Hello everybody and welcome back for another MTG plane guide! To celebrate the launch of Kaladesh Remastered on Arena, I thought it would be fitting to cover the events on the plane to help provide a better understanding of the cards being added. Without further ado, let us jump into Kaladesh's lore!
Throughout the multiverse, there is this material known as aether, which is a blue substance that is often incorporated into magic used by Planeswalkers and certain mages. On Kaladesh, this aether is significantly more tangible, being able to be seen, touched, and even eaten by some of the planes wildlife. Due to aether's magical powers, much of the wildlife base their lifestyles on it, such as having birds migrate with it, and having trees forming spirals to leach as much of it form the air as possible.
Similar to everything else on the plane, the people of Kaladesh knew of the aether's power, yet lacked the ability to harvest it without hurting themselves. This was until a person named Avaati Vya discovered a way to harness the aether, causing an event called the Great Aether Boom. With this new source of power being accessible, the planes largest government, known as the Consulate, ended up producing and distributing ways of harvesting the aether to allow anyone to be able to use this powerful energy source. The Consulate would go on to encourage the people, who were mostly inventors themselves, to use the aether to solve any type of problem they encounter, sparking what is known now as the Inventors' Fair.
This Inventors' Fair would eventually become one of the planes most important events. Every year for an entire month, inventors would come to compete against others in terms of creating new devices, all judged by the consulate. The main types of competitions were vehicles, architecture, aether science, weapons, and animal constructs. Certain groups would rise up to compete in these different contests, the main ones being the League of Aeronauts, which is an invite only aeronaut society, the Derby Crows, who are notorious for competing and winning almost all races held, the Glint-Sleeves, who mainly design things one puts on their arms, hence the name, the Scrappers, who just want to have their robots fight each other, the Countless Gears, which are devoted to build the most complex devices ever seen, the Ground Grinders, who are a mix between the Scrappers and the Derby Crows, the Greenwheel Lifecrafters, who are dedicated on making life with their devices, and the Metalspinners, who design art with the purpose of rebelling conformity.
Despite the plane going through the equivalent of the Renaissance, there were some who started to expect the Consulate was hiding something. Whether it be silencing those who built certain types of inventions, or just hiding aether applications all together, a group had formed that would fight against the Consulate. While the Consulate did help make aether accessible, it also restricted the freedoms of the citizens, becoming a sign of oppression for them.
Before diving into the inhabitants of the plane, it is important to note that the Kaladesh's process of invention, known as Aether Cycle, is mainly led by a different species of inhabitants on the plane. The population of Kaladesh consists of elves, who inspire new projects, vedalken, who brainstorm the most practical way of making the device, dwarves, who build the devices, gremlins, who break down devices once they are no longer useful, aetherborn, who reclaim the scraps of the devices and puts the aether back into the overall system, and humans, who are essentially the grand planners of the plane. Of these species, the most interesting ones are the gremlins and the aetherborn.
Gremlins, as their name would suggest, are small creatures that enjoy to cause mischief and to please themselves. Their diet mainly consists of aether and seeing as how most machinations on the plane are powered by aether, this results in gremlins tearing apart the older devices in order to eat the delicious blue substance that was contained in it. However, due to their messy eating, much of the aether ends up flying back into the atmosphere, allowing it to be harvested once again for another device. Despite them serving crucial role in Kaladesh's ecosystem, the rest of the inhabitants of the plane do not like them as they are most often pests that just get everywhere.
As the name would suggest, the aetherborn are born from the blue substance and eventually turn back into it. The aetherborn have not existed on the plane for long, being a side effect of the aether refinement that was caused by the Great Aether Boom. The average life span of an aetherborn ranges from several months to a couple years. Due to this pitifully short lifespan, the aetherborn are constantly on the pursuit of fun and pleasure, with everything else being seen as a waste of time for them. Throughout their lifetimes, their bodies slowly decompose back into something that can be recycled back into the aether.
Pia and Kiran Nalaar
-The mother and father of a young pyromancer mage. They fled their home to try and hide her from the authorities.
-A human planeswalker who is native to Kaladesh. Her parents both died when she was young.
