Midnight Reaper is just a bad Grim Haruspex. The plus side is triggering on its own death, the downside is that pesky 1 life loss per card. If the deck didn't need Haruspex before, it won't need Reaper.
Sam Black talked about the archetype on a recent podcast (ProPoints) in relation to the new card Hunted Witness maybe giving the deck new legs since it now has more redundant pieces. His list looks very similar to the one you posted izzetmage, here was his rough list:
She seems okay, but at the same time, you've got Blood Artist and Cutthroat at two mana. Pumping the team, and being able to ping planeswalkers + creatures is pretty good, so in the Mardu build she could find a home.
However... It's non token creatures, so that's a massive downside. As well as that, being at three mana means that she can't be brought back with Return, and to bring her back with Rally costs five... She also dies pretty easily, and that's not ideal when you've just spent three mana on her. All in all, I'd say no, mostly because she doesn't trigger with tokens. That said, she is pretty powerful, and could totally be worth testing in mardu aristocrats!
Maybe it could be good over Path To Exile in the main as it can kill big creatures? Way more conditional, obviously, but its synergy with the rest of the deck could make it better. Path has always kinda felt like a necessary evil =P
I love priest, the design, the ability everything but this is infinitely worse than path if your goal is to kill big creatures. It's not even guaranteed you will kill what you want assuming you have jumped through all the hoops to even activate the ability. As a unique effect for the deck I could see it as a 1 of maybe but NEVER over real removal.
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Modern: BG eldrazi midrange BWG Abzan value evolution BUG BUG Midrange
The priest of forgotten gods slot was filled with 2 cartel Aristocrats and 2 Wall of Omens before. In play testing i found that the priest is actualy very great. He is a sac outlet (remember u can target yourself too for saccing three dudes then), disrupts the opponent and mana ramp + card draw. Sure he has to life on round. But then the Deck can accelerate very good.
Stitcher‘s supplier is a great new addition too (milling Lingering souls, midgame casting of return to the ranks etc.) Hunted witness + doomed traveler are very great sac fodder because u can sac the dude and immediately get a untapped white token for return to the ranks.
The sideboard tries to be synergistic with the main deck (want many creatures there). Leonin Relic warder is better than i originally thought. U can do the „trigger on the stack sac trick“ like sculler with him too and then get him back later with return for more value. Besides being faster than most other BW Aristocrats versions u have disruption with sculler and priest in the main board too.
So what do u guys think of my version? I have to admit that tron is a very very hard matchup.
After some early goldfishing with Priest of the Forgotten Hollows I've been impressed. Priest's need to tap makes it somewhat slow compared to a traditional sac outlet (and She encourages us to sac on our own turns to make use of her ability's floating mana), but she combines a sac outlet and drain effect while also keeping you at card parity with the opponent during the sac.
One early suggestion: I think the deck might benefit from some Fetid Heaths to help filter Priest's BB into white mana so that you can cast a broader range of spells off of it. I might start with something like -3 Caves of Koilos, -1 Godless Shrine and +4 Fetid Heath.
The deck has some of the best redundancy of any I can think of (up to 8 Doomed Travelers, 8 Artists, 8 Sac Outlets, 8 Rally effects) and when you have a couple Artists on the Field, a stocked graveyard, and Return to the Ranks it gets pretty scary. The trouble is in consistently creating that particular game state early enough. And unfortunately there are so many clunky fail states with the deck: a board full of Doomed Travelers does almost nothing, the second and third+ sac outlets do almost nothing, a hand full of Return/Rally effects without a stocked GY does nothing, Blood Artists by themselves do almost nothing.
In my opinion the final thing the deck needs is some additional filtering or tutoring to help line things up. The CoCo + Satyr Wayfinder + Eternal Witness engine helped accomplish that in Abzan. Smuggler's Copter was an old suggestion of mine for Orzhov. More recently there's Mausoleum Secrets, which tutors up all creatures except the Doomed Travelers but unfortunately fails to tutor up Return to the Ranks, and is also rather tempo negative.
