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Saturday, July 14, 2018

Magic the gathering Premium Deck Series: Graveborn: Worth the buy for EDH?

November 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Review


So far this is what has been spoiled.

Creatures (13)


1 Avatar of Woe

1 Crosis, the Purger

1 Inkwell Leviathan

1 Sphinx of the Steel Wind

1 Terastodon

1 Verdant Force

1 Blazing Archon

2 Putrid Imp

2 Hidden Horror

1 Faceless Butcher

1 Twisted Abomination

Spells (23)

1 Reanimate

1 Entomb

1 Zombie Infestation

1 Cabal Therapy

2 Last Rites

2 Sickening Dreams

3 Exhume

3 Duress

3 Animate Dead

2 Buried Alive

2 Diabolic Servitude

2 Dread Return

Lands (24)

21 Swamp

1 Polluted Mire

1 Ebon Stronghold

1 Crystal Vein

Price Wise

Well… if it is price wise, this deck is worth buying at least 1 set. Thanks to Entomb. If you got the spare cash, get 4. Entomb is legal in Legacy. You may have a chance in reselling it if you need cash… however I can’t say for sure about the price…

EDH Point of View

In terms of EDH point of view, there are a few decent card choice. Let’s go through one by one:


Avatar of Woe:

What a Bitch! I have to admit, this is one of the good cards. In the late games, there are bound to have a lot of Wrath of god effects, and if you are playing black, chances are you may have Damnation or Mutilate in your deck too and use them. So after a while, chances are creatures die goes to graveyard. Once there are 10 creatures in all graveyards, this bitch will just cost 2 black mana to come out. It isn’t that you can’t afford it, but there will be more mana for you to use for other spells in hand. Moreover it can destroy any creature if it can target it. And seriously, creatures with protection from black are less than 50 in the entire mtg library… and there are less than 50 creatures cards that has shroud too…

Good card to have.

Crosis, the Purger

Let’s discuss Crosis in 2 avenue, as a general and his possible deck list and as a creature itself.

Let’s start as a general and his possible deck list, personally the color it host are powerful. Blue is overpowered, black has a lot of solution to creatures and tutors and red has a lot of firepower. But based on these colors, blue is the only color that can deal with enchantments by bouncing or countering them. All 3 colors has strong flyers. Blue have a lot of infinite combo too. And to synergy with graveyard and discard, black has plenty to play with. These 3 colors can allow the player to have access to strong control elements and powerful card advantages engines.

After reading a few possible deck lists, the “wheel of fortune” effects seems to be most interesting. Casting Wheel of Fortune or something similar and attack plus activate Crosis and make opponent discard some cards seems a good profit.

As a creature, 6/6 flyer with possible card advantage. There is no way you can name a bad color because you can know your Opponent’s color by looking at the general. So this shouldn’t be a tough creature to use.

Blazing Archon, Terastodon, Sphinx of the Steel Wind, Verdant Force:

If you are planning to use Crosis as your general, then creatures aren’t useful. But they will be if you plan to build other decks that may have the related colors. Blazing Archon is a Moat with legs. Terastodon is a 9/9 and answer to 3 anything but creatures. Sphinx of the Steel Wind is almost like Akroma, Angel of Wrath plus you can slap an black enchantment on it but Akroma can’t. Verdant Force produce Saprolings for every players turn.

All has great effects, good to have. If you can’t find any use for them yet, you can always keep them till you found a use for it.

Inkwell Leviathan

Well, I believe Inkwell Leviathan has a paragraph on it’s own. Basically because it is blue. Is this a good creature, yes it is. But is it good enough for EDH? I personally don’t know because it doesn’t give a solid vantage to controller. BUT it has islandwalk, but if opponent doesn’t have any island, there is trample to deal damage. Shroud is wonderful which makes it very hard to die…

So what you guys think about it? Hmm…

Twisted Abomination

Very nice card, it has 2 purposes. It can help you ramp, and it can be 5/3 regen creature. After you swamp cycled, you can reanimate it. But that must be a desperate situation…

Putrid Imp, Hidden Horror, Faceless Butcher

Putrid Imp, good for dredge deck in Legacy. In EDH? Hmm… I don’t think so…

Hidden Horror, it is good for this deck itself, but I rather use something else like Demonic Collusion for EDH. Yes, you get a 4/4 body. But what use does that body does?

Faceless Butcher, an Oblivion Ring for creatures with legs. It can answer to those indestructible creatures, but when it dies, you still get to see it again… personally I don’t like it. It does not solve the problem at all. It merely delay…

Reanimation Spells

Animate Dead:

well… this is a graveyard based deck isn’t it? This card is a 2 mana enchantment that can target Any creature in Any graveyard! Yes, another way to kill that creature is destroying the enchantment, but 2 mana is cheap in EDH terms and it can allow you develop your board.

Diabolic Servitude

I never knew this guy exist until I saw this Graveborn deck list. Hahaha! But it is a great card! You can use Diabolic Servitude and bring back a creature cheap; cast Damnation without regards of your own creature as Diabolic Servitude will just come back to your hand when the creature it target dies. And you can cast it again targeting a new creature! Hell! You can blow up the whole world again and do it again and again until someone gets annoyed and find a way to destroy this enchantment. Classic Trolling.


