With regards to gaming and general geekiness, if World of Warcraft is my true love, then it is accurate to say that Magic: the Gathering was my first love. One can say that this fantasy trading cardgame was (and still is) the WoW of TCG’s. It’s practically the earliest of its kind to break out into the mainstream gaming community, it has a rich history of lore that spreads accross multiple universes, and perhaps most remarkably of all, the mana system, classified and broken down into different colours of mana, is ingenious, and has develloped into a philosophy of its own.
So I ask the question to those who RP and have played the game; which colour are you?
After the break: red, blue, green, all the colours of the magic rainbow.
A Flash of Colours
Mark Rosewater, creator of M:tG, in his years of working on the game not only has fleshed out his brainchild with large amounts of flavour, but has evoked a philosophy of his own. Each colour in the magic pentagram represents specific ideals and beliefs that are unique from each other. To take that concept even further, each colour’s placement in the pentagram also reflects their relationship with each other based on how their ideas coincide with each other.
White, the Colour of Absolutes
From the lush plains, white believes in morality and law. To white, there exists only good and bad. They believe in the betterment of the group, instilling laws that protect society as a whole, and limiting the rights of the individual as a result. White wants order and civility, and is willing to take arms against those threaten its ideals. White specializes in healing, protection spells, and defense. White agrees with green’s sense of community and blue’s critical thinking and logistics. White disagrees with black’s selfishness and red’s chaotic nature.
In WoW, holy/discipline priests, paladins, and protection warriors generally fall into White.
Black, the Colour of the Self
From the withery swamps, black believes in the amorality of the world. People are injust and unfair by nature, and it is up to the individual to survive by any means necessary, in order to not get hurt. Black strives for absolute power, and is willing to kill usurp others for it. Black specializes in raising the dead, corrupting minds, and blackmail. Black agrees with blue’s planning and plotting, with red’s hedonistic instincts. Black disagrees with white’s morality and green’s zest for life.
In WoW, warlocks, death knights, and shadow priests generally fall into Black.
Green, the Colour of Growth
From the lush forests, Green believes in the natural order of the world. The power of nature is a strong, beautiful, peaceful one. It merely wants nature to take its course and let all of its organisms take place in its perfectly balanced system. Green strives for continued growth, evolution, and spirituality (not the religious kind). Green speciailzes in spells that summon many creatures, makes creatures stronger, and creating/exploring new lands. Green agrees with white’s need for order, and red’s primal instincts. Green disagree’s with Black’s penchant for death, and blue’s obsession with technology and artifice.
In WoW, druids, shamans, and hunters generally fall into Green.
Blue, the Colour of Knowledge
From the tranquil islands, blue sees the world as a buffet of information. It believes that each individual starts off as a blank slate, and has the potential to become as perfect as their wills take them. Using intellect as its most deadly weapon, blue studies every tiny nuance of its own spells, and wins its battles by outthinking the opponent. It values technology as a means of accelerating the research and development process, in hopes of obtaining the biggest advances. Blue specializes in spells that disable or manipulate other spells, and spells that gains them tactical information. Blue agrees with white’s planning and strategy, and black’s emphasis on the self. Blue disagrees with green’s disrespect for innovation, and red’s random nature.
In WoW, mages generally fall into Blue.
Red, the Colour of Passion
From the majestic mountains, red believes in living life to its fullest. Wearing its heart on its sleeve, red’s passion drives it to lead a hedonistic lifestyle. Where black is selfish in trying to achieve absolute power, red merely wants to trot through life just doing what it wants, not caring much about what others do. Red is unpredictable, and will go through great lengths to get what it wants. Red spells deal with destruction of things and doing lots of damage. Red agrees with green’s love for life, and with black’s selfishness. Red disagrees with white’s need for rules, and with blue’s overthinking.
In WoW, rogues and warriors generally fall into Red.
There are Obvious Exceptions
The great thing about Magic: the Gathering is that it creates its own set of rules just so that they can be broken. While each colour has its own distinct philosophy, they don’t live in a vacuum. The interaction between spells and colours result in an opportunity of sorts for devellopers to create cards based on different colour combinations, and design their worlds based on the unique spells they create, resulting in a fascinating marriage of mechanics and flavour.
My characters, as I’ve discovered while thinking about this very concept, tend to fall directly in line with the colour pie philosophies. Bashertin is an expert mage, constantly evolving his reportoire by furthering his understanding with the arcane. Bash is blue beyond belief. Leyola is a classic green druid, seeking out the world, and trying to restore it to its natural state. Wimzig is your archetypal black death knight, jaded by having been tricked by those with greater power than he, and seeks revenge by obtaining power of his own.
What I certainly love about the storyline that I created between Leyola and Wimzig is that they are of two opposing colours, and while they certainly have their own beliefs, their friendship has an effect on each other such that they are not extremes of the colour that they represent. Leyola accepts Wimzig’s need to harness the dead because that’s how he was made. Wimzig is thankful for Leyola’s acceptance, and is lucky to have a strong druid by his side to nurse his injuries.
While I believe WoW is a similar success story of mechanics and flavour, Roleplaying your class and/or race is not restricted to such general guidelines either. So I ask those who roleplay to really think what colours their characters fall under. Do they follow the colours of their class? Do they drift between colours? How do they interact with characters of other colours? Speak out! Represent your colour!