How To Use Planeswalkers In Magic The Gathering


dynamic Magic the Gathering scene with two planeswalkers engaged in a fierce duel, spells colliding in mid-air, showcasing their unique abilities and power, surrounded by a mystical battlefield filled with floating islands and ancient ruins

Are you finding it challenging to maximize your Planeswalkers’ abilities in Magic: The Gathering? With their unique mechanics and valuable role in gameplay, understanding and optimizing the use of these cards can be a game-changer.

This comprehensive guide will provide clear guidance on harnessing the power of Planeswalkers, from choosing the perfect one for your deck to mastering when to activate their abilities. Ready to level up your MTG game? Let’s dive in.

Key Takeaways

  • Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering are powerful cards that function as unique characters with their own set of abilities and loyalty counters.
  • Understanding how to manipulate the loyalty counters strategically is essential to maximize the use of a planeswalker’s abilities.
  • Protecting your planeswalkers from being attacked by utilizing creatures, spells, and strategic positioning is crucial for maintaining an advantage on the battlefield.
  • Maximizing loyalty counters is key to making the most out of planeswalkers’ abilities, which can be achieved through protection spells, extra loyalty counter cards, or removing enemy planeswalker counters.

Understanding Planeswalkers In Magic: The Gathering

Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering are powerful cards that function as unique characters with their own set of abilities and loyalty counters.

How Do Planeswalker Cards Work?

Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering are a game-changer. They’re not your average cards – they function more like allies, with their powers and abilities that can radically tilt the battlefield in your favor.

As soon as a Planeswalker card enters the field, it comes equipped with pre-set loyalty counters, denoting both its health and willingness to aid you in your quest for victory.

Activating a Planeswalker’s unique abilities often involves spending or gaining these vital loyalty counters. Think of each counter as currency; an investment into harnessing their extraordinary skills.

However, beware of incoming attacks specifically targeted at your Planeswalkers by shrewd opponents – if a Planeswalker’s loyalty counters plummet to zero, they meet their demise and join other fallen comrades in the graveyard.

On that note, deploying strategic defenses for your Planeswalkers is paramount. Not only do they exhibit complexity-drenched gameplay dynamics but also add an extra layer of strategic depth to MTG matches – making them quite the valuable asset! Their introduction into the fray catalyzes an onset of tactical decision-making scenarios even seasoned players need time adjusting to! So remember, understanding how exactly these heavyweight champions operate forms the foundation towards establishing supremacy on any MTG battleground!

Loyalty Abilities And How To Use Them

Mastering the use of loyalty abilities is an essential skill in piloting Planeswalkers across Magic: The Gathering (MTG) games. A plane to remember, each planeswalker card arrives on the battlefield flaunting a starting loyalty number—think of it as their willingness to fight for your cause.

To harness their powers, you must understand how to manipulate these loyalty counters strategically. Adding or subtracting counts activates a planeswalker’s unique abilties—be it generating tokens, direct damage, life gain or card draw! Think twice before you rush though; only one ability can be activated per turn and only during your main phase when the stack is empty.

Play smart—these powerful spells could turn the tides of battle in your favor!

Planeswalkers And Combat

Navigating through a crowd of towering beasts and mystical creatures, your Planeswalker enters the battlefield with bravado. In Magic: The Gathering, you can use these iconic characters as strategic chess pieces in the heat of combat.

Contrary to popular belief, they don’t swing swords or shoot arrows themselves but are considered separate players on your side. Opponents can decide whether to attack you directly or set their sights on your deployed Planeswalker instead.

It’s important to note that any damage dealt decreases the loyalty counters on your Planeswalker equivalent to the amount dealt. Masterfully employing creatures and spells to protect these valuable assets thus becomes an integral part of game strategy.

So keep those defenses high and strike when opportunity arises!

Alternate Casting Costs For Planeswalkers

Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering not only have powerful loyalty abilities, but they can also be cast using alternate casting costs. This means that instead of paying their regular mana cost, you can sometimes pay a different cost or meet specific conditions to bring them onto the battlefield.

