Mechanical Color Pie 2021 Changes

Posted in Making Magic on October 18, 2021

By Mark Rosewater

Working in R&D since '95, Mark became Magic head designer in '03. His hobbies: spending time with family, writing about Magic in all mediums, and creating short bios.

Below is a detailed list of every change I made between my Mechanical Color Pie 2017 article and today's 2021 version. After each change, I will explain what changed and why in a blue box.

Before I start with all the details, I want to explain the five types of changes I made:

Change text: This means the text is different in some way between the old version and the new version. I show you the old text and then show you the next text. The old text has strikeouts to show what's been cut or changed, and the new text is in Green to help highlight what is new.

Change label: This means I'm changing the name of what I'm calling a section. I show the old label and then the new label. Because the mechanical color pie has an alphabetical portion, this means the section will most likely move.

Change status: This means that I've changed what colors are primary, secondary, and/or tertiary.

Remove a section: This means I'm removing something, sometimes a whole section, sometimes just a subsection.

Add a section: This means I'm adding something, sometimes a whole section, sometimes just a subsection. Brand-new sections unrelated to existing sections are added at the end.

Note for each section, I will list the type of change or changes and then show the old and new versions in bold. Below that will be an explanation of the reason for the change.

The Council of Colors did have a meeting to run over all the changes. The representative of each color gave a list of additions, subtractions, and individual changes they recommended, and the whole team talked them over.


CHANGE LABEL: "Abyss"

OLD:
"Abyss" (All players/opponents must sacrifice a creature each turn.)

NEW:
Creature sacrifice, forced, repeatable (All players/opponents must sacrifice a creature each turn.)

I used a lot of slang in the original mechanical color pie article, so I was looking for places where I could de-slang. Mostly, I removed slang which just referenced cards that haven't been printed in a long time. For example, The Abyss is a card from Legends, the third expansion which came out in 1994. It has never been reprinted in tabletop as it's on the Reserved List.

ADD NEW SECTION: Animating artifacts

Animating artifacts (Target/all non-creature artifact(s) you control becomes an artifact creature.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Green

Blue is the color most likely to turn a non-creature artifact into an artifact creature. Green is second most likely to do it.

Another goal of this change was to add abilities that had been left out previously, or ones that were new. In this case, animating artifacts goes all the back to Alpha. It was just left out of the original article. I decided to expand the sections on animating permanents. The 2017 version just listed animating lands.

ADD NEW SECTION: Animating enchantments

Animating enchantments (Target/all non-aura enchantment(s) you control becomes an enchantment creature.)

Primary: White
Secondary: Blue

White is the color than animates other enchantments. Blue has enchantments that under certain conditions can become animated.

Animating enchantments isn't quite as old as animating artifacts, but also has been with Magic for a long time. It's added for the 2021 version.

CHANGE TEXT: Animating lands

OLD:
Green, as the color connected most closely to lands and creatures, is the color most likely to turn lands into creatures—usually still keeping them lands. When we do this, we often grant the land haste to avoid having to worry if it was the one you played this turn (which would have summoning sickness). Note that's a special exception for land, as green does not often grant creatures haste. Red uses this ability a little playing into its one-shot damage cards that come through attacking. All the colors have dipped their toe into this area, but it's infrequent and usually only involves animating their own basic land type.

NEW:
Green, as the color connected most closely to lands and creatures, is the color most likely to turn lands into creatures—usually still keeping them lands. When we do this, we often grant the land haste to avoid having to worry if it was the one you played this turn (which would have summoning sickness). Red uses this ability a little playing into its one-shot damage cards that come through attacking. All the colors have dipped their toe into this area, but it's infrequent and usually only involves animating their own basic land type, and is most often done in cycles.

The Council of Colors had a big discussion of whether animating lands was tertiary in white, blue, and black, but between things like the Genju cycle from Betrayers of Kamigawa, the awaken mechanic in Battle for Zendikar, and the numerous lands affiliated with colors that could animate themselves (although I should stress lands are not colored), it felt like something we wanted to have access to, so I left them in as tertiary, but pointed out it's usually done through a larger set theme like a cycle than individual card designs.

CHANGE TEXT: Artifact destruction

OLD:
Red and green usually have one artifact destruction card in common, although green's is usually also a spell that destroy both artifacts and enchantments. (See enchantment destruction.) White's artifact destruction is usually at uncommon.

NEW:
Red and green usually have one artifact destruction card in common, although green's is usually also a spell that destroy both artifacts and enchantments. (See enchantment destruction.) White is starting to get more artifact destruction at common, usually also able to destroy enchantments.

This change is just signifying that we've raised the as-fan of white artifact destruction. We've decided that both white and green can have commons that destroy artifacts or enchantments. Green is just supposed to be a bit better at it.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Banisher Priest

OLD:
Primary: White

This is one of white's most efficient answers, especially in Limited. It is usually used on creatures but sometimes hits other permanents. The effect is always on a permanent, usually a creature or enchantment. We've used this effect in blue and green as an enters-the-battlefield trigger with the flavor that it's "eaten" the creature.

NEW:
Primary: White

This is one of white's most efficient answers, especially in Limited. It is usually used on creatures but sometimes hits other permanents. The effect is always on a permanent, usually a creature or enchantment.

This was one of the more controversial things in the original mechanical color pie article. I had wanted to let green have access to this ability (for example, I made a Big Bad Wolf card that originally used it Throne of Eldraine), so optimistically, I put it in the article. It turned out that it wasn't an overall popular idea and it was never added to green. Blue did have a card that did this (Colossal Whale), but we decided in the meeting that this just isn't something we want in blue. The end result is the ability is now solely in white.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Basic land counting

OLD:
Primary: Red
Secondary: Blue, black, and green
Tertiary: White

All colors have access to this, but we tend to skew toward black, red, and green.

NEW:
Primary: Red
Secondary: Black and green
Tertiary: White and blue

All colors have access to this, but red does it most followed by black and green.

This is one of those things that's just slowly shifted over time. I moved around the colors to better reflect where they stand in present day as opposed to historical representation.

REMOVE SECTION: Blocking extra creatures

Blocking extra creatures (This creature can block an additional N creatures each combat)

This ability used to be solely in white, but we added it to green because we felt green needed it for gameplay reasons. It's possible that as we do this more in green, we'll start doing it less in white.

