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By: ArchGenius, Marcus Rehnberg
Jul 04 2009 9:55am
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I admit it, I've always liked reanimation strategies. There's just something about playing huge nearly invulnerable creatures that fascinates me. I mean who wouldn't like to put one of these into play on turn 2.

Entomb and Animate Dead or Necromancy

Woodfall Primus or Sphinx of the Steel Wind or Hellkite Overlord or Bogardan Hellkite

Sure, I could get large overcosted creatures into play using Hypergenesis

...but that is too much of a one trick pony to me.  Here is the small list of cards that will usually win against (Hypergensis)

Ethersworn Canonist

Counterspell

Force of Will

Memory Lapse

Remand

Mana Leak

Dissipate

Sphinx of the Steel Wind - I won a game against Hypercascade by playing my simple reanimator deck and playing a Fierce Empath searching for the Sphinx.  My opponent played Hypergenesis and my Sphinx was able to hold off an army of overcosted monsters. 

Wrath of God

Damnation

Moat

Hallowed Burial

Sower of Temptation  ... Well, yes you get the idea.

Sure, not all of these cards are guaranteed to win against the Hypergenesis play depending on what creatures you put into play.  But with just one Hypergenesis in the deck, and no way to determine which creatures you will have in your hand when it goes off, it's a very dangerous proposition.  After the first game you pretty much telegraphed your entire game plan to your opponent.  If he can stop that turn 3 play, he wins.  If you get a bad draw and can't pull off that turn 3 play, he wins.  I don't really like that level of non-interactivity.  This just seems weak, especially with a deck that isn't going to do anything on the first and second turns.  No, I'd much rather have a game plan that can survive a set back or two.

Entomb and Animate Dead or Reanimate or Necromancy is a nice combo.  Especially against red or red/green agro decks.

There is of course one disadvantage of playing reanimator.  The bane of the Reanimation strategy is blue.  Blue has the best strategy against reanimation consisting of the block counterspell, parry repulse, and counterpunch Bribery.  Using this strategy, a descent blue deck can and will use your monsters against you before you can get them into play.  And if that wasn't enough, they can always sucker punch you with Trinket Mage for Relic of Progenitus.

Still aggro strategies remain fairly popular, and if I make a deck with a strong match against them, then I can justify having a weaker match-up against control strategies.

So Besides the obvious Entomb what goes good in a reanimator. Let's take a look at the possibilities.

100 Singleton Black Reanimator Possibilities 0-1 Casting Cost  2 Casting Costs 3 Casting Cost 4+ Casting Cost
Multi-Color Black Cards I might like to add   Tidehollow Sculler

Doran, the Siege Tower

 

Sphinx of the Steel Wind

Hellkite Overlord

Broodmate Dragon

Thraximundar

Sedraxis Specter

Sedris, the Traitor King

Reanimator Black Cards

Entomb

Reanimate

Tortured Existence

Volrath's Stronghold

Unholy Grotto

Animate Dead

Dance of the Dead

Life/Death

Undertaker

Rotting Rats

Necromancy

Buried Alive

Makeshift Mannequin

Living Death

Extractor Demon

Staple Black Cards

 

 

Terror

 Fulminator Mage

Shriekmaw

Tombstalker

Well, it's a good start, but I don't think a Mono-Black deck is going to be very good.  So what colors can I combine with Black.  Let's look at the options.