These alternative costs are often tied to the unique abilities of the Planeswalker card and can vary from card to card. It’s important to carefully consider these options when building your deck or planning your gameplay strategy, as they can offer exciting and unexpected ways to deploy your Planeswalkers and take control of the game.

Using Planeswalkers In Commander Format

Learn how to maximize the potential of Planeswalkers in Commander format and dominate your opponents with their unique abilities.

How Many Planeswalkers Can You Have In Your Commander Deck?

In Commander format, you can have multiple planeswalkers in your deck, but there is no set limit. However, keep in mind that your deck must consist of 99 cards, and each card must be unique (excluding basic lands).

So while you can include as many planeswalkers as you want within these constraints, it’s important to strike a balance between having enough planeswalkers to support your strategy and including other essential cards like creatures, spells, and mana sources.

This ensures that your deck remains versatile and capable of handling various situations on the battlefield. As always with Commander format, it’s all about finding the right balance for your playstyle!

Special Rules For Using Planeswalkers As Commanders

  • In the Commander format of Magic: The Gathering, a player’s commander must be either a legendary creature or a planeswalker.
  • Planeswalker Commanders require a different approach when it comes to brewing and playing decks.
  • There used to be special rules allowing planeswalkers to be used as commanders, even without the card saying so.
  • However, the official Commander/EDH site’s rules state that players must choose a legendary creature as the “Commander” for their deck.
  • Despite this, planeswalkers are now officially legal as Commanders, but only as exceptions to the rule.

Strategies For Using Planeswalkers

Learn how to maximize your planeswalker’s loyalty counters, protect them from being attacked, and utilize their abilities effectively in order to gain the upper hand in Magic: The Gathering gameplay.

Maximizing Loyalty Counters

To maximize the effectiveness of your planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering, it’s crucial to understand how to maximize their loyalty counters. Loyalty counters are like fuel for your planeswalker’s abilities, so you want to keep them as high as possible.

One way to do this is by using protection spells or creatures that can defend your planeswalkers from being attacked. Additionally, consider using cards that allow you to add extra loyalty counters or remove loyalty counters from enemy planeswalkers.

By keeping your planeswalker’s loyalty high, you’ll have more opportunities to use their powerful abilities and increase your chances of victory on the battlefield.

Protecting Your Planeswalkers

Planeswalkers are incredibly valuable assets in Magic: The Gathering, and protecting them is crucial to maintaining an advantage on the battlefield. One way to protect your planeswalkers is by using creatures with defender or reach abilities, which can serve as a defensive wall against enemy attacks.

Additionally, cards that grant hexproof or shroud can make your planeswalkers immune to targeted spells or abilities from opponents. It’s also important to consider strategic positioning during combat, utilizing blockers effectively to absorb damage and keep your planeswalkers out of harm’s way.

By prioritizing the protection of your planeswalkers, you’ll ensure they have a lasting impact on the game and secure victory for yourself!

Utilizing Planeswalker Abilities Effectively

Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering are powerful cards that can turn the tide of battle in your favor. To make the most out of these unique card types, it’s important to understand how to utilize their abilities effectively. Here are some tips for maximizing the potential of your Planeswalkers:

  1. Evaluate loyalty counters: Each Planeswalker has a set number of loyalty counters that determine their abilities. Take note of the initial loyalty counter and any additional counters gained or lost throughout the game.
  2. Plan your turns strategically: As you only have access to one ability per Planeswalker per turn, it’s crucial to plan ahead and decide which ability will be most beneficial in the current game state.
  3. Time your activations wisely: Activating a Planeswalker’s ability at the right moment can swing the game in your favor. Consider factors like your opponent’s board state, your own resources, and potential threats when deciding when to activate an ability.
  4. Protect your Planeswalkers: Since they are often high-priority targets for removal spells and attacks, it’s important to protect your Planeswalkers from harm. Utilize cards that grant hexproof or indestructibility, or consider employing creatures as blockers to keep them safe.
  5. Synergize with other cards: Build a deck that complements your Planeswalkers’ abilities. Look for cards that synergize well with their effects and create powerful combinations on the battlefield.
  6. Adapt to changing situations: Be flexible in utilizing your Planeswalkers’ abilities based on the evolving game state. Sometimes, it might be more advantageous to use an ability for defensive purposes rather than offensive ones.
  7. Take advantage of static abilities: Some Planeswalkers possess static abilities that provide ongoing benefits or restrictions on the battlefield. Make sure to consider these abilities when strategizing and take full advantage of them.
  8. Stay informed about the metagame: Keep an eye on the current metagame trends and popular deck archetypes to understand how other players are utilizing Planeswalkers. This can provide valuable insights and help you adapt your own strategies accordingly.

