Splinter Twin

Splinter Twin

Enchantment — Aura

Enchant creature

Enchanted creature has ": Put a token that's a copy of this creature onto the battlefield. That token has haste. Exile it at the beginning of your next end step."

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Legality

Format Legality
Commander / EDH Legal
Highlander Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Custom Legal
Unformat Legal
Casual Legal
Legacy Legal
2019-10-04 Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Leviathan Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Limited Legal
Vintage Legal

Splinter Twin occurrence in decks from the last year

Latest Decks as Commander

Splinter Twin Discussion

DuTogira on B&R February 15 2021

2 days ago

StopShot you’re missing the point with the Splinter Twin ban. I 100% agree that we’ve hit the necessary critical mass of “answers” for twin/exarch, such that the deck isn’t ever going to oppress modern again. It’s not THAT good. I don’t think it was EVER that good, frankly, to be considered “oppressive”.
Twin’s problem is that, for the low low cost of 8 deck slots, you get an “I win” button that deploys 1/2 of the combo on an opponent’s end step. What this translates to is “a better wincon for any control deck playing U/R”. The competitors for that wincon are T3feri, Tef5ri, JtMS, Colonade, and just grinding your opponent out with Snapcaster Mage chip damage.
T3feri + Tef5ri are a decent set, maybe good enough to contend with Twin as a wincon these days. If we unban twin... maybe that’s enough to provide U with some wincon diversity. However, when twin was banned, your only “wincon” competition in U/x (literally blue + anything) was just colonade, snappy, and at the time we were desperate enough that Vendilion Clique was a 4-of option. Basically, your control deck was just better if it ran twin, even if the increase in win rate was marginal (<5%). Ergo: twin stifled U/x control deck diversity, because even if you wanted to be in U/W or U/B, the “best” thing to do to make your deck competitive was to just go U/R and play twin. Even U/G didn’t exist, unless you were Tom Ross playing infect.
A retrospective on twin may be ok now, what with all the new walkers, but honestly I don’t think WotC is gonna jump at unbanning it. Now that it’s banned, I’m sure “twin stifles our ability to print new broken cards” is a sufficient token argument to keep it out forever.

StopShot on B&R February 15 2021

1 week ago

@TriusMalarky While Twin can force a land to get tapped on turn 3 to prevent 3 mana spells from getting cast you do need to remember doing so leaves the combo piece open to sorcery speed removal such as a Dreadbore , Flame Slash or Declaration in Stone in the first game and in the second and third game it allows cards like Torpor Orb or Blind Obedience to be played - tapping all out to put the combo piece down means you won't have counter-mana up to stop these effects from hitting the board and often the Twin player will instead choose to cast the combo piece on the endstep of their opponent's turn incase if there is a sorcery-speed threat such as T-orb that needs to be countered on their opponent's turn instead. The Twin player will (in most cases) only choose to preemptively tap down the land if they know their opponent is mana-screwed, if they don't have a counterspell in hand or if they know their opponent is running Twin to further stall the opponent's combo. With that said I wouldn't entirely discount 3 mana answers that can be made uncounterable by Cavern of Souls or Aether Vial or 3 mana spells that completely disable the deck beyond repair such as Unmoored Ego if they resolve.

I also think it would be more problematic for Twin decks to also splash in a third color for enchantment removal. One aspect that made Twin decks so oppressive was a solid portion of them would include copies of Blood Moon in the mainboard in order for it to be more difficult for their opponents to interact with their combo. Dedicating to a third color to run Dovin's Veto is going to come with not being able to run Blood Moon while being easier for the Twin deck to also get disrupted by an opponent's potential Blood Moon as well. On the other hand, Blood Moon has also been made weaker in the meta as Cleansing Wildfire and Force of Vigor make effective get out of jail free cards from sideboard.

Plus, I think you're undervaluing some cards in your assessment. Back when Twin was around the only one-mana spells that could remove an endstep flashed-in Deceiver Exarch was Path to Exile , Rending Volley , Vendetta and the ever so infrequent Skred and Lightning Axe and out of those, the only cards that were mainboard worthy was Path to Exile and Skred (which only worked if you were running a niche deck and you were going first with extra technicalities). Fatal Push has had a huge impact on the format being loads better than Vendetta which gives many more decks greater flexibility when holding removal mana up especially in game 1 given how playable it is in the mainboard. There's also Veil of Summer which also deserves mention and while you may see it as a simple upgrade to Autumn's Veil , fundamentally it's not. In the event I toss a Path to Exile or Fatal Push at a Pestermite and the Twin player responds with a Dispel , or as you suggested a Dovin's Veto , if I play an Autumn's Veil (which would effectively counter either counterspell), it would be a 2-for-2 trade. I lose the kill spell and veil to remove the Twin player's combo piece and counterspell. This lukewarm outcome is the reason why Autumn's Veil saw none if any modern play as Silence typically did its job better enough to warrant a splash in white over it in most cases if such an effect was absolutely needed in sideboard. Veil of Summer surpasses both because it has a built in cantrip that turns the interaction into a 1-for-2 trade in your favor and if the interaction happens while your opponent is trying to put a Splinter Twin on the combo piece it becomes a 1-for-3 trade in your favor. Veil of Summer 's value is by no means merely replacing Autumn's Veil or Silence 's role in the format, but more accurately it's replacing the clunkier Krosan Grip and Sudden Death that were typically used against the Twin-combo instead which makes it its own unique answer against the combo in my opinion.

