Each color of magic in ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'' is associated with a whole philosophy about life, particular goals, and a particular set of magical strategies for winning the game. They're even informally talked about as though they were characters.

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:White]]

White is the color of [[LightEmUp light]], law, and [[HolyHandGrenade holy magic]]. It specializes in various forms of healing and protection (such as gaining life, preventing damage, and boosting creatures' toughness scores), efficient small creatures that reinforce each other, and abilities that dictate the flow of combat. White is chivalrous: rather than kill directly, it prefers to disable non-combative foes with spells like [[http://magiccards.info/som/en/2.html Arrest]] and [[http://magiccards.info/arc/en/3.html Oblivion Ring]], but has no qualms about killing creatures during the combat phase, as seen in cards like [[http://magiccards.info/m10/en/8.html Divine Verdict]] and [[http://magiccards.info/10e/en/8.html Ballista Squad]], or using occasional mass destruction to wipe the slate clean equally. Read more about white [[http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mr57 here]].

* ApocalypseHow: Armageddon, Wrath Of God, Balance, Final Judgement. While such outright killing is generally outside White's philosophy, these effects are acceptable because they create order by clearing away all those messy living things.
** ApocalypseWow: Wrath Of God is one of the most iconic cards in Magic, partially because of its effect (Destroy all creatures. They can't be regenerated.) and partially because of its artwork (a giant white sun crashing into the earth and obliterating EVERYTHING).
* AbsoluteXenophobe: White can become this in theory. See Fantastic Racism and All The Other Reindeer below.
* AllTheOtherReindeer: White is the color of conformity, and doesn't care for those that are different unless they try to fit in.
* AwesomenessIsAForce: Shown on Awe Strike. Like Blue's Awesome Presence, it's a serious take on the idea of Pure Awesomeness.
* BlackAndWhiteInsanity: Why White characters sometimes go KnightTemplar. It's the colour that least recognises moral complexity.
* CastCalculus: Each color's role in the color pie can best be visualized by comparing it to cast dynamics of various sizes.
** In a RedOniBlueOni dynamic, White and Blue together form the Blue Oni.
** In a FreudianTrio dynamic, White and Blue together form the Superego.
** In a FourTemperamentEnsemble, White is Choleric, with shades of Melancholic.
** In a FiveManBand, White is The Leader.
* CombatMedic
* ElementalPowers
** DishingOutDirt: Shared with red and green. White's version uses dirt, sand, marble, or [[TakenForGranite petrification]].
** HealingHands: Shared with green.
** HolyHandGrenade
** LightEmUp
** ThePowerOfTheSun: Its symbol. Some cards use it literally.
*** StarPower: Occasionally uses the light of [other] stars.
** SoulPower: The LighterAndSofter variety.
* TheEvilsOfFreeWill: White believes that freedom leads only to actions in destruction and self-interest. Blue has this as a prominent theme and there are shades of it in Green.
* EvilTwin: With Black.
* FantasticRacism: White is the color that most often rewards the use of its own color, often flavored as white looking out for its own kind and being intolerant of differences.
* {{Flight}}: With blue.
** FeatheredFiend: Because of this, it is, after Blue, the colour with the most amount of birds. Villainous Aven like Kirtar from the ''Mirari Saga'' have so far been only White, and New Phyrexia's birds are also White.
* TheFettered: Comes with the territory of law and order.
