Khans of Tarkir
|Khans of Tarkir|
|Swords crossed on a shield|
|Mark Rosewater (lead)|
Mark L. Gottlieb
and Ken Nagle
|Erik Lauer (lead)|
and Adam Prosak
with contributions from Matt Tabak
|September 26, 2014|
Themes and mechanics
Keywords and/or ability words
|Delve, Ferocious, Morph, Outlast, Prowess, Raid|
101 Commons, 80 Uncommons, 53 Rares, 15 Mythic Rares, 20 Basic Land
|Khans of Tarkir block sets|
|Khans of Tarkir||Fate Reforged||Dragons of Tarkir|
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
|Duel Decks: Speed vs. Cunning||Khans of Tarkir||Commander 2014|
- 1 Set details
- 2 Themes and mechanics
- 3 Cycles
- 4 Mirrored pairs
- 5 Reprinted cards
- 6 Preconstructed decks
- 7 References
Set details[edit | edit source]
|“||Raise your Banner||”|
Khans of Tarkir is part of the Khans of Tarkir block, which is Large-Small-Large with a unique draft structure (the small set is drafted with both large sets, but the large sets are never drafted together)  and a time traveling element. The draft structure is the first thing from which Khans of Tarkir set was built. 
Khans of Tarkir contains 269 cards (20 basic lands, 101 commons, 80 uncommons, 53 rares, 15 mythic rares), and includes randomly inserted premium versions of all cards. It is also the first set since Dragon's Maze to not have any Dragon creature cards. The expansion symbol depicts crossed swords on a shield, similar to the symbol of Legions.
Storyline[edit | edit source]
Tarkir is a world embattled with ambitious warlords and powerful clans that wage eternal war for supremacy of their plane, a conflict that spans over a thousand years. Tarkir is also the home plane of Sarkhan Vol. It was previously inhabited by dragons, all of whom were killed before Sarkhan's period of servitude.  The clans each worship one aspect of the extinct dragons. 
The clans[edit | edit source]
|The Abzan Houses||Endurance||Outlast||Scale of the dragon||Anafenza, the Foremost|
|The Jeskai Way||Cunning||Prowess||Eye of the dragon||Narset, Enlightened Master|
|The Sultai Brood||Ruthlessness||Delve||Fang of the dragon||Sidisi, Brood Tyrant|
|The Mardu Horde||Speed||Raid||Wing of the dragon||Zurgo Helmsmasher|
|The Temur Frontier||Savagery||Ferocious||Claw of the dragon||Surrak Dragonclaw|
Notice that while the shards of Alara were centered around the color that had both allies, the wedges of Tarkir are not built around the color that has the two enemies. When the design team built the clans to match the flavor of the dragon attributes and the creative take on the clans, they found that they centered not on the enemy color but one of the ally colors. It was said that everything worked so naturally, that they felt it was best to leave it be and not force it another way.  By shifting the mana costs such that the enemy pairs were sitting next to each other in mana costs, it became a little easier to recognize that each wedge was made up of two enemy-color combinations.  When the third set of the block was released, it became clear that the parallel of the alternate timeline clans were ally-colored. This was achieved by dropping the enemy color and appeared to be the real reason that the wedges of Khans were centered on an ally color.  
The clans are recognized by the use of watermarks on the cards.
Marketing[edit | edit source]
A preview of the set's artwork was aired during Pro Tour Journey into Nyx, following the quarterfinal rounds.  In it Mark Rosewater (Magic head designer) announced the return of something "that people have been asking [ Wizards ] to do for quite a while [...] after a long absence from magic" as well as the introduction of something that has been requested for a long time but had never been done before. These elements turned out to be morph and wedges, respectively, when the set was previewed at San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday, July 26, 2014. Mark Rosewater moderated a panel featuring Mark Purvis (Magic director of global brand marketing), Doug Beyer (Magic senior creative designer), and Gavin Verhey (Magic designer).   .
Khans of Tarkir is sold in 16-card boosters (one card being a marketing card), five intro packs, one event deck and a fat pack. The boosters feature artwork from Sidisi, Brood Tyrant, Narset, Enlightened Master, Unyielding Krumar, War-Name Aspirant and Dragon Grip.  As of Khans of Tarkir, the face cards in Intro Packs will not just be premium rare cards, but alternate art premium rare cards that won't be found in booster packs. 
