Last updated on April 26, 2023

Boggart Arsonists - Illustration by Jesper Ejsing

Boggart Arsonists | Illustration by Jesper Ejsing

Commonly confused with the newer permanent type, a creature with Plainswalk isn’t the same as a planeswalker! It’s not used much these days (in fact it’s not been used very much at all), but it’s part of Magic’s history, so I thought we should take a look.

Ready to walk into a beautiful field of wheat? Let’s dive right in!

What Is Plainswalk in MTG?

Righteous Avengers - Illustration by Heather Hudson

Righteous Avengers | Illustration by Heather Hudson

Plainswalk, like the other landwalk mechanics (Islandwalk, Mountainwalk, etc.), allows a creature to attack an opponent unblocked if said opponent controls a Plains. It could be a basic Plains or just any land with the Plains subtype, like Sacred Foundry.

Out of all of the landwalk cards, Plainswalk has been used the least. It only appears on four creatures, with nearly the same number preventing it from doing anything. This makes it one of the most underused mechanics in existence.

Honorable Mention: Old Fogey

Old Fogey

As often happens with the honorable mentions, we have an Un-card to talk about. Old Fogey is a fantastic card, particularly for some of the more… experienced players out there.

It has a mish mash of keywords that are rarely used anymore, including Plainswalk. It also makes a great trip down memory lane, even if it might make your back sore from the nostalgia.

#5. Aysen Highway

Aysen Highway

Starting off isn’t a creature, but it is a way to give your creatures Plainswalk. The problem with Aysen Highway, outside of its steep mana cost, is that it also affects your opponents’ creatures. You’re likely to be playing Plains yourself if you’re playing it, making your opponents’ white creatures able to attack you too!

But what if your opponent doesn’t have any white creatures? Well, they likely aren’t going to have Plains either, are they?

#4. Righteous Avengers

Righteous Avengers

Four mana for a 3/1 must mean there’s some fantastic ability attached to this, right? Well, if Plainswalk is your favorite ability (and, let’s be honest, why wouldn’t it be at this point?) then Righteous Avengers is the 3/1 for you!

Unfortunately, there are a lot of players out there who don’t see the merits of a 3/1 for five with situational evasion. More fool them.

#3. Zodiac Rooster

Zodiac Rooster

Zodiac Rooster is my go-to card when someone online asks about the most powerful Plainswalkers. I’m pretty sure they mean planeswalkers, but what are Magic players if not pedantic?

At least the cost for Zodiac Rooster isn’t embarrassing. It would at least see some play in a Limited format, I guess?

#2. Boggart Arsonists

Boggart Arsonists

If you thought a card that specifically hates a certain type of basic land was great, then you’re going to love Boggart Arsonists. Not only does it hate on Plains, it also hates on that most meta of tribes: scarecrows.

In fairness there are a lot more scarecrows than there are Plainswalkers, so maybe this will be useful once in… a hundred games?

#1. Graceful Antelope

Graceful Antelope

So what comes out on top in this powerhouse of a list? Well, it’s none other than Graceful Antelope!

This is actually a pretty interesting card. It turns a land into a Plains when it hits, and the effect sticks until it leaves play. This is useful for a few reasons.

In a multiplayer game you can make a player not running white have a Plains, so you can get in with your other Plainswalkers. It also doesn’t say it becomes a Plains in addition to other types, so it works a bit like Blood Moon and can stop lands from doing what they should do. This could be used to starve your opponent off a color, fix your own mana in a pinch, or even turn off a powerful ability on something like a Gaea's Cradle.

While not the most powerful card ever printed, Graceful Antelope is a pretty unique effect that can do work on occasion.

Best Plainswalk Payoffs

What good is having a Plainswalking creature if your opponents don’t control any Plains? Luckily, there are a few cards that can help you out with that.

On top of Graceful Antelope, which is mentioned above, you have other options in cards like Tundra Kavu and Lush Growth. Granted, these aren’t the best cards ever, but they can be useful if you need to get that damage through.

Unfortunately, there’s no Blood Moon effect for Plains, but we can live in hope (or fear…)

Wrap Up

Lush Growth - Illustration by Jesper Ejsing

Lush Growth | Illustration by Jesper Ejsing

I hope you’ve enjoyed this trip down memory lane looking at some of the more niche designs in Magic’s history. The reason we don’t see more cards like this is that Wizards don’t like mechanics that hate on a particular color very much, so we’re unlikely to see many more landwalk creatures because it’s difficult to flavorfully depict a creature that can walk across Plains particularly well.

All that said I’m always interested in seeing some homebrew designs, so let me know what a good Plainswalker could look like on a modern card in the comments below, or join the discussion over in the Draftsim Discord.

Thanks again for reading, and I’ll catch you in the next one!

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