I first caught a glimpse of this deck watching newly minted Roanoker Todd Stevens's stream, and after seeing a list 5-0 a League, I couldn't help but take it for a spin.
Oketra's Monument has, until now, been known exclusively as one of Amonkhet's premier uncommons for Limited. Limited and Constructed are different animals, of course, but standout cards from the former tend to have potential in the latter. Add in the fact that Oketra's Monument is a cost-reduction effect and you have more to like about it as a build-around.
The key creature for the deck is Hanweir Militia Captain. It's typically difficult to transform, Oketra's Monument is great at flooding the battlefield very quickly. A turn 3 Monument can easily lead to a turn where you make four or more creatures. That battlefield will quickly snowball unless your opponent has immediate interaction.
Knowing this, the list wisely incorporates Selfless Spirit and Archangel Avacyn to protect your position after investing so many resources into it. Conveniently, this pair has natural synergy when things don't come together and you need a sweeper. With enough copies of the cards, you can turn it into a one-sided Wrath that will in all likelihood end the game on the spot.
This Standard format revolves around positioning battles, and while this deck certainly creates sizable armies, its hordes of creatures can be trumped by singular, large threats. Dusk elegantly solves this issue while also giving the deck a great tool in attrition battles alongside Bygone Bishop.
Of course, you can also go over the top of midrange decks by aggressively playing toward Westvale Abbey. Outside of Secure the Wastes, I haven't seen anything create Ormendahl, Profane Prince more easily, and few decks in the current format have a good answer for the card.
You may think a deck full of small white creatures has to be aggressive, but this is really an engine deck. You'll want to mulligan aggressively for Monument, but once the engine is established, you can play whatever gameplan is necessary.
You can go aggro with a horde of creatures. You can control the ground and attack in the air. You can grind your opponent out with Clues and trading 1/1s for value. And you can go big with Westvale Abbey.
That kind of versatility is hard to find, and unless Mardu Vehicles returns in a big way, artifact removal will be on the decline. I'll be keeping my eye on this one.
- 4 Aviary Mechanic
- 4 Bygone Bishop
- 3 Fairgrounds Warden
- 4 Hanweir Militia Captain
- 4 Selfless Spirit
- 4 Thraben Inspector
- 3 Archangel Avacyn