DIGGING FOR TREASURE

Posted in GRAND PRIX MADRID 2014 - COVERAGE - EVENTS on November 16, 2014

By Tobi Henke

"Tell me something about Treasure Cruise," I asked Ivan Floch. I mean who better to ask? Not only was the current No. 5 playing Blue-Red Delver with Treasure Cruise, but he played it to a perfect 10-0 record so far.

(5) Ivan Floch

"It's draw three cards for one mana. Of course it's good. I mean what do you want to hear?" Floch replied. "But seriously, Treasure Cruise is everything it promised to be, and maybe more." About the role of Treasure Cruise in his deck in particular, Floch said, "It's definitely what put Blue-Red Delver over the top. Having an easy source of card advantage like that."

He added, "Though, in a way, it didn't make the deck better than others, because so many other decks, well, they run Treasure Cruise too." Comparing the card to the other delve spell making waves in Modern, Floch said, "I think Dig Through Time is probably on the same power level but is better suited to more specialized decks like combo."

Talking about combo, I asked Platinum pro and long-time Splinter Twin advocate Patrick Dickmann about his new version of the deck featuring Dig Through Time. "The card is good enough to run the full four. Good enough even to make some adjustments to the deck to better accommodate the delve. For example, I now have a couple of Thought Scours in my list," said Dickmann. "Which actually isn't half bad these days anyway because of all the Serum Visions. When your opponent scries two cards to the top, putting those into the graveyard is often worth it, even if it helps with the opponent's delve."

Patrick Dickmann

Dickmann called Dig Through Time "probably the best turn-three play in the format." And it's apparently not that hard to cast it that early either. "Fetchland plus Thought Scour on turn one; fetchland and a Remand or something on turn two. That's six cards in the graveyard."

Dickmann stressed the importance of the card for his Twin deck. "You can often go and get both parts of the combo, Deceiver Exarch and Splinter Twin, with one spell. Or get the missing combo part as well as some protection. Although, mostly I just grab further card advantage stuff so that one Dig Through Time helps set up the next," he explained. "Compared to the time before Khans of Tarkir, I don't think Twin got any better; it just stayed about the same. But that's only because everybody else got Dig Through Time or Treasure Cruise too, of course."

Like Floch, Dickmann was also undefeated at this point, albeit with eight wins and two unintentional draws. Whether one is digging through time or cruising for treasure, delving definitely appears to be the thing one should be doing in Modern at the moment.

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