* ForGreatJustice: White does occasionally single out targets instead of [[RocksFallEverybodyDies killing everyone]], but usually only against those who are guilty (for example, by dealing damage or getting into combat).
* TheFundamentalist: Along with the KnightTemplar, this is one of White's negative aspects. The flavor text on [[http://magiccards.info/10e/en/53.html True Believer]] exemplifies this aspect of White:
--> ''So great is his certainty that mere facts cannot shake it.''
* HumanoidAbomination: Opposed to Black's own [[EldritchAbomination eldritch things]], as part of their motif of opposition. Angels, especially in later settings like Zendikar and Bant, are portrayed as alien to mortal races and quite detached (being manifestations of pure White mana). Archons are essentially [[Literature/TheLordOfTheRings Nazgūl]] that are [[KnightTemplar extremist]] instead of immoral.
* IdealHero: When white is a hero, it's this.
** LightIsGood: Although lately its more [[KnightTemplar negative aspects]] have been more prevalent, in order to keep the balance with the number of protagonists/villains in other colours.
* KillEmAll: [[KnightTemplar Naturally]].
* KnightTemplar
* LightIsNotGood: While white is pretty consistent in regards to OrderVsChaos (Order, of course), it's fallen on different ends of the GoodVsEvil divide through ''Magic'''s history.
* MadeOfIron: See Stone Wall.
* MoralSociopathy: At its worst; it is always moral, but being an enemy of Red, the colour of emotions, means that, at its purest, it has no empathy. Indeed, some pure White creatures, like Angels, sometimes appear rather robotic, following their duties at the expense of everything else.
* MyRulesAreNotYourRules[=/=]ScrewTheRulesIMakeThem: White is the color of Law, so it likes there to be rules, but it has no problem applying its rule magic unevenly.
* ANaziByAnyOtherName: White, being the colour of order, can be this at its worst.
* TheNeedsOfTheMany
* NoCureForEvil: Averted with White characters that are evil, although curiously most White villains so far didn't have an explicit specialization in healing magic.
* OmnicidalManiac: The infamous [[http://wiki.mtgsalvation.com/article/Wrath_effect Wrath effect spells]], of which the vast majority are White. Several cards like Magus of the Disk show that this goes deep in White's idealogy as well; ultimate order is death, after all.
* OurAngelsAreDifferent: They are medium-sized to large flying creatures.
* TechnicalPacifist: White prefers to disable enemies non-lethally. [[KillEmAll Unless you really piss it off]].
* ThePowerOfFriendship: With Green and, sometimes, Red.
* {{Pride}}
* PurpleIsTheNewBlack: Inverted; some White cards have artwork that shows White mana spells as purple (most notable with the Zubera cycle of Kamigawa, where the [[http://magiccards.info/chk/en/45.html White aligned Zubera]] has purple mana orbs around it while the [[http://magiccards.info/chk/en/101.html Black aligned Zubera]] has [[{{Irony}} white]] ones). [[FridgeBrilliance Makes sense]] since violet light is the most intense light in the visible spectrum.
* RecurringElement: White's iconic creatures are Angels, and its characteristic creatures are Soldiers.
* RocksFallEverybodyDies: White prefers to delay any threat, but when it decides to kill something, then it kills ''everything''.
* RulesLawyer: White ''is'' the color of bureaucracy, so of course white has the most bureaucracy.
* StoneWall: White has a long history of tough creatures with low power.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Blue]]

