Generally after a season ends I take a couple of weeks to chill out on the spike plan. I try out some new decks and see if I like the way they work. Every now and then I try to play a deck or concept of my own. I once considered myself a great brewer. Those days are mostly gone now, but this is the time when I can take a swing at it again. I think one of the great things about magic is that there are so many different ways to enjoy the game. Playing is just one of those ways.

Modern has become my favorite format, and at the same time my albatross. My last four tournaments have yielded me 3-1, 3-1, 0-4 and 2-2. That’s 8-8 for those of you with an abacus. So frustrating! Just as I think I’m making real progress I find that I’m getting the same bad match-ups (Lirek’s Azorius Midrange in the first round two tourneys in a row) and losing to decks that I hadn’t accounted for. (Who plays mono red burn!?) So now looking at my Gifts deck, I know I could tune it to which ever metagame I wanted to play against. But it’s a deck I know how to play and I’m not learning anything with it, aside from that if you remove Kitchen Finks from the 75, you are guaranteed to play an aggro/burn deck.

This week I’m gonna try something a little different. I started by looking at American Control and American Midrange. Both are really strong decks. They have their focuses and are good at what they do. Personally, I find that the midrange deck is just a little more my taste. I’m not saying I’m giving up Durdling, I’m just saying that Twenty Sided Store’s current meta is no place to win on turn 25. I hate going to time more than I hate losing.

Here’s the way I see it. The current meta is Tron/Pod/UR Delver/Burn/UW Mid/RG Aggro/and a few other decks. All these decks run fetches. And many of them play lands you want to destroy. I’m playing four Shadow of Doubt and four Ghost Quarter. This could be totally wrong but with all the searching going on why not. It’s like playing with Stifle for an extra mana but you get to draw. At worst I’ve added four Cantrips into my deck that are useful if I cast Path to exile or Ghost Quarter a land. At best… Turn four as you crack your Misty Rainforest, “Shadow of Doubt, Ghost Quarter that land, and Path your Mana Dork.” Back breaking! You have 2 land I bricked your play that turn and I drew a card. Combined with both Remand and Manaleak, some Vendillion Clique, Geist of Saint Traft, Snapcaster Mage, Restoration Angel… All the non-sense that makes American Midrange an already good deck and this could be the next logical step.

Here’s my current list:

American Doubt

Lands: (24)
Scalding Tarn
Sacred Foundry
Faerie Conclave
Ghost Quarter
Hallowed Fountain
Arid Mesa
Steam Vents
Celestial Colonnade

Creatures: (11)
Geist of Saint Traft
Restoration Angel
Snapcaster Mage
Vendilion Clique

Spells: (25)
Spell Snare
Lightning Bolt
Lightning Helix
Cryptic Command
Path to Exile
Mana Leak
Shadow of Doubt
Sideboard (15)
Stony Silence
Sowing Salt
Supreme Verdict
Magma Spray
Counter Flux
Spell Snare
Sword of Feast and Famine

As you can see there’s definitely room for changes. I think that I’m running perhaps too much counter-magic but I’m not threat light. 24 Lands might be one short. I’ve kept my curve low and I think that I may want to board into a full clutch of Spell Snare in game 2 if I’m on the play. I’m gonna test this over the next couple of days and see what I like.

Detriot is coming up. I doubt I’ll make it, though. Financially, speaking it just doesn’t look like its in the (ugh worst pun ever) cards. And Antwerp is out as well. I’m 98% on DC. And I’d like to get in at least a couple PTQs and one other GP this season. I earned these two byes I really want to use them.

Zac Clark, Durdle Magus

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