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Modern Monastery Metalcraft

The deck I’m playing this week is something I’ve done before. I call it Monastery Metalcraft, but I’ve also seen the names Paladin Combo (after Puresteel Paladin) and Modern Cheeri0s (after an obscure Legacy deck). It’s one of the most fun decks I’ve played in Modern; it is a combo deck that can go off by turn 2,or even turn 1 if you’re really lucky, at which point you draw your entire deck to look for a Grapeshot.

The combo works as follows. Once you have a Puresteel Paladin on the board, each equipment card that enters play allows you to draw an additional card. The deck has 18 zero-mana equipment artifacts, so you start by casting all of those until you run out. You then tap your Mox Opal for blue and cast Retract, which brings all artifacts (including the Mox) back into your hand. You then cast them again to draw even more cards. Since the Mox was returned to your hand you can also play that again, and use it to cast another Retract. After you play 1-2 Retracts you often have enough equipment cards to draw your entire library, which you do until you find Grapeshot, and you cast that to win the game.

The reason why the deck isn’t tier-1 is because it can be disrupted quite easily; it relies entirely on Puresteel Paladin staying on the board. A single Lightning Bolt can therefore set you back a couple of turns. To fix this, we have Muddle the Mixture, which can be transmuted to find a Paladin, and Noxious Revival, which can put a Paladin back on top. We also have Monastery Mentor as an alternative win condition; just make as many tokens as you have zero-mana spells in your hand, and attack the next turn for lethal.

As mentioned it’s a great deck to play, and it’s quite cheap, so I can recommend it especially for FNMs. The most expensive cards in the deck are Mox Opal, Flooded Strand and Monastery Mentor, which are all Modern staples and therefore good investments (although Mentor’s price could drop temporarily once it rotates out of Standard).

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