This entry is part 21 of 24 in the series Unexpected Results

Posted by Brian (@ChaosMTG).


So, I just happened to be playing Guild Wars while listening to this week’s episode of CommanderCast and realized I hadn’t done something flavor-heavy in a while. So, over the course of the next few weeks I’ll be working on some themed decks.

Fittingly, Guild Wars: Factions has a pair of rival factions (who would have guessed with a title like that?). Not only that, but they have to team up against a greater foe, so I have a perfect reason to bring some Archenemy in later on!
This week I’ll primarily be covering the source material and figuring out how to translate it into Magic relevant things.

Let’s start with the Kurzicks:

“To the devout Kurzicks, everything is a sign; a portent of what is to come. They find a divine message and meaning in everything they witness. This church-state is ruled by the Council of Nobles, which makes decisions and laws only after receiving counsel from the spiritual leaders, known as the Redemptors. Great Houses govern the Kurzicks, ancient families that can trace their origins into Cantha’s distant past, and beyond.

Today there are five main Houses, two of which are the most powerful and influential. It is common for the Houses to argue among themselves, but when it comes time to fight the Luxons, the Kurzicks quickly forget their internal squabbles and focus their hatred on their long-standing enemy. Since Shiro’s death and the petrification of the forest, the Kurzicks have built their elaborate homes and cathedrals directly into the fossil trunks of enormous trees that make up the forest. Kurzick culture is built on ceremony, rituals, and traditions, and this is reflected in their elaborate architecture and art.”

“Church-state”, “Council of Nobles”, “Ancient Families” these things just scream Orzhov to me, and their Gothic-inspired architecture is no different, though the fact that they live in a petrified forest might make them a bit green. I wonder how I might convey that…

Oh, hello there Kekai Kotaki, illustrator for both Guild Wars and Magic.

It seems that, for the most part, I could stick to the two Ravnica blocks and have this side covered fairly well thematically.

So, what about the Luxons?

“For a scant few seconds the storm that followed Shiro’s death wail roiled the sea, spawning waves that reached hundreds of feet into the air. An instant later, everything was frozen in place, but not because of a sudden cold front—the sea was not turned to ice. It had become solid jade. In order to survive, the Luxons had to adapt to a literally landlocked lifestyle, unable to transport goods to market or even sail to the nearby islands for fresh water. Their merchant ships had become one with the petrified ocean, and the currents that took them to farflung lands were now still as glass.

The traditionally seafaring Luxons became nomads sailing on a lifeless sea. They contrived ways to adapt their giant ships to the jade waves. They now carry out extensive jade mining operations on the frozen sea, uncovering magical oddities and precious resources made up of the petrified life embedded in the unmoving waves.

Today, the Luxons have grouped themselves into three different clans: the Serpent, the Turtle, and the Crab. To keep order, the Luxons vest authority in their Council of Elders, the ruling body that meets each year to modify and approve the “code” that all the clans will follow for the next 12 months. Although the clans often battle against one another, this is less about warfare and more about demonstrating which clan is the strongest and most powerful. These battles are usually fought by each clan’s champion, along with that champion’s elite guard. No matter how much the clans may disagree, they all come together when the Kurzicks need to be taught a lesson.”

Now comes the hard part, the Luxons don’t fall into a preexisting Magic group quite as well as the Kurzicks. As seafaring merchants, they’re solidly blue. The clan mentality is red/green; nomads are primarily white and secondary in red, with minor green outliers; and a council that approves a yearly code for the group to follow is very white/blue. So it looks like the Luxons will be white/blue at the very least. (But merchants do like giving things to people in exchange for other things… Hmm…)

Where the Kurzicks have a Gothic European theme, the Luxons naming style for the most part related to ancient Greece. Given that and the amount of local jade-faring sea life, I can definitely see taking a decent amount of Theros for use here.

Oh, they also have a decent amount of characters based on Firefly, but I don’t think I can reasonably merge that into a deck theme…

Lorthos is a giant sea creature that looks like he’s made of jade AND has Kekai Kotaki art… Definitely in for the Luxon deck!

Series NavigationUnexpected Results 031 – I have to put up an article about theme decks the day after jud got featured on dailymtg… There is no way I can live up to that level of thematic consistency. I AM UNWORTHY! >>