Characters: Magic The Gathering Planeswalkers

Planeswalkers
The earliest version of Magic lore had characters who could travel between worlds if they were powerful enough. This was soon codified into the term "Planeswalker" (One who can walk from one plane to another) and turned into the main characters of the stories. There are now two types, split between "old" and "new", either before or after the Mending. The Mending was an event with the potential to destroy the entire multiverse. Every plane was at risk of being consumed by the Blind Eternities, an area of Limbo between planes.

Within the meta-sense, you, the player, are a Planeswalker, encountering others and fighting for superiority. The general problem is that, being a Reality Warper, fights tend to get caught up in the entire multiverse...

Pre-Mending
Regardless of whether it happened before or after the mending, the way in which a being becomes a Planeswalker is the same. Whenever a sentient being is born, there is a one in one million chance of it being born with "The Spark"—that is, the Planeswalker spark. And even then, the odds of that being triggering their ascension is also one in a million. The Spark is ignited typically in one of three ways—a near-death experience, situations of immeasurable psychological strain, or extremely deep meditation. These old-style Planeswalkers had powers comparable to most gods; they could travel to other realities with no more than a moment's concentration, they can take on any appearance they desire (though most choose to look the same as they did when they ascended), will not age or die of natural causes, no longer need to eat or sleep, and in a few cases, create their own artificial plane (and live there and practically be worshipped as gods).

    Planeswalkers: Pre-Mending 

Arzakon

A planeswalker trying to enter the world of Shandalar for its unique mana, Arzakon uses the five guilds from there, each of a different color of mana, to gain three "mana taps" to summon him. He's the final boss of the 1997 Microprose Card Battle Game.

  • Awesome but Impractical: A five-color deck? Granted, it's stacked with broken cards, but still...
    • It also contains literally hundreds of cards. Even though he has every one of the Power Nine, with so many cards he may never get the chance to use even one before you bring him down.
  • Big Bad: Of the Microprose game.
  • Deal with the Devil: He tricked five mages into casting a powerful spell they thought would give them control over Shandalar, but in reality gave him the ability to access the plane.
  • Horned Humanoid: Looks like a horned statue in his image, and the front cover of the Expansion Pack makes him look like a demon.
  • Rocks Fall Everybody Dies: He'll attack when his five minions are defeated.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: If you can't defeat him completely, he'll still be locked away. How long he stays sealed depends on how much damage you can deal to him.

Bo Levar

"I'd be happy to stop contradicting you, Urza, just as soon as you start being right."

Formerly known as Crucias, Bo Levar is a native of Yotia on Dominaria.

Commodore Guff

"It's the oldest trick in the book. And I ought to know—I wrote it."

  • Author Avatar: Uh...see for yourself. From Apocalypse:
    Madly, he erased. Madly, yes, for what editor erases so fervently the words an author has written? What editor allows his author to write a hundred thousand words only to erase ten thousand of them? Only an editor desperate to get history right.

    “Bother.”

    Commodore Guff crouched upon a gnarl of basalt and feverishly applied the massive eraser to the history of the Dominarian Apocalypse. There went a sentence about the death of Eladamri. Just after, Liin Sivi[sic] no longer died, for all the way through she had been paired to him as though she were his gimp leg. And what about this paragraph where Bo Levar lights a cigar in a swamp and is blown to smithereens? Guff didn’t even erase that bit, but crumpled up the whole page and threw it into the lava that seeped from a nearby crack. What else had to go to make this goddamned trilogy work out? How about the legal material, and the dedication and acknowledgments? After all, who gives a goat’s droppings for the editor of an epic? Commodore Guff hurled those pages aside and saw them catch fire. He threw out the teaser too. It had given away the destruction of Dominaria anyway, something that was completely undecided at this point.

    Commodore Guff turned his face from the ravaged book in his hand and looked skyward. “This would never have happened when I was in charge of continuity.”
    • Funnily enough, Word of God states that J. Robert King (author of Apocalypse) based him on one of Magic's other authors, Scott McGough. So he's technically an Author Avatar, just the wrong author.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: He nonchalantly acknowledges the upcoming deaths of all his comrades, and even knows that in the 'original' history, Yawgmoth wins and Dominaria is assimilated into Phyrexia. He only agrees to start erasing things when it's brought to his attention that Yawgmoth's victory would mean the destruction of his library.
  • Meta Guy: Was strangely aware of his status as a literary character.
  • No Fourth Wall: What Deadpool is to the Marvel Universe, Guff is to Magic.

Freyalise

"Life cannot be created and then abandoned. It must be nurtured and fed so that it may express its ripened might."

Read more about her here.

  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Her skin color changed to reflect her mood.
  • Boyish Short Hair: She preferred to keep her hair rather short.
  • The Chick: In a Closer to Earth sort of way.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: She never was much of a team player, but her desire to work with other planeswalkers really soured after the Invasion.
  • Disappointed In You: Had nothing but scorn for Radha's rejection of Skyshroud traditions to embrace her Keldon heritage.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Covering a magical eye.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: The way she "fixes" Dominaria was supposed to be one of the first infinite-mana combos. "Supposed" because the writer misunderstood one of the cards in the combo, Paralyze.
  • God Guise: Became worshipped as a deity by the elves of Llanowar and Fyndhorn after helping them survive Dominaria's global Ice Age (and given the power of a pre-mending Planeswalker it's not altogether incorrect to call her one). After the Invasion, the elves of Skyshroud join them in their worship.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: She's a half-elf from Storgard.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrificed herself to seal the Skyshroud time rift during the events of Time Spiral.
  • My Greatest Failure: She sees Radha as a failed attempt to raise a strong champion for Skyshroud, the denial of her last hope.
  • Playing with Fire: She was a pyromancer before ascending, a stark contrast to her green-aligned planeswalker role.
  • Power Floats: Preferred to float just above the ground as opposed to simply standing.

Jaya Ballard

"Some have said there is no subtlety to destruction. You know what? They're dead."

The Task Mage. She started her life as a street urchin until she stumbled upon Jodah, who took her under his wing. She didn't stay long, though, and went on to become a task mage (a term for Hired Guns). Her spark ignited after fighting a Demonic Possession by Mairsil The Pretender. She was also a figurehead of a monastery that Chandra, her future Expy, went to.

Jeska/Phage

"Even the threat of power has power."

Jeska first appeared in the Odyssey block storyline as Kamahl's sister. After suffering mortal wounds at the hands of her brother's Mirari-induced insanity, she was resurrected by the Cabal during the Onslaught storyline, gaining a new life as the fearsome Phage the Untouchable. The events of Legions caused her to fuse with Akroma and Zagorka to form Karona, the False God. When Karona was defeated, Jeska's spark ignited and she re-emerged as a planeswalker, leaving with Karn to travel the multiverse. She later returned in Future Sight to help seal the time rifts.

Karn

"Anger is fleeting; remorse is eternal."

A sentient silver golem created by Urza to help with time travel experiments, Karn eventually joined the crew of the Weatherlight. Upon Urza's death, Karn inherited the Mightstone and Weakstone, and integrating them into his body caused him to ascend as the first known artifact planeswalker. Read more about him here.

  • Actual Pacifist: He's depicted in the art of the Tempest edition of Pacifism. And if he participates in combat, he gets -4/+4, making him a 0/8 unless you've modified him in some way. Until the 'Invasion' cycle, he was such a staunch pacifist that Volrath tortured him by locking him in a flowstone room filled with goblins and then shifting the flowstone to make him crush them with his own weight. But during 'Invasion,' he realizes that remaining pacifist will indirectly harm to those he wishes to protect, leading him to become a Martial Pacifist.
    Karn: Enough! If I must kill the guilty to save the innocent, then I will kill!
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: The Phyrexians attempt to do this to him. And everything else. But since he was created to destroy Phyrexia, it's especially symbolic that they tried to do it to him.
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: While he was trapped in the center of New Phyrexia, slowly being corrupted.
  • Became Their Own Antithesis: He was very, very close to becoming the new Father of Machines.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Karn generally has a very mellow demeanor, but if given the reason, he can be incredibly strong. Case in point, his creature form couldn't deal much damage but could block, while the basic ability of his Planeswalker form (after he had picked up the resolve to save his plane) is to negate something's existence. This is one gentle giant you don't wanna mess with.
  • Big Good
  • Body Horror: The Phyrexians partially compleated him, fusing him with a "throne" made of what appears to be metallic bones.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: More and more over time as he remained within New Phyrexia.
  • Dueling Messiahs: One of the very few examples that managed to be both The Messiah and Dark Messiah at the same time to two different groups of people. Both the Phyrexians and the Mirran Resistance viewed him as their savior, with the former trying to corrupt him into becoming their leader and the latter trying desperately to save him first. The Mirrans win this battle, but lose the war. By the time they rescue Karn, it's too late to stop the Phyrexians.
  • Embarrassing Nickname: Before he got his name, the young and mischievous Teferi nicknamed him Arty Shovelhead.
  • Fallen Hero: With the Phyrexian invasion of Mirrodin, the Phyrexians adopted him as their new Father of Machines. Eventually, he managed to escape their clutches, but not before the plane was lost.
  • Final Boss: In Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012. And the deck he uses makes him a cheating bastard since the game doesn't use the Restricted/Banned list in use by everyone else.
    • His normal first turn has him playing a Darksteel Colossus by playing an Island, casting two Mox Sapphire artifacts and then cast Tinker to search for and play the Colossus.
  • Genocide Dilemma: He was created to destroy the Phyrexians, who (if you've followed this far) aren't very nice. He's also a pacifist.
  • Gentle Giant
  • A God I Am Not: Both the Mirrans and the Phyrexians worshipped him, though in very different ways. Though considering he did literally create their world, they're not entirely wrong to consider him a god.
  • Golem
  • Heart Drive: His heartstone, which originally belonged to Xantcha.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Karn's own heartstone drips with the Phyrexian Oil, which can infect entire planes if left unchecked. It happened with Karn's own plane of Argentum, turning it into Mirrodin and giving way for the rebirth of Phyrexia. It's implied he left this oil on every plane he traveled to, which is many.
  • Made of Silver
  • The Maker: Created Mirrodin (which he originally named Argentum) and populated it with the first generation of golems, who worshipped him as a god.
  • Merger of Souls: Multiple times, in multiple ways. When he was first created, he was given Xantcha's heartstone in order to grant him sentience. At the climax of the Phyrexian invasion, he assimilated all the pieces of the Legacy into his body to destroy Yawgmoth, causing him to absorb both Urza's and Glacian's souls into his body (it's a long story). Then, later still, Venser sacrificed himself by teleporting his soul into Karn's body to reactivate his spark and cleanse him of Phyrexian corruption. That's at least four souls floating around inside him.
  • Nice Guy
  • Non-Elemental: As a creature of artifice (golem), he's by nature outside the traditional color alignment.
  • Parental Neglect: Urza wasn't a very good father figure to him.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: When he became the Legacy Weapon.
  • Reluctant Warrior: Karn is a pacifist in a game about fighting. Poor guy didn't stand a chance.
  • Silver Has Mystic Powers: It's the only substance able to safely travel through time.
  • Time Master/Reset Button: His last ability is to restart the game, with everything he's exiled with his other abilities sent "back" to the beginning, on your side.

Leshrac

"Will not the mountains quake and hills melt at the coming of the darkness?"

  • Evil Gloating: He relishes speaking mockingly to everyone.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Behind Tevesh Szat and Lim-Dûl during the Ice Age, and behind the Weaver King during the time rift crisis...though he himself was acting at the behest of the Myojin of Night's Reach.
  • Manipulative Bastard: He got under Jeska's skin very easily and nudged her into doing his bidding.
  • Mega Manning: In Future Sight, he stole the black magic abilities from Nicol Bolas and Jeska/Phage.
  • Out-Gambitted: He thought he could destroy Nicol Bolas with the power of the Mask of Night's Reach during the events of Time Spiral, which was probably true... but Bolas had the real mask while Leshrac had a mere forgery, and the Elder Dragon decisively defeated the other Planeswalker and killed him to mend the Madaran time rift, ending his reign of terror..
  • Red Baron: Was widely known as "The Walker of Night", or just "Nightwalker".
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Twice. Once in the Shard of the Twelve Worlds, and once in Phyrexia.
  • Significant Anagram: The exact in-universe significance, if any, is unknown, but his name is an anagram of the from an Earthly perspective decidedly more ordinary Charles.
  • Squishy Wizard: Very much unlike Nicol Bolas, he was a terrible physical combatant, and had to resort to trickery and magic for the edge.
  • While Rome Burns: He believed the time rift crisis wouldn't be as widespread as Teferi claimed...and even if it were, all he cared about was killing Nicol Bolas and stealing the rank of top planeswalker for however long he could keep it.

