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By: Kumagoro42, Gianluca Aicardi
Aug 01 2023 9:05am
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 The setting of Magic: The Gathering has been, since the beginning, a Multiverse of different planes – once collectively referred to as "Dominia" (a name that was later abandoned to avoid confusion with the plane of Dominaria) – separated by a void called the Blind Eternities. The number of planes in the Multiverse is virtually infinite, although Urza believed it was actually a finite number, except so large it would take more than the cumulative lifetime of each living being in the Multiverse to count them all. The battle cards from March of the Machine, describing the most recent Phyrexian Invasion of the Multiverse, namecheck 36 different planes – and that's actually more than we physically visited in 30 years of Magic's expansions.

 Each of those 36 planes is reviewed below, from most visited to less visited (with older visits first, in case of a tie), with an alphabetical summary at the end. The statistic is based on the 95 premier sets released before March of the Machine plus a select number of core sets and supplemental sets that focus on single-plane settings, like Magic 2010Conspiracy, and Battlebond. Notably, Legends is, to date, the only premier set that took the opposite approach of depicting an assortment of different planes (the World enchantments introduced there were essentially a progenitor to plane and phenomenon cards). Planes that were never the focus of a set, and we only previously knew only from a few single cards, are listed at the bottom.

 A final appendix gives honorable mentions to a handful of famous planes that weren't featured on March of the Machine's battles. For a number of other planes, some of which we can spot in the "Planar Index" illustration above, we only know their names because they appeared in Planechase plane cards or were mentioned in novels and comics, albeit they might be expanded upon in future products.


 1. Dominaria

 

 Number of previous visits: 28 – Antiquities, The Dark, Fallen Empires, Ice Age, Alliances, Mirage, Visions, Weatherlight, Urza's Saga, Urza's Legacy, Urza's Destiny, Prophecy, Invasion, Planeshift, Apocalypse, Odyssey, Torment, Judgment, Onslaught, Legions, Scourge, Coldsnap, Time Spiral, Planar Chaos, Future Sight, Dominaria, Dominaria United, The Brothers' War

 Year of introduction: 1994

 Thematic identity: It's the setting of almost all the early Magic sets, and still one third of all the released premier sets. It was once the Nexus of the Multiverse (it ceased to be during the Great Mending), and originally had a generic fantasy flavor, but over time its identity came to be linked to the number of catastrophic near-extinction events that Dominaria endured in the past – from the the Brothers' War to the Ice Age that it engendered, as well as the first Phyrexian Invasion – so it's now declined as a post-apocalyptic setting. It's been depicted so many times that we have developed a deep knowledge of its geographical areas and continents, which were the specific focus of some of those visits, like Terisiare (5 visits), Jamuraa (3 visits), Otaria (3 visits), and Sarpadia (1 visit). Zhalfir, which was part of Jamuraa, has now become a separate plane.

 How the Invasion ended: Emerged as the reigning Phyrexian tyrant, Elesh Norn sent her trusty lieutenant Rona to supervise the operations on Dominaria, but the population of the plane was alerted by Teferi, and already knew the threats from having been the target of the previous Phyrexian assault. The immortal archmage Jodah led the resistance, the knights of New Benalia stroke hard on the front lines, and the desecration of Serra's temples triggered the return en masse of the Serra Angels to the Multiverse. The Phyrexians didn't expect that.

 Famous defenders: Shalai, the Angel protector of Llanowar, fought alongside the Elf Archer Hallar. The crew of the skyship Weatherlight took part in the war efforts, including the Thallid Slimefoot and the Goblin cabin boy Squee. The ineffable Frog Spirit Yargle was accepted as unlikely partner by the noble Maro-Sorcerer Multani. Unfortunately, some Dominarian legends succumbed to the Phyrexian influence as well; among those, the fall of the ghostly necromancer Moira wasn't unexpected, but the aven Cleric Teshar is a sadder story.

   


 2. Ravnica

 

 Number of previous visits: 9 – Ravnica: City of Guilds, Guildpact, Dissension, Return to Ravnica, Gatecrash, Dragon's Maze, Guilds of Ravnica, Ravnica Allegiance, War of the Spark

 Year of introduction: 2005

 Thematic identity: A city-plane with inspiration from ancient European cities, particularly Prague. The entirety of Ravnica is covered in a single urban landscape, divised among ten guilds, each representing a different combination of two colors of mana. The names of the guilds have become synonymous with the ten possible color pairs.