This is an ability we've stopped using for various reasons, so I removed it from the article.

CHANGE LABEL & TEXT: "Bounce"

OLD:
"Bounce" (Return target creature/permanent to its owner's hand.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: White and green

Blue can bounce any type of permanent, although these days doesn't often bounce lands. It also will often bounce a creature via an enters-the-battlefield effect. (R&D refers to these as "Man-o'-Wars," based on the first card that did it.) White can only bounce its own permanents to protect them (and often to do cool combo-ish things). Green bounces creatures as a cost for playing bigger creatures, often as an upkeep cost.

NEW:
Return to hand (Return target creature/permanent to its owner's hand.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: White
Tertiary: Green

Blue can bounce any type of permanent, although these days doesn't often bounce lands. It also will often bounce a creature via an enters-the-battlefield effect. (R&D refers to these as "Man-o'-Wars," based on the first card that did it.) White can only bounce its own permanents to protect them (and often to do cool combo-ish things). Green sometimes bounces creatures as a cost for playing bigger creatures.

"Bounce" is another slang word I decided to swap because there were simple words to replace it. I also moved green from secondary to tertiary as it's not an ability we've been using in green much recently.

CHANGE LABEL, TEXT, & STATUS: "Bounce" to library

OLD:
"Bounce" to library (Put a creature/permanent on top of its owner's library or some number of cards down.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: White

Blue does this as a super unsummoning, while white tends to do it flavored as a delaying tactic.

NEW:
Return to library (Put a creature/permanent on top of its owner's library or some number of cards down.)

Primary: Blue

Blue does this as an upgraded version of returning to hand. Blue will sometimes put the card a few cards down into the library, and sometimes shuffles in into a small pile on top. White used to also do this, but it has been removed from white.

A few years back, we decided to stop doing this ability in white, as we don't use it too often, and it felt best as a super Unsummon. The label change matched what we did in the above section.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Can't be attacked

Primary: White
Secondary: Green

We don't do this often, but this effect keeps you from either being attacked for a turn or as long as a specific permanent is on the battlefield.

NEW:
Primary: White

We don't do this often, but this effect keeps you from either being attacked for a turn or as long as a specific permanent is on the battlefield.

This is an ability we don't use much, so there really wasn't a need for a secondary color. Green was originally listed because it had done it in the past, but it isn't something we do anymore in green.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Can't block

OLD:
Primary: Black
Secondary: Red

For a long time we separated black from red by making black have the "can't block" drawback on its creatures and red have the "must attack" drawback on its creatures. Time has shown that the "can't block" drawback leads to better gameplay, so we've started letting red get it from time to time.

NEW:
Primary: Black and red

For a long time we separated black from red by making black have the "can't block" drawback on its creatures and red have the "must attack" drawback on its creatures. Time has shown that the "can't block" drawback leads to better gameplay, so we've started using it on red as much as black.

This change is an example of us drifting to what works better in gameplay. "Must attack" feels very red, but it just plays a lot worse than "can't block", so we've just starting using "can't block" a lot more in red, enough to move this to primary in red.

CHANGE TEXT: Card Draw

OLD:
Blue is the best at card drawing. It has the most of it and no restrictions. Black's card drawing must involve paying some other cost, most often life but sometimes sacrificing permanents. Green's card draw is usually tied to creatures but occasionally tied to land. White has a very narrow band of card drawing where it's focused on having to use a specific strategy (like say having a deck full of Equipment). All colors get cantrips (spells that draw you a single card). Red doesn't get any card advantage, with two exceptions—impulsive draw and wheeling. (See impulsive draw and "wheeling.")

NEW:
Blue is the best at card drawing. It has the most of it and no restrictions. Black's card drawing must involve paying some other cost, most often life but sometimes sacrificing permanents. Green's card draw is tied to creatures. In the past we've also connected it to land, but that ended up making green card draw a little too much like blue, so we've pulled back from that. All colors get cantrips (spells that draw you a single card). Blue gets the best cantrip spells, white gets the best cantrips smaller creatures and green gets the best cantrip larger creatures. While white is still tertiary at card drawing, we have added some new abilities for white to draw cards. The big limitation is that white tends to draw over time rather than all at once, so it has a once per turn limit on card drawing (multiplayer does allow white on occasion to draw multiple cards tied to how many opponents a player has). Other than cantrips, red only draws cards with three exceptions — impulsive draw, "punisher" effects, and wheeling. (See impulsive draw, "punisher" effects, and "wheeling.")

The popularity of the Commander format has caused us to do a lot of rethinking about how each color draws cards (as card flow is even more important in that format). Blue and black have stayed mainly the same. We've dialed down green card drawing a little (it's still secondary, but in more ways that mirror green's style of play and no longer tied to lands, just creatures), upped red a little (impulsive draw has a higher as-fan than it used to), and defined how exactly white was going to draw.

CHANGE STATUS: Card filtering

OLD:
Card filtering (Look at the top N cards of your library and put N in your hand and put the rest on the bottom of the library in any order.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Green

Blue is the color of information, so it loves having the ability to choose what exactly it gets to draw. Sometimes card filtering looks similar to looting, where you draw some number of cards and then discard a close number. When green does this, it can usually only get a subset of permanents into its hand.

NEW:
Card filtering (Look at the top N cards of your library and put N in your hand and put the rest on the bottom of the library in any order.)

Primary: Blue and green

Blue is the color of information, so it loves having the ability to choose what exactly it gets to draw. Sometimes card filtering looks similar to looting, where you draw some number of cards and then discard a close number. When green does this, it can usually only get a subset of permanents (usually creatures and/or lands) into its hand.

As we've been doing less tutoring, we've done more searching through some number of cards on top of the library. As such, green filtering for lands and/or creatures has gone up in as-fan, enough that we moved green to primary along with blue.

CHANGE TEXT AND STATUS: Counter target activated/triggered ability

OLD:
Primary: Blue Secondary: Green

For a while this was a green effect, but we've moved it to be more in blue.

NEW:
Primary: Blue
Tertiary: Green

For a while this was a green effect, but we've moved it to be more in blue. Green does it on rare occasion usually to counter artifact activations these days.

This ability started in green but moved to be primary in blue. This change relflects that this ability isn't used very much anymore in green.

