Monastery Mentor for Modern

I have been asked for a deck list or two for Modern that is focused around the card Monastery Mentor. Guess some people have them, i don’t at the moment but i plan to get some. Personally, i just feel like they are amazing in all formats. The fact there there isn’t already a ton of modern lists online floating around is a testament to how focused everyone is on other formats.

My head goes right to a red/white token list with a heavy burn sub theme.


4 Monastery Swiftspear
4 Young Pyromancer
4 Monastery Mentor

4 Path to Exile
4 Lava Spike
4 Collateral Damage
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Lightning Helix
4 Boros Charm

You could go a little more control like me i like Mardu control.

4 Young Pyromancer
4 Dark Confidant
4 Monastery Mentor

4 Bitterblossom

4 Thoughtseize
4 Path to Exile
4 Lightning Bolt
4 Lightning Helix

4 Lingering Souls

Even something a little more out of the box now that i have learned that one of my favorite cards “Disciple of the Vault” is legal. And attack from a few angles.

4 Memnite
4 Disciple of the Vault
4 Arcbound Ravager
4 Monastery Mentor
3 Tasigur, the Golden Fang

4 Mishra’s Bauble
4 Conjurer’s Bauble
4 Chromatic Star
2 Krark-Clan Ironworks
2 Trading Post

3 Bitterblossom

If it was me i would lean more towards the first deck at least until i knew that people were main decking a lot of token hate and even then i might just start to main deck more cards like Intangible Virtue and other anthem effects that are one sided.

Okay need to bounce, food before spring fling over on the twitch channel.


Magical Monday 8.25.14

Well i am finally back from Gencon. The trip was a blast like always. With the down sides of both a painful return trip and post travel illness. So a sweet twofor kick in the balls for me. But lets get into so magics.

Found out that my local shop has one invite to Cardmageddon (man i hope i spelled that right). I guess it is a large tournament with a Vegas spin on it, with rebuys in and lots of different formats. Sounds hot. But i am not wasting my time on a trip to Vegas with out much prompting from the wife.

Don’t think i should tell her that we could just pay 42$ to enter…. and go with out having to win an invite locally. No best not.

In addition to the “main” prize The Arena will have its normal real tournament prize pool. They always have the real deal there when it comes to prize support. Well at least in my eyes.

So needless to say i want to do well. Meaning that i have to play something other then draft and i have to have the deck ready by Saturday…

So time to hit the old kitchen table and see whats brewing and what i might need card wise.

I have a green/black dredge style deck that i have been playing for a while now. It has had a lot of changes made to it over the last year but i like where it is at more or less it is strong vs a lot of the field but it can stumble on mana as it has a swell of 3 casting cost cards.

I also have been playing with a that Black/Red control list. Think with some of the new m15 cards there is finally a super good deck there. But i don’t have a lot of the new M15 cards. Well i have lots of sealed packs waiting for family fun drafts….

Then there the Green/Blue deck that i have been fiddling with. It is a lot like what Reed Duke was playing this weekend but not as good. So i think i might steal like 99% of his list. But i need to find more Yisans. But seems like a deck right up my alley.

I was saying the other day that i think i am a grixs mage but i am just as much as Simic mage as a grixs mage. Oh if only Islands weren’t the best land ever maybe i could play something else.

Okay so this could be misdirection or the real deal so any one from the shop take it with a grain of salt this is my dredge list as it stands right now.

3 Deathrite
4 Wayfinders
3 Pack Rat
3 Lotheth Troll
3 Courser of Kruphix
3 Nyx Weaver
1 Herald of Torment
2 Pharika
1 Whip
1 Bow
1 Doomwake
1 Eidolon of Blossoms
1 Jarad

4 Grisly Salvage
2 Underworld Connections
3 Downfall
2 Abrupt Decay

24 lands

Sideboard full of removal and discard spells.

I almost feel like i need to make room for Lillana Vess or one of the other 2 planeswalkers in my colors. I could also see making room for Walls of Mulch… So much g/b goodness right now.



Magical Monday 7.28.14

Secrets, we all have them. And odds are you have some in your deck but how guarded are you really? Right now on my kitchen table are 3 decks, both standard and not that i have been playing or working on for a while now. Never played them out side of the house. Never talked with anyone about them other then my family.