Prerelease[edit | edit source]
The Khans of Tarkir prerelease encourages the player to affiliate with their clan.  You choose your clan for the prerelease. Each clan prerelease pack comes with a clan button and a clan sticker. The prerelease pack further contains 5 regular booster packs, 1 seeded booster pack, 1 premium promo card, 1 clan information card, 1 activity insert and 1 Spindown life counter. Khans of Tarkir will feature 40 prerelease cards — one dated and stamped prerelease card random from a pool of eight for each Clan pack. One of which will be the Khan. "Raise your banner": when a game is won, players can put their sticker on the clan banner in the store, to show off how many battles each clan has won. 
Promotional cards[edit | edit source]
- Launch promo: Dragon Throne of Tarkir 
- Game Day: full-art Heir of the Wilds
- Game Day (Top 8): full-art Utter End
- Buy-a-Box: Rattleclaw Mystic
- Prerelease, one of forty according to the chosen clan:
Tokens, emblems and overlay cards[edit | edit source]
The sixteenth card in the boosters can be a token, emblem or overlay card, with an advertisement on the back side. The overlay card can be used on face-down Morph cards to remind players of their power and toughness and that it can be turned face-up for its Morph cost.  
- 3/4 Bird for Wingmate Roc
- 1/1 Spirit with Flying for Abzan Ascendancy
- 1/1 Warrior for Herald of Anafenza, Mardu Charm, Mardu Hordechief and Take Up Arms
- 1/1 Warrior (alternate art) for the same
- 2/2 Vampire with Flying for Sorin, Solemn Visitor
- 2/2 Zombie for Sidisi, Brood Tyrant and Empty the Pits
- 1/1 Goblin for Goblinslide, Hordeling Outburst, Mardu Ascendancy and Ponyback Brigade
- 4/4 Bear for Bear's Companion
- 1/1 Snake for Hooded Hydra and Rite of the Serpent
- */* Spirit Warrior for Kin-Tree Invocation
- Morph overlay card
- Emblem for Sarkhan, the Dragonspeaker
- Emblem for Sorin, Solemn Visitor
Themes and mechanics[edit | edit source]
- The Abzan keyword is Outlast ((cost), : Put a +1/+1 counter on this creature. Outlast only as a sorcery.). Cards may have an additional ability whenever you activate the outlast ability.
- The Jeskai keyword is Prowess: (whenever you cast a noncreature spell, this creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn).
- The Sultai keyword is the alternative payment method Delve, introduced in Future Sight (changed, like convoke, from previous rules as a cost reduction): (Each card you exile from your graveyard while casting this spell pays for ). 
- The Mardu ability word Raid and related cards are all based around a very fast, aggressive strategy for winning. Raid gives an advantageous effect if you have attacked with a creature the same turn.
- The Temur ability word is Ferocious, which gives the player an advantageous effect if they control a creature with power 4 or greater while attacking with a creature with Ferocious or casting a spell with it.
Phooey and "Borph"[edit | edit source]
During design, an alternate version of Khans of Tarkir (nicknamed "Phooey" ) was considered. It featured a new mechanic that was very similar to morph but instead of three mana to cast the 2/2 face-down creature it cost two mana. R&D nicknamed that mechanic "borph" as in "bear morph" because Bears are slang for a vanilla 2/2 with a converted mana cost of 2.  With some modifications, "borph" eventually became the effect megamorph for Dragons of Tarkir.
Cycles[edit | edit source]
Khans of Tarkir has twelve cycles.
- Khans: five mythic rare legendary creatures that have a cost that includes MNO, where MNO are wedge colors — Anafenza, the Foremost, Narset, Enlightened Master, Sidisi, Brood Tyrant, Zurgo Helmsmasher, and Surrak Dragonclaw.
- Allied color fetch lands: five rare lands that can be sacrificed along with a payment of 1 life to search for a land with one of two basic land types. Reprinted from Onslaught. — Flooded Strand, Polluted Delta, Bloodstained Mire, Wooded Foothills, and Windswept Heath.
- Ascendancies: five rare enchantments costing MNO — Abzan Ascendancy, Jeskai Ascendancy, Sultai Ascendancy, Mardu Ascendancy, and Temur Ascendancy.
- Rare wedge-colored creatures: five rare creatures that cost 2MNO, where MNO are wedge colors, and have a repeatable triggered ability. — Ivorytusk Fortress, Sage of the Inward Eye, Rakshasa Vizier, Ankle Shanker, and Avalanche Tusker.
- Reveal Morphers: five uncommon creatures with morph that can be turned face up by revealing a card of the same color and have a turned-face-up ability — Watcher of the Roost, Dragon's Eye Savants, Ruthless Ripper, Horde Ambusher, and Temur Charger. 
