Grave Defiler

Legality

Format Legality
Noble Legal
1v1 Commander Legal
Vintage Legal
Vanguard Legal
Legacy Legal
Archenemy Legal
Planechase Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Unformat Legal
Commander / EDH Legal

Printings View all

Set Rarity
Apocalypse Uncommon

Combos Browse all

Grave Defiler

Creature — Zombie

When Grave Defiler enters the battlefield, reveal the top four cards of your library. Put all Zombie cards revealed this way into your hand and the rest on the bottom of your library.

1,B: Regenerate Grave Defiler.

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Grave Defiler Discussion

Welch on Casual Zombies

1 day ago

I suggest you cut:

Welch on Casual Zombies

1 day ago

Lord of the Accursed is cheap and even standard legal (in case you want to convert this deck at some point).

Liliana's Mastery is another anthem effect, that adds at least 6 power to the board for 5 mana.

Cryptbreaker is still somewhat affordable and a great source of card draw. Could replace Grave Defiler.

Undead Warchief is an even stronger zombie lord.

titanreaver on Zombies from around the house.

1 month ago

I like your list. In my 20 years of playing I have always had a Zombie deck in my collection. My current list is here at The dead may walk it plays pretty similiar to yours. One card i would suggest is Grave Defiler it lets you refill your hand and get more dudes to play. One thing i dont currently use but you could try is Corpse Harvester to search for lords or whatever you need at the time. Another card i used to play a lot is Shepherd of Rot back in the day when i played things like Sangrophage and such to play a quick aggro game. Hopefully that helps in some way.

hoardofnotions on gisa and geralf zombie

5 months ago

looks like a solid deck! I have a couple ideas that i hope will improve your deck!

Nephalia Academy, Radiant Fountain and Waterveil Cavern could be upgraded, maybe Terramorphic Expanse, Nephalia Drownyard, Drownyard Temple, Bojuka Bog

Chronic Flooding, Corpse Churn, Strategic Planning, Forbidden Alchemy, Mesmeric Orb could be a clever way of adding cards to the graveyard

Sol Ring is a stable in commander, more mana rocks? Dimir Signet, Worn Powerstone, Gilded Lotus

Raise Dead dosen't seem strong enough. maybe Beacon of Unrest?

Exhume, Gnawing Zombie, Grave Peril, Gravepurge, Moan of the Unhallowed could be possible cuts

Secrets of the Dead is awesome! maybe swap for or add River Kelpie as well!

Fleshbag Marauder is super good!

Grimgrin, Corpse-Born is great!

Skithiryx, the Blight Dragon seems out of place

Rise from the Tides seems out of place as well

Call to the Grave is very good

Death Baron, Ghoulcaller Gisa, Grave Defiler, Graveborn Muse, Gravespawn Sovereign, Lich Lord of Unx, Lord of the Undead, Noxious Ghoul are some zombies that i think could improve your deck!

Kalitas, Traitor of Ghet isn't a zombie but makes them and provides a good effect for commander!

Maybe add a some sources of life gain as well, Whip of Erebos is a good one

Havengul Lich is amazing with Rooftop Storm!

PookandPie on Baby's first Zombie deck

6 months ago

So.... what kind of advice were you wanting? I have a fair amount of experience with Zombies for whatever it's worth (I've had a Zombie deck since I've begun playing Magic back in 2006 or so, and it's worked well enough without major overhauls since 2009). Zombies can do aggro, midrange, or even extend into combo, so I'll merely list off a grouping of cards so you can decide better in which path to go:

Grave Crawler is among your few options for 1 drop zombie that's worth anything. You have 1, but you should look into obtaining 3 more for a full set. Similarly, there's Sarcomancy and Diregraf Ghoul if you can't obtain more Gravecrawlers.

Gempalm Polluter is the best late-game two drop you could add to the deck. Yes, it's a 2 drop, you should never be casting it. Cycling it to make your opponents lose life is extremely good. Even better, you can return it to hand with things like Lord of the Undead to continue utilizing your reach on your opponents (perfect for breaking stalemates).

Lords- Lord of the Undead, mentioned above, Death Baron, Cemetery Reaper, Undead Warchief. Lord of the Undead enables shenanigans with Gempalm Polluter and Korlash, Heir to Blackblade (this lets you ramp out your lands extremely hard, making your Korlash on field gigantic and giving you plenty of mana to cast your Zombies with). Death Baron is just solid all around and is probably the best of the Zombie lords, while Cemetery Reaper isn't anywhere near as costly but is still very useful. Undead Warchief costs more than the others, but also provides twice the power buff and cheapens your other zombies- which is powerful as all hell. Zombie Master is another lord that can be included, and he's extremely powerful with Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth to make your whole Zombie army unblockable (also good for protecting your army against sweepers).