But why?

It is not like i can play any thing other then draft locally any more. Last FNM i tried to play in the standard to get to use some of the cards before they rotated out but that pod wasn’t going to fill and if i wanted to play i needed to move to draft. Which i did. And it couldn’t go much better with the boy and i drawing in the finals for a nice pile of packs.

See draft is a good example of secrets, or at least for me. Once the draft is over i start building right in my seat. I will answer questions and whatnot but more or less anyone that has wondering eyes could see how i am start my deck. But once i have it laid out it gets turned over and i wont talk about it.

Weird, right?

But then i tend to make changes both during the tournament and right before round 1  starts. I have always thought of this as more as my conscious brain catching up to something my subconscious mind wants me to change. But how much of that is just me wanting to throw people off my game plan? See, Secrets….

Well i am not going to talk about my Secret decks i am still hoping to hit up a few games before the rotation for some value. However, i want to share some things i think are real in the modern meta and what i am working on to feel good about playing in that format.

  • 4 1/1 fliers for 5 mana over 1 to 2 turns is good
  • Manlands are still good
  • Lighting bolt is a still a real magic card
  • “Twin” is still a bull shit deck
  • Discard is still a thing
  • Other then a few lands that eat other lands and blood moon there is no real LD right now.


So i already have my one modern deck, which is kinda one of those Secret decks so i wont get in to it other then saying it could use some cards and it is really a meta game deck. Once people see it and prepare for it, it will not be as good. So i need another better all the time deck.

Also i need to own or be able to trade for those cards fairly easily.

So i am back to my gold deck mana base/deck.

Last week i had this:

4 City of Brass
4 Mana Confluence
4 Pillar of the Paruns
4 Gemstone Mine
4 Reflectiong Pool
2 Forest
1 Miren, the Moaning Well (For decks with lots of mans)
x Vesuva/Forbidden Orchard??

And it is good but i have been thinking more and more about how i like to play and i can cut some things and add some things for my personal mana so i will look at that after i have my deck list.

More i play these gold planeswalkers and the more coverage i watch and more i learn of the modern meta the better i like them.

Kiora, and Ral Zarek are insane cards.  Ashiok and Xenagos are almost as good but just a hair under. Ajani Vengeant has been an allstar in more then 1 or 2 of my older decks.  And i just know that Sorin is a house. I just know it.


1 Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver
2 Ajani Vengeant
3 Kiora, the Crashing Wave
2 Ral Zarek
1 Sorin, Lord of Innistrad
1 Xenagos, the Reveler
1 Venser, the Sojourner


4 Lighting Helix
3 Abrupt Decay
2 Jund Charm
2 Electrolyze
2 Counterflux
2 Voilslime
1 Mystic Snake


2 Geist of Saint Traft
2 Kitchen Finks
1 Izzet Staticaster
1 Olivia Voldaren
1 Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice
1 Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius

4 Mana Confluence
4 Pillar of the Paruns
4 Gemstone Mine
4 Reflecting Pool
2 Forbidden Orchard
2 Forest
1 Island/Swamp/Plains
1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth

Okay so here is the deal, we use the one Urborg to help with life loss from Mana Confluence when we can help it as well as keeping counters on Gemstone mines. I just feel like we have to run some number of basics the 2 forests are a hedge against Blood Moon decks as i am sure will will have some kind of Dispel effect in the sideboard… Golgari Charm/Qasali Pridemage?

I would like to fit 4 Fleecemane Lion in the build. I really love that card right now. Sure Liliana can still get to it. But hopefully you can deal with her before things get carried away.

Olivia/Trostani/Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius are cards i don’t have any experience with myself. But they feel super good to me. Trostani might be too cute. But i like the idea of landing almost any planeswalker along side her and sooner or later having a nasty life gain engine running.

This is what i would run if i had a modern event today plus picking up like 5 cards. Olivia/Trostani/Niv-Mizzet, Dracogenius/Sorin, Lord of Innistrad/2 Geist of Saint Traft

Magical Monday on Tuesday 7.22.14

Sorry for the late post guys, got some junk going on in the real world that needed my attention and just didn’t have the list ready to go. Past of my problem is that it is is modern time again and i don’t really know the modern meta, although i am crunching as fast as i can….


