A Horde match is a variant for EDH. In this variant, the players work together to defeat an autonomous deck. Typically, the horde deck is a tribe that would make sense for a massive horde to be attacking the players (zombies, goblins, slivers, eldrazi). Because this is a casual variant, there are a number of different rules and deck lists that you can find out there. This is my version a zombie horde deck with its accompanying rules. I've used this version and this version of zombie horde decks to craft my own deck with its accompanying rules. I'll update this as I test more games with it. Feel free to offer suggestions and feedback.


The object of the game is for the players to defeat the zombie horde. To win, the zombie horde must have no cards in play, in its library, or in its graveyard. In addition to the usual mechanics within the game that could accomplish this goal (mill & graveyard hate), the players can accomplish this through damage. When damage would be dealt to the zombie horde, the controller of the source of that damage selects either Strike the Horde or Burn the Bodies.

Strike the Horde: The zombie horde mills cards from the top of their library equal to the amount of damage dealt

Burn the Bodies: The zombie horde exiles cards from the graveyard. Players may not select which cards are exiled (unless specifically stated by a cards effects as in Scavenging Ooze). Cards are exiled with a last in first out method.

The Players:

-While the players are working together to defeat the horde they are still considered opponents. Cards that affect opponents (e.g. Thalia, Heretic Cathar) affect all other players including the Zombie Horde. The players may attack each other

-The players each take 4 setup turns before the Zombie Horde starts playing. After the final player takes their fourth turn, the Horde takes their first turn (turn sequence for the Zombie Horde explained in the next section)

-Optional: As an optional rule for this variant, players may only use decks that have a humanoid commander (preferably a human).

The Horde:

-For most purposes, the Zombie Horde is considered a player. Cards that reference "all players" include the Horde and the Horde can be targeted by spells/abilities that target players.

-There are some notable exceptions. The Horde cannot become the monarch (e.g. Queen Marchesa), does not cast votes for Will of the Council(e.g. Council's Judgement) or Council's Dilemma(e.g. Expropriate) and does not participate in parleys (e.g. Selvala, Explorer Returned).

-The Zombie Horde does not use activated abilities. (This rule is to keep the deck autonomous)

-If the Zombie Horde needs to make a decision, that decision is made randomly.

-The Zombie Horde has no life and therefore loss of life has no effect on it.

-The Zombie Horde has unlimited mana. It casts every card it draws as soon as it can and can pay any additional combat costs (e.g. Propaganda).

-The Zombie Horde possess an emblem which reads: "If you are unable to draw because your library is empty, you do not lose the game. Instead, at the beginning of your next upkeep, shuffle your graveyard back into your library"

-The Zombie Horde begins its turn after the final player takes their fourth setup turn. The Horde takes a turn between each player thereafter (e.g. After Player D takes their fourth setup turn, the Horde takes a turn, then Player A, then the Horde, then Player B, then the Horde, then Player C, then the Horde, then Player D, etc.). If a player is eliminated, the Horde maintains the total number of turns per rotation (e.g. if Player C is eliminated, when Player B passes the turn, the Horde takes two turns in a row before passing to Player D).

-During its draw steps, the Zombie Horde draws a number of cards determined by the number of turns taken: Turns 1-2 (1 card), Turns 3-4 (2 cards), Turns 5-6 (3 cards), Turns 7+ (4 Cards). Effects controlled by the players can increase this number (e.g. Howling Mine). The Horde then plays all the cards it drew for the turn in the order that it drew them.

-The Zombie Horde attacks each turn. The Horde always attacks the player with the lowest life total with all creatures that are able to attack. If two or more players are tied for the lowest life total, this is decided at random.

-The Zombie Horde never blocks unless a player effect forces it to (e.g. Taunting Elf).

Specific Rulings:

In order to maintain the mechanics of this variant, certain cards do not affect the Zombie Horde and are described below. This list is subject to change.

-Iona, Shield of Emeria does not affect the Zombie Horde if "Black" is the named color.

-Ethersworn Canonist, Ward of Bones, Cornered Market, Angelic Arbiter, and other similar effects do not affect the Horde's ability to cast spells

-Curse of Exhaustion, Arcane Laboratory, Eidolon of Rhetoric, Rule of Law, and other similar effects do not affect the Horde's ability to cast spells

-Nevermore, Meddling Mage, Council of the Absolute, and other similar effects do not affect the Horde's ability to cast spells

-Grid Monitor & Steel Golem, and other similar effects do not affect the Horde's ability to cast spells


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Compare to inventory
Date added 9 months
Last updated 3 months

This deck is Commander / EDH legal.

Cards 141
Avg. CMC 3.22
Tokens 2/2 Zombie
Folders Zombified decks, Things, Retired
Top rank #23 on 2018-03-11
Ignored suggestions
Shared with

Revision 3 See all

8 months ago)

-4 Wight of Precinct Six main
+1 Gavony Unhallowed main
-2 Undead Warchief main
+1 Unbreathing Horde main
+2 Lord of the Accursed main
+4 Tattered Mummy main
-1 Rise of the Dark Realms main
-1 Grave Titan main
+1 Illness in the Ranks main
+40 Walking Corpse main
+1 Endless Ranks of the Dead main
-4 Syphon Flesh main
+3 Liliana's Elite main
+5 Sibsig Host main
-40 Walking Corpse main
+1 Bad Moon main
+4 Miasmic Mummy main
-4 Mass of Ghouls main
+1 Dread Slaver main
+4 Vengeful Dead main
and 93 other change(s)