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The Scarab God raids graveyards to create a host of zombies! This deck is more focused on the reanimation effect of the Scarab God than the zombie synergy. My Gisa and Geralf deck is more zombie tribal. This deck is more of a classic Blue/Black control deck that slowly wins through repeated value of reanimating creatures. Like most control decks, it tries to hold up mana until the last opponent's end step. This gives maximum flexible for counterspells, kill spells, draw spells, or reanimating from the grave with the Scarab God. Some powerful zombie cards are included of course.

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Even though this isn't a zombie tribal deck, it's useful to have some cards that synergize with our God's upkeep trigger.

Noosegraf Mob: poops out zombies quickly to help drain life with our God's trigger.

Grave Titan: Efficient zombie token producer on a beater.

Overseer of the Damned: The deck runs a large number of kill spells (including this demon). Every time an opponent's creature dies we get another zombie for the upkeep trigger.

Gray Merchant of Asphodel: Doesn't really need an introduction. A staple win condition in back reanimator decks and a zombie.

Diregraf Captain: drains an opponent if they destroy our zombies. Also acts as a early rattlesnake.

Liliana, Death's Majesty: self mills and creates a zombie token. She transforms any creature she reanimates into a zombie.

Cryptbreaker: creates zombies while filling up the graveyard. Then turns those zombies into card draw

Our God had control issues. He likes to be in charge of who is allowed to live on the battlefield. This is done through boardwipes creatures with ETB kill effects, counterspells, and instant-speed kill spells.


Toxic Deluge: Solid black boardwipe that gets around indestructible creatures.

Life's Finale: Synergizes with theme of the deck by filling an opponent's grave with their best creatures to steal.

Necromantic Selection: Expensive but leaves you with your choice of creature that becomes a zombie.

Damnation: Cheap boardwipe.

ETB Kill Creatures

Fleshbag Marauder + Merciless Executioner: Both get around hexproof and indestructible creatures.

Overseer of the Damned: Expensive but produces zombies as well as killing any threat.

Ravenous Chupacabra: Another unconditional kill ETB creature.

Massacre Wurm: A mini boardwipe that can cause a ton of life loss.

Shriekmaw: Usually casted for its cheap evoke cost so that it immediately goes to the grave for reanimation.

Other Removal Spells

Venser, Shaper Savant: Not a kill spell but can slow down an opponent's tempo. Takes care of permanents that Black can't kill.

Dragonlord Silumgar: Steals any creature or planeswalker. Can create large swings if reanimated at instant speed from the grave during combat.

Hostage Taker: Has the potential to steal an artifact or creature. At the very least it does an Oblivion Ring impression and exiles.

Go for the Throat and Hero's Downfall: Efficiently costed instant-speed removal.


Counterspell: The original is still one of the best budget options.

Arcane Denial: Probably the least annoying counterspell as it gives the spell caster a bit of card advantage. Also helps to negate our own card disadvantage by replacing itself with another card.

Rewind: Our God's Eternalize ability is a bit mana intensive. Rewind allows us to counter something and then have exactly enough mana to Eternalize

Unwind: Another "free" counterspell that allows us to hold up enough mana for an eternalize.

The most efficient way to fill graveyards for our God is to mill ourselves and opponents. The following cards help us achieve this:

Mesmeric Orb: For 2 mana this artifact puts in work. Our God will have lots of reanimation targets in just a couple turns.

Entomb, Buried Alive, and Corpse Connoisseur: Throws our best ETB creatures into the grave.

Careful Study, Compulsive Research, Thirst for Knowledge, Monastery Siege, Fact or Fiction, Forbidden Alchemy, Ancient Excavation and Frantic Search: Blue draw spells that also help us throw creatures into the grave for reanimation.

Hedron Crab: Very cheap and can either mill ourselves or opponents if they are running a lot of juicy creatures.

Champion of Wits: Great ETB card selection. When eternalized she gives a lot of value, drawing 4 and discarding 2.

Altar of Dementia: Someone about to kill our zombies? No problem! Sac them to fill the grave with 4 more cards each.


Updates Add

A few recent updates to the deck:

Unwind is the only card I'm adding from Dominaria. The deck wants to hold up mana to reanimate at the end step. Similar to Rewind, this new counterspell allows me to hold up mana, counter if needed, and then still have mana to reanimate.

Also swapped in Stinkweed Imp. This guy is great at self-milling and provides a pseudo-deathtouch rattlesnake for the early game to dissuade early aggression.

I've put back in Gray Merchant of Asphodel and Illusionist's Bracers which were cut last time. Yes, it's a bit mana intensive to equip the bracers and be able to activate the Scarab God. However, late game it is absolutely crushing to be able to reanimate 2 creatures for the price of 1.

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