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Much Abrew: Modern MUD (Modern, Magic Online)


Hello, everyone! Welcome to another episode of Much Abrew About Nothing. Last week during our Instant Deck Techs, the crazy ramp-combo deck Modern MUD came out on top, so we're heading to Modern today to see if we can kill some opponents with Turn 3 Blightsteel Colossuses by ramping out a Kuldotha Forgemaster with the help of some janky artifact ramp in Everflowing Chalice and Astral Cornucopia and weird ways to add charge counters to them, like Coretapper and Surge Node. Just how consistently can we get the crazy Turn 3 Blightsteel Colossus draw? Can Modern MUD actually compete in the format? Let's get to the video and find out; then, we can talk more about the deck!

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Much Abrew: Modern MUD

Discussion

  • Welp, that was a rough one. All in all, I played nine matches with Modern MUD across multiple leagues and ended up going 1-8, which is pretty abysmal.
  • The good news is that when everything comes together, Modern MUD can get some pretty unbeatable draws, often involving something like a Turn 3 hasty Blightsteel Colossus. While our total record in matches wasn't good, we did win a reasonable number of games along the way, including some in fantastic fashion.
  • While Modern MUD might look like an artifact midrange deck, it's really a combo deck. The combo is basically a zero-mana artifact like Everflowing Chalice or Astral Cornucopia, a way to put charge counters on that artifact like Coretapper or Surge Node, and a finisher like Kuldotha Forgemaster or Wurmcoil Engine
  • Perhaps the biggest problem with Modern MUD is that, while very powerful, it's extremely inconsistent. We had a ton of games where we'd draw two of our three combo pieces but miss out on the third, and the deck pretty much does nothing if we're missing any one of our three combo pieces (either making a ton of mana but not having a finisher or not making enough mana to ever cast a finisher). 
  • While Ancient Stirrings helps to hold everything together, the deck is very dependent on its draws. This means mulliganing aggressively toward the combo since the deck has a lot of really dead, clunky draws if we don't have our combo in our opening hand. Finding a way to include some more card draw or card filtering would likely go a long way toward solving the deck's consistency issues.
  • The other challenge of Modern MUD is that the format is extremely prepared for artifact decks, thanks to Tron, Hardened Scales, Affinity, and the like. It seemed like every deck we played had sideboard cards that were either very good against our deck (like Ancient Grudge or Nature's Claim) or downright unbeatable (like Stony Silence or Shatterstorm). This led to some frustrating situations where we actually had our nut draw, but thanks to our opponent's disruption, it still wasn't good enough to actually win the game.
  • The other possibility is that I wasn't playing the deck right. In my earliest games with the deck, I don't think I was mulliganing aggressively enough, but I started to mulligan more aggressively throughout the matches. The problem is that the more we mulligan, the more we get blown out by a single artifact-removal spell.
  • As for improvements to make to the deck, there are a couple of artifacts that could go a long way toward shoring up bad matchups. The biggest is Pithing Needle or Sorcerous Spyglass. Across our nine matches, we lost twice to Tron, and both times, it was because of Oblivion Stone. Having a way to shut down Oblivion Stone (or various planeswalkers) seems like an easy way to flip some matchups from bad to good, especially considering that our deck is pretty good at finding specific artifacts. Another option is Spine of Ish Sah, which seems like an easy one-of to deal with annoying permanents. We can ramp into it pretty quickly with our charge counter mana, and there are even some situations where it is the correct tutor target for Kuldotha Forgemaster
  • So, should you play Modern MUD? This is a tough one. I don't think the deck is anywhere near as bad as our record suggests. The power level of its good draws is quite high—more than high enough to compete in Modern. On the other hand, the deck did feel inconsistent, and it seems like there is a ton of hate in Modern for this type of artifact strategy. Between getting locked by Chalice of the Void and Stony Silence, having our board wrathed by Oblivion Stone, and the endless targeted artifact removal, it felt like we were battling not only our deck's inconsistent (but powerful) nature but also a very hostile format. It's probable that at last some of this was variance—nine matches isn't a huge sample size—but it felt like we either beat ourselves with inconsistency or that our opponent always had the right answer at the right time. The small changes around the edges could shore up some of the problems, but even with these upgrades, Modern MUD feels like the type of deck that is more than good enough to 5-0 a league or win an FNM with good draws and matchups but with a really low floor with bad draws and hateful opponents. The good news is that the good games are spectacular, so even if you post a bad record with the deck, the Turn 3 Blightsteel Colossus kills help make up for all of the losses.

Conclusion

Anyway, that's all for today. Don't forget to vote for next week's deck by liking, commenting on, and subscribing to Instant Deck Tech videos. 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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