Blue is associated with knowledge, illusion, and mental magic. Its specialties are [[AntiMagic countermagic]], drawing cards, and delaying your opponent by forcing them to replay or redraw the same cards, or skipping phases or whole turns. Because of its careful, analytical approach, blue is often reactive, and rarely rushes directly into the fray. Accordingly, its creatures tend to sacrifice brute force in favor of abilities like flying that allow them to gain an advantage in other ways. Because blue has traditionally had many of the most powerful cards, it has gained an unfavorable reputation in some circles, as satirized by [[http://cardboard-crack.com/tagged/blue this set of comic strips]]. Read more about blue [[http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mr84 here]].

* AboveGoodAndEvil: Being blue often involves ignoring conventional morality in pursuit of knowledge.
* AwesomenessIsAForce: Awesome Presence seems to display this.
* CastCalculus: Each color's role in the color pie can best be visualized by comparing it to cast dynamics of various sizes.
** In a RedOniBlueOni dynamic, Blue and White together form the Blue Oni.
** In a FreudianTrio dynamic, Blue and White together form the Superego.
** In a FourTemperamentEnsemble, Blue is strictly Melancholic.
** In a FiveManBand, Blue is The Smart Guy.
* ElementalPowers
** AnIcePerson: By way of HarmlessFreezing.
** BlowYouAway: Shared with green.
** MakingASplash
** PsychicPowers: Many of its effects are flavored with [[MindManipulation telepathy]] or [[MindOverMatter telekinesis]].
** TimeMaster: Blue has more powers with time than anyone.
* EvilGenius: A blue villain is generally this.
* EvilutionaryBiologist: Blue at its worst.
* {{Flight}}: With white.
* ForScience
* FragileSpeedster: Blue creatures, if they aren't a SquishyWizard or StoneWall, tend to be weaker than other creatures but have some sort of evasive advantage, such as birds, drakes or illusions.
* GadgeteerGenius
* KrakenAndLeviathan: Blue gets some efficient creatures at the high end of the scale, but it isn't known for its mana acceleration, and leviathans in particular typically come with very inconvenient disadvantages.
* LackOfEmpathy: The darker side of blue can be sociopathic; while other colors can at least grasp sadism or extremist insanity, Blue at its worst just doesn't give a damn about anyone.
* MasterOfIllusion: Some illusion creatures are unusually powerful, but have drawbacks to represent their unreality like returning themselves to your hand after each fight, or being sent to the graveyard if any spell or ability even ''targets'' one of them.
* MindRape: Blue's milling ability is often flavored as erasing memories.
* NoSell: Counterspell and its legacy. When a player's spell is countered, throwing the card away is a common response.
* TheMole: [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=15168 This]] [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=159749 combo]].
* RecurringElement: Blue's iconic creatures are Sphinxes, and its characteristic characters are Vedalken.
* MyRulesAreNotYourRules: Blue is the only color that can consistently interact with spells on the stack. It's a bit jarring to many players, as most interactions happen with permanents already on the battlefield.
* ScienceHero
* {{Sloth}}: In the sense of LackOfEmpathy.
* TheSociopath: At its worst.
* TheSpock
* TheSmartGuy
* SmugSnake: Blue villains tend to hit this ''way'' harder than other colors, from [[Literature/OdysseyCycle Ambassador Laquatus]] to [[Literature/KamigawaCycle the Soratami]] to [[Literature/RavnicaCycle Zomaj Hauc]]...
* TheUnfettered: Actually more so than any other color; even Black tends to have empathy (even if twisted into sadism), while Blue is completely divorced from such "petty" emotions.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Black]]

Black's goal is power, no matter the cost--black will do anything to win, even if it means sacrificing its own creatures or HitPoints to power its spells. Black specializes in death and decay; its power over death makes it excellent at both killing creatures and [[TheNecromancer raising them from the dead to fight again]]. It's also the best color at attacking the opponent's hand through MindRape-styled discard effects, and offers Faustian bargains of powerful creatures and effects that match or exceed other colors' specialties, if you don't mind paying for the difference with something other than mana. Learn more about black [[http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mr109 here]].

