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Much Abrew: Jund Cascade (Modern, Magic Online)


Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About Nothing. When this video goes live, I'll be out in Las Vegas, first for MagicFest Vegas and then for a few days of vacation, which means I had to take a guess at which Instant Deck Tech from last week would be most popular so I could prerecord the episode before leaving. In the end, I decided to go with Jund Cascade, mostly because Rhinos are sweet and Crashing Footfalls seems like a powerful card that hasn't gotten its just deserts since the release of Modern Horizons. Our plan for today is simple: use Violent Outburst, Demonic Dread, and maybe even Bloodbraid Elf to cascade into Crashing Footfalls early and often, and then hopefully get our opponent down with 4/4 trampling Rhinos! Can the plan work? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we'll talk more about the deck!

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Much Abrew: Jund Cascade

Discussion

  • As for our record, we finished our league with a 3-2, which is solid if unspectacular. However, the deck felt even better than the record suggests. One of our losses came to Neobrand, which killed us on Turn 2 and then Turn 1 and has draws that beat almost every deck in Modern (in general, the way to beat Neobrand is to trust that it will beat itself with its inherent inconsistency, but that didn't show up in our match). The second came in a three-game match against Hogaak, where we had to mulligan to three in the last game to find a Leyline of the Void only to have our opponent Nature's Claim it on Turn 1). On the other hand, we took down one of the hottest new decks in Modern in Mono-Red Prowess, crushed Five-Color Niv-Mizzet Reborn, and avenged our loss to Hogaak by drawing more Leylines than they drew Nature's Claims in Round 5. 
  • Crashing Footfalls was very impressive. Making two 4/4s on Turn 2 or 3 is great, and it gets even better with Violent Outburst making them at instant speed, often allowing us to eat a couple of attackers by making surprise blockers. We had some games where we literally cast all four copies of Crashing Footfalls by Turn 5, and eight 4/4 tramplers are enough to beat pretty much any fair deck in the format and even some of the unfair ones.
  • The biggest issue with Jund Cascade is the curve. To make the plan of cascading into Crashing Footfalls work, we can't play any cards that cost less than three mana, outside of Crashing Footfalls itself. This sometimes leaves us in a position where we don't do anything for the first two turns of the game. And while making two 4/4s on Turn 3 helps stabilize the board, it sometimes isn't enough, especially if we are on the draw. 
  • As such, Simian Spirit Guide feels like the most important card in our deck. Being able to start making Rhinos (or even just casting a random three-drop like Gruul Spellbreaker) on Turn 2 rather than Turn 3 is super helpful in speeding up the deck. It might be worth adding another Gemstone Caverns or two to the mana base as another way to get to three mana on Turn 2 that doesn't ruin our cascade plan. 
  • You might have noticed that I made a couple of small changes to the deck from the build we saw in the Instant Deck Tech. Viashino Sandsprinter doesn't feel like a Standard-playable card, let alone one that has a home in Modern, and having 24 lands feels like a lot for our curve, especially with Street Wraith and Simian Spirit Guide. As a result, we dropped a Viashino Sandsprinter and a land for two more Seasoned Pyromancers, which felt really solid as a way to filter through bad draws (like extra lands or copies of Crashing Footfalls we happen to draw in the mid-game). 
  • The tough Hogaak matchup shouldn't be much of a concern moving forward. There's basically zero chance that Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis will still be legal in Modern after tomorrow's banned-and-restricted announcement. That will probably improve Jund Cascade by default, although we'll have to see how the post-Hogaak meta shakes out to know for sure.
  • So, should you play Jund Cascade? I think the answer is yes. The deck is aggressive and fun, and it can get off to some crazy starts thanks to our cascade spells and Crashing Footfalls. While it might be a touch slow against the most unfair decks in the format (like we saw against Neobrand), against anything even slightly fair, our deck—overflowing with cheap creatures and a bunch of two-for-ones thanks to our cascade cards—felt really good. If you like beating down but in a deck with plenty of virtual card advantage or just like Rhinos, Jund Cascade seems like a pretty reasonable option for Modern. 

Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today! As always, leave your thoughts, ideas, opinions, and suggestions in the comments, and you can reach me on Twitter @SaffronOlive or at SaffronOlive@MTGGoldfish.com.


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