Magic: The Gathering fans, get ready to get a little bit of Dungeons and Dragons chocolate in your Magic: The Gathering peanut butter. In today’s official Zendikar Rising preview, Wizards of the Coast announced a new card set coming in Q3 2021 that will bring some D&D flavor to the planes of Magic.
While Dungeons and Dragons already had modules based on the worlds of Magic: The Gathering, there hasn’t been a way to play the other way around. But Wizards of the Coast, which owns both of the storied franchises, has now announced Adventures in the Forgotten Realms, a set of Magic cards that will feature characters and themes native to the Forgotten Realms of D&D fame.
More than just a cosmetic setting, Adventures in the Forgotten Realms promises to integrate Dungeons and Dragons-themed mechanics with Magic: The Gathering’s play style. Players will get an early glimpse into what that might look like with Zendikar Rising introducing a new “party” mechanic. Here’s how head designer Mark Rosewater explains it:
One idea we had was the concept of an adventure party. All of us had played Dungeons & Dragons where we had a motley crew of different characters roaming through an adventure. [...] What if we focused on the idea that a party is usually made up of a wide variety of different kinds of characters?
The idea of earning a bonus based on the type of card you have in your deck is not new to Magic. A card will grant you more attack power for however many Soldier- or Wizard-type cards you have on the battlefield. It’s not hard, then, to imagine a mechanic in which you get a bonus for each type of “party” member card you possess.
Brace yourselves for cards like Planeswalker Drizzt—who in my imagination would cost both White and Black mana—and a Gelatinous Cube creature card that is indestructible and immune to spells. We might even see reprints of old Magic cards that are already D&D-themed, like Bag of Holding and Fireball. I’m also interested to see if we’ll get D&D meta-themed cards like “Action Point” or “Roll for Initiative.”
Adventures in the Forgotten Realms won’t be released for another year, giving you plenty of time to get a real Dungeons and Dragons game going only for it to inevitably fall apart, as most of my games do. At least Magic games are quicker.