Exploring The Different Types Of Planeswalkers

There are various types of planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering, including single-sided planeswalkers with unique strengths, double-sided planeswalkers with their own mechanics, and multicolored and colorless planeswalkers.

Single-sided Planeswalkers And Their Strengths

Single-sided Planeswalkers are an exciting addition to the game of Magic: The Gathering, offering players the opportunity to summon powerful allies onto the battlefield. These Planeswalkers bring unique strengths and abilities that can turn the tide of any game.

Whether it’s Jace’s ability to manipulate opponents’ minds or Chandra’s fiery spells that deal damage, each single-sided Planeswalker offers a dynamic playstyle and strategic advantage. Understanding their individual strengths and how they fit into your deck is key to mastering their full potential on the battlefield.

So, get ready to harness these incredible abilities and dominate your opponents with these formidable allies at your side!

Double-sided Planeswalkers And Their Unique Mechanics

Double-sided planeswalkers are a special type of card in Magic: The Gathering that bring a whole new level of excitement to the game. These cards have two different faces, each representing a different character or form.

One side shows the planeswalker in their normal state, while the other side reveals their transformed or alternate version. What’s really cool is that these transformations happen when certain conditions are met, like gaining a specific number of loyalty counters.

This opens up endless possibilities for strategic plays and allows players to adapt to changing situations on the battlefield. With double-sided planeswalkers, you get double the fun and double the power!

Multicolored And Colorless Planeswalkers

Multicolored and colorless Planeswalkers add another layer of complexity to the game of Magic: The Gathering. These unique cards allow players to harness the power of multiple colors or even transcend color altogether.

With a total of 117 multicolored Planeswalker cards in existence, along with six colorless options, there are plenty of diverse strategies to explore. From Karn, an artifact-focused colorless Planeswalker, to Nicol Bolas, a menacing multicolored mastermind, each card brings its own strengths and abilities to the table.

Whether you’re looking for versatility or a specific combination of colors, these Planeswalkers can greatly enhance your gameplay experience and provide exciting new avenues for victory.

The Best And Worst Planeswalkers

In this section, we’ll take a look at the top-performing Planeswalkers in competitive play and those with underwhelming abilities.

Top-performing Planeswalkers In Competitive Play

In the world of competitive Magic: The Gathering, certain Planeswalkers have proven to be real game-changers. Jace, the Living Guildpact, for example, is a force to be reckoned with thanks to his ability to manipulate cards in your library and hand.

Chandra Nalaar brings the heat with her fiery spells that deal damage directly to your opponent’s life total. And then there’s Nahiri, Storm of Stone, who can turn any creature into a potent threat by granting them powerful abilities.

These are just a few examples of the top-performing Planeswalkers that seasoned players rely on when they step onto the battlefield. So if you’re looking to up your game and dominate your opponents, adding these powerhouse Planeswalkers to your deck could be just what you need!

Planeswalkers With Underwhelming Abilities

While there are many powerful planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering, not all of them have abilities that live up to the hype. Some planeswalker cards just don’t deliver the impact you might expect on the battlefield.

Take Jace, the Living Guildpact for example. His ability to Scry 1 and draw a card is underwhelming compared to other planeswalkers who can directly alter the game state. Chandra Nalaar’s ability to deal damage is often overshadowed by other more versatile options available.

And Nahiri, Storm of Stone may struggle to find relevance in certain decks due to her limited range of abilities. It’s important to carefully consider a planeswalker’s abilities before adding them to your deck, as some may fall short in terms of power and versatility when compared to their counterparts.