Two more cards that I think also deserve further assessment is Sinister Concoction and Dovin's Veto . To say Dovin's Veto is just an upgrade to Negate I think is an understatement. "This spell can't be countered" is the reason Abrupt Decay was a banger of a card at thwarting Twin's machinations and I think the fact a Dovin's Veto can stop a Splinter Twin on cast makes it good enough to be a Twin-killer too. You suggested Twin might have to go into white to run its own Dovin's Veto es and Path to Exile s but I think the fact this card can also be used against Twin may be a more compelling reason for Twin to splash green over white just to have Veil of Summer as a necessary means to put up with the combined pressure Abrupt Decay and Dovin's Veto would have in keeping Twin in check as the Veil is the only card that can universally counteract both spells. (And even so Veil of Summer isn't a 100% failsafe as it has nothing against Rending Volley .) As for Sinister Concoction , I'm not going to pretend this card sees much Modern play, but this thing is a serious contender at throwing a wrench in Twin's plans and outside of Twin it's not an unplayable removal spell either. The reason why is it works much like your explanation for why Authority of the Consuls works - you can play it turn one and your opponent has no means to remove it without splashing a third color. Now Authority of the Consuls may be the more ideal card to use over it, but if your multicolor black deck can't splash white this is your next best thing and it even has some upsides over Authority of the Consuls . Sinister Concoction may be more fragile to effects like Stifle and Tale's End or effects like Spellskite and Apostle's Blessing , but it makes up for it when enchantment removal is thrown at it, as you can crack it in response to dumpster one of your opponent's creatures, in this case most likely a combo piece, while also rendering the enchantment removal as a waste in the process. This in turn is going to make the Twin player more cautious about playing their combo pieces before drawing into enchantment removal which can potentially delay the Twin player's progress harder than an Authority of the Consuls otherwise would. And if the Twin player doesn't have an answer, you'll always crack the Sinister Concoction in response to whatever creature they'll try to enchant with Splinter Twin to inflict the most damage. Even if you're playing on the draw or you draw into the card later, much like Authority of the Consuls , Sinister Concoction also bypasses quite a couple of Twin's favorite counterspells too such as Dispel , Spell Snare and Remand which is why I think the spell has much merit as yet another Twin-hate specific sideboard card that just wasn’t available to be utilized before in the past.

Lastly, the list I put up above was something I compiled over a quick gatherer search. I wouldn’t be surprised if I missed a few cards that may be just as worthy of discussion on countering Twin as well.

StopShot on B&R February 15 2021

1 week ago

@DuTogira Personally, I disagree about Splinter Twin stifling diversity in the Modern meta. Before its ban I was running a homebrew Mardu deck that had an incredibly favorable win-rate against Twin. The deck's win-rates also varied amongst the other decks in the format with its worst matchup being burn. Ever since Twin's ban aggro has swarmed the format outpacing my deck harder than before.

My homebrew deck's most defining piece was utilizing an Evershrike in the graveyard and using a Spirit Loop or Rancor to make it a constant presence in the late game. Graveyard strategies weren't as common back then either as I believe Living Death was the only significant graveyard strat at the time, so most decks wouldn't dedicate too much room to graveyard hate. With Twin gone other faster and more efficient graveyard strategies arose and graveyard hate out of sideboard became all the more frequent which made winning games 2 and 3 much more difficult for my deck. Not only that but those graveyard strategies that couldn't exist with Splinter Twin around ended up getting Faithless Looting banned. As a non-blue deck Faithless Looting was the glue that kept my deck together as getting a certain 5-CMC creature in the grave and an aura in hand is difficult and slow enough as it is. My deck could handle Jund/Abzan's hand disruption and their Scavenging Ooze 's, but with much more graveyard hate, more aggressive aggro decks and no Faithless Looting I would argue banning Splinter Twin killed my deck even though I never used that card in the first place.

I feel the banning has only diversified aggro and phased out slower decks like mine that had better win rates against Twin and BGx. I also think it's a false positive as there have been a huge slew of new modern-viable cards that have been printed since Twin's banning. The format was going to grow regardless of if Twin were to be banned or not, the real question was by how much? I also feel like there have been many more cards printed during this time that could be made excellent sideboard cards against Twin than there have been new cards printed to help with Twin's strategies. I remember the times when Combust was one of the answers used at stopping Splinter Twin and then they printed Rending Volley which took countering the strategy even further. Since then I've seen more and more cards printed in Standard that I feel could further help in keeping Twin in check today more than it ever was before. These are cards printed after it's banning that could be used against it now if it were ever unbanned: Sinister Concoction , Thalia, Heretic Cathar , Unsubstantiate , Spell Queller , Authority of the Consuls , Lost Legacy , Fatal Push , Harsh Mentor , Trespasser's Curse , Tocatli Honor Guard , Rampaging Ferocidon , Kinjalli's Sunwing , Kitesail Freebooter , Cast Down , Assassin's Trophy , Unmoored Ego , Dovin's Veto , Force of Negation , Force of Vigor , Veil of Summer , Fry , Aether Gust , Brazen Borrower , Hushbringer , Deafening Silence , Mystical Dispute , Drown in the Loch , Wilt and Necromentia . I've likely missed a couple more due to how many sets have been released since and there will always be more cards that will be printed in future that can disrupt the strategy too. Since there have been many new deck archetypes that have emerged and been developed and improved upon over the many years in a non-Twin environment I'd like to see how they'd stack against Twin now just to see if it really is still an obstacle.

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