* AboveGoodAndEvil: Being black means abandoning morality in the pursuit of power.
* TheAntiNihilist: In contrast to the other colors, Black doesn't concern itself with changing the world for the better, but rather it encourages people to make the best out of their lives in a world that can't be improved.
* ApeShallNeverKillApe: A lot of black creature removal will destroy a creature, but only if it isn't black. Not that black actually cares about its own - it's just that black creatures are often impervious to the insanity, horror, and disease it uses to do its work.
* ByronicHero: What black may be when it steps into the light.
* BodyHorror: Anything with "[[CastFromHitpoints Pay X life]]..." in it, anything Yawgmoth does, a lot of the black auras.
* CastCalculus: Each color's role in the color pie can best be visualized by comparing it to cast dynamics of various sizes.
** In a RedOniBlueOni dynamic, Black sits in the middle; it finds the Red Oni too impulsive and the Blue Oni too hesitant.
** In a FreudianTrio dynamic, Black forms the ego.
** In a FourTemperamentEnsemble, Black is Phlegmatic.
** In a FiveManBand, Black is The Lancer.
* CastFromHitPoints: Every color gets some, but it's black's specialty.
* ColdBloodedTorture
* DarkIsNotEvil: While Black has many villains in its name, and is inherently ruthless, it has also some positive traits and a few characters to embody them.
* DealWithTheDevil: Yawgmoth's Bargain, Necropotence, Greed, Contract From Below, and so on.
* EldritchAbomination: Usually under the creature type "Horror" and "Nightmare".
* ElementalPowers
** ThePowerOfBlood
** CastingAShadow
** PoisonousPerson: Of the "assassin" variety.
** TheNecromancer
** PowerOfTheVoid: See the cards Damnation and Doom Blade.
** SoulPower: The DarkerAndEdgier variety.
* EquivalentExchange: Shown on many cards, in particular those like Sign In Blood.
* EvilCannotComprehendGood: An arguable example, but "personifying" Black in certain Wizards articles suggests that Black cannot honestly believe that anyone thinks differently than it does, defending its amorality with AtLeastIAdmitIt. White seems especially hypocritical to Black because Black is certain that nothing could ''really'' be that dedicated to altruism.
* EvilTwin: With White.
* FaceHeelTurn: If a coalition of different-color characters is present.
* {{Greed}} and {{Envy}}: Greed is in fact a card.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Black at its purest focuses on self-empowerment at the expense of all else.
* JackOfAllStats: While White and Green has the best creatures and Red and Blue has the best spells, Black is the most balanced color in both aspects, though this [[CastFromHitPoints also has its price]].
* MindRape: Any "discard" card or "cap" effect.
* NominalHero: Black may help you, if you make it worth its while.
* NoSell: Black is the color of death, corruption, and fear, so its abilities usually fail against other black creatures who are already dead or corrupt, or artifact creatures who were never alive to begin with.
* PowerAtAPrice: Black's specialty, whether it be discarding cards, paying life, or sacrificing creatures.
* PragmaticHero: When Black is heroic. Black is always pragmatic regardless.
* RecurringElement: Black's iconic creatures are Demons, and its characteristic creatures are Vampires.
* ReligionOfEvil: Many black cards, while not always [[DarkIsNotEvil evil]], certainly look the part.
* TheSacredDarkness: A stretch, considering that Black mana is all about corruption, but it is generally agreed that it is necessary for a natural plane to be stable (Alara could afford its absence in some shards due to the unique nature of the plane).
* SwampsAreEvil: Black draws power from the festering decay of swamplands. But again, see DarkIsNotEvil.
* TheUnfettered: As part of the opposite of white, where white establishes concepts of "right" and "wrong", black [[AboveGoodAndEvil rejects]] those notions in its quest for power.
* UriahGambit: "Sacrifice a creature" effects, along with creatures with disabilities that hurt you.
* WhatIsEvil: Black is the colour mostly inclined towards moral relativism.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Red]]

Red is the color of chaos, passion, and emotion. It's aligned with the elements of [[PlayingWithFire fire]], [[DishingOutDirt earth]], and [[ShockAndAwe lightning]], and it specializes in direct damage and the destruction of all things material. Red lives in the moment and rarely considers the future consequences of its actions; this theme is frequently shown through powerful but temporary advantages such as [[http://magiccards.info/10e/en/242.html Threaten]] and [[http://magiccards.info/m10/en/125.html Ball Lightning]], with creatures that aren't always quite controllable once they hit the field, and with excessive bursts of mana or effects that destroy your lands in return for immediate power. Red is designed to play aggressively and win quickly, and is in danger of stalling out if it doesn't maintain the initiative. Red reliance on spells that deal with fire and lightning have lead to the perception that red is not as diverse as the other colors, as satirized [[http://cardboard-crack.com/post/53895873415/direct-damage-spell-names here]]. Learn more about red [[http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mr133 here]].

