U/R Control by mylast on MtGO

Creatures (8)
2 Pia and Kiran Nalaar
4 Snapcaster Mage
2 Vendilion Clique

Non-Creature Spells (30)
4 Serum Visions
3 Cryptic Command
2 Electrolyze
4 Lightning Bolt
2 Logic Knot
4 Opt
2 Spell Snare
2 Engineered Explosives
2 Relic of Progenitus
1 Blood Moon
4 Spreading Seas

Lands (22)
1 Desolate Lighthouse
4 Flooded Strand
7 Island
1 Misty Rainforest
1 Mountain
4 Scalding Tarn
2 Steam Vents
2 Sulfur Falls

Sideboard (15)
2 Blood Moon
2 Relic of Progenitus
1 Abrade
1 Batterskull
3 Ceremonious Rejection
1 Dispel
1 Izzet Staticaster
2 Kozilek’s Return
2 Surgical Extraction

Summary

U/R decks in Modern have gone through a bunch of iterations, mostly due to both colors being quite effective control tools for every given metagame iteration that Modern presents. Older versions were tempo-combo decks, while newer versions are prison-combo decks. However, the deck we’re featuring today aims to use similar cards to disrupt the opponent, but taking a longer term approach to the game.

Pia and Kiran Nalaar is a creature that has seen a fair uptick in Modern recently, and it certainly earns a spot here. At 4 mana it is somewhat expensive, but it has the ability to control the board on its own as well as providing a decent clock on a struggling opponent. Vendilion Clique is another potent threat that this deck provides, but it is much more focused on disrupting the opponent’s hand. At 3 mana, it strips the opponent of their best card and provides an evasive attacker that can end the game fairly quickly. To round the creatures out, Snapcaster Mage is critical to this deck’s strategy of countering and controlling the opponent out of the game, so unlike most Modern decks, this deck is very happy to have the full playset.

Much of this deck will resemble the U/R decks of Modern I touched on above. Serum Visions is still the most reliable draw spell in the format, Cryptic Command is still the most powerful and flexible counter spell in the format, and Lightning Bolt is still the most mana efficient removal spell option available to players. These cards are supplemented by Opt for more card selection, Logic Knot and Spell Snare for more counter magic, and Electrolyze as another removal spell that can be potentially backbreaking for some decks in this format.

Because this deck is only two colors, it’s forced to jump through some rather odd hoops to make a true control deck work. One of these hoops is mana disruption. While Blood Moon is still a very powerful card for this deck, Spreading Seas is the preferred option, as it’s cheaper, replaces itself when it lands, and can do quite a bit of disrupting itself. The additions of Engineered Explosives and Relic of Progenitus might seem odd on their surface, but both offer something that the deck is looking for. Explosives gives this deck access to sweeper-style removal for certain decks in the format, while Relic offers incidental graveyard hate while replacing itself.

Here are the changes I would make going forward:

Mainboard

-1 Opt

+1 Cryptic Command

Sideboard

-1 Dispel

+1 Negate

This is day 353 of Spellsnare.com’s 2017 Deck of the Day column, where each day we’ll feature a different Standard, Modern, or Legacy deck that caught our eye. You can read day 352 here, where we featured a Legacy deck that is very adept at gaining two-for-ones and valuing its opponents out of the game.

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