Apocalypse

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Apocalypse
APC logo.jpg
 
Set symbol
{APC_symbol}
Symbol description
Yawgmoth's mask
Design team
Paul Peterson (lead)
Randy Buehler
Charlie Cuturza
Mark Rosewater
Teeuwynn Woodruff
Development team
Mike Elliott (lead)
Randy Buehler
Charlie Cuturza
Michael Donais
Robert Gutschera
with contributions from Brady Dommermuth
Beth Moursund
Art Director
Dana Knutson & Ron Spears
Release date
June 4, 2001
Themes and mechanics
Disciples, Envoys, Flagbearers, Sanctuaries, "Syphon" creatures, Split cards, Volvers
Keywords and/or ability words
Kicker
Set size
143 (55 Common 44 Uncommon 44 Rare)
Expansion code
APC[1]
Development codename
Shanghai
Invasion block sets
Invasion Planeshift Apocalypse
Magic: The Gathering chronology
7th Edition Apocalypse Odyssey

Apocalypse is the twenty-third Magic: The Gathering expansion and was released in June 2001 as the third set and second small expansion in the Invasion block.

Set details[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse featured 143 black-bordered cards (55 commons, 44 uncommons and 44 rares). Its expansion symbol is Yawgmoth's mask.[2] [3] Like Invasion and Planeshift, Apocalypse prominently features multicolored cards. Unlike its predecessors, Apocalypse focused on cards with "enemy" color pairings. Examples of the enemy color theme include painlands, split cards, cards with enemy color kicker costs (e.g. Orim's Thunder), cards with two enemy color kicker costs (the Volver cycle), cards with abilities requiring an enemy color (e.g. Angelfire Crusader, enchantments which gave bonuses if you controlled permanents of an enemy color (the Sanctuary cycle) and cards with enemy color casting costs. Apocalypse also expanded on the kicker block mechanic and introduced enemy-color gradient text boxes on lands to match the friendly-color ones added in Invasion.

Storyline[edit | edit source]

The Coalition forces hurled their might at the Stronghold, now overlaid onto the swamps of Urborg. Urza Planeswalker lead a powerful group of planeswalkers to Phyrexia itself, hoping to destroy the invaders in their home. Gerrard and Urza are forced to fight each other in an arena, and when one kills the other, the loser is returned to life by Yawgmoth's power and the two must fight again. Eventually, Urza is decapitated and Gerrard escapes with the head, only to find himself in the Stronghold throne room, with a crazed Crovax standing over the broken form of Squee. Sisay, Karn, Tahngarth and the rest of the Weatherlight crew desperately search the Thran Tome, attempting to figure out how the Legacy and the Weatherlight are supposed to save Dominaria. The remaining coalition forces, lead by Grizzlegom, Eladamri and Lin Sivvi fight their way to the Stronghold, where they battle Crovax's Phyrexian soldiers. When Yawgmoth himself arrives from Phyrexia, the final battle begins in earnest. Gerrard and his allies try to channel the mana from the Null Moon into a destructive beam to eradicate Yawgmoth, but fail to kill him. Without any further options, Urza, who is still alive since decapitation isn't lethal to planeswalkers, asks Gerrard to take out his powerstone eyes and place them in two sockets in Karn's chest. This completes the Legacy, forming that which legend refers to as the Legacy Weapon. Light spreads all over the world, eradicating Yawgmoth's essence. Gerrard and Urza do not survive the Weapon's activation, and the Weatherlight crashes into the ocean, its planeswalking powers permanently burned out and transferred to Karn, who has become a planeswalker in his own right.

Marketing[edit | edit source]

The cards were sold in 15-card boosters which had artwork from Anavolver, in four preconstructed theme decks and a fat pack, which is notable for being the first to include the modern set symbol spindown life counters. At Apocalypse prerelease events on May 26, 2001, a foil फंगल्शम्ब्लर् (Fungal Shambler printed in Sanskrit text) was handed out. The set was accompanied by the novel of the same name.

Token[edit | edit source]

A 1/1 Goblin Soldier Token for Goblin Trenches was released as a Magic Player Reward.[4]

Mechanics[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse saw the continued use of kicker and split cards.

Each color contains a few creatures that have a new kind of ability, sometimes forming a vertical cycle. For example, blue gets Whirlpool creatures, red gets Bloodfire creatures, etc.

  • Bloodfire — The ability to pay {R}, sacrifice the card then deal damage to creatures and players. A vertical cycle of creatures were printed with the ability plus an aura that granted a creature the ability. (see cycles)
  • Flagbearer — As long as you have one in play, any spell or ability your opponent plays that can target a Flagbearer must target a Flagbearer. If a spell has multiple targets, only one of the targets needs to be a Flagbearer. There were 2 White Flagbearer creatures (Standard Bearer and Coalition Honor Guard) and an aura (Coalition Flag) that granted a creature the Flagbearer subtype as well as the inherent ability.
  • Penumbra — Which brings a black token creature of the same power/toughness into play whenever the original green creature is put into a graveyard. (see cycles)
  • Syphon — Phyrexian abominations that take some life from their controller in exchange for an equal number of cards (e.g. When Phyrexian Rager comes into play you drew a card and lose 1 life). Phyrexian Gargantua and the enchantment Phyrexian Arena are also considered part of the "syphon" mechanic.
  • Whirlpool — Drake and Merfolk that allow the owner to shuffle cards in their hand into their library, and then draw that many cards. (see cycles)

Creature types[edit | edit source]

The following creature types are introduced in this expansion: Flagbearer, Volver.

The following creature types are used in this expansion but also appear in previous sets: Angel, Ape, Beast, Cat, Drake, Dwarf, Elf, Giant, Goblin, Golem, Horror, Kavu, Merfolk, Minotaur, Ship (later changed to Metathran), Snake, Soldier, Treefolk, Wall, Wizard, Zombie.

Cycles[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse has ten cycles and 4 vertical cycles.

Vertical cycles[edit | edit source]

Bloodfire Cycle

Pairs[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse has one parallel pair:

Reprints[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse has no reprints

Notable cards[edit | edit source]

Preconstructed decks[edit | edit source]

Apocalypse has four theme decks.

Theme deck name Colors included
{W} {U} {B} {R} {G}
Burial W B G
Pandemonium W U B R G
Swoop U G
Whirlpool U R

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wendy Wallace. (August 12, 2004.) “Ask Wizards - August, 2004”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Brady Dommermuth. (October 31, 2006.) “Ask Wizards - October, 2006”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Magic Arcana. (August 02, 2007.) “Ichor Eyes and the Mask of Yawgmoth”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
  4. Magic Arcana. (May 27, 2002.) “Player Rewards tokens”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.

External links[edit | edit source]