* ApocalypseHow: Decree Of Annihilation, Disaster Radius.
* BeYourself: Red is the color of unbridled self-expression.
* BreathWeapon: "Firebreathing" is a common ability where you spend red mana to pump up a creature's power. Naturally, red dragons are the most fire-prone.
* CastCalculus: Each color's role in the color pie can best be visualized by comparing it to cast dynamics of various sizes.
** In a RedOniBlueOni dynamic, Red and Green together form the Red Oni.
** In a FreudianTrio dynamic, Red and Green together form the Id.
** In a FourTemperamentEnsemble, Red is Sanguine.
** In a FiveManBand, Red is The Chick.
* DiscardAndDraw: Red cards that allow the player to draw more cards tend to have the cost of discarding cards in the player's hand.
* DragonRider
* DontThinkFeel: Part of its opposition to blue. In fact, overthinking and second-guessing yourself can be a serious flaw when playing red.
* ElementalPowers: By far the most invested in them.
** AnIcePerson: For the purposes of [[KillItWithIce freezing things to death]].
** DishingOutDirt: Along with green and white. Red uses the "crushing rocks and earthquakes" variety.
** HavingABlast
** LightEmUp[=/=]FrickinLaserBeams: Although White has domain over light, some Red spells involve piercing the enemies with beams of light, most notably [[http://magiccards.info/cmd/en/116.html Cleansing Beam]].
** PlayingWithFire
** ThePowerOfBlood[=/=]BloodMagic: Used in various ways in flavour, though in the cards almost exclusively to deal damage or to control creatures (or both).
** MagmaMan
** MakeMeWannaShout
** MakingASplash: Very rarely, in the form of a [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=14653 torrential flood]].
** ShockAndAwe
** StarPower: Most notably in the infamous [[http://media.wizards.com/images/magic/tcg/products/cmd13/5Ig5mu73tz_EN.jpg Starstorm]]. Goes well with LightEmUp.
* EntropyAndChaosMagic: Being the color of chaos and random destruction.
* FireIsRed: Though, to be fair, as in most other spells, Red spells don't necessarily have the same color as the color itself, and some fire spell artwork has apropriate orange or gold flames.
* ForTheEvulz: Red doesn't tend to do plans, so at its worst it often produces motiveless evil. Red villains are more likely to be evil, destructive, or sadistic just because it's fun than black ones.
* GlassCannon: In contrast to White's stonewall tactics, Red creatures either have high power and low toughness or ways to buff only their power to make creatures this.
* GreatBallsOfFire: ''Blaze'' and ''Fireball'' are the best examples.
* HotBlooded
* InstantAwesomeJustAddDragons: WordOfGod is that dragons are the most popular creature type in the game, and each block ''will'' ensure red gets at least one, even in settings like Ravnica (where dragons are supposed to be extinct) or Innistrad (where dragons just don't fit with Gothic horror). On top of that, red's dragons get a "dragon discount": they're slightly cheaper than a red flying creature normally should be.
* KillItWithFire: Cards such as [[http://magiccards.info/ia/en/194.html Incinerate]], [[http://magiccards.info/be/en/142.html Disintegrate]], and [[http://magiccards.info/in/en/164.html Scorching Lava]] prevent the burnt creature from regenerating, representing the flavor of burning the body to prevent it from healing.
* LeeroyJenkins: Red has the majority of creatures with the "cannot block" and "attacks each turn if able" abilities, and a variety of other effects like [[http://magiccards.info/roe/en/157.html Lust for War]] that force creatures to charge recklessly into battle.
* {{Lust}} and {{Wrath}}
* TheMcCoy
* OurGoblinsAreDifferent: Every set brings a new take on goblins, though you can usually count on them being self-destructively insane little buggers.
* RecurringElement: Red's iconic creatures are Dragons, and its characteristic creatures are Goblins.
* RedOnesGoFaster: Red cards and decks tend to move quickly and are generally faster than the other colors.
* ScrewTheRulesImDoingWhatsRight: Red never respects laws. It becomes this when it's the good guy.
* StuffBlowingUp: ''[[http://gatherer.wizards.com/pages/card/details.aspx?name=Kaboom! Kaboom!]]''
* SuperSpeed: Follows from Red's emphasis on freedom. Seen on cards such as Burst Of Speed and Accelerate.
* ThePowerOfHate
* ThePowerOfLove: Love, like all emotions, is Red in nature. Unfortunately, given that love is nigh impossible to be mechanically manifested, such cases are exclusive to flavor.
* TheUnfettered: Red will feel what it wants to feel and act how it wants to act.
* ThirstyDesert: Especially in ''Arabian Nights''.
* WhenAllYouHaveIsAHammer: Red runs at two speeds: "hit it" and "hit it harder".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Green]]

