With the explosion of Modern, people have been scavenging for deck after deck and many a creation has surfaced- Zoo, 12Post, Splinter Twin, Faeries, etc. But one deck has still managed to crawl under the radar, and that’s what I’m going to share with you today. And it’s called Soul Sisters.
Soul Sisters was originally a deck for standard that came about with the release of [card]Soul’s Attendant[/card] and [card]Serra Ascendant[/card], for those who don’t know. Originally, the dream start was to play one of the ‘Soul Sisters’ on the first turn followed by [card]Ajani’s Pridemate[/card], immediately becoming a 3/3 on the table. From there, the deck is designed to be able to take the pridemate to larger-than-Goyf levels, until he’s either killed or the opponent just loses. To back up the strategy, we had [card]Survival Cache[/card] to give the deck more fuel, [card]Ranger of Eos[/card] to tutor up a pair of Serra Ascendants, and [card]Elspeth, Knight-Errant[/card] serving either to make soldiers and trigger your sisters or throw your Ajani’s Pridemate up into the air to beat through for lethal damage. The deck was annoying– very annoying, and now it’s back with a vengeance in the Modern format.
Another burst of staying power comes from [card]Proclamation of Rebirth[/card]. Casting this after a sweeper can put you right back where you started, bringing back a Serra Ascendant or two with some sisters to boot. From that alone, this card makes a much better recovery tool than [card]Spectral Procession[/card] could have been. Then there’s the channel ability, which adds a whole new element to the deck. When a game is going to go long, infinite Serra Ascendants will get there, and nothing short of a [card]Thoughtseize[/card] can stop you. If you don’t have that 30 life yet, infinite [card]Martyr of Sands[/card] will do the trick as well. And the martyr can be fetched up with Ranger of Eos as well.
This deck is rather interesting to play, since you are very much a beatdown player but most of your casts are as defensive as they are offensive. With cards like Ranger of Eos, [card]Kitchen Finks[/card], Proclamation of Rebirth and Elspeth, Knight-Errant, you can also extend as much as you’d like without ever actually overextending. I’ve found that often with this deck it’s hard to get down to no cards in hand even if you want to.
One of the strongest ways to cripple this deck is [card]Mental Misstep[/card], since many of the key players only cost one white to cast. Thankfully, it’s banned. That makes this deck so much better it’s not even funny. Your true enemy will be any combo deck that ignores your life total. Twin is a non-issue as long as you keep a sister in play, so Mill is the big threat to you. You just have to get there before they get you. 12Post is annoying, but it’s losing popularity and you just need that [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]. [card]Oblivion Ring[/card] will help keep [card]Ulamog, The Infinite Gyre[/card] at bay, as well as [card]Emrakul, The Aeons Torn[/card] if you manage to survive a direct hit with three lands and they don’t have a way of getting another. If they do get another, they annihilate your oblivion ring in the attack so that buys you more time, although at that point you’ll have nothing in play so recovery is indeed doubtful.
- 4 [card]Soul Warden[/card]
- 4 [card]Soul’s Attendant[/card]
- 3 [card]Serra Ascendant[/card]
- 1 [card]Figure of Destiny[/card]
- 1 [card]Martyr of Sands[/card]
- 4 [card]Ajani’s Pridemate[/card]
- 2 [card]Auriok Champion[/card]
- 4 [card]Kitchen Finks[/card]
- 3 [card]Ranger of Eos[/card]
- 4 [card]Path to Exile[/card]
- 3 [card]Oblivion Ring[/card]
- 2 [card]Proclamation of Rebirth[/card]
- 2 [card]Elspeth, Knight-Errant[/card]
- 4 [card]Tectonic Edge[/card]
- 19 [card]Plains[/card]
Note that there are no [card]Flagstones of Trokair[/card] or fetchlands in this list. The deck thinning is not relevant enough to go a turn behind on lands most of the time, there are no landfall creatures in the deck, and so much as a single point of damage from a fetchland can be enough to deactivate your Serra Ascendant. Also, we don’t have [card]Tarmogoyf[/card], so I fail to see why it would be a good idea to throw lands in the graveyard. If we don’t have a fetch and they don’t have a fetch, that’s even better for us. But if we play 12 lands that go to the graveyard then that will almost never happen.
More cards to consider:
I cut [card]Spectral Procession[/card] from this list simply because I like Proclamation of Rebirth better. You may disagree. It does provide flying targets for swords as well as trigger your sisters, making for the dream on turn three after casting a pridemate. However, it doesn’t recover as well from a sweep and doesn’t allow you to channel an infinite sea of dudes late in the game. Since your early plays are strong enough as they are, I like the proc, but if your opponents tend to pack graveyard hate then it may be a good idea to play Spectral Procession instead.
[card]Figure of Destiny[/card] is a good target to fish out from a Ranger of Eos when under 30 life. However, I stand to reason that if you can’t get and keep yourself above 30, then that should be more important to you than trying to swing with the Figure.
Another suggestion I saw was a green splash to play the planeshifted [card]Essence Warden[/card], adding a dose of consistency to the deck. However, the sisters are not what needs any more consistency and more often than not are dead draws after the fourth turn. It may be worth looking into for a more aggressive list than mine, but I’m not going to do it. I’m not giving it the time because I don’t see the benefit, and I don’t see where the deck has room to make that kind of change. So for me, it’s out of the question. However, if anyone out there comes up with a list, I will admit that I’m curious to see how it performs.