- Wedgelands: five uncommon triple lands that come into play tapped and can be tapped for one of three colors of mana. These are a wedge version of Shards of Alara's shardlands — Sandsteppe Citadel, Mystic Monastery, Opulent Palace, Nomad Outpost, and Frontier Bivouac 
- Charms: five uncommon instants that cost MNO and have three modes — Abzan Charm, Jeskai Charm, Sultai Charm, Mardu Charm, and Temur Charm.
- Uncommon wedge-colored creatures: five uncommon creatures that cost 2MNO, where MNO are wedge colors. All but one of them have enter-the-battlefield abilities. — Armament Corps, Warden of the Eye, Sultai Soothsayer, Mardu Roughrider, and Bear's Companion.
- Banners: these five common artifacts costing reproduce the Dragon's Maze cycle of cluestones, producing any of three enemy colors of mana and sacrifice for them to draw a card — Abzan Banner, Jeskai Banner, Sultai Banner, Mardu Banner, and Temur Banner. 
- Common wedge-colored morphers: five common creatures that cost 3MNO and has a morph cost of 2MNO, where MNO are wedge colors. — Abzan Guide, Efreet Weaponmaster, Abomination of Gudul, Ponyback Brigade, and Snowhorn Rider.
- Life-gain Taplands: ten common lands that enter the battlefield tapped, gain the controller one life and can tap for 2 different colors of mana. The allied color ones are functional reprints of the Refuge cycle in Zendikar.  — Tranquil Cove, Dismal Backwater, Bloodfell Caves, Rugged Highlands, Blossoming Sands, Scoured Barrens, Swiftwater Cliffs, Jungle Hollow, Wind-Scarred Crag, and Thornwood Falls
- Enemy-colored commons: ten common cards that have an ability that requires an enemy color. — Mardu Hateblade, Scaldkin, Kheru Dreadmaw, Leaping Master, Smoke Teller, Unyielding Krumar, Bloodfire Mentor, Archers' Parapet, Firehoof Cavalry, and Embodiment of Spring.
- Enemy-colored uncommons double-cycle: five pairs of enemy coloured cards, each flavored one apiece per clan of these colors. — Chief of the Edge and Chief of the Scale, Master the way and Winterflame, Kin-Tree Invocation and Death Frenzy, Ride Down and Highspire Mantis, and Icefeather Aven and Secret Plans.
Mirrored pairs[edit | edit source]
- Chiefs: Chief of the Edge and Chief of the Scale are two Warriors which cost . They have mirrored stats (3/2 vs. 2/3) and bonuses (+1/+0 vs. +0/+1) that they grant to other warriors you control.
Reprinted cards[edit | edit source]
- Act of Treason, first printed in Magic 2010, last seen in Duel Decks: Speed vs. Cunning.
- Arc Lightning, first printed in Urza's Saga, last seen in Planechase (2009).
- Bloodstained Mire, first printed in Onslaught.
- Cancel, first printed in Time Spiral, last seen in Magic 2015.
- Crippling Chill, first printed in Avacyn Restored.
- Despise, first printed in New Phyrexia.
- Erase, first printed in Urza's Legacy, last seen in Magic 2013.
- Flooded Strand, first printed in Onslaught.
- Incremental Growth, first printed in Lorwyn, last seen in Modern Masters.
- Naturalize, first printed in Onslaught, last seen in Magic 2015.
- Polluted Delta, first printed in Onslaught.
- Seek the Horizon, first printed in Saviors of Kamigawa, last seen in Return to Ravnica.
- Shatter, first printed in Alpha, last seen in Scars of Mirrodin.
- Smite the Monstrous, first printed in Innistrad, last seen in Duel Decks: Heroes vs. Monsters.
- Trumpet Blast, first printed in Urza's Destiny, last seen in Conspiracy.
- Windstorm, first printed in Magic 2010, last seen in Magic 2014.
- Windswept Heath, first printed in Onslaught.
- Wooded Foothills, first printed in Onslaught.
Colorshifted[edit | edit source]
Functional reprints[edit | edit source]
- Alabaster Kirin is a functional reprint of Armored Griffin.
- Bloodfell Caves is a functional reprint of Akoum Refuge.
- Blossoming Sands is a functional reprint of Graypelt Refuge.
- Dismal Backwater is a functional reprint of Jwar Isle Refuge.
- Dutiful Return is a functional reprint of March of the Returned.
- Kill Shot is a functional reprint of Rebuke.
- Summit Prowler is a functional reprint of Lowland Giant, Ogre Resister, Shatterskull Giant and Borderland Minotaur, save for creature types.
