Zombie Aristocrats

Posted in Feature on April 9, 2012

By Gavin Verhey

When Gavin Verhey was eleven, he dreamt of a job making Magic cards—and now as a Magic designer, he's living his dream! Gavin has been writing about Magic since 2005.

Blue-Black Zombies have been a huge part of Standard recently, but StarCityGames.com Open Series competitor Joshua Gaxiola recently took a different approach to the shambling soldiers. Opting for red instead of blue, he catapulted himself into the Top 16 of the Salt Lake City Open on the back of burn spells and Falkenrath Aristocrat.

While the blue version of the deck offers Diregraf Captain, Phantasmal Image, and light countermagic, Gaxiola sets all those aside. This version of the deck makes up for Diregraf Captain using Cemetery Reaper, filling the crucial lord hole. Red aggressive cards like Brimstone Volley can finish an opponent off with ease, especially with so many death-happy Zombies and Mortarpod around.

But perhaps the red standout of this deck is Falkenrath Aristocrat! Although a swarm of flying Spirit tokens had been keeping the Aristocrat on the benches, Gaxiola finally found a place for the hasty flier. Serving in for 4 points out of nowhere can be devastating—and even more so when it's tricky for the opponent to remove!

If you're interested in a new take on the popular tribal Standard archetype, this deck is a great place to look. Could red be the new blue in Zombies? Give it a try and find out for yourself!

Joshua Gaxiola's Black-Red Zombies

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