General advice: Get this down to 60 cards. Use 22-24 land, and drop a bunch of the chaff zombies.

If going for aggro, securing decent 1-2 drops is extremely important. Grave Crawler, Diregraf Ghoul, Highborn Ghoul, etc., will be the cards your opponents see and have to deal with the most. Diregraf Colossus could be fun in either the aggro or midrange ideas, and it's not too pricey, either.

If going for midrange, Undead Warchief is invaluable. A method of drawing or obtaining card advantage is also important in a midrange build- Grave Defiler and Graveborn Muse are pretty decent. Similarly, you can cantrip off of Gempalm Polluter to make people lose life while you continually draw more cards, but that requires an engine to bring it back to your hand (like Lord of the Undead). This also beats stalemate boardstates.

If you're doing a sacrifice combo kind of deck, Carrion Feeder is incredible, as is Living Death. Carrion Feeder works very well with multiples of Grave Crawler to beat a stalled game state. If you splash blue for Diregraf Captain, sac'ing and re-casting Gravecrawler can be a win condition.

Self mill isn't all that important when you could just cast Grave Defiler and put Zombies straight into your hand. Unholy Grotto is still a good card to run, same as Lord of the Undead if you want the recursion.

Midrange wants Cabal Coffers and Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx. Aggro maybe just wants Nykthos.

Gray Merchant of Asphodel is fun in black-heavy decks, is a zombie, and is probably better than each other 5cmc+ zombie in this deck.

Hope this comment wasn't too long and you find something you like in it. Just remember: Keep yourself limited to 60 cards to maximize the consistency of your deck, and try to play with more 4 ofs and 3 ofs than 1x card slots.

Lordquinton on Zombie Powder

7 months ago

Corpse Augur I did have in, but I took out due to the uncontrolled lifegain, but now that I have added more control into the deck I will have to look at it again.

Carrion Feeder is on the short list. The local store got in a new shipment of EM and I grabbed a pack friday night, but no dice. I did get a wasteland and that halted any plans of an EM draft firing.

Corpse Connoisseur is another I've been looking at, and should probably get next chance I get. I was going to put Grave Defiler instead, it doesn't fetch a specific card, but it can get more into my hand, but the Connoisseur is pretty much a tutor. Kinda looking to replace as many spells with creatures as I can, as long as they are zombies. which brings us to:

Overseer of the Damned I have 1 non-zombie in the deck which is the Grave Titan, and only because it's so good, but I'm very limited in what I can do with it, once it's dead (Which happens very fast) there's not much I can do to get it back, but I'll put it on the maybe list.

Aondail on Dawn of the Dead

7 months ago

love this deck right off the bat - though there are a few cards im just not sold on Diabolic Revalation being one of them - id just rather play something like Diabolic Intent

Boneknitter could be something to consider for this deck - to save some of your less expendable Zombies but i can understand why it wouldnt make the cut.

Some consideration could also be given to Empty the Pits

I always like to have a way to kill people without having to attack as sometimes its just not possible - Gempalm Polluter can let you do that. As can Lich Lord of Unx and Vengeful Dead

This deck also seems to lack a tonne of ways to draw cards - might i suggest some more draw effects - Grave Defiler might be one to consider since you have 34 Zombie Creatures in your deck for her to hit, i would expect you to draw around 2 cards almost every time you cast her.

I like the fact you haven't overloaded on planeswalkers - but Liliana, Heretical Healer  Flip should likely be in your 99 somewhere as she can make a Zombie and her Ult can do some kind of silly things.

Necromancer's Stockpile is also a pretty good card for this deck - as i feel it can set up some pretty fun plays with Rise of the Dark Realms, Zombie Apocalypse, and Gisa and Geralf. Quest for the Gravelord could also be a kind of an ok play - though it could also be slightly underwhelming.

Risen Executioner could also find a spot in this deck as it is a Zombie Lord (though a little underwhelming) and with a few of the self graveyard control mechanics you have you can keep his cost to be semi-reasonable.

Zombie Trailblazer could be another option for this deck as a way to give Grimgrin unblockable for the commander damage kill.

A few of the cards i felt were kind of underwhelming - Diregraf Ghoul (vanilla 2/2's for 1 are saddening late game), Liliana's Elite (is pretty meh early game), Liliana Vess (i think you can just do better with Heretical Healer), Appetite for Brains (a really random 1 of effect), Buried Ruin (really you only want to combo this with Grimoire), and Secrets of the Dead (outside of a couple interactions this card will be a dead card a large chunk of time)

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