 

A look at Blue in a Reanimator Deck 0-1 Casting Cost  2 Casting Costs 3 Casting Cost 4+ Casting Cost
Blue/Black    

Shadowmage Infiltrator

Psychatog

Mystical Teachings
Reanimator Cards  

Looter iL-Kor

Merfolk Looter

Thought Courier

Thirst for Knowledge

Probe

Careful Consideration

Fact or Fiction

Staple Blue Cards

Force of Will

Ancestral Vision

Mystical Tutor

Brainstorm

 

Counterspell

Mana Leak

Memory Lapse

Remand

Vendilion Clique

Jace Beleren

Vedalken Shackles

 

Glen Elendra Archmage

Venser, Shaper Savant

Sower of Temptation

Tezzeret the Seeker

Blue looks like one of the best possibilities for a reanimator deck, but I'm not sure I can pull it off because I'm currently missing Force of Will and Underground Sea.  Sure I could build a Blue/Black reanimator deck without those cards, but it would feel like I'm playing with Squirrel Nest without Earthcraft.  It would feel like I'm just missing a crucial piece of the deck.  As long as you aren't simply splashing blue, Force of Will is THE most important spell in a blue deck, and Underground Sea is THE most important land in any base Blue/Black deck.  Since these two cards together cost over a hundred dollars, I'm going to have to look for other options.

 

A look at Red in a Reanimator Deck 0-1 Casting Cost  2 Casting Costs 3 Casting Cost 4+ Casting Cost
Red/Black   Terminate

Shambling Remains

Anathemancer

Wrecking Ball
Reanimator Cards Lightning Axe Hellspark Elemental

Gathan Raiders

Jaya Ballard, Task Mage

Hell's Thunder

Bogardan Hellkite

Flameblast Dragon

Rorix Bladewing

Akroma, Angel of Wrath

Staple Red Cards

Lightning Bolt

Firebolt

Grim Lavamancer

Rift Bolt

Incinerate

Ball Lightning

Flametongue Kavu

Blistering Firecat

Red has some amazing targets for reanimation spells, and a lot of them are castable from your hand.  However red doesn't help much in getting creatures into your graveyard, so you can use your reanimation spells.

A look at Green in a Reanimator Deck 0-1 Casting Cost  2 Casting Costs 3 Casting Cost 4+ Casting Cost
Green/Black   Putrid Leech

Maelstrom Pulse

Putrefy

Pernicious Deed

 
Reanimator Cards

Greenseeker

Llanowar Mentor

Wild Mongrel  

Natural Order

Woodfall Primus

Leaf-Crowned Elder

Staple Green Cards

Birds of Paradise

Llanowar Elves

Fyndhorn Elves

Worldly Tutor

 

Tarmogoyf

Sakura-Tribe Elder

Earthcraft

Eternal Witness

Wood Elves

Carven Caryatid

Squirrel Nest

 

Garruk Wildspeaker

Chameleon Colossus

Wickerbough Elder

 

Green has some of the nicest spellshapers, Natural Order, and Woodfall Primus.  These reasons alone make Green a prime consideration for a reanimation strategy.

A look at White in a Reanimator Deck 0-1 Casting Cost  2 Casting Costs 3 Casting Cost 4+ Casting Cost
White/Black   Tidehollow Sculler

Vindicate

Mortify

Stillmoon Cavalier

 
Reanimator Cards Tireless Tribe Peace of Mind  

Angel of Despair

Necromancer's Covenant
Resurrection

Staple White Cards

Enlightened Tutor

Weathered Wayfarer

Swords to Plowshares

Path to Exile

 

 

Oblivion Ring

 

Exalted Angel

Battlegrace Angel

Elspeth, Knight-Errant

Ajani Goldmane

Peace of Mind can be a backbreaker against a burn spell.  And it's quite cute with Squee, Goblin Nabob.  It's also not very useful against control decks. Otherwise white has some of the most useful 1 casting cost spells in the game.

 

So after analyzing the colors, I investigated made up two decks a Jund Dragon Reanimator deck and a Doran Treefolk Reanimator Deck.  I then started testing both of these decks and had pretty good results with both in 2-man queues and the tournament practice room. 

