Are Uro And Omnath Modern’s New Destructive Duo?

Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath and Omnath, Locus of Creation are a deadly Modern duo, but other options abound. Seven SCG creators say what they’d play.

Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath, illustrated by Vincent Proce
Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath, illustrated by Vincent Proce

Welcome to What We’d Play! With the recent introduction of Zendikar Rising, many are unsure what they’d play in Modern. That’s where we come in and let you know what we’d play and why we’d play it. Hopefully this advice aids in your decision making for your next Modern event!

Ross Merriam — Selesnya Company

I’ve been on a Death and Taxes kick recently in Modern, but I think that deck’s time in the sun has come to an end. You can definitely still win with the deck if you’re well-practiced, so if you really want to play it go ahead, but the metagame has reacted to it and Death and Taxes isn’t flexible enough to react back and maintain its same position.

Instead I’m moving onto Selesnya Company, a deck that I think has been underrated recently. There are a ton of decks, like Rakdos Death’s Shadow or Humans, that can’t beat infinite life right now, and the addition of Conclave Mentor makes the Heliod, Sun-Crowned combo with Walking Ballista much easier to pull off. Even though you often need a lot of different pieces, Collected Company, Eladamri’s Call, and Ranger-Captain of Eos you have plenty of ways to access those pieces quickly.

The other issue with the Heliod-Ballista combo was one of mana efficiency, and that problem is mitigated by the addition of Arbor Elf and Utopia Sprawl instead of more traditional mana creatures like Noble Hierarch and Birds of Paradise, not just because the combination of the two produces four mana instead of three, but also because Sprawl lives a lot more often in the face of Lava Dart, Fatal Push, etc.

This deck is powerful, proactive, resilient, and best of all doesn’t have a huge target on its back. Many players assume their normal suite of removal will serve them well against creature combo, but you can navigate around unprepared opponents with relative ease. Just be sure to get your APM up so you don’t run afoul of the MTGO clock.

Shaheen Soorani — Four-Color Control

Modern is in a great place right now for those who are fans of powerful interactions.  I do not mean interactions between a player and their opponent, which are limited at best, but the interactions between the strong cards of the format.  Omnath, Locus of Creation and Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath form an unbreakable bond that dominates the midrange, control, and ramp decks of the format.

It would be a tough sell to play anything that does not include this pair, outside of the combo and aggro decks running around the format.  They work too well together, producing card advantage, ramp, and lifegain, on top of being fast clocks.  Tap-out control utilizes these creatures the best, having the ability to produce a planeswalker off the mana advantage with some to spare.  That spare mana is the resource for control’s disruption, which is vital in this new powerful age of Modern. 

The only decks that can tango with a monster like this are those that produce a ton of mana or that combo kill you.  Four-Color Control has the tools to stave off both of those threats, while mopping the floor with creature-based decks.  The choice in Modern is an easy one, and for once, it’s a control deck.

Ben Friedman — Mardu Death’s Shadow (Lurrus)

I still like Bomat Courier over Soul-Scar Mage. It’s better against the various control decks, but worse in the mirror match and against creature decks. I prefer to be naturally stronger against the heavily played (and by good players!) Uro piles and Azorius Control.

We’re also still splashing white for Path to Exile, but the option of playing Kozilek’s Return over it is still totally reasonable. Though the splash is pretty much free, Kozilek’s Return is a great way to synergize with Soul-Scar Mage and clear a battlefield of opposing Auriok Champions. I would be willing to return to straight Rakdos and lose Bomat Courier for Soul-Scar Mage, swap Feed the Swarm in over Wear // Tear, and drop Path to Exile for Kozilek’s Return. The advantage of the white splash is that Path to Exile is quite strong in the mirror match, as a permanent way to answer threats like Lurrus.

I’m happy that I cut Soul-Guide Lantern for Nihil Spellbomb, which is simply a stronger card. Cleansing Wildfire is still an awesome sideboard card, especially with Path to Exile. Your opponent will run out of basic lands eventually!

Lava Dart is another card that would happily come back with a full suite of Prowess creatures, but without them, this card is underpowered and not necessary.

Dom Harvey — Four-Colour Copy Cat (Jegantha)

In Modern, there are lots of ways to tell the same joke — this is just one of many shells revived by Omnath, Locus of Creation. The card has bolstered the reactive blue decks built around Cryptic Command and Mystic Sanctuary, but Omnath’s own potential is more easily unlocked in a proactive strategy.

