Monday, May 28, 2007

The Colors of Magic

I have promised to write a post talking about the Dual Lands for a while now, but I think that in order for that post to make complete sense, a little bit of Magic background is necessary. So, I am going to first present this mini-Magic lesson on the Five Colors of Magic.

If you look at the back of a Magic card you'll see a symbol made of five colored dots (the symbol appears in the extreme left-hand side of my Store logo). These dots represent the five colors of Magic. Starting at the top and working clockwise you have White (although it looks a bit yellowish in the symbol), Blue, Black (appears more brown than Black), Red and Green.

Each of the five colors has its own strengths and weaknesses, its own specialties, if you will, in the type of Spells and Creatures that are available to it. Each has two colors that tend to ally with it, and two that tend to be its enemies. In the symbol, the five colors are arranged so that their allies are adjacent to them (one clockwise, one counterclockwise) and the enemies are across from them. And each color has a basic Land type associated with it, the simplest source of mana (magical energy) of that color.

For example, the color White has specialties in Order and Good. It is allied with Blue (which has a specialty of Reason/Thought, a good companion to Order) and with Green (which has a specialty of Life, a good companion to Good). Its enemies are Red (Chaos) and Black (Evil). White's basic Land type is the Plains.

The table below sums up the five colors and their attributes. Especially relevant to the coming Dual Land discussion is the idea of each color having 2 ally and 2 enemy colors.

ColorBasic LandSpecialtiesAlly ColorsEnemy Colors
White (W)
Order, Good
Blue, Green
Black, Red
Blue (U)
Reason/Thought, Water
Black, White
Red, Green
Black (B)
Death, Evil
Red, Blue
Green, White
Red (R)
Chaos, Fire
Green, Black
White, Blue
Green (G)
Life, Nature
White, Red
Blue, Black

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