The Dive Down

A Magic: The Gathering podcast for the casual spike, focused on Modern, Pioneer, Explorer, and more!

About the show

The Dive Down is a Magic: The Gathering podcast focused on the latest decks, trends, and strategies for the casual spikes in Modern, Pioneer, Explorer, and more!

Each week your hosts Dave, Shane, and Stanislav discuss the latest innovations, competitive events, and level-up topics for paper and online players.

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Episodes and Blog Entries

  • Episode 186: These Ends Were Made for Living, ft. Chris Castro-Rappl

    Episode  |  August 11th, 2022  |  2 hrs 3 mins

    CCR from MTG Grindcast joins us to talk about all things Living End. On the heels of his RCQ win with the deck, Chris helps us break down the cards, the sickest plays, how to beat common hate strategies, and more!

  • Episode 185: NRG Chicago: It's-a Me, Yorion.

    Episode  |  August 4th, 2022  |  1 hr 42 mins

    This week it's all about the NRG Championship Series event in Chicago. We dive deep into the data, the most popular decks, the sickest plays, and the cherished friendships that make an event like this possible.

  • Episode 184: These Foots Were Made For Crashing

    Episode  |  July 28th, 2022  |  1 hr 51 mins

    Temur Rhinos are craschading onto this week's show, in a classic deck dive into the midrangy combo deck. Plus a preview of the upcoming Nerd Rage Series Modern Trial in Mundelein! Stan's been playing a lot of Rhinos lately, and some recent discounts on Force of Negation finally got Shane to pull the trigger on buying the deck. So Dave said "let's do a deck dive!" and in the ensuing practice matches, we discovered an amazing thing... everyone loves playing this deck! We also kick off the episode with some metagame predictions and leaderboard check-in ahead of this weekend's Nerd Rage Series Modern Trial in Mundelein.

  • Episode 183: We Tried: Innovations in Modern Creativity, E Tron, & Prowess

    Episode  |  July 21st, 2022  |  1 hr 31 mins

    It's another nice week to try new cards and decks in the wide world of Modern. Dave takes another stab at Indomitable Creativity with Gab Nassif's recent list, while Shane assembles a Tron of Eldrazi proportions with the latest prison shell. Meanwhile, Stan chases the dinosaur in search of turn 2 wins with Gruul Prowess.
    The Break Down: Stan Plays a RCQ
    The Dive Down: Dave Can't Direct Creativity
    The Dive Down, cont: Shane Accepts Any Kind of Tron
    The Dive Down, cont: Stan Finds No Quarter For Prowess

  • Episode 182: The Four Pillars of Modern (ft. Zach Allen)

    Episode  |  July 14th, 2022  |  1 hr 44 mins

    The current top dog of the NRG Series leaderboard joins us to discuss all things Modern for all your RCQ preparation needs. Zach Allen returns for a conversation about the various types of 4C Yorion decks, the merits of Murktide's flex spots, the position of green creature combo decks, and his favorite ways to cascade right now.

  • Episode 181: The Synergies of Pioneer's Metagame, ft. Todd Anderson

    Episode  |  July 7th, 2022  |  1 hr 26 mins

    Friend of the show and Pioneer aficionado Todd Anderson joins The Dive Down this week to go over top decks, up and comers, unsung heroes, and potential traps in the format. Mono-Green continues to reign supreme, but could Young Pyromancer put up a fight?

  • Episode 180: Life Lessons and Level Ups

    Episode  |  June 30th, 2022  |  1 hr 34 mins

    Though we do have some frustrations to air at the start of the show, we eventually turn it around to discuss the many ways Magic (the Gathering) has improved our lives. Then we take a brief trip down memory lane to remember how some people improved our Magic playing skills too.

  • Episode 179: 10 Takes on Modern, Pioneer, & Magic

    Episode  |  June 23rd, 2022  |  1 hr 39 mins

    What can Izzet decks in Pioneer play instead of Expressive Iteration? How crazy was the MOCS meta from the weekend? Is Glimpse of Tomorrow a good card in Modern? This week's show answers these questions and more in a format-spanning Dive Down of takes hot and cold.
    But first, off the top we deliver a little announcement about the future of The Dive Down (nothing big, we swear — but you should listen).
    Shane doesn't even need Nykthos. Stan can quit cascading any time he wants to. Dave actually seems to get mad about something.

