Exploring Modern Decks in Dominaria United

Exploring Modern Decks in Dominaria United

Michael RappModern

Recently I ran down what I believed were the top five Dominaria United cards for Modern, but now that we have a week of tournaments under our belt, I’d like to take a look at the early standouts. 

It takes a lot for most Standard sets to put multiple cards into decks as a four of in Modern, yet Dominaria United has delivered.

Leyline Binding

Leyline Binding is one of the cards that clearly had a shot to show up in Modern decks in large numbers, and it didn’t disappoint. I originally thought the most likely home would be the Cascade decks, and it did show up alongside Violent Outburst and friends. However, it also has a home in Creativity.


Creativity has taken many forms throughout its time in Modern, from Temur, to Grixis, to Four/Five Color and back to Temur. Four color builds are usually Temur base with either white or black added. White typically gives access to Teferi, Time Raveler and some sideboard cards. However, the Creativity community was divided on whether splashing white to go to a full five colors was worth it for Teferi. 

Some players just preferred a more simple mana base. But now that Leyline Binding exists, I believe the choice to splash white is pretty clear and play the full five colors. After all, the following land combinations will let you cast Leyline Binding on turn two:

Raugrin Triome + Stomping Ground or Blood Crypt

Ketria Triome + Sacred Foundry

Sacred Foundry + Blood Crypt or Stomping Ground

Ziatora’s Proving Ground + Sacred Foundry

Keep in mind any land pairing involving a Triome will need to have the Triome in play on turn one. That being said, a two mana flash answer to any nonland permanent is quite strong for a deck like Creativity, which has a high level of inevitability thanks to Archon of Cruelty

I’d expect to see Leyline Binding to be a mainstay in Creativity going forward, as staying alive through the early turns is the name of the game.


Glimpse combo is one of the first decks I thought of when I saw Leyline Binding. The Cascade archetype has an issue with early aggression because, well, they can’t play most early removal spells or they risk cascading into one. 

Leyline Binding fixes that by having a true mana value of six while still being a reasonable cast on turn two or three. Similar to Creativity, Glimpse has a variety of ways to make Leyline Binding castable on turn two. 

As for what to hit, Glimpse has always had issues with Teferi, Time Raveler because it stops them from casting Glimpse of Tomorrow. And while historically they haven’t had many answers, never mind efficient ones, Leyline Binding pulls double duty. Not only does it answer the Teferi, but it is also a permanent for Glimpse of Tomorrow!

Rundvelt Hordemaster

The tribal lords seemed like a sure thing to show up in Modern, with Voldian Hexcatcher and Rundvelt Hordemaster being the best of the bunch. Merfolk hasn’t put up any significant results quite yet, but Goblins didn’t waste any time making a splash.


Rundvelt Hordemaster has seemingly propelled Goblins to a first place in a Modern challenge almost immediately after being released on Magic Online. Not only is Rundvelt Hordemaster a boost to Goblins’ fair game, it also makes comboing easier. 

A two mana lord is already interesting for Goblins by itself, but Hordemaster also bakes in a lot of resiliency against removal spells by often replacing dead Goblins with fresh ones off the top.

Comboing in Goblins used to involve Conspicuous Snoop and either Goblin Matron or Boggart Harbinger. However, because of the death triggers generated by Hordemaster, a Conspicuous Snoop with a Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker on the top of your library is a kill. 

You use Snoop to target itself and make infinite copies of Snoop. Then you go to the end step and put all of the sacrifice triggers on the stack, for each copy of Snoop you’ll get a Hordemaster trigger. Because you have Snoop in play, you know the top card of your deck and can use Hordemaster’s ability to exile cards until Sling-Gang Lieutenant shows up, allowing you to sacrifice the remaining tokens to win the game.

Serra Paragon

Serra Paragon is possibly the most interesting card in Dominaria United. Doing a pretty convincing impression of a Lurrus has me watching Serra Paragon closely. Obviously the companion text is the strongest part of Lurrus, and Serra Paragon doesn’t have that, but the ability to play lands is also a powerful upside that Lurrus doesn’t have. 

Jeskai Fiddle

Jeskai Stoneblade seems a bit off in the naming convention here, as I believe Oswald Fiddlebender is the star of the show. As such, I’ll refer to this deck as Jeskai Fiddle. 

This is a sweet take on the Jeskai midrange lists, which were incidentally artifact heavy in the first place. Having access to Urza’s Saga and Oswald Fiddlebender makes the toolbox element of Jeskai Fiddle quite powerful. There are a whopping 20 different artifacts in the deck with only one copy, which gives the opponent a lot to potentially play around. 

Beyond the cool Fiddlebender part of the deck, this is the first deck I’ve seen Serra Paragon in, which is awesome. Jeskai Fiddle really puts Serra Paragon to work, too. Excluding other copies of Serra Paragon there are just four cards in this deck that our new Angel friend can’t pick up. Between Oswald Fiddlebender, Goblin Engineer and Breya’s Apprentice, there are a lot of ways to easily put cards in your graveyard to pick up. 

Also, while Serra Paragon’s ability to replay Urza’s Saga may slide under the radar, it’s also incredibly powerful. Construct tokens are going to be huge in this deck, and getting an additional set of them (plus an extra search) is huge when you get to just play Saga from your graveyard for free. 

End Step

It is always exciting, waiting for that first batch of results to come in so that we can see which new cards are showing up. I know that I’m going to continue keeping a close eye on the Modern results that come out of the next few weeks to see if any other Dominaria United cards pop up, I imagine that we’ll see Voldalian Hexcatcher show up before too long.

If you happen to stumble across any more sweet decks featuring Dominaria United cards be sure to send them my way! As always you can find me on Twitter at @RappaciousOne for questions, comments, and feedback. I’ll see everyone right back here next week.