 How the Invasion ended: A Phyrexianized Vraska struck violently against the plane's defense, converting most of the Golgari. Various members of the Simic and Izzet guilds joined the invaders out of scientific curiosity. Ultimately the Izzet guildmaster Ral Zarek was able to defeat Vraska (although her body wasn't found), and Niv-Mizzet reaffirmed his role as the Living Guildpact. The Phyrexians weren't prepared for that.

 Famous defenders: In the chaos of the battle raging through the city streets, the mighty Cyclops Borborygmos used the frightened squeals of fellow monocle Fblthp as a targeting system to zero in on the enemy's position – and then smash them to smithereens.


 3. New Phyrexia (formerly Argentum and Mirrodin)

 

 Number of previous visits: 8 – Scourge, Mirrodin, Darksteel, Fifth Dawn, Scars of Mirrodin, Mirrodin Besieged, New Phyrexia, Phyrexia: All Will Be One

 Year of introduction: 2003

 Thematic identity: An artificial sphere made of metal and orbited by five satellites, alternatively referred to as suns or moons. It was originally created by the Golem planeswalker Karn (before the Mending, when planeswalkers had godlike powers), who named it Argentum and left. Its rebellious warden Memnarch renamed it Mirrodin and populated it by abducting living beings from other planes. Because of Mirrodin's nature, over generations its inhabitants' flesh turned into organic metal. After Memnarch's defeat, a new breed of Phyrexians emerged on the plane, and eventually took it over.

 How the Invasion ended: This was a reverse invasion, since New Phyrexia is the seat of power of Elesh Norn and the other Praetors, from which the assault originated. The counterattack was led by Teferi and the Zhalfirin Knights. In the end, only only one Praetor survived (the red-aligned Urabrask, who had switched sides against the Phyrexians), and New Phyrexia was sent to the Blind Eternities, its place taken by the previously displaced Zhalfir. The Phyrexians didn't plan for that.


 4. Innistrad

 

 Number of previous visits: 7 – Innistrad, Dark Ascension, Avacyn Restored, Shadows over Innistrad, Eldritch Moon, Innistrad: Midnight Hunt, Innistrad: Crimson Vow

 Year of introduction: 2011

 Thematic identity: Innistrad is the top-down Gothic horror plane. In a setting reminiscent of 18th-century to 19th-century Germany and Eastern Europe, Humans have to survive the nightly threats of classic monsters like Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies and ghosts. The plane's moon is a vital factor in its balance, and currently contains the trapped Eldrazi titan Emrakul.

 How the Invasion ended: Werewolf packleader Arlinn Kord and Vampire lord Sorin Markov became reluctant allies after being warned by Teferi of the impeding invasion. The various monster factions and the Humans didn't join forces, but were very effective just the same in repelling the invaders. The Zombie hordes created by necromancing siblings Gisa and Geralf Cecani proved especially crucial, since the reanimated corpses are immune to phyresis. The Phyrexians hadn't anticipated that.

 Famous defenders: A few wartime bedfellows, some stranger than others: the good witch Katilda and the sinister cultist Lier; the ghost of Saint Traft and the ruthless inquisitor Rem Karolus; the immaculate heroine Thalia and the mindless Gitrog Monster. A veritable mix of holy and unholy, united against the common enemy.

  


 5. Shandalar

 

 Number of previous visits: 6 – Magic 2010, Magic 2011, Magic 2012, Magic 2013, Magic 2014, Magic 2015

 Year of introduction: 1997

 Thematic identity: Shandalar was the setting of the Magic: The Gathering video game released by MicroProse in 1997. It's a fairly generic fantasy setting, but was given the peculiarity of being a "rogue plane" that drifts through the Multiverse. It's very rich in mana so basically everything and everyone on the plane is infused with magic. When the core sets started printing new cards, Shandalar was chosen as their designated setting. Among other things, it was established that the Onakke Ogres are from Shandalar, and so is their most feared creation, the powerful Chain Veil.

 How the Invasion ended: It was an environmental defeat. Shandalar's massively wild mana stripped the artificial components off of the Phyrexians' bodies, and the Chain Veil's native power was channeled back through the planar portal from its current location in Ravnica. The Phyrexians weren't ready for that.


 6. Zendikar

 

 Number of previous visits: 6 – Zendikar, Worldwake, Rise of the Eldrazi, Battle for Zendikar, Oath of the Gatewatch, Zendikar Rising

 Year of introduction: 2009

 Thematic identity: Zendikar is a plane where the mana is so strong the land itself comes alive, constantly shifting and changing, and islands of rock called Skyclaves float over the landscape. It's a savage yet magnificent place that invites adventure and exploration. It's also the plane where the cosmic entities called Eldrazi were sealed aeons ago; their awakening caused a cataclysm that was thwarted at a heavy cost. Zendikar is the native plane of the Elf animist Nissa, the cocky Merfolk Kiora, and the ancient lithomancer Nahiri.

