Magic: The Gathering Archenemy
|Released||June 18th, 2010|
|Size||Four 60-card decks, each coming with 20 oversized Scheme cards|
|Designers||Kenneth Nagle (lead), Kelly Digges, Dave Guskin, Mons Johnson|
|Developers||Tom LaPille (lead), Scott Larabee, Lee Sharpe, Andy Smith, Mike Turian|
Archenemy is a variant of Magic: The Gathering with an emphasis on one vs. many multiplayer games. The set utilizes new oversized Scheme cards. Four game packs were released on June 18th, 2010: Assemble the Doomsday Machine, Bring About the Undead Apocalypse, Scorch the World with Dragonfire, Trample Civilization Underfoot. The cards within each preconstructed deck have all been reprinted from various Magic sets, with the exception of one card per deck, that is a new card from Magic 2011. All of the cards are black bordered and tournament legal in their original formats.
Archenemy is a multiplayer format where one player is selected to be the "archenemy", and the rest of the players play against them. Players start normally at 20 life, but the archenemy starts at 40 life, plays first, and draws a card on their first turn. In addition to their normal library of Magic cards, the archenemy starts with a shuffled deck of at least 20 scheme cards where there are no more than 2 copies of any individual scheme card. Right before the beginning of the archenemy's first main phase, the archenemy draws the top card of the their scheme deck and resolves the card, puts it on the bottom of the scheme deck, and then proceeds with their turn normally. The archenemy's opponents share their turn steps (i.e. they occur at the same time) but do not share cards, mana pools or any other resource, similar to Two-Headed Giant bar the fact life is also not shared. The archenemy wins by defeating each of his opponents by the normal means, but his opponents all win if he is defeated.
There are currently 45 schemes, with 5 additional promotional schemes ("Perhaps You've Met My Cohort", "Plots That Span Centuries", "Your Inescapable Doom", "Imprison This Insolent Wretch" and "Drench the Soil in Their Blood") released, with the possibility of more being added in the future similarly to the manner in which Planechase has been supported. Some schemes are "Ongoing Schemes" and remain in play until a certain condition is met such as a creature entering a graveyard (e.g. "My Undead Horde Awakens"). Other schemes allow an archenemy to target an opponent (e.g. "Behold the Power of Destruction"), and some of those give the target opponent the option of being the sole player disadvantaged by that scheme or to have every opponent be targeted by a lesser disadvantage (e.g. "May Civilizations Collapse").