Infect, Like Punk, Is Not Dead


Solemnity by Greg Opalinski

“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”

Infect is not dead. It’s just transformed, like Madonna had to do to remain relevant. Right now, we’re in a lull but I doubt it’s for long. I found a spicy build online of Temur infect, goldfished it, tried it out a few times and came to some conclusions.

Take a look!

Mainboard Choices

What’s quite odd to get a feel for is how different this infect deck’s mana base is. I tried Pendelhaven but it doesn’t work with the three colors. The lack of fetchlands is also pretty odd feeling. There was a build floating around with all basic lands, but the minor improvement to Become Immense for a few fetchlands to shocklands felt necessary to me. Cracking a mountain off the top is a feel bad, but searching for Stomping Grounds felt great.


Traverse the Ulvenwald by Vincent Proce

Distortion Strike is my new best friend. Just know that it exiles itself and won’t count toward Become Immense. Just know that you have to make Inkmoth Nexus a creature ASAP on your turn.

Speaking of new besties. This behemoth frees up a sideboard slot for someone nullifying the infect plan AND provides a pump spell.

The Blood side of Flesh // Blood was the basis for an old deck try I did with R/G Infect and found it too slow and marginal to play. I didn’t consider free cycling abilities though with Become Immense back then though. That’s a deck-building error. It’s a relaxed cost with trample on Ghor-Clan Rampager, often resulting in infect in the 7-9 range and they think they’re safe. Windmill slam that split card and you have a surprise win. I haven’t encountered many Gifted Aetherborn for vampires, Wren’s Run Vanquisher for elves, or Venom Sliver for modern slivers to worry about yet.

Street Wraith and Mishra’s Bauble allow for a one-land hand keep, and it’s nerve wracking. I don’t love it, but I have found that a Traverse the Ulvenwald or Noble Hierarch often finds it’s way into one of the cyclers.


Street Wraith by Cyril Van Der Haegen

Blossoming Defense is exactly what infect needed, improving Ranger’s Guile by a full +1/+1 and making Fatal Push well, less fatal. I love the card and try to use a playset in every infect deck I build now.


Blossoming Defense by Anastasia Ovchinnikova

Two weird additions are in this list:

Firemantle Mage gives you that reach, that menace, when you need Inkmoth Nexus to get by 1/1 spirit tokens and you can’t find the Distortion Strikes.


Heroic Intervention by James Ryman

Sideboard

The sideboard is a hot mess, I’ll admit. I am not sure how post Hour of Devastation will shake up our local Modern metagame. One thing I do know is that Solemnity does not affect this deck, and neither does Blood Moon. If they drop the enchantment, looks like we’ll be bashing with a 4/4 trampler, bloodrushed, and then hit with the Flesh // Blood for sixteen damage total if unblocked. It’s no joke.

I personally like Hurkyl’s Recall over Nature’s Claim, but again, if Solemnity becomes annoying, I have an option to kill that and affinity decks.

Note that the Ghor-Clan Rampager’s bloodrush ability cannot be redirected to Spellskite because it’s target attacking creature, which, like Apostle’s Blessing, can’t be moved. But Spellskite is annoying with Become Immense, so a Twisted Image, which powers up our best pump spell, is added.

Carrion Call and Dryad Arbor are for Liliana of the Veil and Jund decks.

I’m trying out Key to the City as this deck begs for more Become Immense cards in the graveyard. I kept trying to make fetchlands work and they just aren’t quite what we need due to Traverse the Ulvenwald. That said, an unblockable creature needs three mana to be lethal once that’s on board. Ghor-Clan Rampager’s bloodrush for {R}{G}, Become Immense for {G} and that’s eleven poison counters. It might be overkill, but in longer, grindier matchup with a ton of removal, I’m testing it out. I tried it in {B}{G} infect and it’s an all-star with Phyrexian Crusader.


Key to the City by Sean Murray

Enjoy fellow folks who like to count to ten.

—Mike


Hour of Devastation is now available for preorder at CoolStuffInc.com!

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