 How the Invasion ended: Zendikar's worldsoul reacted to the arrivals of the invaders. It wasn't pleased. But also the Zendikari had lived through the Eldrazi apocalypse, and routinely have to contend with the Roil; for them, being raided by extraplanar biomechanical monstrosities is just another Tuesday. The Phyrexians didn't predict that.

 Famous defenders: Vampire bloodchief Drana, a veteran of the Eldrazi wars, found common ground with the Angel Linvala. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship based on tearing apart Phyrexian limbs.


 7. Kamigawa

 

 Number of previous visits: 4 – Champions of Kamigawa, Betrayers of Kamigawa, Saviors of Kamigawa, Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty

 Year of introduction: 2004

 Thematic identity: It's the plane inspired by Japanese culture, myths and folklore. The initial visit depicted in the original Kamigawa block explored the ancient history of the plane, during the Kami War. The return in Neon Dynasty was set 1,200 year later, in a plane now characterized by the highest technological level of any other known places in the Multiverse, where electrical and digital devices have become commonplace. In this novel cyberpunk setting, the Spirit Realm still exists but it has to cohabit with the trappings of modernity. The planeswalker only known as the Wanderer was revealed as the Emperor of Kamigawa.

 How the Invasion ended: Beloved Moonfolk planeswalker Tamiyo was compleated in the early stages of the invasion, and eventually sent to wreak havoc on her native plane. The duty-bound Samurai constituted the first line of defense, but tragically fell, and were turned into Phyrexians. The cybernetic Ninjas had to face them, ultimately managing to come out on top thanks to their tricks and gadgets. The Phyrexians hadn't foreseen that.

 Famous defenders: Fanatical Akki Samurai Goro-Goro put aside for a moment his passion for the Spirit Dragon Atsushi and teamed up with yakuza-like Human Ninja Satoru Umezawa, a prominent descendant of the Dominaria-based Clan Umezawa. Elsewhere, the Spirit Dragon Kairi had the practical acumen to understand desperate times require desperate measures, so he freed the dastardly Ogre Demon Hidetsugu, murderer of Kairi's previous incarnation, from his prison in the Spirit Realm. The tenuos alliance between such powerful beings proved mightily effective against the Phyrexians.

 


 8. Lorwyn/Shadowmoor

 

 Number of previous visits: 4 – Lorwyn, Morningtide, Shadowmoor, Eventide

 Year of introduction: 2007

 Thematic identity: Lorwyn and Shadowmoor were two alternating aspects of the same plane, based on Celtic folklore, with a strong inspiration from Shakespeare's A Midsummer's Night Dream. Lorwyn was an idyllic forest world with no oceans and no Humans, perpetually existing in midsummer and daytime light, and ruled by arrogant Elves who use beauty as a social divide. Every 300 years, Lorwyn would morph into its opposite counterpart, Shadowmoor, where it's always dusk and the Elves are humble. The two facets were fused together into one after the events of Eventide, but we haven't returned to witness the results yet.

 How the Invasion ended: It appears that the Elves of the new Lorwyn/Shadowmoor still enforce their aesthetic segregation, separating the "perfects" from the "eyeblights". Luckily, everyone on the plane was so offended by the ugliness of the Phyrexians that they worked together for the very first time, successfully warding off the unsightly invaders. The Phyrexians didn't see that coming.


 9. Theros

 

 Number of previous visits: 4 – Theros, Born of the Gods, Journey into Nyx, Theros Beyond Death

 Year of introduction: 2013

 Thematic identity: The top-down Ancient Greece setting, complete with Gods, heroes, monsters, and whatnot. It was the native plane of the late Gideon, and the one where Elspeth started accumulating experience to reach her current transcendent state, by slaying enormous Hydras, fighting treacherous Gods, facing and then escaping death. Theros contains two mystical sub-planes: Nyx, which is the night sky where the Gods dwell, and the subterranean Underworld, the afterlife destination for every mortal who dies on the plane.

