This is a very silly yet effective Ink-Treader deck that i have been brewing for some time.

This deck aims to win by ramping into an Inky, then using him as a catalyst to control the board state. Once attaining this board state, the aims to turn everything sideways and cast Sigil Blessing to pump everything to absurd levels.

At the surface level this may look like a bad Ghostway deck. However saying that doesn't do the deck any justice.

Now i'm still toying around with the number but currently this is the list I have settled on until i make it to more modern events and become encouraged (Read: stomped until I do) to change the list.

As for the decklist...


4x Birds of Paradise :

Were in green and want to cast a 4 CMC creature that doesn't do much on his own, Birds help us get to 4 mana a turn earlier and more importantly colour fixes. 4 of them maxes our chance of seeing them without commiting other slots to more dorks. Noble does not tap for red, therefore i don't run it. also exalted means nothing when you turn your entire board sideways

4x Coiling Oracle

Do you like drawing cards? do you like ramp? i hear this guy does both! The oracle allows us to hopefully drop an additional land when he enters. Even if he doesn't the fact that the revealed card goes to hand allows us to run this as a better Elvish Visionary. giving your opponent this knowledge is worth the chance of ramping.

Now once set up with an inky in play, the Oracle's ramp is less important, and ether allows us to take lands out of our deck, or draws us some cards. They can attack too, so that pretty good.

2x Wall of Omens

Dragging games out in modern can be hard when Wild Cats and cheeky goblins are swinging every turn. so I run 2 Walls to help preserve some life as we set up our board. The walls draw us a card to replace themselves, and when flickered once our board is set up fuels our hand.

2x Kitchen Finks

Now our mana is greedy, so greedy in fact that we run our burn hate mainboard. Finks is good for all the same reasons that it is in any other deck. Blocks multiple times, gains you some life which can negate the shock you just played. When set up this guy makes the burn players cry, as every cloudshift turns into 2 life, making the matchup really hard to win. we run 2 main and one side to wish for, we don't do this for Coiling oracle as we want to see it every game and only pay 2 mana for it.

3x Eternal Witness

Eternal witness is the superglue for this deck. She can at her very worst keep us on curve by returning fetches. At her best though, is when you are bringing back all the instants just cast on inky. Cloudshifting your field and returning the cloudshift to hand is one of the best feelings, especially when it's done to avoid removal. Having two of these out and an inky allows you to path your opponents board every turn. seems pretty good to me.

3x Card:Ink-Treader Nephilim

Inky is the catalyst for everythng to work. Cloudshifting your entire board and abusing ETB's is his whole gameplan, making each piece of removal a Wrath of God as an eject button. Dropping a Inky to path the dredge players board is pretty rude and hard to recover from. He also turns Niveous Wisps into a Cryptic Command, tapping the field and drawing an average of 4 cards feels pretty good. Now i admit that any deck that runs removal laughs at Inky, which is why we run 4 cloudshifts and 2 momentary blinks. Once you play Inky you cast all your spells at him and he does the work. We run Ink-Treader over Zada because Ink-treader targets our opponents creatures, making our removal way better, and the reason we run Niveous Wisps


4x Cloudshift

Cloudshift is cloudshift, use it to avoid removal, to reuse ETB's and reseting your Kitchen Finks. for a single white you 2 for 1 your opponents cards, wasting removal and getting your ETB's.I maxed out on them because i want to see these all the time.

4x Niveous Wisps

Wait this card seeing play in modern? This card is bonkers with an ink-treader out, refiling your hand and buying you a turn. early game it mitigates some of the early damage and cycling itself. tapping out a goyf or Nacatl to save some damage may feel bad, but having 4 means we can still see more later.

1x Momentary Blink / with Flashback

Basically its a worse Cloudshift, but the Flashback is more then castable and allows us to reuse this effect when needed without relying on E-Wit to carry us through.

