The $5 Modern Challenge

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Budget decks have always been around and popular. After all, Magic is a hobby (and an expensive one), and we can't always afford to have the top-tier and expensive decks.

Now, there's certainly something to the argument of sinking money into a "budget" deck, only to have that deck be completely uncompetitive and end up being $100 wasted down the drain that could have gone toward completing part of a "real" deck.

Today's challenge, courtesy of Reddit, offers something that won't break anyone's bank: the $5 Modern challenge. Outside of 55 Forests, 4 Lost in the Woods and a Dungrove Elder, it's hard to imagine any real Modern decks coming from such a strict budget.


But what I find most interesting about this post is looking back at the original one from a year ago, where we see fringe-playable cards and decks like mono-green Infect or Kiln Fiend, which have now surpassed those original bounds, showing possible growth even in the most budget of decks.

Is that enough to make me want to go in on any of the ones listed? I'm not sure I would go that far, but it's certainly a fun thought experiment to find out how competitive you can be on such a small budget.

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Corbin Hosler

Corbin Hosler is a journalist living in Norman, Oklahoma (also known as the hotbed of Magic). He started playing in Shadowmoor and chased the Pro Tour dream for a few years, culminating in a Star City Games Legacy Open finals appearance in 2011 before deciding to turn to trading and speculation full-time. He writes weekly at and biweekly for LegitMTG. He also cohosts Brainstorm Brewery, the only financial podcast on the net. He can best be reached @Chosler88 on Twitter.

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One thought on “The $5 Modern Challenge

  1. If we assume that basic lands are functionally free then here is my idea.
    Grixis lands control – tcg mid prices
    4x Flame Jab (0.19×4= 0.76)
    4x Ravens Crime (0.40×4 = 1.6)
    4x Treasure hunt (0.15×4 = 0.6 )
    2x Worm Harvest (0.30×2 = 0.6)
    3x Dakmor Salvage (0.30×4= 1.2)
    Total = $4.76 before basic land.
    I had a singleton Cruel ultimatum in the list but cut it for the dredge lands. For added fun Add in some Keldon megaliths.

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