Modern Power Rankings: Top 10 Enchantments

Enchantments are weird. At times they can be an overlooked by development and they can often be very underpowered. Every set and expansion comes with a goofy eight mana enchantment that takes six turns to actually do something (and usually happens to be the only mythic you open in your limited pool). Enchantments are also sneakily overpowered in Modern. This Modern Power Ranking could alternatively be called “Top 10 Sideboard Cards in Modern” as the majority of powerhouse enchantments live their life in sideboards just waiting to be tagged into play. This list explores enchantments that are staples in modern alongside newly printed ones making waves in the format.

10: Bitterblossom

You would think that a card that had been banned for an exuberant amount of time in the format would be higher on the list, but here we are. This two-mana tribal enchantment is a token generator for the decks you love to hate. This card is a necessity in both Black-White Tokens and Faeries of any variety. The card generates a slow, swarming army of flying 1/1’s that get buffed by other enchantments like Intangible Virtue or benefit creatures like Spellstutter Sprite. The enchantment also sees play in sideboards of slow, grindy decks like Abzan or Jund when applicable. When the format is decided by a fair deck beating another fair deck, Bitterblossom can often turn the tables.

9: Detention Sphere

Speaking of tokens, this three-mana gold enchantment is just what you want when facing down creature decks that go wide with tokens or multiple copies of the same creature. This enchantment debuted in Return to Ravnica alongside enchantment nemesis Abrupt Decay. Detention Sphere also helps clear the board of other pesky enchantments, planeswalkers, or nonland permanents. Decks like U/W/x Control often feature this enchantment with flexibility as it can serve as a utility answer to many difficult to deal with permanents of different types. In our given format, it’s not a bad answer to Empty the Warrens tokens or those two Death’s Shadows that are threatening your life total on turn three.

8: Keranos, God of Storms

Wait, I thought this was an enchantment list?

It feels like cheating to add this godly card to the list as it can sometimes end up turning sideways and threatening your opponent. Truthfully, it feels like cheating when this enchantment resolves. No matter what you reveal you are advancing your gameplan. Draw some more cards or throw some Lightning Bolts, no matter. This enchantment gained popularity in the Splinter Twin hay day but is now seeing an increase in sideboard play with the experimental Kiki-Jiki Control decks, Blue Moon, and U/R Through the Breach. This enchantment is often more of a mirror breaker than another certain five mana creature as you can often sit back and let your devotion to drawing spells and lands do the work. This enchantment is arguably the best of the cycle of multi-colored and mono-colored gods when it comes to Modern and even Legacy.

7: Prismatic Omen

Prismatic omen is a very innocuous card. If you’re not familiar with what it does, it can often take a couple read-throughs to try and grasp its application.  Enter Valakut. This enchantment would have been farther down the list a couple of years ago but currently, R/G Titan Shift features it as a flex copy to allow for an earlier win at the hands of Scapeshift plus Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle. Some lists pick between this two mana green enchantment or another, Khalni Heart Expansion. I believe that Prismatic Omen is in a better place due to the speed of the format. When you end up resolve this and follow it up with a Primeval Titan, that usually ends the game on the spot. Prismatic Omen can also randomly help you survive a resolved Blood Moon.

6: Spreading Seas

Did someone say land disruption? Spreading Seas is a very annoying card. Its ability to replace itself and disrupt the opponent early on in the game is invaluable. This two-mana enchantment is featured in Merfolk, U/W/x Control, and has popped up in Modern Jeskai Saheeli lists to abuse the power of Felidar Guardian. The enchantment helps combat Celestial Colonnades, Valakuts, and greedy mana bases alike. More and more copies are showing up in blue decks that don’t have access to efficient land disruption. The card will all most never be a dead draw and it can at times even help fix your own mana!

