - CountrytimeCrusher

  4. Glimpse of Tomorrow - ScreenwriterNY

  5. UR Murktide - ArchaeusDota

  6. UR Murktide - Diem4x

  7. UR Murktide - MarioBBrega

  8. Jund Creativity - CokiFTW

Full list here

Direct links courtesy of Reddit u/FereMiyJeenyus and their MTGO Results Scraper.

MTGO Modern Challenge Top Decks

A Glimpse at Victory

Atraxa is back again, this time with yet another way to get cheated out onto the battlefield. The Glimpse combo has been popular in the past, spewing out as many permanents as possible before finding a cascade spell to put Glimpse of Tomorrow on the stack. Two recent cards have helped make the archetype even more powerful, One with the Multiverse and Atraxa, and ScreenwriterNY proved it by taking the deck to the top four on Sunday.

Before, the deck played Chancellor of the Forge as both a way to create an extra permanent early and as something reasonable to Glimpse into late. Now with playsets of Atraxa and Emrakul, it’s more likely to hit one of these haymakers that can win the game on the spot. Plus, with four copies each of Omniscience and One with the Multiverse, an expensive creature in your hand becomes much easier to cast, and even lets you use Emrakul’s extra turn trigger.

Even if your opponent can answer the immediate threats a resolved Glimpse provides, Atraxa fills your hand and lets you try again the next turn, and the expensive blue enchantments allow you to cast anything you want.

The strategy is all-in on the combo, utilizing Force of Negation in the main deck and more counters and Leyline of Sanctity for protection in the sideboard. With the possibility of an Atraxa or Emrakul as early as turn three, it’s easy to see why.

Fun at the Foundry

Here’s a deck that can adapt and attack from different angles. The “combo” aspect of this list involves using Thopter Foundry to sacrifice Sword of the Meek, creating a 1/1 Thopter for every one mana you want to spend. It’s easy enough to assemble the combo thanks to Stoneforge Mystic, Goblin Engineer, and Ingenious Smith, but there are several other routes to victory.

With so many artifacts, Urza’s Saga is an obvious addition, and sometimes creating a few huge construct tokens is enough to win the game. Because you’re already playing Stoneforge Mystic, cheating a Kaldra Compleat into play is always an option, and tough to beat for many decks. You also play Urza, Lord High Artificer, and left unanswered, the mana you gain from all your cheap artifacts can be overwhelming.

If your opponent only focuses on the graveyard to prevent the Thopter tokens, you can just play a fair game thanks to the removal and counterspells that pair with your artifacts. You’ll probably run into artifact hate, but without attacking the graveyard you’ll still be able to create an army of Thopters the turn you resolve a Foundry.

Charming Choices in Control

Control is back too, but this time it’s…Esper? The traditional blue and white control cards are usually paired with red, but Mathieu23 used black mana to make it to the finals on Friday. Going Esper gives access to a few cards that can make a big difference against the right deck.

Esper Charm is usually used as an instant-speed Divination, but having the ability to destroy an enchantment can be huge against an opposing Sigarda’s Aid or Underworld Breach. Cling to Dust can just be cycled if it’s not relevant, but being able to exile a creature at instant speed might win the game against Reanimator or Dredge.

Looking at the sideboard, Fracture is a flexible removal spell that only costs two mana, and Unmoored Ego is a great answer against combo decks. The usual graveyard hate and extra counterspells round out the extra cards. Will this black splash help control put up more results going forward?

Twiddle Time

Finally, the wildest deck of the weekend! Finishing in the top four on Sunday was CountrytimeCrusher and their unique take on Twiddle Storm. They know how to pilot the deck, having played it to success over the past few months in leagues and challenges.

The basic idea is to abuse Lotus Field, much like in Pioneer, creating extra mana by untapping it with Twiddle or Dream’s Grip. Tome Scour, Mishra’s Bauble, Consider, and Otherworldly Gaze help fill your graveyard for Underworld Breach.

With so many cheap spells, it doesn’t take much to repeatedly cast Tome Scour to mill your opponent out or find enough spells for a lethal Grapeshot. Along the way, Wishclaw Talisman can help find whatever you might need, and it can even be untapped in response to its activation for an extra search.

The success of yet another Underworld Breach strategy shows how powerful the card is, but also how important learning your deck and playing it often can be.

Rest of the Best

Hammer was back in big numbers this weekend, with thekingofnone winning the Saturday morning challenge. The lists all appear to be fairly similar, growing toward a consensus of the blue splash for Spell Pierce being too important to choose mono-white instead.

Rhinos continues to be a popular choice, with every top list this week choosing the streamlined Temur version over splashing for Leyline Binding. Creativity also continues its dominance, including Jumba impressively winning Saturday night after also making the Top 8 that morning. Most lists continue to choose to play five colors, but the Jund flavor has picked up in popularity slightly.

Other top decks that made the top eight include “Scam” Midrange and Murktide, with no big surprises as far as card choices go. Jund Midrange and Mono-Green Tron return this week, and Amulet Titan is back in the top eight after all the excitement around The Mycosynth Gardens. Gigy showed off with a unique red-white Obosh list, splashing blue to power up Prismatic Ending and sideboard Teferi, Time Raveler. The rarely-seen Jund Food and Blue-White Control also found their way to the elimination rounds.

Jakobpablo won the Friday challenge with the classic blue-red “fair” Underworld Breach strategy, opting not to splash white. Yawgmoth master Xerk came in first on Sunday with their deck of choice, showing that small creatures can still win in this Fury-filled meta.

Trends and Takeaways

Murktide has seemingly fallen a bit in popularity, although it’s still very powerful and heavily played. Creativity, the next most popular deck, exploded in numbers, showing up in every top eight this weekend. One disadvantage of playing a strategy this popular is that your opponents will undoubtedly know what to do against you, having played against it dozens of times before. Knowing your matchups and sideboard plans is important!

The next most played decks, Hammer, Scam, and Rhinos, also saw a surge in popularity this weekend. There's nothing too exciting to note about any of these lists, but know and understand how your deck plays against these five archetypes that make up almost half of the Modern metagame.

Lots of strategies with either a focus or complete necessity on the graveyard continue to do well. Don’t cut back on graveyard hate!

Modern has been revolving around a few decks, but as every weekend’s challenges show, almost anything can beat them and win. From Twiddle Storm to all the different ways to cheat Atraxa into play, this format is full of surprises.


❤️If you want to support Bolt the Bird, consider checking out our Patreon page and sharing this article! ❤️

🃏Need some cards for your next Modern league? Check out Cardhoarder's awesome rental program! You'll save money and support Bolt the Bird in the process. 🃏

1,018 views0 comments
bottom of page