I Broke the Color Pie
The building blocks of any Plane is the color pie and across the multiverse there is always a fine balance of these colors, with no one color truly overpowering the others. You could say that this is routed in game play reasons as we wouldn't want a set with eighty percent white cards, and yet I would say it's something far more important to the identity of any given Plane. You see it's this perfect balance of colors which hold the color pie together and without this balance things start to get really weird. Sure I have spoken about colors feeling stronger on some Planes like that of Black seeping into much of Amonkhet, or how we have seen an odd divergence with the Shards of Alaraa, but what I am talking about today is something far more drastic.
What I am about to posit today is a total imbalance of the color pie, to the point where a single color is more than than the core of a combination or Plane. Instead we will be discussing the idea of, what I will call, a dominant color. This dominant color will be of such a presence on the Plane that the other colors must bend to its gravitational pull or be crushed by it. I hope you are ready to do a bit of a thought experiment with me as I intend to illustrate this phenomenon by creating examples of five Planes where one color has vastly more control than any of the other colors on it. We will see what effect this has on allies of the color and more importantly how this effects enemies of a given color. I want to start the experiment off with a Plane dominated by White Mana.
We know that if White had its way it would pull everyone under its banner and on a Plane where it's the dominant color it gets its wish. This primarily white mana plane is one controlled by a single governing body spread across the entire Plane. It is a theocratic monarchy, one who rules through order and law, and have nearly rid the Plane of its chaotic elements, and by Chaotic elements I mean Black and Red. In this world Red has been subjugated and relegated to working camps where they can be kept in check and made useful to the rest of society. Of course they push back against their oppressors at every chance they get but because of their small numbers they have little recourse. Black on the other hand isn't so lucky, they feel the hand of White the heaviest, having been nearly all wiped out in Whites early crusades.
Black is now scattered across the Plane, most are homeless and desolate, living off of the pity of others, never able to grasp at anything more. This way of life is crushing for Black but any opportunities it attempts to take for itself is swiftly crushed. If they had it their way the ruling class would be dealt with and it would be them who would hold onto the seat of power. As you can see White has no time for its enemies in its perfect world. Typically White must do what it can to stifle chaos but must accept the other colors, sure we have seen them combine with these colors with some success and yet if it could, its ideals would be the only ones everyone lived by.
Now this isn't the only side of it, Whites allies are given more breathing room than its enemies and are allowed to compliment this Plane. In the case of Blue, they facilitate grand projects dictated by White, projects which push the society further and make life better for all who tow the line. Good citizens have what they need because of this push for technology or magic, and yet these same tools are also used to monitor its citizens and uphold laws as well. On the other side Whites ally Green is tasked with maintaining the agricultural balance of the Pane. There is a fine space between technology and nature in a world consisting mostly of White mana. The trees and animals are just as intertwined as the technology here. Creating a perfectly balanced world of prosperity for those who don't bring chaos to this world.
When Blue has control of a Plane it does just that, control its every aspect. This Plane would be one of progress and efficiency. Anything that isn't of use would be shed and made into something more. This would stifle art and wasteful activities, and yet the trade-off would be the valuing of knowledge and progress above all else. Of course this can have dire effects on one of Blue enemies, Red, a color who is smothered by such restrictions. Blue would pay no mind though and would send Red to reserves where they would not infect anything else with their chaos, and as an added effect, would be able to be studied, for there is value in all things. Much like Red Green would be sent to their own reserves more so out of necessity, as there would be hardly any nature left on this Plane, as Blue has traded in trees for carbon digesting machines.
Just as Red, Green would be stuck in small biomes to be studied or worse yet experimented on. There would be no asking of what is right or wrong its a matter of progress and these colors do not abide by progress. On the flip side Black would be a great asset to its ally Blue, in that Black would be tasked with searching the darkest places for forbidden magics. They would also be the right hand of Blue on this Plane, and would be tasked with infiltrating every corner of it and its factions, trading in secrets through its spy networks as there would be a level of mistrust and curiosity in a Blue driven Plane, as each blue faction would want to uncover the inner workings of each other.
Now of course a better world must be facilitated and this requires structure. This is where White comes in, as it would be eager to participate in the shaping of a better world. White on this Plane uses its expertise to facilitate in governance and the creation and running of supreme schools. Schools the size of cities, with labs for every imaginable study, all held together by the clerical work and organizations of White.
A Plane where Black dominated the color pie would result in a world with no overarching government control. Instead it would be a place with a complete free market, one where gangs, cults, and corporation's ruled. Any conceivable law would be overridden by profits and power. While this would be detrimental to many citizens it would benefit the few clever enough to grasp for greatness. In a Plane like this Black's enemies would struggle to survive. Green would find all of its resources plundered; forests would be clear cut, ores stripped and water polluted. Green would be forced to find a place in this desolate world where they could foster some growth but even this would be futile, as the constant pollution and little care for the environment would turn the Plane into a shell of what it once was.
