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Wizards accused of using AI art (again) in MTG ad

Magic: The Gathering fans claim to have spotted AI art in a now-missing Tweet from Wizards of the Coast promoting a new MTG Secret Lair.

MTG Ad AI art - Wizards of the Coast art of Lara Croft with a Twitter robot emoji pasted over her face

Magic: The Gathering publisher Wizards of the Coast has seen backlash for allegedly using AI art in a social media ad for MTG. The Twitter post from November 13 was promoting the newly-announced Tomb Raider Secret Lair, but the Tweet appears to have been deleted – after multiple fans accused its image of being artificially generated.

A new Tweet promoting the same MTG Secret Lair was shared around eight hours later. However, its comments section is still filled with accusations about AI.

The art on the Tomb Raider MTG cards doesn’t appear to be AI-generated – instead, it’s the background of the promotional image fans took issue with. The scene shows art from the Tomb Raider cards on a retro television and as posters on a wall behind it.

According to one fan on Reddit, this image has several tell-tale signs of computer interference. Inconsistent shapes and lighting, as well as missing or mismatching features on the television and table, are pointed to as evidence.

MTG ad AI art Tweet

This isn’t the first time Wizards has been accused of using AI art. In August, fans spotted AI art in Glory of the Giants, a newly-published DnD book.

Wizards of the Coast released a statement via D&DBeyond shortly after, claiming it was unaware of the use of AI. “We are revising our process and updating our artist guidelines to make clear that artists must refrain from using AI art generation as part of their art creation process”, the statement said.

Artificial intelligence has been an intense topic of conversation in the wider tabletop world, too. Pathfinder publisher Paizo condemned AI art back in March, and the creator of Gloomhaven told Wargamer that AI art “feels like theft”. More recently, Backerkit restricted AI art in the wake of Kickstarter’s new policy allowing the transparent use of AI art in crowdfunders.

Wizards of the Coast was contacted for comment on this story, but at this time Wargamer has not received a reply.

For more on artificial intelligence, here are the tabletop RPG publishers that think AI art is a Pandora’s box that’ll never be shut. And for more of the latest Magic: The Gathering news, here’s what’s coming next on the MTG release schedule.