Sylvan Stories: Goblins

From the red splattered plains of Tarkir to the grand bustling ports of Rishada, a horde has ravaged the planes. A finely tuned rickety machine, squabbling about in the mud of its undisputed prowess. Held at the helm by grand chieftains and hero’s of battle, the ever impending goblin agenda lies in wait, gathering forces, in lieu of opportunities to strike.

Welcome to Sylvan Stories, a new series where we explore the lore and flavors of various popular decks throughout Magic’s history. Today we are going to be checking out the Legacy and Modern Goblin Tribal deck.

Mountainous ranges are the most feared of all trade routes for caravan drivers. For there lay in wait a mysterious danger, never seen, but heard by many a traveler. Devilish laughter echoes through cliffs at night, bouncing off canyon walls in an array of fiendish delight, as unknown figures dance upon fire, singing ancient tunes in imposing choirs. They are said to strike unexpectedly, only warning with echoing chuckles and squeaks as they encroach, but by then it is almost always to late to flee like a roach.

Welcome all – to the Goblin Horde

They attack swiftly and surely, with a passion so grand, a resolve so true that nothing will stop their cause once chosen. Fighting in perfect disharmony, the oncoming rally of the tribe continues to fumble onward, reaching towards a quick victory. Hardly calculated fireballs zoom by, as war marshals grizzle commands to underlings. Tiny footsteps patter on the ground in perfect disunited rhythm, as ringing pangs of fire near unsuspecting victims.

Then without warning a howl rings in the distance, what sounds like a shriek of pain. But anyone with some experience would know better, it’s no cry of suffering, but a mere call to brethren that the fight is about to begin. Suddenly a sea of green and brown moves its mass across the canyons and cliffs, spreading like a plume of smoke all around. More and more continue forward, until everything is enveloped in revelrous laughter. A single foot soldier shows his glaring teeth, worn down and yellowed by decades of terrible hygiene. Then with the lift of a makeshift staff, the entire horde charges forward. Dispersing all around, working in intricately disharmonious synergy.

More and more pile in from the distance, scurrying about. The unending horde marches on into the wakes of their targets. Dabbling in powerful magics, the spell casters blast out onslaught after onslaught of fire and barrage. Crudely built contraptions spew arrows among other oddities at alarming rates, as the most experienced tribe-lings summon support in a flurry of energy, directly onto the battle scene.

The continued barrage begins to wear away at an opponents resolve, they begin having trouble tapping into resources. How much longer can they continue on? Their stamina drains, their tactics run low. And eventually, if no answer presents itself, they are entirly consumed by the ever growing sea of fire and grimy green faces adorned by dulled pointy teeth.


The Goblin’s enjoy a good hearty treasure, something to really sink their teeth into. Once a worthy adversary presents itself, they will stop at nothing to accomplish their goals. Going as far as to carelessly launch themselves directly into battle, with explosives strapped on their bare backs.

Long time hardened warriors gain positions as leaders, and command entire legions into battle. While ever wise and vigilant chiefs sit atop and moderate the spectacle. Luxurious gold, carved jewelry, and alcohol from the finest of brewers is what the goblins are after, but what they enjoy more is the heat of the battle. The excitement of sudden thinking consumes each and every one of them. They feed off of living in the moment, holding to their ideals to the highest extent.

While the goblins are highly refined savage warriors, their time off the battlefield is ever more ravish. They are marketers, tricksters, business masters and scoundrels. Feeding off of whatever lucrative and exciting opportunities await in the depths of society. Goblins trick and try, achieving great heights, all the while growing the strength of their tribe. Great chieftains lead their clans into the ranks of the rich, jesting and clawing their way to the top of the world.

When the goblins are not fighting they enjoy time to reflect on the finer aspects of life. Wild parties are held in their names, and many a traveler have been tricked by their sly tongue.

Having left their mark on almost every plane in the multiverse, wherever there be treasures to steal and opponents to bash, you can be sure that there will be those taking advantage of the opportunity. So the next time you’re walking out in the mountains, or the blood stained plains of Tarkir, or the grand ports of Rishada, and you hear a subtly faint laughter in the background, you can be sure their’s a little green grimy creature hiding in the shadows, just beyond sight. Waiting, no perhaps scheming, for the perfect opportunity to indulge.

Thanks for reading! Sylvan Stories is a new concept we are trying out. If you have any questions, comments of concerns feel free to leave them in the section below.

And as always, happy gaming!






Sylvan Studies Team
- A swords a day keeps the goyfs away.

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