-A mage police officer who takes his job very seriously. He was tasked with hunting down the Nalaars.
-The official name of the group of planeswalkers who are focused on protecting the multiverse from interplanar threats. It consists of Chandra, Liliana, Gideon, Nissa, and Jace.
-A vedalken planeswalker who specializes in providing a complete analysis on any machine, discovering its weaknesses, highlight its shortcomings, as well as predicting how and when the machine will fail.
-A black human planeswalker who specializes in necromancy. She recently joined the Gatewatch after the events on Innistrad.
-A white human planeswalker who wields hieromancy, also known as protection magic. He is one of the main leaders of the Gatewatch.
-A green elf planeswalker who is capable of communing with a plane and the energies on it. She joined the Gatewatch in order to protect her home plane of Zendikar.
-A blue human planeswalker that is known for mind magic. He is the other main leader of the Gatewatch, known for his strategic plannings.
-A Elven aetherologist who is interested in the Blind Eternities that surround the plane.
-A human planeswalker who specializes in manipulating machines and metals, resulting in her being a great inventor.
-A human planeswalker from Esper. He is more metal than human and is always on the search to add new machines to himself. This led him to being the head judge of the Inventors' Fair.
-A friend of Pia and Kiran Nalaar. When Chandra had to run away from the Consulate, she seeked out Oviya to help hide her.
-An philanthropist aetherborn who has less than 60 days left to live. He is well-respected in the city and as such, has numerous connections.
-A leonin planeswalker who specializes in healing magic. He is currently on Kaladesh to track down suspicious activity by Tezzeret.
-A dragon planeswalker who has long term plans to restore himself to his older glory.
Events on the Plane
Aside from the Great Aether Boom, the first notable event for the story on this plane took place several years ago, when the renegades first started to emerge. Behind this movement was Pia and Kiran Nalaar, who inadvertently brought their young daughter, Chandra, into a life of an outlaw. Once when she was running away from the authorities, her fist started to catch on fire, discovering that she was a pyromancer. Unfortunately for her, pyromancy was illegal and it put an even larger target on her back. As a final nail in the coffin, when running away from a different group of authorities, Chandra had accidentally lit a foundry on fire, burning the entire building to the ground. In order to keep their daughter safe, the Nalaars abandoned their home in Ghirapur in order to move out to the countryside in hopes of being able to raise their daughter. Unfortunately, she was being followed by Dhiren Baral, who was dedicated on hunting them down. He found the village they were hiding in, burnt it to the ground, and executed Chandra's father right in front of her. He then was planning on executing Chandra as well for being a pyromancer, but her spark ignited, literally, and she planeswalked away.
Twelve years later, after defeating Emrakul on Innistrad, the Gatewatch was at their base of operations in Ravnica until a planeswalker named Dovin Baan came to get their help in regards to an event on Kaladesh known as the Inventors' Fair. The issue he had with the fair was with a group of vandals that were hindering the event from taking place. Unfortunately, the Gatewatch declined his request on the basis that they only focus on extra-planar threats. However, upon hearing about a group of rebels existing on Kaladesh, it gave Chandra hope that her mother might still be alive. This results in both her and Liliana planeswalking to the plane to check things out themselves. When trying to find out where Chandra had went, Dovin overheard her last name, realizing that she is the daughter of the main group of rebels.
Meanwhile on Kaladesh, Rashmi was busy at work trying to finish her project for the Inventors' Fair. The grand project she had been working on was a machine that could transport items from one place to another. However, all of the tests she employed failed, all of the flowers she had tried sending through her Planar Bridge would come back charred and desecrated. To take her mind off of it, she went to meet up with her friend Saheeli Rai, who eventually went back to test out the Bridge more. Finally, Rashmi decided to transport a pot instead, which had returned perfectly intact. The device she had made worked perfectly fine, yet could not transport living things. She immediately delivered the device to the fair and presented it to a judge.