Liliana Vess

"When you find yourself teetering on the edge of oblivion, mine will be the hands taking pleasure in giving you the final push."

Liliana Vess is a black-aligned planeswalker whose specialty is necromancy. She has several long-running debts with demons after a few bargains she made. Read more about her here.

Lord Windgrace

"Phyrexia is an unforgiving place, and I am an angry lord in an unforgiving mood."

  • Cat Folk: A panther warrior from Urborg.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He was a black, scary-looking panther warrior with a ferocious temper and destructive spells, but also thoroughly on the side of good.
  • Genius Loci: It is implied that his spirit fused with Urborg itself and he still watches over it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrificed himself to stop the Urborg temporal rift and stop a Phyrexian invasion through time, but his spirit remains to guard his homeland.
  • Light 'em Up: Control over light for both protective and destructive purposes was a signature ability of his.
  • Offhand Backhand: As shown by the image on the right, he could do this with magic, even.
  • Panthera Awesome: The only known feline Planeswalker of the old kind, and with some truly powerful magic at his disposal he was no mere kitten.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite his hatred for all artifice, he goes easy on Venser despite the poor guy's adaptation of Phyrexian relics into his machines because he sees Venser as more misguided than actively malicious. He also eventually listens to Teferi's warnings, though he had him at arm's length for a long time.
  • Science Is Bad: Had a special hatred for anything even remotely related to artfacts.

Nahiri

"This is your world. This stone, this earth, is yours to fight for. If you don't think you can rely on us, then don't."

A kor Planeswalker from the plane of Zendikar who aided fellow Planeswalkers Sorin and Ugin in sealing away the Eldrazi within her homeworld millennia ago. When Sorin returned 6000 years later to check on the weakening seal Nahiri was nowhere to be found, having vanished without a trace long ago. Turns out, she remained on Zendikar as a guardian of the Eldrazi prison and eventually cocooned herself below the Eye of Ugin. Read all about her here, here, and here.

  • Action Girl
  • Dishing Out Dirt: Appearently her main form of magic, being a lithomancer. She can manipulate rocks, which in her story is used to create the hedrons - a mean feat that took 40 years -, bury Eldrazi spawn, and...
    • Extra Ore Dinary: Can extract, refine, smelt, and forge metal into elaborate and fully-functional equipment with nothing but her own two hands.
    • Magma Man: She is capable of melting rock, which she normally uses in order to forge weapons.
  • Freudian Trio: Between herself (Id), Sorin (Superego) and Ugin (Ego).
    • The Heart: Nahiri lived, loved and lost among her people for centuries. While her own immortality made her survive all her friends and lovers, save Ugin and Sorin, which grated on her over time, Nahiri never lost her driving optimism.
    • The McCoy
  • Heroic Albino: Not actually albino, as all kor share the same pale coloration, but she fits the trope.
  • Honor Before Reason: In the story linked above, she insists on staying to protect the survivors even though they have no chance of survival against the Eldrazi.
  • Hope Bringer: ... And tries to inspire them to have courage, confusing and annoying Sorin.
    "Any hope is better than none. Always."
  • The Paragon: Read the caption of her picture.
  • Protectorate: Toward her homeworld of Zendikar, possibly in part out of guilt at agreeing to imprison the Eldrazi there.
  • Red Baron: Was known simply as 'the Lithomancer' before her reveal. Turns out it's also her title.
  • Tailor-Made Prison: She did all the grunt work constructing the elaborate prison system trapping the Eldrazi on Zendikar.
  • Talk to the Fist: Does not let annoying vampire cultists finish half a sentence when she needs to focus.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: She, Sorin and Ugin don't always see eye to eye, but all three are fully aware that only by working together do they stand a chance against the Eldrazi.
  • Ultimate Blacksmith: She takes her race's love for crafting and cranks it Up to Eleven. The millions of hedrons that cover Zendikar? She made all of them.
    • Terrain Sculpting: The powerful magic in the hedrons creates the weird gravitational effects that make Zendikar possible. She completely changed the landscape of the entire plane.
  • Unwanted False Faith: Taught the fledgling races of Zendikar about the threat of the Eldrazi, a message that got muddled over time and cast her as their servant instead. Nahiri is not pleased by this development, and wrecks every trace of said religion she can find.
  • Vocal Dissonance: After spending centuries in meditation, Nahiri is noted to have have a voice akin to the "crunch of gravel".
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: Sometimes she resents her immortality.
  • Wrench Wench

Nicol Bolas

"There is no greater folly than standing against me."

Nicol Bolas is the oldest—and perhaps the most powerful—planeswalker in the multiverse. He first appeared in the Legends cycle, where he battled Tetsuo Umezawa (a descendent of the Kamigawa block's protagonist, Toshiro Umezawa) for control of Madara. He reappeared in the Time Spiral block for a pair of epic planeswalker duels against Teferi and Leshrac, and then again to serve as an antagonist in the Shards of Alara block. He's been manipulating Magic's storyline from behind the scenes ever since. Read more about him here.

  • Above Good and Evil: He cares not for "pathetic moralizing", and views those who condemn him as a villain as seeing weakness as a virtue.
    Bolas: What they call villainy is no more than the will to win by any means available. I make no apologies.
  • Agony Beam: His touch causes immense physical and psychological trauma.
  • The Arch Mage: He's an extremely powerful wizard even by planeswalker standards.
  • Back from the Dead: Twice — first resurrecting himself from his death at the hands of Tetsuo Umezawa, then restoring himself to full strength during the Conflux.
  • Bad Boss: Has a history of abusing his minions. See Sarkhan and Tezzeret below.
    Nicol Bolas doesn't distinguish between servants and victims.
  • Badass Boast: He's very fond of making impressive evil statements, practically every time he's quoted in the flavor text of a card it's an example. His entire encounter with Ajani at the end of Alara Unbroken is basically a long boast. Trouble is, he really is that good. Best summarized by this quote: "I've survived more apocalypses than you've had chest colds."
  • The Bad Guy Wins: The stories of Shards of Alara and Zendikar are both cases of Bolas's plans coming to fruition. He encounters some hiccups along the way, but ultimately achieves his goals.
  • Big Bad: Arguably Magic's premier force of evil with Yawgmoth out of the picture. He certainly sees himself this way, though.
  • Breakout Villain: At first, Nicol Bolas was just one part of a cycle of Elder Dragons. He's the only one who most people pay attention to nowadays.
  • Brought Down to Normal / How the Mighty Have Fallen: The Mending brought him down from the godlike power of the old Planeswalkers to the relatively insignificant status of the new order, but his schemes soon saw him regain his former glory.
  • The Chessmaster: His defining characteristic. His schemes span countless centuries and numerous planes of existence.
  • Dispense With The Pleasantries: Really doesn't care for people wasting his time.
    Tezzeret: You do us great honor with your presence. It is my hope, Nicol Bolas, that together we can come to a mutually beneficial—
    Nicol Bolas: Shut up. I hate you, artificer, and I find rare cause to bother hating anyone anymore. The only reason I’m not currently picking your spine out from between my teeth is because you were smart enough to arrange these wards ahead of time. More to the point, I know full well you feel the same about me, no matter how you choose to doll up your words and trot them out like perfumed trollops. So perhaps we can save the pleasantries for those who might actually care about them, and simply tell me what you propose?
  • The Dreaded: Prepared or not, practically every planeswalker ever does an Oh, Crap when he deigns to appear in person.
    • This extends to even the great powers of planes he's never even been to. On Theros, the god Kruphix knows everything that anybody in Theros knows as part of his divine nature, which means that he knows everything that a visiting Planeswalker does as soon as they planeswalk there. And not only does he fear what might happen if Bolas should come to Theros, he even admits that Bolas is unfathomably ancient and powerful compared to him. This from the the oldest and most powerful of the entire pantheon.
  • Evil Genius: His is without a doubt one of the most brilliant minds in the Multiverse (probably even the most brilliant), and he's not using any of his brain cells for good.
  • Evil Overlord: At several points in the history of the Multiverse the dragon has been known to rule empires, such as his stint as Emperor of Madara.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Most likely the most powerful example to ever live. There's seemingly no end to his evil or his sorcerous might.
  • Evil Is Petty: The first thing Bolas does when he's freed from the Meditation Realm is hunt down anyone who was descended from the man that put him there. And probably anyone they ever knew or loved for that matter. And their pets.
  • God Emperor: Ruled over the empire of Madara as a god before being sealed away in the Meditation Realm for thousands of years.
  • Hero Killer: He's the reason Ugin is out of the picture at the moment.
  • Just Toying with Them: It'd be easier to count the fights Bolas has been in where he wasn't toying with his opponent. Exemplified in his "confrontation" with Jace Beleren and Tezzeret, where he proves fully capable of engaging with Tezzeret in a complex negotiation, idly chatting with Jace Beleren without giving any outward sign that he's doing anything but speaking with Tezzeret, has managed to move in and conceal an entire army without either Tezzeret or Jace becoming aware of it, and then, when Bolas is done with his idle chatting, he overwhelms Jace's best mental defense without even trying. That Jace could hold him off like that for less than a second is described as a greater feat than Jace will ever understand.
    His body rigid, as though he'd long since succumbed to the blizzard's touch, Jace hurled the entire force of his will into a mental lunge. His mind screamed into the ice, and nobody heard. Like a closing fist, he snapped shut the grid of thought, trying to block Bolas before he—Oh, dear Heaven! Jace's mind quailed before the greatest power he had ever felt. The innermost depths of Alhammarret's psyche, the very core of the wizard's being, had been nothing, a gentle springtime gust to the roaring hurricane that was this single tendril of the dragon's mind.
  • Last of His Kind: Bolas is the last elder dragon known to exist in the entire multiverse. Most of the others were wiped out in a civil war long, long ago.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Enjoys using others as puppets.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Manipulates everyone he can all the time, and really, he's just a bastard all around.
  • Mind Rape: Standard attacks for him. It comes with the mastery over blue and black magic.
    • Even as a regular old pre-planeswalker creature, if he hits you, you lose every card in your hand. That's basically the in-game equivalent.
  • Multiversal Conqueror: Nothing less than absolute dominion over all planes of existence is his end goal.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Supposedly he has so many titles he doesn't even care about them anymore, most notably The Tyrant of Worlds.
    • Jace Beleren comes up with a few good names as well, such as the Eldest Planeswalker and the Forever Serpent.
  • No Fourth Wall: Once took over a column on the official website.
  • Not Cheating Unless You Get Caught: He considers himself the only one who can get away with whatever he wants forever. Of course, he'll also point out that he does not play games.
  • Number of the Beast: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 states that he is 60 feet long, 60 feet wide, and weighs 60 tonnes.
  • Numerological Motif: His final ability does seven damage to a player, then makes that player sacrifice seven permanents and discard seven cards.
  • Olympus Mons: The original five Elder Dragons are the ancestors of all dragons, with Bolas himself as the far greatest among them. And you, as a planeswalker, can summon him both as a creature and as a planeswalker ally.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Immortal, supremely powerful, masterfully manipulative wizards bent on total omnipotence.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Bolas subscribes to this and in his "On Winning" article advises others to do the same.
    • Text book example is his reason for being against cheating within the context of a game. If you win by cheating and don't get caught, you won. If you win without cheating, you won. There is no difference. However, if you get caught cheating, you lost and now you are likely denied any future chance to make up for the defeat.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: He was trapped in the Meditation Realm for thousands of years before escaping in Time Spiral block ...
  • Slept Through the Apocalypse: ... But by that time Dominaria was a post-apocalyptic wasteland due to the Phyrexian invasion.
  • The Social Darwinist: He's extremely fond of the idea that the strong should dominate the weak. And in Bolas's mind (and reality most of the time), he's the strong and everyone else is the weak.
    Bolas: Do the innocent pay for the crimes of the guilty? Of course they do. That's the fate of the weak.
  • Sorcerous Overlord: His vast array of magic ensures his dominion over his servants.
  • Time Abyss: The oldest Planeswalker in existence.
  • Xanatos Gambit: In the end, all schemes lead to victory for Bolas. You don't survive for millennia without being an expert manipulator.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: His favorite game, made easy by having such a tremendous intellect.
  • Your Size May Vary: Exactly how big he is depends on the artist. Possibly him changing size depending on what's the easiest for him to fit in a location.

