Hey everyone! Welcome to another Modern Musings. Today we are going to talk about the Rivals of Ixalan card, Blood Sun! Blood Sun seems like a fun and brew-worthy card so I’m here today to talk about it strengths, weaknesses, and viability within the current Modern metagame.
First, let’s get the inevitable comparison to Blood Moon out of the way, because Blood Moon this card is not:
Blood Sun advantages over Blood Moon:
- Draws a card when it comes into play, making multiple copies not dead
- Can be played in Tron or Eldrazi Temple decks since the lands effects are all mana abilities
- Makes fetchlands truly dead cards
- Can be played with Ravnica bouncelands for fast ramp
- Can be played in heavy multicolored decks
Disadvantages of Blood Sun when compared to Blood Moon:
- Doesn’t hose Tron or Eldrazi Temple decks
- Doesn’t color screw your opponent, leading to fewer free wins
Now you might see that in quantity Blood Sun does have more advantages than Blood Moon, but in quality Blood Moon is still the better card overall. Let’s look at why this is the case. Blood Moon will almost always win you the game against a non-red opponent and score you a free win, Blood Sun will only give you these free wins if your opponent draws all fetches. Blood Moon will frequently stall Tron long enough so you can win the game before they get to 7 mana or draw Oblivion Stone. At best, Blood Sun will make your opponents stutter for a turn or two, but that might be enough. My point with this short paragraph is to point out that to really win with Blood Sun you can’t rely on it’s ability alone to stunt your opponent, you have to use it proactively.
So how do we do this? As stated above there are a couple ways. The first, and easiest way to utilize Blood Sun is in Tron. Posting a decklist for this inclusion doesn’t really seem necessary since it fits pretty seamlessly into existing G/R Tron lists. This will be a good sideboard tech against those pesky Ghost Quarter, Field of Ruin, and manlands. This is especially true since tron really struggles with removing lands, relying on Karn Liberated or a Ghost Quarter to do much of the work in this department.
Fitting Blood Sun into the Eldrazi archetype is considerably harder, however, and might require a different build of Eldrazi altogether to accommodate such an inclusion. Unlike G/R Tron, Eldrazi Tron doesn’t have Chromatic Star to have colored mana while not missing a key land drop. I think that the Eldrazi Tron archetype honestly doesn’t really need the additional disruption of Blood Sun anyway, as they already have Chalice of the Void which is plenty of disruption. I think to utilize Blood Sun effectively with Eldrazi Temple, we need a new deck, or at the very least revisit an old incarnation of the archetype. This is roughly what I’m thinking of:
The idea of this deck is pretty simple: power out a Blood Sun or Chalice of the Void ASAP with Simian Spirit Guide and then beat down with Eldrazi before your opponent has a chance to recover. There is a little late game with Elder Deep-Fiend and Drowner of Hope. I included a playset of Izzet Boilerworks in the mana base for potential abuse with Blood Sun. It’s difficult to gauge exactly how many copies of the bounce lands to run; it might turn out after some play testing that 6-8 copies is the right number, but for now I feel that 4 is enough to see how often it slows tempo vs. acting as a second set of Eldrazi temples with Blood Sun.
My final idea for Blood Sun today hopefully answers the question: what if we go all out with the bounce lands? Now, it’s pretty difficult to build this version of Blood Sun without heavily encroaching on Amulet Bloom territory, a deck that is almost guaranteed to be better than anything we build. Unfortunately, because of how important Slayers’ Stronghold is to that deck, we can’t exactly add Blood Sun to it either. Besides, Blood Sun and Amulet of Vigor is a bit a non-bo anyway. So what if we went in a different direction and built Big Mana Superfriends?
The idea behind this deck is to power out a turn-2 Blood Sun into Garruk Wildspeaker, and then untap your bouncelands and play super expensive planeswalkers or Deploy the Gatewatch. I don’t think that this deck is super competitive, but it does seem like a blast to play. My inner Timmy squeals in delight at the prospect of playing this deck.
To wrap things up, I think there is still undiscovered brewing space with Blood Sun, and I will continue to explore the possibilities. That’s all for this week, let me know what you think of Blood Sun in the comments, we are fast approaching the long awaited Modern Pro Tour, so next week I’m going to be giving my prediction as to what deck I think is going to win it all!