How does the Toxic mechanic work in MTG?

These creatures are not safe for consumption.

The Toxic mechanic may feel familiar to veteran MTG players, due to the similar Infect mechanic from past sets. Toxic is a keyword found all over the Phyrexia: All Will Be One set, introducing a new win condition to the Standard format. By overwhelming opponents with Toxic creatures, you can easily secure a win in the early to mid-game. Here's an explanation of the Toxic mechanic in MTG.

How does Toxic work in MTG?

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Creatures with the Toxic keyword deal damage normally to other creatures, but when they deal combat damage to a player, that player gets one or more poison counters. To determine how many poison counters that player gets, check the number next to the Toxic keyword. The Pestilent Syphoner card above has both Flying and Toxic 1, making it a great card for inflicting poison counters, especially if the defending player has no creatures with Flying.

If a player has 10 poison counters, they automatically lose the game. Several players create decks that revolve entirely around the Toxic mechanic, and these decks are typically green, black, or both. Cards like Necrogen Rotpriest empower creatures with the Toxic keyword, giving a player one additional poison counter when they are struck with a Toxic creature.

Related: Is there an MTG Arena Code for Phyrexia: All Will Be One?

If you're looking to play an especially brutal Toxic deck, try adding cards with the Proliferate keyword. This enables you to add an additional counter to any source that already has a counter of that type. For example, if a player has nine poison counters and you play a card like Whisper of the Dross, you can proliferate their poison counters and bring it up to 10. This causes that player to lose the game, without you even having to inflict combat damage.

For more Magic: The Gathering guides, come check out MTG Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty Draft Guide here on Pro Game Guides.

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About the Author

Britlee has been playing games for fifteen years. She primarily covers League of Legends, TFT, MTG Arena, and Genshin Impact. You can typically find her caring for her mantis Khosekh or daydreaming about Leon S. Kennedy.
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How does the Toxic mechanic work in MTG?

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