Modern Jund – Mystical Teachings with David Inglis
Hey everyone and welcome back to my column. Sorry it’s been a long while but with my final year of Uni taking up most of my time. I have been unable to write about Magic but I’m back. So let’s get right down to it.
This week we will be looking at Jund as a PTQ deck for modern. The modern format is approaching and the first UK PTQ is just a few short days away. I wish I could of told you that I broke the format with some clever control deck that was using Vivid Lands and Shimmering Grottos but alas my weapon of choice will be Jund and this article will provide some reasoning for that.
Why would I play Jund?
Many people are surprised when I tell them I like playing Jund in modern and this is largely due to the fact I like to durdle around most of the time, but I feel that Jund is a good choice for the following reasons.
- Card Advantage – Jund is a deck that is often described as being at the mercy of the draw step and that is largely true of any Green/Black based Rock deck, however Jund has both Dark Confidant and Bloodbraid Elf to help provide card advantage. Dark Confidant is a very powerful card which can really start to dominate a game and I think that Jund is the best shell for Dark Confidant.
- No Bad Matchups – Jund also has the advantage of having “No bad Matchups” While Tron and some combo decks can provide a tough match up. These matches get much better after board. Having “No bad matchups” is something that really appeals to me for a long tournament like a PTQ. The state of Modern is very wide open so having a deck that can do battle with most of the popular decks is where I want to be.
- Options – Another advantage of playing Jund is that you have a lot of options when it comes to Maindeck cards and Sideboard cards. This is an appeal to someone like me who likes to try out lots of new cards and ideas. It also rewards Metagaming and working out the format.
Although it is not all upside with Jund, a key reason many people do not like playing the deck is the fact that the mirror match can come down to top decking and some matches you can draw the wrong side of your deck. An example of this being against Tron you can draw all of your removal and against affinity you can draw all of the hand disruption. However this aside I think Jund is still a good choice for the format.
Rambling about Jund
The following are some thoughts and ideas on Jund. I intend on testing every day this week. So the following are just some ideas and thoughts that me and my friends have been trying out. Feel free to suggest anything we may of overlooked or missed.
Lingering Souls – A recent innovation of Jund is the addition of White to play Lingering Souls over Kitchen Finks or Gerralf’s Messenger. The reason for this is that Lingering Souls is very powerful in the Mirror and against Infect and other creature decks and this is certainly true. However Lingering Souls is very bad against some of Junds bad match ups (Twin and Tron) and Souls does very little too help this.
Another reason for Souls not being so good is an issue of Mana. People have begun to rediscover Spreading Seas as a way to battle Jund and the addition to White in Jund makes the mana much worse. Souls is a powerful card and I have been testing with it. But I feel that maybe moving away from Souls and back to “Classic” Jund may be a smart move. Maybe I could use that space to Main deck Olivia Voldaran to dominate the creature Match ups or play more disruption to help the bad match ups. Im not sure yet what the right play is; but the White does come at a price. Like white only offers you Souls, its not even like you want Path to Exile.
Cobra – I don’t like it at all. I don’t think it does nearly enough. Untapping with it seems ambitious and the so called “nut draws” don’t feel that powerful. I also don’t like cutting Dark Confidant from the deck at all. Powering out a Thundermaw Hellkite does feel powerful but Cobra is fragile and it is a bad cascade and a miserable top deck. (I have yet to play with Cobra so I am willing to be wrong)
Darkblast – I feel that Darkblast has a real chance to shine in this Modern format. It is a nightmare for Infect to deal with and is strong at hampering the Pod decks as well as being powerful in the early turn of affinity. It also has some level of interaction with the Deathrite Shamans. Darkblast also allows you to kill opposing Bobs and against Twin it can easily remove the Grim Lavamancers which have become popular as well as being able to kill Pestermite. In testing Darkblast has been very powerful. I am sure I will be playing some in my 75/76 at the PTQ at the weekend.
Dismember – PV wrote about the advantages of Dismember over Terminate in his last article. I am currently playing a 2/1 split in favour of Terminate. I do like that Dismember is 1 mana in some match ups however I think Terminate is much better for the mirror and that is a consideration I must take when building Jund.
Abrupt Decay – I think I would rather have Dismember. I have 2 in my board but I really don’t like having it there. Its good vs twin but maybe I just want more Dismembers.
Rakdos Charm and Slaughter Games – Both have just been solid and thanks to Alex T for pointing me in the right directionSwords of X and Y– I have played Sword of Light and Shadow in my Jund sideboards before and quite liked it and this got me thinking with all the Lingering Souls running around maybe Sword of War and Peace is where I want to be.
That’s all I have for this week. I have some more testing to do. I will be updating my ideas via facebook and twitter and I will be writing a report from the PTQ provided I don’t go 0-3 Drop. Modern is shaping too be quite the format and I look forward to exploring it some more. Finally just a quick message to everyone who has offered me support this year. My level of play has risen soooo much thanks to you guys.
David Inglis X