Something i think that might be good is something i saw from Kibler, a Pillar of the Paruns build around. And i do really like his list with a few tweaks. But this is not about how i would tweak his list this is how i steal his shell and run.

4 City of Brass
4 Mana Confluence
4 Pillar of the Paruns
4 Gemstone Mine
4 Reflectiong Pool
2 Forest
1 Miren, the Moaning Well (For decks with lots of mans)
x Vesuva/Forbidden Orchard??

But unlike Kibler, i like the idea of a much more control deck and Planeswalkers…

Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver
Ajani Vengeant
Kiora, the Crashing Wave
Ral Zarek
Sorin, Lord of Innistrad
Xenagos, the Reveler
Venser, the Sojourner
Vraska the Unseen

I also like removal.
Abrupt Decay
Lighting Helix

And counter spells

Fleecemane Lion
Qasali Pridemage
Coiling Oracle
Kitchen Finks
Fulminator Mage
Doran, the Siege Tower
Mystic Snake
Murderous Redcap
Huntmaster of the Fells

Oh and all the 2+ color “Charm” spells

Wow that is a list of powerful spells. Assuming 36 non land spells what can we build?

3 Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver
2 Ajani Vengeant
2 Vraska the Unseen
4 Venser, the Sojourner

4 Coiling Oracle
4 Kitchen Finks
4 Mystic Snake
2 Murderous Redcap
2 Huntmaster of the Fells

3 Abrupt Decay
4 Counterflux
4 Voilslime

Gold Control? Ie Venser, is the man he is resetting everything, yes including other planeswalkers.

Did you know there are 15 gold planeswalkers and 12 of them are good in a all planeswalkers deck? I don’t think a deck like that is super good but for fun, maybe?

Okay my Gold Agro deck

3 Domri Rade
2 Sorin, Lord of Innistrad
2 Venser, the Sojourner

4 Qasali Pridemage
4 Kitchen Finks
2 Murderous Redcap
4 Fanatic of Xenagos
2 Anathemancer
1 Hellhole Rats
4 Spark Trooper

3 Abrupt Decay
2 Terminate
3 Lighting Helix

There are a lot of non-mans in the deck but not so many that Domri Rade wont hit. But still puts Venser to work.

Gold Goldfish
4 Lighting Helix
4 Boros Charm
2 Golgari Charm
4 Selesnya Charm

3 Qasali Pridemage
4 Sedraxis Specter
4 Kitchen Finks
4 Fanatic of Xenagos
4 Spark Trooper
4 Giant Solifuge
– 1 land


Now i know i don’t know about 7 years of cards in modern so these are mostly using cards i either remember or have seen being playing in modern by other players. But i think going gold is a real thing here. Also i just happen to have the mana base for going gold vs a normal modern mana base. No fetch lands for me. 😦


Magical Monday 7.14.14

I have been brewing, how about you? M15 is hereish and i managed to hit a pre-release  for a change.

Honestly, i got to knock out a “standard chaos” draft for FNM and do a  sealed pre-release. Went 3-1 on the draft and ended up 3rd, went 2-2 in the sealed. What can i say had a few games when i was in it but was out played aka super fun games and a game each where i was flooded/screwed was no were near being in it and those games were less fun. But over all i think my decks were good maybe needed to mull to 5 against the agro red deck with  land, land, 3 drop wall that makes a 1/1 and 2 six mana spells but i thought hell i have 16 lands left in my deck i could hit a land in the first 4 draw steps right? Nope. Also my opponent curved out in an amazing way and just crushed me completely. My wall and squid would have bought me a few turns but it was a loosing battle at that point.

Alright lets just to the good stuff this weeks deck list: Cord is Back in Town!

3 Elvish Mystic
4 Sylvan Caryatid
4 Courser of Kruphix

2 Kiora, the Crashing Wave
3 Setessan Tactics
4 Chord of Calling

2 Scavenging Ooze
2 Polukranos, World Eater

1 Wasteland Viper
1 Deathrite Shaman

1 Skylasher
1 Fleecemane Lion

1 Daring Thief
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Yisan, the Wanderer Bard
1 Pharika, God of Affliction

1 Reaper of the Wilds
1 Nylea’s Disciple
1 Ephara, God of the Polis

1 Prophet of Kruphix
1 Mnemonic Wall

4 U/G shock dual
4 U/G temple
4 W/G shock dual
2 W/G temple
4 forest
4 island
2 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth


First of all current green standard package of Elvish Mystic/Caryatid/Courser those 3 cards together are just a powerhouse. Kiora, Polukranos and Tactics are our control/removal package.  Ooze is just a powerhouse on its own right now, it is a beating in any deck that uses creatures to attack.