A quick Rant about the 2-man queues:

The 2-man queues have a terrible payout.  I played in 4 of them in one night, won 3 of them, lost 1, and I feel like I just barely broke even.  The reason for this is that the 2-man queues payout in Tempest packs, which the bots won't buy for much more than the entrance fee to the 2-man tournament.  That would normally be fine for me because I have no problem drafting with my winnings.  Especially a set with one the most expensive uncommons to date. Wasteland The problem is I have to pair my Tempest packs with a Stronghold pack in order to draft.  But, Stronghold isn't not found in the store.  It's very expensive to buy just a Stronghold pack from anybody, and I can't win it in a tournament except for a Classic/100 singleton premiere event or 8-man queue.  This is not exactly something I can do that often, and even if I do, winning the Stronghold pack will also include the Tempest packs that I need to draft with it.  This would still leave me with extra Tempest packs I can't do anything with.  If it wasn't for the need to test against strong opponents, to practice for a premiere event, I don't know why anyone would play in a 100-singleton 2-man queue.  It's basically like Wizards taking 2 tickets from each player and giving the winner his 2 tickets back, while keeping the loser's 2 tickets. It's not exactly a thrilling option.

End Rant....

In the end I went with the Doran Treefolk Reanimator deck simply because it seemed a bit more consistant, and had a better sideboard plan. White has some great sideboard options.  So here's the deck.

 

Doran Reanimated
White, Green, and Black Reanimator
Creatures
1 Hellkite Overlord
1 Tidehollow Sculler
1 Wild Mongrel
1 Eternal Witness
1 Dryad Arbor
1 Leaf-Crowned Elder
1 Weathered Wayfarer
1 Wood Elves
1 Shriekmaw
1 Carven Caryatid
1 Greenseeker
1 Sphinx of the Steel Wind
1 Loxodon Hierarch
1 Treefolk Harbinger
1 Wickerbough Elder
1 Tarmogoyf
1 Fulminator Mage
1 Fierce Empath
1 Woodfall Primus
1 Angel of Despair
1 Birds of Paradise
1 Sakura-Tribe Elder
1 Chameleon Colossus
1 Llanowar Mentor
1 Nekrataal
1 Tombstalker
1 Exalted Angel
1 Doran, the Siege Tower
1 Bane of the Living
1 Phantom Nishoba
1 Qasali Pridemage
1 Wall of Roots
1 Duplicant
1 Genesis
34 cards

Other Spells
1 Necromancy
1 Natural Order
1 Sword of Fire and Ice
1 Ajani Goldmane
1 Eladamri's Call
1 Path to Exile
1 Worldly Tutor
1 Enlightened Tutor
1 Entomb
1 Buried Alive
1 Garruk Wildspeaker
1 Swords to Plowshares
1 Makeshift Mannequin
1 Congregation at Dawn
1 Tortured Existence
1 Thoughtseize
1 Animate Dead
1 Wrath of God
1 Reanimate
1 Nameless Inversion
1 Sensei's Divining Top
1 Peace of Mind
1 Damnation
1 Maelstrom Pulse
1 Coalition Relic
1 Nature's Lore
1 Living Death
1 Sword of Light and Shadow
28 cards
 
Lands
1 Windswept Heath
1 Volrath's Stronghold
1 Wooded Foothills
1 Polluted Delta
1 Flooded Strand
1 Savannah
1 Orzhov Basilica
1 Sungrass Prairie
1 Golgari Rot Farm
1 Horizon Canopy
1 Overgrown Tomb
1 Wooded Bastion
1 Selesnya Sanctuary
1 Mirrodin's Core
1 Pendelhaven
1 Mutavault
1 Wasteland
3 Snow-Covered Swamp
1 Bloodstained Mire
2 Snow-Covered Plains
1 Fetid Heath
1 Mishra's Factory
6 Snow-Covered Forest
1 Treetop Village
1 Godless Shrine
1 Temple Garden
1 Murmuring Bosk
1 Undiscovered Paradise
1 Krosan Verge
1 Exotic Orchard
38 cards

Woodfall Primus

 

On to the Tournament Report

Match 1 Threept14Guy - Playing Jund

Game 1 - I start the game playing first with this opening hand.  Is it a keeper? 

