We're excited to continue Coast to Coast Casual (CCC), a blog series written by East2West, published on MTG Cardsmith.
When you sit down to play Magic you become an all powerful ultra being whose powers surpass that of the gods! If you wielded the powers a deck of Magic cards give you, I'd be surprised if there was a problem or monster you couldn't beat. That's the thing though, you don't have those powers (or at least you do but hey, what do I know). So let's say for a minute that you weren't born here on Earth, but instead somewhere out there in the multiverse. You're not a planeswalker, you're not a great legendary hero. As far as anyone's concerned you're barely a Citizen token. What plane would be best to live on for your average magical Joe? That's what I aim to answer today.
Real quick before we start, the planes we'll look at today will only be the ones visited explicitly in sets, sorry Kaldheim. I'll also be dividing single planes into separate entities based on any transformations the may have undergone, so Mirrodin and New Phyrexia will be ranked as seperate places. Planes will be ranked on a scale of 1 to 5 with those rankings meaning the following.
- NO! DO NOT LIVE HERE!
- Mmmmmmaybe keep looking
- Hey this place ain't half bad!
- Now we're getting somewhere.
- Prime real estate baby!
With that out of the way, let's get down to business!
Dominaria - 3
Oh Dominaria, so close yet so far. For all intensive purposes Dominaria actually seems like a nice place to live. There are enough cities and heroes to keep an average person safe from the planes natural dangers, it's natural resources are plentiful, and the whole plane is currently experiencing a great period of relative peace and growth. Here's the thing though, Dominaria never really stays simple here. Every couple years there's another disaster that threatens all life. Whether it's the Phyrexians, another Ice Age, or even time rifts there's always something just waiting around the corner to ruin your otherwise perfect life. Overall not the worst option but only a place you should consider if you're prepared to face the consequences.
Rabiah - 2
Technically Rabiah was visited so, by my own rules, I do have to go over it. Rabiah is one of those planes where even though it's been explored in a set, there's not really much to go on. The bad news is that what little there is points to it sucking as a potential home. Most of the plane is a vast and deadly desert that features randomly appearing rifts to other worlds. There's also a plane directly connected to Rabia known as Dark Rabiah that is referred to as, and I quote, "As evil a place as even Phyrexia." THAT IS A MASSIVE RED FLAG!!!! It's not all bad, but trust me, there's much better out there.
Ulgrotha - 2
Another of the planes that was technically visited, Ulgrotha has almost the opposite problem that Rabiah does. Where for Rabia we had very little lore, Ulgrotha actually has a large amount of it, only problem being that most of it points to the whole place kinda sucking. As of the last time we saw Ulgrotha it was controlled by Baron Sengir and his legions of vampire soldiers. As a human with tasty blood this should be a massive deterrent to moving there. If becoming nothing more than a glorified gusher wasn't bad enough, the plane has only had two planar visitors in recent history (I use the world recent lightly here) and those visitors happened to be Leshrac and Nicol Bolas, y'know, only two of the most evil beings to ever exist.
Phyrexia and New Phyrexia - 1
Are you stupid? Don't go here.
Shandalar - 2
When I first started looking at the lore of Shandalar I was all for this place to be at least a 4, I thought most of the bad stuff was in the past. Plus the abundance of mana here means even a citizen like you and I could learn to use magic easily. My hopes were high, that is, until I saw the word that changed everything. Slivers. There are Slivers on Shandalar, if you don't know what those are look them up. Those goddamn things will make your life miserable (and probably short). On top of the Slivers this plane is also the origin of the Chain Veil, so you bet there are more cursed as hell things just laying around for an unsuspecting townsfolk (you) to pick up. Oh, and the real deal breaker is that there's an extremely prevalent demon cult that is big on human sacrifice.
Mercadia - 4
Unless a lot has changed since we last saw Mercadia, it just might be the best place for your average person to settle down.The whole plane used to be rife with war, assassins, and interplanar tomfoolery. Good news is, when last we saw it, the corrupt government was overthrown and all was looking up! Mercadia is home to a truly fabulous array of places to live from the city life of Mercadia City to the rustic port of Rishada, there's a little something for everyone. Also it's got one of the coolest creation myths ever, it's a whole thing about this awesome magic robot dragon, look it up sometime.