Ob Nixilis

"Conquering your first world is the hardest..."
Introduced in Zendikar as a demon who lost his planeswalker spark, Ob Nixilis was originally a human tyrant engaged with a neverending war with the people of his homeworld. He ultimately ended the war, and brought "peace" as it were, by offering the blood of two of his loyal soldiers to summon a demon. The demon wiped out all life from his world except for Ob Nixilis. Despot with no one to rule over, his spark ignited, showing him infinite worlds to conquer. Unfortunately, conquering the multiverse isn't easy. A failure led him to seek out the power of the Chain Veil, which instead cursed him with the body of a demon. He sought out the boundless mana of Zendikar to cure him of his curse, but an unfortunate run in with Nahiri left his planeswalker spark sealed away. However, the hedron that was sealing his spark has been removed from his skull, and his spark has been recuperating. He is ready to take out his revenge on the world that trapped him for so many centuries.

Serra

"Let Phyrexia breed evil in the darkness; my holy light will reveal its taint."

  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: The faith formed around her was strongly inspired by Christianity, design-wise. Especially evident in earlier sets like Homelands.
  • Crystal Spires and Togas: Her Realm's aesthetic is this in a Fluffy Cloud Heaven.
  • Floating Continent: Throughout her Realm.
  • Fluffy Cloud Heaven: Her Realm is the Magic multiverse's clearest example of this kind of dimension.
  • God Guise: Like some other Planeswalkers she inspired a religion among the mortals.
  • Have You Seen My God?: She hasn't been seen since Urza's first visit to her realm. The second time he shows up, Archangel Radiant is running things in her absence. She did it again to her worshippers on Ulgrotha, except this time she became suicidal and got herself killed.
  • Knight Templar: Displayed a rather zealous attitude much of the time.
  • Light 'em Up: Light was her favored element.
    "Follow the light. In its absence, follow her." (2012 Core Set version of Serra Angel)
  • Light Is Good: All in all, Serra was a great force of good.
  • The Mourning After: When her husband Feroz died in a freak lab accident, she lost all will to live.
  • Underboobs / Bare Your Midriff: Her signature look gave a very generous view of most of her torso, including her Action Girl abs.

Sorin Markov

"Death not for survival but for vanity and pleasure? This is the decadence I sought to curb."

Sorin Markov is a black-aligned vampire planeswalker who specializes in Blood Magic. He was one of the three planeswalkers who created the seal to trap the Eldrazi in Zendikar. He first appeared in the Zendikar block as a protagonist, working (grudgingly) with Nissa Revane to try and re-seal the Eldrazi in the Eye of Ugin. He hails from Innistrad, and is a member of the Markov vampire family, although estranged. In the Innistrad block story, he returns to his home-plane to find it ravaged due to the absence of Avacyn, Innistrad's guardian angel (whom he created). Returns in Khans of Tarkir where he comes to the plane in search of Ugin. Read more about him here.

  • The Ageless: Innistradi vampires are not undead, merely ageless. This was initiated by Sorin's grandfather, Edgar, who wanted to live forever, and thus made a pact with the demon Shilgengar and created Innistrad's vampires.
  • Anti-Hero
  • Big Good: His schemes and powerful magics have been instrumental in maintaining the (relative) peace and harmony on two planes we've seen so far:
    • He worked together with two other planeswalkers to trap the Eldrazi in Zendikar, and even returned there to reinforce the seal when he found out that it had weakened.
    • He set up a Balance Between Good and Evil in Innistrad at the cost of being forever hated by his vampire kin, including his own grandfather.
  • Blood Magic
  • Cruel to Be Kind: Created Avacyn to prevent the vampires of Innistrad from eating themselves to death. Even though Avacyn gives humanity the strength to kill the vampires,it really is for their own good.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He is scheming, paranoid, and eats people to survive, but he's essentially a Big Good. This is summed up in a quote of his from Day of Judgment:
    "I have seen planes leveled and all life rendered to dust. It brought no pleasure, even to a heart dark as mine."
  • Deadpan Snarker: Being functionally immortal will do that to you.
  • Defector from Decadence: He despises the other vampires of Innistrad for their short-sighted wastefulness.
    "Death not for survival but for vanity and pleasure? This is the decadence I sought to curb."
  • Despair Event Horizon: He loses hope to reseal the Eldrazi after discovering that Ugin has died. Sarkhan's altering of the timeline stops him from hitting this in the new present.
  • Freudian Trio: Between Nahiri (Id), himself (Superego) and Ugin (Ego).
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: He's seriously flawed, but he does care about the inhabitants of other planes at heart.
    • It's worth noting that he seems to care about others only on a population-level. He saved uncountable billions of lives by sealing the Eldrazi away, but has no problem with killing and eating people - essentially the same thing the Eldrazi do to entire planes.
  • Good Is Not Nice: He might be one of the only Big Goods in this setting, but don't let that fool you. You do NOT want to piss Sorin off.
    Flavor text for Mortify: Many who cross Sorin's path come down with a sudden and fatal case of being-in-the-way-of-a-millennia-old-vampire.
  • The Hedonist: When he doesn't have any important matters to deal with, he usually just seeks pleasure and excitement. This is apparently a trait of Innistrad vampires.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather
  • I Hate You Vampire Granddad: Possibly, as he was traumatized by being turned into a vampire by his granddad, not to mention that he has yet to be permitted to return to the Markov Manor.
  • Magic Knight: That sword he has isn't just for show.
  • Mind Control: Sorin's ultimate ability, with or without necromancy.
  • Mook Maker: Some of his card incarnations can recruit vampires under his service.
  • Noble Demon
  • Only Sane Man: It certainly seems that way. Did none of the other vampires of Innistrad think about what they were doing? Not to mention Nissa ruining everything on Zendikar ...
  • Our Vampires Are Different: Notably, Innistradi vampires aren't undead. They're the product of a curse placed on Sorin's grandfather millennia ago due to a Deal with the Devil.
  • Painful Transformation: Being turned into Innistrad's second vampire was so painful his spark ignited.
  • People Puppets: Can control other people by manipulating the blood in their bodies, bloodbender-style.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: What he's trying to do on Tarkir. His goal is to reseal the plane-devouring Eldrazi. He successfully wakes Ugin from his slumber in the hedrons, but Nahiri is still nowhere to be found.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Sorin is the one of the oldest Planeswalkers in existence, with Nicol Bolas and Ugin being the only Planeswalkers known to be older than him. You wouldn't know it looking at his youthful appearance, though.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After Nissa screws up his plan to reseal the Eldrazi in Zendikar, he breaks his alliance with her and the elves, and leaves the realm to its doom.
  • The Snark Knight
  • Super Strength: Innistrad vampires have physical strength roughly double that of an equivalent human.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: He, Nahiri and Ugin don't always see eye to eye, but all three are fully aware that only by working together do they stand a chance against the Eldrazi.
  • White Sheep: He hates his kin for being murderous, over-indulgent vampires, while they in turn hate him for creating Avacyn.
  • Why Did It Have To Be Heights?

Taysir of Rabiah

"How terrible to wander wishing only to escape oneself."

  • The Chosen One: On Rabiah, at least.
  • Cool Old Guy: Lived to the ripe old age of 95.
  • Fusion Dance: A Power Booster example. He originally had five alternate universe counterparts, one for each colour of mana, and became a planeswalker when his Black self pulled this off with all the rest.
  • Get a Hold of Yourself Man: Attempts this on Urza after Urza betrays the Nine Titans and turns to Yawgmoth. In response, Urza kills Taysir in self-defense.
  • Heel-Face Revolving Door: Back and forth and back and forth... To begin with, his black self was the murderous henchman of an evil wizard. After fusing with the personality and memories of his first alternate-universe-self victim, he had a Heel-Face Turn and fused more peacefully with the others only to save them from said wizard. After centuries as an immortal, he slowly became a total Jerkass and then a violent villain. After dying and going through Anaba Minotaur purgatory, he came back as a good guy.
  • Minor Major Character: Canonically, he was briefly the most powerful Planeswalker in the multiverse until Urza ascended, due to having five sparks instead of one, and even then he was quite powerful. Most of his time in the limelight is in the time before the Weatherlight saga, where Urza doesn't figure into things much at all, and afterwards he barely even gets mentioned. He comes back for the Invasion block, only to get killed.
  • Papa Wolf: His aforementioned attacking of Urza was also in part caused by the fact that Urza's recruitment of Tevesh Szat led to his adoptive daughter being killed.
  • The Red Mage: One of the few Planeswalkers to master all five colours, due to the circumstances of his ascension.

Teferi

"We define the boundaries of reality; they don't define us."

A blue-aligned planeswalker from Zhalfir specializing in time magic and phasing. The events of Time Spiral caused him to lose his planeswalker spark, making him mortal again. Read more about him here.

  • Bald Black Leader Guy: Dark-skinned and lacking hair, his role as a great leader later in life propelled him into this trope.
  • Court Mage: To the court of Zhalfir, specifically.
  • Complexity Addiction: Being a blue mage, he just unconsciously gravitates towards manipulative and calculated acts, which instill no mean amount of exasperation in his companions during the time rift crisis.
  • Delinquents: He apparently was one at the Academy, but he's since grown out of it.
  • Depower: He gave up his Planeswalker spark and became a mortal (but still very powerful) wizard in Time Spiral so that he could close the time rift over Shiv.
  • Fish Out of Temporal Water: Happened to him not once, not twice, but three times! When he was a student at the Tolarian Academy he was trapped in a slow-time bubble, aging only minutes for the hundreds of years that passed outside. Later he accidentally phased the island with his workshop into an alternate timestream, returning an unspecified amount of time later to discover Jamuraa had broken down into warfare in his absence. The third time he purposefully phased out all of Zhalfir and Shiv to protect them from the Phyrexian invasion, and when he returned found Dominaria was a wasteland.
  • Former Teen Rebel: When we first meet Teferi in Mirage block, he's a mature planeswalker and master of temporal magic. Then we see him Urza's Saga as a young student and discover that he was Bratty Half-Pint.
  • Heroic BSOD: He gets two during the time rift crisis: first, when he loses his spark closing the Shivan rift, and second when Jeska unwittingly consigns Zhalfir to oblivion.
  • Heroic Neutral: He's definitely heroic, but more concerned with protecting his homeland than with the rest of Dominaria.
    • Opt Out: He chooses to remove himself and Zhalfir from the timestream completely rather than face the disaster he knew was about to occur.
    • Neutral No Longer: During the events of Time Spiral he realizes how short-sighted his perspective had been and devotes himself to saving Dominaria, even going so far as to sacrifice his spark to do it.
  • The Lancer: To Urza, kind of.
  • Large Ham: As a planeswalker, his playfulness manifests in making everything he says and does unnecessarily impressive.
  • Late to the Tragedy: He phases out his homeland for several centuries, and returns long after Dominaria has been devastated by the Phyrexian invasion.
  • Mass Teleportation: His specialty. He's so good at it, in fact, that he's able to teleport entire continents!
  • The Nicknamer: As a student, he used to call Karn "Artie Shovelhead". Karn was not amused.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure
  • Slept Through the Apocalypse: Well, he was in temporal stasis through the apocalypse, anyway.
  • Time Master: And one powerful enough to warp two countries into an alternate timeline, no less.
  • Trickster Archetype: Phasing in many ways resembles this.
  • Tyke Bomb: Since he was noticed to have great magical potential as a child, he was trained to fight back against the Phyrexians at Urza's Tolarian Academy.
  • Year Outside, Hour Inside: The effect of the slow-time bubble he was trapped in after the accident at the Tolarian Academy.

Tevesh Szat

You pray to Freyalise, but she cannot hear your pleas. It is Tevesh Szat who will claim your soul.

Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

"The Multiverse is boundless, but its contents are finite. To believe otherwise is to believe that nothing matters at all. And when you are as old as I am, you will understand that nihilism is an indulgence you cannot afford."

Ugin is ancient, perhaps even older than Nicol Bolas himself, and extremely powerful. His long life and power have caused him to gain an interesting view on the multiverse, transcending the five colors of magic completely to become a colorless planeswalker. He helped Nahiri and Sorin trap the Eldrazi on Zendikar, then vanished for thousands of years.

And now the Eldrazi are back.

Read more about him here.