- Rugged Highlands is a functional reprint of Kazandu Refuge.
- Throttle is a functional reprint of Lash of the Whip.
- Tranquil Cove is a functional reprint of Sejiri Refuge.
Strictly better[edit | edit source]
- Alpine Grizzly is strictly better than Elvish Ranger.
- Brave the Sands is strictly better than Serra's Blessing.
- Despise is strictly better than Ostracize.
- Dragon's Eye Savants is strictly better than Murmuring Phantasm, unless Defender is relevant.
- Icefeather Aven is strictly better than Gaea's Skyfolk.
- Monastery Swiftspear is strictly better than Raging Goblin, unless the Goblin creature type is relevant (e.g. Goblin Grenade or Goblin Piledriver).
- Mystic of the Hidden Way is strictly better than Covert Operative.
- Roar of Challenge is strictly better than Alluring Scent and Taunting Challenge.
- Rotting Mastodon is strictly better than Catacomb Slug.
- Ruthless Ripper is strictly better than Typhoid Rats and Pharika's Chosen.
- Tormenting Voice is strictly better than Wild Guess.
Strictly worse[edit | edit source]
- Awaken the Bear is strictly worse than Predator's Strike.
- Debilitating Injury is strictly worse than Dead Weight (but strictly better than Enfeeblement).
- Siegecraft is strictly worse than Improvised Armor.
- Suspension Field is strictly worse than Journey to Nowhere.
- Waterwhirl is strictly worse than Quicksilver Geyser, except for cases in which lands are also creatures.
Preconstructed decks[edit | edit source]
Intro packs[edit | edit source]
|Intro pack name||Colors included||Foil rare|
|Abzan Siege||W||B||G||Ivorytusk Fortress|
|Jeskai Monks||W||U||R||Sage of the Inward Eye|
|Sultai Schemers||U||B||G||Rakshasa Vizier|
|Mardu Raiders||W||B||R||Ankle Shanker|
|Temur Avalanche||U||R||G||Avalanche Tusker|
Event deck[edit | edit source]
|Event deck name||Colors included|
References[edit | edit source]
- Printed on the card frame.
- Product info
- Wizards of the Coast. ( May 19, 2014.) “Announcing Khans of Tarkir”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2014.) "What do you mean by "small set is drafted with both large sets"?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2014.) "How early in Tarkir Block design was the unique Large-Small-Large draft format set in stone?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 8, 2014.) “Tarkir, Basically”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (August 25, 2014.) “Metamorphosis”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast. (September 1, 2014 .) “Khans of Tarkir Trailer Video”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Creative Team. (September 3, 2014.) “Planeswalker's Guide to Khans of Tarkir, Part 1”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2014.) "Can you tell us about which color each clan is focused on?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- MTG Talk. (July 26, 2014.) "The five clans!", MTG Talk, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 1, 2014.) “Khan Do Attitude, Part 1”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 8, 2014.) “Khan Do Attitude, Part 2”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (March 2, 2015.) “Imagine Dragons, Part 1”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (May 27, 2015.) "Can you finally tell us why the clans were centered in an ally color?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Magic: The Gathering (May 18, 2014). Announcing Khans of Tarkir.
- Blake Rasmussen. (July 11, 2014.) “San Diego Comic-Con 2014”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast (YouTube) (July 26, 2014). Magic Panel at SDCC.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2014.) "All The Goods From The Panel, Part 1", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 2, 2014.) “Khans of Tarkir Packaging”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Dan Barrett. (August 15, 2014.) “Revealed at Gamescom”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Gavin Verhey. (September 15, 2014.) “Khans of Tarkir Prerelease Primer”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2014.) "All The Goods From The Panel, Part 2", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 4, 2014.) “Khans of Tarkir Promos”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Matt Tabak. (August 31, 2014.) “Mechanics of Khans of Tarkir”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 10, 2014.) “Tokens of Tarkir”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Sam Stoddard. (September 12, 2014.) “Developing Khans of Tarkir”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Sam Stoddard. (September 5, 2014.) “Delving the Pits”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (December 31, 2014.) "Any trivia on my favourite theme, tribal?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (May 11, 2015.) “Phooey”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Marshall Sutcliffe. (September 3, 2014.) “Five Little Morphlings”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 5, 2014.) “The Khans of Tarkir Tri-Lands”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 9, 2014.) “Raise Your Banner”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Erik Lauer. (September 8, 2014.) “Developing Khans”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 18, 2014.) “Khans of Tarkir Intro Pack Decklists”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 23, 2014.) “Khans of Tarkir Event Deck Decklist”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.