Modern Burn



By Richie Kaech


With sideboard guide

Why play Burn?

Less Hate

The hate against Burn used to be the problem, forcing you to play four Skullcrack and hoping not to go against a Leyline of Sanctity. But with cards like Kitchen Finks,  Timely Reinforcements, and Leyline almost gone from players’ sideboards, Burn can come back with the heat.

More Favorable Matchups

With the top five decks being U/W Control, Bridgevine, KCI, Tron, and Humans, Burn is in a good position. With good matchups against U/W Control and Tron and even matchups against Humans, BridgeVine and KCI, I believe that Burn should be your deck of choice for this weekend.

Free Wins

One of the many incentives to play Burn is the free win potential. When you open up a hand with two creatures, two lands, and a flurry of burn spells, you can secure wins very fast, rarely ever going into time. All that extra time after a game allows you to clear your mind and get ready for your next game.



4 Scalding Tarn, 3 Bloodstained Mire, 2 Sacred Foundry, 1 Stomping Ground, 3 mountains, 2 Wooded Foothills, 4 Lave Spike, 4 Lightning Helix, 4 Searing Blaze, 4 Rift Bolt, 4 Monastery Swiftspear, 3 Skullcrack, 4 Inspiring Vantage, 4 Eidolon of The Great Revel, 4 Goblin Guide, 4 Boros Charm, 4 Lightning Bolt, 2 Grim Lavamancer.


3 Path to Exile, 4 Destructive Revelry, 2 Surgical Extraction, 3 Searing Blood, 2 Exquisite Firecraft, 1 Skullcrack

Sideboard Guide


In: 3 Path to Exile, 2 Surgical Extraction

Out: 3 Skullcrack, 2 Grim Lavamancer

Knowing how and when to use your Surgical Extraction is key. The only other thing you need to worry about is killing your opponent as fast as possible. This matchup is usually going to end in a race.


in: 3 Path to Exile, 4 Destructive Revelry, 1 Skullcrack

out: 4 Lightning Helix, 4 Searing Blaze

Try to open with a hand that has some early creature pressure, because Tron can’t interact with your Goblin Guides and Monastery Swiftspears early. Try and save your Skullcrack when they hit Tron after board because of Thragtusk; letting this card resolve and letting them gain the life can just mean game over.

U/W Control:

in: 2 Exquisite Firecraft, 1 Skullcrack

out: 3 Searing Blaze

Laying down the early pressure with creatures again is key. Getting a Goblin Guide on turn one can usually get you around four to six damage. Besides that, you want to kill your opponent before they fill their hand with countermagic.


in: 3 Path to Exile, 3 Searing Blood

out: 3 Rift Bolt, 3 Skullcrack

This is a matchup all about knowing when to play reactively, and when to pivot to play proactively. Is the play to kill your opponents creatures, or is it to go for the player kill as fast as possible? This is one of the key things you need to be able to identify as a good Burn player because you’re going to be playing against Humans often.


in: 4 Destructive Revelry, 2 Surgical Extraction, 1 Skullcrack

out: 3 Lightning Helix, 4 Searing Blaze

Another matchup where getting the early creature and killing your opponent as fast as possible is key; your sideboard most definitely helps with playing a reactive game against KCI. However, pre-board your only game plan is to put them from 0 to 20 before they can get anything going. Opening with an Eidolon in this matchup is also a huge help, forcing them to take out the threat before they can further their gameplan.

Richie KaechComment