JAELOVE's Smooth Journey
Article 10: Deconstructing the Chaos Deck Part Two:
The Gravekeeper's Response
The second article in my involving series regarding Chaos, the archetype we love to hate, involves a long overlooked type of deck: The Gravekeeper build. Gravekeepers, introduced in Pharaonic Guardian, are a powerful decktype that naturally, and perfectly, counters Chaos decks by restricting the opponent's graveyard.
PURPOSES OF A GRAVEKEEPER DECK:
The purpose of the Gravekeeper deck is to get out the most versatile field spell card outside of Sanctuary of the Sky. Necrovalley is the name, and its claim to fame in the game arises from two separate, powerful effects. The first effect is that it negates ALL things having to do with graveyards. The second effect gives a hefty 500 point attack/def bonus to your gravekeeper cards, turning them all into powerful berserk gorilla-sized beasts.
Monster Reborn, Premature Burial, Call of the Haunted, Magician of Faith, Fiber Jar, Chaos Emperor Dragon, Black Luster Soldier. Instantly, 7 of the strongest weapons in the Chaos deck's arsenal are removed from the equation. Factor in the tremendous overflow damage that Gravekeeper's Assailants and Spear Soldiers have, at 2000 attack a pop, and the swarming nature of the Gravekeeper's Spy, and you end up wondering how this deck did not see any play at Chaos-dominated Nationals.
The protection of Necrovalley becomes key in this type of deck. It is the centerpiece of the deck; without it, the Gravekeepers simply become ordinary 1500 attack monsters with no distinct purpose. You'll also need a steady stream of cards to protect your gravekeepers.
Here is a list of the monsters that are featured in a Necrovalley deck.
Gravekeeper’s Chief ---Super Rare
Dark/Spellcaster/Effect/5/ATK 1900/DEF 1200
You can have only 1 face-up “Gravekeeper’s Chief” on your side of the field at any time. As long as this card remains face-up on the field, your Graveyard is not affected by “Necrovalley”. When you Tribute Summon this monster, you can Special Summon 1 monster that includes “Gravekeeper’s” in its card name from your Graveyard.
The chief of the gravekeepers, this card weighs in at a hefty 2400 attack. He contributes to the heavy swarm that gravekeepers possess by allowing you to bring out even more from the graveyard. He'll also let you slide by the effects of Necrovalley. Excellent.
PGD-062 Gravekeeper’s Spear Soldier
Dark/Spellcaster/Effect/4/ATK 1500/DEF 1000
When this card attacks with an ATK that is higher than the DEF of your opponent’s Defense Position monster, inflict the difference as Battle Damage to your opponent’s Life Points.
This is one of the stud mainstays of the Necrovalley deck. Simply put, with Necrovalley, you'll have a 2000 attack powerhouse of a monster that deals 1000+ trample damage per shot. Amazing.
PGD-067 Gravekeeper’s Assailant
Dark/Spellcaster/Effect/4/ATK 1500/DEF 1500
You can activate this card’s effect only when “Necrovalley” is active on the field. When this card attacks, you can change the battle position of 1 face-up monster on your opponent’s side of the field.
Unfortunately, this guy can only use his effect when Necrovalley is active. Of course, if he didn't have that restriction, he'd be a very, very broken card. Needless to say, you'll also be packing 3 of these guys.
PGD-059 Gravekeeper’s Spy
Dark/Spellcaster/Effect/4/ATK 1200/DEF 2000
FLIP: Select 1 monster that includes “Gravekeeper’s” in its card name with an ATK of 1500 or less from your Deck and Special Summon it in face-up Attack or Defense Position. The Deck is then shuffled.
This is the backbone of your Gravekeeper's defense; she'll provide a defensive wall and also allow you to swarm your opponent, overrunning them.
The rest of the Gravekeepers are highly inferior to the ones mentioned above. Of the remaining ones, Gravekeeper's Guard is the next best, but I wouldn't suggest running any of them, unless you're going for a pure Gravekeeper burn deck.
The spell/trap lineup is pretty standard, but you'll have to make a few omissions to make room for the Gravekeeper cards.
I feel 3 Necrovalley/2 Terraforming is an acceptable, reliable mixture of cards. With these in tow, you'll definitely be able to get that Necrovalley out there.
Rite of Spirit is another solid Gravekeeper-themed card you'll want to run in three's; it'll replace your Call of the Haunted and Premature Burial.
Keep most of the spell cards you normally use; if you're pressed for space, cut pre-negators, change of heart, snatch steal, mirage of nightmare, and other such cards. Consider cutting Heavy Storm for two Dust Tornados.
You'll need to run either Magic Drains, Judgement of Anubis's, or Magic Reflector to protect the Necrovalley.
Painful Choice is a must because of the 3 Rite of Spirits you have.
A Sample Gravekeeper's Deck: 40 Cards
2 Gravekeeper's Chief
3 Gravekeeper's Assailant
3 Gravekeeper's Spear Soldier
3 Gravekeeper's Spy
1 Witch of the Black Forest
1 Magical Scientist
1 Breaker the Mag. Warrior
1 Dark Hole
1 Pot of Greed
1 Graceful Charity
1 Monster Reborn
1 Change of Heart
1 Harpie's Feather Duster
3 Mystical Space Typhoon
1 Painful Choice
2 Magic Reflector
3 Rite of Spirit
1 Imperial Order
1 Ring of Destruction
1 Mirror Force
As always, e-mail me with questions, suggestions, and cards to review at firstname.lastname@example.org
A BAD System Score of the Week
PGD Super Rare: Necrovalley
Featured In: Gravekeepers Deck
Advantage F/H: Necrovalley single-handedly makes this deck run smoothly. Without it, all of your gravekeepers are 1200-1500 attack weaksticks. You can't limit your opponent's graveyard. With it, the deck transforms into a powerhouse. 9.5/10.
Best Draw for the Situation: Always a welcome sight in a Gravekeeper's deck. You just don't want to see two or three of them in hand at one time, or draw it when you're top-decking and don't have monsters. Take a few off for those drawbacks for 9/10.
Attributes/Effect: You can't have a Gravekeeper's deck without this card. It gets a perfect score for making a whole archetype effective. 10/10.
opponent has many spell/trap removers that can get rid
of it. You'll have some protection up there, but it's
bound to be removed a few times when it's up there.
That's why you'll run three copies of it. 7.5/10.
A BAD Score: 36/40 = 90/100
The Bottom Line: The score shows why you run 3 in a Gravekeepers deck.
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