|Symbol description||Swirling aether|
Mark Rosewater (co-lead)|
Shawn Main (co-lead)
Scott Van Essen
by Matt Tabak
and Eli Shiffrin
|Art direction||Jeremy Jarvis|
|Release date||September 30, 2016|
|Energy counters, Vehicle, Colored artifacts|
or ability words
264 (+ 10)|
101 commons, 80 uncommons, 53 rares, 15 mythic rares, 15 basic lands plus 10 additional cards - 2 mythic planeswalkers, 2 rares, 2 uncommons, 2 commons and 2 common dual lands
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
- 1 Set details
- 2 Themes and mechanics
- 3 Cycles
- 4 Triplet
- 5 Mirrored pairs
- 6 Reprinted cards
- 7 Card comparisons
- 8 Notable cards
- 9 Preconstructed decks
- 10 References
Set details[edit | edit source]
Kaladesh contains 264 cards (15 basic lands, 101 commons, 80 uncommons, 53 rares, 15 mythic rares) and includes randomly inserted premium versions of all cards. The expansion symbol is a Far Eastern inspired floral motif, representing the aether of the plane. Kaladesh premieres Planeswalker decks, which replace Intro packs. These contain 10 additional cards that are considered to be part of the set (2 mythic planeswalkers, 2 rares, 2 uncommons, 2 commons and 2 common dual lands). These are numbered #265/264 to #274/264). The Fat pack for this set was reimagined as the Kaladesh Bundle.
Although Wizards of the Coast used the ligature Æ — the A and E combined into one letter — for aether since the beginning of the game, this was changed for Kaladesh, which features the stuff heavily. According to Blake Rasmussen, it caused way more issues than it was worth (particularly in translation). The set introduces create as a new vocabulary word. Create is used when a card or effect puts a token onto the battlefield.
Storyline[edit | edit source]
|“||Invent your Tomorrow||”|
Kaladesh (first glimpsed in Magic Origins as the birthplane of Chandra Nalaar) is a plane where natural mages are rare. Work that would be done with magic on other planes is instead accomplished through devices. The automatons, thopters, and other artifact creatures of the plane are fueled by aether, which is heavily trafficked. Artifacts are built as much for beauty as for function. Fire magic is strictly banned, and pyromancy punishable with a death sentence. Chandra returns to Kaladesh and saves her mother from her nemesis Baral. The Gatewatch unexpectedly is confronted by the scheming Tezzeret.
Pivotal story moments are now marked with Story Spotlight at the bottom of the card accompanied by an iterator and the total number of spotlight cards. They all have a planeswalker watermark to help signify that they are Story Spotlight cards. The cards that represent the Story Spotlights in Kaladesh are: Inventors' Fair, Captured by the Consulate, Deadlock Trap, Fateful Showdown and Confiscation Coup. They also refer to the new storyline url mtgstory.com.
Magic Story[edit | edit source]
|Title||Author||Release Date||Setting (plane)||Featuring|
|Homesick||Chris L'Etoile||2016-08-29||Ravnica||The Gatewatch, Lavinia, Dovin Baan|
|A Time for Innovation||Kimberly J. Kreines||2016-08-31||Kaladesh||Rashmi, Mitul, Saheeli Rai, Judge Padeem|
|Torch of Defiance||Doug Beyer||2016-09-05||Kaladesh||Chandra, Liliana, Tezzeret, Pia Nalaar|
|Renegade Prime||Mel Li||2016-09-14||Kaladesh||Pia Nalaar, Baral, Chandra, Liliana, Tezzeret, Oviya Pashiri|
|Born of Aether||Alison Luhrs||2016-09-21||Kaladesh||Yahenni, Depala, Oviya Pashiri, Chandra, Nissa|
|Bottled Up||James Wyatt||2016-09-28||Kaladesh||Oviya Pashiri, Chandra, Nissa, Baral|
|Release||Chris L'Etoile||2016-10-05||Kamigawa, Kaladesh||Ajani, Tamiyo, Vatti/Shadowblayde, Oviya Pashiri, Chandra, Nissa|
|In This Very Arena||Doug Beyer||2016-10-12||Ravnica, Kaladesh||Tezzeret, Pia Nalaar, the Gatewatch, Ajani|
|A Grateful Consulat||James Wyatt||2016-10-19||Kaladesh||Tezzeret, Dovin Baan|
Marketing[edit | edit source]
Kaladesh is sold in 16-card boosters (one card being a marketing card), two planeswalker decks, the Kaladesh bundle, a Deck Builder's Toolkit, Booster Battle Packs and a Gift Box. The boosters feature artwork from Saheeli Rai, Dovin Baan, Demon of Dark Schemes, Chandra, Torch of Defiance and Angel of Invention. Prerelease Events took place on September 24, 2016. In addition to the normal spindown life counter and stamped premium foil promo card, Prerelease Packs contain a little make-your-own-thopter insert.
