Modern Revolution: Hour of Devastation

by Lee Shi Tian on 14 July 2017, Friday

Lee Shi Tian

 

Modern Revolution: Hour of Devastation

 

Welcome back everyone.

Last week I talked about Standard gems in Hour of Devastation. Today, I would like to cover the format I love the most: Modern. What are some Hour of Devastation cards which might have a place in Modern? Let's find out!

 

 

Overwhelming Splendor


An 8 mana enchantment looks way too slow by itself. However, Modern is a format where we have numerous ways to cheat overcosted cards into play. Enduring Ideal is the first card comes to my mind.

Yet, the theme I'd like to discuss are the curses. Since Innistrad, we've got lots of curses printed over the years. The potential of Curse of Misfortunes becomes higher and higher. We even got Bitterheart Witch to double the counts. Pairing Overwhelming Splendor with Curse of Death's Hold means your opponent's creature will be directly binned into the graveyard without any triggers. Against combo decks, you can go Curse of Exhaustion. Maybe what we need is just a reliable way to stay alive and close the game with Curse of Thirst or Cruel Reality.



 

Solemnity


Solemnity shuts down Infect singlehandedly as players cannot get poison counters. However, Infect is not popular anymore. How about we give all our opponent's creatures Infect with Phyrexian Unlife? Casting these two enchantments on turn 3 and 4 is a solid plan in Game 1.

I can see it being applied in Ad Nauseam as another combo path. This will force opponent to board in enchantment hate after sideboarding and you could blank them with the classic Angel's Grace and Ad Nauseam combo.



Steward of Solidarity

 

Curving Steward of Solidarity into Intruder Alarm could give you infinite 1/1s by turn 3. A cheap two-card combo is not something we have seen in Modern. Both Devoted Druid and Vizier of Remedies require at least three combo pieces but now we only need two. I am not sure how competitive the combo would be, yet it is something should not be overlooked.


Fraying Sanity


Call me crazy, but I have a strong feeling that Fraying Sanity can make mill decks become real!

Blue-Black Mill is a strategy that has been at the top tables of a Grand Prix after Day 1. Fraying Sanity into Traumatize is a one-two punch if your opponent's deck is at even number. Land counts in decks is at all time low thanks to Traverse the Ulvenwald and Street Wraith. Sometimes Mind Funeral could mill more than half of the deck. However, mill decks could be a bit awkward against decks with Delve.



Liliana's Defeat


Let's take a look at what Grixis Shadow is playing. Death's Shadow, check. Tasigur, the Golden Fang, check. Gurmag Angler, check. Liliana of the Veil, check. Liliana, the Last Hope, check. Snapcaster Mage? Whatever. 

How about Grim Flayer, Dark Confidant and Siege Rhino? Liliana's Defeat is an extremely powerful sideboard card against the top strategies right now. I can see it become a solid sideboard choice in the current metagame.


Life Goes On


Do we actually need more Burn hate?

Time your removal and cast Life Goes On on turn two and it could mean game over for most burn decks where even Skullcrack and Atarka's Command can't do much. Remember, holding up a two-mana "counter" for a one-mana card is still a bad deal for Boros Burn.



Bloodwater Entity


Miracles is the mechanic I want to bring up here. There is not much way to abuse Miracles in Modern as Jace, the Mind Sculptor was banned at the very beginning of the format. While putting Terminus back to the top of your library might not be the thing you want to do after resolving Bloodwater Entity, Thunderous Wrath is actually a good deal there.

How about Bonfire of the Damned? Sorry, couldn't resist this one.

 

 

 

The Locust God


Pairing The Locust God with Beck // Call is an instant kill as you can loop the card draw triggers and each The Locust God trigger. Although Esper Vengeance is the best  Goryo's Vengeance deck at the moment, I think there is chance that The Locust God could make the Grixis version possible. An "end of turn" The Locust God can lead you into multiple triggers next turn. 


Claim // Fame


Claim // Fame looks like a extremely good addition to any Death's Shadow strategy. In Grixis, you could also return Snapcaster Mage. Through this interaction, have access to a one-mana 2/1 which can flashback any spell. You can even chain from Snapcaster Mage to flashback Claim to get Death's Shadow.

For Jund Shadow, you can get back Tarmogoyf or Grim Flayer as well. I think Claim // Fame will definitely push Death's Shadow to another level of dominance where you now can add 8 to 10 hasted power to the board for only 3 mana.



Driven // Despair


Both sides of the spell is good for Dredge. Card drawing from Driven can provide extra dredgeS, while Despair could lock your opponent's resources. While Despair might not look charming, please remember you actually get the spell for free when you dredge it into the graveyard.

The only problem of Driven // Despair is that while it does help you to execute your game plan, it could sometimes be an overkill card if you already have got multiple creatures in play.



Hollow One


We all know that when there is a way to reduce down the mana cost of any card to zero, players will be working on breaking it. Street Wraith is the reason Hollow One could go nuts. Also, the discard outlets in Modern are so much better than Standard. We could have Faithless Looting into Street Wraith and cast multiple Hollow One for free on turn 1.

Dream big and go big!



Scavenger Grounds


Scavenger Grounds is close to being free for decks with Expedition Map and Sylvan Scrying. Classic and Eldrazi Tron could easily play Scavenger Grounds as a one of in their maindeck to hedge any graveyard deck.

The ability to exile graveyards at instant speed is the reason Scavenger Grounds is better than Bojuka Bog. If you can fit in extra Deserts in the deck, Scavenger Grounds could destroy any graveyard-based strategy.

 


So these are my Modern picks for Hour of Devastation. Overall Hour of Devastation is a weak set to me, but we saw how an overpowered set would end up in Kaladesh Block. I believe resetting the power level is what we really need for now. The darkest hour is just before the dawn. Remember, we had the Kamigawa Block before the Ravnica Block, and we also had the Theros Block before the Khans of Tarkir Block, right? Don't worry, everything will be fine.

@leearson




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