Gold cards tend to be particularly powerful, and the especially unique ones can find a place in Modern. Unfortunately, none of the cards from Guilds of Ravnica strike me as particularly good Glittering Wish targets, which is what I was really hoping for.
Oh well. Some other time perhaps.
This is the easy one.
Similar to Path to Exile, Assassin's Trophy does have a downside that you need to keep in mind. An automatic inclusion of four copies might not be the best route. Still, this card is going to show up and it's going to win tournaments. However, there will also be games where you blow up a bunch of Tron lands and they beat you by hardcasting Karns.
Yet another gimme. Sometimes the cards that show up in Modern are surprises, but I'm fine with getting some easy ones too!
Most decks that play cards like Reclamation Sage and Kitchen Finks are Selesnya, and this is a fantastic split card that closes the gap between combo decks like Krark-Clan Ironworks and the various green creature decks. Maindeck Knight of Autumn and be happy about it!
Utility cards are always welcome in Modern, and Knight of Autumn (Burchett) is no exception.
Lazav is potentially great in Modern, but I haven't been able to crack the code yet.
I did a quick Gatherer search and didn't come up with much, but there must be something for this card in Modern. It works with attack triggers, nullifying your own detrimental enters-the-battlefield triggers, and can copy dies triggers. On top of that, there are various shenanigans to be had with +1/+1 counters.
One of the potentially broken ways to use Lazav is to copy a creature, put several activations of that creature's activated ability on the stack, and activate Lazav to copy something else in response. Full English Breakfast was an Extended deck that used Volrath's Shapeshifter and Survival of the Fittest to accomplish the same thing, but we seem to be missing the pieces in Modern.
At the end of it all, I couldn't find anything better than using Lazav to copy things that were big, and Death's Shadow seems like the best of the bunch.
[CEDitor's Note: If you're looking for a deep dive into Lazav, check out Jadine's article from yesterday .]
The obvious home for a card like Creeping Chill is Dredge. Dredge typically wins by achieving a critical mass of bodies, usually using Conflagrate as either the finishing blow or as a means of clearing the way. Creeping Chill doesn't fit into that sort of strategy, so it would probably require an overhaul.
Dredge Burn? Did we just invent a new archetype?
Still, Creeping Chill could be used in lieu of Gnaw to the Bone and other similar effects as a means of winning damage races. The extra damage could help Bloodghast, plus make Conflagrate lethal even faster. I fully expect a new build to utilities it better, but folks will definitely try it.
Five mana? You've got to be kidding, right?
Let's be honest, no one is interested in playing fair in Modern. There's no way in hell I'd want to actually cast Doom Whisperer.
Enter Necrotic Ooze.
Griselbrand tends to be the best thing to be doing with Necrotic Ooze, but Doom Whisperer is a close second. The key is figuring out what to do with the ability to mill yourself for nearly twenty cards.
Elves hasn't been Tier 1 in older formats without Glimpse of Nature. Beck did not save Elves due to its mana cost, so why would people think the four-mana version would accomplish anything?
Being able to Chord of Calling for Beast Whisperer will be a strong option, but not necessarily one that puts Elves over the top. At the end of the day, Elves (and similar decks) get a decent tool that makes closing games easier, but that's about it.
This is my favorite potential Modern card on the entire list, if only because it deserves a try in Mardu Pyromancer. Playing three spells in the same turn typically only happens when you're doing your thing with Bedlam Reveler and Faithless Looting, which probably means you're supposed to be winning the game already. However, once you add more copies of Manamorphose into the deck, returning Arclight Phoenix (even multiple times during the course of a game) doesn't seem that crazy.
Mardu mostly has just Lingering Souls as a threat that's useful to discard to Faithless Looting. Arclight Phoenix, if viable, would be a wonderful addition, if only for giving your Faithless Lootings some additional value. Adding to your air force would be nice, especially in a format with Mantis Riders and Bant Spirits.
Make that Turn 2 Boom! pic.twitter.com/Yy9ynXa0QR— Marijn Lybaert (@MarijnLybaert) September 13, 2018
Marijn's deck might not be fully optimized, but any sort of Turn 2 combo deck has a chance of being successful in Modern, even if it's more commonly a Turn 3 or 4 deck.
There are several unexplored cards for this archetype, like Infernal Plunge and Storm Entity, that haven't quite found the right shell. Maybe Runaway Steam-Kin is the card that pulls everything together.
Regardless, I'm more than happy to explore Nivmagus Elemental 2.0.
2. Unmoored Ego
Being able to choose any card is very impressive. Urza's Tower, Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle, and even basic lands aren't safe.
Others have cited this as being too slow against some decks, and while I agree, it's not like Dimir wouldn't also have a counterspell or discard spell in the early game. It's your job to slow them down enough to resolve Unmoored Ego.
I haven't had the urge to sleeve up Grixis in Modern for a while, but this is a good incentive.
And it drives me insane.
First of all, UU is miles different than 1U. You might think that Cryptic Command is easy, but you're still paying a cost to make 1UUU doable, and it doesn't even work every time! Using Snapcaster Mage on an Opt or Serum Visions on Turn 3 is a common play, but good luck using Mission Briefing for that purpose.
The body matters. Many games are won purely on the back of Snapcaster Mage attacks, especially in Lightning Bolt decks. Blocking is huge, as is the ability to attack planeswalkers. Surveil 2 isn't worth a card, but a 2/1 body definitely is.
Cards like Recoup and even Regrowth are only as good as the things they are returning. Compare Eternal Witness to Recollect - one sees a decent amount of play and the other sees zero. The synergy with Cryptic Command should be worth playing the body instead, even though it comes up 5% of the time.
Mission Briefing will see play in Modern, but it will almost never be correct to do so. Storm could probably use it in part of their Gifts Ungiven package, but they could have already been using Snapcaster Mage and don't! Any other deck would be happier to have access to the 2/1 body and less prohibitive mana cost.