As for traditional Slivers, I feel that the big issue into getting at least tier 2 is that every other deck has been getting goodies but we did not. For example, one of our big niches was that we had such a huge versatillity of creatures to handle many different situations. But look at decks like counters company or G/W Value Company. They too abuse Collected Company into getting their toolbox creatures in play, while having acces to stuff like unlimited mana combo, Chord of Calling etc. They got new goodies like Excavator, Vizier etc. It's hard to not think there are decks that do what we do but better.
On top of that, it's not an easy deck to stsrt playing. Yes, slivers are every kitchen table players favorites. However, the deck is not cheap, and when spending that money, why not go for something more competitive? To add to that, it's a surprisingly hard deck to play. Because about every card in the deck interacts with another, there are many many tricks inexperienced Sliver players just don't see. I've cringed so many times when watching pro players give Slivers a try and then losing games due to not seeing the tricks that would win them the game. And Im not even good, I just played the deck a long time. Many peoole I met liked the deck, played some rounds, thought it felt underwhelming and tried something else. If they practiced more, they would have ao much more succes.
To top it all off, the current meta is quite harsh. Storm and Valakut feel unwinneable with all but the perfect scenarios. Tron is very hard, as is Lantern Control. We have very little interaction vs Elves and Counters Company.
All is not grim, however. There still is a niche (imo) in the Slivers deck. Although not consistant, we are still much more explosive than most toolbox decks and more versatile than most explosive decks. I feel it would take 1 or 2 sick sliver reprints or just value tribal card advantage cards to push us that little bit higher towards T2. Despite all flaws I listed, I seldom feel like my drck lacks power in modern. And heroes like Paul and Adam give at the very occasional succes I need to keep brewing with it. Ixilan seems to open up tribal cards, Dominaria and the Core set might give us Slivers. I believe.
I have lost to Valakut, but I think we are generally do well against them. We do better than merfolk due to Galerider not caring about blocking, Blur Sliver making our stuff hasty, Warping Wail, Sedge Sliver helps a ton as well, Necrotic can help the game go long, and Diffusion doesn't care about their lighting bolts and by then too late, Darkheart/Syphon requires them to continue to set up a vareity of turns to kill us while we get in some good damage.
Obviously we can get behind or have a sucky draw and they can draw perfectly, but we have a lot of power just plaing mutavaults and ramming out a lord.
I haven't played Scapeshift since Hour of Promise, so I can't say if they have speeded up or not. One of the advantages that we have against merfolk is that we don't take a turn off to spreading seas. We just generally go lord into lord and that can make the decision making easier.
Storm is rough as is Ad Nausuem and Counters Company. I think Warping Wail is pretty good against Storm and Counters Company as well as a quick clock. Gut Shot/Cautery could prove useful to stop the Convoking etc.
GDS is problematic depending on how their hand looks. I think this match requires more so dependancy a little on what the hand of GDS between creatures, removal, and discard to see where we would succeed or not. Chameleon Colossus is good, but if they go with a Young Peezy plan. We are at large disadvantage unless we have removal, warping wail, or a cautery sliver
You are all right though, it isn't the easiest deck to pilot, but it works. Merfolk is hard to pilot to success as well and we are a little bit more explosive and inconsistant.
Having piloted Slivers and merfolk I can say slivers is a lot worse. The math that Curse catcher and spell snare make against all sorts of combo decks feels amazing when compared to slivers. The deck also completely stonewalls blood moon decks. Spreading seas can single handled beat decks like grixis and burn on turn 2/3. Vapor snag is also really underrated in this creature heavy meta. This utilities cards are not as versatile as some of the sliver stuff, but is so much faster/reliable its insane. Can necrotic/telkentic single handedly beat tron, sure but not until turn 4-5 hoping to not get turn 3'd, or I can spreading seas on turn 2-3 and cruise to a win with merfolk.
Honestly the more I play merfolk the more it feels like we need to narrow down to 2-3 core colors and mix in utility and/or card draw. That being said I can't find a good color to cut, or a good way to make a 5 color mana base than can support cards like vapor snag or thoughtseize. I was hoping cards like metallic mimic would let us cut white or something out but just haven't put tons of time into it.
