Geralf's Messenger


Format Legality
Noble Legal
Leviathan Legal
Magic Duels Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Vintage Legal
Modern Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Casual Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Dark Ascension (DKA) Rare

Combos Browse all

Geralf's Messenger

Creature — Zombie

Geralf's Messenger enters the battlefield tapped.

When Geralf's Messenger enters the battlefield, target opponent loses 2 life.

Undying (When this creature dies, if it had no +1/+1 counters on it, return it to the battlefield under its owner's control with a +1/+1 counter on it.)

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Geralf's Messenger Discussion

xyr0s on ZOMBIESSSSS (Modern)

2 days ago

Sarcomancy is not modern-legal.

Other than that, I think your deck is a bit too cute on synergies, and a bit too little direct face-melting. In particular you have 8 supporting artifacts and 3 enchantments, that doesn't do anything on their own. Door of Destinies sticks out as the worst of them, due to its casting cost - it acquires counters when you play a creature of the chosen type, but by the time you have door in play, you've already played most of your hand. Besides, playing something that doesn't impact the board state in turn 4, is not what you'd want to do in most games of modern.

I suggest going up to 4 Gravecrawler, and at least 3 Geralf's Messenger. Fleshbag Marauder isn't bad either, and I belive Smallpox could be a pretty good support card, since your deck is good at getting something out of the graveyard.

Chasmolinker on Mono Black Devotion

3 days ago

saturn999 I understand where you're coming from. But the deck either curves into Gary draining for 10+ on turn 5 or it gives you off curve Geralf's Messenger and you wind up at 5 or less life because of it. At that point resolving Gary is the only out. But when you do go off, that resilient 3 devotion really adds up and swings the game back in your favor.

DankStompy It seems I left out some key details in that statement. I think he was using Grim Flayer and dumping his fetchable red sources in the graveyard. I'm trying to think back to it, but I think Relic of Progenitus was simply forcing him to exile every card in his yard including the lands. I landed a Surgical Extraction early on and hit all of his Verdant Catacombs. It eventually got to the point where he had no red shock lands in his deck and was only able to draw into red sources. I don't really remember the exact sequence to be honest. All I know is that the combination of Grim Flayer, Phyrexian Obliterator, Surgical Extraction, and Relic of Progenitus left him with no red mana in play or in his deck towards the end of the game.

DankStompy on Mono Black Devotion

4 days ago

saturn999: in mono black devotion, Geralf's Messenger is mandatory for the same reasons as Strangleroot Geist in green stompy decks. its mana cost gets your devotion up, and the undying helps it stay up.

Chasmolinker: how are you exiling lands that produce red mana (or any mana for that matter) with Relic of Progenitus? it only exiles cards in graveyards. but the only lands that would be there are fetchlands. so i'm not sure how you could "exile all of his red mana sources"

saturn999 on Mono Black Devotion

4 days ago

how has Geralf's Messenger been working for you? there are times when i draw in to him that i just feel like i would've rather drawn a cheaper creature or a kill spell. aside from that, the -2 life to my opponent is cool but i just don't know if he's worth keeping in my deck. i do like your build however. just curious. any thoughts on Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet? i think he could put in work but we already have obliterators. anyhow, take care.

saturn999 on Black Death

5 days ago

this is a great build. +1d before, thought id comment. i was so sure about running Geralf's Messenger in my deck and after a ton of playing i just find that he is not what i'd like to play when i have the mana available. granted, that's me and not you. i traded him out for 4x Gifted Aetherborn. the deathtouch/ lifelink really make people think twice about swinging in for combat and me gaining the life is more important at times than burning my opponent for 2 on the ETB of messenger. also if i may ask, how has Relic of Progenitus been working for you? i run Leyline of the Void but have yet to actually draw it or play it. take care.