Incorporating Planeswalker Decks Into Your Gameplay

Planeswalker decks are a great way to introduce new players to Magic: The Gathering and can also be a fun addition for more experienced players. These pre-constructed decks feature a planeswalker as the centerpiece, providing an easy starting point for building your deck around their abilities.

Whether you’re looking for a specific playstyle or just want to try something new, incorporating planeswalker decks into your gameplay is a fantastic way to shake up your strategy and explore the diverse world of Magic: The Gathering.

Power Level Debate And Balancing The Game

The power level debate surrounding the incorporation of Planeswalker Decks into gameplay has been a hot topic among Magic: The Gathering players. Many are questioning the impact these decks have on game balance, especially in competitive play.

There are discussions regarding whether Planeswalkers should be allowed in certain formats due to their potential for creating an uneven playing field. Additionally, Magic: The Gathering is making efforts to scale back the power and prominence of planeswalkers, including “demoting” some planeswalkers to creatures.

These conversations highlight the intricacies involved in designing a game that maintains both fairness and excitement for all players.

How To Acquire Planeswalkers On MTG Arena

To acquire Planeswalkers on MTG Arena, players have a few options. One way is to open booster packs and hope to find them randomly inside. Another option is to participate in limited-time events or special promotions where specific Planeswalkers are available as rewards.

Additionally, players can also craft Planeswalker cards using Wildcards, which are obtained by opening booster packs or as rewards for completing daily quests. So whether you’re looking to add powerful new Planeswalkers to your deck or complete your collection, there are various avenues for acquiring these coveted cards on MTG Arena.

The Role Of Planeswalkers In Magic: The Gathering Storytelling

Planeswalkers play a crucial role in the storytelling of Magic: The Gathering, being powerful mages who can traverse different planes and shape the game’s expansive lore.

The History And Evolution Of Planeswalkers In The Game’s Lore

Planeswalkers have left an indelible mark on the history and lore of Magic: The Gathering. Introduced over a decade ago, these powerful beings added a whole new layer to the game’s narrative.

Before planeswalkers, players saw them as godlike entities with immortality and unimaginable abilities. However, the concept of planeswalkers and the multiverse was developed by Richard Garfield, the creator of Magic: The Gathering.

This opened up endless possibilities for storytelling within the game, allowing players to explore different worlds and dimensions through these unique characters. Whether they’re battling alongside heroes or scheming against villains, planeswalkers have become integral to capturing the essence of what makes Magic: The Gathering such an immersive experience.

Famous Planeswalkers And Their Impact On The Storyline

Throughout the rich history of Magic: The Gathering, numerous famous Planeswalkers have emerged, leaving an indelible mark on the game’s captivating storyline. From iconic figures like Jace Beleren and Liliana Vess to powerful heroes like Chandra Nalaar and Ajani Goldmane, these Planeswalkers have played pivotal roles in shaping the multiverse.

Their unique abilities and personal journeys have created intense drama and intrigue within the game’s lore. In fact, recent events in “MTG Aftermath” reveal that planeswalkers are losing their sparks en masse, potentially leading to catastrophic consequences for the entire multiverse.

Dive into this fascinating aspect of Magic: The Gathering’s narrative as you uncover how these renowned Planeswalkers continue to shape the destiny of worlds.

Tips For Building A Deck Around Planeswalkers

When building a deck around planeswalkers, it’s important to choose cards that synergize well with their abilities and support your overall strategy.

Card Synergy And Support For Planeswalker Strategies

Building a deck around Planeswalkers requires careful consideration of card synergy and support. Choosing cards that work well with your Planeswalker strategies can greatly enhance your gameplay.

Look for cards that provide additional loyalty counters to your Planeswalkers, allowing them to stay on the battlefield longer and activate more abilities. Cards that protect your Planeswalkers from being targeted or damaged by opponents are also crucial in maintaining their longevity.

Additionally, consider cards that synergize with specific abilities of your chosen Planeswalkers, maximizing their potential impact on the game. By selecting the right combination of cards, you can create a powerful deck that revolves around the strengths of your Planeswalkers.