Thank you for mentioning fetid heath. I think it‘s better than the Caves of Koilos.
I think the deck doesn’t need green to work well right now. BW has all the tools for Aristocrats. In my opinion the best advantage of abzan was always that it’s faster because of the mana dorks available. Now with the Priest BW has a great tool of acceleration. In an earlier version I had Bob‘s in the deck. The are great too, but the priest is going to fit better.
You are absolutely right about the redundancy. In my experience viscera seer is waaay better than cartel aristocrat. The deck needs food for the train running and here viscera deer and priest are good for scry and draw. Even if u loose the priest u can still get her back with return.
Thought about Mausoleum secrets too. But I think it’s not good enough for the deck. Tested plunge into darkness in an earlier rally version. It‘s quite good and lets you dig for the missing pieces too. But again, no creature.
In the Sideboard i found no creature that could replace fatal push, it‘s just too good and in my opinion better than path in Aristocrats. Now it’s even better because with the black mana the priest could better fire of in opponents turn. Then I could use the mana for Fatal Push
In my opinion the best advantage of Abzan was always that it’s faster because of the mana dorks available. Now with the Priest BW has a great tool of acceleration.
Having mana acceleration in black is definitely exciting but the format speeds up over time and I think this deck needs all the acceleration it can get -- Birds + Priest together is not a bad place to be at all.
Having 5-6 mana T3 or 7-8 mana on T4 lets you do some nutty things. For example, in goldfishing so far I hit the curve of T1 Bird, T2 Priest, T3 CoCo, T4 E-Wit from hand to return CoCo -> activate Priest, re-cast CoCo, sac out for lethal.
The difference in tempo between the Abzan and Orzhov version is night and day IMO. So far the Abzan build has goldfished more T4 kills that I thought possible for a durdely Aristocrats deck . Saytr Wayfinder as copies 4-8 of Stitcher's Supplier is a big deal for consistency, CoCo helps you find missing combo pieces and also acts as insulation against graveyard hate.
The only thing I'm not sure on is whether Rally or Return is better in this build. Rally is better with E-Wit (3 CMC), but you become more dependent on finding a Viscera Seer since a Rally'd Priest lacks haste to tap before it's exiled.
Orzhov certainly has some big benefits with more consistent, painless mana. And Lingering Souls is a hell of a card. Both strategies certainly deserve another look with the recent cards.
Sure. Abzan will be faster no question. But as u said against aggro Decks (Burn, Zoo, Elves etc.) u will have more Problems because of the increased fetch, shock and u don’t want to chump block with the mana dudes. And then there is perhaps no room for Tidehollow sculler. The card is imho very good and as Aristocrats have naturaly problems against combo, he can help there in the main.
Priest and Rally works. The rally exile is at the beginning of your next upkeep. Then the priest can activate it‘s ability in response to the exile trigger, no summoning sickness anymore, to get at least three dudes in the yard... but yeah, u have to wait till your turn again
Another problem of CoCo + mana dorks: returning or rally is a little bit weaker then: u have more non-creature cards in the deck and returned doomed traveler/witness has more value than returning a mana dude (and they have summoning sicknes then too)
There was a 5-0 posted recently for a Mardu Aristocrats list. It's technically more of a Mardu Humans aggro list, stripping out combo elements like Viscera Seer / Blood Artist / Rally and instead borrowing some of the most successful elements of traditional Humans lists -- Champion / Lieutenant beats + Thalia GoT / Freebooter interaction. Tithe Taker is an interesting middle ground as he's a taxing human for the aggro half but also has afterlife for the aristocrats half. Finally, they added Judith and Falkenrath as a top end and replaced Reflector Mage with Bolt + Path.
