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Format Legality
1v1 Commander Legal
Arena Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Commander: Rule 0 Legal
Custom Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Gladiator Legal
Highlander Legal
Historic Legal
Legacy Legal
Leviathan Legal
Limited Legal
Modern Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Pioneer Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Vintage Legal



Counter target spell. Ionize deals 2 damage to that spell's controller.

wallisface on Burn/Control

2 weeks ago

Some thoughts:

  • the idea of mixing control and burn is going to be a very difficult tightrope to navigate, because both these ideologies want different things. Control wins by gaining incremental card-advantage, and generally needs a game to go long to pull-ahead. Burn on the other hand doesn’t typically care about card advantage, and will usually waste all their cards haphazardly in an attempt to win the game as soon as possible (and before the opponent can stabilise).

  • From a control standpoint, i’d recommend against stuff like Blink of an Eye (it gives you card disadvantage), Essence Scatter (its application is too narrow, Mana Leak is better 99% of the time), and Ionize (its just too weak/ineffective when soo many good 2-mana counterspells exist, including Counterspell).

  • From the burn standpoint, i’d suggest ditching cards like Goblin Electromancer (you have almost no spells that benefit from this, and in any case its a creature for combo decks), Guttersnipe (its very slow, and waaay weaker than it might read), and Imperial Recruiter (again, too slow for burn. Also messes with cobtrol tempo).

  • cards that could help you here are Dragon's Rage Channeler and Delver of Secrets  Flip. Both if these cards can come into play cheaply, which lets you hold up mana for countermagic, and they both become fairly aggressive quickly. You’ll prolly want Mishra's Bauble to help enable the Channeler.

9-lives on

1 month ago

I've used Ionize and Essence Backlash more than intended. Archmage Emeritus with Harmonic Prodigy has been great in drawing up to four cards with one instant per turn. Drawing power is definitely something not to be denied. Spellweaver Eternal is basically a burn card against blocking, but still great. I have generally been able to take my opponents into long games of attrition. Gonna try out my skill at the next FNM with this deck and see how it fares.

9-lives on

2 months ago

I'll define aikido as follows:

  1. Receiving damage, then dealing damage; exempli gratia: Deflecting Palm, Boros Reckoner.

  2. Causing damage through combat by using a defense against them; exempli gratia: Spellweaver Eternal, Eternal of Harsh Truths.

  3. Preventing spells and dealing damage through this prevention; exempli gratia: Ionize, Essence Backlash.

Do you see the common thread in this? It's that there is a transformation of receiving damage into dealing damage, or preventing damage into doing damage, or if the opponent prevents damage then causing that damage. This is essentially the aikido martial art's goal. Aikido doesn't deal direct damage like a burn deck. It seeks to simply transform damage.

I know that in order to be useful as an archetype it has to be literally a useful gameplay. Although, the cards Boros Reckoner, especially when paired with Gideon's Sacrifice, and Deflecting Palm have won me a few games alone, and I've only played a few games with a burn deck and my testudo deck. The two former are excellent when someone becomes too cocky and swings with all (s)he's got. However, a archetype will not always be the best, just ilke a defense-to-damage deck is very difficult to play.

wallisface on

2 months ago

I would suggest against Goblin Electromancer - you can't rely on it being in play, and it only helps you out in a very limited way when it does. Both Ionize and Essence Backlash are really, really bad cards, and I think adding more pieces-to-equation to try and make them remotely playable is just going to complicate things and make the situation worse.

I think you're getting too caught up on the idea of "aikido" - which is a real word term for martial arts, and doesn't directly translate well into a magic archetype. Instead of using that word as a crutch, I would instead try to redefine your deck by what you actually want it to do, and then do those things efficiently. Forcing yourself to using "counterspells that deal damage" is going to leave you in a terrible position, as those cards are generally garbage in the Modern format. Your gameplan for a deck shouldn't be one that forces you into bad deckbuilding decisions.