Green magic represents [[GreenThumb nature]]. Thanks to its mastery of life and growth, Green is the best color at creating swarms of token creatures, and its creatures tend to be bigger than those of other colors for the same cost, especially at the higher end of the scale. Green also has the ability to boost the size of its creatures, both temporarily and permanently, and is the best color at generating extra mana in the long term, often by playing additional lands. It has become the second-best color at card drawing, representing a growth of the mind to match the body. Green magic is rarely subtle and often relies on brute force - while it's perfectly willing to destroy the opponent's artifacts, enchantments, and lands, Green preferred means of dealing with opposing creatures is to outmatch them in combat [[IncrediblyLamePun as nature intended]]. Learn more about green [[http://www.wizards.com/Magic/Magazine/Article.aspx?x=mtgcom/daily/mr43 here]].

* AntiAir: Many. Very many. Good examples are Hurricane and Giant Spider (it has Reach, which lets it block fliers without having flying). Green creature removals usually only attack flyers.
* AppealToTradition: Basically the jist of Green's rhetoric outside of "nature". Green is the colour most focused on the past, most focused on retaining the status quo, and as such it can get pretty damn obsessed over tradition, as many characters have learned the hard way.
* AntiCavalry: Appears on Trip Line. Antiquated by the static ability Horsemanship disappearing.
* AttackOfTheFiftyFootWhatever: One of green's trademarks is the absurdly large creature, whether large to begin with or magically pumped up that way.
* TheBeastMaster
* BigCreepyCrawlies: See Attack Of The 50-Foot Whatever. Green shares this with Black.
* CastCalculus: Each color's role in the color pie can best be visualized by comparing it to cast dynamics of various sizes.
** In a RedOniBlueOni dynamic, Green and Red together form the Red Oni.
** In a FreudianTrio dynamic, Green and Red together form the Id.
** In a FourTemperamentEnsemble, Green is Choleric, with shades of Sanguine.
** In a FiveManBand, Green is The Big Guy.
* CharlesAtlasSuperpower
* DontThinkFeel: Part of its opposition to blue, green strategies are often about pure smashing, with little in the way of trickery or manipulation.
* ElementalPowers
** DishingOutDirt: Used to create more lands, or [[ThatsNoMoon animate the ones it has]].
** BlowYouAway: Although air is technically Blue's domain, [[WindIsGreen Green wind spells]] are common. See AntiAir above.
** GreenThumb: Druids always have abilities that either generate mana or improve the use and number of your lands. Common green spells pull lands right out of your deck and into your hand or onto the field.
** HealingHands: Green shares the ability to gain life with White.
** PoisonousPerson: Delivered by all manner of venomous critters.
* EverythingTryingToKillYou: Green is the domain of dangerous, hostile places like forests and jungles.
* FertileFeet
* [[GaiasLament Gaea's Lament]]
* [[GaiasVengeance Gaea's Vengeance]]
* [[VillainousGlutton Gluttony]]
* HungryJungle
* InHarmonyWithNature: Many green healing and card-drawing spells are depicted this way.
* LuddWasRight
* MakeMyMonsterGrow: One of green's favorite abilities.
* MotherNature
* NatureHero
* NatureIsNotNice: There are many cards that reflect the lifegiving and nurturing facet of Mother Nature. There are also many cards that reflect Mother Nature's brutality.
* NoCureForEvil: Like in White, some Green characters with healing powers can be evil.
* RecurringElement: Green's iconic creatures are Hydras, and its characteristic creatures are Beasts.
* ScienceIsBad: And thus, Green gets a lot of anti-artifact spells.
* SuperStrength: Green has many terrifyingly large creatures, following from its emphasis on growth.
* ThePowerOfFriendship: With White and arguably, Red.
* TheSocialDarwinist: At its worst.
* TrainingFromHell: It's not unusual for green creatures to be permanently toughened up by getting hurt first.
* ThatsNoMoon: Green is in love with the idea of land animation.
[[/folder]]

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