No Goblins Allowed

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Author:  The Secret of TIMH [ Sun Sep 22, 2019 2:17 am ]
Post subject:  Reanimator

Haven’t done a reanimator deck since Kaladesh, and got an itch to try it out (playing several decks with Pieces of the Puzzle, which I think is perfect for reanimator, letting you dump creatures and select reanimator spells or sweepers).

I looked at some lists online. Didn't see any from the last two seasons in Duels. Kinda odd since the last set gave us big Lilly... anyways, riffed off an older Sultai list from LVD and have been having fun with it. What I like is I can technically cast all creatures except Omnath from hand if it comes to it. No other creatures stranded if you can’t discard. Lotta ways to fill the yard: Pieces, Giza and Geralf (who can also let you pull Amalgams out of the yard), big Lilly - which I didn’t see in lists I viewed - plus some of the common ways of drawing n discarding.

Here’s where I’m at:

2 x Sinister Concoction
2 x Fatal Push
1 x Jace, Vyrn’s Prodigy
2 x Prized Amalgam
2 x Oath of Jace
1 x Catalog
4 x Pieces of the Puzzle
1 x Gisa and Geralf
2 x Languish
2 x Yahenni’s Expertise
3 x Necromantic Summons
3 x Rise from the Grave
1 x Lilliana, Death’s Majesty
1 x Noxious Gearhulk
1 x Greenwarden of Murasa
1 x Sire of Stagnation
1 x Ever After
2 x Gaea’s Revenge
2 x Plated Crusher
1 x Omnath, Locus of Rage
1 x Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger

5 x Island
6 x Swamp
1 x Forest
2 x Sunken Hallow
2 x Woodland Cemetery
2 x Drowned Catacomb
2 x Hinterland Harbor
4 x Evolving Wilds

A couple other mentions - Lilliana is a house here. Fills all functions the deck needs, and because Rise and Ever After make reanimated targets Zombies, her ultimate keeps them on board after sweeping. Sire’s probably a fringe choice for reanimator decks, but if you can reanimate him T5 on the play his triggered ability does amazing work. Just love the card draw he can give. Also, I tested Kozilek, but dropped him for a second Crusher after some games. Just hated having him stuck in hand when I didn’t get discard spells and other options I was using seemed to offer more.

I was torn between Sultai and Grixis for reanimator. Would be nice to have some of the cheap discard sources and some extra sweepers from red, but for my first stab at it I went Sultai for the ability to hard cast virtually everything if needed. If anyone has a Grixis list to share I’d love to see it

Author:  The Secret of TIMH [ Wed Oct 02, 2019 1:24 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Reanimator

That version had some things I liked about it, but wanted more to do before T3. Also flops if you can’t get to 5 mana in a timely manner. I liked pieces of the puzzle for finding reanimating spells and sweepers while chancing creature dumps to the yard, but it sucked to self mill lands I needed - and the enchantments + lili can’t be pulled with it. Tried a grixis version and it feels stronger in early testing. Pros: more ways to cycle out cards (fatties) from hand, more plays before T3, extra sweepers. Cons: lot more cards can’t be hard cast, but in early testing the extra discard effects have handled that issue well.

Grixis Reanimator:
1x Sinister Concoction (wanted 4x 1 mana removal spells and I can only run 3 axes. Only spell other than lili that Pieces can’t grab)
3x Lightening Axe
1x Jace, Vyrn’s Prodigy (with Pieces following T3 you flip him after untapping. Reunion gets him there in a hurry too. Essential recursion for sweepers and reanimator spells. Does everything you want in this strategy)
4x Cathartic Reunion (helpful T2 play to dump fatties and get lands you need to reanimate on curve)
2x Prized Amalgam (free creature when reanimating another target, acceptable T3 hard cast in a pinch to run blocking duty while you work towards reanimation mana)
4x Pieces of the Puzzle (mill past fatties while picking up reanimation spells and removal. Only fail hits are lands, lili, and the single Concoction)
2x Radiant Flames (Sultai version hurts for this vs aggro matchups)
2x Languish
1x Yahenni’s Expertise (like free casting Pieces, could be 2 copies but felt spot was better served elsewhere with Radiant Flames picking up slack)
3x Necromantic Summons (blood for bones this isn’t, but best Duels has. Easy to turn on spell mastery clause in this build)
2x Rise from the Grave (cut a copy in this version for a sweeper. Like keeping a copy of Ever After instead of 3 RftG).
1x Liliana, Death’s Majesty (like baby Jace she does everything you want in a reanimator deck)
1x Noxious Gearhulk (able to hardcast if necessary, nice removal on a stick plus life gain to recover from slower starts)
1x Greenwarden of Murasa (played around with a few options in this slot, but this won out for utility on getting back milled or killed Lilis, or whatever else you need in a pinch. I never use his death trigger unless it’s saving me from lethal situation cause you get the trigger again when reanimating him again)
1x Sire of Stagnation (some may want a different fatty here, but if you reanimate him T5 on the play, you put opp in a real pickle without unconditional removal in hand. Holds fort blocking while making land drops opps pain and your pleasure. I love the big butt and the card draw. Plus can be hard cast in a pinch)
1x Ever After
2x Gaea’s Revenge (effectively hexproof hasty reanimation target. Went for even split on this and the other hexproof green fatty. Nice lili target after a sweeper makes an empty battlefield)
2x Plated Crusher (trample, hexproof)
1x Omnath, Locus of Rage
1x Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger
3 x Island
4 x Swamp
3 x Mountain
2 x Smoldering Marsh
2 x Sunken Hallow
2 x Drowned Catacomb
2 x Sulfur Falls
2 x Dragonskull Summit
4 x Evolving Wilds

I miss Gisa and Geralf in this version - self mill was useful, it could trade with most threats opp would cast before T5, and casting Amalgams from graveyard was relevant on occasion. But I couldn’t figure out a good cut to fit it in this one...

Author:  The Secret of TIMH [ Thu Oct 03, 2019 1:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Reanimator

Grixis version is waaaaay better. Faster and more consistent with the reunions as a T2 play and the extra (flexible) 3 mana sweepers. Only game I lost not due to screw or flood was vs a bant mill deck with nut draw (don’t know how the deck survives/wins without T3 tutelage) that milled all my lands stranding me at 4 mana while I was helping them mill with my strategy. Deleted the Sultai version.

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