I Play While You Watch
Last time, we explored the basic strategy of the Taking Turns deck. In drawing extra cards while taking extra turns, we are able to playing Magic while our opponents watch.
In this article, we will show you the rest of the deck that acts as pseudo extra turns spells in order to get you to the late stage of the game and into combo zone. We will then go through why this deck is a contender against the top decks in the current Modern meta-game.
Pseudo Extra Turns
Gigadrowse is very versatile as it can tap lands during the opponent’s upkeep to deny any big plays, tap creatures to hold off attacks, or tap all mana sources at the end of your opponent’s turn to go into your turn without any fear of countermagic.
Pairing Gigadrowse with Exhaustion can give you yet another turn. You still pass to the player sitting across from you, but when they were all tapped-out before, it is unlikely that they can make any meaningful play with limited resources.
In match-ups in which you face high costed spells, Primeval Titans or Eldrazi for example, Remand denies your opponent a whole turn when timed just right. They tap-out, don’t advance their board, while you don’t even lose card advantage. That’s tempo!
Rounding out the main deck, we have Modern allstar Snapcaster Mage who gets back Time Warp or any other utility spell you might need, while also providing a 2/1 body for combat that can do serious damage during your combo.
Cryptic Command lets you answer pretty much any threat - it taps creatures, counters big spells, bounces troublesome permanents like Liliana of the Veil and Thalia, and digs through your deck.
The biggest player out of the sideboard is Thing in the Ice. It helps out by blocking against fast creature decks, creating a huge tempo swing after transforming, and winning the game in short order paired with some extra turns without needing the full combo.
Reasons to play Taking Turns
Why should you play this weird deck though? It certainly isn’t one of the top meta-game decks and isn’t seen as often as one of Modern pillars like Burn or Affinity.
Firstly: It’s a very fun, rewarding, and skill-intensive deck to pilot. You have to defend yourself against all the decks in Modern just to survive the first few turns. Once you manage to do that, comboing off isn’t trivial either. You always have to work towards finding the next turn spell or figure out how to survive without one.
Secondly: This deck beats up big mana decks. If you have a strong disliking towards the polarizing Valakut and Tron decks, this deck is a good choice. Remanding a big spell feels just as good as casting Exhaustion on a tapped-out opponent. They usually barely have any answers to what you’re doing, so there’s nothing to fear from them.
Lastly: Attacking from a different angle will leave many staple cards useless. Removal spells will rot in your opponent’s hand and lots of discard can be recouped with a few Howling Mines and Dictates of Kruphix.
With a lesser known deck, you’ll also surprise many players with your card selections. Your sideboard cards might win you games when they catch your opponents off-guard, while they themselves will be unsure of what to board in against you.
We hope you enjoyed this edition of Modern 101 because we love this deck and are sure some of you will too! Have fun playing Magic while your opponents watch.
Written by Malte Smits