Deck Highlight: Modern Rakdos Midrange

Modern Rakdos Midrange by Willy Edel

Modern continues to evolve, even if Uro has its seaweed-scented fingers all over it. The latest evolution comes from Hall of Famer Willy Edel, who played greenless Jund, otherwise known as Rakdos, to a second place finish in last weekend’s Modern Challenge.

The Game Plan

Like actual Jund, this deck is looking to use discard and removal to stop the opponent from doing whatever it is they mean to do, while finishing with threats that pack a punch. Blood Moon adds an additional angle, as sometimes it can lock the opponent out by itself.

This deck gains a couple things by cutting green:

  • Better mana, including a less painful mana base.
  • Blood Moon, which you can’t play very easily in a three color deck.
  • A more reliable Kroxa, Titan of Death’s Hunger, which is one of the more powerful cards.

As sorry as we may be to lose Tarmogoyf and Bloodbraid Elf, this deck is not lacking for power and gets some new toys like Magmatic Channeler as a reward.

Key Cards

ThoughtseizeInquisition of Kozilek

The full eight-pack of discard is critical these days, as Modern keeps getting faster and faster. Plus, now that you have Magmatic Channeler and Seasoned Pyromancer, having a dead discard spell in hand isn’t a big issue.

Magmatic ChannelerSeasoned PyromancerKroxa, Titan of Death's Hunger

Speaking of which, the two discard outlets and the Titan are a big part of this deck’s card advantage plan. By cycling through excess lands or discard spells, the red creatures ensure you don’t run out of gas and Kroxa converts graveyard cards into a massive threat.

Blood Moon

Blood Moon is a one-card lottery ticket – sometimes you cast it and the game ends, and like I mentioned before, you have tools to discard it when it isn’t going to be good. I like Blood Moon right now, since there is a fair amount of Primeval Titan in the format.

DreadboreAbradeLightning BoltLiliana of the Veil

Rakdos definitely does removal well, and having access to all these efficient spells makes this deck perfect for creature matchups. Liliana is the three drop you want after killing their first couple plays, and pairs nicely with discard to boot.

Tips and Tricks

  • It’s way more efficient to discard Kroxa than cast it, so prioritize doing so with your various discard effects.
  • Seasoned Pyromancer draws you two cards regardless of how many cards you discard, so it’s very strong play if it’s your last card.
  • Liliana and Hazoret the Fervent are best buds, and if you curve into them after playing some discard spells, it’s not hard to be swinging for the fences on turn four.
  • If you have Thoughtseize and Liliana, it’s usually best to use Liliana first, as your opponent may make an ill-chosen discard without knowing you’re taking their best card afterwards.
  • The one Savai Triome means that Engineered Explosives out of the sideboard can go up to X = 3, which is just beautiful deckbuilding.
  • While this deck tends to take on a controlling role, you can beat down faster than you might think. Always be on the lookout for opportunities to start attacking with big Magmatic Channelers in order to burn the opponent out.

If you’re all about the Jund life, I encourage you to give this a spin. It’s fast, lean and has a ton of powerful cards that work well together.

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