NOTE: This article originally appeared on The Technovore.
Chances are, no matter who you are, you’re familiar with Magic: The Gathering. Whether it’s through somebody playing the game in school or a family member who’s into it, you probably know that it’s a fiendishly deep game to play…or a big waste of money because of the need to keep buying new booster packs with new sets coming at a fairly regular pace. The latest of course, being Dominaria United.
Dominaria United is the 93rd expansion to Wizard of the Coast’s long running CCG (collectible card game) but more importantly, it heralds Magic: The Gathering’s 30th anniversary when it launches September 9. To that end, the set is more special than most.
For local players, those who preorder the set can get a limited edition Token collectable. There’s a catch though, you’re going to need to spend at least SG$140.
Awesomely, the Token is part of a set. It’s perfectly fine on its own, but when you get the full series (there’s three of them), the cards will form a battlefield mural.
The first Token was given to all who attended the event and definitely was something special.
The full mural is under wraps but if the other two Tokens are as cool looking as the one we got, it’ll be a treat indeed! Of course, it’ll also be a valuable treat for collectors too considering it’s not so easy to attain. If you’re looking for more details, the Magic: The Gathering Facebook page has it all.
To celebrate the upcoming launch of the latest set, Wizards of the Coast (the people behind Magic: The Gathering) invited us to a media preview session of Dominaria United so that we can get some hands on with the upcoming set.
Set in the cozy setting of Orchard Central’s Walking on Sunshine cafe, the assembled media were treated to a working lunch before a quick briefing by Wizards of the Coast rep Kenneth regarding what to expect with Dominaria United.
The 281 card set will come in multiple flavors, including Draft Boosters, Set Boosters, Collector Boosters, Commander decks and bundles and of course, Jumpstart booster packs. Great for those who’ve lapsed or need a quick fix.
For the hardcore, they’ll want to turn to the Collector Boosters.
Randomly inserted into these packs are cards from the old school Legends set. Aptly named Lost Legends due to how they were recovered, the cards are awaiting the lucky ones who manage to find them in random Collector’s packs.
Collectors will also want to get the new Stained Glass Full Art Lands, Legendaries, Planeswalkers and Phyrexian cards, which will be available in both foil and non-foil versions found in the Set, Draft and Collector Booster packs.
One thing that sets apart Magic: The Gathering from most other collectible card games (like Pokemon or Yu-Gi-Oh!) is that there’s lore behind it all. Most themed set (like Innistrad, Urza’s Legacy or Dominaria United) have their own lore and plot.
Some, like the Brothers Saga, unfold across numerous sets or blocks. Others are simpler, with their own self-contained plot in that set.
Dominaria United seems to be of the former, with hints that it might have some far reaching consequences in the Magic: The Gathering universe, at least with regards to lore.
Of course, while plot might be the main draw point for some Magic: The Gathering players, the majority of them are just in it for the chance to duel like-minded individuals and see who can come up with the better deck.
That’s what happened during the event.
Seeing as how you need cards to play, the folks from Wizards of the Coast were also kind enough to give us some freebies! A prerelease Dominaria United deck, a Collector Booster pack and 5 regular boosters with card sleeves to boot!
More than enough cards for a quick pickup session of dueling.
While I’ve not played a physical game of Magic: The Gathering since the late 90s (when I was in secondary school), it all came crashing back and soon I was summoning and tapping like a pro.
Not everybody was familiar with the game but the Wizards of the Coast crew foresaw that, and had some local Magic: The Gathering pros on hand to guide the newbie Planeswalkers.
Soon enough, the Walking on Sunshine cafe was filled with joyous outcries of turnabout victories and lamentations of unexpected losses…in other words, pretty much what you’d expect from a Magic: The Gathering event.
While I personally wasn’t able to stay long (as I had something else to attend to), I did leave the venue with a beautiful sight; of duelists intensively going over their cards, formulating a killer deck to take on all comers.
After all, that’s what the spirit of Magic: The Gathering is about…and Dominaria United will continue on providing new and innovating ways to do so.