CHANGE TEXT & ADD SUBSECTION: Creature destruction, single creature

OLD:

  • Destroy target creature.

    Primary: Black

    Black is king of creature destruction and is the one color that can kill regardless of circumstance.

  • Destroy target creature with power 4 or greater.

    As champion of the little guy, white will also destroy large creatures.

NEW:

  • Destroy target creature.

    Primary: Black
    Secondary: White

    Black is king of creature destruction and is the one color that can kill regardless of circumstance. White can kill a single creature, but usually at a higher cost. Sometimes in both white and black this spell exiles the creature instead of destroying it.

While black is still number one in creature destruction, I wanted to reflect the fact that white has raised its as-fan and become the clear number two in the ability.
  • Destroy target creature with power 3 or greater.

    As champion of the little guy, white will also destroy large creatures. We've moved the floor of the ability from power 4 to power 3.

I wanted to reflect that we moved the line from always being 4 or more to sometimes being 3 or more.
  • Destroy target creature. It's controller gets compensation.

    Primary: White

    This ability used to be in white and blue (flavored as transformation in blue), but it's now just a white ability.

This is a bigger change. Blue used to be able to destroy a creature and give its controller a token creature as a means of expressing transmutation. After a lot of feedback from players, we decided that it felt wrong in blue as blue isn't supposed to be able to destroy creatures, so we now let it change creatures' stats temporarily or with an aura that can later be removed. Compensation removal (I kill your creature and you get something in exchange) is now solely in white.

CHANGE TEXT: Creature destruction, mass creature

OLD:

  • Destroy all creatures with power 4 or greater.

    Primary: White

    Killing big creatures is a white thing so it can be combined with mass creature kill. The number is most often 4 power, but occasionally can be tweaked slightly up or down.

NEW:

  • Destroy all creatures with power 3/4 or greater.

    Primary: White

    Killing big creatures is a white thing so it can be combined with mass creature kill. The number is most often 3 power, but occasionally can be tweaked up. White will occasionally also do mass destruction based on other criteria, but it tends to destroy all creatures of that quality.

Just as with the one-shot creature kill, white's line has moved from 4 or greater to sometimes being 3 or greater.

CHANGE TEXT, STATUS, & REMOVE SOME SUBSECTIONS: Creature pumping

OLD:

  • +N/+N (on spells)

    Primary: White and green
    Secondary: Black

    The most common use of this is on Giant Growth–like effects in green, usually +3/+3 but it can vary a little. White's pumping is usually +2/+2 or smaller, but it most often will grant an ability as well. The one exception for white is that it can get larger pumps if restricted to blockers. Black will occasionally get smaller buffs, usually with an ability added. All three colors default in this ability to being on instants.

  • +N/+N (on Auras)

    Primary: White and green
    Secondary: Blue, black, and red

    All colors have access to Auras that grant +N/+N. Blue usually doesn't do much more than +1/+1. White, black, and red tend to top out at +2/+2. Green is the one color that regularly grants +3/+3 and above on Auras.

  • +N/-N (on Auras)

    Primary: Black
    Secondary: Red
    Tertiary: Blue

    These tend to be flavored as "push your luck" cards that can double as creature kill. Black will go up to -3 on the toughness, whereas red tends to stop at -2. Blue will do a "make me a shapeshifter" flavored Aura from time to time.

  • -N/+N (on spells)

    Primary: White

    We almost never make this type of spell, but white would be the recipient if we did.

  • -N/+N (on Auras)

    Primary: White

    This is another area in which we almost never make cards.

  • -N/-0 (on creatures)

    Primary: Blue

    There's no reason to do this on your own creature. If we're going to let you lower a creature's power, we will let you raise its toughness accordingly. We do occasionally make a creature that lets you activate to do this targetting an opponent's creature. This ties into the "shrink" flavor seen on the spells.

NEW:

  • +N/+N (on spells)

    Primary: White and green
    Secondary: Black and red

    The most common use of this is on Giant Growth–like effects in green, usually +3/+3 but it can vary a little. White's pumping is usually +2/+2 or smaller, but it most often will grant an ability as well. The three exception for white is that it can get larger pumps if counting the number of creatures you have, the number of plains you have, or is restricted to blockers. Black will occasionally get smaller buffs, usually with an ability added. Red gets buffs but usually the power is higher than the toughness. All four colors default in this ability to being on instants as it's a combat trick.

This change reflects two things. One, we're allowing white to get larger creature boosts under certain circumstances, and two, we've started letting red get access to this ability on spells.
  • +N/+N (on Auras)

    Primary: White and green
    Secondary: Blue, black, and red

    All colors have access to Auras that grant +N/+N. White, blue, black, and red tend to top out at +2/+2. Green is the one color that regularly grants +3/+3 and above on Auras.

I changed the language because while green is the only one to get +3/+3 and above regularly, we do let other colors get it on rare occasion.
  • +N/-N (on Auras)

    Primary: Black
    Secondary: Red

    These tend to be flavored as "push your luck" cards that can double as creature kill. Black will go up to -3 on the toughness, whereas red tends to stop at -2.

This isn't an area we use any more in blue, so I removed it as tertiary.

REMOVE SUBSECTION: Creature pumping, your team, one-shot

  • +0/+N to your team

    Primary: White

    We don't do many of these types of spells any more, but they belong in white.

REMOVE SUBSECTION: Creature pumping, their team, one shot

  • -0/-N to their team

    Primary: Black

    This is not an effect we do often.

REMOVE SUBSECTION: Creature pumping, your team, ongoing

  • +0/+N to your team

    Primary: White

    We don't do this style of effect often any more because it tends to gum up board states, but it's white when we do it.

REMOVE SUBSECTION: Creature pumping, their team, one-shot

  • -0/-N to their team

    Primary: Black

    This is not an effect we do often.

These four subsections just don't get used any more, so I pulled them.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: "Creatureball"

OLD:
"Creatureball" (This creature enters the battlefield with X +1/+1 counters.)

Primary: Green

This is a creature with an X in its cost determining how big it's going to be.

NEW:
Variable creature (This creature enters the battlefield with X +1/+1 counters.)

Primary: Green
Tertiary: Black and red

This is a creature with an X in its cost determining how big it's going to be.

