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Big-Brain Brews (Gone Wrong): Five-Color Moonmist (Modern Gameplay)

What happens when a big-brain brew goes too far? Last week, I had a brilliant idea for an Against the Odds deck—so brilliant, in fact, that I found myself wondering why no one had thought of it before. So, I threw the deck together, jumped onto Magic Online, and started to record with Five-Color Moonmist. Check out the video, and then we'll talk more about the deck.

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The Problem

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Welp, that didn't go as planned. It turns out that the reason no one has built the big-brained "flip all of my flipwalkers with Moonmist" deck is that the plan doesn't actually work. Like, at all. On one hand, this isn't all that intuitive because Moonmist works with every other flip card (that's a Human) in Magic, but flipwalkers are unique. The way planeswalkers work is that they enter the battlefield with X loyalty (the number on the bottom-right corner), and if they ever have zero loyalty, they immediately go to the graveyard. The problem we ran into is that Moonmist doesn't actually cause our planeswalkers to enter the battlefield; it just transforms them from their creature side to their planeswalker side. Since our planeswalkers aren't actually entering the battlefield (just transforming), they end up flipping but having zero loyalty. (If you read any of the flipwalkers closely, you'll see that they all exile themselves and then return to the battlefield transformed, unlike other transform cards, which just transform. This wording allows the flipwalkers to enter the battlefield with their proper loyalty and stay alive). 

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The good news is that we still won the match and there might still be potential for a Moonmist deck in Modern. It turns out that using Moonmist to flip Jacob Hauken, Inspector and Jerren, Corrupted Bishop is still pretty powerful, and if we needed to, we could reach out into some more traditional transform cards like Huntmaster of the Fells and other Werewolves, considering that flipping Werewolves was the original intent of Moonmist anyway. If you've got some ideas on how to brew the Moonmist deck without the flipwalkers, make sure to let me know in the comments!

The other lesson is that if you brew a lot of decks, some of them probably won't work the way you want—or maybe it's that if you have what you think is an amazing idea and wonder why nobody else has thought of it before, the answer is probably that they have but realized it didn't work. Anyway, hopefully, you got a laugh from my big-brained brewing mistake. As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive or at

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