GB Modern Midrange

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Posted December 26, 2016 by Abdullah Elhawary in Nerdy Bits

Modern’s premier midrange decks have always been Jund or Junk. Would you believe me if I told you that a third color isn’t necessary? That you don’t need Lightning Bolt, Path to Exile, Terminate or Lingering Souls? Trying to play fair in an unfair world doesn’t seem appealing, but reducing the number of tools in your proverbial toolbox seems like total madness. It can be done though and, with a good amount of success I may add. I believe it was GP Dallas Fort Worth when GB midrange was on camera. The list had Courser of Kruphix and Tireless Tracker, which makes it much different than this GB deck but there is clearly something there. The full power of GB hasn’t been exploited yet but an MtGO player, edward40hands, is onto something with this list.

B/G Midrange by edward40hands:

5-0 in Competitive Modern League 2016-12-15

Maindeck:

Lands (23):
4x Blooming Marsh
2x Forest
3x Ghost Quarter
3x Hissing Quagmire
2x Marsh Flats
2x Overgrown Tomb
2x Swamp
4x Verdant Catacombs
1x Windswept Heath

Creatures (15):
4x Dark Confidant
3x Scavenging Ooze
1x Eternal Witness
2x Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet
4x Tarmogoyf
1x Tasigur, the Golden Fang

Sorceries (11):
4x Inquisition of Kozilek
2x Thoughtseize
2x Collective Brutality
1x Traverse the Ulvenwald
2x Maelstrom Pulse

Instants (5):
4x Abrupt Decay
1x Geth’s Verdict

Artifacts (2):
2x Mishra’s Bauble

Planeswalkers (4):
4x Liliana of the Veil
Sideboard:

1x Ghost Quarter
1x Slaughter Pact
2x Duress
1x Illness in the Ranks
2x Surgical Extraction
1x Golgari Charm
1x Unravel the Aether
1x Shadow of Doubt
1x Drown in Sorrow
1x Liliana, the Last Hope
1x Tasigur, the Golden Fang
1x Maelstrom Pulse
1x Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet

My take on the deck:

This deck has a lot going for it, but ultimately I think the entire 75 is fairly rough. I disagree with the exclusion of Grim Flayer in this kind of shell considering that there are two Baubles that are only here to add card types for Tarmogoyf and turn on Delirium for Traverse. Moreover, Grim Flayer would help you dig for the few instant speed answers (something that I also disagree with) but also a lot of the ones ofs in the list. The reason Grim Flayer is really good right now is that a lot of decks are set up to attack and defend very poorly. These decks include Zooicide, Burn, Affinity, Dredge and Infect among others, which usually means you will connect once, grow your Flayers and Goyfs, fuel Tasigur and set up your draw. If you want to push the Delirium theme a bit further, you should consider adding both Liliana, the Last Hope and Courser of Kruphix to the main deck.

The delirium package isn’t how I choose to midrange, not in modern, because there is another way. It keeps the basic GB shell but adds more instant speed removal in the form of Victim of Night and Disfigure. I am also a fan in Courser of Kruphix in this deck, as it compliments Dark Confidant quite well in both the card advantage aspect and by gaining you a few life points so you can’t lose to a Bob flip a turn later. I also like a 2-2 split of Liliana of the Veil and Liliana, the Last Hope because it diversifies your threats by doing it all really: supplying card advantage, killing off Lingering Souls, mana dorks, infect threats and affinity threats and threatening a game winning ultimate. This is my take on the deck

GB Rock

Test deck by Abdullah Elhawary

Maindeck:

Lands (24):
4x Blooming Marsh
2x Forest
3x Ghost Quarter
3x Hissing Quagmire
2x Marsh Flats
2x Overgrown Tomb
2x Swamp
4x Verdant Catacombs
1x Windswept Heath

Creatures (15):
4x Dark Confidant
3x Scavenging Ooze
2x Courser of Kruphix
2x Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet
4x Tarmogoyf

Sorceries (9):
4x Inquisition of Kozilek
2x Thoughtseize
1x Collective Brutality
2x Maelstrom Pulse

Instants (8):
4x Abrupt Decay
1x Disfigure
1x Dismember
2x Victim of Night

Planeswalkers (4):
2x Liliana of the Veil
2x Liliana, the Last Hope
Sideboard:

1x Fulminator Mage
1x Smother
1x Kitchen Finks
2x Collective Brutality
3x Surgical Extraction
2x Golgari Charm
3x Natural State
1x Shadow of Doubt
1x Tasigur, the Golden Fang

Matchup Guides:

Dredge:

You have a a winnable game 1 against Dredg, which is something neither Jund nor Junk can claim to have. With 3 Ooze, 1 Kalitas and a lot of high toughness creatures, you should be able to survive their onslaught. Postboard, Surgical Extraction is usually lights out since their deck is a lot of set up for not that many payoffs. Additionally, their decks will have a few dead cards as they board in Nature’s Claim expecting Leyline of the Void and Grafidgger’s Cage.

Infect:

One of the matches where having more Instant speed removal is necessary. They have exactly 12 threats and only 4 of those, Glistener Elf, don’t have any inherent evasion. You should be able to brickwall it or force them to use pump spells to kill your creatures. Ghost Quarter is also exceptional here as it gets rid of Inkmoth Nexus. With a fast clock and cheap disruption, Infect is, for the most part, a good match. Postboard, access to Fulminator Mage, Smother and Golgari Charm makes the already good matchup great.

Zooicide:

Similar to Infect, Zooicide is a matchup where your quick clock and cheap removal shine since it is a threat light deck. Postboard, you get a few more removal options and Shadow of Doubt. Their dependence on a high number of fetchlands turns Shadow of Doubt into an instant-speed Stone Rain that replaces itself.

Burn:

This match is slightly favorable in game 1 because this deck more lifegain in the form of Courser, Ooze and Kalitas than life loss in the form of Bob and Thoughtseize. After game 1, you get Collective Brutality and Kitchen Finks which usually are 3 for 1’s against burn.

Affinity:

Aside from Etched Champion, your removal can just pick off their main threats whether they are creatures or not (looking at you Cranial Plating). Your sideboard gives you access to Natural State which can hit anything in their deck. Golgari Charm can also be used to take out a lot of their 1 toughness creatures.

Tron:

The 3 main deck Ghost Quarters gives you a much better than chance against Tron than Jund and Abzan. Moreover, 2 Maelstrom Pulses means that a Karn or Ugin isn’t just game-over. Postboard you get access to Surgical Extraction and Fulminator Mage, which together (or with Ghost Quarter) can shut off Tron for good.

Jund/ Abzan:

This matchup is a lot of fun to play and with Bob, Courser and Liliana, the Last Hope ensures that you can go long with the GBx decks of Modern. You don’t gain that much other than Finks and Tasigur (and Golgari Charm against Lingering Souls).


About the Author

Abdullah Elhawary