Exhume is used because the chances that a non-reanimation deck has a creature that give a huge advantage to him is in the graveyard early. So reanimation players can safely discard or bury their creatures into their graveyard as soon as possible and cast the cheap Exhume and by pass their negative point, which is allowing opponent to get a free creature at no cost. It is a wonderful card to use not just in EDH.


Reanimate is the fastest and cheapest way to get your fat ass creatures into play from graveyards. Yes… I am using the word GraveyardS. I am gladly lose a huge portion of my life to gain an advantage. For example:
first turn Entomb, bury Sheoldred, Whispering One, second turn, Reanimate Sheoldred. Now I not only have board control, but a 6/6 beater and I may get a free creature if there is any creatures in my graveyard.


If you are worrying about the life, you may entomb Wurmcoil Engine for serious life gaining. But to me, Wurmcoil Engine is too expensive for my wallet, I use Chancellor of the Dross.

I hope you get the idea.

Dread Return

A flashback -able Zombify. The good thing is, this guy can be use twice. This guy is a great option. But I never seems to use the flashback cost. I hardcast it 90% of the time… serious, I don’t know why…

Putting to the Grave


What can I say about this card? Basically the core reason why I want to make this article is this card. First, the price is still going crazy for this card.

Second it is a 1 mana buried alive for 1 card, although you lose 1 card, but if you are going reanimation, this shouldn’t be a problem for you.

Third, it does not just buried a creature, you can buried ANYTHING! Cards with flashback are going to give you more choices too. You may use Eternal Witness to get any card you Entomb back too.

The flexibility of this card is high, it is a great to card to have. Since legacy is legal also, this card is going to be very playable for your future use.

Buried Alive:

Tutor for 3 cards. If you play green, this card is going to generate card advantage for you. If you choose Genesis, Yavimaya Elder and any creatures that can help you in the long run, for example, Sheoldred, Whispering One or a cheaper version is Fleshbag Marauder.

Of course there are more to just this example, but I have a friend that uses zombie theme edh deck can abuse his Buried Alive more. As much I hate to say it, his zombie edh deck has a lot of synergy


Cabal Therapy, Duress:

Bad choice… Cabal Therapy is good for decks that goes combo or control in other formats that legalize it. Where 4 copies of card are allowed. However in EDH, there can be no 4 copies in any deck, and the probability of you using it first turn, not sure what he may have in his hand, may result in not hitting any cards at all. Although he may reveal his hand to you, but it does not give you any advantage in any time soon. EDH isn’t a fast format, the action starts usually turn 5 or 6, unlike Legacy or Vintage, whoever has the First Turn has already have a lead. If you are looking to get this card, buy from friends or get it singles, unless you want the new art.

Duress is still a good first turn play card, allowing you to choose from artifacts, enchantments, instant, sorcery and Planeswalkers! However, it is a bad top deck card… I rather put a bomb spell in my deck like Mind Twist instead of this card.

Zombie Infestation

I love this card, but not in EDH… it does not able to fulfill my combo, a handful of Squee, Goblin Nabob, thus generating a lot of tokens in the long run. But the fundamental rules of EDH is that there can only 1 copy of any legal cards. So, even with the general does give both black and red, you still get to sacrifice a card to gain a zombie token. So it does not profit at all… moreover, a 2/2 zombie token does not help much…

However, if you are planning to use it as a discard outlet, this guy does help, but there are better choice out there. For example, Demonic Collusion and Undead Gladiator.

Last Rites, Sickening Dreams

I believe I have to put these 2 together. Sadly neither of them seems able to help much in EDH games… First of all, both of them need cards to use for a good effect. Second, they are terrible top deck cards. Third, they can’t achieve what is often seen in a EDH games, epic creatures. Last Rites is good if you are playing 1 against 1 EDH games. But it still doesn’t help because of the casting is 3, and it can’t target Bojuka Bog! WTF! Most of the graveyard removal has casting cost of zero to three…


In Summary

So… is Graveborn a good product to help you in EDH? Personally, it does helps. EDH is a casual format that meant to be cheap. However, because of the recent hype, EDH staples starts to become more and more expensive. However, Wizards of the Coasts is attempting to allow newer players to have access to the older cards, what is their agenda you may ask, I have to say it is a topic for another time.


Yes, it is a worth to buy it. Thanks to Entomb.

The price of this deck is almost the price of a single card Entomb.

If you are playing mono black, you get to use Entomb, plus 8 other efficient black cards for EDH.

However, if you have most of the cards but lack 1 or 2, I strongly recommend that you buy just the Singles off from this set. It is only recommend to buy the whole deck if you lack of a lot of the cards it provide.

So, yes, if you are buying for Graveborn for EDH reanimation, it is cost effective, I highly recommend it. It is hard to swallow that there are trash cards in the deck.

But some of the cards are still efficient for Legacy. Do check out this guy legacy blog, he categorize the cards for different decks that are good for Legacy.


Yours Humility Manferd

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