Kaladesh Inventions[edit | edit source]
Building on the success of the Zendikar Expeditions, Wizards of the Coast expanded the product in the Masterpiece Series. For the Kaladesh Block they are called Kaladesh Inventions. These are all premium foil cards with a special Kaladeshi card frame and a separate expansion symbol. Thus, they are not part of the set. Kaladesh Inventions are all artifacts, include all new art and flavor text set on Kaladesh and appear slightly more often than premium mythic rares. These cards are playable in limited and formats where they're already legal. There are 30 Invention cards appearing with Kaladesh and 24 more cards appear in Aether Revolt.
Promotional Cards[edit | edit source]
- Prerelease: a stamped card that can be any rare or mythic rare from the set.
- Launch promo: Saheeli's Artistry
- Game Day: full-art Essence Extraction
- Game Day (Top 8): full-art Cultivator of Blades
- Buy-a-Box: Skyship Stalker
Holiday Buy-a-Box Promotion[edit | edit source]
- A premium card from a currently legal Standard set (excluding Oath of the Gatewatch and double-faced cards, but including Zendikar Expeditions and Kaladesh Inventions).
- Two non-premium cards that are either rare or a mythic rare from a Battle for Zendikar through Kaladesh.
This content is the same as that of the previously announced Standard Showdown packs.
Tokens and emblems[edit | edit source]
- 6/6 Beast for Architect of the Untamed
- */* Construct for Metallurgic Summonings and Oviya Pashiri, Sage Lifecrafter
- */* Construct
- 1/1 Servo for any card with fabricate as well as Animation Module, Cogworker's Puzzleknot, Master Trinketeer and Oviya Pashiri, Sage Lifecrafter
- 1/1 Servo
- 1/1 Servo
- 1/1 Thopter with flying for Experimental Aviator, Pia Nalaar, Whirlermaker, Whirler Virtuoso
- 1/1 Thopter with flying
- 1/1 Thopter with flying
- Emblem for Chandra, Torch of Defiance
- Emblem for Nissa, Vital Force
- Emblem for Dovin Baan
Energy counter token cards were inadvertently omitted from the initial print run of Kaladesh. They do appear in subsequent print runs, such as Kaladesh boosters included in Aether Revolt prerelease packs.
Misprints[edit | edit source]
Two cards exclusive to the Nissa Planeswalker Deck had their illustration credit swapped.
- Guardian of the Great Conduit — miscredited to Magali Villeneuve; it should be Christine Choi.
- Terrain Elemental — miscredited to Christine Choi; it should be Magali Villeneuve.
Themes and mechanics[edit | edit source]
- Crew — a keyword ability that enables vehicles to become artifact creatures until end of turn.  To activate the crew ability, tap any number of creatures you control with total power equal to or greater than the crew number. Because the crew ability doesn't use the tap symbol, you can tap any untapped creature you control, even one that just entered the battlefield. You can even tap an animated Vehicle to crew another Vehicle.
- Fabricate — when a creature with Fabricate enters the battlefield you may put a number of +1/+1 counters on the creature, or create a number of 1/1 colorless Servo artifact creature tokens. The number after fabricate tells you how many +1/+1 counters or Servos you get.
Energy counters (marked with an ) are a new resource, placed on players in form of a counter. They are used to pay the cost to activate abilities. Energy counters represent aether, a magical energy that is found throughout the Multiverse, and is an integral part of the ecosystem on Kaladesh. Most cards that give you energy counters also give you a way to spend them. Energy counters that you get from one card can be saved up and spent on abilities of other cards. Energy counters don't go away as phases or steps end, or as the turn ends. The only way for you to lose them is to spend them.
Card types[edit | edit source]
Card frame[edit | edit source]
Cycles[edit | edit source]
Kaladesh has six cycles:
- Enemy-colored Fast lands: A new set of enemy colored taplands was introduced, finishing the cycle started in Scars of Mirrodin. — Concealed Courtyard (), Spirebluff Canal (), Blooming Marsh (), Inspiring Vantage (), Botanical Sanctum ().
- Gearhulks: Five mythic colored artifact with MM in their mana cost, each of which has a keyword ability and an Enter the battlefield effect — Cataclysmic Gearhulk (), Torrential Gearhulk (), Noxious Gearhulk (), Combustible Gearhulk (), Verdurous Gearhulk ().
- Two-colored draft archetypes: Ten uncommon cards which each represent a two-colored draft archetype. — Cloudblazer (), Contraband Kingpin (), Unlicensed Disintegration (), Voltaic Brawler (), Engineered Might (), Restoration Gearsmith (), Hazardous Conditions (), Empyreal Voyager (), Whirler Virtuoso (), and Veteran Motorist ().
