When it comes to Magic the Gathering, some things just don’t make much sense. After all, this is a game where your monsters attack your opponents monsters and they do the same. However, after almost 25 years of Wizards of the Coast making cards, there are some things that just don’t make any sense at all. Here are the top five of them in my opinion.
5. Alternate Win Conditions: While there are some cards such as Coalition Victory and Darksteel Reactor which sort of make sense why they would win the game, there are others that don’t make as much sense. After all, Coalition Victory looks like the United Nations just stepped in for you, and Darksteel Reactor is practically the Death Star from Star Wars. However, there are some cards like Chance Encounter and Biovisionary that don’t make much sense why you would win the game. After all, Chance Encounter basically just says that if your strategy involves flipping coins a lot, then you’ll probably win, and Biovisionary is some sort of human wizard mutant thing that only gets along with copies of himself…All I know about him is that he doesn’t make much sense, and using him in your deck is almost never a wise thing to do.
4. Scepter/Crown/Throne of Empires and Shield/Sword/Helm of Kaldra: So, I have no idea what Wizards of the Coast was thinking when twice, they thought everyone would want to play cards that you have to have as a three piece combo. Well, back then it was harder to find cards in your deck. In fact, the only color that had that capability at the time was black, and few decks would like to run artifacts in black because blue and red interacted so much better with artifacts. Now, despite no one ever using them, I would like to ask, how is it that your artifacts get better just because you have other specific artifacts? If I was an artificer, I would totally think to make a scepter more powerful only if you have my specific throne and crown as well. Oh yeah, and I know, what if we made it so that having all three out is really hard? This is one of the most ridiculous combo sets I have ever seen, and I’m glad that they don’t do it any more
3. Power and toughness of humans: There are some things that don’t make sense, and then there are some things that really don’t make sense. One of these things that really does not make sense is how strong humans are compared to other monsters and even themselves. Which do you think is more powerful, a generic human soldier, or a rat? If you said that most times the rat, you’d be shockingly accurate. Lets just take a moment to realize that a human soldier will without any buff spells will lose in a fight to a rat. This isn’t even a mob of rats, but just one rat. However, this is far from the only instance of a messed up power and toughness. Some humans such as Caller of the Hunt, Crusader of Odric, and Westvale Cult Leader all are humans who get bigger if you control many creatures, yet they aren’t one full and complete unit. I would imagine that these creatures being infinitely large is not what Wizards of the Coast imagined when making these cards.
2. Vehicles on Kaladesh: Yes, there is an artifact type called vehicles, and I have thought of some ways that they make little to no sense. The way that vehicles in Magic works is that if you control one or more creatures whose combined power is greater than or equal to the crew cost, you can tap them, and now the vehicle can be its how creature until the end of your turn. However, like many new and abstract mechanics, this comes with many opportunities for flavor fails. For example, because the crew cost for something like Sky Skiff which has a crew cost of one, almost any creature can crew it, right? Well, it would make sense that something like a Toolcraft Exemplar would be able to operate it, there are many things that I would find to be incompetent to fly it. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think that Worldspine Wurm, Skysovereign, Consul Flagship, and Coral Eel would all have a hard time piloting this smaller skyship. Also, what happens if something unexpected happens and the vehicle is blown up while the pilots are inside? In the game, the creatures all have ejection seats apparently, so that they’re all safe, even if the vehicle is somehow destroyed like the opponent casting an Artifact Mutation on it. Also, one last thing to point out; the vehicles can be a legal target of Murder, so yeah. The concept of a vehicle probably shouldn’t have been brought to Magic in this way.
1. For the biggest flavor fail in all of Magic the Gathering, I’d say that it is none other than the idea of legendary creatures/planeswalkers. Both of these card types make absolutely no sense when both players have one of those out. The idea behind legendary creatures is that they are supposed to be the individuals who advance the story along. Some of these people make steadfast alliances and would never work with more than one individual at a time. How does it make sense that two players can each have a Captain Sisay as a member of their army? What would happen if the two would meet up? Is it that your legendary sneaks out when you aren’t looking and goes to your opponent when you aren’t looking? It also gets worse though, once you include the fact that your deck will most of the time have multiple copies of one or more legendary cards and planeswalkers. What is it like when your legendary dies, then oh wait, you play another? Ultimately, there are just some things best left unexplained.
Thank you for reading this blog post. While it is weird and unexpected that there are these flavor fails in Magic the Gathering, I do find it fun and entertaining to find more and more of them in a simple game. If you have any more bizarre flavor fails, please leave them down in the comment section for everyone to see. I would like to add a part 2 someday, and I’m open to suggestions.