I think you need to decide how much you want to restrict yourself to some self-imposed "theme" and how much you want this deck to actually be playable - because I don't think it's going to be realistic to have both here (i.e. no matter what you do, Ionize and Essence Backlash are going to be bad cards).

Personally I think you should just change this deck to be UR Wizard-tribal, something like this list here.

9-lives on

2 months ago

I've changed it according to your advice. Added 4x Counterspell. I'm thinking of running Goblin Electromancer for Ionize and Essence Backlash. I really have to have these cards in order to deal damage. I don't know what to do with most of my cards. I'm trying a pure aikido deck, which is the entire point of this deck. If you can help me find synergies amongst cards that deal with instants and soceries and/or wizards, that would be great. I'm not running a burn deck, otherwise I would include other cards. Counterspells that deal damage are an essence of aikido. Same with cards that deal damage upon blocking, or transferring damage when receiving.

wallisface on

2 months ago

Some thoughts:

  • 80 cards is waay too many cards, you should always be aiming to play a deck of 60. Anything above this number just leads to massive consistency issues. Try to get rid of a bunch of cards to get back to this 60 number.

  • Your land count needs revisiting. Scaling this to a 60 card deck, you're only running 20.25 lands, which is very, very low (Burn decks run 19 lands and only play cards costing 1-2 mana). When you reduce your deck to 60 cards, I think you still need to ensure you have a land count of 23ish lands.

  • Your mana curve is waay too high. Modern decks typically can't justify running more than 3-4 cards at 4-mana, you've got a whopping 10 cards costing this much. Look to lower your mana curve.

  • You're running a bunch of really poor card choices. For example, you've got a bunch of really average/poor countermagic (Render Silent, Ionize, Essence Backlash, Absorb) when you could be running some obviously-better cards (i.e. Counterspell). Other bad options include Ugin's Conjurant, which is just a strictly worse Endless One, and The Wanderer, which is just really niche (only really affects really-slow-red decks).

  • Some of your cards are nonbos with each other. For example, you have some high mana sorcery cards (Clear the Mind, Divination) which when cast will prevent you using any meaningful countermagic. Control decks typically want to keep their defenses/options up during the opponents turn.

I think currently your list feels really disjointed - it's lacking focus. I would suggest trying to get down to 60 cards, upgrade the bad card choices, and try to apply more focus to what you're trying to do - currently it feels like there are too many cards that don't forward your gameplan.

Balaam__ on Faerly Odd Wizards

3 months ago

I think Ionize could be replaced with either another 2x Counterspell or maybe Lofty Denial since everything flies. 3 mana for a counterspell that burns for 2 may seem good but I think that additional would better be spent elsewhere. Just a thought.

9-lives on

6 months ago


I'm definitely playing a Budget deck. Monastery Mentor is wayyyy too expensive, haha. And I'm not sure what I'm playing, it's generally a competition, but not an actual tournament, and I don't know if the other players are just playing casual decks or not. I want to win of course, but I'm not going to try to buy the newest best deck possible.

Counterspells are, to me, the most frustrating to face and the most satisfying to play, especially ones that tie up their mana, and when they are played early and the opponent can't afford it makes the mana cost doubly better. I'd love to run Mana Leak! Should I run Izzet Charm at all? The drawing power is what attracts me most, and it's ilke a two colored Mana Leak, but it makes the opponent pay 1 less mana... I don't know if it's a good card or not.

IF I go with a major aikido theme, without having cards that have copy, what could I use? I love being able to 'reflect' damage, it's a really cool and fun concept and generally isn't played much. Hence my love for Boros Reckoner and Deflecting Palm.

And I am using Shock and Lightning Strike because they're like a cheaper damage-for-damage Ionize and Boros Reckoner respectively, but they cost less mana, and I already have these cards without having to buy them. In this fashion, should I run Illusory Wrappings or Slither Blade? The former would be great for Izzet Charm and it's like a Lawmage's Binding but weakens the creature, and I think the latter is a great card for continuous 1 damage.

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