black wizard casting a spell, representing a mono black tutor

71 Best Black Tutor Cards in MTG Magic: the Gathering

Tutors are some of the best cards in Magic: the Gathering and the black side of the color wheel boasts the first tutors and offers hands down the best tutors in the game.

It’s time to take a stroll through the bog, wake up the zombies in the coffers, perform a little Dark Ritual, and drain the life out of our opponents, using the best black tutor cards in MTG.

a vampire tutoring younger vampires regarding a large book

Instead of relying on that perfect draw from the top of your deck, tutors allow you to trade that card in your hand for the opportunity to search your library and pull another card, usually into your hand, but sometimes to the top of your library. 

Other colors generally put restrictions on the specific card type you can tutor for, such as blue tutors looking for instants and artifacts, and white looking for artifacts and enchantments, but not black.

The original tutor card, reaching all the way to magic’s first Alpha and Beta sets, Demonic Tutor, is one black and one colorless mana for any card you wish from your library to your hand. Literally trading it for any card you want at the time you cast it, ready to use, in your hand. It doesn’t get any better than that! Or does it…

black wizard in a summoning circle casting a spell

Black has a whole arsenal of tutors to choose from and all of them will get you the card you need at that time to manipulate and even win the game.

Black boasts a 1 mana tutor in Vampiric Tutor, many tribal tutors, and Diabolic Tutor that remained standard legal for several years, being reprinted in core sets. These all still have a place in formats like Modern or in your commander deck. And there are more.

If you need a blue tutorgreen tutorred tutor, or white tutor, we’ve got you covered there too! Or maybe you need a colorless tutor for any color combination.

But, no need to keep you waiting. Let’s take a look at how to get that chosen card from your mono-black library.

Top 10 Best Black Tutor Cards in MTG

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Let’s start with the top 10 black tutor cards. This is a little objective and there are certainly others worthy of top 10 consideration, but your black deck may improve by including any of these black tutors legal for the format:

#1 Demonic Tutor

Demonic Tutor is widely considered to be one of the best tutor cards in the game. For just two mana, you can search your library for any card and put it into your hand. It’s a staple in many black decks where it’s legal such as commander, or for casual play.

mtg demonic tutor black tutor card

#2 Vampiric Tutor

Vampiric Tutor is another powerful black tutor card. It allows you to search your library for any card and put it on top of your library. The downside is that you lose 2 life in the process. However, this can be a small price to pay for the ability to get the exact card you need, and Vampiric is an instant speed tutor.

MTG Vampiric Tutor card

#3 Imperial Seal

Imperial Seal is a rare and expensive card, but it’s also incredibly powerful. It’s similar to Vampiric Tutor in that it allows you to search your library for any card and put it on top of your library, and you lose 2 life. The main difference is this tutor works at sorcery speed, and thus must be played during your main phase on your turn.

MTG Imperial Seal card

#4 Diabolic Tutor

Diabolic Tutor is a budget option for those who don’t want to shell out so much cash for the more expensive tutor cards. It’s a bit slower than the others, costing four mana, but it still allows you to search your library for any card and put it into your hand.

MTG Diabolic Tutor card

#5 Grim Tutor

Grim Tutor is a recent addition to Magic: The Gathering and has quickly become a popular choice for black decks. It’s kind of a mix of Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor. It allows you to search for any card and put it directly into your hand, but forces you to lose 3 life in the process.

MTG Grim Tutor card

#6 Wishclaw Talisman

Wishclaw Talisman is a unique tutor card that allows you to search your library for any card and put it into your hand. The downside is that you then have to give the talisman to an opponent, who can use it to search their own library once it’s untapped. However, if you’re careful about when you use it, or have “allies” to pass it to, it can be a powerful tool.

MTG Wishclaw Talisman card

#7 Diabolic Intent

Diabolic Intent is a powerful tutor card that allows you to sacrifice a creature to search your library for any card and put it into your hand. A sac outlet and find the card you need at the same time, a black deck’s dream. The only drawback is that it’s a sorcery, and not an instant.

MTG Diabolic Intent card

#8 Scheming Symmetry

Scheming Symmetry is another unique tutor card that allows you to choose 2 players to search their library for any card and put it on top. Can help to form powerful alliances in a format like commander, or assist your team in 2 headed giant, or emperor team games.

MTG Scheming Symmetry card

#9 Unmarked Grave

Unmarked Grave is a different kind of tutor card for reanimation and recursion based decks. It allows you to search your library for a nonlegendary card and put it into your graveyard. This can be an easy way to get powerful creatures or spells into your graveyard for later use. This is higher up on the list than say Entomb because of the ability to get spells other than creatures.