 How the Invasion ended: The compleated Ajani led the Phyrexian war efforts here. The invaders managed to convert the Gods by Phyrexianizing their believers, since the Gods on Theros are merely a manifestation of people's faith in them. Ephara was one of the few Gods who escaped this destiny, and she helped the citizens endure long enough for the New Capenna Angels to descend on the plane, finally turning the tides of an increasingly hopeless battle. Ultimately, Kaya slew the Phyrexianized Heliod and Ajani was later un-compleated on New Phyrexia. Theros lost most of its Gods, making it one of the planes that suffered the most dramatic consequences of the Invasion.

 Famous defenders: The Underworld proved rather difficult for the Phyrexians to conquer, in no small measure due to its extremely vicious inhabitants, like the insatiable titan Kroxa, released by the God Athreos as a last resort, with the cerberus Kunoros assigned as his guardian. A veritable buddy cop movie with a mythical twist.


 10. Alara

 

 Number of previous visits: 3 – Shards of Alara, Conflux, Alara Reborn

 Year of introduction: 2008

 Thematic identity: A large plane that was once fractured into five "Shards" with different cultures, settings, and mana affiliations (the knightly Bant, the technological Esper, the dark Grixis, the volcanic Jund, and the tropical Naya). The event called "Conflux" reunited the shards, but Alara is one of those major planes that the story never circled back to after the original block, so we don't exactly know what it looks like right now. The names of the Shards have become shorthand for the combinations of the three allied colors they're composed of. Some well-known planeswalkers are native of Alara: Ajani is from Naya, Tezzeret from Esper.

 How the Invasion ended: The Maelstrom is the point where the five Shards converge. It came to be after the Conflux (which was orchestrated by Nicol Bolas, by the way, as a way to regain his godlike powers of old). It's a very unstable, very dangerous storm of mana, with unthinkable beings emerging from it. The Phyrexians weren't aware of that.


 11. Tarkir

 

 Number of previous visits: 3 – Khans of Tarkir, Fate Reforged, Dragons of Tarkir

 Year of introduction: 2014

 Thematic identity: Tarkir is a mix of inspirations from real-world Eastern Asian sources. The plane's five warring factions are each based on a different historical political or cultural entity from the Asian continent: the Abzan on the Persian Empire; the Jeskai on the Chinese Shaolin Monks; the Sultai on the Cambodian Khmer; the Mardu on the Mongol Empire (plus some Japanese elements); and the Temur on the Siberian cutures. Notably, the factions complete Alara's triplets by pairing each color with its two opposites rather than its two neighbours, and their names have been used since to indicate such combinations. But Tarkir is also a Dragon-ruled plane, and the plane that suffered a fate-altering time manipulation when Sarkhan went back in time and restored the extinct Dragons' existence in order to save Ugin.

 How the Invasion ended: Unfortunately for Elesh Norn, the invasion happened in the revised timeline where the Dragonlords reign supreme, and a horde of ancient angry Dragons isn't the easiest of foe to overcome. The Phyrexians hadn't geared themselves up for that.

 Famous defenders: Surrak is the Hunt Caller of the Atarka Clan; Goreclaw is the fearsome Bear no hunter ever survived meeting. Together, they were easily able to keep the Temur territory free of Phyrexians. In the Mardu regions, Zurgo was once the Khan before the timeline was changed; now an outcast, he still had the gall to propose a partnership to a Dragonlord, the wise Ojutai, who rules over the white and blue components of what once were the Jeskai.

 


 12. Kaladesh

 

 Number of previous visits: 3 – Magic Origins (partial), Kaladesh, Aether Revolt

 Year of introduction: 2015

 Thematic identity: Kaladesh is sort of a steampunk version of India. The plane has the peculiarity of hosting a large amount of Aether in the atmosphere, which provides a free energy source for all kinds of exquisitely crafted, retro-futuristic mechanical marvels. It's the home plane of Chandra and Saheeli.

 How the Invasion ended: Jin-Gitaxias was eager to put his claws on the Aetherflux Reservoir, but the Kaladesh's population had the advantage of having two heroic planeswalkers on their side, with Chandra and Saheeli fully alerting them of the incoming threat beforehand and giving detailed instructions on how to face it. Chandra's own mother, Pia Nalaar, oversaw the Artificers creating the defenses in the city of Ghirapur. Saheeli built beautiful and unstoppable robotic Dinosaurs, inspired by the living counterparts from her girlfriend Huatli's home plane of Ixalan. The Phyrexians were caught off guard by that.

 Famous defenders: Amidst the confusion, former officer Baral managed to escape his imprisonment, and then received assistance from the notorious Pirate Kari Zev – Baral's actions during the invasion would later earn him an official pardon. Alongside this strange duo, Kari Zev's pet Monkey Ragavan found himself fighting on the shoulder of another valiant Kaladeshian lady, the genius scientist Rashmi.

