Necrotic Reanimator by dnsolver on MtGO

Creatures (7)
2 Griselbrand
3 Necrotic Ooze
1 Phyrexian Devourer
1 Triskelion

Non-Creature Spells (38)
4 Cabal Therapy
2 Collective Brutality
2 Exhume
4 Gitaxian Probe
4 Ponder
2 Reanimate
4 Brainstorm
4 Dark Ritual
4 Entomb
4 Shallow Grave
4 Lotus Petal

Lands (15)
2 Flooded Strand
1 Island
2 Marsh Flats
4 Polluted Delta
1 Scrubland
1 Swamp
1 Tundra
3 Underground Sea

Sideboard (15)
3 Echoing Truth
2 Flusterstorm
4 Monastery Mentor
2 Surgical Extraction
4 Swords to Plowshares

Summary

Reanimator decks in Legacy have been on the decline in recent years thanks in no small part to the rise of Deathrite Shaman and the printing of even more efficient graveyard hate. That being said, it showed up and did fairly well at the SCG Open in DC this past weekend, perhaps showing that the strategy has legs. The deck we’re featuring today is a new take on the classic archetype, adding a powerful combo finish involving an innocuous creature from Scars of Mirrodin.

Like all Reanimator decks, this deck’s primary aim is to get a big creature into the graveyard and cheat it into play through various reanimation spells. In this deck, Entomb is the main way of getting creatures into the graveyard, with Collective Brutality as a powerful way to use a big creature stuck in hand to disrupt the opponent or protect the combo while getting the desired creature into the graveyard. Exhume, Reanimate, and Shallow Grave are the reanimation spells here, with Exhume and Shallow Grave costing 1 more mana, but not costing any life, which is more detrimental to this version of Reanimator than most.

As for reanimation targets, Griselbrand is the obvious option, as it allows you to bury the opponent in card advantage and reanimate more creatures down the line, all while providing a very hard to kill creature for many decks in the format. The real draw to this version of the deck, however, is Necrotic Ooze. The 4 mana creature allows this deck to have a combo finish when combined with Phyrexian Devourer and Triskelion. Once both copies of Griselbrand are no longer in the deck and Devourer and Triskelion are in the graveyard with an Ooze in play, you can exile cards one by one over and over again, removing counters to deal damage, until the opponent is killed. Additionally, getting an Ooze in play with a Griselbrand in the yard is powerful enough to win many games.

This deck lies somewhere between the traditional U/B versions of this deck and the all out non-blue versions. It plays Gitaxian Probe, Ponder, and Brainstorm to smooth draws in blue, while it plays Dark Ritual to enable even faster combos. However, with no counter spells in the mainboard, this deck leans heavily on Cabal Therapy, which has proven itself as one of the most impactful discard spells in the format over the years, especially in combination with the recently Modern banned Gitaxian Probe.

Here are the changes I would make going forward:

Mainboard

-1 Exhume

+1 Collective Brutality

Sideboard

No changes.

This is day 303 of Spellsnare.com’s 2017 Deck of the Day column, where each day we’ll feature a different Standard, Modern, or Legacy deck that caught our eye. You can read day 302 here, where we featured a unique Standard deck that leans heavily on the most under-used mechanic from Kaladesh block!

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