This past weekend we in the magic community were treated to not one, but two Modern Grand Prix’s. All eyes fell on Kobe and Copenhagen, to see what new innovations could be made to the format thanks to Amonkhet, and who would have their arms raised in victory. I was especially interested in the goings on in Kobe. As a budding brewer, I was very interested in some of the unique takes on the existing deck, such as Takeshi Kagawa’s Affinity deck featuring a copy of Collected Company, and new brews such as Masakatsu Imai’s Battle of Wits, containing 300 cards (yes you heard me right).
So, as you can imagine there was no lack of decks for me to cover today. While I was tempted to delve into Masakatsu brew, or cover Joe Soh’s winning White/Black Eldrazi (which I am very tempted to build), none of them really jumped out at me. Then I had a look at Fridays Grand Prix Trail winning decks, and I found a sweet brew by one Kan Takayama. So let’s drive right in and have a look at 8Moon.
Much in the same way 8Rack gets its name from the eight rack effects it runs, and 8Whack has eight bushwhackers, the name of this deck comes from the eight copies of Blood Moons it runs. While four of these come in the form of Magus of the Moon, it still means the likelihood of drawing one of them is far higher than most red prison decks that only run the enchantment and not the creature. This places the deck in a strong position given the current meta. With a large number of Abzan Company and three colour Death’s Shadow decks in the format, as well as the increased popularity of Eldrazi Tron, Blood Moon has ended up been one of the best maindeck hate cards to run.
However, unlike most other prison decks such as Skred Red and Blue Moon, Kan Takayama’s build takes a very different approach. Full playsets of both Eidolon of the Great Revel and Harsh Mentor, provide almost a hate bear play style to the deck, punishing opponents two damage at a time. Simian Spirit Guide allows for turn one or two Blood Moons, quickly shutting down some decks. Kan also includes a playset of Sin Prodder, which can provide card advantage or extra damage if your opponent doesn’t like what you are going to draw. Lastly we have a couple of win conditions, with the wombo combo Goblin Rabblemaster and Hellrider, which can effectively ping your opponent for one or more damage a turn, and the now classic Nahiri, the Harbinger into Emrakul, the Aeons Torn.
For the non-creature cards, we see a playset of Lightning Bolt, as well as the obligatory Blood Moons. Kan also ran a single copy of Leyline of Sanctity to protect against early game hand attack, as well as stopping decks like Storm and Burn from getting in a strong game one. Twenty lands make up the mana base, with a good mix dual lands and a sway of fetch lands to go and find them and the Mountains. The sideboard contains many of the necessary hate cards needed to fight off the tier one decks, such as Rest in Peace and Grafdigger’s Cage to target graveyards, as well as By Force, Shattering Spree and Stony Silence for dealing with Artifacts.
2 Dead // Gone
1 By Force
And there you have it, a fun brew to consider for your next modern event. Although the deck didn’t make it to the Top 8 of the Grand Prix, it’s success at Fridays GPT marks it out as no slouch. What was your favourite deck from this weekend? Have you been inspired to brew something for the modern format? Either way, this past weekend has proved some great moments for us of the Magic community. Personally, it has got me buzzed for playing some more Modern, preparing for our domestic Grand Prix in Birmingham. Who knows, I might have to try some of this past weekend’s brews out at my local game store. So, until next time, Good Luck, and Have Fun!