Mirrodin - 2
Mirrodin isn't a bad place per say but I've had the same question ever since I saw the place, what the hell do they eat? Seriously, all the animals and plants are metal to some extent so what are the humans even able to eat? All I'm aware of is something called Gelfruit and let's face it, that's not the most appetizing name. Other than that, the main problem I see with Mirrodin is that there's not really a safe human civilization anywhere on the plane. The Vulshok have those metal bits shooting out, unless you have those too I'm like 80% sure they'll attack you on sight. The Sylvok seem alright but you're pretty much forced into their druidic religion. The Moriok will probably eat you, and if they don't the gas that surrounds where they live will literally rot your brain. The Neurok are slaves but also way smarter than you so unless you want to get strung out on Blinkmoth Serum they're out. And finally the Auriok, these guys are actually your best bet, they're more willing to accept outsiders and make peace with them, the only issue is that they're nomadic as hell. If you're not willing to pack light and move constantly, this is not the place for you.
Kamigawa - 4
Now we're getting somewhere! When we last saw Kamigawa it's main threats, the violent spirits, were quelled and the war that ravaged the plane had ended! That means the only thing you'd ever have to worry about are the occasional ogre, demon, or spiteful spirit! To be fair, we haven't seem Kamigawa in such a long time that I'm genuinely unsure if it remains as safe a place as I think it is. If things are back to being similar to pre war Kamigawa, this place rules! Everything has some sort of spirit that, with some convincing or offerings, will totally help you out! There's a great education system to enter (The Minamo School) where even an average person can learn to be a great caster. Kamigawa seems pretty sweet if I do say so myself.
Ravnica - 3
I feel like this might be the most controversial ranking but bear with me here. On Ravnica odds are you wouldn't be in a guild or, if you were, you wouldn't be a high ranking member. No matter what guild it is the lower ranking people kinda get shafted. In the Izzet they get blown up, in the Orzhov they're slaves, in the Boros they're basically squires, etc. The other option though, being guildless, also sucks. We've seen from the cards that reference guildless people that they're lives are constant fear of getting sucked into guild conflicts, whether they like it or not. Comparatively it's fine, definitely not the worst world, but I would keep looking.
Lorwyn - 1
You're a human, most races on this plane are pretty xenophobic so good luck not getting killed or enslaved.
Shadowmoor - 1
Same as Lorwyn but with the added worry of being not just killed or enslaved, but likely eaten.
Alara - 2
Back when the shards were separated, this would've been an easy 4, just stick to Bant and you'd be fine, but now since they've been brought back together it's down to a 2. The general citizenry of every other shard except Bant has a horrible life and now there's a war going on so you can bet you'd be drafted into it since Bant society sees warfare as an honorable act. If you were on Grixis you'd be killed then frankensteined, on Jund you'd be eaten, on Naya you'd be sacrificed or eaten, and on Esper you'd get straight up roboticized. There goes the neighborhood.
Zendikar - 3
I want to rank Zendikar higher actually since it seems pretty nice now, we'll have to wait for Zendikar Rising to get a more accurate number here. As of now however Zendikar seems totally liveable. The main threat, the Eldrazi, have been more or less taken care of, the whole plane seems to have come to a sort of peace since they were all equally devastated by the war and are all helping each other rebuild. Normally this would be a straight up 4 if not for the honestly staggering likelihood that the Eldrazi will come back again. I mean I don't want them too, and I'm sure it won't be on the same scale, but they will probably be back soon enough.
Innistrad - 1
Remember, you come to this plane as you are now, that means you're a tasty snack to 90% of this world's population. Sure, Emrakul's gone and so are most of the demons, but you still have to worry about zombies, cannibals, werewolves, vampires, or one of the hundreds of other monsters looking to take a bite out of you. Don't move to Innistrad unless you've got a deathwish.
Fiora - 5
Okay so we actually don't know too much about Fiora but from what we do know, it seems pretty sweet for your average commoner. All the fights are kept to the upper class and political spectrum. As long as you don't run afoul of the wrong politician you'll be fine. In fact, more than fine. The laws are magically binding meaning it's harder to break them, if you don't want to live in the city there are plenty of smaller (safer) towns, and the wilderness is almost completely unexplored so there's a way to fame and fortune ready for you if you're bold enough. Fiora has my vote.
