While I do enjoy writing about cutting edge decks, such as the one featured in yesterday’s article, many of you know me for my sideboard guides. For some time now I have released monthly sideboard guides for Modern Humans and I am happy to finally have a site to host them. This article will cover the ideas behind it but you can download a full PDF here. This contains thirty archetypes in one printer friendly page that you can legally bring to tournaments and look at between games.
The foundation of any deck is the manabase and what you see is standard for 5C Humans. You may see some players forego Island for an additional Seachrome Coast to help with Gaddock Teeg but he is not in our current list. The mainboard is very typical as well. The flex slot of choice is Militia Bugler which beats out Mayor of Avabruck due to the number of Gut Shots in the format. The sideboard is what has changed most due to recent developments. Many of these are the usual suspects but the standouts are Damping Spheres, Whirler Rogues, and a third Auriok Champion. Wet Ball has replaced Teeg as a result of the KCI ban. Teeg is now quite underwhelming outside of the UW Control matchup. Sphere acts as a legitimate hate card against Tron and Amulet while granting us points against the current top deck Izzet Phoenix. Whirler Rogue comes in at two copies because it is effective against control, midrange, and creature matchups. With Teeg gone we need that additional help against UW Control and Dredge. The third Auriok Champion was the final addition to the list. At times it was another Sin Collector, another Thalia, and even Venser. I have landed on a third Auriok Champion to combat the Burn list featured in yesterday’s article, the rise in Grixis Shadow, and the Dredge decks that are a natural foil to them both. We are in an uncertain metagame and I cannot say for certain if this is the correct choice for February but it is logically sound.
Top 8 Matchups
-3 Kitesail Freebooter, -2 Militia Bugler, -3 Thalia Guardian of Thraben
+2 Dismember, +2 Izzet Staticaster, +2 Knight of Autumn, +2 Whirler Rogue
Meddling Mage names: Collected Company, Path to Exile
Play: -3 Meddling Mage, -4 Reflector Mage
Draw: -4 Meddling Mage, -3 Reflector Mage
+3 Auriok Champion, +2 Knight of Autumn, +2 Sin Collector
Meddling Mage names: Searing Blaze, Lightning Bolt
-1 Kitesail Freebooter, -2 Militia Bugler, -4 Phantasmal Image
+3 Auriok Champion, +2 Izzet Staticaster, +2 Whirler Rogue
Meddling Mage names: Conflagrate, Cathartic Reunion
-4 Meddling Mage, -3 Phantasmal Image
+3 Auriok Champion, +2 Dismember, +2 Whirler Rogue
Meddling Mage names: Fatal Push, Lightning Bolt
-2 Militia Bugler, -4 Phantasmal Image
+2 Damping Sphere, +2 Dismember, +2 Sin Collector
Meddling Mage names: Thing in the Ice, Lightning Bolt
Play: -4 Meddling Mage
Draw: -4 Aether Vial
+2 Dismember, +2 Whirler Rogue
Meddling Mage names: Fatal Push, -Varies based on build-
Play: -2 Militia Bugler, -2 Reflector Mage
Draw: -2 Militia Bugler, -2 Thalia Guardian of Thraben
+2 Damping Sphere, +2 Knight of Autumn
Meddling Mage names: Oblivion Stone, Ugin the Spirit Dragon
-2 Thalia’s Lieutenant, -4 Reflector Mage
+2 Dismember, +2 Sin Collector, +2 Whirler Rogue
Meddling Mage names: Path to Exile, Terminus
At this time I only have one idea that I plan to test. In my Ravnica Allegiance review you may recall that I was disappointed that we could not consistently cast Deputy Doug with just six blue producing lands. However, it would be possible to do so by replacing a Horizon Canopy with an additional Seachrome Coast. Before the adoption of Teeg necessitated early green and white mana I actually advocated this manabase but he is currently not worth running. Furthermore, hands with multiple Canopy will often lose to any aggressive deck and are unable to cast Mantis Rider regardless of your third land. The deck also plays four times as many blue creatures as green creatures. So this manabase change is arguably a positive while also allowing us remove the underwhelming Izzet Staticaster for Deputy Doug. This would provide us additional outs to troublesome cards like Ensnaring Bridge and Thing in the Ice. It is worth noting that Knight of Autumn will be slightly more difficult to cast though. I will be testing this throughout February.
I hope that this guide will be of use to you throughout February. I do believe that Humans is very well positioned at the moment. If you have any questions or just need a place to share ideas, please come join our Facebook group. We will be back tomorrow to take a look at Eldrazi Stompy with accompanying gameplay. Until then my friends.