MTG Unmarked Grave card

#10 Cruel Tutor

Cruel Tutor is a less powerful variant of Vampiric Tutor. This card allows you to search your library for any card and put it on top of your deck. You also pay 2 more mana than Vampiric Tutor, and the same 2 life for this privilege. This one also works at sorcery speed.

MTG Cruel Tutor card

Understanding Tutor Cards in Magic: The Gathering 

Tutor cards are an essential part of Magic: The Gathering gameplay, especially in black. They allow us to search our deck for specific cards, which can be a game-changer.

They bring consistency and balance to combo and control decks which have to have certain cards at certain times.

Black, one of the five colors in Magic: The Gathering, is known for its ability to manipulate life totals, draw power from death, and destroy creatures.

Old vampire tutoring younger vampires

Black tutor cards allow us to search our deck, usually for any card we wish, sometimes with a cost such as a few life, as black is often known to do.

Trading a card and maybe a couple life for the perfect card at a crucial moment is one of the things black does best, and can make playing black an extremely fun experience.

Key Features of Black Tutor Cards

While several black tutors allow you to pick any card you wish, others do have restrictions on what you can grab, or where you put it. These are some key features of black tutor cards that make them stand out from other colors and tutors:

Old wizard in black robes casting a spell in a summoning circle
  • Search your library for any card: Several of the best black tutors allow you to search your library for any card of your choice, giving you access to powerful spells and creatures that can turn the tide of battle in the moment.
  • Instant speed: Many black tutor cards can be played at instant speed, allowing you to search for a card in response to an opponent’s move, or at an opponent’s end step, allowing you to counter their strategy at just the right instant.
  • Sorcery speed: Some black tutor cards can only be played at sorcery speed, meaning you can only use them during your main phase. While this can limit your options somewhat, it’s still a powerful tool for finding the cards you need.
  • Low mana cost: Most black tutor cards have a relatively low mana cost, making them easy to play even in the early game. This can give you a significant advantage over your opponent by allowing you to set up your strategy quickly.
  • Access to your graveyard: Many black tutor cards allow you to search your graveyard for cards as well as your library, giving you even more options for finding the cards you need. Others allow you to put the card(s) you searched for into your graveyard, enabling recursion and reanimator strategies.
  • Creature and tribal search: Some black tutor cards specifically allow you to search for creatures, or creatures from specific tribes such as zombie cards, making them an excellent choice for decks that rely heavily on creature-based strategies.

Additional Mono Black Tutors in MTG

Beyond the top 10 black has a ton of additional tutor options that may make sense for different situations. Tutors for land, tutors for tribal cards, tutors built into enchantments and planeswalkers. Bonus points if you remember the old Mercenary tutors! In no particular order:

Old bald vampire tutoring younger vampires

Basic Black Tutor Cards in MTG

Beseech the Queen: This card allows you to search your library for a card with converted mana cost less than or equal to the number of lands you control and put it into your hand. It can also be played with 3 black mana, or a combination of black and colorless (2 colorless for each non-black paid)

Tainted Pact: A tutor card that allows you to exile cards from your library until you find the card you need. The downside is that if you exile two cards with the same name, you have to stop exiling and don’t get a card.

Demonic Consultation: A risky but powerful tutor card. It allows you to exile cards from your library until you find the card you need.

Dark Petition: This card has a unique mechanic where it allows you to add three black mana to your mana pool, and then search your library for a card and put it into your hand. If you have spell mastery (meaning you have two or more instant and/or sorcery cards in your graveyard), this tutor essentially only costs 2 black mana.

Rune-Scarred Demon: This creature has a tutor effect as an enter-the-battlefield trigger, allowing you to search your library for any card and put it into your hand.

Diabolic Revelation: This card scales with your mana, allowing you to search for multiple cards, perfect for late-game dominance.

Spoils of the Vault: A high-risk, high-reward tutor that tests your knowledge of your deck’s contents and can turn the tide when played right.

Secret Salvage: Unearths multiple copies of a single card from your deck, providing a unique form of card advantage. Belongs in 60 card formats, won’t help much in commander.

Mausoleum Secrets: Capitalizes on the undergrowth mechanic, turning creature deaths into a powerful tutoring tool.

Demonic Collusion: Its buyback ability allows repeated use, making it a consistent threat in longer games.

Razaketh, the Foulblooded: A powerful demon offering repeatable tutoring at the cost of creature sacrifices and 2 life each, enabling combo plays.​

Increasing Ambition: Offers both immediate and long-term tutoring, with a flashback feature that ensures card advantage, tutoring for 2 cards.