Compared to traditional Humans the deck loses out on Vial so its tempo ceiling is a bit lower, the loss of Meddling Mage makes combo more difficult, and having a top-end of Falkenrath Aristocrat opens you up to Path to Exile. On the other hand it looks more resilient to destruction-based removal, and I think it has the potential to be as fast if not ~1/2 turn faster than Humans thanks to Judith, Falkenrath, and Bolt. With "only" a 3-color manabase it also has a much greater ability to play non-creature spells, including strong SB cards such as RIP.
CKL has some matches recorded here. It looked decent in action, and most of the building decision seemed sound. Of course, knowing myself, I'm awfully tempted to muck it up a bit and add in a few more Aristocrat elements, maybe a few Priest of the Forgotten Gods.
I think the Deck is a Little Bit to Slow. Tested bloodsoaked Champion a lot, the 2 mana was a little bit to cluncky.
And u don’t have a nice finisher card like Rally the ancestors or return to the ranks. I would cut the bloodsoaked and the point removal and would add a few Priests of forgotten gods and Rally the ancestors, perhaps adding a few drainers for more pay off when creatures are dying
With my list I posted above I finished a 83 people modern event with 7th place. Priest of forgotten gods is just awesome! You should test it
Thought about your list again: don’t know of it’s Perhaps too much of a mix between beat down and aristocrats elements. Aristocrats it’s strong because of many creatures dying and creatures who profit of creatures dying (like blood artist, Zulaport, Judith etc.) i could see Judith as a nice addition to aristocrats, but never tested her. And don’t underestimate Rally or return to the ranks. These cards often end the games on the spot... but it’s hard to get a Falkenrath back with rally, 6 mana is a lot. Usually u want to cast it for 4 mana, max. 5.
viscera seer is very strong too, because it lets u dig for the next rally or return
Why would you choose either Return or Rally as a finisher in this current meta with so much gy hate over say Butcher of hordes/Noble?
(When testing I was side-boarding out the gy package almost every game 2, admittedly I was also enjoying putting it back in game 3)
I have been so impressed with your list! I’m only playing causal tournament practice games on mtgo with it but the build is consistently impressing me with its resilience. The incidental life gain is real in this meta. I have won through Rest In Peace white leyline runic halo. Admittedly the deck seems to be very weak to blood moon :(. Moving forward are you planning on adding in the new drainer? What would you cut? The priest?
That sounds good
Yeah i‘m thinking about to cut the tidehollow scullers for the new Cruel Celebrant. The idea of 12 drainers is very spicy. And i think 12 of them are realy strong if u...
1. don’t cut sacrifice fodder
2. don’t cut the sac Outlet
Because u want many dudes to sac if u have multiple drainers in the mainboard.
So i think celebrant vs sculler the upsides are:
1. more drain/Aristocrats power
2. better in the mainboard versus Burn and aggro Decks like humans/elves etc (there u are in chump Block mode
1. Aristocrats decks are weak against combo. The Sculler reduced the weakness. With no scullers in the main against decks like ad neuseam or storm etc. u are going to have big problems
2. viscera seer into sculler sac is a nice Opening. U loose that
I think it’s about personal taste. I would not recommend to cut the Priest (my experiences with the Card are awesome)
Overall u could say that celebrant vs sculler the Problematic matchs are going to be even more problematic and the good matchups are going to be more easy. Perhaps the downside could be a little compensated because faster kills are possible
I used to play aristocrats back in Innistrad standard. I always wanted to play it again in modern. Here is what I was thinking. I like the synergies with morbid and human tribal. Please let me know what you think.
I tested the High Priest. I felt it was too slow. Perhaps replace them with fiend Hunter (u can do the sac trick with the hunter like sculler). And don’t underestimate the power of recursion spells like Ranks or Rally. I would add these cards and delete the path. Lingering souls could be replaced with more humans like zulaport or thalias Lieutenant to get more synergy. Souls dont have synergy with rally (if u would dedice to Play that).
No recursion spells could be ok if u decide to do more beat down than drain.
I personaly like more the drain kill Plan of Aristocrats. Your Deck is something between drain and beat down.