The four horsemen of the apocalypse

The White Horse
I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, “Come and see!” I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest. ( Revelation 6:1-2)

The Red Horse
When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come and see!” Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make men slay each other. To him was given a large sword. ( Revelation 6:3-4)

The Black Horse
When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come and see!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, “A quart of wheat for a day’s wages, and three quarts of barley for a day’s wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!” (Revelation 6:5-6)

The Pale Horse
When the Lamb opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come and see!” I looked and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine, and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth. (Revelation 6:7-8)

Conquest, War, Famine and Death
art by: Ilona Tsymbal

These are known as the four horsemen of the apocalypse. Described in the new testament of Christianity as those that will bring the apocalypse and the last judgment upon the world and its people.
They are very well used as well in pop culture such as music, movies and video games. Some of these take more freedom in their description and purpose but the main idea remain the same.

War and Death are the most popular among these and have kept their name and function in all or most iteration. Conquest and Famine however have been going under many different names.
The rider of the white horse Conquest is more often known as Pestilence. (sometimes even Christ or Antichrist)
The rider of the black horse Famine or at rare occasions Corruption.

Now it is up to you to send the four horsemen (or one, two or three) to bring the apocalypse.

* The horsemen can be from any religion or culture that would be reasonable. They don't have to be of the christian variation.
(Eg. If you want to make four samurai then you can do that. Or a samurai, a ninja, a geisha and/or a monk.)
* They can be of any creature type that could be represented as horseman. Angels, demons, spirits, custom etc. Or a combination of different creature types.
* Planeswalkers are allowed as riders.

The four riders and their names are:
- The rider of the white horse, Conquest or Pestilence
- The rider of the red horse, War
- The rider of the black horse, Famine.
- The rider of the pale horse, Death.
* Make it feel like the horsemen of the apocalypse.

* 4 entries at maximum.
* Old cards are allowed
* Even though not recommended, you are allowed to submit multiple cards of the same horseman.
* Follow the rules of the forum
* Credit the artist or provide a source

Evaluation and prizes
The cards will be judged based on presentation, creativity, flavor, balance, "apocalypsiness", grammar.
To receive the first place as "Bringer or the apocalypse" 4 cards are required where all four horsemen are presented. They will be judged based on how they play together and their combined flavor and presentation.
If no bringer of the apocalypse can be declared then the first place will be based on 1 card.

HM: 1 favorite of my choice
3rd place: 2 favorites of your choice
2nd place: 3 favorites of your choice
1st place or bringer of the apocalypse: 5 favorites of your choice and a follow

This contest ends Friday the 4th of May
(The deadline will be postponed if the number of entries are below 10.)

Good luck Smiths and happy apocalypse!


  • edited April 2018
    Today, we are canceling the apocalypse!

    Uses cancel on the horsemen..


    All joking aside, I will need revisit this once I go to sleep and have time to think. I am a fan of the Darksiders series, which in that they are described as nephilim , despite that being a very different thing in magic the gathering terms. They are the fusion of angel and demon, and are a being in between as they are there to uphold balance. Ultimately with any myth there's going be alot of different takes.
  • edited April 2018
    Hoofbeats sound in the distance as the first set of entries arrive. I'm not quite sure Famine works as intended, though.

  • Noooo my color scheme idea...(it was an obvious one to do...still iimma do it lol)
  • @Lujikul madybe the cmc on the dimir should be 2
  • @DoctorFro Thanks for the recommendation!
  • NP I really like the 2 theme and then I was thrown off lol...I just realized your art photo is the photo I used for Kirch the Exiled Owl
  • edited April 2018
    I have my starting point, as I might tinker with them a bit before it's over. I was torn if I should make an ability that punishes all players or just opponents as screwing everyone almost felt more in line with the lore.