We've decided that this ability is fun and have started using it in black and red in addition to green. I also changed the label as no one seems to use the term "creatureball" any more.

CHANGE STATUS & TEXT: Defender

OLD:
Primary: White
Secondary: Blue, black, red, and green

Basically, everyone can have defender, but it leans toward white philosophically as it's the most defensive color.

NEW:
Primary: White and blue
Secondary: Black, red, and green

Basically, everyone can have defender, but it leans toward white and blue philosophically as those are the most defensive colors.

This change just reflects that we've been using defender more in blue.

CHANGE TEXT: Direct damage, single target

OLD:

  • Deal N damage to creature and/or player.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: Black

    Red is king of direct damage and has it in many forms, including the most straightforward versions. Black will do direct damage to creatures or players and then gain life. (See drain life) Black will sometimes deal damage to players as a punishment. Black use to mostly do life loss to players, but as we've been trying to give black more answers to planeswalkers, we've been shifting this more into damage.

  • Sacrifice a creature and deal damage to creature/player equal to the sacrificed creature's power/toughness.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: Black

    In red, this is flavored as throwing the creatures. In black, it's more treated as a sacrifice for a ritual.

  • Deal N damage to a creature/player where N is the number of cards in your hand/your opponent's hand.

    Primary: Red

    We tend to do this in sets when red has a more spell-based theme.

  • Deal N damage to target attacking or blocking creature.

    Primary: White

    White's direct damage only shows up in combat.

NEW:

  • Deal N damage to creature, planeswalker, and/or player.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: White and black

    Red is king of direct damage and has it in many forms, including the most straightforward versions. White can do damage where N is the number of creatures you control. Black will do direct damage to creatures, planeswalkers, or players and then gain life. (See drain life.)

This change added in planeswalker as a target and made white secondary as there is now an ability (dealing damage equal to number of creatures) where white gets to do damage. We moved it from red to white because red didn't need it and we wanted more tools for white to play into its strength of having large armies of small creatures.
  • Sacrifice a creature and deal damage to creature/planeswalker/player equal to the sacrificed creature's power/toughness.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: Black

    In red, this is flavored as throwing the creatures. In black, it's more treated as a sacrifice for a ritual.

Adding in planeswalker as a target.
  • Deal N damage to a creature/planeswalker/player where N is the number of cards in your hand/your opponent's hand.

    Primary: Red

    We tend to do this in sets when red has a more spell-based theme.

Adding in planeswalker as a target.
  • Deal N damage to target attacking or blocking creature.

    Primary: White

    Other than basing damage on number of creatures, white's direct damage only shows up in combat.

I was again referencing white's ability to deal damage equal to number of creatures.

CHANGE TEXT: Direct damage, multiple targets

OLD:
Red will deal damage to all or a subset of creatures, sometimes dealing a small amount (1 or 2 damage, killing small creatures), sometimes doing larger amounts that kill most creatures. Red's damage in this area most often hits all creatures, including its own. White will occasionally deal damage to multiple creatures or all attackers or blockers.

NEW:
Red will deal damage to all or a subset of creatures, sometimes dealing a small amount (1 or 2 damage, killing small creatures), sometimes doing larger amounts that kill most creatures. Red's damage in this area most often hits all creatures, including its own. White will occasionally deal damage to multiple creatures if they all are attackers and/or blockers.

I just massaged the text to better explain what white does. This isn't anything new.

ADD NEW SECTION: Discard as a cost

NEW:
Discard as a cost

Primary: Black
Secondary: Red
Tertiary: White, blue, and green

While all colors have access to discarding cards as a cost, black does it most and red does it second most.

After the conversation with the Council of Colors, I decided to add in sections about using various elements as a resource.

CHANGE LABEL: Discard

OLD:
Discard

NEW:
Discard as effect

This was just clarifying the label to separate it from the previous section.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Enchantment destruction

OLD:
Primary: White and green

White and green usually have one enchantment destruction card in common, although green's is usually also a spell that destroy both artifacts and enchantments. (See enchantment destruction.)

NEW:
Primary: White and green
Secondary: Black

White and green usually have one enchantment destruction card in common, Green's usually also destroys artifacts, sometimes white does as well. (See artifact destruction.) We've also started to let black have enchantment removal. It's clearly at a power level lower than white or green, and often forces the opponent to sacrifice the enchantment or makes you pay an extra cost.

This was one of the bigger changes since 2017. We've started allowing black to destroy enchantments. It's clearly third in the ability, after white and green, and it usually comes with an additional cost. Often it only works on opponents' enchantments.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: "Enchantress" ability

OLD:
Primary: White
Secondary: Green

This ability started in Limited Edition (Alpha) on Verduran Enchantress, a green card. It stayed in green for many years, but has drifted toward white as part of us experimenting with white draw in narrow deck themes. The ability has still done a bit in green.

NEW:
Primary: White and Green

This ability started in Limited Edition (Alpha) on Verduran Enchantress, a green card. It has bounced back and forth between green and white, and now can be done by either. In white, it has the limitation of only drawing one card per turn as that's a new rule for white card drawing. The best ones are probably going to appear in white and green.

This ability has bounced back and forth between white and green. We finally decided that each can have it but tilted toward how their color does it.

CHANGE LABEL: Fight, one-sided

OLD:
Fight, one-sided (Target creature deals damage to equal to its power to another target creature.)

NEW:
"Bite" (Target creature deals damage to equal to its power to another target creature.)

Here's one of the few cases where I changed a label to a slang term.

CHANGE TEXT AND STATUS: Flash

OLD:
Flash

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Green
Tertiary: White, black, and red

Everyone gets some access to flash. Blue gets it the most as it plays into the color's reactive play style. Green gets it as one of its versions of creature destruction. White, black, and red get flash when they functionally need it to get an effect to work, most often with reactive enters-the-battlefield effects.

NEW:
Flash

Primary: Blue
Secondary: White, black, and green
Tertiary: Red

Everyone gets some access to flash. Blue gets it the most as it plays into the color's reactive play style. In the last few years, we made it secondary in white and black, and kept it secondary in green. White tends to get the small cheap and mid-size defensive creatures, black gets creatures that can surprise kill you, often with higher power than toughness, and green gets bigger creatures. Red can get flash when it functionally needs it to get an effect to work, most often with reactive enters-the-battlefield effects.

