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Evelyn, the Covetous Art by Marta Nael

Standard 2023 Grixis Vampires Deck Guide – Rotation Proof Decks

Need something new to play, but don't want to spend Wildcards on a deck that won't be legal in a few months? DoggertQBones is back with another rotation proof deck as he goes over Grixis Vampires and why it's his favorite midrange deck from this year!

Hello everyone! Once again I’m coming back with a deck that you can use now, or after the Standard rotation in September! If you’re unfamiliar with this series, you can check out the link below for the other decks I’ve done so far!

With a full Standard rotation coming soon on September 1, 2022 (MTG Arena release date) with Dominaria United, understanding what’s going to be viable at the start of the format is going to be invaluable in navigating a brand new format. To that end, I’m going to be scouring the available decks in Standard, see what decks are likely to be strong even without the new set, and better yet, you can build and play them right now for a strong deck that won’t lose any new cards!

To accomplish this, the best way is to find strategies that are relatively contained within a set, have powerful synergies, and are strong enough to likely hold up to the test of time. To that end, if we’re going to talk decks, we may as well hit the best of the best going into the new format. Today I’m covering what is one of my favorite midrange decks of all time, Grixis Vampires!

Let’s take a look at the deck.

2023 Grixis Vampires
by DoggertQBones
Buy on TCGplayer $500.04
Standard
Midrange
best of 1
11 mythic
28 rare
12 uncommon
9 common
0
1
2
3
4
5
6+
Planeswalkers (5)
4
Kaito Shizuki
$37.96
Instants (8)
4
Voltage Surge
$1.00
4
Infernal Grasp
$5.16
Sorceries (1)
1
Soul Transfer
$0.35
Enchantments (7)
Lands (25)
1
Island
$0.25
2
Mountain
$0.50
2
Swamp
$0.50
4
Shipwreck Marsh
$21.96
4
Haunted Ridge
$71.96
1
Voldaren Estate
$0.25
60 Cards
$657.72

Deck Breakdown

Unlike most of the 2023 decks I’ve done so far, this is the first one without proactive one drops! Since the only one we may be interested in is Voldaren Epicure, we just go up the curve and start at 2 mana. Half of it is lack of good one drops, but the more important half is that a lot of our lands are going to enter tapped early so relying on casting a one drop on curve would be pretty ambitious.

While it is only a one of in the deck, Tenacious Underdog has been a frequent flier in these 2023 lists. Not only is it a powerful aggressive creature, it’s also a nice recursive value engine that you can use for damage and card draw later in the game.

If you want more value from your interaction, Bloodthirsty Adversary is your go to. Adversary is great as you can use it to apply pressure early, then if you have 5+ mana, you can “kick” it to rebuy one of your many removal spells!

For the final two drop, we have what may be the best two drop in Standard 2023. Bloodtithe Harvester does everything where it attacks well, defends well, and can be used as removal for most early creatures in case you need. The versatility of this card is ridiculous and it’s a Vampires on top of it!

Moving up to the heart of the deck, we have the three drops.

First off we have one of the best planeswalkers in awhile, Kaito Shizuki is just value on a stick. The plus ability lets you filter or simply draw a card, it creates an unblockable body, a near game winning ultimate, and it even protects itself for a turn to help you get multiple triggers off of it!

My favorite card in the deck, Corpse Appraiser was a card I very much overlooked initially. While it is a bit innocuous, a 3 mana 3/3 that digs 3 cards deep is really powerful. It’s a relevant body that will always demand an answer, this will almost always replace itself, and it can act as incidental graveyard hate against cards like the aforementioned Tenacious Underdog.

Then to the surprise of nobody, since we’re playing Red, we have to play Fable of the Mirror-Breaker. This card is just insanely value packed, but it also works extremely well in this deck as we have multiple cheap creatures with high impact ETBs to abuse with the back half of Fable!

Now we reach the top end of the deck.

For another lone one of, we have Sorin the Mirthless. While it’s here mostly because it’s a good card, we have the tiny added bonus that Sorin creates Vampires as well so that’s pretty neat!

Now for the whole reason we play Vampires, Evelyn, the Covetous is an insane amount of value. Just on entry you get two cards to potentially play, then with each subsequent Vampire you get two more cards to play. If you don’t kill Evelyn quickly, it’s extremely easy to run away with the game.

The glue that keeps this deck together, our removal suite is easily the best out of the prospective new decks in Standard.

For the four ofs of removal, we have Voltage Surge and Infernal Grasp. Voltage Surge is amazing as it kills pretty much every early creature and then can easily kill larger creatures by sacrificing an errant artifact. If you need to kill absolutely anything, Infernal Grasp will do that for you for the small price of two mana and life.

The final one of in the deck, Soul Transfer is relatively clunky interaction, but since you’re most likely to have it late in the game, you can get both modes when you have an Artifact and Enchantment on board which is pretty easy to accomplish here.

Finally, we come to what is probably the best card in the new prospective Standard, The Meathook Massacre is just disgustingly powerful. Whether you need to deal damage to the opponent, gain life, wipe the board, need a one sided wrath, Meathook can do any of it.

Overall what makes this deck so impressive is the consistency it has each game. When every card is a powerful midrange threat or great interaction, it’s so easy to always have great hands, great draws, and great plays.

Tips and Tricks

Bloodthirsty Adversary Art by Heonhwa Choe
Bloodthirsty Adversary Art by Heonhwa Choe
  • Unless you really need to defend Kaito Shizuki or desperately need the creature, I generally always use the plus ability.
  • Remember that although you’re generally blitzing Tenacious Underdog from the graveyard, you can do it from your hand as well if you need to. Furthermore, you can Blitz it main phase 2 for the card draw if you really need it.
  • Try to save Bloodthirsty Adversary until you can kick it. A 2 mana 2/2 Haste isn’t that powerful, but a 5 mana 3/3 that’s a functional Flametongue Kavu is!
  • It’s easy to forget, but Bloodtithe Harvester can only use it’s ability as a sorcery.
  • It’s always tempting to flash in Evelyn, the Covetous on the opponent’s turn, but playing it on your turn to try and hit a land is super reasonable.
  • While you can only cast one spell per turn from Evelyn, the Covetous‘s ability, you can cast them on either turn so time your spells appropriately.
  • Try to save your Blood tokens when possible to make Voltage Surge a 1 mana deal 4 as often as possible. Treasure tokens you shouldn’t save as often.

Thank you for reading, and for the current Standard iteration of the deck, check it out here:

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DoggertQBones
DoggertQBones

Robert "DoggertQBones" Lee is the content manager of MTGAZone and a high ranked Arena player. He has one GP Top 8 and pioneered popular archetypes like UB 8 Shark, UB Yorion, and GW Company in Historic. Beyond Magic, his passions are writing and coaching! Join our community on
Twitch and Discord.

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