Multiple combo decks have increased in popularity thanks to a handful of Wilds of Eldraine cards. In Legacy, we’ve seen Beseech the Mirror utilized in Storm shells alongside Gaea’s Will. In Modern, Yawgmoth, Thran Physician combo saw an uptick in popularity thanks to the new dynamics that Agatha’s Soul Cauldron brought to the table.
Recently, we went over a few different combos in various Constructed formats associated with Agatha’s Soul Cauldron. While Yawgmoth combo in Modern started to utilize Cauldron, it wasn’t making much of a splash in Pioneer or Standard. At least, that was until late last week, when there was an enormous Arena event with over 500 players! After nine rounds of Swiss, one player playing an infinite combo built around Cauldron ended up with seven wins. This is quite a strong showing, especially for an archetype that has been relatively unexplored. This deck has a lot going on, so let’s start by looking at how the combo itself actually works.
Executing the Combo
The combo this deck has access to involves three specific cards. First, you need a copy of Agatha’s Soul Cauldron in play. Second, you need a copy of Kami of Whispered Hopes on the battlefield that doesn’t have summoning sickness. Finally, you need a copy of Sleep-Cursed Faerie in your graveyard. Once you have this assembled, you can generate infinite mana!
By exiling Sleep-Cursed Faerie from your graveyard with Cauldron, you can put two +1/+1 counters on Kami of Whispered Hopes, due to Kami’s triggered ability. Kami is now a three-power Creature, meaning you can tap it for three mana of any color. Thanks to Cauldron, it also has Sleep-Cursed Faeries ability, letting you untap Kami by spending two mana. From here, you can simply keep tapping Kami to make three mana, using two of that mana to untap Kami, and repeating this process.
Winning the Game
Once you have infinite mana, this deck needs a couple more cards to win the game on the spot. The easiest way to accomplish this is by utilizing Sheoldred, the Apocalypse and Faerie Mastermind. With infinite mana, you can activate Faerie Mastermind over and over, forcing each player to draw cards. This alone can win the game, but only if your opponent will run out of cards in their deck first.
With Sheoldred in play, though, your opponent will lose two life every time they draw a card, making Faerie Mastermind’s activated ability a reliable win condition. What’s nice about running these cards instead of a traditional mana-sink like Light up the Night is that both Sheoldred and Faerie Mastermind are solid cards on their own. Comboing is not necessarily required for this deck to win. Agatha’s Soul Cauldron can grow your fliers over time, and Sleep-Cursed Faerie is a fine card to play turn one with the intention of just beating down with it.
With regards to the combo, however, it does take a decent number of resources to actually pull off. Luckily, this deck has a few tricks up its sleeve to help find the necessary combo pieces. To help fill your graveyard and dig for Cauldron, the deck plays both Wasteful Harvest and Fallaji Archaeologist. Both of these cards not only help find Cauldron, but can potentially mill over Sleep-Cursed Faerie to be exiled later. Milling cards also helps improve Cauldron naturally by providing extra Creatures to exile. Getting to distribute counters to your Creatures throughout the course of the game can be strong, especially given the number of Fliers this deck plays.
Speaking of Fliers, one of the strongest cards in the deck that helps tie everything together is Likeness Looter. Looter is an interesting card that fills multiple roles in the deck. First of all, it can dig for missing combo pieces and discard copies of Sleep-Cursed Faerie or excess copies of Agatha’s Soul Cauldron that might not be super useful. Additionally, though, Likeness Looter has the ability to become a copy of any Creature in your graveyard. This means that if you previously milled over Kami of Whispered Hopes or had one of them killed, you can use Looter’s ability to copy Kami. Copying Sheoldred can be quite powerful too.
Strengths and Weaknesses
As a combo deck that requires a lot of pieces to pull off, this deck is bound to have weaknesses, however. Basic removal spells like Go for the Throat can be a bit of a pain. While Agatha’s Soul Cauldron can help speed up your clock a bit by putting +1/+1 counters on your Creatures, most of your Creatures are pretty small on their own. Both Kami and Fallaji Archaeologist have zero power, for example.
Without finding Sheoldred, it’s also quite possible you can generate infinite mana and not have much to do with it. The good news, though, is that this deck’s plan b is reasonably effective. While Kami and Archaeologist don’t provide much pressure, Sleep-Cursed Faerie does. Against some decks, such as five-color ramp, playing a couple Faerie Creatures early and backing them up with Counterspells can be enough to cross the finish line. Kami can also be used to simply accelerate Sheoldred out turn three, which can be quite effective against aggressive decks.
Agatha’s Soul Cauldron can help a lot against opposing midrange decks. Getting to continuously grow your Creatures is powerful, and so is giving them extra activated abilities. Getting to give a copy of Fallaji Archaeologist Likeness Looter’s abilities can be quite strong, for example. Overall, this deck has more potential than we initially thought. There’s still plenty of room for exploration, and it’ll be cool to see if this combo continues to put up results.
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