4x Path to Exile

So path is pretty good, we already know all about path. But what if we wipe the board for 1 mana? Path is Path, played in every white deck but becomes silly when used with Inky and Cloudshift. You path the Inky making a copy for every legal target, then resolve only the paths targetting your opponents creatures. Before any of your creatures disappear, you cast cloudshift targetting Inky, saving your field and abusing those delicious ETB's.

2x Vapor Snag

So I would like to pack more flicker effect in the deck, but sometimes you just want to get rid of a creature for a turn, and vapor snag does just that. The life loss certainly helps. Can also reset your ETB's which isn't entirely awful. Think of this as a flexible Cloudshift.

2x Lightning Helix

Most red decks run Lightning Bolt, however as a 4 colour deck, we hurt ourselves to get all our colours. It also allows us to gain a large amount of life by Helixing the Ink-Treader and resetting the board for the most part.

4x Glittering Wish

Now consider this Inky 4-7, it adds consistency to the deck as we really need Inky to thrive, otherwise we are a bad GW midrange deck. It also allows us to search out any card from out sideboard to deal with most situations is fantastic in this deck. allowing us to almost run our sideboard hate in game 1 if it's needed.Against burn? lets get Lightning Helix to wipe the board and go back to 20 (this is with an inky out.) How about lantern control or affinity? If we haven't lost we can grab Harmonic Sliver to start dismantling the board. since adding the the deck has felt a lot more resilient.


1x Card:Ink-Treader Nephilim

His in here so we can wish for him. Most important part of the deck.

1x Sigil Blessing

Our main wincon. Now it's in the side because we can actually wish for it. It's also better here so we don't have a dead draw. swinging for lethal with your birds is pretty great, especially when they become 6/7's or something.

1x Lightning Helix

Packing more removal in the side is always a good idea. more lifegain for the burn matchup since we can easily lose so much life to our manabase. can be wished which is a huge bonus.

1x Kitchen Finks

More lifegain! more blocking! The same reason it's in the mainboard, except its here to be wished for. Finks on the go!

1x Harmonic Sliver

This is our naturalize effect. Can be wished for in a pinch, although left until needed. These are for Affinity, Lantern Control, or any other pesky card, such as Blood Moon, which can hose us when we aren't prepared.

1x Ingot Chewer

Narrow artifact hate, we only run the one so we can side it in against affinity, and other artifact focused decks. this deserves a slot because we can flicker the Chewer in response to the evoke cost, costing us to destroy 2 artifacts as early as turn 2. Leaving us with a 3/3 beater to be flickered for later use.

1x Fracturing Gust

When you need to stop an affinity player from playing the game, or take away boggles toys. Gains us alot of life and also preys upon R/W prison decks. Is here to be wished for when its required.

1x Izzet Staticaster

Staticaster loves eating Lingering Souls tokens, and harassing Infect or Affinity. Completely hoses these matchups and can be wished for.

1x Fulminator Mage

Our wishable land hate for the tron matchup. also helps us deal with pesky Inkmoth Nexus's. Here when you need it.

2x Avalanche Riders

Our abusable land hate, again for the tron matchup. However the difference is that we can cloudshift him to start taking our opponents off colours.

1x Meddling Mage

A good card to deal with combo decks, turning off Grapeshot or Empty the Warrens against storm can save us, even if it is only living for a turn. Like most cards in this sideboard it can be grabbed with wish.

1x Simic Charm

A charm where every mode is relevant, the pump can get us the kill after tapping out our opponent, give hexproof to our field or even acting as a third bounce effect. Can be wished at sorcery speed.

2x Grafdigger's Cage

This is our hate for grave interaction, Typical cage to deal with dredge, abzan's Kitchen Finks (while turning off our own. At least we aren't banking on the combo) and stopping flashback shenanigans. Cage also loves to laugh at Collected Company decks, since that instant does nothing while the cage is out.

Lands, Gameplans and How We Play Them

Now our manabase, i could just talk about each land individually, or i could talk about whats more important, sequencing.

Our deck is focused to be predominately GW with splashes into red and blue for Inky, it also makes sequencing our lands a lot easier.