This is another evergreen keyword change since 2017. We added flash as secondary in both white and black. We talked about removing it from green, but finally decided that it's more a useful tool than a mechanic in a traditional sense and each color could use it on different kinds of creatures (and occasionally other card types).

CHANGE TEXT AND LABEL: "Flicker"

OLD:
Primary: White and blue
Tertiary: Black

This ability appears in both white and blue. Black occasionally messes around with this effect putting the creature in the graveyard instead of into exile.

NEW:
Primary: White and blue

This ability appears in both white and blue, although we've recently been trying to push it a little more in white.

Black can sacrifice a creature and then later reanimate it (Rescue from the Underworld as an example), but while this functions similarly to flicker, it's a separate thing, so I removed it.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: Forced block

OLD:
Forced block (Target creature must block this turn.)

Primary: Red
Secondary: Green

We don't do this effect often, but red and green are the colors that can force creatures to block.

NEW:
Forced block (Target creature must block this turn.)

Primary: Green
Secondary: Red

We don't do this effect often, but green does it most, then red.

In our Council of Colors meeting, it was pointed out that these were backwards based on how we've been using it, so I went and looked and they were correct, so I changed it.

REMOVE SECTION: "Freeze" land

"Freeze" land (Tap target land. That land doesn't untap during its controller's next untap step)

Primary: Red

We've been experimenting with this in red as a "land destruction lite."

This was an experiment we tried in red that ended up not working out, so I removed it.

CHANGE TEXT & ADD SUBSECTIONS: Friendly to a card type

OLD:

  • Friendly to artifacts

    Primary: Blue

    Blue loves artifacts and, as such, is the color that interacts the most with them. White's interaction is mostly with Equipment, while red often likes to use artifacts as a resource.

  • Friendly to enchantments

    Primary: White
    Secondary: Green

    White and green are also the two colors that most appreciate enchantments.

NEW:

  • Friendly to artifacts

    Primary: White and blue
    Secondary: Red

    White and blue, as the colors of civilization, are both very friendly with artifacts. Red tends to be associated with Equipment and Vehicles (along with white) or using artifacts as a resource (interacting with things like treasure artifact tokens).

I changed this around to better reflect what we've been doing. While blue still loves artifacts, so too does white and red, on occasion.
  • Friendly to enchantments

    Primary: White and green
    Tertiary: Black

    White and green are also the two colors that most appreciate enchantments. Black sometimes cares in sets with an enchantment theme or subtheme.

Like artifacts, I tweaked things to better reflect how we've been using it.
  • Friendly to planeswalkers

    Primary: White

    White is the color that most interacts with planeswalkers. It can search the library for them and get them back from the graveyard, among other positive interactions.

This is a new section, one I skipped back in 2017 because no one, at the time, did this.

ADD NEW SECTION: Friendly to other qualities

Friendly to other qualities

  • Friendly to legendary permanents

    Primary: White

    White is the color that most interacts with legendary permanents. It can search the library for them and get them back from the graveyard, among other positive interactions.

The popularity of Commander has made us make more legendary cards which led us to caring about legendary permanents more, enough that we dedicated a color, white, to it.
  • Friendly to low mana value cards

    Primary: White

    White is the color that most positively interacts with low mana value (anywhere from mana value 3 or less) cards. It can search the library for them and get them back from the graveyard, among other positive interactions.

White's been doing this forever, but I forgot to mention it in the 2017 version.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Haste

OLD:
Primary: Red
Secondary: Black
Tertiary: Green

Haste is a weird case. Red is primary. Black is secondary, but mostly for numbers in Limited. Green is tertiary but is used by development for Constructed. So, there aren't a lot of green creatures with haste, but the ones that do have it tend to be good. This arrangement came about because design and development had different needs for haste in other colors; this was a compromise to make both groups happy.

NEW:
Primary: Red
Secondary: Black and green

Haste shows up most often on red creatures. We've moved green into second place for haste. Black is still technically secondary but gets haste less often than green.

We just kept making more and more haste creatures in green, so we decided to change green to secondary to reflect what we're doing. Us moving it up in green moved it down a bit in black, but not enough to knock it down to tertiary.

CHANGE TEXT: "Illusion" ability

OLD:
"Illusion ability" (Sacrifice this creature if it is the target of a spell or ability.)

Primary: Blue

This ability started in black on Spirits and was known as "skulking," but has since been moved into blue and attached to Illusions.

NEW:
"Illusion ability" (Sacrifice this creature if it is the target of a spell.)

Primary: Blue

This ability started in black on Spirits and was known as "skulking," but has since been moved into blue and attached to Illusions. The ability used to care about spells and abilities, but now just cares about spells.

I just wanted to reflect that we removed having abilities work against the "illusion" ability. It just made them play a lot better to make you have to dedicate a spell to get rid of the creature.

CHANGE TEXT: "Impulsive" draw

OLD:
This is red's primary way of card drawing, playing into red's impulsive nature of wanting to do things now.

NEW:
This is red's primary way of card drawing, playing into red's impulsive nature of wanting to do things now. Sometimes we let you cast the spell until the end of your next turn.

Just added that sometimes we let it last longer than the end of the turn.

CHANGE TEXT, STATUS, & LABEL: "Khabal" ability

OLD:
"Khabál" Ability (Whenever another creature dies, put a +1/+1 counter on this creature.)

Primary: Black
Secondary: Red

This ability is nicknamed after the first creature to have it: Khabál Ghoul from Arabian Nights. As black is the color of death, it's long been a black ability, but we've started doing occasionally in red.

NEW:
Rewards for death (Whenever another creature/creature you control dies . . . )

Primary: Black
Secondary: White
Tertiary: Red

Black is the color that most triggers off of other things dying, usually flavored as gaining strength from others' pain. White usually gains life, creates a token creature, or helps the creature go somewhere other than the graveyard, often your hand. Red tends to create creature tokens or deal damage.

"Khabál" refers to a card from Arabian Knights card, Magic's first expansion, so I changed it away from slang. We've started using this ability more in white and less in red, so I wanted to reflect that.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Land destruction

OLD:
Primary: Red
Secondary: Black and green
Tertiary: White

This whole category is skewed by the fact that we do a lot fewer of these effects than we once did. Red still has the most land destruction effects, followed by black and green. White only destroys lands when it does mass land destruction—something that, although still in white's color pie, we simply don't do often.