I would personally prefer playing with Manaweft and Gemhide Slivers. I want to play with possible all 8 to power out our lords, but possibly bigger slivers.
The issue that this mana-base presents isn't the ability to cast slivers, but interaction with plays from the opponent. CoCo allowed us to get past boardwipes and possibly save slivers from bolt or blocking. We won't have that ability anymore outside vial which is going to be more unreliable as that instant speed tool.
Slivers I might want to try and play. I wonder what happens if we try to try to play ramping slivers. We have slots with Aether Vial for 36 Slivers if we keep the 20 lands which might be up for debate depending on how many 1 drop slivers we would play.
So what you're saying is kind of merge Traditional Slivers with Fast Slivers and see what comes out? I think if we go this route, we'd have to cut Sedge as we wont reliably be able to have a swamp for the buff (knowing full well that we'd still have regenerate for a B). Maybe a build with this type of land base could be a way to finally play Sliver Legion...
Yes a build like that defo cannot support Sedge, but looking to ramp into the Sliver 'gods' could be interesting. Looking forward to a list!
I played a local tournament, went 5-3 and thus missed top 8. Used Paul's list with the updated sideboard. Typing this on my phone so apologies for layout
Round 1 vs Elves:
I've seen Elves get semi finals with Ross Merriam on a recent SCG event so was expecting that list, with infinite mana and Ezuri. It wasn't that list, however. Game 1 he dumps his hand on the board in no time, but a combination of Sentinel + Sedge + Manaweft slows his attack plan dowm hard, while my slivers fly to the win.
Game 2 he starts slow, I go fast. I leave plenty of blockers to prevent him to attack for lethal while I can swing for the win in return. An Elvish Champion gives him forestwalk though, and my overgrown tomb allows him to win.
Gsme 3 is almost like a replay of game 2 but with a happy ending. Once more he goes the forest walk route, but a vialed in necrotic shoots the champion and after blocking his board is gone. I finish him off in my next turn.
1-0 in rounds
Round 2 vs U/W control
Typing this match out won't be exciting due to this being long games. Game 1 Im too fast for him to handle. I keep drawing into slivers and he doesnt find enough answers. Game 2 he has ALL the answers and totally locks me out of the game. Game 3 a duo of diffusions give him a hard time to the point where he has to boardwipe. I was waiting for that, and end of his turn vial in 2 sliver lords ans cast Coco, finding sedge and sentinel. I kill him easily.
2-0 in rounds
Round 3 vs Ad Nauseam
Theres always this guy and he always plays this deck. I always end up having to play him.
Game 1 I have no chance. He has a really fast hand and Im dead on turn 4.
Game 2 he goes turn 3 Redcap Experiment into Platinum Angel. I did not see that coming, but not worried since I boarded in Harmonics vs Unlife anyway. As the game goes on, he is at negative life and Im at 8. He swings, I coco hoping to find a Galerider, Harmonic or Necrotic. Instead I find blur and manaweft. Meh. I fall to 4 and it all comes down to this topdeck. Its... necrotic! I nuke his plat and win.
Game 3 I bring him down to 14 as he finds a Phyrexian Unlife. He casts it, and in my turn I find a necritic. I feel pretty good. On his turn, he Spoils of the Vault for an Angels Grace. He is at 8 life as he casts it so odds are he dies here (I have necrotic and mana vs unlife). Turns out Angels Grace was on top of his deck, and I lose. Damn you split second!
2-1 in rounds
Round 4 vs Grixis Shadow. This player was 2-1 aswell, but he was not very good. He tells me he is new to the deck (which belongs to his brother) and that he is amazed he won 2 rounds. Nice guy, I beat him easily as he sets himself to bizarrely low life totals and my slivers easily pick him off. After the games we talk a bit and I give him some tips.
3-1 in rounds
Round 5 vs G/W Humans
Game 1 was intense. We both are extremely fast, but he has 2 path to exile that set me back a bit. I find a Sedge Sliver, which helps me take control of the game with his buddy Sentinel Sliver. Eventually I find Galerider and win.