Four-Colour Copy Cat was hit hard by the loss of Arcum’s Astrolabe — not just crucial mana fixing but an important role-player alongside the deck’s combo pieces and planeswalkers — but Piotr Glogowski was able to take down a Modern Challenge on Magic Online with this iteration courtesy of Zan Syed and the deck’s future looks promising. The duo of Uro and Omnath is the perfect shot in the arm for a deck that lacked resilient threats and was prone to spinning its wheels without achieving anything if it couldn’t defend its combo.

This list replaces Syed’s Remands — a powerful and unique form of interaction but one that’s very weak in some matchups and out of place in a deck that wants to use its mana at sorcery speed — with Lightning Bolt, a nod to the dramatic resurgence of Humans in recent results. Sideboard choices like Engineered Explosives and Fiery Justice are made with this in mind too.

Ari Lax — Four-Color Copy Cat (Jegantha)

I’m going to take Cedric at his literal word today. The good news is this deck is offensive in so many ways I have many other topics to cover with it.

This deck is all cards that have been banned in other formats, plus some copies of Remand, Path to Exile, and Utopia Sprawl. It reminds me of the actual best Standard deck since Memory Jar: Twinblade. Every aspect of your gameplan is the best stuff to do in the format, and then you also have a combo. Even the sideboard is just the best efficient answer spread possible thanks to four colors of mana and fetchable Raugrin Triome.

I think the big advancement made from earlier lists is just playing a ton of Wrenn and Six. Force of Negation has condensed a lot of the linear space in Modern to decks that tend to run into the repeated ping issue.

I guess there was another big advancement for the slightly clunky, mana-hungry, sorcery-speed deck recently, but for that I’ll refer you to Cedric’s Tweet and just say I enjoy my continued employment with Star City Games.

Andrew Elenbogen — Humans

Modern has recently taken a sharp turn towards fair decks with Rakdos Death’s Shadow rapidly becoming the de facto best deck. Like most Death’s Shadow decks historically, it presents a combination of disruption and a fast clock that makes playing a combo deck unappealing.

But, like most historical Death’s Shadow decks, this one is quite vulnerable to Humans. Thalia, Guardian of Thraben makes their cheap spells and prowess creatures awkward. Reflector Mage handles their larger creatures, while making progress on the battlefield. That’s not to mention the fact that Humans has access to some of the best anti-Death’s Shadow options of any deck in Modern. Auriok Champion has protection from their library, Chalice of the Void locks out half of their spells, and Skyclave Apparition makes sticking a large threat nearly impossible for them.

Speaking of the Zendikar Rising three-drop, this card has really impressed me and is a major reason why I am recommending Humans today. The fact that opponents get a worthless vanilla creature when they remove it is such a huge upgrade from Banisher Priests of the past. In this deck, I have gone down to only one copy of General Kudro of Drannith with the expectation that I will frequently be sideboarding in all of my Skyclave Apparitions. That will keep my curve lean and prevent three-drop overload. I have also added a second Silent Clearing to ensure that casting the Kor Spirit will not be too difficult. I haven’t done it yet, but I definitely don’t think maindecking the card is out of the question.

Humans remains solid against Uro control decks and unfair combo decks such as Oops All Spells. I have also historically liked the deck’s matchup against Amulet Titan, which is one of the few combo decks that can realistically stand-up to Rakdos Death’s Shadow. Right now, I see little reason not to cast some small disruptive creatures in Modern.

Corey Baumeister — Four-Color Control

Bant Control featuring Field of the Dead was already the best deck in Modern pre-Zendikar Rising, so it only makes sense to jam some Omnaths into the deck and call it a day. I’m a big fan of just playing the broken cards in Modern and there really isn’t a card more broken then Uro. Whenever you get to pair this powerful Titan with fetchlands, it really elevates this card to another level.

With Four-Color Copy Cat and Rakdos Death’s Shadow both being very good decks at the moment, you really have to make sure you don’t have any cards in your deck that are really bad against either side of the spectrum. Counterspells and Path to Exiles are really the perfect catch-alls to the format and give you game against anything. Outside of the highly versatile cards in our deck, you also just get to kill people with your lands. Field of the Dead is the perfect card to just sit back on permission spells and let the Zombies do the heavy hitting.