But then we have my idea of a cord tool box in standard today, this tool box by the way is also tooled some to allow Yisan to hit as often as possible. I really would like something like a Whitemane Lion, to reset a few of the creatures but there just is not any one as good as he was at doing that. I know we have Quickling and it is kinda close but i feel it is overly “fixed” but i think i have to try some in the board.

So lets look at the hits in my tool box.


At 1, Wasteland Viper and Deathrite Shaman: both 1/2s which depending on the zerg in your area could be relevant. Viper is a removal spell and then some once and a while. Deathrite is one of the best tool box cards ever printed. He is banded for being too good in modern so play him while you still can.

At 2,  Skylasher and Fleecemane Lion: both of these guys just crush some match ups. Blue decks have issues with the 2/2 pro blue reach power house and almost every deck has issues with a monsterous lion i mean it did when a Pro Tour.

At 3, Daring Thief, Reclamation Sage,  Yisan, Pharika: when theif is good it is amazing, when it doesn’t… i don’t want it. Sage is just a beating like Viridian Shaman was in Mirrodin. Yisan is like birthing pod and cord’s love child with legs. His only down side is he is slow hence cord and one of the five drops. Pharika is just insane. I will play her in ever deck that has men in it as long as she makes sense unlike one of my 4 drops she might get to attack once and a while.


4s, Reaper of the Wilds, Nylea’s Disciple,  Ephara, God of the Polis: Reaper is just another insane magic card if there are creatures to kill and/or watch die he is in.  Disciple is one of those real single use cards, when i want to gain 2-6 hits points a 3/3 body is a nice perk. Ephara, is a draw engine. I could use Eidolon of Blossoms but i would have to warp things to make it fit, Ephara already seems to fit assuming i can get her on the board.

5s  Prophet of Kruphix and Mnemonic Wall: The wall is like eternal witness in modern but instead of a 2/1 you get a 0/5. Not the best, but also not the worse.  If i ever get Prophet down and keep it down for a few turns i don’t think i can loose the game.


I don’t have a sideboard yet. And i don’t know if i will. I mean Khans of Tarkir hits us when? A month maybe two? If there is a tournament that i might hit up i might add it to the maybe list but for now it is just the first of many Cord decks floating around in my head.



Magical Monday 7.7.14

Have you ever had a brewgasm? Like an orgasm but over brewing a mtg deck?

No me either. What a strange idea……

Yes, I am telling a stupid lie, Sorry…

The other night something hit me and i realized that if i swapped my aura and your enchantment dude with Daring Thief then i got to keep them both. Well you control the aura that is enchanting my man so if it has abilities then you get access to those but if says “Enchanted creature has “…” then it practically has no loss of value other then devotion count. And my brain went spinning.

At first i was all like Banishing Lights/Detention Sphere and other strange enchantments like Claim of Eberos. What I think claim is underrated, cool? Lets move on….

But then i slightly more formed list started to form, one with some other bodies to trade off:

16 mans
4 Daring Thief
3 Hero of Iroas
3 Battlefield Thaumaturge
3 Vanguard of Brimaz
3 Triton Cavalry

14 tricks
2 Cyclonic Rift
4 Retraction Helix
4 of some combination of Gridlock/Glimpse the Sun God
4 Triton Tactics

4 things that do things
2 Fate Foretold
2 Ephara’s Enlightenment

4 mana tapper
4 Springleaf Drum

22 lands

We have a few things going on here, first Daring Thief plus a million ways to tap him outside of attacking, aka good news. A sweet couple of heroic interactions to draw cards, make 1/1s or huge attacker/s.

I wanted to add (and might still) a few Sage of Hours, seems like this is close to what we want in a deck to support him but we are not quite there yet, but i could see a singleton or two just to see.