With White the story is a little different. White would attempt to make communities where it could, aiming to find structure in this lawless world. These communities would be for those who reject the cooperate greed of the Plane and instead want a simple life of moral purity. They would stand in stark rejection of what the rest of the Plane was. Unfortunately for them they would often find their communities raided and destroyed for nothing more than the joy it brings to Black and Red mana.
Speaking of Red, an ally of Black, they would facilitate Blacks hedonistic side. Running red light districts and places of pleasure, areas found in every city where anything goes and your darkest wish can be fulfilled. On the other side we would have Blue. This color would be heavily involved in the corporate side of things. Aiding Black by collecting as much data as they could on each group and citizen. For Blue information would be a currency it would exchange for freedom to do its own research.
In a world populated primarily by Red there would be very little to no structure. It would be a Plane with small tribes or colonies scattered about. These tribes would all pitch in what they needed to survive but no more, instead the meaning of life would be life itself. Experiences would take prescience over structure and profit. A true rejection of normal society, a rejection which is felt across the Plane as no formal building up of rigid society would last long, as raiding would be common place. In a world like this Green would flourish. It would shed every once of normality and tradition and instead fall more into its animal side.
It would take on the traits of the animal kingdom fully, with feral elves and wild beasts roaming where they please. Black in the same way would be allowed to do as it pleases, with only one stipulation, no action can be taken to oppress others, instead it must simply focus on its human desires and shed its ambitions instead. Things get interesting when we start to talk about how a red dominant Plane would effect its enemy colors. White in this way would almost take on a reverse role and be considered the radicals of this Plane. Perhaps through religious or moral fanaticism it would lash out at Red society.
They would attempt to bring structure to a chaotic Plane through force but would never be able to gain much traction, rather they would be a constant thorn in the side of Red. Blue on the other hand would simply rather stay hidden and be left unchecked to study and work on its projects in peace. No lasting project would be safe and so they would tend to lean into magic instead of technology. Becoming masters of illusions to and any manner of staying hidden so that they can be left alone to uncover the secrets of the Plane.
Green, when dominant, unchecked and undisturbed would grow rampant across the Plane. The plants and animals would reach their full potential. The jungles would be thick with life and the humanoid inhabitants would be second to the world around them, living nomadic lifestyles with no permanent shelters. The closest thing to civilization would be what space White is allowed to craft, once again nothing taking away from the land, everything must be integrated into it. They would craft small communities in the canopies and caves; their laws would be orally handed down and based in those provided by the animal kingdom, not that of the human design.
White would have to sacrifice structure but could find peace and purpose in this life. Red on the other hand is left to roam free running through the jungles, surfing on the seas and laying on the open grass of the Planes. They have no worries and no thought, and would descending deeper into their animal side. With wild paint and bare skin they are free. Now while these colors are allowed their freedom there are other colors who must be kept in check so that they do not take from the land or try and warp it into something else. For Blue they find themselves in a world where technology is forbidden and instead are only allowed to study magics which will help the land grow and nothing more.
Because of this Blue becomes a small group of mages who work tirelessly at the only approved magics they are allowed to practice, of course some stray from the path due to their constant curiosity, but these heretics are dealt with swiftly so that their dangerous ideas do not spread. For Black, they simply can't be trusted. Black is sent to the furthest bogs and swamps away from anything precious that could be corrupted. In these places Black festers like a an old wound, their land a place of rot and death, and it is there where they descend into a putrid version of itself.
As you can see when a single color has dominance over a Plane the results are drastic. The natural balance we see in the multiverse is key to the design of a Plane. Without it there is no room for each color to be itself. What's more is that this balance is what makes each color what it is. What I mean is that naturally a color is what it is because of the push and pull of its neighbors and enemies, so when you disrupt this the color becomes extreme and its hatred of its enemies becomes stronger. What we witnessed is allies being bent, their ideal warping to match the dominant color.
We saw enemies being punished and suppressed so that nothing that was their own could be said to corrupt the dominant colors Plane. I wasn't lying when I said that balance is key to a balanced multiverse. Now there is another way we could see this imbalance play out. Consider this. On a Plane where one color dominants perhaps the other colors do what they must and band together. Creating a world with two side, one side being the dominant color and the other a four color combination of the others. This idea is an interesting one and perhaps a video for another day. Don't take the balance of the multiverse for granted Planeswalker there is a reason for everything.
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