Wowee, is it ever an exciting time to be a Magic player!
Wizards has been dropping all sorts of crazy bombshells over the past few days, with lots of exciting news for us to parse through. As an avid EDH player, there is lots here to get excited about!
Let’s take a look!
What a time it is to be a multiplayer Magic player.
2016 was an excellent year for EDH and multiplayer Magic, as we were given a lot of fun, shiny toys to play with. We started the year with Oath of the Gatewatch, which was the second Battle for Zendikar set and introduced Eldrazi that broke multiple formats. Zendikar II block did have lots of fun multiplayer cards in it, such as Zendikar Resurgent, and was fairly good to all of my EDH decks. Next, we had the latest “sequel to this plane” nostalgia set, Shadows Over Innistrad and its expansion Eldrich Moon, which had even more big bad Eldrazi, tons of flavorful cards, and great utility cards. Over the summer, we were treated to Conspiracy: Take the Crown, which was absolutely one of my favorite Limited sets to draft of all time, and added a lot of awesome generals to EDH like Queen Marchesa. From there, we had Kaladesh, a bright and hopeful new set, just chock-full of fantastic new multiplayer cards like the amazing Panharmonicon. The Commander 2016 set of pre-constructed decks came out, which had 50+ excellent new cards and finally(!) four-color generals in them.
Then this year, we’ve been getting some great Magic sets as well. Aether Revolt had lots of great multiplayer cards in it, like Metallic Mimic, one of the best tribal enablers ever. This was followed by reprint set Modern Masters 2017, which had lots of great reprints in it. Finally, Wizards released the Egypt-themed set Amonkhet, which again, had a ton of great multiplayer cards, like new general Hapatra, Vizier of Poison and Dusk // Dawn.
Basically, 2016 was an awesome year for EDH, and multiplayer Magic in general, and it looks like 2017 is going to be the same, especially with all the new shiny things Wizards has announced! Wizards has been dropping a ton of exciting MTG news on us over the past while, and it is an amazing time to be playing the game, really.
Let’s take a look!
What a crazy batch of news this is (and as a longtime player and collector, I really fear for the health of my wallet over the next year).
Duel Deck: Merfolk vs. Goblins is cool, and a welcome addition to the other Duel Decks. I’ve been collecting these off and on over the years to play in casual Planechase games, so adding more decks is always a good thing. (My one complaint is still the same: why do we not have a second Duel Deck Anthology yet?)
The major thing I’m wondering here is just how Wizards will end up differentiating the Goblin deck from the one in Elves vs. Goblins, the very first Duel Deck. Regardless, should be a fun product.
(My major hope here is that Wizards somehow includes foil checklist cards with this; that, I would find hilarious and cool.)
The big Fall set, Ixalan, just from the “Pirate Vraska vs. dinosaurs” tagline, already sounds awesome. First we get an Egypt set, then pirates vs. dinosaurs in the same year, what more could we ask for?
I have no idea yet what Explorers of Ixalan is (other than the fact that it’s a multiplayer set). Since it’s geared for multiplayer, though, I’ll be paying attention to it; you never know when an unexpected gem like Planechase will come along.
Though I’ve skipped most of the Masters sets (I don’t need more reprints), I may have to draft a bunch of Masters 25 when it comes out. I love nostalgia sets like Time Spiral, and that is exactly what this set sounds like it will be (cards from 25 years of Magic history). Should be an amazing draft format, if they’ve made it right.
(Part of me really wonders if we’ll end up getting another set of “timeshifted cards” as part of this set. Those were one of my favorite things about Time Spiral.)
The Dominaria set is going to be fantastic. As a longtime player of the game, I am more excited to see what they do with a return to the game’s base world than pretty much any of the other “Return to X plane” sets that they’ve done so far.
That brings us to the best news of the day, however…
WE GET A THIRD UN- SET!!!
This, to me, was the best MTG news of the entire year, if not the entire decade. Though I’m pretty sure they never sold well back in the day, I had a lot of fun drafting and playing the original Un- sets (Unglued and Unhinged), and to this day, the Unhinged prerelease remains one of the best experiences I’ve ever had playing Magic, it was such ridiculous fun.
Back in 2013, I made a wishlist of things I wanted to see in MTG. This is what I said about number five on the list:
5. A third Un- set: Though they were only legal at the kitchen table, Unglued and Unhinged are some of my favorite cards. They were wacky, zany and fun (and some are even good in Cube, like Blast from the Past and Who // What // Where // When // Why). The Unhinged prerelease was the most fun prerelease I’ve ever been to, where hilarious things were happening at every turn. I made top 4 on the back of multiple creatures with ‘protection from wordy,’ I witnessed multiple people playing subgames under the table, and my favorite prerelease story ever comes from that prerelease.
The story: One guy had played a Booster Tutor and bought himself a pack of Torment to look through. The next card he cast was Ass Whuppin’… which he copied with the Radiate he’d grabbed from the pack of Torment! Suddenly, rather than reading “Destroy target silver-bordered permanent in any game you can see from your seat,” Ass Whuppin’ now read, “Destroy all silver-bordered permanents in any game you can see from your seat.” He was in the middle of the room, so he could see an awful lot of cards. Chaos and destruction ensued.
My girlfriend’s favorite card, My First Tome, is from Unhinged, so it should be no surprise that she’s rooting for a third Un- set too.
Maro’s remaining two psychographic profiles, Vorthos and Spike, have yet to see print in a silver-bordered set. Timmy, Power Gamer and Johnny, Combo Player have already been printed, now they need to complete the set!
Ridiculousness like the game above can only be found with Un- sets. Maro has hinted for years that he’s had the third Un- set ready to go for a while now; my wish is that they’d finally print it. Call it Unzipped, or Undone, or whatever, but give me more silver-bordered cards!
Finally, a third Un- set. My wallet is not ready for all the drafts I plan to do!
How does this affect my plans to build an Unglued/Unhinged/Conspiracy Cube? Well, I’ll be honest. I’ve been slowly gathering the cards to build this Cube over the past few months, but now I really want to wait and add Unstable cards as well.
What we know: Maro has confirmed that Squirrels are back, and that the vanilla mythic rare creature he’s been trying toget printed are in the set. And everyone assumes we’ll get more full-art lands.
One thing’s for sure, the third Un- set is going to be awesome!
…But wait, that’s not all! More and more new Hour of Devastation cards have been spoiled, like these gems:
As a lover of both modal spells and hard to block creatures, I admit that I do love both of these cards. Afflict is a fantastic keyword, and I look forward to seeing what manner of destructive creatures it ends up on!
I definitely like the direction the game is taking. And I am super hyped for what’s to come, including Commander 2017 this summer and Iconic Masters!
2016 was a great year for EDH and multiplayer Magic, and it looks like Wizards isn’t even close to finished yet! Pirates vs dinosaurs, Un- set 3, and more, what a year is ahead of us!