    Edit, first draft

    image image
    image image

    I decided to go with 4 colors inspired by commander 2016, every combination that includes black. (which non-black was the group hug colors, so fitting they're not part of this heh.) I gave them all horsemanship because it fit even though it's kinda lame in it's own right heh. I mean who plays horsemanship right? Horsemanship (This creature can't be blocked except by creatures with horsemanship.)

    I made sure I found a picture using same artist with all 4 horsemen, so they'd have a consistent look. I just zoomed in on the part I wanted to use for each one as there's one picture containing them all.
  • what does horsemanship
  • edited April 2018
    Horsemanship (This creature can't be blocked except by creatures with horsemanship.) Was a portal mechanic. It's really lame since it has some flavor fails Like Rolling Earthquake, deals damage to everythnig that does have Horsemanship...somehow sitting on a horse is safer than flying above the ground itself from an earthquake. You'd think atleast creatures with flying would be fast enough to block them or avoid that effect. I occasionally run into commander players using it and just it might as well just say on unblockable on the creature since no one else is running it.
  • edited April 2018
    Ok I went back to the drawing board.... Certain things I had to change because I knew it would bother me if they were real cards and two things were true about them. One I couldn't leave the Horsemanship , they'd basically be unblockable or force people play alot of silly cards to offset them existing. Two, if you were play one as a commander, you wouldn't be able to play all 4 in the same deck without throwing some other creature in charge of the deck.(I considered making a 5 color Lord of the Apocalypse card just for that.) Making them partners would be too much, but I needed a way get them in the 99. Rider was my answer.

    So here's the updated versions. They all have resist to whatever color they are not in place of horsemanship. (Not full blown protection as those are brutal, creatures should be potentially blockable.) Along with a few other tweaks.

    image image
    image image

  • edited April 2018
    I made some bonus cards for this contest, they aren't entries, but related to the theme. Plus it bumps the thread and keeps things going.


    I decided I wanted to complete the cycle a make 5th creature that is the one who supposed to stop them. The idea was they could be anyone, whether it's Radiant the Archangel, A Shivan Dragon or a Doomed traveler...whoever you decide to pick from your deck. You exile that creature, and this creature is then a legendary copy for the rest of the game, with all it's original perks like a reverse of Bestow. You can ultimately replace it with another one later. Definitely made with commander in mind.


    What will ultimately bring about the end war..

    And a Lord of the Apocalypse type character


    This inspired by the main villain of the first Darksiders game. He was the Destroyer reigning over the Earth.
  • edited April 2018
  • That's some nice art there Doctor fro. I like we've gotten some very different versions of the same ideas. Jonteman will have some tough decisions ahead of him when this is over.
  • Ik right! I found all this cool art then realized it was already used and then spent like 20 min finding art
  • I made a cycle of four new cards, all 4-5 drops with every color pair that includes black. All four are aggressive. White-Black is Conquest, a token creator. Blue-Black is Death, which essentially forces your opponent to choose a creature to die every turn. Black-Green is famine, which punishes everyone for using mana abilities and makes opponents feel a sense of desperation. War is pure aggression that outright destroys the weakest creatures.\

  • The end is Nigh! So better get some more entries in.
  • But what about the Four Other Riders, the Bikers of the Repocalypse?
  • @Gelectrode They got arrested due to public loitering.
  • This the end....of this contest!
  • I will keep this contest open for 24 more hours.
  • ...and... it’s over!
  • Judgment Day is upon us...

  • So... who won? .-.
  • Here are the results

    Sorry for submitting them so late. I have had problems getting to sit down and getting things done as of lately.

    Honorable mentions
    @HeWhoHasCake - It of Conquest

    @LittleDemon - The Horseman Of War

    3rd place:
    @Lujikul - Being of Famine

    2nd place:
    @DoctorFro - The Horseman of Death

    1st place, Bringer of the apocalypse
    image image image image

    Winners, please tell me which cards you want favored.
  • @Jonteman93 just favor any three of my cards that you like
  • Congrats to ALL the winners and mentionables!!
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