RG Valakut BBE Shift Modern Deck Tech Primer

RG Valakut BBE Shift Modern Deck Tech Primer







Hey guys, what’s up? Well, today I’m gonna talk about the RG Valakut, a deck I started playing around 1 year ago, but despite that, it brought me a lot joy in competitive Magic. With it, I was the winner of the Circuito Ligamagic 10 Modern, the largest so far and also finished 12th in the Grand Prix São Paulo 2018, just a match win short of a Top 8 and an invite to Pro Tour. Using the same deck swapping a few cards my friend and team mate Bruno Calazans also made 15th place in the same Grand Prix. Also on other smaller tournaments here in my city and in São Paulo too I was able to get some store prizes Why play with RG Valakut? The main reason is it is a deck extremely consistent and with a very difficult plan to interact by opponents.

It also packs enough speed and interaction to play toe-to-toe with most of the aggro, control, midrange or prision decks in Modern Matchups like UW Control, Tron, Mardu Pyromancer and Jund are pretty good It’s big headache are combo decks like Ad Nauseam, Storm, KCI and Griselbrand, matchups near to impossible to win. Besides those, decks with very explosive starts, like 8Whack, Hollow One, Bridgevine are also pretty bad matchups, despite being a bit more winnable. That means, just like any other Modern deck Valakut is one with good, even, bads, favorable and unwinnable. Other reasons to pick Valakut are the learning curve, which is very simple, and it being cheaper since Scapeshift’s reprint and addition of other cards like Bloodbraid Elf made it a lot more accessible to players. Wait no more, let’s dive into the list I have been using on Magic Online Well guys this is the list of Valakut that I use on MTGO with 27 lands some lists go down to 26, I’ve even seen up to 28 but I consider 27 the ideal number.

With that amount you can hit important land drops in the early game It is very important you’re always able to play a land from your hand too to reach a critical amount of lands on a timely manner. The three basic forests are very important so you do not fall victim to Ponza or UR Moon or even UW with many Field of Ruin so you don’t risk not being able to fetch and lose some value when being disrupted. The ramps are the standard ones. 4 Sakura and 4 Search for Tomorrow are a must, the supplemental are the 4 Farseek because this is the ramp making it easier to ramp to a BBE on turn 3 which is one of the plays that this version aims to do Growth Spasm, Explore and Wood Elves are cards I’ve already used and they appeal to me in different degrees, but they do not cast BBE on turn 3.

Khalni Heart and Prismatic Omen are other good support cards but suit better a version more focused on ramp as they are more situational and end up not fitting well the more generic plan of all the cards have their own value and are good cascade hits. But Sandoiche, you’re very deep on the BBE plan with many choices on that direction thinking of Cascade mechanic and yet still use 2 Summoner’s Pact besides the risk of flipping it. The versatility provided by Pact is with no comparison with other options such as other low cost ramps or Hour of Promise Also, with Pact, we have access to virtual extra copies of any relevant creature from the sideboard, or even a quick access to an extra land on play on the kill turn. And here I would like to point out the question of the four BBEs that many players choose not to use it is a matter of raw POWER LEVEL above consistency. We’re already one of the most consistents on Modern so I think you can do it this sacrifice in terms of choosing BBE and keep the power level on the high end It is a stronger and more unfair play when you make a BBE flip a ramp and proceeds to Primeval Titan the next turn or flip a removal/sweeper and be able to control the field nd trade with another ground creature.

Averagely, when you play several matches, the odds you flip a bad cascade evens up with the times that you get the most phenomenal cascade ever, the only way to get you out of trouble Her being a good attacker also helps putting the opponent down to 17 life, in a reach of lethal Scapeshift on seven lands. 4 Bolts and one of each sweeper I believe to be the minimum necessary for you to play in a metagame with Humans, Spirits, and other creature based decks where the removals are pretty good. Besides that, 4 Titans and 4 Shifts are the least I consider to be enough to close the game reliably after ramping on the early game since they are cards that by themselves win the game. For thise reason I don’t like Hour of Promise very much despite being a heavier ramp card, it is only a good support card that your opponent can allow to resolve, considering if you don’t have anything else it won’t win alone while Titan and Shift will win by themselves.

The sideboard seems a bit weird in numbers when we talk hate cards for the matchups, but a good chunk of that is Valakut is a very good engine deck, making its own game against opponents at similar speed or slower and can proceed to a transformative side with fatties and removals against decks packing little creatures. The almost no hate for combos is simply because those matchups are really, really bad and I don’t think it is worth to splash white for Rest in Peace or Stony Silence or black for Slaughter games because it ruins our consistency to face the Modern field as a whole. Unfortanely, if it reaches a point where the metagame is only combos, or even Modern itself becomes combo-centric, it is time to leave the Good Old Valakut at home and bring something more fitting to the metagame, like I have done on other occasions.

But it is very important we keep our eyes on cards that might be flexible slots, coming back and forth on my sideboard one of those cards that keep coming in and out are Thrun, against UW, Jeskai, UR Moon, Roast against Gurmag decks like Hollow One and DS Witchbane Orb, if I expect to face Mirrors, Burn or Storm Beast Within against mirror, Tron Amulet Titan, Company decks. Chandra, torch of defiance is very good against Prision, Controls and even Eldrazi Decks. Crumble to Dust if you expect to face many Tron, Amulets and even UW Control. A card that ended up being out of this list but is one that I really like is Pia and Kiran Nalaar. It is one of the best cards against conventional Affinity and Infect as well being a good threat against control leaving three bodies. It also works against creature decks like Spirits, Humans and Taxes, acting as chump blocker, split removal, and can also generate absurd value if you have a Tireless Tracker on play, along with her sacrificing the clues.

But when put against the wall and I needed slots, Pia was the card that was cut from main board to fit in a Reclamation Sage, a very versatile creature to destroy Leyline and Moon still at the game 1, something a few decks on Modern utilize, like Boggles and Mardu Pyromancer. One absence on the sideboard is the Engineered Explosives, a card that doesn’t go very well with BBE, but it is something that if you do not have the elf I consider it essential on our sideboard. Since it is an amazing card against many creature decks like Humans, and can even deal with problematic permanents even against UW like Snapcaster or Azcanta, or if you use Prismatic Omen, higher costed creatures or permanents, like when you are able to set an Explosives on 4. Well guys, this was my take on RG Valakut here on Sandoiche’s Grind.

Stay tuned, next video I will give you guys a sideboard guide for over 40 different decks! Don’t forget to LIKE this video, SUBSCRIBE on the channel to give us that much needed push! Remember: the grind must go on! See ya!!! .

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