NEW:
Primary: Red
Tertiary: Black and green

Red is the one color that regular does land destruction. Black and green are still able to do it, but do it very infrequently. Most land destruction in green these days (and "these days" hasn't been in a while) is "destroy target noncreature permanent."

Early Magic had a lot more land destruction, so we put it into three colors. When we reduced the amount of it, we found we really only needed it in one color. I think this was true in 2017, but sometimes I get my head stuck in how we used to do things, so I updated it to reflect modern usage. Black and green still have access to land destruction, but we use it sparingly.

ADD NEW SECTION: Life loss as a cost

NEW:
Life loss as a cost

Primary: Black
Tertiary: White, blue, red, and green

Black is the color that most often uses life as a cost. All colors have access to it on rare occasions where the world calls for it (like New Phyrexia).

Just as I added discard as a cost, I added life as a cost. I'm hoping each time I update this article, I continue to capture things I'd previously forgotten.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: Life Loss

Old:
Life loss

Primary: Black

Black will sometimes just make players lose life straight up without a drain effect. We more often make them drain effects these days (or just direct damage) because the damage allows black an answer to planeswalkers.

New:
Life loss as an effect

Primary: Black

Black will sometimes just make players lose life straight up without a drain effect.

This change was just to differentiate it from life as a cost.

CHANGE STATUS: Lifelink

OLD:
Primary: White
Secondary: Black

NEW:
Lifelink

Primary: White and black

It was pointed out to me in the Council of Colors meeting that black has just as many lifelinkers as white, so I changed it to reflect that.

CHANGE LABEL: "Maro" ability

OLD:
Primary: Blue and green

NEW:
Primary: Blue
Secondary: Green

While Maro will always have a soft spot in my heart, this ability has definitely become less of a green ability over time.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: "Milling"

OLD:
"Milling" (Target player puts the top N cards from his or her library into his or her graveyard.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Black

This ability for many years was only in blue, but recently we've started allowing black to do it as well.

NEW:
Milling (You/target player puts the top N cards from his or her library into his or her graveyard.)

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Black

This ability for many years was only in blue, but a number of years ago we started allowing black to do it as well. Both colors also get self-mill both as an effect and a cost.

The change is reflecting that milling went from being slang to being an actual keyword.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Planeswalker destruction

OLD:
Primary: Black
Secondary: Green

Black is the color that regularly destroys planeswalkers, often using "destroy creature or planeswalker." Green doesn't call out planeswalker by name (Nissa's Defeat being an exception), but can "destroy target noncreature." Red is not listed here because it uses damage to deal with planeswalkers rather than destroy them outright.

NEW:
Primary: Black
Tertiary: Green

Black is the color that regularly destroys planeswalkers, often using "destroy creature or planeswalker." Green doesn't call out planeswalker by name (Nissa's Defeat being an exception), but can "destroy target noncreature." Green is now tertiary in this as we don't use this ability much anymore in green. Red is not listed here because it uses damage to deal with planeswalkers rather than destroy them outright.

This change is reflecting us using "destroy target noncreature permanent" a lot less in green.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: Playing cards off the top of library, at a cost

OLD:
Playing cards off top of library, at a cost

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Green

This effect is usually on a permanent that makes the top of your library be played face-up. You may then cast cards off the top of your library. Green, when it does this effect, usually limits you to playing a subset of permanents.

NEW:
Playing cards off top of your library, paying their mana cost (You may look at the top card of your library and if it's a [blah] you may play it)

Secondary: White, blue, black, red, and green

We don't do this effect very often, so I made it primary in no color. Any color can have access to it, but it must play cards from a subset that make sense for that color. Blue is the color we've let cast any card off the top.

This might be the only ability that secondary in all and primary in none. I wasn't sure how else to reflect "anyone can do it but not often."

ADD NEW SECTION: Playing cards off the top of opponent's library

Playing cards off the top of opponent's library

Primary: Blue and black
Secondary: Red

Blue and black, being the sneaky colors, are the two that most often cast spells off the opponent's deck. We occasionally let red do it, but usually there's a short duration during which you can do it, unlike blue and black that usually doesn't have a time limit.

This was another addition mentioned in the Council of Colors meeting. I'd simply forgotten it back in 2017.

CHANGE TEXT: Protection

OLD:
Protection

Primary: White
Tertiary: Blue, black, red, and green

Protection has dropped from evergreen status (meaning it shows up in most sets) to deciduous status (we can use it when we need it), but it still will show up from time to time. It's mostly a white ability that can show up in other colors, usually with protection from something the color dislikes (an enemy color, artifacts for green, etc.)

NEW:
Protection

Primary: White
Tertiary: Blue, black, red, and green

Protection has changed back from deciduous status back to evergreen status, but it doesn't show up in every set. It's mostly a white ability that can show up in other colors, usually with protection from something the color dislikes (an enemy color, artifacts for green, etc.)

Protection was evergreen. Then it became deciduous. Then it became evergreen again, but not used every set. I think protection just doesn't like committing to a label.

CHANGE TEXT: Prowess

OLD:
Prowess

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Red
Tertiary: White

This ability started out as a Jeskai keyword in Khans of Tarkir. It filled a gap we had in blue and red, so that's where we focused it. White has not yet gotten a prowess card outside of Khans of Tarkir block, but I believe it eventually will.

NEW:
Prowess

Primary: Blue
Secondary: Red
Tertiary: White

This ability started out as a Jeskai keyword in Khans of Tarkir. It filled a gap we had in blue and red, so that's where we focused it. White has not yet gotten a prowess card outside of Khans of Tarkir block, but I believe it eventually will. For a while this ability was evergreen, but it's since become deciduous (and even then, barely). I don't list most of the deciduous abilities in this article, but as this used to be evergreen, I left it in.

I thought long and hard whether I was supposed to remove this section as I don't normally list most deciduous mechanics in this document, but in the end, decided to leave it in and just note the change in status.

REMOVE SUBSECTION: Putting cards from hand onto battlefield

Putting cards from hand onto the battlefield

Primary: Green

This isn't an effect we use all that often, but it's green when we use it.