As for what Chandra and Liliana, the two were busy stirring up trouble in Ghirapur. Chandra is rightfully angry at Dovin for being a Consulate pawn and with a bit of persuasion by Liliana, decided to take out her anger on those who had killed her parents. The two decided to track down Baral and get revenge on him, sparking something in Chandra to fight back against the establishment. Both the planeswalkers decided to track down the renegades, not to stop them like Dovin desires, but to instead add more fuel to the fire and revolt against the consulate. They reached a clearing and Liliana saw a cloaked man, pursuing him while Chandra heard someone else stirring trouble, chasing after them. Liliana had discovered Tezzeret was on the plane while Chandra had found her mother.
Afraid that Chandra would be captured under Consulate control, Pia admits to being the main person leading the rebellion, resulting in the Consulate cutting their losses and taking Pia into custody. As the Consulate was taking Pia, Chandra tried to lash out only to be stopped by Nissa, who had planeswalked to Kaladesh just in time. As the three leave, Chandra hears an old lady beckon her, only to find out that the lady was none other than Oviya Pashiri, the lady who had helped protect Chandra throughout her childhood.
With Oviya's help, Nissa and Chandra start to hunt down where Pia was being sent to, eventually landing themselves into a party being held by Yahenni. With his help, the two are able to detain and interrogate a guard who eventually leaks the place where Chandra's mother is being detained at, Dhund Prison. With this information, Oviya, Nissa and Chandra all head out to the prison, leaving Yahenni all by themself as they wanted to enjoy the last month and a half of life.
Oviya, Nissa, and Chandra would soon run into an issue however. Of all the prisons on Kaladesh, the Dhund was only ever heard about through rumors, with its real whereabouts unknown. Oviya knew that it was somewhere underneath the night markets, but beyond there she was out of ideas. With nobody else to turn to, Nissa started to attune herself to the plane, being able to follow the fainter traces of aether, which made almost a path deep below the surface. The three followed the path, only to become lost in what appeared as old service tunnels, atleast until Nissa had started to track the aether via a pipe, stumbling upon an illusionary wall. Waiting for them at the entrance to the Dhund was none other than Baral, who after taunting them, let them trigger what was known as a deadlock trap. Using his own magic, Baral was able to make a room that prohibited others magic, effectively making them stuck in a room with nowhere to go, which would then have poison enter from a vent in the bottom of the room. With no other way of escaping, the three ladies accepted death together.
Meanwhile back at Oviya's hideout, Ajani Goldmane was there trying to meet up with her. While there, he met up with a renegade known as Vatti Shadowblayde, who helped debrief him on the situation she had stumbled into. Ajani went out to the Dhund in order to try rescuing those captive in the deadlock trap. Due to his sense of smell, he was able to track down where they were being held captive, finding a pane of glass with a hand slowly being dragged down from it. He maneuvered around the trap, and was able to successfully defeat the guard who had been monitoring it, freeing the three ladies in the nick of time.
Once these four escaped the tunnels leading to the Dhund, they came across Liliana, Jace, and Gideon, who had came to the plane after discovering Tezzeret's presence on it. The group of 7 now had two issues to sort out, what was Tezzeret doing on the plane and where is Pia being led to. Luckily for them, both of these questions would be answered soon, as Jace found a flier promoting a contest between Tezzeret and Pia to see who could make the better machines given limited parts. The Gatewatch went to spectate this contest for clues, but the tides shortly went into Tezzeret's favor, forcing Chandra to jump from the stands and protect her mother. The rest of the Gatewatch followed her lead, protecting Pia. However, this was all a ploy by Tezzeret to take everyone's eyes off of the main point of the Inventors' Fair, the inventions. He had fled after having his lackeys capture everybody's machines. This did not matter to Chandra, however, who simply ran to her mother who she could finally catch up with.
With this event causing a resurgence in the renegades, the Consulate cracked down on everything, forcing curfews, among some other regulations to keep people under wraps. This lasted for around two months, which for most is not horrendous, but for one aetherborn who had little to no time left, Yahenni, this lockdown was driving them insane. On the night they are destined to die, they go out onto the streets looking for someone to comfort them on their death bed. They stumble upon an old friend, Nived, but while spending their last moments, a Consulate drone detains Nived and is about to kill him. To protect their friend, Yahenni accidentally drains the aether out of the drone, as well as the person controlling it. They feel all the anguish that person felt, yet in return, they got 12 more days to live instead of only a few minutes. To learn more about these untapped powers, as well as to hide the fact they just murdered someone, Yahenni seeked out Gonti, an infamous aetherborn smuggler, in order to find where the Gatewatch had been hiding this entire time. With their new power, Yahenni decides to join the renegades and vowed to help fight off the Consulates' increasing grasp on the plane.
