We continue our look at Magic: Duels Origns with a dive into the characters in the game. In this installment of “Planeswalking Through Magic Duels,” Tifa helps us understand the Planeswalker, Jace!
Tifa is the founder & organizer of the Lady Planeswalkers Society (LPS). With almost 60 chapters worldwide, LPS creates welcoming, friendly environments to learn and play Magic: The Gathering regardless of gender, skill level, or anything else. Tifa also works for Xbox at Microsoft as the Global Editorial Producer for the Games Dashboard. She is a hardcore lifestyle gamer and a feminist, who enjoys combining the two. She also runs a YouTube channel with her husband about gaming as a couple.
Jace Beleren is the main protagonist of Magic: The Gathering. He is a relatable character with powerful cards.
Jace’s story starts when he was a teenager getting bullied. In the first Episode fight, Jace faces a very aggressive, intimidating red deck representing these bullies, and the battle is powerfully thematic. It’s an incredibly difficult battle because Jace’s deck is mono blue, very defensive, and can take a while to build up. With the red deck having creatures right away and lots of direct damage the pressure is on from the very beginning and the intense music really drives it home. By the time I’d defeated the bullies, I felt like the underdog had finally won.
Even Jace’s deck is strong in the flavor department with cards that use abilities that feel like mind control, such as Cancel and Separatist Voidmage. Also, the deck had spells that made me feel like I was just learning my powers, like Phantasmal Dragon that might disappear if someone notices.
After the fight, Jace uses the powers to save his life. Jace gets to know a sphinx, named Alhammarret, who becomes his trainer. Similarly to Gideon’s warden, Alhammaret is the second Episode battle. This is an interesting trope given that Magic is a game in which mentorship can improve your skill level. The trainer deck was very defensive, which made sense thematically. Phantom Warrior’s evasion won me the game.
In Episode 3 and 4, Jace infiltrates two rebel camps for Alhammaret to learn battle plans in order to stop the war as an arbiter of peace. In these battles, I had some fun with the combo: Sphinx’s Tutelage and Jace’s Phantasm – flyers for the win! During the mind reading of the second infiltration, Jace learns that Alhammaret has been manipulating his mind to abuse his powers. He even erased Jace’s memory of his Planeswalker spark uniting.
Jace confronts Alhammaret in the final Episode. This game gives Alhammaret 40 life and wants you to attempt defeating the sphinx at his own game, milling. Milling is a form of winning a game of Magic by depleting your opponent’s library. If a player is required to draw a card and no library exists, they lose the game. Unfortunately, I did not get the cards for milling, so I tried being aggressive. I tried to cast as many creatures as I could as fast as possible while getting his creatures out of the way with my control spells. It took two games but I got there!