  • The Arch Mage: Often considered to be an extremely powerful and knowledgeable planeswalker. During his fight against Nicol Bolas Ugin was able to gain the advantage, and just may have won were it not for Yasova's trap.
  • Arch-Nemesis: Nicol Bolas. Both ancient, extremely powerful Elder Dragons.
    • Also the Eldrazi. Both are colorless, godlike beings.
  • Berserk Button: Sarkhan explains that he was Bolas's pawn for a time, which immediately causes Ugin to put him in a magical vicegrip.
  • Big Good: Polar opposite of Nicol Bolas. He tries to help the multiverse, such as fighting the Eldrazi Titans with Sorin Markov and Nahiri.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Made a brief appearance at the end of "How Many Eyes?", back in 2007. It would take eight years for him to get his own card.
  • Faux Flame: He breathes invisible fire called ghostflame.
  • Fisher King: The well-being of Tarkir somehow seems to be inextricably tied to his.
  • Foil: Again, to Bolas. Even the abilities on their cards are near opposite of each other.
  • Freudian Trio: Between Nahiri (Id), Sorin (Superego) and himself (Ego).
  • Guardian of the Multiverse: Unlike Nicol Bolas, who has spent millennia building his power to take over the multiverse, Ugin has been attempting to safeguard the Balance Between Good and Evil. He even went out of his way to seal the Eldrazi instead of killing them outright, because they were still an important part of the Multiverse.
  • Hero on Hiatus: Didn't show up to help Sorin seal the Eldrazi again, because Nicol Bolas killed him. After Sarkhan changed the timeline, his hiatus was due to a 1000-year long power-nap to recuperate from the beatdown Bolas handed him.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: During his fight with Bolas, he summoned Tarkir's dragons to fight for him. He didn't expect that Yasova, who was working for Bolas, had prepared a mind control spell to hijack those dragons to attack him instead, spelling his demise.
  • Last of His Kind: His death caused the dragonstorms on Tarkir to cease, ending the dragons forever. Well, at least until Sarkhan Vol journeyed to his tomb...
  • Living Memory / Only Mostly Dead / Soul Fragment: What he seems to have become after being killed by Nicol Bolas.
  • Non-Elemental: The second colorless planeswalker to be printed, after Karn.
  • Numerological Motif: His ultimate ability lets you draw seven cards, gain seven life and put seven permanents onto the battlefield.
  • Reality Warper: His specialty is the transmutation of matter into energy and vice-versa. This has ... very powerful applications.
  • Time Abyss: Much like Nicol Bolas, his age has given him a unique perspective on things, most notably allowing him to transcend color completely.

Urza

"You can build a perfect machine out of imperfect parts."

One of the oldest and most powerful planeswalkers in the multiverse, the artificer Urza was first seen as a mortal in the Antiquities expansion, where he fought a bitter war against his fellow artificer and brother, Mishra. The disastrous war eventually led to the destruction of most of the continent, Mishra's death, Urza's ascension (after detonating the Golgothian Sylex, annihilating most of a continent and starting a millennia-long ice age), and the release of the lock that was keeping Phyrexia sealed away from Dominaria.

Urza, recognizing the threat of Phyrexia and blaming them for the corruption and death of his brother, began a crusade to purge them from the multiverse. His campaign spanned millennia, eventually culminating in the Weatherlight saga and the Dominarian Apocalypse.

He eventually died, victorious at last, at the end of Apocalypse.

  • Anti-Hero: He causes multiple cataclysmic magical disasters that completely destroy major landmasses, creates a eugenics program to breed super-soldiers, and is an overall Manipulative Bastard who gets regular What the Hell, Hero? moments. If Yawgmoth hadn't been set as the villain from the beginning, he could be a Villain Protagonist.
    • To be fair, He has had a very troubled past.
  • Arch-Nemesis: First Mishra, and then Yawgmoth.
  • Badass Grandpa
  • Big Good: In the sense of leading the good guys, at least. Urza was not a nice man.
  • Blind Seer: Used as a disguise.
  • Byronic Hero
  • Cain and Abel: The conflict with his brother Mishra got a little out of hand.
  • The Chessmaster: Combine this with his Good Is Not Nice traits seen below, most of his gambits are only "good" because they're being used to fight Phyrexia.
  • Face-Heel Turn: Zig-Zagged. He betrays his fellow planeswalkers and gives in to Yawgmoth once he has reached Phyrexia, but when he loses his head he snaps out of it.
  • Gadgeteer Genius
  • Glass Eye: He has a red powerstone for one eye, and a green one for the other. Both are extremely powerful artifacts called the Mightstone and Weakstone, respectively, and are actually two halves of an even more powerful artifact.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: Learning what Phyrexia did to his brother earned them his eternal hatred and had an extremely negative effect on his mental state.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Gets worse as he gets older. It reaches its peak when he doesn't tell his longtime partner and friend Barrin that his daughter is dying of Phyrexian plague. It's after that point, when Barrin kills himself, that Urza starts to really pick up the pace.
  • He Who Fights Monsters:
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Gerrard, the warrior he has bred to fight Yawgmoth, beheads him in the Phyrexian Arena. Somewhat of an aversion, though, because it was Gerrard beheading him that snapped him out of Yawgmoth's influence.
  • Insufferable Genius: Very smart, and also a dick about it. His belief that he always knows what ought to be done is one of his biggest flaws. What makes it worse is that he's almost always right.
  • Losing Your Head: His planeswalker powers mean that he can be beheaded and survive. His disembodied head can later be spotted relaxing in a hot tub in the non-canonical Unhinged expansion.
  • Luke Nounverber: He's occasionally referred to as "Urza Planeswalker." This crosses over with Species Surname when you take into consideration that before the Mending, "Planeswalker" was less of a job description and more of an actual race.
  • Mad Scientist
  • Manipulative Bastard: In the slightly good kind of way.
  • Nice Hat: Urza's pope hat.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: A poster boy.
  • Not So Different: From Yawgmoth, after all.
  • Numerological Motif: Major artifacts associated with Urza tend to cost exactly seven mana. He also has a set of lands (Urza's Tower, Power Plant, and Mine) that when together on the battlefield will produce exactly seven mana by tapping the three. This is, of course, not a coincidence.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Gerrard uses his severed head as a weapon. He can't regenerate his body because Gerrard used a soul-killing weapon to behead him, but he can still talk and use his rather powerful eye-lasers.
  • Set Bonus: Possibly the first example in a trading card game, the three Urza lands. Separately, they each give one mana. Together, they give seven mana. Add on an Urza's Factory and, for seven mana, you can put tokens into play. Add on his brother's factory and you can make those tokens bigger.
  • The Social Darwinist
  • The Unfettered: Nothing will stop him from triumphing over Phyrexia - certainly not the welfare of Dominaria.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Downplayed. He has generally gotten less and less insane over the years, and is more or less a good person. He's still bit of a dick.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Multiple times, but most notably when he basically goes off to use Serra's realm to power his ship. Keep in mind, before hand he had been healed by Serra, who saved him from almost certain death. To be fair, though, the plane was dying and was going to collapse anyway.
  • We Can Rule Together: When Yawgmoth asks him what is his greatest desire, Urza answers that he wants to sit next to him and benefit from his knowledge and power.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He may be a dick to everyone, including his allies, but at least his efforts go towards stopping Yawgmoth. That is, until he reaches Phyrexia.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Urza gets called out at least Once an Episode.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity

Post-Mending
During the events of the "Time Spiral" block, Dominaria was on the verge of reality tearing apart and the plane being unmade (and since Dominaria is the hub of the Magic universe, all other planes would fall soon after), mostly due to the various apocalypses the plane has been subjected to throughout the eons. The storyline ended with the rifts healed, but at a price; many of the old-style Planeswalkers gave up their Sparks, or in some cases, their lives, to fix the problem. The nature of the Spark itself had changed as well. The odds of being born with (and igniting) The Spark were about the same, but new-style Planeswalkers aren't nearly as powerful; they're mortal, and can't planeswalk as easily as their predecessors (it usually involves a ritual of some sort). They can't create their own worlds anymore, either. They are, however, "weak" enough to be printed on Magic cards without destroying game balance, and with the exception of the Lorwyn blocknote , are exclusively in the Mythic Rare rarity slot.

    Planeswalkers: Post-Mending - Part 1 

Ajani Goldmane

"Duty, honor, and valor are either in your heart or they are not. You will never know for certain until you are tested."

Ajani Goldmane is a white-aligned planeswalker. He first appeared in the storyline as a protagonist in the Shards of Alara block, where his quest to avenge the murder of his brother led him to discover the nefarious machinations of Nicol Bolas. He later meets up with Elspeth Tirel on Theros. His specialty is Soul Power: invoking and strengthening the spirits of others. Read more about him here.

Jace Beleren

"The things I once imagined would be my greatest achievements were only the first steps toward a future I can only begin to fathom."

Jace Beleren is a planeswalker who specializes in mental magic: telepathy, illusion, that sort of thing. He's a central character in Agents of Artifice. Read more about him here.

  • Abstract Apotheosis: He becomes the new guildpact at the end of the Return to Ravnica cycle.
  • Amnesiac Hero: He has little to no memory of his life prior to his spark igniting. His earliest lucid memories involve Ravnica, the first world he ever planeswalked to, and thus he considers it the closest thing he has to a home.
    • Expanded upon in his origin story. Jace worked for a corrupt arbiter who was selling war plans to further the conflict. Jace challenged the sphinx to a mental battle and allowed some of his memories to be erased in order to kill him.
  • Anime Hair: Seen in Jace's Ingenuity. His M12 card features it directly. Ironically, minimized in the Japanese Duel Decks version, which has his hood up.
  • Anti-Magic: Yawn
  • Audience Surrogate: Jace was designed to be a stand-in for what R&D considered the archetypal Magic player: an 18-to-30-year-old male, socially withdrawn but creative and intelligent. Even his color, blue, is polled as the most popular among that demographic.
  • Battle of Wits: Jace's favorite strategy.
  • Benevolent Mage Ruler: Becomes one on Ravnica as the Living Guildpact, arbiter of the many disputes between the guilds.
  • Blue Oni: To Chandra's Red Oni.
  • Byronic Hero: He has some of the typical traits, though he seems to growing out of it somewhat.
  • Charm Person
  • Cowardly Lion: A bit, especially when he stands up against Tezzeret because of his repeated abuse and lust for power. This eventually leads Jace to wipe Tezzeret's mind.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: His reaction to Niv-Mizzet literally coming up to his face and announcing that he would like to declare war on Selesnya? A stoic no. While Niv is forced to comply and flies away shortly after, it's highly suggested he was merely testing Jace's ability with the declaration, since he set off the whole maze run in order to avoid full scale war.
  • Enemy Mine: When he's not fighting Chandra, he's teaming up with her.
    • He also needed to team up with Ral Zarek sometime after becoming the living guildpact in order to prevent the knowledge of planeswalkers and the multiverse to reach Niv-Mizzet and the rest of his guild, which would likely cause even more consequences to Ravnica.
  • Facial Markings: It's unclear what purpose they serve.
  • Fake Memories: He doles out either this, or Mind Rape or flat-out Laser-Guided Amnesia quite regularly.
  • Guile Hero
  • In the Hood: About half of his artwork depicts him this way.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Has this as one of his powers.
  • Levitating Lotus Position: Easy Pose while being ingenious, as befits the exercise of physic powers.
  • Living MacGuffin: After the events of the Return to Ravnica block, the maze is fully solved and Jace becomes the living embodiment of the Guildpact, the entity which forbids the guilds from instigating open war with one another.
  • Master of Illusion
  • Memory Gambit: Pulls one during Return to Ravnica, ultimately resulting in Jace ascending to become the Living Guildpact.
    • Also does this in his Origins story to the Sphinx Alhammarret which allows Jace to kill him and planeswalk away.
  • Mind-Control Eyes: People under his control have glowing blue eyes.
  • Mind Manipulation
  • Mind Rape: All of his cards have had some form of this, but it shines the brightest on Jace, the Mind Sculptor's fourth ability. He also subjects Tezzeret to this in Agents of Artifice.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Many cases of this, but his bumbling in Zendikar with Chandra and Sarkhan stand out the most. For that one, he has no idea somebody named Bolas has planned that.
  • No Sell: Biggest example is his fight with Chandra.
  • Note to Self: Left one reminding himself that Alhammarret was erasing his memory of being a planeswakler.
  • Protectorate: Toward Ravnica.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: As the Living Guildpact.
  • Reluctant Ruler: He didn't ask to become the most powerful man on Ravnica, and isn't terribly comfortable in the role.
  • The Smart Guy
  • Psychic Powers
  • Platonic Life Partners: With an elf named Emmarra Tandris. Also a hefty amount of Unresolved Sexual Tension between them.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Towards Baltrice.
  • Telepathy
  • With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility: From everything we've seen, Jace is taking his duties as the Living Guildpact very seriously.
  • Would Hit a Girl: In The Secretist, he beats the crap out of a Rakdos bloodwitch in her own bar. To be fair, most bloodwitches are the kind of person you'd want to seriously injure.
    • In the fiction for the Jace vs. Vraska Duel Deck, Jace is is forced to fight for his life against the Gorgon.
  • Unhappy Medium: Before he learned to control it, Jace's innate mind magic made his life pretty miserable.
  • Unwitting Pawn: During his apprenticeship with Alhammarret, the sphinx used him to gather war intel and then sell it to continue fueling the war.

Chandra Nalaar

"Spontaneous combustion is a myth. If you burst into flame, someone wanted you to."