Greenseeker and Hellkite are nice together, but I don't have a reanimation spell for the hellkite.  Also the Krosan Verge might allow me to play whatever fat creature I can find with Fierce Empath.  Still, it's not a very fast hand unless I can draw into an Animate Dead or Necromancy quickly.  Still it's not worth throwing back, so I'll keep it.

I play out the Greenseeker and my opponent plays a Kederekt Parasite.  I really don't think the Kederekt Parasite is all that good, so I immediately start thinking if I missed some combo with that card.  While thinking about how the Kederekt could be deadly, I draw my next card, a plains, play the verge and pass my turn.  My opponent then attacks me with the Kederekt Parasite.  I could block and trade the 1/1s while I casually drop a Hellkite into the graveyard waiting for a reanimation spell, or I let it through.  I decide that I'd rather trade it because I'm still wondering how dangerous that mysterious parasite is. Also my greenseeker's main purpose is to set the Hellkite up for reanimation, which I can do after blocking. 

The next turn I draw Natural Order.  Well, that makes trading my Greenseeker away seem pretty stupid!  Well, I simply play a land, play Fierce Empath getting Angel of Despair and hope my opponent doesn't find my Empath threatening enough to kill.    My opponent then plays a Garruk Wildspeaker untaps some lands and then plays the spell that every Reanimation player loves to see, Oona's Prowler.  It's at this point that I start to worry that my opponent might also be playing reanimator.  In which case I might be one opposing Animate Dead away from being hit in the head with my own Hellkite Overlord Still, my opponent isn't missing with my Natural Order play, so I decide to get Woodfall Primus to play it safe.  I have no idea what kind of removal my opponent might have and the Primus kills his Garruk and will most likely survive my opponent's first attempt at removal. 

It turns out that my opponent isn't doing very much, and that Angel of Despair comes down later to deprive my opponent of red mana and more or less seal the game.  I never saw a reanimation spell from my opponent, so that makes me breath a little easier.

game 2 - Playing second, and this is my opening hand.  Is it a keeper?

Although Hellkite is basically a dead card with no way to toss it into the graveyard or play it, this is still a really nice hand.  I have a turn 3 Ajani, and enough Mana to cast a most of the spells in my deck except the reanimation targets, so I keep it.

I draw an Exalted Angel, play out the Birds of Paradise and the next turn morph out the Exalted Angel.  Then Threept14Guy suprises me with a Branching Bolt 2 for 1.  Then we both play out lands and I play (Sakura Tribe Elder), but nothing interesting is happening.  Then I draw a Eladamri's Call with not much out on either side of the field.  What should I get?

Eternal Witness is the safe, slow, and steady way to go, while Chameleon Colossus avoids many of his possible removal spells and provides a decent clock.  I end up going for the Angel of Despair because I could play it in two turns and I want to be able to counter any planeswalkers he might go for.  It ends up being a losing play Threept14Guy has the land destruction and aggro plays to kill me before I can get much else going.

Game 3 - I'm playing first and here is my hand.  It's definitely a keeper.  The real question here is how do you play it? You definitely want to use the top before you sacrifice the Foothills, but you also want to be able to get Doran into play early, which means you're going to want to play Mirrodin's Core early and put counters on it.

 

I ended up playing the Core turn 1, and charged it up.  Then I played the Wasteland, destroyed my opponent's land and played the top.  I drew into a forest, layed down the Godless Shrine and used the top.  The top 3 cards of my library were two lands and a Bane of the Living.  I put the Bane on top, draw it the next turn, then sac the foothills to bury the two remaining lands on top of my library, while also playing out Doran.  During this mana development dance, my opponent has been assembling an army of weenies.  With a Bane in my hand, and Doran on the field, I really like looking at X/1s on the opposing side of the field. 

The next turn I morph out my Bane of the Living and swing with Doran.  My opponent then falls right into my trap by playing out Ashenmoor Liege.  It's one of those plays where you react with the thought, "this is not going to end well for you!"

