Gisa’s Favorite Shovel
Gisa’s Favorite Shovel

Gisa’s Favorite Shovel – Wilds of Eldraine

Date Reviewed:  September 15, 2023

Constructed: 1.75
Casual: 4.00
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 3.50
Commander [EDH]: 4.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below: 

 James H. 


As one of the reskins from a Secret Lair product, this isn’t getting a Limited score, and its legality in Legacy and Vintage will appear in its Constructed score.

One of the most controversial products ever released was the first mechanically unique Secret Lair, themed around The Walking Dead. Back when it was initially released, there were no plans to release in-universe versions of its cards, even as other mechanically unique Secret Lairs got that treatment…though we would get them three years later. In particular, today’s card is a reflavored version of Lucille, which is somehow better than the original because Gisa is a delight and the idea she has a favorite shovel tickles me.

Anyway, Gisa’s Favorite Shovel is a powerful effect stuck to a clunky equipment. In general, I would prefer a higher casting cost and lower equip cost, because it’s easier to manage a one-time cost than one you’d pay more often. That said, this effect is extremely nice: it’s removal, evasion, and able to raise an army all in one swing, and once this is up and running, you’ll hit hard. The Zombies created by this having a unique name can be handy in a pinch, so there’s also that.

Unfortunately, it costs six mana (split up over two installments) to get this online, and it’s not even colorless, which is an issue. And while you can cheat on its costs, there are better cards to cheat on both for cheating equip costs and casting costs. It’s powerful, though, and Commander decks can make great use of this in a lot of different scenarios, but Lucille never saw Constructed play, and I doubt it changes with wider availability.

Constructed: 1.75 (way too pricey for what it does, and needs creatures on board to really shine)
Casual: 4.5
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 3.5
Commander [EDH]: 4 (not in the primary Equipment color, but this can hit hard in any deck with its toes in black)


I have to give Wizards of the Coast credit: I didn’t think you could readily transplant a weapon from the Walking Dead Secret Lair into Innistrad. But they were actually slightly clever with this, and referring to the beloved Gisa might make people who objected to the original feel a little better.

The artifact itself actually plays pretty well. If it were in a draftable set, six mana for +2/+0 and menace alone would be playable in draft – not stellar, but usable. The extra mana probably accounts for the attack trigger, which is again not stellar in most settings: the opponent has a lot of control over it and there are many faster ways to get zombie tokens. But it can help you get just a little extra advantage out of certain situations, and might be fun in your “All Gisa’s Stuff” theme deck.

Constructed: 1.5
Casual: 4
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 3
Commander [EDH]: 3

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