 


 13. Fiora

 

 Number of previous visits: 2 – Conspiracy, Conspiracy: Take the Crown

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: Fiora is the exclusive setting of the Conspiracy sets, although it actually debuted in the 2012 comic book The Spell Thief. It's a plane inspired to Renaissance-era Italy. It's the native turf of the Goblin Daretti and the late Dack Fayden.

 How the Invasion ended: Marchesa D'Amati, nicknamed "the Black Rose", is the Machiavellian Queen of the High City of Paliano, the seat of the plane's political and economical power. Apparently, her iron fist, her determination and her inescapable Assassins were enough to stop the invasion in its tracks. The Phyrexians had no countermeasures to that.


 14. Amonkhet

 

 Number of previous visits: 2 – Amonkhet, Hour of Devastation

 Year of introduction: 2017

 Thematic identity: This is the plane inspired on Ancient Egypt, whose theriocephalic Gods physically walk the land among their worshippers. Nicol Bolas exerted his nefarious influence on Amonkhet, engineering a centuries-old belief system that did nothing but serve his own master plan. Once the old Dragon's machinations were foiled at the end of the War of the Spark, the plane was left a heap of desolate ruins, with only one of the protector Gods still standing, the unshakable Hazoret.

 How the Invasion ended: Vorinclex himself led the assault on Amonkhet, but the hardened survivors of Bolas's schemes resolutely faced the new threat, with Hazoret as their living emblem. It turned out the native lazotep mineral acts as a retardant for the glistening oil. Also, the two ancestral Insect Gods still alive, the Scarab God and the Locust God, emerged from the sands and silently fought alongside the Amonkhet population. This bought enough time for Hazoret to ultimately ignite the oil in the invaders' veins with her spear, burning them all alive. The Phyrexians didn't sign up for that.

 Famous defenders: The implacable Jackal-headed goddess and her supremely loyal champion Djeru – one can't really find stauncher defenders in all of the Multiverse.


 15. Ixalan

 

 Number of previous visits: 2 – Ixalan, Rivals of Ixalan

 Year of introduction: 2017

 Thematic identity: Ixalan is a plane inspired to Mesoamerican civilizations like Maya and Aztecs, but reimagined as contemporary of Dinosaurs, and partially as Merfolk. The world also includes a continent of white-aligned Vampires reminiscent of Spanish and Portuguese Conquistadores, and its oceans are theater of a reenactment of the Golden Age of Piracy.

 How the Invasion ended: The Humans of the Sun Empire, the Vampires of the Legion of Dusk, and the Pirates banded together against the aggressors, preemptively warned by Huatli, who summoned the plane's Elder Dinosaurs to her aid. The Phyrexians were surprised by that.

 Famous defenders: Ixalan is the place where the Azorius Senate's namesake parun planeswalked to from Ravnica and was ultimately trapped. The ancient Sphinx didn't remain idle in the face of the invasion, though, and fought alongside the Vampire saintess Elenda. Meanwhile, the Vampire explorer Mavren Fein followed and complemented the rampage of the Elder Dinosaur Ghalta.

 


 16. Ulgrotha

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Homelands

 Year of introduction: 1995

 Thematic identity: Ulgrotha is the setting of the old expansion Homelands. It's a plane ravaged by an apocalyptic war, which left it mostly covered in a "Dead Zone". It was a first attempt of creating a world with horror connotations, populated by Vampires, Werewolves, witches and assorted monsters. It wasn't deemed successful, and the creation of Innistrad many years later further sealed the chances of a return to Ulgrotha.

 How the Invasion ended: Former planeswalker and proverbial old crone Ravi Sengir, the adopted grandmother of Baron Sengir, took to the streets and started mauling invaders with her black magic. The Phyrexians didn't arrange for that.


 17. Mercadia

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Mercadian Masques

 Year of introduction: 1999

 Thematic identity: A mercantile plane where the original skyskhip Weatherlight crash-landed once. The Humans of the plane are the descendants of the Thran, the Goblins, called Kyren, are larger and more intelligent than their Multiverse average. Everyone is either hedonistic or self-serving.

 How the Invasion ended: Apparently the Kyren still remember deathproof Weatherlight's cabin boy Squee and were inspired enough by his legend to mount a successful defense of the plane. The Phyrexians somehow couldn't match that.


