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Modern Metagame: MTGO Challenge Champions 3/31-4/2

Cards: Grief | 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?

Creativity, Rhinos and Scam continue to win, but some old favorites found their way back on top.

MTGO Friday Night Challenge Results

  1. 5C Creativity - nathanb1992

  2. Mono-Blue Tron - shoktroopa

  3. Domain Zoo - sydneydude

  4. BR “Scam” Midrange - thodoris17

  5. Mono-Blue Affinity - Tezzey

  6. Merfolk - mashmalovsky

  7. Domain Zoo - quinniac

  8. Jeskai Control - andrw1232

Full list here

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

MTGO Saturday Morning Challenge Results

  1. Mill - Unknowless

  2. Mono-Black Cabal Coffers - Trellon

  3. Mono-Black Cabal Coffers - Xenowan

  4. 5C Creativity - AlexanderRosdahl

  5. BR “Scam” Midrange - christiano7

  6. UR Murktide - Penseur

  7. Jeskai Prowess - homstar52

  8. Mill - tibalt_of_red_sub

Full list here

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

MTGO Saturday Night Challenge Results

  1. Mono-Green Tron - narca

  2. BR “Scam” Midrange - qbturtle15

  3. BR “Scam” Midrange - thodoris17

  4. Temur Rhinos - LunaMercury12

  5. BR “Scam” Midrange - christiano7

  6. BR “Scam” Midrange - YungDingo

  7. Abzan Devoted Druid - NathanOfTheGiltLeaf

  8. 5C Creativity - Jumba

Full list here

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

MTGO Sunday Challenge Results

  1. 5C Creativity - ErickJR

  2. Living End - elquinielas

  3. Jeskai Control - viktor_von_muerte

  4. Merfolk - ht991122

  5. Temur Rhinos - AlvaroTJ

  6. Temur Rhinos - tonyjones22

  7. Hardened Scales - LordEgg

  8. Living End - Drugo

Full list here

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

MTGO Modern Challenge Top Decks

Too Much Mana

There were two Mono-Black Coffers decks in the top four on Saturday morning, thanks to Trellon and Xenowan. The deck has been more popular in the past but is winning again with the help of a few new cards.

The plan is simple: Find Cabal Coffers and Urborg to generate an absurd amount of mana, then spend it on powerful spells like Invoke Despair or any number of expensive artifacts from your sideboard thanks to Karn, the Great Creator. Night’s Whisper and Profane Tutor help find what you need, and the pile of removal spells, plus Damnation, ensure you won’t get run over by creatures.

The list now gets to play four copies of Demolition Field, in addition to the four Field of Ruin it already ran. This is very powerful against the four and five-color decks that run very few basic lands and can’t cast all their spells when constrained on mana.

Much like Tron decks that play Karn, the sideboard here is full of artifacts. Some are big threats that can take over the game, but The Stone Brain is a recent addition that helps immensely against strategies that rely on one or two specific cards. It’s very hard for an opposing Creativity or Living End player to win when their namesake card is gone, especially in game one.

Devoted to Going Infinite

Another deck that added a few new toys from recent sets focuses on Devoted Druid, with NathanOfTheGiltLeaf making the top eight Saturday night. This strategy has been around in Modern forever, combining Devoted Druid and Vizier of Remedies to create infinite mana, winning with a Walking Ballista.

Stoneforge Mystic allows Viridian Longbow and Luxior, Giada’s Gift to be searched up, which are additional cards that can go infinite. Kaldra Compleat is a bonus that can sometimes win games on its own.

The deck now gets to play Tyvar’s Stand as an on-color way to protect its creatures and sometimes help win with combat damage, as well as Tyvar himself. This new planeswalker helps speed up the combo, untapping creatures and allowing them to tap for mana the turn they enter the battlefield. He also helps search for whatever creature you might need, and together with Finale of Devastation and Eldamri’s Call makes sure the combo can be assembled quickly and consistently.

Tipping the Scales

One more strategy that used to be much more popular, Hardened Scales, found its way into the top eight on Sunday, thanks to LordEgg. The deck utilizes the one mana enchantment to quickly grow its army of artifacts, with Arcbound Ravager and Modular creatures pumping up Hangarback Walker and Walking Ballista.

It’s become more resilient thanks to Patchwork Automoton, providing a threat with built-in protection. Urza’s Saga helps find more fodder for the battlefield and always gives the option of creating huge constructs. The list now plays Mirrex, a brand-new land that provides another outlet for spare mana by creating extra artifact creatures.

Hardened Scales is also one deck that can use Soulless Jailer as graveyard hate. It not only fits in with the artifact theme and stops most graveyard strategies, but also prevents spells being cast from exile - a great way to stop Indomitable Creativity.

Rest of the Best

Speaking of Creativity, the deck won the challenge both on Friday and Sunday, in the hands of nathanb1992 and ErickJR, respectively. The lists were very similar, opting to play the five-color version for Teferi, Leyline Binding, and Prismatic Ending. The white splash has proven popular, and every top eight list this week was five-color. Creativity is the second most popular choice now, only behind Murktide.

Mill, piloted by Unknowless, won Saturday morning’s challenge, showing that at least a few copies of Jace, the Perfected Mind deserve to be played. Many decks have a hard time interacting with Mill’s game plan or winning fast enough, and the strategy has a few naturally good matchups.

Tron is still a threat! Mono-Green won on Saturday night in the hands of narca, and shoktroopa made the finals Friday with their unique controlling Mono-Blue build. They’ve been playing this variant and finding success for a while now, which just goes to show how important getting familiar with a deck can be.

Black-red “Scam” was also everywhere this weekend, including two separate top-eight finishes by christiano7. All Scam’s hand disruption and quick clock make it hard to win for combo decks, at least without redundancy or a way to fight back.

Finally, elquinielas made the finals Sunday with Living End, and that wasn’t the only copy in the top eight. There is plenty of graveyard hate in this meta, but Living End has the tools to fight it.

Trends and Takeaways

Fury has made it more difficult for aggressive decks full of small creatures to win, but Affinity and Merfolk both found their way into the top eight Friday. When playing creatures out on the first few turns, be aware if your opponent could have a Fury and try not to overextend if you can help it.

Temur is the go-to color combination for Rhinos players, with all ten lists opting for the smoother mana base and the ability to play Blood Moon. This version is also far stronger against Blood Moon, which can’t be said for other multicolor decks growing in popularity like Domain Zoo or Omnath. Watch out if you’re playing more than three colors!

Murktide, Hammer, and various Atraxa-focused strategies are down this week, but will surely bounce back soon. Rhinos, “Scam,” and Creativity are by far the clear winners, and the format continues to be defined by these three decks trying to do something inherently unfair as soon as possible. Will any new cards help fight against these top decks, or will they continue to stay on top?


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