Amulet Titan in Modern
For those of you who have been around the format for a while, you probably remember Modern’s Bloom Titan, the deck that utilized Summer Bloom and Bouncelands like Simic Growth Chamber to play a blisteringly-fast Primeval Titan. Ever since the ban, the deck has mostly died off, with Titanshift becoming the most popular Primeval Titan deck. But some people have still tried to make it work, even without one of the deck’s namesake cards. Amulet Titan is still an incredibly fun, lightning-fast deck with tons of lines to it, and even if it doesn’t have quite the raw power of the Summer Bloom decks of old, it’s still plenty powerful. This deck is a bit more mainstream than what I usually play here, but I think it’s out of left field enough and fun enough to fit in perfectly.
The creature base here consists basically of enablers and win conditions, with the main win condition being Primeval Titan (hence why he’s the namesake of the deck). Azusa, Lost But Seeking is essentially our replacement Summer Bloom, and Sakura-Tribe Scout gives us an extra land drop every turn. Courser of Kruphix provides plenty of value in allowing us to play the top card of our deck and gaining us life when the deck’s playing slower, and Walking Ballista can act as a wincon or just shoot down opposing creatures.
Our spells are almost all enablers to help us ramp out primeval titan, with Explore digging a card deeper and getting us an extra land drop, Ancient Stirrings finding any land in the deck, Amulet of Vigor, or Engineered Explosives, and Amulet of Vigor to let us milk our bouncelands for everything they’re worth. Since both Amulet of Vigor and the bouncelands trigger at the same time, we can order them, allowing us to untap the land, then return it to our hand. With Explore, Sakura-Tribe Scout, and Azusa, we can then replay the land for additional mana, allowing us to power out a very early Primeval Titan. Summoner’s Pact generally will grab us a Primeval Titan for the win, but it can also find most of our other creatures if we need them. Pact of Negation gives us a little bit of protection, and Engineered Explosives can help us clear the opponent’s board of chump blockers.
Unlike many decks where the manabase can simply be explained away with “We play on-color fetches and shocks and one or two utility lands,” Amulet Titan requires a bit more in-depth explanation of land choices. Simic Growth Chamber, Gruul Turf, Selesnya Sanctuary, and Boros Garrison all allow us to get two mana for a single land thanks to Amulet of Vigor. Gemstone Mine is excellent mana fixing in this deck, especially since resetting the counters is trivial with the use of our bouncelands. Tolaria West offers us a lot of different tricks aside from just grabbing our toolbox of lands, and Bojuka Bog gives us some maindeck graveyard hate to tutor up with either Tolaria or Primeval Titan. Cavern of Souls is much more flexible in this deck than it is in most, letting us make any creature we want un-counterable. Ghost Quarter lets us slow down Tron and other big mana decks, and Grove of the Burnwillows is color fixing at very little cost to us. Khalni Garden can make chump blockers if we need to buy time, and Radiant Fountain also buys us time through life gain. Slayers’ Stronghold is one of the most important parts of the combo, letting us swing with our Primeval Titan the same turn we play him, and Sunhome lets us push through damage to kill even quicker. Finally, we have Vesuva, which can come down as an extra copy of any land you already have, although in my experience it’s often an extra Boros Garrison.
In the sideboard, we have Obstinate Baloth to deal with faster decks like Burn and Affinity, while also giving us some insurance against Liliana of the Veil and 8 rack (if the person you’re playing against is into that sort of thing). Spell Pierce helps against spell-based decks and can give us extra insurance when trying to get our pieces in place, and Dismember helps take out any problematic creatures our opponents might have. Reclamation Sage is great against affinity and Blood Moon decks, and Tireless Tracker can give us an extra beater and card advantage, since the deck generates a ton of landfall triggers. Ruric Thar can slow down Storm, control decks, and other spell-based decks, while also protecting us against fliers, and Hornet Queen helps against decks like Affinity where a single flier could be instantly lethal. And of course, all of the creatures listed here can be found off of Summoner’s Pact. Rounding out the sideboard we have Kozilek’s Return and Firespout to help clear away armies of chump blockers.
- Tolaria West is one of the most versatile cards in the deck. You can use it to find bouncelands, utility lands, Engineered Explosives, Pact of Negation, and any creature in the deck either directly or indirectly through Summoner’s Pact.
- If you use Primeval Titan to get a bounceland plus a Tolaria West, you can essentially tutor the Tolaria West to your hand by using the trigger to return it to your hand.
- If you have enough mana and an Amulet, you can usually win in a single turn by playing a Primeval Titan finding a Boros Garrison and Slayers’ Stronghold with the ETB, then finding a Vesuva and Sunhome with the attack trigger. If you have two mana available and you make Vesuva copy the Garrison, you have an 8/6 vigilance double strike coming in, which will often be enough if your opponent is running fetches and shocks.
- Bouncelands can be used to reset an reuse your a lot of the lands: Gemstone Mine, Tolaria West, Bojuka Bog, Cavern of Souls, Khalni Garden, Radiant fountain, Slayers’ Stronghold, Sunhome, and Vesuva can all benefit by allowing you to reuse their abilities, and of course any other land can also benefit by netting you extra mana.
- Favor hands that have Amulet of Vigor in them. If the hand looks slightly below average but has an Amulet in it, chances are the hand will be above average. Obviously this doesn’t mean to keep hands that are outright bad, but Amulet hands will generally win the game.
- Play the deck. A lot. The deck has a lot of options when you’re playing it, and it would be almost impossible to mention all of them here. The best way to learn these lines is to start out goldfishing and just find what works there, and then move on to playing against real opponents where you can refine what you’ve learned.
Amulet Titan is a complicated deck, but in my eyes that makes it both extremely fun and extremely rewarding. When people think of “complicated decks,” their minds often go to Lantern Control, but this deck is definitely right up there, and unlike lantern your opponent won’t hate you by the time the match is over. The deck rewards tight play and sequencing, and even a single misplayed card can lead you to defeat. Give it a shot, and I think there’s a good chance you’ll fall in love with it. It may have its times where you draw the wrong half of the deck (as many decks do), but the times where you draw the right half feel absolutely unbelievable.
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