There are faster heroic decks, this is more of a take control deck mid-range deck. There is no counter spells but you could play like you have 0 and have 15 of them in the board siding out some of the cuteness for game 2 or if needed 3.

I need to do the match ups but i think other then mono red this deck is in good shape.

The night i had my bright idea, i hit Facebook to message a friend of mine about my idea. Think he ran with the idea into a much more con-troll-ing version of the deck. He keeps posting winning on Mtgo with his ” poor boy version” of the deck. Think that Daring Thief could go in a few different directions, but i <3s me a good control list with trading posts. Want to trade your Polukranos/Master of Waves for my goat token?


Magical Monday 6.30.14

First off i want to say thanks again to everyone that drafted Conspiracy this Saturday in support of Remmie’s medical bills. We had lots of fun and Remmie really didn’t want to leave and kept arguing with me that he was not tired even though anyone could look at him and see that he was wiped. And special thanks to Todd, for putting the boxes up to support said draft. I want to link their ebay account as they don’t have a web presence other then that and their facebook page. Please check them out, they sell a ton of different things so odds are there is something for everyone. And if you can help them you are helping us.

With that out of the way lets talk magics.

Remmie is set on making a blue/red control deck. Or was until Conspiracy came out and now he wants to just make “Conspiracy decks” for him and his friends. I personally feel that WotC should have let Conspiracy be at least Modern legal, due to the over whelming number of kids who are just tasting some of these older cards and want to go nuts with them but legacy well is just too deep for them at the moment.

Anyway i am getting side tracked.

Remmie and his blue/red control so i have been looking at things trying to develop a plan and i happen to catch this video by Caleb Durward over at and my brain starts running down the rabbit hole.

Izzet Staticcaster
Gorgon’s Head

Hour of Need
Curse of the swine

Izzet Charm
Lightning Strike
Mizzium Mortars
Spite of Mogis

Young Pyromancer
Prohpetic Flamespeaker
Battlefield Thaumaturge

Chandra, Pyromaster
Ral Zarek

Trading Post
Akroan Horse

What the hell has my brain done?

Okay so lets just look at some interactions…

izzet staticcaster + gorgon’s head == deathtouch your team. (thanks Caleb i didn’t play Return to Rav so missed this gem) But one of the things that Caleb ran into during his videos was master of waves… And i suggest Hour of Need. Works on a few levels. One makes master a killable 4/4 that might also take out his team of 1/0s, also makes other problem guys into 4/4s with matching names. Aka open more things to izzet staticcaster + gorgon’s head. Can remove most of the men your opponent might try and block prohpetic flamespeaker with, also can upgrade your men to flying 4/4s…

Seems great but is that enough?

I don’t think so, enter Curse of the Swine. Curse also just happens to be one of the cards Remmie is excited about right now. Mainly when you team it up with Battlefield Thaumaturge.

Two of my pet cards are Spite of Mogis and Young Pyromancer. Seems like a natural deck for them as there is a large number of spells already add in Lightning Strike and Mizzium Mortars and Spite really is another red “Swords to Plowshares”.

Akroan Horse seems like the board stall and feed Hour of Need. Trading Post keeps things moving until we are setup and the rest are VALUE.

Lets see if i can get 36ish cards + lands here….

3 Izzet Staticcaster
2 Gorgon’s Head

4 Hour of Need
2 Curse of the swine
2 Izzet Charm
0 Lightning Strike
3 Mizzium Mortars
2 Spite of Mogis (these could be more charms or Lighting strike but swords?)

4 Young Pyromancer
4 Prohpetic Flamespeaker
2 Battlefield Thaumaturge
3 Akroan Horse

1 Purphoros
0 Keranos
2 Chandra, Pyromaster
1 Ral Zarek

1 Trading Post


4 Temples
4 Steam Vents
? (3) Mana Confluence
Islands and Mountains to hit our 24 lands thinking a few more islands then mountains but only like 1 or 2 more…

1 Izzet Staticcaster
1 Gorgon’s Head
3 Gainsay
3 Negate
3 Anger of the Gods
2 Polymorphous Rush could be Dragon
2 Gridlock

I really like this list and i will have to see if i can get my hands on Izzet Staticcasters and Prohpetic Flamespeakers and see how it plays. But i bet it is like a warm wet happy place.