5: Leylines

 

These four-mana enchantments seem to be the perfect card to be at the dead center of a list. They are often amazing or terrible. In Modern, Leyline of Sanctity and Leyline of the Void takes the precedent in use, while others like Leyline of Anticipation can show up in odd brews. The benefit of these two leylines is that they often shut down the majority of your opponents hands before they even have a chance to interact with it. Leyline of Sanctity is growing in popularity as hand disruption continues to plague the format in form of Thoughtseize and Inquisition of Kozilek. The real problem is drawing them in multiples, but you often have to include multiple copies in your sideboard just to get the payoff of having a pre-game action that has your opponent desperately thinking ways to salvage the now dead cards in hand.

4: Rest in Peace

Similar to Leyline of the Void, but with a lot less drawback. This two-mana enchantment interacts with a large majority of the format. From shrinking Tarmogoyfs and delve strategies, disrupting Snapcaster Mages and Goryo’s Vengeance, and negating the majority of dredge cards. Your opponent’s Stinkweed Imps have never looked so bad. What the card also does is allow you to plan mind games with the opponent in mirror strategies. Are you brave enough to bring in all copies against your opponents Snapcaster deck when you play your mages? Do you bring it in game two and board it out game three when they take their own Snapcasters and Torrential Gearhulks out? The mana cost and power of this card make it insanely useful in a wide breadth of matchups.

3: Search for Azcanta

The new kid on the block has a lot of game. This blue enchantment has made continual waves in Modern since its debut. Decks like U/W Control, Grixis Azcanta Control, Grixis Shadow, Esper Goryo’s, and some budding Sultai strategies are seeking to abuse the card selection available. The power of the card is obvious when it transforms, but the incremental advantage and resources it provides to the decks that include it make Search for Azcanta a card that will continue to be explored in Modern deck building. This enchantment also avoids enchantment hate when it becomes a land and can at times fix your mana or ramp you in some instances. The versatility is truly a treasure.  

2: Stony Silence

The reason this hateful, hateful enchantment is at such a high spot in this list is that it keeps a hateful, hateful deck in check. I believe that without Stony Silence being a clean answer to a majority of Affinity’s strategies, we could be faced with the robot menace at a much higher rate. Decks that have access to white mana are always going to be slotting this card into their board. It is clean, yet manageable answer to the format’s most consistent aggro deck. Stony Silence can also do some work against stalling Tron in the early turns so you can get your footing before they do very powerful things. This enchantment can also answer some random artifacts like Pentad Prism in check.

1: Blood Moon

What a surprise! The three-mana bane of the format. There will always be debate around this card’s validity and effectiveness, but the fact of the matter is that it is the most played and powerful enchantment Modern has. It disrupts many top-tier strategies and keeps greedy manabases in constant fear of tapping out against certain decks and forcing these strategies to play fair with deckbuilding. Blood Moon is the most powerful enchantment that the format has to offer and requires your decision to include and cast the card be precise as it can sometimes hurt your mana base far more than your opponents. The Rivals of Ixalan counterpart Blood Sun is an interesting addition to the format and is a formidable foe to Blood Moon as it can replace itself, but doesn’t damage all the strategies Blood Moon does.


Honorable Mentions

G/W Auras

  

I’m just going to group all of these auras together. From the annoyance of totem armor to the powerhouse of the Coronet, these auras pop up now and again and create headaches for your opponents that use targeted removal, crazy right?

Threads of Disloyalty

I believe this aura is often overlooked. The majority of creatures in the format are three mana or less and making your opponent fight their own threats is a great advantage. This heavy blue enchantment could be too slow for the current format but it never hurts to try and steal a Death’s Shadow.

Ixalan Transformations

I’m a brewer at heart and the range of abilities provided in the enchantments printed in both Rivals of Ixalan and Ixalan make my brain excited. Modern is a format that can always allow for more innovation and cards like Storm the Vault, Growing Rites of Itlimoc, Vance’s Blasting Cannons, and Journey to Eternity can provide just that.

The options for odd and useful enchantments in Modern are vast, so as always leave some comments here or reply on our Facebook or Twitter to let us know what kinds of nonland, noncreature, nonartifact, nonplaneswalker permanents you swear by in Modern.