Choosing The Right Planeswalkers For Your Deck’s Theme

When building your deck, it’s crucial to choose the right Planeswalkers that align with your deck’s theme. Here are some tips to help you make the best selection:

  1. Consider the colors: Planeswalkers come in various colors, each representing different playstyles and strengths. For example, if you have a white-themed deck focused on defense and armies, a white Planeswalker could synergize well with your strategy.
  2. Evaluate their abilities: Each Planeswalker has unique stats and abilities that can significantly impact your gameplay. Take the time to read and understand their abilities and how they complement your deck’s theme. Whether it’s dealing damage, buffing creatures, or controlling the board, choose a Planeswalker whose abilities bolster your overall strategy.
  3. Look for synergy: Consider how the Planeswalker interacts with other cards in your deck. Are there any synergies or combos that can be activated by their abilities? Finding ways to maximize the value of your Planeswalker through card interactions can greatly enhance your deck’s effectiveness.
  4. Assess the mana cost: Take into account the mana cost of the Planeswalker when choosing for your deck. Ensure that its cost fits within your overall mana curve and doesn’t disrupt the flow of your gameplay.
  5. Plan for protection: Keep in mind that Planeswalkers can become targets for opponents seeking to disrupt your strategy. Consider including cards in your deck that provide protection or ways to defend against threats directed at your Planeswalkers.

What is a planeswalker card in MTG?

A planeswalker is a powerful card type that represents a character who can be called upon to aid you in a game of Magic: The Gathering.

How do I use a planeswalker?

You can use a planeswalker by casting it, just like any other spell. Once it enters the battlefield, it becomes a permanent and you can activate its abilities by adding loyalty counters to it.

What are loyalty counters and how do they work?

Loyalty counters are counters that are added to a planeswalker each time one of its abilities is activated. The number of loyalty counters on a planeswalker determines how many abilities it can activate, and also affects its toughness.

How do I add loyalty counters to my planeswalker?

You can add loyalty counters to your planeswalker by activating its abilities. Each ability will indicate how many loyalty counters you need to add to the planeswalker in order to activate it.

What are planeswalker abilities?

Planeswalker abilities are special abilities that are unique to planeswalker cards. They can be activated by adding loyalty counters to the planeswalker and can range from simply gaining life to dealing damage to your opponent.

What are static abilities for planeswalkers?

Static abilities are abilities that are always active for a planeswalker as long as it is on the battlefield. They can include things like increasing the loyalty counters of other permanents on the battlefield.

How do planeswalkers work with other permanents on the battlefield?

Planeswalkers can be targeted by other spells and abilities just like any other permanent on the battlefield. However, they also have the ability to use their own abilities to affect other permanents on the battlefield.

Can planeswalkers be targeted by spells and abilities that target other permanents?

Yes, planeswalkers can be targeted by spells and abilities that target other permanents. However, any damage that would be dealt to a player can be redirected to one of their planeswalkers instead.

What happens if a player tries to deal damage to my planeswalker?

Any damage that would be dealt to a player can be redirected to one of their planeswalkers instead. If a planeswalker is dealt damage equal to or greater than its loyalty, it is put into its owner’s graveyard as a state-based action.

How do I know about a planeswalker’s loyalty on its card?

A planeswalker card will have a printed loyalty number on it, which represents its starting loyalty. However, there can be errata in the Oracle card text that may change this number.


In conclusion, mastering the art of using Planeswalkers in Magic: The Gathering can take your game to a whole new level. By understanding their unique mechanics and strategies, you can harness the power of these powerful mages to dominate the battlefield.

So grab your deck, choose your favorite planeswalker, and let the sparks fly! Game on!

Alex Caldwell
Alex Caldwell

Alex, a former professional card player, brings his extensive knowledge and passion for card games to Progamecards. He believes in the power of strategy and the thrill of competition, values that are deeply embedded in our company culture. Alex's vision is to make Progamecards a community where card game lovers can not only learn and improve but also share their love for the game.

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