Chandra Nalaar is a red-aligned pyromancer and the star of The Purifying Fire. She's impulsive, passionate, and has a violent disrespect for authority. Read more about her here.

  • Action Girl
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Gideon.
  • Best Served Cold: Speaking strictly figuratively, of course. Chandra blows up The Order of Heliud's Regatha outpost. The Order was responsible for executing her village for harboring pyromancers.
  • Black Magician Girl
  • Cool Big Sis: To the children at Keral Keep.
  • Curtains Match the Window: Her Magic Origins official art gives her orange eyes the same color as her hair but see Depending on the Artist below.
  • Depending on the Artist: Most of the Post-Mending Walkers get shafted by this, but Chandra gets it the worst. Her eye color, her hair color, how straight her hair is when not on fire, how freckley she is, and just generally how attractive she is tend to vary in virtually every appearance.
  • Enemy Mine: When she's not fighting Jace, she's teaming up with him.
  • Expy: Of Jaya Ballard. Interestingly enough, the pyromancers of Keral Keep who took her in sprung up around Jaya's teachings. Jaya is, after all, known to rub off on people who hang around her too long - including Archmage Jodah, who lamented that her influence was making him as reckless as she was.
  • Fiery Redhead: Literally, as in, often depicted with flames.
  • Flaming Hair
  • Generation Xerox: There's precious little difference between her and Jaya Ballard, (Task Mage). When asked why they didn't just use Jaya, Mark Rosewater said they wanted a character without the baggage of a pre-existing backstory.
  • Goggles Do Nothing: It took them seven years before they finally printed a card showing Chandra wearing her goggles! Lampshaded by Maro himself.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: If Chandra can't figure it out, she uses "fist/fire logic" which is beating it up.
  • Having a Blast
  • High Hopes, Zero Talent: Her parents were renowned artificers in Kaladesh. Chandra didn't have the patience for it. She eventually finds her talent in Pyromancy.
  • Hot-Blooded
  • Kill It with Fire
  • Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds: She has absolutely no idea what she does in the Eye of Ugin eventually triggers the release of the Eldrazi.
  • Only the Pure of Heart: The Purifying Fire. The Order of Heliud favored executing their more notable prisoners and dissidents in the Purifying Fire, a massive wellspring of white mana on the plane of Regatha, that immolates all the guilty criminals that are thrown into it, as a way of proving their just cause. Chandra survived the experience after confessing her guilty feelings of her village's death to Gideon. It immolates the ''guilty''.
  • Playing with Fire
  • Pyro Maniac
  • Red Oni: To Jace's Blue Oni.
  • Talk to the Fist: Even before discovering her gift of fire power, she seems to be eager to throw her fists on anything that disagrees with her.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: The Tomboy to Liliana's Girly Girl.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Gideon. She likes him, but abhors his worldview of the greater good being more important than personal freedom.
  • Unskilled, but Strong: After one of her temper tantrums, the Order of Heliud came down hard on her village, because they believed they were harboring a large number of pyromancers. They didn't believe the amount of damage done was possible from a single person. She is powerful and volatile enough that Nicol Bolas in the Duels of the Planeswalkers 2013 describes her as "so utterly filled with power, so wholly lacking in restraint and vision."
  • Youthful Freckles

Garruk Wildspeaker

"The predator knows the true way of the world. Life is conflict. Only the strong survive."

Garruk Wildspeaker is a Beast Master planeswalker who wields green magic. He's a powerful hunter who lives in harmony with nature and aspires to be a true predator. His skirmish with Liliana on Innistrad left him defeated and cursed by the Chain Veil, which corrupted him with black magic. Now he seeks to hunt the ultimate game of the multiverse—planeswalkers. Read more about him here.

  • An Axe to Grind
  • Axe Crazy: Literally. While cursed, he puts that axe to good use.
  • Barbarian Hero
  • Battle Trophy: He took Lord Raklan's helmet as his own after avenging his father. He also takes Vronos' mask as one after killing him.
  • The Beast Master
  • Became Their Own Antithesis: The protector of the natural order has now become an interplanar serial killer. Then again, according to Magic 2013 he was already a social darwinist that hunted other planeswalkers, so it's not like he's that much different.
  • The Big Guy: He's at least a full head taller than the other human Planeswalkers. Duels of the Planeswalkers puts his height at 8 feet.
  • Challenge Seeker: He searches the multiverse for the biggest, baddest monsters to fight in order to prove himself. After being cursed by Liliana and the Chain Veil, his new prey is planeswalkers.
  • Child Soldiers: Defied. His father sent him into the wilderness so that he wouldn't be one...
  • Cool Helmet: A trophy of the feudal lord that drove him from his father and later killed him.
  • The Corruption: Suffers from one after being defeated by the Veil-enhanced Liliana.
  • Dark Is Evil: After being infected by the veil's curse. He was already a cuckoo social darwinist planeswalker hunter, but the veil made him an angry cuckoo planeswalker hunter. Though at least without the social darwinism, since he doesn't care anymore.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: After defeating the wild beasts he fights he forms bonds with them so he can summon them in battle later, making him a Fluffy Tamer.
  • The Determinator: During his time on Innistrad. Despite suffering under the curse's effects, he continues to follow Liliana's tracks.
  • Egomaniac Hunter: As Garruk, Apex Predator.
  • Enemy Within: The curse slowly consuming him from the inside.
  • Evil Makeover: He color scheme becomes more muted as the curse takes hold, until by Magic 2015 he's nothing but black, grey, and purple. Also, spikes.
  • Face-Heel Turn: By Magic 2015 he's succumbed to Liliana's curse and has become overtly malevolent, hunting down other Planeswalkers for sport.
    • Even after being freed of the curse's influence, he refuses Jace's help and readily admits that he doesn't mind killing in the slightest, even enjoying it from time to time. He weakly defends himself by saying that, so long as others aren't sent after him, no one else has to die. The story ends with him killing a retreating planeswalker, even though he acknowledges that it wasn't necessary, using the same weak defense as before.
  • Final Boss: Of Duels of the Planeswalkers '15. And you have to beat him twice in a row; the second being a One-Winged Angel form.
  • Fluffy Tamer
  • Forced Into Evil: Liliana's curse slowly warps his mind, leading him to do things he otherwise never would have done.
    • Seems to have embraced it after the curse is suppressed.
  • Fully-Embraced Fiend: He's given into the curse, and seems to have abandoned his quest to hunt down Liliana.
  • Genocide Backfire: In Garruk's backstory, the feudal lord who ruled his town tried to recruit Child Soldiers to fight his war. The young Garruk escaped into the forest, where he trained himself as a Beast Master. Years later, when he grew strong enough, he returned and killed the tyrant from his childhood.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: He started out hunting Liliana to make her remove the curse on him, but eventually started hunting other planeswalkers for sport.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: As Garruk Relentless.
  • Hero Killer: As Garruk, Apex Predator.
  • Heroic Willpower: The only thing keeping him from succumbing to Liliana's curse.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Several of his quotes reveal he has a very low opinion of humanity and civilization in general.
  • Hunter of His Own Kind: Garruk is now killing other planeswalkers for sport.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: In the original blurbs that were released when the original post-mending walkers were being spoiled, Garruk was said to enjoy the thrill of hunting fellow Planeswalkers. He was putting this to practice with Liliana but after his corruption by the Veil he's hunting down any walker he can find.
  • Hypocrite: One of Garruk's chief problems with civilized society, is how much they lie to one another and how little consequence there is to it. He is not above lying himself in any way, though considering he's Not Good with People, he probably considers it justified.
  • Implacable Man: He will find Liliana. And if you're his prey, he will find you.
  • Insult Backfire: In one comic, he recalls that people call him a monster. He comes to the conclusion, "They're wrong. I am a thousand of them."
  • Large and In Charge
  • Make My Monster Grow: He does this to his summons when they're not dangerous enough.
  • Might Makes Right
  • Mike Nelson, Destroyer of Worlds: The long-dead Onakke of Shandalar intend to goad Garruk into wiping Shandalar clean in his rampage, so they can return to life to dominate the plane.
  • Mook Maker: All three of his printed cards make tokens in varying levels of effectiveness.
  • More Than Mind Control: This seems to be the method of the veil's curse. It heightened Garruk's worst traits, playing on his innate violent nature.
  • Nature Hero: ...In the first portrayals. In Magic 2013, he is portrayed as a borderline psychopath.
    • To be fair, he's under the influence of the Chain Veil by that point.
  • Noble Savage: One of his core beliefs. Later on he becomes ... not so noble.
  • Not Good with People
  • One-Winged Angel: When you beat him on Zendikar, he taps into the power granted to him thanks to the veil's curse, causing him to grow larger, and grow Spikes of Villainy all over him. In-game, his second deck is all kinds of overpowered; a common play for him, through use of ramping and full clips of Gates and Dual Lands, is to put a Spiritmonger on the board by turn three.
  • Papa Wolf: His father is implied to be this. Garruk himself also counts, as he doesn't take too kindly to people harming his animal buddies.
  • Power Degeneration: The curse. He can tap into its power, but every time he does it gets stronger and he gets weaker.
  • Raised by Wolves: Semi. As a child, he was drafted into the military, so his father hid him in the woods. Using his Beast Master powers, he was then adopted into a family of Baloths, which are giant green horned monsters the size of monster trucks.
  • Resist The Beast: What he does throughout Innistrad. Eventually, he stops fighting.
  • Restraining Bolt: As a result of the Veil's curse.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Garruk is coming for Liliana. He also spent several years working to avenge his father's death by killing Lord Raklan.
  • Scarily Competent Tracker: He somehow managed to track Liliana through the Blind Eternities. How is that even possible?
  • Seeing Things: Under the Veil's curse. He hallucinates animals in the place of the Innistradi people he meets, performing actions which vaguely relate to what their human counterparts are doing (for instance, the "townsbirds" all flock to their nests as the people around him fearfully run indoors and peer at him suspiciously through upstairs windows).
  • Serial Killer: As Garruk, Apex Predator.
  • Slowly Slipping Into Evil: As a result of Liliana's curse affecting his mind, heightening his worst qualities.
  • The Social Darwinist: His Magic 2013 portrayal.
  • Spikes of Villainy: He seems to have sprouted a few lately ...
  • The Stoic
  • Summon Magic: He specializes in going to dangerous locales, finding the biggest meanest animals he can, beating the crap out of them, then bonding with them, allowing him to summon them at will.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: As seen in Innistrad, he seems to be giving in to it more often.
  • Tainted Veins: As "Garruk, the Veil-Cursed".
  • This Is Your Brain on Evil
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: He started out as Not Good with People, but during Magic 2013, he became a Social Darwinist due to the curse.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Most of the time.
  • Walking Wasteland: In the opening of Duels of the Planeswalkers 2015; a tree's fruits are seen engulfed with blight before rotting and falling off...and the remaining trees shrivel up and flake away as well.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity
  • Wolverine Claws
  • You Killed My Father: His father was arrested and executed for defying the local feudal lord, whom Garruk confronted for revenge later in life.

Elspeth Tirel

"Finally, I understand. Home isn't where you rest. It's what you fight for."

Elspeth Tirel is a planeswalker who wields White Magic. Born on a plane dominated by Phyrexia, she escaped after her spark ignited and roamed the worlds looking for a home. When she found Bant, she believed she'd found her true home; after Alara's Conflux, however, she felt that she no longer belonged, and left to roam the multiverse once more. As of the Godsend novel, Elspeth has apparently been Killed Off for Real. Read more about her here.