Rhystic Tutor: A conditional tutor that challenges your opponent’s resources, potentially offering a cheap search option. Its sorcery speed holds this one back from being truly great.

The Cruelty of Gix: This saga tutors at the second chapter, Read Ahead offers the ability to start there.

Illicit Shipment: A 5 mana tutor with the ability to copy itself for a creature sacrifice.

Coveted Prize: Costs less with party members and can lead to a free spell cast, making it a rewarding choice in the right deck.

Sidisi, Undead Vizier: A tutor on a creature that also acts as a sacrifice outlet, providing both board presence and deck manipulation.

Razaketh’s Rite: A flexible card with cycling, allowing you to either tutor or draw a card depending on the situation.

Profane Tutor: Suspends for two turns, offering a delayed but cost-effective search.

Beseech the Mirror: A tutor that can cast the card immediately with its Bargain ability.

Liliana Vess: A planeswalker whose +1 ability disrupts opponents, while her -2 offers reliable tutoring, and her ultimate may be a win condition in reanimation decks.

Doomsday: A high-stakes tutor that can set up game-winning combinations from your library and graveyard, but leaves you vulnerable and starts a clock on the end of the game.

Infernal Tutor: A powerful tool when Hellbent, fetching any card in your deck. When not Hellbent it can fetch a copy of any card in your hand you wish to reveal.

Insidious Dreams: Discard cards to tutor for the same number, a strategic trade-off that can set up game-winning draws.

Night Dealings: Accumulates theft counters to tutor, a slow but steady build-up to critical card access.

Divining Witch: A unique combination of tutoring and randomization, ideal for decks that can manage the risk.

Bringer of the Black Dawn: Technically this one has a 5 color identity, but it’s casting cost is mono black with a 5 color alternate cost. A formidable creature that offers a consistent, albeit life-costly, tutoring ability that you can choose to use each upkeep.

Tribal Black Tutor Cards in MTG

Blightspeaker: A rebel tutor that also provides a slow but steady life-draining ability.

Corpse Harvester: Sac a creature for a zombie tutor and a swamp card, supporting both zombie themes and mana consistency.

Boggart Harbinger: Goblin tutor card, a cornerstone in goblin decks for finding key tribal pieces.

Forerunner of the Coalition: A pirate tutor that also chips away at opponents’ life totals when pirates enter the battlefield.

Iname, Death Aspect: A unique tutor that can potentially fill your graveyard with Spirits, setting up massive tribal synergies.

Ratcatcher: A relentless rodent tutor, it steadily thickens your ranks with more Rats each turn.

Shadowborn Apostle: A unique creature that can be a game-changer in decks designed around it, enabling powerful demon summons.

Blood Speaker: A demon-centric tutor that can recur itself, making it a persistent threat in demon-focused decks.

Cateran Persuader: Part of the Cateran cycle, this creature subtly tutors for more Mercenary cards.

Cateran Brute: Another Cateran that tutors for its kin, maintaining the Mercenary chain.

Rathi Intimidator: Focuses on tutoring low cost Mercenaries, a specific role in older black strategies.

Cateran Kidnappers: Part of the Cateran cycle, this creature fetches 3 mana value and lower mercenaries, expanding your battlefield options.

Rathi Assassin: Specializes in removing tapped creatures and tutors for Mercenaries, a dual-threat card.

Rathi Fiend: This card disrupts opponents by forcing discards and continues the Mercenary tutoring theme.

Cateran Enforcer: A higher-tier Mercenary tutor, it fetches medium costly but potentially game-changing creatures.

Cateran Slaver: Another of the Cateran chain, it tutors for any Mercenary 5 mana cost or less, offering wide-ranging strategic choices.

Cateran Overlord: A high-cost, high-reward Mercenary tutor that dominates the battlefield with its presence.

Cateran Summons: A spell that continues the Mercenary chain, helping maintain momentum in Mercenary-focused decks.

Graveyard Interaction Black Tutor Cards in MTG

Buried Alive: Specializes in filling your graveyard with creatures, setting up numerous reanimation strategies.

Entomb: An efficient one-mana tutor that puts any card directly into your graveyard, perfect for combo setups.

Final Parting: An intriguing tutor, allowing you to choose two cards—one for your hand and one for the graveyard, setting up your hand and potential graveyard strategies.

Burning-Rune Demon: A flying threat that also provides an opponent’s choice tutor, balancing board presence with strategic card selection.

Vile Entomber: A creature that tutors a card to your graveyard, useful for setting up reanimation and recursion plays since it can grab any card.