 18. Kaldheim

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Kaldheim

 Year of introduction: 2009

 Thematic identity: First introduced with a card in the original Planechase, it's a top-down setting based on Norse mythology. It's actually composed by a number of separate mini-planes, the Ten Realms (inspired to the Nine Worlds of Norse cosmology), kept together by the World Tree (a reference to Yggdrasil) and separated by a void called Cosmos. One of the Realms is inhabited by the Gods, one by the mortal Humans, the others by Elves, Giants, Trolls, Valkyries and whatnot.

 How the Invasion ended: The World Tree was key to the Phyrexians' plans, as the fragment of it stolen by Vorinclex allowed for the creation of Realmbreaker, the Invasion Tree – Elesh Norn's main instrument of conquest. But when Realmbreaker wrapped itself around its progenitor, the people of Kaldheim decided to burn down the great tree rather than see it corrupted. Later, Wrenn bonded with Realmbreaker and took control of its powers, making it possible for the Capenna Angels to swarm the Multiverse with their righteous fury and deadly halo. The Phyrexians couldn't deal with that.

 Famous defenders: Esika, the Goddess of the Tree, is currently supervising the regrowth of the World Tree. During the invasion, she fought on her signature cat-trained chariot alongside the blind seer Inga. Previous reports of Esika's death had been greatly exaggerated.


 19. Regatha

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Magic Origins (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2009

 Thematic identity: Introduced in the novel The Purifying Fire, it's a volcanic plane mostly known for Keral Keep, the monastery where Chandra trained as a pyromancer under the guidance of Jaya Ballard. 

 How the Invasion ended: The Monks of Keral Keep did their thing with fire. The Phyrexians weren't expecting that.


 20. Vryn

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Magic Origins (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: Jace's home plane. Little is known about it, except it's ruled by Wizards and its landscape is littered with enormous "Mage-Rings" of unknown function. The first mention of Vryn was on a plane card from Planechase 2012.

 How the Invasion ended: The Mage-Rings were overloaded. The Phyrexians didn't prepare for that.


 21. Kylem

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Battlebond

 Year of introduction: 2018

 Thematic identity: The setting of Battlebond, which didn't expand on its lore much. The only known fact is that the fancy gladiatorial games held in the Valor's Reach arena are very important to the population.

 How the Invasion ended: The arena competitors turned their attention to the invaders. The Phyrexians hadn't planned for that.


 22. Eldraine

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Throne of Eldraine (upcoming: Wilds of Eldraine)

 Year of introduction: 2019

 Thematic identity: A setting that combine together fairy tales and Arthurian myths, with knights, courts, curses and enchanted forests. It's the native plane of the twin (former) planeswalkers Rowan and Will Kenrith – who are now also the rulers of the main kingdom, due to the passing of their father.

 How the Invasion ended: After suffering heavy losses, including several of its monarchs, the plane was accidentally saved by the mischievous Faerie Rankle, who used a wish to make a love potion rain down on the invaders, resulting in them falling madly in love with him, and chasing him to their deaths. The Phyrexians didn't really anticipate that.

 Famous defenders: Rankle was accompanied by the Dwarf king Torbran, whose Ring of Three Wishes is what the prankster fae used to randomly accomplish his absurd gambit that in the end also cost Rankle his life.


 23. Ikoria

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Ikoria: Land of Behemoths

 Year of introduction: 2020

 Thematic identity: "Monster World", a land inhabited by giant kaiju, unpredictable mutants, and the Humans who struggle to survive this environment. It's divided in "triomes", based on the same color triplets as Tarkir, but with the center of the triplet actually being the color in opposition to the other two.

 How the Invasion ended: A compleated Lukka launched a devastating strike on his home plane, but was faced by Vivien Reid and the Ikorian, led by the dauntless Jirina Kudro. Ultimately, the giant monsters of the plane proved too strong to overcome, especially after they developed mutations that made them immune to the glistening oil. The Phyrexians didn't train for that.

 Famous defenders: Among the plane's mega-monsters, gigantic Ape Kogla and giant Turtle Yidaro fought side to side. It's technically an apocryphal "King Kong and Gamera" reference, but Yidaro has a Godzilla skin too, so that also works.


 24. Arcavios

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Strixhaven

 Year of introduction: 2021

 Thematic identity: Arcavios is the little-known name of the plane where Strixhaven University is located. It's an old plane with a rich ancient history, and was once two distinct planes that mysteriously merged together – perhaps the reason why Arcavios has now two suns.