  • Action Girl
  • Bargain with Heaven: On Theros, with Heliod. Didn't work out that well for her.
  • Behind the Mask: In two senses. When on Bant, she pretended to be a normal soldier, hiding both her nature as a planeswalker and her magical skills. She also pretended to be perfectly fine even though her childhood was severely traumatic.
  • Blade on a Stick: As the Sun's Champion during the events of Theros, Heliod transforms her Sword into a spear named Godsend.
  • Blinded by the Light: As seen on Soul Parry, where Elspeth turns aside the attacks of two Nim zombies with a flash of bright white light.
  • Bling of War: That's some pretty impressive armor.
  • Broken Bird: Having your home destroyed and being raised in a concentration camp would do that.
  • Changed My Mind, Kid: In the Scarred comic. She has a Heroic BSOD after a particularly horrifying encounter with some Phyrexians; after a pep talk with a Vulshok shaman who admonishes her for her cowardice, she returns to rescue Venser and Koth from one of Jin-Gitaxias's experiments.
  • The Chosen One: She was chosen to be Heliod's champion on Theros.
  • Cool Sword: Her usual Weapon of Choice. It was later transformed into the Godsend, a very cool sword indeed ... despite actually being a polearm.
  • Cosmic Plaything: The multiverse just seems to have it in for her in general. First her Dark and Troubled Past, then watching Bant be invaded by Grixis, then everything to do with New Phyrexia. Then she goes to Theros, things seem to be looking up, but then Xenagos manages to scapegoat her for his ascension while making her kill Daxos, and even when she finally defeats Xenagos, Heliod kills her out of pure spite. And on top of that, even though she attempts to sacrifice herself for Daxos, he is brought back as a Returned living out a Fate Worse Than Death.
  • Cowardly Lion: She is a very strong planeswalker and really wants to help, but she finds herself more often running away than actually helping in any way.
  • The Cynic / The Fatalist/ The Idealist: Simultaneously manages to be all three at the same time.
    • She thinks her version of paradise, Bant, will fall to the undead of Grixis, even as the fight isn't yet lost and Ajani tries to convince her to help him.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: She was raised in a Phyrexian death camp. She was only thirteen when her spark ignited and she escaped.
  • Death by Irony: She is killed by the weapon she used as the Sun's Champion, wielded by the sun god himself.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Elspeth falls dangerously close to it in Part II of Scarred.
  • Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: She's basically a person of faith, and badly needs something to believe in. At first she had Bant, but it was destroyed. Then she briefly had the Mirran Resistance, but it was also destroyed. Then she became Heliod's champion. The poor girl just can't win.
  • Face Your Fears: She has a temporary Heroic BSOD on Mirrodin when she comes face-to-face with the Phyrexians, but manages to overcome it through this trope.
  • A Father to Her Men: She is very dedicated to soldiers under her command and takes their well-being very seriously.
  • The Fettered: Time and again, it's her responsibility towards others that pulls her back from the edge of despair and gives her the power to keep going.
  • Fighting for a Homeland: After her spark ignited, she spent several years looking for a place she could be at peace. Eventually she found Bant, only to have it snatched away from her.
  • The Hero Dies
  • Heroic Sacrifice: She attempts to sacrifice herself to resurrect Daxos, but it is ultimately a...
    • Senseless Sacrifice: Heliod would have killed her regardless, and Erebos cheats her by reviving Daxos as a Returned.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Heliod kills her with the Godsend, the same spear she used to defeat Polukranos and Xenagos.
  • Heartbroken Badass: In a sense. She was deeply devoted to her adopted homeland of Bant, and when it broke a part of her did too.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: She has very low self-esteem at the best of times.
  • Honor Before Reason: At first, she refuses to use her magic to defend Bant from the zombie invaders of Grixis, fighting hand-to-hand instead.
  • Hope Spot: On Theros, she finds a friend in Daxos, becomes a hero, slays the divine hydra, Polukranos, and breaks the siege of Akros. She even starts to think that maybe Theros can be her home. Then Xenagos manipulates her into killing Daxos, makes her a scapegoat for his ascension, and even when she finally slays him, Heliod kills her out of petty jealousy.
  • Hurting Hero
  • I Just Want to Be Normal
    • On Bant, Elspeth decides to abandon her planeswalking and become an ordinary knight. She refuses to reveal her powerful magical abilities for fear that it would set her apart from the others.
    • Her role on Theros paints her as a reluctant hero once again, with Heliod calling on her to fight the monsters that are threatening humanity.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Courtesy of Heliod
  • Killed Off for Real: Effectively dies as of the second part of Godsend.
  • Kill the God: Battles Xenagos, God of Revels during the events of "Journey into Nyx". As seen on the card "Deicide", she plunges the Godsend into his chest and successfully strikes him down.
    Elspeth: It is done.
  • Knight Errant: Unlike other Knight Errants, she wants to find a home and settle there. Too bad said home doesn't last forever...
  • Knight in Shining Armor: She matches a lot of the classic stereotypes. However ...
  • Knight in Sour Armor: She hides her fragile idealism under a suit of pessimistic armor.
  • Lady of War
  • Light 'em Up
  • Magic Knight: She's skilled with both her sword/spear and white magic.
  • Meaningful Name: "Elspeth" is the Scottish form of Elizabeth, which means "oath of God". As such, her name becomes quite fitting once she becomes Heliod's champion.
  • Mission from God: Tasked by Heliod to slay Xenagos. She succeeds, but Heliod literally stabs her in the back.
  • Mook Maker: All her incarnations so far can make 1/1 Soldiers of varying quantity.
  • Never Be Hurt Again: After growing up in a Phyrexian concentration camp, Bant was the first place she ever felt safe.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: One of her ultimate spells shields her allies from any form of conventional damage.
  • The Paladin
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Faced her fears, saved the world, got killed by Heliod for her trouble.
  • La Résistance: During her time on Mirrodin.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Her motivation for fighting Xenagos after he ascends is to avenge Daxos.
  • The Scapegoat: Xenagos completed his final ritual to become one of Theros' Gods during a victory celebration after the breaking of the siege of Akros—a battle which Elspeth commanded. She got the blame for the ensuing upheaval and was exiled to the wilderness.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Implied with some of her reactions to the Phyrexians, the ones who killed her family.
  • Straw Nihilist: While she is well meaning, her post-traumatic stress disorder has left her so utterly cynical and pessimistic that she can't bring herself to save Bant, her adopted home. She gets better when fighting against the Phyrexians, the ones who caused her PTSD.
  • Survivors Guilt: When her spark ascended, she managed to escape her Phyrexian captors - but was forced to leave her family behind.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Elspeth Tirel in New Phyrexia: one step away from a Despair Event Horizon. Elspeth Tirel in Theros: kills a nigh-invulnerable god-hydra upon her arrival to the plane because no one else was there who would. Not bad, Elspeth. Not bad.
  • White Mask of Doom: Has one of these after dying on Theros and having to go down to Nyx. Her mask is seen as having her nose and mouth, while her "eyes" are in the same shape and layout of the two white gems in her trademark sword/spear.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: After the events of Alara, and the ensuing Conflux, the idyllic image she has of Bant is permanently marred. While the five mini-planes are now back as one singular plane, she feels she can't go back to her adopted home on Bant.

Sarkhan Vol

"Some were born to fight. Some were born to rule. I was never born at all."

The dragon shaman planeswalker Sarkhan Vol was first introduced in Shards of Alara. At first, he wielded red and green magic, but under Nicol Bolas's tutelage (as well as Sanity Slippage), he's moved away from green in favor of black. He was originally from the war-torn plane of Tarkir, where dragons have long since become extinct. His purpose for returning is to find the remains of Ugin, which leads in 1,280 years into the past to save the Spirit Dragon. After completing his mission, he returns to the present only to find that no one recognizes or remembers him. Read more about him here.

  • A Day in the Limelight: He's the main protagonist of the "Khans of Tarkir" expansion.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Sarkhan has a Slavic name, but is distinctly Asian looking.
  • Barbarian Hero
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Seems to feel this way about Narset, the only person we've seen treat him kindly. After she's killed while guiding him to Ugin's Nexus, Sarkhan swears to use his time-travelling opportunity to not only make sure she lives, but that Tarkir is a better world for her.
    • Hammered home when he returns to the present: Sarkhan is overjoyed to find a world ruled by dragons, thinking it perfect... until he finds out that Narset was branded a heretic and has apparently disappeared, at which point his perfect world comes crumbling down. He almost seems to consider this "worse" than a world without dragons, and turns to Ugin in the hopes that this new problem can be fixed. Then after meeting Ugin, he finally meets her, and his mood promptly improves.
  • The Berserker: His second card is the only planeswalker card that doesn't have an ability to increase his loyalty, so fighting will kill him sooner or later.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Throwing his chips in with Bolas probably wasn't the best idea.
  • Breath Weapon: He can do it out of his hands, no less.
  • Broken Pedestal: Threw himself at Bolas' feet, thinking that he was the dragon he could spend his life venerating. Seeing that Bolas acted very un-dragonlike was what started Sarkhan's Sanity Slippage.
  • Chekhov's Gun: While on Zendikar, Sarkhan takes a piece of a Hedron from the Eye of Ugin. Said hedron turns into the Crucible of the Spirit Dragon.
  • The Dragon: To Bolas. Pun not intended.
  • Dragon Rider
  • Driven to Madness: By Nicol Bolas' mindraping touch.
  • Hearing Voices: He carries a small hedron that he believes the spirit dragon Ugin speaks to him through. It remains to be seen if he's right. He is.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: As Sarkhan the Mad.
  • The Lost Lenore: Still pines for "his" Narset (see Because You Were Nice to Me) , who—by his summation—was lost twice: once to being killed in combat, the second because the timeline she was from no longer exists. Planeswalker!Narset at least sympathized with Sarkhan's feelings.
  • Magic Staff: He seems to have dumped it in favor of a Blade on a Stick.
  • Meaningful Name: Sarkhan comes from the word "šarkan", which means dragon in the Slovak language. As a bonus, it is a popular name for guard dogs in Slavic countries, which is more or less how Bolas treats Sarkhan.
    • In Tarkir, "Sar" means high or sky, meaning he is literally higher than the Khans. This is what causes Yasova to distrust him.
  • Mind Rape: Bolas has been doing this to him, and it's been taking its toll on his psyche.
  • Might Makes Right: The reason for his tribe's dragon worship.They're more powerful than every other form of life, thus making them the rightful rulers.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: As a slave of Bolas. He seems to be questioning this stance lately.
  • Not Worth Killing: In the original Tarkir, Narset fell in combat to the monstrous Zurgo Helmsmasher. In the rewritten Tarkir, his clan is called to attention by the diminutive Zurgo Bellstriker. Sarkhan decides seeking revenge on this Zurgo is a waste of time.
  • Old Soldier: Was once a general in the Mardu clan on Tarkir. When he ascended in the middle of a battle, his army was slaughtered.
  • Playing with Fire
  • Ret Gone: Sarkhan was never born in Tarkir's new timeline. He has become, in his own words, "an orphan of time."
  • Sanity Slippage: After spending a long time isolated in the Eye of Ugin, he reappeared in Rise of the Eldrazi as Sarkhan the Mad.
  • Scaled Up: Form of the Dragon Card, and he does this to others on Sarkhan the Mad.
    • As Sarkhan the Dragonspeaker, he can turn into a 4/4 Dragon creature with flying, haste, and indestructible''. And that's his +1 ability, too.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: This is the reason why Ugin's whispers led him through a mysterious gate that sent him 1,280 years into Tarkir's past: to prevent the Spirit Dragon's death at the hands of Nicol Bolas.
  • Stockholm Syndrome: One explanation for his devotion to an evil dragon who has badly mistreated him.
  • Submissive Badass: While willingly under Bolas' thumb.
    • To Ugin, too.
  • Temporal Paradox: Sarkhan saving Ugin causes him to vanish from the past, and when he returns to the present-day Tarkir he finds out that there are no longer any records or memories of his existence.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Meta-wise, his latest card's final ability can summon all dragons from the player's deck, suggesting this of him. Also, with the new addition of Blue, he's now spanned four colors - something not even Nicol Bolas can boast.note 
  • Trapped In Villainy: Not anymore.
  • Übermensch: Sarkhan strives to live his life unbound by the chains of civilization, believing that listening to your heart and instincts is better than the 'arbitrary' rules of society. Unfortunately, this makes him quite morally dubious at times. And then he caves and becomes more of a Last Man as he submits to Nicol Bolas's will.
  • Where It All Began: Ironically enough, he had to return home to Tarkir in order to take the next step of his journey: resurrecting Ugin.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: The poor guy wasn't really in control of himself or his actions during the events in the Eye of Ugin.

Tezzeret

"I appreciate the depravity of noble designs turned to devious ends."

Originally from the Alaran shard of Esper, Tezzeret is a blue-aligned planeswalker (and an agent of Nicol Bolas) who specializes in artifice. Read more about him here.

Nissa Revane

"Life grows everywhere. My kin merely find those places where it grows strongest."

Nissa Revane wields green magic to muster her people and amplify their might. Later, she began using black mana covertly, believing it a necessary means to move the elves toward their rightful place. Read more about her here

Gideon Jura

"A great warrior studies many different disciplines and takes the best from each."

Gideon Jura is a planeswalker originally from Therosnote  who wields White Magic. Unlike most planeswalkers, Gideon doesn’t hesitate to enter combat. He also practices hieromancy, the magic of holy justice. Currently resides on Ravnica and is allied with the Boros Legion. Read more about him here.