Corpse Connoisseur: A creature that tutors another creature straight to the graveyard, perfect for reanimation tactics. It also has Unearth offering recursion for the card itself.

Black Transmute and Transfigure Cards in MTG

Dimir Machinations: Versatile with its transmute ability, it can fetch any card with a converted mana cost of 3, offering strategic deck thinning, or the ability to set up your opponent’s next few draws.

Brainspoil: Doubles as removal and a tutor through transmute, adding flexibility to your deck.

Fleshwrither: Transfigures itself into any creature with a converted mana cost of 4. The Transfigure ability tutors for only creatures.

Shred Memory: Remove 4 cards in a graveyard from the game, or Transmute for another 2 mana cost card from your library.

Dimir House Guard: Offers both a sacrifice outlet and a transmute tutor, a dual-purpose tool in any black deck.

Netherborn Phalanx: Transmute for a 6 mana cost card, or a come into play ability where each opponent loses a life for each creature they control.

Black Land Tutor Cards in MTG

Liliana of the Dark Realms: Focuses on ramping up your mana by tutoring Swamps, unique for a black planeswalker. Also has a built in pump, creature removal, and her ultimate quadruples your swamp mana.

Twisted Abomination: Provides swamp retrieval and a solid beater, a versatile card in mono-black decks but can also fix other land situations since it searches for a swamp card, and not a basic swamp.

Absorb Vis: A basic mana-fixing tutor that also drains life from opponents, balancing resource acquisition with aggression.

Black Tutors That Affect Your Opponents

Life’s Finale: Destroys all creatures and lets you meddle with your opponent’s library, a potent combination.

Praetor’s Grasp: A unique form of tutoring that disrupts your opponent’s plans by snatching a card directly from their library.

Opposition Agent: Not only tutors but also hijacks your opponents’ searches, a truly disruptive force in any match.

Maralen of the Mornsong: Forces all players into a tutoring lock, and shuts down all card draw. A high-risk but potentially rewarding strategy.

Black has some of the best tutor cards in Magic: The Gathering. Whether you’re looking for a budget option or a powerful staple, there’s a black tutor card that’s right for your deck.

Frequently Asked Questions

An old wizard in black robes and hat with long white beard holding a pentacle standing in front of a summoning circle

What are the top black tutor cards in MTG?

The top black tutor cards in MTG are Demonic Tutor, Vampiric Tutor, and Diabolic Tutor. These cards are considered the best due to their ability to search for any card in your deck and put it into your hand. They are also relatively cheap to cast and have been staples in many MTG decks for years.

How do MTG tutor cards work?

In MTG tutor cards allow you to search your deck for a specific card and put it into your hand, your graveyard, or on top of your library. This can help you find the cards you need to win the game or to set up a powerful combo. Tutor cards can be used at any time during your turn, but they do require you to pay a cost to use them.

What is the difference between Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor?

Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor are both black tutor cards that allow you to search your deck for any card. The main differences between the two are that Demonic Tutor costs two mana to cast, while Vampiric Tutor costs only one, however, Vampiric Tutor requires you to pay two life in addition to its mana cost. Demonic Tutor puts the searched card into your hand, while Vampiric puts it on top of your library. Lastly, Vampiric is an instant, while Demonic is a sorcery, setting up different times that they can be played.

What is the best black tutor card in MTG?

The best black tutor card in MTG depends on your specific deck and playstyle. Demonic Tutor and Vampiric Tutor are often considered the best due to their versatility and low mana cost, but other cards like Diabolic Tutor and Grim Tutor can also be very powerful in certain situations.

An older male vampire tutoring two younger female vampires around a large open book

Pair some of these awesome black tutors with a new black commander from our 100 best black commanders list!

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All cards are copyright Wizards of the Coast and many included images and symbols are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast LLC (now a subsidiary of Hasbro.)

All cards are copyright Wizards of the Coast and many included images and symbols are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast LLC (now a subsidiary of Hasbro.)

Bryan - MCM
Author: Bryan - MCM

Magic player since Revised in 94. Still remember opening boosters of Revised, the Dark, and Arabian Nights as a kid. Watching it be a big deal (and then let down) when Fallen Empires dropped. Then Magic got it right again and really took off. While the current state of Wizards is debatable, I still enjoy playing with friends and my kids. I don't do tournaments much these days but I've played Draft, Sealed, Standard, Extended (not a thing anymore,) Pre-Release, Grand Prix, States Qualifiers, and Teams tournaments. Though I'm not a judge, I'm the one the friends turn to when there's a rules question, and if I don't know it, I find it. Please, ask me anything, comment on posts, and share Magic with your friends and family!

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