Two months after it was first teased, we finally get to see the new MTG card type that’s being added to the game in MTG March of the Machine. Invasion of Zendikar is the first Battle card spoiled, giving us some crucial information about how Battles will work.
The Green MTG Battle card Invasion of Zendikar has an effect like a ramp instant or sorcery, but what happens next is very unusual. You choose a player to ‘protect’ the Battle and then you and other players can attack it, as though it were an enemy planeswalker. Once the card is defeated, you can then flip it, and cast the backside, revealing your reward. In this instance, that’s Awakened Skyclave, a 4/4 Elemental Land with Vigilance and Haste.
Battles were first revealed during Phyrexia: All Will Be One’s spoiler season in February, when the card Atraxa, Grand Unifier had the word Battle mysteriously printed on it, indicating a new card type. Notably, this is the first truly new card type (as opposed to a subtype) that Magic has seen since Lorwyn brought MTG Planeswalkers to the game all the way back in 2007.
One thing worth noting is that Invasion of Zendikar has a subtype: Siege. This suggests that there’ll be different types of Battle cards, some of which might work differently. You might have to protect the Battle on a different card for instance.
March of the Machine spoilers are about to start flying in thick and fast. Catch up with what we know about the set in our March of the Machine release date guide, and don’t miss the MTG release schedule to find out what’s coming up next.