For Grand Prix Oklahoma City I’ve spent a lot of time trying to Through the Breach for wins in Modern. I may or may not be typecast as a Through the Breach player for Modern! https://www.massdrop.com/talk/1895/breaching-into-grand-prixBut hey, if you love to cast Through the Breach I can help you out with my love and frustrations trying to carry the fun torch of an alien or a whatchamaDrazi breaching through the portal!
UR Breach Control
Lately I have been trying something different from Primeval Titan and Valakut. I’ve been playing a decent amount of UR Breach, which utilizes cheap card draw to smooth out the first few turns as well as having early removal against creature decks with Lightning Bolt and Snapcaster Mages. This version of this breach deck can also win games solely with Blood Moon.
The UR Breach deck plays out very differently than the GR Breach deck that I was used to playing. We are a Blue Moon control shell with a combo finish. Although our finisher is very strong, you still need to set up the game to the point where the combo can kill them or devastate their board enough for you to draw the last few points of damage to finish the game. Sacrificing six permanents or dealing fifteen damage is good but isn’t always enough.
The Strength of Blood Moon
I do feel Blood Moon is very well positioned in this current modern metagame. You also gain a huge edge every game one having Blood Moon when your opponent doesn’t play around it. Blood Moon in combination with Spreading Seas can also just close out games if your opponents are trying to play around the “bloody enchantment”. I would try and save your Spreading Seas for an optimal target if you feel like Blood Moon is going to be back breaking in the matchup. After sideboard you can easily board down on Blood Moon knowing your opponent will make an effort to prevent getting locked out.
Blood Moonis a main reason why I have chosen to switch from a traditional GR Through the Breach to a more Controlling Blood Moon, Breach Control Deck. I feel like this card should be banned in modern and I guess I will join the Blood Moon train til the moon fades away!
You want to cut your more expensive spells against this aggressive deck and add a couple board sweepers along with some nice artifact removal. This setup is right where you want to be. Cryptic Command can be good at times but it can also sit in your hand and be a dead draw most of the games unless you can stabilize very early. I do think Blood Moon can be good most of the time to stop Inkmoth Nexus and Blinkmoth Nexus, but it can also line up poorly when you need to just stop their cards. I like to cut at least 1 Blood moon and the Pull from Tomorrow is an easy cut as this is another late game card that we do not want to have against Affinity in our early draws.
+1 Vendilion Clique
+1 Anger of the Gods
-2 Blood Moon
-1 Lightning Bolt
-1 Through the Breach
This match can be very easy if they do not resolve an early Geist of Saint Traft. You do have to watch your life total since they play a decent amount of burn spells. Blood Moon is very back breaking against this deck but it has risks when you cast it early. Tapping your mana opens you up to a resolved Geist, so be mindful to not be too aggressive. If you are pressuring them to answer your Blood Moon by following it up with a resolved Breach combo then by all means push the threats. I usually try to save Spreading Seas for their Celestial Colonnades but watch out for when they try to bounce your Spreading Seas end of turn with Cryptic Command to deal the last four with the creature land.
UR Gift Storm
+1 Vendilion Clique
+2 Anger of the Gods
+1 Izzet Staticaster
-1 Cryptic Command
-2 Spreading Seas
-3 Blood Moon
The Storm match up is a tough matchup post sideboard. They are bringing in Dispels and more Empty the Warrens to fight your counterspells. I have a good win rate versus this deck but if they resolve an early Empty the Warrens that is their easiest route to victory. Be mindful of when to kill their creatures, try and position yourself to where they have to burn extra resources in order to push a threat like Gifts Ungiven or Past in Flames. This is a matchup where casting end of turn Through the Breach is the main way you can resolve your combo. If you cast a Through the Breach at the end of their turn, the sacrifice the creature trigger doesn’t occur until the next end step which is your turn. I’ve also seen Storm lists that have Cyclonic Rift so be mindful of that spell as well.
5 Color Humans
+3 Anger of the Gods
+1 Izzet Staticaster
-2 Cryptic Command
The 5C Humans deck is a very popular deck as of late. Turn 2 Thalia, Guardian of Thraben is still pretty good last time I checked! Being on the draw against the Humans deck can be game over fairly quickly. Be sure to keep hands that have a decent amount of early interaction to fight off Thalias, Meddling Mages, or the aggressive Champion of Parish draws. I usually save my Lightning Bolts and do not kill their turn 1 Noble Hierarch. They have too many problematic creatures to waste a premium removal spell on their accelerator. You also get extra value by leaving the Nobles around post board when we have 3 Anger of the Gods. Depending on the version of the deck they only have 1 basic Plains, so try and save your Spreading Seas for that land so Blood Moon can deal with the rest. The humans deck does not gain much after board so our matchup should improve a decent amount. They do have an answer to our combo with an Aether Vial on 3 counters with Reflector Mage so just make sure to try and avoid that disaster.
The boogie man of the format. It is so hard to bring in cards or configure a deck that is great against this deck without giving up so many additional cards for other matchups. This matchup and Dredge are the main reasons why I want to take out the Emperion + Madcap Combo #Rantoff. The best way to for us to beat Shadow is to keep the board clean and hope that the early discard does not result into a super fast Death’s Shadow clock. We do have Remands to slow down their early Delve creatures. This matchup will always be close and they can always roll over any opponent with early Thoughtseizes plus a quick threat. They will most likely cut 4 Fatal Push for some Stubborn Denials and probably some Lilianas.
I’m leaning towards cutting the Madcap Experiment + Platinum Emperion package. Most of the matches that this combo is good against they already know it’s coming so they board in artifact removal and you can lose games solely on relying on the combo sticking. Tapping four mana only to get hit by Ancient Grudge is really bad. We can use those six open sideboard cards help out other matchups like Affinity, Dredge/graveyard decks or Blue control shells.
If you are wanting to cut the Platinum Emperion combo I would suggest adding a couple Young Pyromancers, Relic of Progenitus, or Engineered Explosives. I am a huge fan of Engineered Explosives based on how versatile the card is. It’s great against Death’s Shadow, Tarmogoyfs, Lantern Control, Humans and even Empty the Warrens Tokens. I feel like we could shave an Anger of the Gods for an Engineered Explosives if we are taking out the Emperion package to give us more game against a wider spread of the format. I do like the idea of Young Pyromancer out of the board since most matchups our opponents will take out early removal and we can punish them pretty hard with an early Young Peezy.
I am most likely going to run a list very similar to this at Grand Prix Oklahoma City. If you are intrigued or interested in playing UR Breach at your local store events or even the Grand Prix feel free to post in the comments below or contact me on Twitter.
This is Modern, almost anything is playable. The most important thing for myself or I believe for anyone traveling to Magic events is to have a fun time and treat your opponents with respect. This type of outlook will make you enjoy the greatest game in the world!
Scott “Spanky” Lipp