Atheist Magic: the Gathering set

It’s Memorial Day weekend and I’m trying my damndest to have work/life separation.  This means no raging out at religion.  Instead, there will be desperate attempts to cram as much fun into three days as possible!

A lot of people liked the MTG cards I put into yesterday’s post, so today I’m going to start making an atheism MTG set, hopefully with the help of Dr. David Burger.  There will be about 250 cards to the set.  Once created, we will export them to Magic Workstation and I will attempt to organize some online drafts via the blog.  Would this interest any of you MTG nerds out there?

So what cards do you want to see and what ideas do you have?

Shall we have two distinct creature types: diplomats and firebrands?  Who should be enshrined in card format?  What should Dawkins’ card look like?
Also, while the set will have about 250 cards, there will undoubtedly be token-producers because, for realz, the atheist movement is getting huge!  If you’d like a token cards with your visage on it, leave a link to a pic in the comments.

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About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • Steven

    These cards are so much fun.

  • Kat

    My husband is a MTG geek, I never played, but aren’t some of the cards called Manna cards? You will need to change the name of the “manna” cards to something else. We wouldn’t get manna from heaven in this deck. :)

    I will certainly be forwarding this blog post link to my husband as well.

  • dr b

    specific people should be legends, such as your card would be Legendary Creature – Pirate

    for balance at common and such, “hawking” could be “Hawking’s Student” or the like, and Creature – Human Student, then i’ve no idea how quantum would work, but I like it.

    the artifact land is broken sauce, maybe just model it after the “Blue Mana Battery” style cards.

    consider color pie as well, what each color wants to do, and it’s philosophy.

    if you want your legend to be in red, consider changing to Haste and gets a +1/+1 counter when it attacks or something?

    also, pick a theme, and mechanics for the set. and make sure it shows up at common. if it’s not at common, it’s not a theme.

  • Lyz

    I can haz?

  • Lou Doench

    I have a copy of MSE, can we all play?

  • Matt Dillahunty

    JT, I’m still pissed that I wasn’t on the first set – as I’m probably the one who was most likely to appreciate it. Do the rest even have a DCI number? Were they at the latest PTQ? Do they slink down to the shop for FNMs every Friday? … Would they even know what Caw Blade is and how to sideboard for it?

    I think not.

    Tutor up one for me or I’m going to exile you. ;)

    Seriously, though…nice work.

  • JT Eberhard


    Done! :)


  • Marshall

    This. Is. Awesome.

    You’re going to need manna and that should have some alterations.

    But I will totally play with these cards.

  • Adam Lee

    Oh man, this is an awesome idea. I wasted many happy hours on MTG before I started blogging. :)

    So, can I be in the set? I’ve got a picture of myself that’s just perfect – I’ve always thought of it as my “Gandalf” picture. It’s a couple of years old now, but I think it catches the spirit of the thing:

    Do we get to suggest our own abilities and flavor text?

  • Veritas

    We need some blue counters. I think that one would be “Reality”. Two blue and one colourless: counter target spell. If target spell is countered, exile it. Kicker of 2 coloureless – if kicker is paid, all players search their battlefield, hand, library, and graveyard for identical cards and exile them. Any player who searches their library must shuffle their library.

  • Tasida

    Has anyone suggested the Grand Canyon as a land artifact?

  • Douglas Kirk

    It’s been a long time since I’ve played, but this is a fantastic idea!

    For a quick idea, what if you talked to a bunch of other atheist bloggers to put together a long list of popular (and unpopular?) commentors like Rieux, Sastra, Paul W. etc. as the common creatures (Creature-Commentor), prominent bloggers known mostly for blogging like yourself, Greta, Adam, Hemant etc. who could be uncommon legends (Legendary Creature-Blogger) and the exceptionally popular people who are more well known for their books like Dawkins, Hirsi Ali, Dennet etc. being the rare legendary creatures? You could even have old atheists as planeswalkers! Who wouldn’t want to remove a counter from Bertrand Russel to put an invisible teapot token in play?

    Part of me also went down a tangent where not only are gnu atheists represented, but accomodationists, creationists and theologians too. Maybe by unique 3-color combinations, kinda like the guilds of that one set I can’t remember right now. U/B/R for Gnus, B/U/W for accomodationists, U/W/G for theologians, W/G/R for creationists… maybe a G/R/B for even more outspoken atheists.

    But that’s totally overthinking…..