Game 2 was annoying. I win very easily as he kept a card with tectonic edge being the only land, along with Aether Vial. I have a very fast draw and win. He kept saying how it was bizarre he didnt find lands, but imo thats the risk you take when keeping a hand like that. Sliver players know.
4-1 in rounds
Round 6 vs Storm
Not much to say. I lose 0-2 and never felt I had a chance.
4-2 in rounds
Round 7 vs Valakut
Really? I just had Storm
Actually it didnt end up bad. Game 1 Im lucky and race him out. Game 2 a Warping Wail stops his Scapeshift and he had air after that. Sometimes these things happen!
5-2 in rounds
Round 8 vs G/R Vengevine
Dear lord this deck is fast. Game 1 I die on turn 3 to 4 4/x creatures attacking me and a Temur Battle Rage + Become Immense.
Game 2 I find 2 relic of progenitus in my hand and draw into loads of Slivers. He has a bit of issues with the GY hate but still gets 4/4 creatures in. My Slivers a bigger, I win.
Game 3: Once again Im dead on turn 3. Had a decent hand, but far from good enough.
Ended 5-3. Not great, especially since the Grixis win was basically a bye. Still happy to beat Valakut and I actually got really close vs Ad Nauseam.
We could put Pulmonic Sliver into The New Fast Sliver list as well.
We can ramp up to Sliver Fatties with interesting abilities like trample or better lords. It might be a good idea to play Chameleon Colossus or other Slivers above 4 mana to reduce the power of Fatal Push
I think the idea of using Fast Slivers as mana dorks to power out Sliver Legion, Sliver Hivelord, Pulmonic Sliver is a decent idea. HOwever, I am not sure how many mana dorks we need and how many 2 mana lord effects we need.
I know my second list doesn't have Necrotic, but I would always at least include 1 as well as Frenetic at this point.
Quilled Sliver seems interesting for me due to Venom sliver combos. If we are ramping, some of these might have more value than others. I am also taking into consideration some blood moon effects that would totally hose Ramp Slivers
I would also consider playing Chalices in Rainbow Slivers whether fast or closer to a traditional list.
I played Slivers for the first time in a while at an FNM. They are still fun.
2-1 - Merfolk - Game 1 he had a good hand of lord after lord. I was stuck on land that I couldn't cast my creatures and I should have mulliganed. The other 2 games, Slivers were faster and flying. He had the lord after lord plan, but took some time to spreading seas a land, his mistake, but it was his first time playing the deck.
1-2 - Jeskai Prowess - Really close match on the whole and I won the second game through his many removal spells. I almost had him game 3, but he played thundermaw hellkite and swung for exactsies through my lifelinking, flyers who were tapped.
1-2 - Dredge - First game stood now chance due to conflag and 3 prized followed by conflagerate. Second game was at 4 life and facing 4 bloodghasts and 1 stinkweed imp, but coco on his turn with my board of predatory and manaweft found a syphon and a predatory to block gain life and it was over. I was in that game quite a while and warping wailed a crucial cathartic reunion. Game 3 - 1 lander with vial which got abrupt decayed and my only land ghost quartered (never saw second land)
2-0 -GB value town? - I think it was GB value town, but I ran over it with ease through many removal spells and lili both games.
I also played slivers at FNM, however I had a very poor showing.
4 capped rounds
Round 1, death and taxes (mono white) - 2-1. Lost the get wide race in game 1, could have won easily had I seen a Galerider. Came out quickly and won fast in game 2. Managed to win in combat enough in game 3 to win the match.
Round 2, burn - 1-2. Lost the die roll, lost the match. Gave him all he wanted and more in game 1 however... Darkheart was amazing in game 1 but still could not win due to Lavamancer. Killed on turn 4 in game 2, was very very fast. Game 3, I failed to find any life gain even after bringing in the Syphons. Ended up getting Lavamancer'd again.
