Alex Hamilton: Devoted to the Company

Casey Laughman   June 1, 2017   Comments Off on Alex Hamilton: Devoted to the Company

Alex: Hold on Chicken Little, do you know what this means?
Chicken Little: That Modern is ruined?
Alex: No little buddy, it means some old friends are going to come back to fight the new menace!

If you have not been paying attention to Modern in the last few weeks then you may have missed the interaction between Vizier of Remedies and Devoted Druid.

Here is how it works:

Step 1: Have a Devoted Druid that is not summoning sick.

Step 2: Cast Vizier of Remedies.

Step 3: Make infinite green mana (actually an arbitrary large amount of mana because we need numbers in Magic; my personal preference is 42 billion)

Step 3a: You can do this because you can untap the Druid by putting a -1/-1 counter on it, however, because of Vizier’s ability, that one counter is reduced to zero counters. Note this does not work with Melira, Sylvok Outcast, because she is worded in a way that prevents -1/-1 counters from being put on the creature at all.

Step 4: This is where the decks begin to vary. The majority of them will have Duskwatch Recruiter so they can find their kill creature. Which creature really depends on the pilot, but the two main choices are Rhonas, the Indomitable or Walking Ballista (some have been experimenting with Kessig Wolf Run, but you might have some difficulty finding it with a Recruiter, Collected Company or Chord of Calling).

Now this gets a little more complicated when you do not have Recruiter, because then you would have to use either Collected Company or Chord of Calling.

Some of you might be saying “Alex, how am I supposed to kill someone with a Walking Ballista off of a Company or a Chord?” Well, that is why I prefer to rely on our new friend Rhonas. You can still win with Ballista through Company, but you need to hit an Eternal Witness to get back your Ballista.

Ballista Kill:

Counters Company, by Brad Carpenter, 1st place, SCG Classic, May 21, 2017


Rhonas Kill:
Counters Company, by Michael Steinecke, 8th place, Grand Prix Copenhagen, May 28, 2017


Jamming Knightfall and Counters together: (Note that I only included this list for reference; I do not recommend playing this.)

Vizier Knightfall, by Eli Kassis, 26th place, SCG Modern Open, May 28, 2017


Chicken Little: But Alex, you said some of our old friends were coming back. Who are they?
Alex: Oh, you know who they are…


Lightning Bolt 

Since the rise of Death’s Shadow, we have seen a drop in Lightning Bolts, but now there is a premium must-answer target for our favorite ‘93/’94 staple. It is because of this I think we will start to see people going back to that old Modern 50/50 deck, our old friend Jund.

Jund, by Reid Duke, 4th place, SCG Modern Open, May 28, 2017


Here is an old standby from one of the best players playing the game, and the one with the best hair, Reid Duke. (Editor’s note: Alex’s rankings of hair are his personal opinion and do not reflect the views of Nerd Rage Gaming.)

We don’t see the full four Lightning Bolts in Duke’s list, but it is more than we have seen in a while, so I will take it. Reid is definitely showing respect for the Druid match-up by even including a main-deck Grim Lavamancer.

Fatal Push

Now I know what you are thinking: “Alex, Fatal Push is new, and it never left.” Yeah, I know, but it still becomes more important.

Reid’s Jund list played a full set of Fatal Pushes, and as many of you know, the various flavors of Death’s Shadow will play four of it. This shows how important this card has become to Modern as a whole.

Now for these last two cards I’m sorta scraping the bottom of the barrel, but they are good when combined with other answers.

Grafdigger’s Cage

Sometimes you keep the board clean and clear and then they end of turn Collected Company and get the nuts — unless you have a Cage in play. This is supplemental to fighting the deck, not the combo; Cage can help take away their main ways to pull ahead from any deck trying to control their game.

I’m sure the best Grafdigger’s Cage deck is either Lantern Control or Bant Eldrazi, but I’m also sure that in good conscience, I can’t recommend playing either of these decks. Bant Eldrazi just does not have enough removal and Lantern is painful to play in a tournament.

Linvala, Keeper of Silence

This lady does one thing, but she does that thing so well. Turns out that when you put Cursed Totem on an efficient creature, it is very, very, very good. Linvala shuts down the combo all by herself. However, many decks do not play her, so she is likely relegated to being a mirror-breaker.

I hope this short look into the newest iteration of Collected Company helps you with your Modern testing. If you have any questions or have a different card you think beats up on the combo, please share it in the comments and I will reply when I can.

Happy spell slinging and I hope your next Modern event is a home run!

Alexander Hamilton is a grinder from Chicago who is well-known for his love of Legacy. However, if there is a competitive event in any format in the Chicagoland area, expect him to be there playing Magic and making terrible puns, and not necessarily in that order.