Lets start with the fetches; we have 11 and all of them fetch a white shock, as white the colour for all our instants and what we use to interact with Inky.

Turn 1 we always want to see a Temple Garden, unless we already have one in hand. this is to have white up for path early on and also to cast a bird.

Turn 2 we can see either a Breeding Pool or a Hallowed Fountain, the Latter being preferred. The blue source is to cast a Coiling Oracle on curve and have a mana up for path or cloudshift, or alternatively dropping a turn 2 Kitchen Finks recover some life and to start the beatdown.

Turn 3 is a little less strict. we can now safely fetching for red without hurting our curve, and happily play 2 2 drops (Coiling Oracle, Wall of Omens or Glittering Wish for Inky) or play a 3 drop (Kitchen Finks for another 2 life, a body to block or attack. Or a E Wit, to recover any Instants used to get this far (a Path for example.)

Turn 4 is when we start having some real fun. This is the turn we Jam Inky into play, and hold up any excess mana for Cloudshift, Path, or Niveous Wisps. more often then not we will only have 1 mana spare, so we prioritise the Cloudshift, as it can protect our Field and save Inky from a short life.

From here we tap out our opponent using Niveous Wisps targetting Inky at the start of their combat step, and dig for a Glittering Wish. This Wish we use to get our Sigil Blessing, to go for the win on our turn, if not, we use our turn to freely swing in for damage only to repeat this process. Any cloudshifts we draw will be used to protect our field, and to flicker E Wit's to get our Wisps back.


Now while I haven't playtested this deck to oblivion yet, I will later add sideboarding and general gameplans to combat the format.

Final Thoughts

Well guys thats all for now, let me know what you think in the comments, hoping to get some constructive feedback that isn't just "Run Nobles, not Birds"

If you have made it this far thanks for reading all my ramblings about a deck that more then likely won't even go anywhere.



+2 Vapor Snag +2 Lightning Helix

-1 Wall of Omens -1 Momentary Blink -1 Kitchen Finks -1 Wooded Foothills


+2 Grafdigger's Cage +1 Simic Charm +1 Meddling Mage +1 Ingot Chewer +1 Fracturing Gust +2 Avalanche Riders +1 Fulminator Mage +1 Izzet Staticaster

-1 Harmonic Sliver -2 Lavinia of the Tenth -2 Lightning Helix -2 Mardu Woe-Reaper -1 Reclamation Sage -2 Reflector Mage

Changed the majority of the sideboard to add more powerful wish targets. and adding more removal to the mainboard.

Sideboard now aims to actually answer the bad matchups in Tron, Infect, and Affinity.


mattman856 says... #1

I like where this deck is going. It looks like a great deck that can produce some value over the course of the game and can later control the board state. I think it lacks a strong wincon, and without the Ink-Treader, this deck seems like a pile of small-value dorks. The sideboard also needs some strength. Lavinia, Woe-Reaper, Harmonic Sliver, Rec Sage, Sigil Blessing, and Reflector Mage all seem kind of weak to wish for. Over all, this deck needs power and wincons to be great. I love the deck and +1 from me.

March 21, 2017 1:07 a.m.

FURYZ619 says... #2

Thanks for the upvote! yeah i do agree that the sideboard could do some work. however the slivers are reusable due to cloudshift and that is why they are there as opposed to something like nature's claim. The Sigil blessing is the win con, as you cast targetting Ink-Treader and assuming you have 4 creatures, it gives each creature +6/+6 and is exponential from there.

as for the reflector mage and Lavinia, for the most part I do see those slots as flex spots, and haven't found anything that really outshines them. Would there be anything you would suggest mattman856?

March 21, 2017 2:49 a.m.

mattman856 says... #3

A single Xenagos or a single Keranos would be great in the sideboard as wincons you can wish for.

March 27, 2017 11:20 a.m.

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Date added 2 months
Last updated 1 month

This deck is Modern legal.

Cards 60
Avg. CMC 1.82
Views 828