I removed this as we just don't use it any more.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: "Reanimation"

OLD:
Primary: Black
Secondary: White, red, and green
Tertiary: Blue

Black is the best at bringing the dead back to life. It has no real restrictions on what it can bring back. White tends to reanimate smaller creatures, usually with a converted mana cost of 2 or less. It will occasionally reanimate a creature type that is mostly white (things like Angels or Humans). Red has Phoenixes. Green has creatures that can bring themselves back from the graveyard. Both black and white will sometimes reanimate a swath of creatures all at once. Blue, on rare occasion, can make a copy of a creature out of the graveyard.

NEW:
Primary: White and black
Secondary: Red, and green

Black is the best at bringing the dead back to life. It has no real restrictions on what it can bring back. White tends to reanimate smaller creatures, usually with a converted mana cost of 2 or less, but we've started letting white bring back larger creatures on occasion. Red has Phoenixes. Green has creatures that can bring themselves back from the graveyard. Both black and white will sometimes reanimate a swath of creatures all at once.

We've started letting white have more reanimation effects, including ones allowing it to get bigger creatures. In 2017, I included blue thinking maybe we'd let blue copy dead creatures, but it's not something we've chosen to do, so I removed blue.

ADD NEW SUBSECTION

"Reanimate" permanent (Return a permanent card from a graveyard to the battlefield.)

Primary: White

White is the one color that can reanimate any permanent type, so it gets to reanimate "target permanent." It can also reanimate "target artifact," "target enchantment," or "target planeswalker." It doesn't specifically get "target land," but can do so when it's "target permanent."

This isn't an ability we used to do but have started letting white have access to.

CHANGE TEXT & CHANGE STATUS: "Restocking"

OLD:
Primary: Green
Secondary: Blue

This is a means of getting cards in your graveyard back into your library. Green does it most as a "cycle of life" flavor, but blue does it on occasion, sometimes also shuffling your hand in as well and then drawing you cards.

NEW:
Primary: Blue and green

This is a means of getting cards in your graveyard back into your library. Green does it as a "cycle of life" flavor, while blue is flavored more as magical manipulation. Blue sometimes also shuffles your hand in as well and then draws you cards.

Just reflecting that we do this in blue as much as green.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Returning cards from graveyard to hand

OLD:

  • Return target artifact from graveyard to hand.

    Primary: Blue
    Secondary: White

    Blue has the best affinity for artifacts (pun intended), so it's the color that gets them back the easiest, although white can do it as well. Sometimes white will get back Equipment in particular, if that's a theme in the set.

  • Return target sorcery from graveyard to hand.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: Blue

    This is the same as for getting back instants.

NEW:

  • Return target artifact from graveyard to hand.

    Primary: White

    Blue used to be the color that returned artifacts from the graveyard to the hand, but the ability is now in white.

We've chosen to make this a white thing and no longer do it in blue.
  • Return target sorcery from graveyard to hand.

    Primary: Blue
    Secondary: Red

    This is the same as for getting back instants.

It was pointed out at the meeting that I had these backwards.

CHANGE TEXT: Redirection

OLD:
Spell redirection (Change the target of target spell with a single target.)

Primary: Blue and red

The same thing happened with spell redirection as spell copying, and we ended up with the same solution—letting both colors do it.

NEW:
Spell redirection (Change the target of target spell and/or ability with a single target.)

Primary: Blue and red

The same thing happened with spell redirection as spell copying, and we ended up with the same solution—letting both colors do it. We've started letting some of these effects redirect abilities as well as spells.

We'd tweaked how we use this ability, so I wanted to reflect that.

CHANGE TEXT & STATUS: Taxing

OLD:
Primary: White

Taxing cards are ones that force the opponent to pay some cost to do an activity they could normally do without an additional cost. Taxing cards are most often creatures and enchantments, but occasionally are done as one-shot spells.

NEW:
Primary: White
Secondary: Blue

Taxing cards are ones that force the opponent to pay some cost to do an activity they could normally do without an additional cost. Taxing cards are most often creatures and enchantments, but occasionally are done as one-shot spells. Most of blue's taxing has gone to white (it used to be primary in blue), but blue still gets taxing counterspells (such as Mana Leak).

It was pointed out to me that I'd forgotten that blue has taxing counterspells.

CHANGE TEXT: "Transformation"

OLD:
Primary: Blue

Transformation can be temporary, through a one-shot spell that lasts for the turn, or more permanent, usually through an Aura. It overwrites the base power and toughness of the creature. This ability used to be in both blue and white, but we decided to focus it in blue.

NEW:
Primary: Blue

Transformation can be temporary, through a one-shot spell that lasts for the turn, or more permanent, usually through an Aura. It overwrites the base power and toughness of the creature. This ability used to be in both blue and white, but we decided to focus it in blue. Sometimes blue can overwrite what the creature is currently doing and just make it the "transformed" creature. The one thing that we've taken from blue is destroying or exiling a creature and then giving the controller of that creature a creature token as a means of flavoring transformation. That is now a white ability flavored as giving compensation for destroying/exiling the creature. This means all of blue's transformation abilities are auras or limited effects on spells or activations.

As I mentioned earlier in this article, we've taken away blue's ability to destroy creatures and then give its controller a creature token as a means of representing transformation. That's solely a white ability now.

CHANGE TEXT & LABELS: "Tutoring"

OLD:

  • "Tutor" for an instant or sorcery.

    Primary: Blue

    When tutoring, the two spell types are often put together and blue seeks them out.

  • "Tutor" for a land.

    Primary: Green
    Tertiary: White, blue, black, and red

    Green, being one of the colors most closely associated with land and mana, is the best at tutoring for land. It occasionally will put them directly onto the battlefield. The other four colors are allowed to occasionally tutor for their own basic land type.

  • "Tutor" for a planeswalker.

    Primary: White

    Only one card has done this so far, and it was white.

NEW:

  • "Tutor" for an instant or sorcery.

    Primary: Blue
    Secondary: Red

    When tutoring, the two spell types are often put together and blue seeks them out. We occasionally let red search out red instants and sorceries (usually to get things like direct damage spells).

As "spells matter" has become a common blue-red archetype, we've started letting red do this.
  • "Tutor" for a land.