Force_of_Willb on Shade of the Past

1 week ago

There are many ways to build mono black, and there aren't many different cards that I can suggest that haven't been included in your maybe list. Typical builds of mono black that has had some success in modern include Zombies or Vampires. The deck formula is usually the same. ~22 lands, ~26 creatures (8 1-drops, 8 2-drops, 6 3-drop, 4 4+ drops), and ~12 disruption spells consisting of discard and removal. Some problems I see with your current deck is that the curve doesn't flow as your lowest creature CMC is 3 and you would only have about a 17% chance to have one in hand by turn three. Another problem with mono black is that it runs out of gas compared to other colors, your current build has only 2 draw spells (and not a great one at that).

If i was to build i would try out something like this: Creatures (in order or preference):

1 - drops (8): Gravecrawler ($) or Bloodsoaked Champion / Dread Wanderer (budget) - recursion, threats that continue late game and can recover after a sweeper (maybe even one you cast yourself)

Shadow Alley Denizen - makes other creatures difficult to block (worse against other black deck matchups)

Typhoid Rats - unfavorable to block, trades favorably on defense late game

Hex Parasite - Usual for removing counters / killing plainswalkers (Meta Choice)

Vampire Lacerator, Guul Draz Vampire, or Cryptbreaker, Diregraf Ghoul - choices if you build vampires or zombies

2 - drops (8): Bloodghast, Scrapheap Scrounger - recursion threats

Gifted Aetherborn - Vampires - difficult to block, gains life, good on defense

Most modern decks use Dark Confidant $$$ - some budget options to help draw cards could include Glint-Sleeve Siphoner, Pain Seer

3 - drops (6): Vampire Nighthawk is the best option in the three spot and should be a 4x of.

if building zombies you have other options, usually they use the 3 spot for lords DeathBaron ($), Diregraf Colossus, or Lord of the Accursed (budget) pumps and makes blocking harder.
Geralf's Messenger can remove 4 life without even attacking, trades favorably once and gets bigger - downside is the coming into play tapped. or Plague Belcher which is good if you have a gravecrawler to target the negative counters.

Ruin Raider and Grim Haruspex can hep draw you cards to keep you gassed.

4+ Drops (4): These are you finishers, if budget is not an option than Phyrexian Obliterator is the choice.

For zombies you could try a combination of Gray Merchant of Asphodel and Korlash, Heir to Blackblade as the legend multiples rule doesnt really count against him. Grave Titan could be an option too.

Vampires the choice is Vampire Nocturnus

Budget considerations include values cards like Nekrataal/Ravenous Chupacabra or Desecration Demon which has seen some success before.

For your removal package you need to think about a balance that supports your deck. If you are playing aggro with creatures that have recursion than hand disruption that targets instants and sorceries are weak. I would focus on creature removal with high kill spells and Harsh Scrutiny. If your creatures are weak to removal or have high amounts of evasion then the protect package Duress would be better. Obviously cards like Thoughtseize which targets both is better, but stick to one type that best suites the deck you build and place the other type in the sideboard.

For lands I would cut to 22, they can be all swamps but you can try out cards like Leechridden Swamp/Piranha Marsh/Desert of the Glorified/Ifnir Deadlands/Scavenger Grounds (meta choice) or Terramorphic Expanse/Canyon Slough/Fetid Pools if speed isn't too important

LuxCannonator on Dining for Demons.

1 week ago

Undying is a replacement effect, it is not casting so Butcher Ghoul and Geralf's Messenger would not trigger Diregraf Colossus. However, Gravecrawler would since it is being cast.

Relentless Dead could work very well in here. It would keep up with the tempo and give more interaction with Diregraf Colossus

LuxCannonator on Delirious Scarab Nonesense

1 week ago

I love tribal decks. I think they're highly underutilised these days (except Elves and Merfolk) +1 from me, seems like a fun deck.

Here are some cards to think about.

Budget: Diregraf Captain, Ammit Eternal, Liliana's Reaver, Unbreathing Horde

Bordline Budget:Grave Crawler, Cemetery Reaper, Relentless Dead

Non-Budget: Death Baron, Geralf's Messenger, Lich Lord of Unx, Lord of the Undead

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