"Race" designates the unique genetic makeup of a sapient (and usually humanoid) creature group. Besides race, most Magic cards with humanoid creatures may also have another creature type: the creature class represents their job, career or calling in life. This is known as the race/class model.
Note that the Magic approach is somewhat different from the scientific one. In biology, the basic unit of biological classification and taxonomic rank is "species", which is defined as a group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring. Race in that aspect is defined as a genetically distinct population of individuals within the same species.
- Ape, Azra, Centaur (part Horse), Cyclops, Dauthi, Dryad, Dwarf, Elf, Faerie, Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Gorgon, Hag, Halfling, Human, Kithkin, Kobold, Kor, Merfolk (Fish-folk), Metathran, Minotaur (part bull or Goat or Sheep), Moonfolk (part Rabbit), Naga (part Snake), Noggle (part ass), Ogre, Orc, Ouphe, Satyr (part Goat), Siren, Slith, Soltari, Surrakar (reptillian), Thalakos, Troll, Vedalken, Viashino (Lizard-Dragon-folk), Werewolf, Yeti.
Humanoid races without their own subtype
- Ainok (Dogfolk), Amphin (Salamanderfolk), Aven (Birdfolk), Khenra (Jackalfolk), Kitsune (Foxfolk), Leonin (Catfolk), Loxodon (Elephantfolk), Nantuko/Kraul (Insectfolk), Nezumi (Ratfolk), Orochi (Snakefolk), Rakshasas (Catdemons), Raccoonfolk, Rhox (Rhinofolk), Wolfir (Wolffolk).
Humanoid races (in appearance only)
- Aetherborn, Angel, Archon, Avatar, Bringer, Demigod, Djinn, Efreet, God, Inkling, Lamia, Nymph, Reflection, Shade, Shapeshifter, Skeleton, Sliver (Magic 2014 version), Specter, Spirit, Thrull, Vampire, Wraith, Zombie.
Sapient non-humanoid races
These races only have a class in rare exceptions.
- Beeble, Carrier, Cephalid (part Octopus or Squid), Demon, Devil, Dragon, Drone, Eldrazi, Elemental, Eye, Gremlin, Harpy, Homarid (part lobster or Crab), Homunculus, Horror, Illusion, Imp, Incarnation, Kirin, Lammasu, Nephilim, Nightmare, Nightstalker, Phyrexian, Spawn, Sphinx (part Cat), Spirit, Thallid (Fungusfolk), Treefolk (part Plant), Zubera.
Non-humanoid races without their own subtype
- Antelope, Ape, Aurochs, Badger, Bat, Bear, Bird, Boar, Camel, Caribou, Cat, Crab, Crocodile, Dinosaur, Dog, Elephant, Elk, Ferret, Fish, Fox, Frog, Goat, Hippo, Horse, Hyena, Insect, Jackal, Jellyfish, Leech, Lizard, Mole, Mongoose, Monkey, Mouse, Nautilus, Octopus, Ox, Oyster, Otter, Pangolin, Rabbit, Rat, Rhino, Sable, Salamander, Scorpion, Shark, Sheep, Slug, Snake, Spider, Sponge, Squid, Squirrel, Starfish, Trilobite, Turtle, Whale, Wolf, Wolverine, Wombat, Worm.
- Atog, Basilisk, Beast, Brushwagg, Camarid, Cockatrice, Drake, Gargoyle, Griffin, Hellion, Hippogriff, Hydra, Kavu, Kraken, Leviathan, Lhurgoyf, Licid, Manticore, Mutant, Pegasus, Phelddagrif, Phoenix, Serpent, Slith, Sliver, Spike, Unicorn, Wurm.
Plants and fungi
Other biological creatures
- Assembly-Worker, Blinkmoth, Chimera, Construct, Dreadnought, Gnome, Golem, Juggernaut, Masticore, Myr, Pentavite, Pest, Prism, Sculpture, Servo, Scarecrow, Tetravite, Thopter, Triskelavite.
Some silver-border sets, like Unglued, Unhinged, and Unstable, use creature types which are not included in magic's comprehensive rules, but are part of 'silver-border' games. Because these creature types are not compiled into an authoritative list by Wizards of the Coast, the following table may be incomplete and which silver-border creature types are considered races and non-races is cuurently based on intuition rather than offical comment.
- The Biggest, Baddest, Nastiest, Scariest Creature You'll Ever See, Brainiac, Clamfolk (Part clam), type:"Elves", Gus, type:"Mummy", type:"Vampyre".
- Beaver, Chameleon, Cow, Deer, Donkey, type:"Kangaroo", type:"Lobster", type:"Penguin", type:"Raccoon".
Notes and references
- Mark Rosewater (November 25, 2020). "Can you give your rigorous definitions of the "types of creature subtypes", like class, race and others, please?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Doug Beyer (August 10, 2011). "Magic's Exclusive Creatures". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- In practice, any horned ruminant is a possibility: Zedruu the Greathearted is an antelope-based minotaur.
- Zombie is a weird race/class hybrid. Mark Rosewater (November 23, 2020). "Which one isn't a race among Dinosaur, Elf, Vampire, Zombie?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater (November 23, 2020). "I guess you’d say some creature types are neither?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
- Mark Rosewater (November 24, 2020). "What makes Dinosaur not a race? What is it? What else is in that category?". Blogatog. Tumblr.