Puresteel Paladin decks have been somewhat popular in Standard as of late, but the deck has always had one major problem: You can only play four Puresteel Paladins. Until now, that is. Mentor of the Meek is a new card in Innistrad that hasn’t seen a whole lot of hype, and fortunately for us, that means you can preorder them for a relatively low price. ($3.50 on CoolStuffInc at the time of this writing.) However, this is a card that has some serious potential in Standard. Any equipment with Living Weapon will trigger both Puresteel Paladin and Mentor of the Meek, doubling the opportunities for card-draw. With both of these card-drawing creatures working in parallel, we can create a fairly powerful deck, even without the Swords and Batterskulls that a more expensive build might have. Here’s the list I came up with:
4 Mentor of the Meek
4 Puresteel Paladin
4 Signal Pest
2 Mikaeus, the Lunarch
3 Kemba, Kha Regent
2 Accorder's Shield
4 Flayer Husk
Puresteel Paladin’s most important function is drawing a card whenever you play an equipment. Ideally, this draws you into more equipment to play, or more creatures for Mentor of the Meek. Once you have a few on the board, being able to equip everything for free can make Mortarpod and Kemba, Kha Regent much larger threats than they would be otherwise.
Mentor of the Meek could potentially draw you a card for every single creature and living weapon in the deck. Unlike Puresteel Paladin, the draw doesn’t come free, but 1 mana isn’t too high a price to pay.
Mikaeus, the Lunarch is a late-game bomb that will slowly turn your tiny creatures into huge threats. Your opponent is forced to try and deal with this immediately, or face an army of 2-, 3-, or even 4-power creatures.
Flayer Husk is as cheap as it gets for a living weapon. It triggers both Puresteel Paladin and Mentor of the Meek for only 1 mana, and can be used to give another creature a small boost when the Germ dies.
Sickleslicer is pretty unimpressive as far as equipment goes, but it’s still a living weapon, which makes it the next-cheapest way to trigger both Puresteel Paladin and Mentor of the Meek. The equip cost is rather high, but with a Puresteel Paladin on the field, that won’t matter anymore, and +2/+2 is enough to make any small creature a threat.
Accorder's Shield serves as a free way to draw a card from Puresteel Paladin, and the toughness boost should be enough to stop most aggressive creatures in their tracks. It can also be used to protect any creature from a Lightning Bolt, and can make Kemba survive a Dismember.
Dispatch is an amazing removal spell with this many artifacts in the deck. Since this deck isn’t as fast as some others, you’ll need that removal to help you survive while you assemble your army.
With half the set still waiting to be revealed, it’s impossible to know what the new Standard environment may look like, so it’s hard to determine just how well this deck might fare. Regardless of its competitive ability, this deck is a lot of fun to play, and can be very difficult to stop once it gets going. A flood of tokens can be difficult to deal with, and with Mentor of the Meek keeping your hand full, not even a Day of Judgment will fully stop you. If you enjoy playing with tokens, and aren’t afraid of a few Germs, this may be a great choice for the upcoming Standard.
As always, if you have any questions or comments, you can find me on the forums under Twinblaze, on Twitter under @Twinblaze2, or simply leave a comment below.