  • Episode 178: NRG Modern & Pio: Is 4c 2 Good 4 U?

    Episode  |  June 16th, 2022  |  1 hr 33 mins

    It's a hot one on The Dive Down this week. We take a deep look at NRG's recent set of Modern and Pioneer Trials in Lansing, Michigan and tackle the big questions about our favorite formats. Is 4c too good for Modern? What can even be done if it is too good? What's happened to Pioneer without Winota and Expressive Iteration? How many words can the three of us get beeped out in one episode? And more! Stan fights through jet lag and still brings the insights. Shane loves talking about bad decks that performed badly. And, finally, Dave gets his comeuppance.

  • Episode 177: Ban Reacts, a Dream Hacked, & Some Mid Rakdos

    Episode  |  June 9th, 2022  |  2 hrs 16 mins

    Shane and Dave are totally blindsided by this week's Pioneer bans — especially since they happened after we recorded this ep. But don't worry, we use the power of technology to travel into the past and add a segment of hot reactions and speculation on what's next for Pio. After that, we continue with our regularly scheduled episode breaking down the Modern $10k at DreamHack Dallas and diving into Pioneer's most mid deck — Rakdos Mid!

  • Episode 176: The People's Meta(s): Modern and Pioneer

    Episode  |  June 2nd, 2022  |  1 hr 54 mins

    This week the three friends dive into an examination of not one but two metas — Modern and Pioneer — using some recent 5-0 league decks. We collect em, dissect em, and... tierect (???)... em. You know what we mean... we're placing them into groups and discussing what decks we think are going up, down, and sideways.

  • Episode 175: Sleeve/Believe/Heave: Streets of New Capenna Edition

    Episode  |  May 26th, 2022  |  1 hr 52 mins

    The three friends are taking it back to the streets on more time. This week we evaluate three different decks that were improved or created by the addition of SNC to our formats. Shane pods his way through a Naya deck full of combos in Modern. Stan shreds his way through infinite turns in Modern. Dave explains so he's falling short of virtuosity in Explorer. It's a real journey through a few more cards making an impact. Before that, though, we break down the top 8 of NRG Minneapolis where three other friends (of the pod) take the whole thing down.

  • Episode 174: Explorer’s First Ban & More Pioneer Testing

    Episode  |  May 19th, 2022  |  1 hr 46 mins

    Shane and Stan take the three friends through Winota's ban in Explorer, four different challenges across Modern and Pioneer, and finally some of their testing results with Winota and Izzet Phoenix in Pioneer.
    The Break Down, I: Winota's Gone in Explorer!
    The Break Down, II: Kicking Bass in a Bunch of Challenges
    The Dive Down: Winota's Here in Pioneer! So is Phoenix!

  • Episode 173: Do You Even Shred, Tho?

    Episode  |  May 12th, 2022  |  1 hr 43 mins

    The boys flap their little wings and scream caw caw as they dig their beaks into the hottest bird lawyer in Magic this week. Whether it's ripping up contracts, filtering hands, shouting 'objection!' or pumping flyers, Ledger Shredder does it all. But does it have what it take to be a multiformat staple? Yes, apparently yes.
    The Break Down: Living End Won't Die
    The Dive Down: New Bird Learns to Fly
    The Dive Down, cont: Filling Graveyards Can Be Sly

  • Episode 172: Exploring the Streets of New Capenna

    Episode  |  May 5th, 2022  |  1 hr 53 mins

    Our three friends begin their visit to the Streets of New Capenna with some Explorer, Pioneer, and Modern decks. We take a look at Ob Nixilis, The Adversary and Stan's uncharacteristic BW Blink brew with Getaway Car and Extraction Specialist.

  • Episode 171: 6 Ways You Can Get Better at Magic

    Episode  |  April 28th, 2022  |  1 hr 52 mins

    In a special patron-requested episode, our three friends provide a roadmap to improvement for key Magic skills and other useful habits. We also kick off the show with run downs and reactions to the latest Magic Arena announcements for Explorer and Pioneer.