 How the Invasion ended: Liliana being currently one of the professors at Strixhaven helped planned the plane's defenses ahead of the invasion. Ultimately, the students casting the Invocation of the Founders (the powerful spell originally used by the five Founder Dragons to create the school) wiped away the invaders, if at the sacrifice of many teachers. The Phyrexians had not predicted that.

 Famous defenders: The courage and resourcefulness of brilliant students like Quintorius, Zimone, and Dina proved a crucial factor to the plane's survival.

 


 25. Capenna

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Streets of New Capenna

 Year of introduction: 2022

 Thematic identity: Capenna is the presumed name of the plane where the current metropolis of New Capenna is located. The city sports an elaborate Art Deco style and is inspired to early 20th century gangster fiction, with clashing criminal syndicates, a glamorous urban setting, and advanced technology including guns and cars. The rest of the plane is in ruins, though, the remnants of a world almost entirely erased by the original Phyrexian Invasion. Elspeth comes from here, as hinted in the 2009 webcomic Honor Bound, or at least has spent her childhood here, but she had forgotten about her origins until recently.

 How the Invasion ended: The Capenna Angels, who produce the anti-phyresis substance known as halo, were always going to be the critical factor in the invasion. But the Angels had long left Capenna, so Elesh Norn sent their compleated counterpart Atraxa to take control of the plane's halo reserves, routinely exploited by the crime families as a prime commodity. Eventually, the five families put aside their differences and fought back, the Angels returned, and Atraxa was crushed when an entire neighborhood was dropped on her. The Phyrexians didn't foresee that.

 Famous defenders: Rebellious daughter and graffiti artist Errant led the Capennan resistance. Secretly watching over her was Giada, the last of the Capenna Angels still on the plane before their return.


 26. Muraganda

 

 Number of previous visits: 2 – Future Sight (partial), Planechase (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2007

 Thematic identity: A prehistoric plane mentioned on a couple of Future Sight cards. Due to Muraganda Petroglyphs, players expect the plane to support "vanilla matters" mechanics, but it's unlikely it would (as Mark Rosewater repeatedly stated it's not a very good idea for a theme), if we ever get to visit it in a full-fledged set.

 How the Invasion ended: There are primordial Oozes on the plane – The Mimeoplasm is one of those – and they weren't happy about being invaded. The Phyrexians definitely didn't see that coming.


 27. Segovia

 

 Number of previous visits: 2 – Legends (partial), Modern Horizons (partial)

 Year of introduction: 1994

 Thematic identity: Segovia is Magic's Lilliput: a plane where everything is minuscule (at about 1:100 scale compared to your average plane). It's sort of a meme, created essentially as a joke after Segovian Leviathan from Legends was printed with stats that seemed to wildly contradict its flavor. It's occasionally still referenced, as proven by Segovian Angel from Modern Horizons. All we know about it is that it's a largely aquatic world, and as of March of the Machine, we even learned the name of one legendary Serpent that lives there. Segovia's opposite plane, where everything is gigantic (so Magic's take on Swift's Brobdingnag), is called Gargantikar.

 How the Invasion ended: Usually, planeswalkers on Segovia automatically shrink to the size they'd have if they were natives of the plane, but the Phyrexians didn't actually planeswalk there, they were transported via Realmbreaker. So regular Phyrexian troopers were as high as skyscraper on Segovia. Two were deemed enough of a conquering force, but despite their dimensions, the local fauna took care of them. Somehow. Segovia really is a never-ending gag.


 28. Moag

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Planechase (partial)

 Year of introduction: 1998

 Thematic identity: A bright, pastoral world that Urza briefly visited once during the events of the 1998 novel Planeswalker.

 How the Invasion ended: Dryads and Treefolk got angry and raised "a shield of living summer". It's apparently impassable. The Phyrexians didn't know that.

 


 29. Pyrulea

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – 2009 Gateway promos

 Year of introduction: 1999

 Thematic identity: An odd plane composed by a Dyson sphere of forest, i.e. a woodland megastructure with a star at its center. It's most likely an artificial plane. The Thran planeswalker Dyfed took Yawgmoth there during the events of the 1999 prequel novel The Thran. The Future Sight card Horizon Canopy is considered a preview of the plane's appearance.

 How the Invasion ended: It turned out the enormous Beasts that roam the interior surface of the sphere were able to break the branches of the Invasion Tree, denying the invaders further access. The Phyrexians didn't make preparations for that.

 


 30. Karsus

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – 2010 Gateway promos

 Year of introduction: 2010

 Thematic identity: It's a plane made of crystals, some of which take sentient form as Elementals. Viashinos also live on the plane.