    Primary: Green
    Tertiary: White, blue, black, and red

    Green, being one of the colors most closely associated with land and mana, is the best at tutoring for land. It occasionally will put them directly onto the battlefield. The other four colors are allowed to occasionally tutor for their own basic land type. White is getting more tutoring for a plains as a catch-up feature when it's behind on land.

We've been a little more proactive letting white get plains as a catch-up feature, so I wanted to point that out. It's not a lot, so I went back and forth between secondary and tertiary.
  • "Tutor" for a planeswalker.

    Primary: White

    White is the color that cares the most about planeswalkers, so it's the color that can tutor for them.

This is a new subsection as we've started letting white have more "planeswalker matters" abilities.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: Vigilance

OLD:
Primary: White
Secondary: Green

White tends to get this on creatures where the power is equal to or less than the toughness, and seldom with a power greater than 3. Green tends to get this ability on larger creatures to differentiate it from white.

NEW:
Primary: White
Secondary: Blue and green

White tends to get this on creatures where the power is equal to or less than the toughness, and seldom with a power greater than 3. Green tends to get this ability on larger creatures to differentiate it from white. We've recently decided to also make blue secondary in vigilance because we were looking for more creature abilities to use in blue. We're still feeling out what kind of blue creatures will get vigilance.

This another of our recent big changes, and something that hasn't happened on printed cards yet. Play design came to the Council of Colors saying they wanted the addition of vigilance to help in making limited relevant blue creatures, so we added it as a secondary in blue. We talked about removing vigilance from green but realized that there were needs for it in green, so we let both blue and green be secondary. We're still figuring out how exactly we're going to differentiate it in the various colors.

CHANGE TEXT & LABEL: "Wheeling"

OLD:
Primary: Blue and red

There's a big debate in R&D as to whether this is supposed to be a red ability. It obviously goes all the way back to Limited Edition (Alpha) with Wheel of Fortune, but it's a raw form of card advantage that's supposed to be something red is bad at. For now, it stays in red's (and blue's) part of the color pie.

NEW:
Primary: Red

There's a big debate in R&D as to whether this is supposed to be a red ability. It obviously goes all the way back to Limited Edition (Alpha) with Wheel of Fortune, but it's a raw form of card advantage that's supposed to be something red is bad at. For now, it stays in red's part of the color pie.

We decided that we do this infrequently enough that it could just be a red thing. We felt blue didn't need it nearly as bad a red did.

New Sections

What follows are new added sections.

+1/+1 Counter (creation and caring)

Primary: White and green
Secondary: Black
Tertiary: Blue and red

Any color can put +1/+1 counters on themselves, but white and green are best overall at doing it including putting them on other creatures.

As part of the Council of Colors meeting, each member listed the things in their color that I'd forgotten in the 2017 article. A lot of the new sections, such as creating and caring +1/+1 counters, came from that list.

Cast spells from opponent's graveyard/exile.

Primary: Blue and black

The two sneakiest colors are the ones most likely to use the opponent's own resources against them. Sometimes blue and black will make the player discard/mill the cards into exile where they can later cast them.

One of my blind spots back in 2017 was using your opponent's resources.

Cast spells from your graveyard.

Primary: Black
Secondary: Blue and red
Tertiary: White and green

Black is the color most likely to cast cards from the graveyard, but it's something blue and red also do on occasion, especially instants and sorceries. I've listed white and green as tertiary because we do flashback with regularity.

This is an ability that we've started doing more.

Instant and/or sorcery triggers (Whenever you cast an instant and/or sorcery . . . )

Primary: Blue and red

Blue and red are the two colors with the highest percentage of spells (as opposed to creatures), so they are the two colors that most often care about them being cast.

"Artifact matters" becoming a popular blue-red drafting archetype has driven up the appearance of this ability.

Sacrifice a permanent.

  • Sacrifice an artifact.

    Primary: Black and red

    Black and red are the most likely to sacrifice artifacts to generate an effect.

  • Sacrifice a creature.

    Primary: Black and red

    Black and red are the two most likely colors to sacrifice creatures. This is often part of a draft archetype.

  • Sacrifice an enchantment.

    Primary: Red and green

    Red and green are the two colors that most often sacrifice enchantments. This only tends to get used in sets with enchantment themes.

  • Sacrifice a land.

    Primary: Red

    Red is the color most likely to sacrifice lands.

  • Sacrifice a permanent.

    Primary: Red
    Secondary: Black

    Red is the color most likely to sacrifice any permanent as it's the color that can individually sacrifice them all. We are letting black do this a little more.

Another blind spot from 2017 is using game elements as a resource. Here I spell out which color gets to sacrifice which permanent type.

Treasure creation (artifact tokens with "T, Sacrifice this artifact: Add one mana of any color.")

Primary: Red
Secondary: Black and green
Tertiary: Blue

As the color of temporary mana, red is best at treasure creation. Black and green can both make treasure, but black tends to usually require some additional cost. Green historically has not had a lot of treasure making cards, but it's squarely in pie for green to do so. For flavor reasons, like Pirates, blue occasionally creates Treasure.

This is another deciduous thing that I questioned whether to include, but as we've been using it a lot, I decided to include it.

"Torment" ability (Target player sacrifices a nonland permanent, pays 3 life, or discards a card.)

Primary: Black

We've been playing around with an ability giving the opponent some options of what to pay. This ability is being used in black.

Corey, black's representative on the Council, asked me to include this.

Ward (for mana)

Primary: White, blue, and green

Ward is a new evergreen ability. It makes any opponent who wishes to target the item with ward pay an additional cost. The most common way we use this is ward for mana and that's in white, blue and green. It's in white, because it's both the most protective and the taxing color, and it's in blue and green, flavored as antimagic, used in places where hexproof used to be.

Ward (for life)

Primary: Black and red

While, white, blue, and green get to have ward using mana, black and red get to use it with a life payment instead. Black also can get ward for discard.

Ward is the new evergreen ability we added since 2017. There are two main uses of it, so I talk about both.

And that's all the changes for this version of the mechanical color pie. I would like to thank all the members of the Council of Colors for their help with this update. We'll talk next about it when I update it in another four or more years.

 
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I sit down with Designer Matt Place, and we compare our Top 10 lists of the most influential Magic sets.


 
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#878: Planar Chaos Color Pie

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In this podcast, I explore the alternate-reality color pie of Planar Chaos.

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