  • Action Hero
  • An Adventurer Is You: Commonly portrayed as the Tank among other planeswalkers. A specialty magic of his is a form of mind magic that makes his enemies unable to perceive any threat but Gideon.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Chandra.
  • Canon Immigrant: Gideon was originally created by author Laura Resnick as an original character for The Purifying Fire. The creative team liked him enough to give him his own card.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: He abandons his quest to help save Zendikar from the Eldrazi in order to help stop warfare between the guilds of Ravnica, knowing that innocent lives would be lost in the conflict.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: If the intro to Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012 is any indication, he's rather good at this. On either end.
  • The Fettered: Almost everything he does is to protect innocent lives. However ...
  • Good Is Not Soft: That said, he achieves it by bashing the guilty's faces in.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: The intro to Duels Of The Planeswalkers 2012 has him ruminating that he became a massive asshole, "blinded by my own self-righteousness," to the point where he is labeled a tyrant.
  • Heel-Face Turn: He quits The Order after learning that they murdered Chandra's village for hiding her identity as a pyromancer.
  • The Hero: For Magic Core Set 2012.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: He's given a spear by Heliod to destroy Erebos' titan champion. When he throws it at Erebos, it's sent immediately back, infinitely harder, which does nothing to Kytheon and annihilates his friends. This ignites his spark.
  • Honor Before Reason: He tries to help the Boros maintain law and order on Ravnica, even though it really isn't his problem and he really does have much more important things to worry about.
  • Ideal Hero
  • The Idealist
  • Knight Templar: Until he learned the evil of his ways and was redeemed.
    • Specifically, his utter and absolute conviction that the Order of Heliud is doing the right thing echoes the problems of white mana taken to excess, a black and white view that cannot accept different ways and means of doing things. He doesn't understand how far out of balance things had become until the Purifying Fire rebelled against the use to which it was being put.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: After defending Fort Keff from an enormous number of Eldrazi spawn, he realizes he's over his head when he sees Emrakul on the horizon. He high-tails it for Ravnica to find help.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: His friends, "Kytheon's Irregulars", die because they can't miraculously become invulnerable like Kytheon can.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: Can grant himself this via magic for a limited amount of time.
  • One-Man Army: He takes on a swarm of the Eldrazi spawn single-handed. And wins.
  • Passion Is Evil: Was taught to divorce his magic from emotions, which is why he doesn't particularly see eye to eye with Chandra, whose magic is entirely based on emotions, something he considers rather destructive and unsavoury. Suffice to say, him joining the Boros, even if temporarily and purely out of necessity, was quite the surprise.
  • Race Lift: The Funko Pop figure of Gideon is noticeably darker than his prior depictions. When asked about this, Doug Beyer responded that Gideon was supposed to look more "Mediterranean" rather than "straight-up white" originally.
    • Considering that he has been "revealed" to have originally been from Theros, his Mediterranean colouring makes sense.
  • Retcon: His origin story in Magic: Origins is severely at odds with previous canon.note 
  • Small Steps Hero: He can't help himself from trying to save people on Ravnica, even though he's already trying to save people on Zendikar.
  • The Chosen One: After defending the Temple of Triumph, Kytheon is selected by Heliod to destroy a titan sent by Erebos. He does, but his own hubris thanks to his own weapon turned against him ends up killing his friends and igniting his spark.
  • This Is My Name on Foreign: Back when he lived on Theros, he went by the name Kytheon Iora. When he arrives on Bant after his first planeswalk, the knight he stumbles across asks him his name. Thanks to her mishearing, she refers to him as "Gideon."
  • To Be Lawful or Good: His adventures with the free-spirited Chandra Nalaar cause him to question the righteousness of the organization he's been working for. He ultimately falls firmly on the side of good.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With Chandra. He likes her, but doesn't like her chaotic, self-serving nature.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist
  • Whip It Good: More specifically, his Weapon of Choice is a whiplike Urumi. (Gideon's weapon is also sometimes called a sural.)

Koth of the Hammer

"If there can be no victory, then I will fight forever."

Koth is a Vulshok planeswalker who wields red magic. His specialty is geomancy, spells that move mountains, shatter stone, and melt iron. His earth magic has a special strength in it that allows him to purify metal, which reflects Koth’s own inner desire to bring peace and harmony to his people. Read more about him here.

Venser, the Sojourner

"Two magi could trade spells all day and never crown a victor. The real battle is not one of power but of will. If your confidence breaks, so too shall you."

Venser is a planeswalker originally from Urborg who wields Blue and White Magic. His specialty is teleportation magic and building his own unique and powerful artifacts. Venser is brilliant and able to think fast on his feet to find a way out of any sticky situation he encounters. He relies on his knowledge of artifice and teleportation to pave his way through the Multiverse, where he satisfies his boundless curiosity of all things mechanical. Read more about him here.

  • Action Survivor: Starts out way in over his head during the Time Spiral block, but learns quickly. By the end, he's more level-headed, skilled, and ready to face the challenges in front of him.
  • Anti-Hero: In his second appearence, he was depicted as an irritable Jerkass who had an addiction to blinkmoth serum. Though the irritable part is somewhat justified, as he was dragged there by Koth against his will.
  • Addictive Magic/Fantastic Drug: In the Scars of Mirrodin block, it's shown that he is addicted to blinkmoth serum. Given that blinkmoths are endemic to Mirrodin, and he spent the better part of his life in his homeplane of Dominaria, it's not clear how he became addicted in the first place, and it doesn't have any bearing to the plot whatsoever anyways.
  • Cool Helmet: Was the control rig for his ambulator. Funnily enough, he started out not liking it, but Jhoira convinced him of its merits.
  • Explosive Overclocking: He exploited this to kill the Weaver King, overloading two powerstones right in his face as he was trying to take over Venser's body.
  • Gadgeteer Genius
  • Foil: To Tezzeret. Where Tezzeret has Creative Sterility, Venser can't stop building things. Where Tezzeret turned to black mana, Venser turned to white. Tezzeret sided with Phyrexians, Venser aided the Mirrans. Tezzeret lived. Venser died.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrifices himself to save Karn at the end of the Scars of Mirrodin block novel.
  • Heroic Willpower: Ignited his Planeswalker spark by working tirelessly to stop temporal distortions around Dominaria and by building new inventions.
  • Light 'em Up: Apparently can summon wisps of light to guide his path. By Scars of Mirrodin, he shows proficiency in White mana.
  • Love at First Sight: Quickly develops a boyish crush on Jhoira of the Ghitu, partly due to her level-headedness and partly due to her brains and beauty. He eventually grows out of it, though he still considers her a friend.
  • Magic Feather: As it turned out, the ambulator he was working on in Time Spiral was completely unnecessary; he had a special talent for teleportation magic.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue Oni to Koth's Red Oni.
  • The Smart Guy: In the Scars of Mirrodin storyline, Venser is the logical, sciencey member of the lead trio. A telling moment is how in an early encounter with Phyrexian horrors, his instinct is to take samples and study them.
  • Space and Time Master: Following in Teferi's footsteps, he can send things into the future (that is, to the end of your turn), send creatures directly to the enemy (make them unblockable), and erase things from existence (his emblem).
  • Stock Sound Effects: The sound he makes when he teleports is "Tpff!"
  • Teleporters and Transporters
  • Ur Example: The first of the new breed of planeswalkers.

    Planeswalkers: Post-Mending - Part 2 

Kiora

"Every sea is different, but all of them are connected."

Introduced in Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012, Kioranote  is a merfolk planeswalker who commands the powers of the depths. Kiora venerates the huge creatures of the sea—krakens, leviathans, and other denizens of the inky depths—because for her they are evidence that even the most persistent forces can be endured: time, water, predation, and darkness. Kiora is a blue- and green-aligned Planeswalker. She seems calm and wise, but her dreams are bizarre beyond imagining. Kiora hails from the plane of Zendikar, and seeks the biggest, most badass sea monsters to seize as weapons against the rampaging Eldrazi there. Read more about her here.

  • A God Am I: By Journey Into Nyx she's started to boast that she'll show the gods what true power is.
    • Leading to an inevitable feud between her and Thassa, with consequences impinging on Elspeth's quest. This feud ends (for now) with Thassa kicking Kiora's ass soundly, but Kiora escaping with Thassa's bident.
  • Badass Boast / Blasphemous Boast: Thassa doesn't take it too kindly.
    "I will match Thassa drop for drop and show a god what true power is."
  • The Beast Master: Specifically of Kraken and Leviathan-type beasts.
    • Considering that she hails from the Tazeem, the merfolk of Zendikar, this isn't that far of a stretch.
  • Cult: Used to be a devout member of Cosi's cult. Then Cosi turned out to be the world-eating Eldrazi Kozilek, which gave her a new mission in life.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Appeared in Duels of the Planeswalkers three years before her first card in Born of the Gods.
  • Fantastic Racism: Sees landbound races as inferior because they lack her connection to the oceans.
  • Fighting for a Homeland: Her primary goal is to find a way to reclaim her native plane from the Eldrazi.
  • Giant Wall of Watery Doom: The first thing she does on arriving in Theros is create one to get the attention of any nearby krakens.
  • God Guise: The tritons (merfolk) of Theros see her as an avatar of the merfolk goddess; Thassa. Kiora does little to dispel this notion, as it amuses her.
    • Bites her in the ass as Thassa is not pleased with this, and the sea goddess hunts her down.
  • Jerkass: On the official Magic the Gathering Facebook page, Wizards mentioned that Kiora is "VERY mean".
    • Varied when traveling with Ajani and Elspeth. While Kiora really doesn't care about them or their quest, and hopes that they make good decoys for the very angry Thassa, she's nothing but non-hostile to the two, wishing them good luck and waving goodbye sincerely.
  • Kill It with Water
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Makes off with Dekalla, Thassa's bident.
  • Knight Templar: She's out to stop the Eldrazi, and doesn't really care if she happens to drown some humans on the way.
  • Kraken and Leviathan: These are a few of her favorite things. Her card's ultimate ability gives you a 9/9 kraken every turn.
  • Making a Splash: She's as attuned to the destructive powers of water as Chandra is to fire.
  • Our Mermaids Are Different: A planeswalking, two-legged one from Zendikar.
  • Pride: She seems to have become distracted by her desire to prove herself more powerful than the freaking god of the ocean.
  • Retcon: Her last name was originally Atua, but eventually Wizards of the Coast realized it was offensive to the Maori people. Now she officially is just Kiora.
  • Sea Monster: Her favorite creatures. She wants as many of them as possible in order to wage war against the Eldrazi on equal terms.
  • Seashell Bra: Part of her armor.
  • Shout-Out: The wave behind her seems to be a mirrored "Great Wave off Kanagawa".
  • Summon Bigger Fish: Quite literally how she wants to defeat the Eldrazi.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist

Dack Fayden

"Some treasures aren't worth finding, let alone stealing."

The greatest thief in all the multiverse and star of IDW's comic series. Being sure never to stay in a place until he wears out his welcome, Dack Fayden uses his specialty, psychometry, to pry into any artifact he comes across, and learn everything about it. This also gives him some amount of prophetic visions. Using these talents, Dack travels from plane to plane, swiping whatever he sets his eyes on, not for wealth or for the thrill, but for knowledge. He is on the prowl for Sifa Grent, a planeswalker responsible for the annihilation of his hometown on the plane of Fiora. Read more about him here.

Ral Zarek

"I see countless worlds. What makes them think I can't find them in just one?"

Hailing from the city-plane of Ravnica and a member of the Izzet League, Ral Zarek is a Blue and Red aligned planeswalker who debuted in the Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 expansion. He is trying to stay off the radar as much as possible, and not even Niv-Mizzet himself knows of his ability to planeswalk. Read more about him here.

In the Dragon's Maze trailer, he is voiced by Yuri Lowenthal.

Tamiyo, the Moon Sage

"True riches are found in the mazes of the mind."

A moonfolk planeswalker hailing from Kamigawa, Tamiyo is a blue-aligned planeswalker who believes that all planes hold mysteries that set them apart from each other. She came to Innistrad to research the interesting magical properties of its silver moon, and stayed after the return of Avacyn, studying the guardian angel's effects on the plane alongside the astronomer Jenrik. Read more about her here.

  • Fantastic Science: Categorizes and studies supernatural phenomena.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Kind of. She was a field scholar before her spark ignited, and now she continues her work throughout the multiverse, sending reports back to Oboro on what she observes. She's described as very curious, seeing every plane as a treasure trove of knowledge to be explored.
  • Lunacy: Her academic obsession in Innistrad is studying its famous argent moon and its various effects. The connection to lycanthropy just fascinates the soratami.
    Tamiyo: I'm pleased this world has learned the moon affects more than the tides.
  • Spirited Young Lady: She is a young intelligent Soratami noble with a carefree, independent attitude but acts with ladylike grace as well. In addition, she's dressed much more practically than the other Soratami we've seen, eschewing their long, ornate robes for pants.

Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded

"Pained defiance or shameful surrender—every reaction is a pleasant surprise."