So, the next turn I wipe away his side of the field, and attack away. My opponent comes back a little afterwards, but still isn't able to stop the momentum of that move.

Match Win (2-1) Current Record (1-0)

Match 2 Wraith 373

game 1, on the draw, and this is my opening hand.  Is it a keeper?

Yes, this is a moderately good hand.  It's not going to win the game on turn 3, but it should be able to put up some adequate defense against an aggro deck.

I would like to give you more information on this match but there isn't a whole lot to tell.  Sometimes you win because of your opponent's poor luck.  Both games I seemed to be getting better hands than my opponent.  I remember him playing blue, but he never countered anything I played.  I was planning on fleshing out this match through replays but due to unforseen difficulties which I will explain later, I never got to replay my matches after the tournament.  I could have done it between rounds but I thought it was better use of time watching other player's games to see what other decks are out there.

Math Win (2-0) Current Record (2-0)

Match 3 - Ludvik - White/Green Aggro/Armageddon

 So, I'm playing second, and here is my opening hand.  I know my opponent is playing White/Green from scouting.  Is this a keeper?

I would say this is a keeper.  Sword of Fire and Ice is not all that powerful against green white because the protection is irrelevant, I don't have enough evasion to get it past their blockers and they most assuredly have artifact removal.  However the Wall of Roots is pretty good at blocking and absorbing early aggressive damage.

I play out my defenses and my opponent plays out some aggressive creatures and we quickly get into a stalemate when my Doran shows up.  He's played out most of his hand, and I draw some large creatures that I just don't quite have the mana to cast.  I am really hoping I can draw some mass removal like Bane of the Living Wrath of God or Damnation before my opponent can get something to punch through or he Armageddons me.  He ends up gets the punch through cards first and takes me out.

 

After initially getting a no-land hand which is an automatic mulligan, I get this hand going first.  Is it a keeper?

I'm only 1 white mana off of a Wrath of God which is quite good against my opponent, I also had a Maelstrom Pulse to hold off the initial onslaught, so I keep it. 

So I start drawing into Buried Alive and I'm able to use it to get Genesis and Sphinx of the Steel Wind into my graveyard.  Meanwhile my opponent plays Call of the Herd and then locks down my mana with Hokori, Dust Drinker.  I'm able to reanimate the Sphinx to give me a way to win this game, but my opponent has the Path to Exile to end my shot at a vicious comeback.

Math Loss (0-2) Current Record (2-1)

Match 4  - Thalai - Blue/Green Heartbeat/Mana Flare Combo

I'm playing first and here is my opening hand.  The night before, I played a practice match against Thalai in the tournament practice room.  He was playing a deck that tried uses Mana Flare, Heartbeat of Spring, multiple Rampant Growth and Fertile Ground type cards to generate a lot of mana, then those lands with Early Harvest or Rude Awakening, using Restock type cards to do it again until he has enough mana to create a deadly Banefire, Tendrils of Despair, Rude Awakening attack, or another finisher.  He beat me on turn 5 the first practice game, and in the second and third practice game I managed to get a sideboarded Ethersworn Canonist into play (by searching for it) and made it impossible for him to combo out.  After the game he said "gg" followed by a "not" which seemed a bit juvenile to me.  Especially when he's playing a deck that seemed to have next to zero interaction with the other playing.  It's not like I put the Ethersworn Canonist in the sideboard just to counter his deck.  It's mainly in there as a way to shut down hypercascade.  The fact that it also hurts his non-interactive strategy is mainly a bonus.  Anyway by checking the replays between rounds I see that he's playing the same deck.

Now knowing his deck is basically creatureless and without creature removal, I examine this opening hand.  Is it a keeper? 

 

Tortured Existence and Swords to Plowshares are likely to be almost dead cards in this match because he's not going to kill my creatures and doesn't have any for me to kill.  On the other hand Tidehollow Sculler is one of the best cards I can get against him, so I keep it.

