Next week is the real release of Jumpstart: Historic Horizons, and the metagame is definitely looking to shake up quite a bit. One of the decks that could pose a real challenge for the best deck is the Vesperlark and Davriel’s Withering. This 2 card combo creates an infinite loop that on it’s own can draw the game, or with an additional combo piece can win the game on the spot. We talked about one such deck here. This isn’t the only deck that looks to be fighting for top contender in the format as well. Many of them revolve around the graveyard. Today we’ll talk about those decks, and what cards you need to be playing next week.
One of the top decks in Modern is Rakdos Lurrus. This deck aims to take advantage of the quick start of Dragon’s Rage Channler and a bunch of cheap spells to win the game very quickly. This deck also plays Dreadhorde Arcanist to flash back our powerful spells to disrupt our opponent or force through damage.
Yet another Dragon’s Rage Channeler deck, Izzet Blitz wants to go fast with DRC, Soul-Scar Mage, and Stormwing Entity. There may also be versions playing Arclight Phoenix so graveyard hate is even more crucial.
Jeskai Control is one of the current top decks in the format, and it will most likely continue to be a top contender while the format is trying to find it’s footing. This deck’s main goal is to counter your spells, remove your creatures, and cast a Magma Opus or two. We look to take advantage of Mizzix’s Mastery or Torrential Gearhulk to cast Opus from the graveyard. The deck also has a dirty combo of Narset, Parter of Veils and Commit // Memory. If Narset is in play, and you cast Memory from your graveyard, Your opponent draws only 1 card from the Memory, effectively shutting them out of the game, while you get a full new hand.
The Perfect Graveyard Hate For You
There’s a few different options that we have in the game that can deal with these decks handily.
1. Rest in Peace
The first card that we’d recommend is Rest in Peace. This card is great because it’s very cheap to play at 2 mana, and it’s a “set it and forget it” kind of graveyard removal. As long as this stays in play, you never have to worry about these graveyard strategies, and can then focus more on what other things the decks can do. It’s best to run multiple copies, 3 or 4 in the sideboard of week 1 Historic Horizons, to ensure that you can beat these decks.
2. Grafdigger’s CageGrafdigger’s Cage is another great option that’s a set and forget type of graveyard hate card. This being a 1 mana artifact means that it can slot in to any deck and can shut off a lot of these strategies. While it does not deal with Dragon’s Rage Channeler[/tooltip]’s static ability, it can target any of the Lurrus Decks and Vesperlark decks pretty handily.
3. Relic of Progenitus
One of the more recent additions to the format is [tooltips]Relic of Progenitus. Once a Modern staple, this card has found a nice home in Historic. Again with a cheap cost, this card has the ability to steadily remove cards from our opponent’s graveyard, but then if we need to dump the whole thing, we can do that, and draw a card as a bonus. This and Grafdigger’s Cage could be interchanged in sideboard depending on what you’re facing.
4. Scavenging OozeScavenging Ooze is the premier graveyard hate card for Green creature decks. This is a pretty common place staple in the format, and expect that this one will continue to be an all star against these other decks.
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Cards to Not PlayLeyline of the Void, while it may seem appetizing, is a card that I’d stay away from. None of the decks in the format scoop to this card right out of the gate, and if you don’t happen to have this in your opening hand, you have to decide how far down to mulligan for it. The only place I’d consider playing this would be in an Enchantress style deck where you benefit from having a free enchantment in play, and even then, I’d rather play Rest in Peace.
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