Hailing from Innistrad, Tibalt began his career as a skaberen - a Blue aligned Mad Scientist necromancer - but he lacked the talent for corpse reanimation. This incited feelings of rage, and thus he turned to experiments on living beings. Feeling empowered, he became a sadist, and the cruelty of his experiments attracted devils. Eventually, the cathars discovered his evil and tried to arrest him. In rage, he casted a spell that fused him with the devils, igniting his spark in the process as he felt the pain of every one that he experimented on. Now half-human half-devil, he is free to do as he pleases in the multiverse. Read more about him here.

Vraska the Unseen

"I have seen things that would reduce a weaker person to blubbering and raving. Want to hear about them?"

A planeswalker introduced in Return to Ravnica, she is a gorgon from the Golgari guild who was almost murdered by the Boros under the dictate of the Azorius. Her spark ignited, and she now seeks to impose karmic deaths on those she sees as the criminals of Ravnica, mostly corrupt law officers. Read more about her here.

  • A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read: When Jace attempts to read her thoughts, he finds that she is visualizing nothing but millions of ways to murder him, in graphic detail. He breaks the connection out of reflexive horror.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Suddenly got very power hungry in the offscreen meantime between her last appearence and The Gorgon and The Guildpact, wanting to take over Ravnica.
  • Bad Boss: She apparently runs a network of assassins in the Undercity, and said assassins under her care would rather die than return in failure.
  • Career Killer: Runs an agency full of them.
  • Criminal Mind Games: Taunts Jace with a series of public killings, leaving clues to her location.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: She was almost killed during a riot in an Azorius prison ... so she becomes a serial killer targeting high-profile Azorius bureaucrats. Seems legit.
  • The Dreaded: Even in Ravnica's Undercity, she is rarely seen in person and is feared due to her track record of kills.
  • Engineered Public Confession: Jace pulls this on her during The Gorgon and The Guildpact, transmitting her image in real-time to a summit meeting of guildmasters as she gloats about her despotic aims.
  • Femme Fatalons: Has some pretty wicked claws.
  • Karmic Death: Her specialty.
  • Knight Templar
  • Medusa: She is a gorgon. Apparently, her non-planeswalker self was vulnerable to sunlight, and she can obviously petrify people.
  • Moral Sociopathy: As a serial killer, she's pretty much by definition as a sociopath, but she also adheres to a warped code of ethics that determine who she kills, and why.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: What she seems to think she's doing, anyway.
  • Poetic Serial Killer
  • Prehensile Hair: Like all Ravnican gorgons, she has long whip-like tendrils for hair. In the art for Night's Whisper she can be seen using them to grab a victim's head.
  • The Scourge of God: How she sees herself.
  • Taken for Granite: Has this as an ability to inflict this to others as a gorgon.
  • Vigilante Woman: A very dark version of this.
  • Weakened by the Light: Apparently. She was almost killed by an Azorius guard forcing her into the sunlight, which ignited her spark.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: In a very twisted way. She believes she's making Ravnica a better place by culling its corrupt elements.

Domri Rade

"Roots, ruins, and room to fight. All the comforts of home."

Introduced in Gatecrash, Domri Rade is a planeswalker aligned with the Gruul clans, specializing in summoning creatures and unleashing them unto his foes. Read more about him here.

Xenagos

"The gods of Theros are born of the expectations and beliefs of mortals. If I have found godhood, what does that say about their true desires?"

Introduced in the Theros block, Xenagos is a red and green satyr planeswalker from the titular plane. He led a hedonistic lifestyle before ascending, and quickly realised how utterly insignificant he was in the big scheme of things. He returns to Theros, now burning with ambition and evil plans. Read more about him here.

  • A God Am I: He actually did became a god, so he's not as delusional as most examples.
  • Ambition Is Evil
  • Anti-Villain: He is basically an angry, bitter person who seeks to disrupts what he sees as a farce.
  • Arc Villain: Of the Theros Block. The first Green aligned Big Bad in Magic's history, no less. However, while the main antagonist in terms of action, he's far out-shined by Heliod in terms of atrocities.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: As of Born of the Gods, Xenagos does indeed become a demigod of Theros.
  • Becoming the Mask: Xenagos is slowly becoming like the rest of the gods: a tyrant and an oppressor. More than a few of his former followers now openly fight against him for that.
    • Became Their Own Antithesis
    • There's a card ("Silence the Believers") that shows Xenagos with a look of horror on his face as a warrior slits the throat of one of his followers. There's another, "Revel of the Fallen God", which shows Xenagos' fellow satyrs in a state of panic now that he's gone. While he is far from the nicest guy around, he is shown to have some form of compassion for his satyr brethren.
  • Broken Masquerade
  • The Caligula: During his time as the Stranger King of the satyrs. He wasn't exactly the best leader, as demonstrated by the flavor text on Eidolon of the Great Revel:
    "Xenagos reveled while Theros burned."
  • Chekhov's Gun: He was stricken by an arrow of Nylea which, while not killing him, left an arrowhead. In a display of true hellenic hubris, Xenagos refused to have it removed, and he paid dearly for it: as at the end of the Godsend saga, Elspeth takes advantage of it to destroy him.
  • Cool Crown: His horns become larger and form an intiminating crown after his ascension.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: When his spark ignited, he realized how pointless his entire life had been, and how meaningless the gods of Theros really were.
  • Deity of Human Origin: Well, satyr origin.
  • Discard and Draw: Nope! Word of God confirms that even in his God form, Xenagos still has his Planeswalker spark.
  • Expy: Of Pan, who is a satyr with a penchant for the wilderness and sexual activities, and of Dionysus as the God of Revels.
  • The Fair Folk: He and his fellow satyrs pose as a fun-loving race, but are they (mostly) are in truth malicious towards humans.
  • For the Evulz/Kick the Dog: Engages in a lot of pointless cruelty, up to arranging the deaths of his own followers.
    • In Godsend, the Theros novel, he has a man stoned to death by his satyrs just because the man told him a story he'd heard before and found boring.
  • Fauns and Satyrs: Holds the title of the first printed satyr planeswalker.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Basically feels betrayed and lied to by the gods, after learning how large the multiverse outside of Theros is.
  • Gone Horribly Right: His plan to become a god succeeds beyond his wildest dreams, making him exactly what he always despised most and almost destroying the world in the process.
  • The Hedonist: Before "wising up".
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Elspeth kills him by impaling him with the Godsend.
  • Improbable Weapon User: After his ascension, he has something of a cross between a lyre and an battleaxe for a weapon. Count as a Bizarre Instrument too.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: The gods do meddle in the affairs of mortals, for good or ill, are dependent on those whose fates they mess with, and are either ignorant of or actively suppressing the truth regarding the multiverse at large. It's not hard to see why exactly Xenagos sees them as a 14-man charlatan act.
  • Karmic Trickster: Against the gods themselves, no less.
  • Killed Off for Real: Courtesy of Elspeth
  • Mook Maker: His second ability summons satyr tokens.
  • One-Winged Angel: Once he becomes the God of Revels, his appearance becomes notably more demonic and monstrous.
  • The Paragon: Seen as this by the other satyrs before his ascension, and for a while after it. It didn't last.
  • Physical God
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: The second part of Godsend reveals that he uses trapped Nyxborn to power himself after his ascension. In the end, Elspeth and Ajani free them.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Showed signs of this even as a mortal, but really took it Up to Eleven after becoming a god.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Though he wants to be part of it.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: In the Born Of The Gods trailer.
    Xenagos: So much power. So much adoration. And what do the gods do with it? They meddle.
  • Rebellious Spirit: He finds the status quo on Theros so offensive that he really doesn't care if his plan completely destroys it.
  • Straw Nihilist: The gods are frauds! The entire Theran way of life is based on a lie!
  • Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: He was a rather psychotic child.
  • The Unfettered: He's out to expose the gods, and he'll see the whole world burn before he stops.
  • Visionary Villain
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: In his own mind he's trying to "fix" the world ... it's just that a lot of people will have to die in order to do that.

Ashiok

"Every nightmare is a caged bird that yearns to be set free."

Introduced in the Theros block, Ashiok is a mysterious planeswalker associated with blue and black mana. If Ashiok was ever human, Ashiok isn't anymore: a being of pure nightmare, who extracts powers from the fears of others. Ashiok has come to Theros, drawn by the beliefs of the locals: where there is faith, there is insecurity and fear of displeasing the gods, and Ashiok seeks power here. Read more about Ashiok here.

  • Ambiguous Gender: Though the players' guide uses male pronouns, Ashiok's official status is of an unspecified gender.
    Irats: Is Ashiok male or female?
    Mark Rosewater: I believe so, but Ashiok does not like being defined.
  • Bargain with Heaven: Seemingly committed a very dark version of this in "Building Toward A Dream, Part 2", with Phenax, god of lies and deceit.
  • Body Horror: Lacks their entire upper skull.
  • Dream Weaver
  • Emotion Eater: Ashiok feeds off the fear of others.
  • Evil Makes You Monstrous: After manipulating the leonin and the people of Iretis to slaughter each other and tricking the king into stabbing out his eyes and committing suicide, another tiny fleck of what remains of Ashiok's skull dissolved into smoke.
  • Eyeless Face: A variant as Ashiok only has the lower-half of their face, leaving only a mouth.
  • Humanoid Abomination: The lack of an upper skull is a give-away.
  • I Know What You Fear
  • Mad Artist: Ashiok describes the destruction on Iretis and the brutal suicide of its ruler:
    "I am pleased with my work today ... but I have more beautiful art to achieve."
    • In "Dreams of a City", it turns out Ashiok's current goal is to weave Therosian nightmares into a new god without it being subsumed by an already-existing god. And while Cacophony was quelled by Ephara, Ashiok just sees this as an opportunity to get idea-seeds from the gods themselves. And maybe make Cacophony stronger still...
  • Mind Rape: Ashiok's specialty.
  • Mook Maker: Their second ability summons Nightmare creatures.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Eldritch Abominations? Things Man Was Not Meant to Know? Body Horror? Sounds delightful!
  • Otherworldly and Sexually Ambiguous
  • Softspoken Sadist: The handful of quotes we have by Ashiok made them out to be this way.
    “Knowledge is such a burden. Release it. Release all your fears to me.”
  • True Art Is Angsty: Invoked. Ashiok's idea of what exactly constitutes "art" is ...a bit dark.
  • Was Once a Man: ... maybe....
    • It's confirmed in Building Toward a Dream, part two, that they're at least mortal, but with every victim they suck the fear and despair out of, whatever transformation ate half their face is slowly progressing toward the rest of them.
      • Fridge Horror: Orchestrating the nightmarish death of a king and the massacre of the entire city only ate away a few specks of their cheek. So about the rest of their face...
  • Your Worst Nightmare

Vronos

"I swore an oath to you [Avacyn], even unto death. I hold to it still. Name your charge."

Vronos is or, was an Inquisitor from Innistrad, who hunted all sorts of undead horrors and werewolves for the sake of protecting innocents. When he was resting after his shift on a patrol, he was attacked by several werewolves, which tore up his face and ignited his spark. He inadvertently planeswalked to Esper on Alara, and there, while learning to control his planeswalking power, crafted a mask of etherium to hide his shredded face. On his return to Innistrad, the angel Avacyn gave him the task of subduing the now-cursed Garruk Wildspeaker...who, as seen in the opening of DOTP'15, kills him and claims his mask as a trophy. Of course, players of the Duels of the Planeswalkers games don't know any of that about him, only knowing him as a generic avatar for their in-game profiles (as seen in the image to the right). Read all about him here.

Daretti

"Where a lesser mind sees junk, I see infinite potential."
Introduced in the 2014 Commander packs, Daretti is a goblin planeswalker hailing from the plane of Fiora. A master artificer from the Academy of Paliano, he was thought to have killed, possibly by his fellow artificer Muzzio. The truth, however, is that one of his constructs exploded during an accident which caused his spark to ignite.

Narset

"Our own selves are the greatest obstacles to enlightenment."

She was first introduced as the Khan of the Jeskai clan in the original Tarkir timeline. In the rewritten timeline she instead is a student under the elder dragon Ojutai who eventually attained the rank of master, the greatest honor attainable by Ojutai's students. Feeling uneasy at the notion that there was nothing left to learn from the dragon, she began to seek out the forgotten archives of the monasteries, despite it being forbidden under Ojutai's rule. Upon learning the true history of Tarkir, the clans, the Khans, and Ugin, her planeswalker spark ignited, opening up a myriad of possibilities and sources of knowledge to her. Ojutai then appeared to her for the last time, not to punish her, but rather compliment her for her dedication to the quest of knowledge. Narset felt vindicated by this, and now seeks to learn all the secrets of Tarkir, choosing not to leave her home plane until she has.