I end up playing out the Tidehollow Sculler taking his Restock and slowing him down enough to get some early beats.  They whittle down his life total and he plays out a Heartbeat of Spring.  I'm able to search for a Woodfall Primus and hardcast it with the help of the Heartbeat.  I use the Primus to destroy his Heartbeat and set back the combo a little more.  Then I get him on the ropes, but he manages to get a Mana Flare out and uses Cunning Wish for a Constant Mists.  It's here that I wish I had opted for either the red/black reanimator deck or the blue/black reanimator deck or anything other than a White/Black/Green reanimator deck.  One blue counterspell could stop the mists and win me the game.  A decent red burn spell or two could also win me the game.  But I chose the color combination that has to win through combat, so I have little choice but to attack and eat one of his lands each turn.  Eventually he is able to use New Frontiers and get enough lands to combo me out of game one.

Now at least I have some sideboard options.  Ethersworn Canonist goes in obviously, and I also side in Faerie Macabre to fizzle a Restock type effect, Choke because he has lots of basic islands for card drawing, (Hamonic Sliver) and Aura Shards go in to hit Heartbeat or Fertile Grounds, and I pretty much side in all the other creatures so I can side out the bulk of my useless removal spells.

I play first and I'm able to get down a Ethersworn Canonist.  I'm able to use him to gain me a couple of turns to attack my opponent freely.  I also see that Thalai's deck isn't completely creatureless because he has Trinket Mage.  Anyway, I end up building up an attack and eventually get to six lands with a Wild Mongrel and a Makeshift Mannequin in hand.  I play another four mana threat, but totally miss that I could play the Mongrel and leave 4 mana open for the Mannequin.  This turns out to be a mistake as Thalai plays a Cryptic Command at the end of my turn to bounce my canonist and he goes off the next turn.  Wow, I didn't know he actually played spells that interacted with me.  Oh well, even with a decent sideboard plan against him, my deck isn't designed to fight his.

Match Loss (0-2) Current Record (2-2)

 

Match 5 - Platipus10 - 4 Color CitP critters

 Here's my opening hand on the play,  Is it a keeper?

Yes, this is definitely a keeper.  With Fulminator Mage in hand, I'm thinking Genesis might be a good target for Entomb 

I ended up keeping my hand, and Platipus10 and I fight a clumsy, sloppy, game back and forth for a while.  At one point I Treefolk Harbinger for a Doran, then shuffle it away with the (Windswepth Heath) without realizing it.  I eventually beat him by outdrawing him more than outplaying him. 

Game 2 on the draw, here is my opening hand.  Is it a keeper?

 

This is a very risky hand on the draw.  Obviously I'm short on mana, and if my opponent kills my Llanowar Mentor and I don't draw any lands, I'm in serious trouble.  However there is plenty of reason to like this hand too.  It has a plenty of gas if we can get the engine started. 

He gets a very aggressive start on me and I'm barely able to hang on, but I plan out a Living Death to turn the tables around and with a Super Sphinx (see below) I'm able to carry the day. 

 

 Match Win (2-0) Current Record (3-2)

Match 6 - Lundstrom - Blue Green Aggro Control

Before this game starts, my wife informs me that she's going to go for a walk with our baby.  This is good because it means I won't have any distractions for the last and crucial match.  Then I see the next match pop up and I'm paired against Lundstrom, who won the last 100 singleton tourney and who is playing a deck which is a pretty bad match-up for me.

Here is my opening hand going into the first game against Lundstrom, who is playing Blue Green.  Although I don't believe I've played against it before with this deck, I have to assume it's a bad match-up because it has a lot of good cards against me.

This is definitely a muligan.  If you can play Weathered Wayfarer on the first turn, the hand is usually a keeper, but without access to white mana, there is nothing this hand can do other than hope for a miracle draw of a source of white mana.

This game plays out in typical fashion.  Lundstrom plays out solid threats and counters everything I try to do. 