Ever since the lockdown started, Tezzeret had been recruiting the winners of the Inventors' Fair to work for him, making new improvements on their already award-winning devices. One of these was Rashmi, who was recruited to continue work on her planar bridge, focusing on making it more compact and require less energy. One thing to note is that the entire time Rashmi was working on this device, she did not understand the bigger picture, that instead of simply transporting within a plane, it would transport things between planes. As she continued to work on her project, she would start to doubt Tezzeret's true intentions, as he often claimed her project was bigger than her and that she could never understand the true purpose of it. This led to her sabotaging her work, escaping from the laboratory made for these inventors, and joining the renegades.
With the renegade movement picking up momentum, Chandra and Pia seeked to recruit others to expedite everything. However they soon came to realize that nobody could join the renegades as they had all their own tools confiscated by the Consulate. This ended up raising a huge commotion, which was heard by none other than Gonti. He struck a deal with the Nalaars to help provide them with any of the gear they could need access to in return for favors down the line. With access to all sorts of tools now, the renegades worked on seizing control of the Aether Hub, a power plant that processed a good majority of the aether used in the city. Due to needing as much aether as possible to fuel the machines they were building, the renegades laid siege on the Aether Hub and took control of it.
Due to the importance of the Aether Hub, as soon as it was taken, Tezzeret schemed with Dovin Baan on how to reclaim it. The plan they came up with involved Baral and Baan taunting Chandra, feeding off of her impulsive behavior to bring troops out of position, that way a secondary team can come out and reclaim it. This plan worked almost exactly like planned, except for the fact that Baral insisted on killing Chandra for being a mage while Baan insisted that she, as well as her mother, had already served the proper sentences and that killing them would be murder. Despite this, the Consulate was able to reclaim the Aether Hub, as well as bring doubt into some of the renegades, who were concerned about whether Chandra was more of a hindrance than a useful asset.
Knowing that the Consulate would soon regain enough troops and machines to crush the renegades due to having access to the aether, they had to strike fast, planning on striking the main area of the consulate, known as the Aether Spire. This building was heavily fortified, having numerous turrets lining the bottom to prevent any ships from getting close to it, as well as being heavily reinforced at the base. To combat these turrets, the renegades came up with a simple plan, this being unleashing hordes of gremlin at the turrets to tear apart the turrets. Once these turrets are gone, they would fly in on their ships to get faster access to Tezzeret's laboratory.
With the ground troops being occupied with the onslaught of Gremlins, Liliana was able to get into the Aether Spire. At the top of the spire she met up with Tezzeret, who sworn she was going to kill him before anything worse happens. After trying to figure out his ultimate plans, she discovers that Tezzeret has been serving under Nicol Bolas, who needed the planar bridge for some reason or another. The two almost immediately started to fight with each other, with Liliana having the upper hand at first. While this fight was going on, Chandra, Gideon, and a few renegades were flying a ship that was sabotaged. Bent on dealing as much damage as possible, Chandra started to speed up the ship and crashed it into the Aether Spire. The moment when Liliana was about to finish Tezzeret off, the entire building was shaked, giving Tezzeret enough of a window to planeswalk into safety.
With Tezzeret off of the plane, there was little to no resistance from the Consulate as without of their chief Consul, the remaining Consuls did not put up much of a fight. With the government successfully toppled, the renegades would essentially replace it, with many of the relevant players in the renegades rising up to power in the reformed consulate, such as Pia. With everything on the plane tied up, the Gatewatch set out to hunt down Tezzeret and now Nicol Bolas, who have both been found going to another plane known as Amonkhet. Before they left, they asked if Ajani wanted to join the gatewatch, seeing as how he shared many of the values the group already had. He agreed and signed an oath to join them, shortly afterwards they planeswalked away, letting the citizens of Kaladesh focus on rebuilding their society.