 How the Invasion ended: The Elemental crystals merged together to create colossal entities. And the refractional properties of all of Karsus crystals are particularly dangerous. The Phrexians lacked intelligence about that.

 


 31. Azgol

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Planechase 2012 (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: Azgol appears as a bleak, inhospitable world, covered in ashes resulting from heavy volcanic activity. The ashen Elementals of the plane are undead beings.

 How the Invasion ended: If you approach Azgol's main volcano without giving an offering to the godlike entity inside, unspeakable things happen. The Phyrexians hadn't heard about that.

 


 32. Belenon

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Planechase 2012 (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: A knightly world inhabited by Humans as well as several types of humanoid animals. It's reportedly very windy, so the locals have myths, practices and beliefs linked to the wind.

 How the Invasion ended: The idealistic Knights of Belenon faced the invaders head-on in open combat. The Phyrexians were taken aback by that.

  


 33. Ergamon

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Planechase 2012 (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: A jungle plane filled with all kinds of exotic fauna.

 How the Invasion ended: In an unprecedented twist, the plane's predators and preys showed a united front against the invaders. The Phyrexians had no answer to that.


 34. Xerex

 

 Number of previous visits: 1 – Planechase 2012 (partial)

 Year of introduction: 2012

 Thematic identity: An incomprehensible, kaleidoscopic world with reality-bending, Escherian geometry.

 How the Invasion ended: Just by setting foot on the unfathomable, non-Euclidean plane, the literal-minded invaders were instantly driven mad and ceased to function. The Phyrexians could have really used some preliminary research here.

 


 35. Gobakhan

 

 Number of previous visits: 0

 Year of introduction: 2019

 Thematic identity: A desolate plane covered in sand and illuminated by two suns. The population is constantly threatened by two endless sand storms, called the Eastern Cloud and the Western Cloud, containing lethal grains of diamond. The monks of the Order of the Shield Mage are the only defense agaisnt this hazardous natural phenomenon. The planeswalker Teyo was one of them, as narrated in the 2019 novel War of the Spark: Ravnica.

 How the Invasion ended: The shieldmages are able to create impenetrable barriers, and the diamond storms can easily pierce the flesh and tear down the metal in the biomechanical bodies of the invaders. The Phyrexians had no previous knowledge of that.

 


 36. Tolvada

 

 Number of previous visits: 0

 Year of introduction: 2019

 Thematic identity: Tolvada is Kaya's home plane, as mentioned in the 2019 novel War of the Spark: Forsaken. Unsurprisingly, there are ghosts there.

 How the Invasion ended: The ghosts of Tolvada did some thing or other to the invading force. The Phrexians at this point were so tired of fighting the worst planned invasion in the history of time, they just gave up.


 INDEX

 AlaraAmonkhetArcaviosAzgolBelenonCapennaDominariaEldraineErgamonFioraGobakhanIkoriaInnistradIxalanKaladeshKaldheimKamigawaKarsusKylemLorwyn/ShadowmoorMercadiaNew PhyrexiaMoagMuragandaPyruleaRavnicaRegathaSegoviaShandalarTarkirTherosTolvadaUlgrothaVrynXerexZendikar.


 APPENDIX: MORE PLANES

  • Rath: an artificial plane created by the original Phyrexians and used as a waypoint during the first invasion. Visited 7 times (full setting in Tempest, Stronghold, Exodus, and Nemesis; partial in Urza's Destiny, Planeshift, and Apocalypse)
  • Phyrexia: now also known as Old Phyrexia; it's the plane Yawgmoth took over and made his seat of power at the time of the first Phyrexian Invasion. Partial setting of 2 expansions (Urza's Saga and Apocalypse)
  • Rabiah: the semi-official name for the setting of the very first Magic expansion, Arabian Nights. It adapts directly the source material, the One Thousand and One Nights Middle Eastern folk tales, rather than just being inspired by it. As such, it's the most unlikely plane to ever be revisited, as established by the namesake Rabiah Scale. It's technically a collection of one thousand and one sub-planes (see what they did there?).
  • Serra's Realm: the plane of pure white mana created by the eponymous planeswalker-turned-goddess. It was partially visited during Urza's Saga.
  • Bolas's Meditation Realm: the small plane that Nicol Bolas used as a personal refuge and has now become his prison, with Ugin as his guardian.
  • Shenmeng, the Plane of Mountains and Seas: the setting of Global Series: Jiang Yanggu & Mu Yanling, and home of the two titular planeswalkers. It's based on Chinese myths and folklore.