Right about when I'm going to start the second game my wife hops into the house and asks for help.  She tripped on the neighbor's stairs and thinks she might have broken her ankle.  About a minute later the neighbor brings in our baby and to say that my head is out of the game, would be an understatement.  My wife is telling me to continue playing the game while she is sitting in pain because she would feel bad if I missed the rest of my tournament for her sake. We had also made a deal ahead of time that I would have that day off to play in tournament.  I, on the other hand, am thinking only about making sure my wife gets the care she needs.  Eventually I agree to finish the game  while waiting for my mother-in-law to come over to take care of our baby, so we can go to the hospital.  So, I'm basically in play this game out as fast as possible, mode, and not surprisingly, I lose.  It was to a recurring Eternal Witness and Primal Command, however I could have probably lost to an attacking (Sakura Tribe Elder) based on my mental state at the time.

So my mother-in-law finally shows up and we rush off to the hospital, wait forever in the ER and eventually get X-rays and find out my wife didn't break her ankle, but merely sprained it severely.  It's good news, but my wife is unable to put any weight on her leg for 3-4 days.  So taking care of my wife and daughter take up all my time for the next couple of days and I'm not able to get back online for a while.  Still, it could have been worse.   

Match Loss (0-2) Final Record (3-3)

Conclusions:

Even with a terrible showing and a final record of 3-3, I walk away with 2 Tempest packs and 1 Stronghold pack, which I suppose isn't that bad.  It's better than entering three 2-man tournaments for the same cost and winning all three to get 3 Tempest packs.  

There is a lot of diversity of decks out there.  Between my matches and scouting other decks I didn't notice any Mono-Red burn decks that were tearing up the field before sideboards.  I think that even the threat of a sideboarded Circle of Protection:Red has dimished the appeal of a simple burn deck.  I would say that there is about an equal mixture of aggro and control type strategies.  In the end I think some combination of colors that includes Blue is probably the way to go because there are just so many strategies including creature-less, aggro, 2-card combo, etc, and it's hard to fight all of them, except with counterspells.

I think if I play Reanimator again, it's definitely going to be a UB variant with perhaps a splash color of red or white.

Well, thanks for reading and remember, there is more to life than winning and losing.

- Marcus, the guy with a name on Magic Online that is entirely too long...

 (Shuyin Knight of Zanarkand on Magic Online)

 

4 Comments

You should run undead by Anonymous (not verified) at Mon, 07/06/2009 - 14:08
Anonymous's picture

You should run undead gladiator if you aren't already. It is one of the best ways to get targets into your graveyard. Makes a hand with entomb/buried alive , fat, and a reanimation spell awesome.

The gladiator seems adequate. by ArchGenius at Mon, 07/06/2009 - 16:19
ArchGenius's picture

The gladiator seems adequate. I'm not sure I'd go as far as to to say it's one the best ways to get targets into your graveyard.

I haven't tried it, but it is certainly good enough to warrant including. The only problem is that it's a bit slow. Using the Gladiator you can't reliably get a reanimation target into play until turn 4. (Cycle turn 2, discard turn 3, reanimate turn 4. I think Rotting Rats may be a bit quicker.

Man.. I remember this match by platipus10 at Mon, 07/06/2009 - 16:40
platipus10's picture

Man.. I remember this match it was terrible for both of us. Neither of us could draw any lands to get started and there was sloppy play on both sides of the table. It was nearly a mirror though, I was GWB also, not 4c CitP, but you had the bigger creatures to ride it out.

Gladiator must have by Anonymous (not verified) at Mon, 07/06/2009 - 21:05
Anonymous's picture

Yeah undead gladiator is really good, the problem with rotting rats is that it is not a powerful card. Undead is blacks "genesis" providing a nice reusable graveyard effect. Be able to sift through multiple dead cards during a single upkeep is a really nice option in the late game. It seems like a must have target for a turn 1 entomb.