Theros - 5
We are just pumping out the fives! Theros has some of, if not the, safest settlements for you to live in. Both Setessa and Meletis are both shown to have thriving academic culture and a military that doesn't use a draft system. You could so easily fly under the radar of the gods and monsters and just become a philosopher or teacher. Given there's the constant threat of someone doing something to piss off someone and then you're whole city's just gone, but hey that's not so bad considering some of the other choices! I believe that you could not only survive on Theros, but thrive. Just stay out of the spotlight though.
Tarkir (Khans Era) - 4
Tarkir during the reign of the khans wasn't too bad. If you were in any clan except the Mardu or the Sultai your life was pretty sweet. The Temur just chilled in the mountains unless they needed to come down, the Jeskai also chilled in their monasteries, and the Abzan had sweet strongholds where the civilian populace could live out their peaceful lives. The main problem here is that no matter what clan you were in, there was a constant threat of all out war with the others, that's pretty bad if you're just trying to get by in life.
Tarkir (Dragons Era) - 1
Hey kids, can you spell SACRIFICED TO A DRAGON???? All of the dragonlords are kinda dinguses. Silumgar sees humans as pathetic little slaves, Atarka and Kologhan see us as yum yum tasty snacks. Sure Ojutai is sorta down with them, but he's a historical revisionist in the worst way (also he killed like, a lot of people). Dromoka also took a thriving culture that respected their ancestors and said "Nah" torchin their sacred place and killing off all it's practitioners. These are tyrants my dude, baaad place to live.
Kaladesh - 5
DING DING DING, bigggg winner over her folks. Kaladesh was a sick place to live for the average joe before the rebellion and it just got better. Sure the consulate sucked before the rebellion but they pretty much just restricted inventors. If you were just like, an accountant, or something you'd be totally fine. And now, after the Consulate got thwacked, life's even better since all this sweet new tech will definitely be making life way easier and way cooler. Two thumbs up for Kaladesh baby!
Amonkhet - 1
This plane empty, YEET!
Ixalan - 3
Ixalan has potential, I'm not sure how things are outside of the factions we've seen but I'm sure there's a place for you. Only problem though is that the factions we know of kinda suck for the normal citizen. Sure the Merfolk and Sun Empire won't really impact your day to day, but the pirates and vampires might. Pirates suck if you're just trying to make your living trading or sailing and the Dusk Legion, for all that they try, still drink the occasional citizen. It's just an okay place to settle down, certainly not somewhere I'd try.
Kylem - 5
We don't know much about the general day to day for a citizen of Kylem (the setting of Battlebond) but we do know that the tournament is specifically nonlethal meaning I doubt the culture is very violent. From what we see it's a fun place to live with constant entertainment and people streaming in from all planes! You'd get to meet people from every other place in the Multiverse, all from the comfort of the stands as you watch a grand sporting event. That sounds pretty sweet to me. Kylem is definitely a plane I wouldn't mind making my home.
Eldraine - 4
Our most recent addition comes in swinging to our list, beating out some classic planes. On Eldraine the five courts have a general peace and the danger is mostly found in the wilds. There are plenty of small towns to settle down in and just spend your days, no adventure and no death. There are two reasons Eldraine isn't a 5 though, the main one being the ever present fear of being unknowingly sucked into a fairy tale. Witches and Warlocks would be totally happy to torment a small time yokel like you. The other, less present, reason is disease. I know it's a world of magic and all but it's still the middle ages, I highly doubt the doctors are that good.
There you have it folks. The East to West travel agency certified rankings for every visited plane. If you think I missed one or want to tell me where you'd like to live, leave a comment. I can also be reached on twitter @East2Westmtg. As always this has been East2west with CCC, I'll see you guys on the battlefield.
East2West is an aspiring writer from NJ currently seeking fame and fortune on the internet. She's been playing Magic since Zendikar block (the original one) and is a commander player with one deck for each two color pair and one for each single color. The only non EDH deck she plays is her own personal Pauper brew, Pauper Eggs. Follow her on her newly created and probably soon to be underused twitter @East2WestMTG.