July 23, 2019

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First Impressions of Throne of Eldraine

Hello all, today I’m going to be talking about my first impressions on the fall Magic set, Throne of Eldraine. There is a lot of information to take in about the new set without revealing any cards or mechanics from the new set. There is the amazing art in the set, a new type of card frame, and a new type of booster pack called the Collector Booster. Let’s delve right into my thoughts on some of these new revelations.

Art and Theme of the Set

They are quoted as saying that Throne of Eldraine will be a set with the theme of “Camelot meets Grimm's Fairy Tales”. Everyone has grown up hearing fairy tales and probably have some memory that brings you back to some of the stories told to you as a child. We have seen the likes of Shrek take on classic fairy tales with their own twist and it looks like Magic is trying to do the same. It looks like the stories will take a little bit of a darker side as seen by the following art.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t remember the Gingerbread Man quite like that. It’s like a cross between Stuffy Doll and a gingerbread cookie. I really hope my cookies don’t come out of the oven looking like that. The rest of the art in the set is half positive happy Camelot-like settings and half dark evil Forest. An amazing piece of art showcases the plane while displaying the classic planeswalker symbol we have come to recognize.

Promos and Card Frames

Magic has decided that players like alternate art cards, whether it is via promo cards, through Mythic Edition product or otherwise. I personally agree with this and am glad to see that they are adding more of this to Throne of Eldraine products. One of the new things they are adding is Showcase cards that have an alternate frame and art for the card. Here is an example:

First off, there appears to be an exciting new mechanic that will make the text box appear to be the pages of an open book. What could this new mechanic be? The two pieces of art appear to make me believe it is some sort of transformation of the card without having a double-faced card. It appears through spending a certain amount of mana you will be able to progress this character’s story and have something happen. Will this new ability affect the permanent, other permanents, the whole battlefield? Who knows the true answer to this, but I’m intrigued to find out what it’s all about. For Throne of Eldraine it appears that there will be a handful of showcase cards at all rarities. This is a collector’s dream and I’m loving the variety it gives players for which version they want to play with.

Collector Booster

If you like alternate art and promo cards, the fun doesn’t stop at Showcase Cards. They are adding a new type of Booster pack called the Collector Booster. Here are the two booster packs we will see in sets going forward.

These packs will contain the following:

- 1 rare/mythic rare with extended art
- 1 foil rare/mythic rare
- 9 foil commons/uncommons
- 3 special-frame cards (showcase or borderless planeswalkers)
- 1 ancillary card
- 1 foil token

What a great looking booster pack! This is jam packed with 15 cards of value and will be a blast to open. Above I’ve added an example of an extended art and a borderless planeswalker card. Extended Art cards will only be available in these Collector Boosters and they look beautiful. We have seen the borderless planeswalker cards in Mythic Edition product before, so it is nice to see them appear in both regular draft booster packs and collector booster packs as well. I like the addition of the ancillary card for those players who don’t want to buy every planeswalker deck, etc. to get some of the cards not appearing in the regular set. I have always wanted to see foil tokens and I couldn’t understand why they haven’t been in every set for ages, but glad to see their addition in the collector booster pack.

Thinking as a player first, I’m excited to have new types of products enter the game to mix things up. It will be interesting to see how much of an appetite there is for all these new promo cards. Will it get to the point where there are too many of them, or will players just want more and more? I hope you have enjoyed my first impressions of Throne of Eldraine. I’ll be back to talk more about the transition towards Throne of Eldraine this fall.