- Puzzleknots: Five common colorless artifact with a cost of , each of which has an enters the battlefield effect that can be repeated by spending 2M or 1M (depending on the knot) and sacrificing it — Cogworker's Puzzleknot (), Glassblower's Puzzleknot (), Metalspinner's Puzzleknot (), Fireforger's Puzzleknot (), Woodweaver's Puzzleknot ().
- Thriving creatures: Five common creatures that enter the battlefield with two energy counters and may pay two energy counters to get a +1/+1 counter — Thriving Ibex (), Thriving Turtle (), Thriving Rats (), Thriving Grubs (), Thriving Rhino ().
- Activated artifact creatures: Five common artifact creatures that have an activated ability costing one colored mana that gives them a color-aligned keyword — Bastion Mastodon (), Dukhara Peafowl (), Prakhata Pillar-Bug (), Weldfast Monitor (), Narnam Cobra ()
Triplet[edit | edit source]
- Modules: Three artifacts that all have triggered abilities that lead into the next, in a very valuable (but not infinite) loop. The three artifacts, when all on the battlefield, are capable to produce a servo, one energy and a +1/+1 counter for one mana, as long as the player can cause one of the modules to trigger in the first place; for example playing a creature to trigger Decoction Module or activating Consulate Turret to trigger Fabrication Module. Note that having multiple Decoction Modules multiplies the output of energy and +1/+1 counters per mana, as does Fabrication Module, except only with +1/+1 counters. (Having multiple Animation Modules does not provide any benefit.) The modules have activated abilities that can get the cycle started by themselves, but they are relatively expensive to activate. After the cycle has started, however, any amount of mana can be paid to get that many of each resource. The art is continous and the flavor texts refer to each other. — Animation Module, Fabrication Module, Decoction Module 
Mirrored pairs[edit | edit source]
Kaladesh has two mirrored pairs:
- Live Fast and Die Young: Two black cards which names form a famous unofficial slogan of rock&roll and punk subcultures. These cards also represent a short life of aetherborn and have a synergy between them
- Built to Last and Built to Smash: A white and a red combat trick respectively, each giving a boost to target creature and indestructible or trample respectively if it's an artifact. The art and flavour text both appear to be in sequence as well.
Reprinted cards[edit | edit source]
- Aether Tradewinds, first printed in Worldwake, last seen in Conspiracy.
- Chief of the Foundry, first printed in Magic Origins.
- Creeping Mold, first printed in Visions, last seen in 10th Edition.
- Demolish, first printed in Odyssey, last seen in Magic Origins.
- Diabolic Tutor, first printed in Odyssey, last seen in Conspiracy: Take the Crown.
- Hunt the Weak, first printed in Magic 2014, last seen in Dragons of Tarkir.
- Inspired Charge, first printed in Magic 2011, last seen in Battle for Zendikar.
- Mind Rot, first printed in Portal, last seen in Magic Origins.
- Pressure Point, first printed in Fate Reforged.
- Wind Drake, first printed in Portal, last seen in Dragon's Maze.
- Prophetic Prism, first printed in Rise of the Eldrazi, last seen in Gatecrash.
Uncommon to Common[edit | edit source]
- Stone Quarry (Planeswalker decks), first printed in Shadows over Innistrad
- Woodland Stream (Planeswalker decks), first printed in Shadows over Innistrad
Functional Reprints[edit | edit source]
- Chandra's Pyrohelix is a functional reprint of Twin Bolt.
- Commencement of Festivities is a functional reprint of Defend the Hearth.
- Curio Vendor is a functional reprint of Coral Eel, Coral Merfolk, Jhessian Lookout, Wetland Sambar, and Wu Infantry.
- Flame Lash is a functional reprint of Lightning Blast.
- Tasseled Dromedary is a functional reprint of Yoked Ox.
- Terror of the Fairgrounds is a functional reprint of Cobblebrute and Hulking Devil.
Card comparisons[edit | edit source]
Notable cards[edit | edit source]
2017-2018 Bannings[edit | edit source]
- Smuggler's Copter is an artifact vehicle which allowed for blisteringly fast attacks on turn 3 which providing card advantage at a low cost. It was banned alongside Emrakul, the Promised End (from Eldritch Moon) and Reflector Mage (from Oath of the Gatewatch) on January 9th 2017 in an attempt to fix and increase the variety of standard decks. The success of this was questionable, due to the events described below.