Round 3, BW Eldrazi and taxes - 0-2. Flooded out VERY hard both games. Mulliganed to 6 in game 1, keeping a 4 land, vial, diffusion hand and proceeded to draw only lands and vials. Game 2, was hit with 2 Tidehollow Skullers into 2 Wasteland Stranglers sending my cards to the yard.
Round 4, Naya Company/Evolution - 1-2. Started off this matchup well, winning on turn 5 in game 1 however my opponent didnt spoil too much for me as he didnt reveal what he was playing. Game 2 was all in his favor. Game 3 he Evolved a Wall of Omens into a Linvala, Keeper of Silence which shut down Manaweft, Necrotic, Frenetic and everything I was doing, didnt help I lost 5/6 coin flips.
I did not play well partially due to fatigue, but I made horrible decisions all night.
I plan to go back down to only 4 mana slivers after this event by likely bringing back the 1 Striking Sliver.
I have tested a version of slivers without sedge and swamps. The manabase was pretty consistent (and it will be better with Unclaimed Territory) and has incredible starts, but it lacks the reach and the push that Sedge provides. I tried to improve it adding Sliver Legion (wich was a DAMN good card), but it still misses more power.
I think Sedgeless slivers is the right direction, but, again, it misses something. Perhaps more Legions, now that the manabase is better.
For Quilled Sliver: its brutal paired with venom sliver or sentinel sliver, but being a 1/1 for 2 hurts a lot. Cautery seems to me a better option.
And, Pulmonic Sliver seems horrible to me. Being a five-drop that dies to lightning, having Hivelord at the same cost...
Interested in the Chalice of the void idea, but the entire deck will require a change.
In my opinion, replacing Vial for chalice, adding more mana slivers and fatties and going stompy doesn't sound bad.
The thing with Pulmonic Sliver is that next turn you will still get Pulmonic back unless Pathed or Angered. It also gives us more flying.
I think we should look at Trample, Legion, hivelord or just bigger lords if we are looking for fatties. i still think pulmonic and bonescthe deserve shots, but we need an answer to blood moon on the whole which is what vial was for.
Round 1, 2-1 vs bant spirits. The only reason i lost any game was due to mana screw game 2. This was against a very new to modern pilot who was borrowing my other deck. It really was not close.
Round 2, 2-0 vs eldrazi tron. Game 1 i saw the perfect curve, t1 vial, t2 Lord and vial in gale, t3 vial in Lord and activate mutavault and swing 10, he scooped after that. Game 2 was closer but i saw 2 sedge and a frenetic and ride them to victory.
Round 3, 2-0 vs merfolk. Another really good curve in game 1, won off a coco finding a blur for a ton of damage. Game 2 my opponent thought my godless shrine was a watery grave assuming i couldn't block and over committed to an attack, i killed on the crack back.
Very happy with my play along with how the deck performed overall. I switched back to 3 diffusion main and only 4 mana slivers main, and replaced the side diffusion with a cautery. It made sideboard decisions so much easier and i didn't miss the gemhide at all.
Hollow One Discard 2-1
Game 1 lost to early Hollow One and Monastery Swiftspear, too big to handle for my slivers, because of Mutavault I could not cast Sliver Legion, lacking one mana of color. Game 2 I played Sedge, Manaweft, 2 Sinew's and Syphon before opponent hit Blood Moon, overvalued his 3 Monastery Swiftspear's. Game 3 won with race.
Game 1 opponent quickly smshed me with infect land. I had game 2 pretty much won by lethal, and I terribly misplayed by attacking with one too few slivers, allowing opponent to survive and kill me on counter attack.
Result like always, I keep losing cards to Smallpox, we go to topdeck mode, and planeswalker hits board - Gideon, Liliana, Sorin, whatever. I am prety much screwed by then.
Overall: I lose to affinity - too fast, too explosive, easly overmaneuver slivers with tricks. I lose to boardwipes, what dies remains dead and we trade one card for multiple. I lose to Smallpox in general - planeswalker in topdeck mode is game over, trading is very unfavorable for me, pleanty of answers. Doesn't feel too good. Can you lend me some help?
