June 18, 2015

Modern Ad Nauseam


GP Charlotte is in the books and the Top 8 decklists are among the most diverse lists I've seen in a long time. Sure, we had our usual contenders like Blue-Red Twin and Burn, but we also saw decks like Elves and Goryo's Vengeance. Today's deck is a combo deck from that same Top 8 and is one of the purest forms of combo decks in the Modern format. Ad Nauseam doesn't play any win conditions besides its combo. Most Modern Combo decks, like Twin or Abzan Company, can win using their various combos but can win by attacking too.

So how does this deck work? A list such as this one is very hard to interpret on paper. There are no creatures, some mana ramp, and a bunch of cards that prevent you from losing the game. So what does this deck do? To start off, you need a way for you to go below zero life without dying, like Angel's Grace and Phyrexian Unlife. Once you can't lose the game, your next step is to cast Ad Nauseam. Since you can't die from going below zero life, Ad Nauseam allows you do draw any number of cards you want. Generally, when you resolve this spell, you will draw your entire deck. Once your deck is in your hand, your next step is to cast Lightning Storm. Simian Spirit Guides give you the three mana you need to cast this spell, and from there you can discard all of your land cards to deal lethal damage to your opponent.

This combo is pretty consistent but relatively easy to disrupt. Your mana ramp is very important so artifact kill spells like Ancient Grudge really hurt you when you're relying on Pentad Prisms and Lotus Blooms. On the other hand it's pretty hard to attack this deck with counterspells when you have access to Pact of Negation.

Darien Elderfield’s Ad Nauseam

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