- Saheeli Rai was seen originally as a below-par, Johnny-centric planeswalker that was the face of the set. However, with the release of a complementary card in Felidar Guardian in Aether Revolt, a two-card instant-kill combo known as Copy Cat was now present in Standard, and one that R&D had not foreseen. A perfected decklist, formed in the later stages of Aether Revolt standard, was powerful enough that only one realistic counter-deck of Mardu Vehicles could stand against the combo. Adding to this the fact that R&D did not have the deck in playtesting, and it would take eighteen months to rotate, meant that Felidar Guardian needed to be banned.
- Aetherworks Marvel was the centrepiece of Marvel, a standard deck based on collecting large reserves of energy and using them to freecast high-impact, expensive spells on turn 4. Thought to be the premiere combo deck in Pro Tour Kaladesh, the all-in version proved to be unreliable and easily disrupted. An aggro-hybrid version emerged in the later stages of the Kaladesh standard, but due to the bannings of Emrakul, the Promised End and the superior combo of Copy Cat, the Marvel strategy was suppressed until the banning of Felidar Guardian after the release of Amonkhet. While the deck was not overwhelming unlike Copy Cat, the experience of occasionally losing on the fourth turn through Ulamog, the Ceaseless Hunger proved to be damaging to Standard, leading to the ban of Marvel on June 14th 2017.
- Following rotation and the release of Ixalan, the new Tribal set did not instil any amount of creativity into the meta-game, with the disruptable synergies not coming close to base-rate cards in the Energy or mono-Red decks. Analysis from the Magic Online results showed that the Red deck had absurdly good matchups against anything in the format that was not Energy-based, resulting in a similar field to the Mardu vs Saheeli duality after Aether Revolt. These results were cited for the bannings in January 2018; Attune with Aether was chosen alongside Rogue Refiner to be banned to weaken the Energy deck, while Ramunup Ruins and Rampaging Ferocidon were banned from the Ramunup Red deck.
Preconstructed decks[edit | edit source]
Kaladesh has two planeswalker decks:
|Nissa||U||G||Nissa, Nature's Artisan|
References[edit | edit source]
- Product Information
- Wizards of the Coast. (May 16, 2016.) “Announcement Day”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 12, 2016.) “The Basic Lands of Kaladesh”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast. (September 16, 2016.) “Kaladesh Release Notes”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (May 16, 2016.) “Ramp of Approval”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (May 16, 2016.) “The May 16, 2016 Update”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 26, 2016.) "Can you talk about the changed wording ("Create a token...") on the recently revealed FNM promo?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Matt Tabak. (September 2, 2016.) “Kaladesh Mechanics”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Eli Shiffrin. (September 30, 2016.) “Kaladesh Update Bulletin”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Doug Beyer. (June 11 2015.) "Many players have noticed...", A Voice for Vorthos, Tumblr.
- Magic Creative Team. (July 9, 2015.) “The Worlds of Magic Origins”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Doug Beyer. (June 10, 2015.) “Chandra's Origin: Fire Logic”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Chas Andres. (November 16, 2016.) “Recapping the Kaladesh Story”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Kimberly J. Kreines, Alison Luhrs and Chris Peeler. (November 23, 2016.) “Messages from the Consulate”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 05, 2016.) "What is the significance of the watermark on Inventors' Fair?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Magic Creative Team. (November 2, 2016.) “Planeswalker's Guide to Kaladesh”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Kaladesh Product information for retailers
- Gavin Verhey. (September 19, 2016.) “Kaladesh Prerelease Primer”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 6, 2016.) “Kaladesh Packaging, Promos, and Planeswalker Decks”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 12, 2016.) “Masterpiece Series”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast. (September 12, 2016.) “Masterpiece Series: Kaladesh Inventions”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (November 21, 2016.) “Magic Holiday Gift Guide and Holiday Buy-a-Box Promotion”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Blake Rasmussen. (September 15, 2016.) “The Tokens of Kaladesh”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast. (September 15, 2016.) “Energy Counter Token”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Trick Jarrett. (January 7, 2017.) Yes, and so will Kaladesh boosters in pre-prerelease packs. Community Manager's twitter account.
- Mark Rosewater. (August 29, 2016.) “State of Design 2016”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (August 29, 2016.) "How many mechanics there are total in Kaladesh?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 19, 2016.) “Kaladesh Ingredients, Part 2”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Matt Tabak. (September 2, 2016.) “Kaladesh Mechanics”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 04, 2016.) "I just noticed there's no returning mechanic in Kaladesh. Is this a new paradigm?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 09, 2016.) "Why didn't the "if you have 3 or more artifacts" cards just use "Metalcraft -" instead?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 5, 2016.) “Kaladesh Ingredients, Part 1”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 03, 2016.) "Why were Vehicles given a new border when other Subtypes don't have unique ones?", Blogatog, Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater. (September 26, 2016.) “"Do You Feel Lucky, Aetherpunk?" Part 1”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Meghan Wolff. (September 6, 2016.) “Madcap Modules”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.