As for sticking with less colors for slivers and without Sedge, I would suggest BantGWU combination: Galerider, Diffusion, Predatory, Sinew, Collected Company, Manaveft, so easly forgotten Mirror Entity, (which is somehow substitute for Sedge), Sentinel, Chameleon Colossus and Harmonic all can play there. As for mana base, we go for only 4 rainbow lands, which are Cavern of Souls, not Sliver Hive, though it hurts me to even think about it. Also 4 Mutavault, and 12 other lands in combination of basics and dual. Bant colors also have acces to good utility cards, so there is room to experiment. What do you think?
Galerider is the key to be able to go to later stages of the game where we can let harmonic do its nasty nasty work. I would bring in lifegain as well to help the strategy if they don't find an inkmoth nexus.
Boardwipes happen. Frenetic Sliver and Sedge Sliver are our protection against boardwipes as well as coco.
Smallpox is very good against us as we are required to play creatures, but Vial should help that considerably as we are able to cast and cast creatues. Necrotic Sliver can be very good here as well destroying planeswalkers. Striking Sliver might be good against this deck for the Bloodghasts and Lingering Souls are worse.
Sorin can be beat by our own lifegain such as Syphon Sliver. Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire.
Mirror Entity isn't really a subsittute for Sedge. Sedge is played not due to being a lord although that helps, he is being played due to regeneration.
If you go Bant, you are going a bant control route. You lose some of your best utility such as Frenetic Sliver, Cautery Sliver, Necrotic Sliver, Syphon/Darkheart Sliver/Blur Sliver for more removal and counters. I am not sure why you would play Collected Company as you are probably playing a more Tempo style deck with only a few creatures. Galerider, Vial, the lords, diffusion etc. with a few counters and paths as back up. You might want to run Dormant Sliver into that to be able to draw into stuff. Maindeck Telekinetic Sliver for opposition effects etc.
Affinity is faster, so you may need to play the control role and keep hands that accentuate that role in blocking and then slowly winning once you are ahead and have exhausted those resources.
Smallpox is tough and will be very difficult due to their edicts, targetted removal, and the value from planeswalkers.
Discard/Removal is hard for slivers to beat, but not impossible. I am thinking Vial might be key, but also getting the right set of cards in hand. They are our weaker matchups. We have a strong control game and we have a strong aggro game, we lose to some midrange strategies the most.
If you are looking to go Bant Slivers. I would take inspiration from CounterSliver in legacy and see where you can adapt it to modern.
I'll explain the card choices main/sideboard that are different from most lists right now.
Polluted Delta, this should have been a Verdant Catacombs. I just couldn't get my hands on one.
Harmonic Sliver, the friend group I went down with was speculating on there being a lot of affinity. Though there were only a few affinity lists, he still came in handy game one numerous times at the sacrifice of my own vials.
Homing Sliver, I board this guy in almost every time I sideboard, my friend asked me why I didn't just mainboard it if it always come in postboard. So it was mainboarded and it was an all-star the whole time, it probably won me 2-4 games by itself.
Screeching Sliver, an alternate wincon. Hilarious when you get it against lantern control.
Surgical Extraction, I wanted some form of graveyard hate, but now that I think about it Relic of Progenitus would have done a better job.
Chalice of the Void, this comes in against burn and combo decks, and is almost always played on 1. It's worked very well for me.
Ghostflame Sliver, this is brought in against Tron, it allows us to dodge All is Dust and Ugin wrath effects.
Blur Sliver, this is brought in against any control decks or decks we are trying to outrace.
Heroic Intervention, this is great against control protecting against non regeneratable board wipes.
Overall I went 6-2 and got 17th. I don't remember exactly how most of the matches played out so I won't be going into much detail.
2-1 Sultai control
2-1 Red-White Burn
0-2 White/Green infinite mana combo with devoted druid and vizier of remedies
1-2 Same as above.
2-1 Ad Nauseum
2-0 Bant Coco
2-0 Eldrazi Tron
2-0 Grixis Control
So the two matches I lost were the same deck, I really just needed to draw dismembers in this matchup, which I only got in 1 game.
If you have any questions about the list feel free to ask.