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Transformers cards in MTG Brothers’ War could be a one-off

MTG product designer says putting crossover cards in Standard sets (as happened with Transformers) is not a part of Wizards' wider philosophy

MTG Brothers War Transformers cards - artwork of a transformer standing on a broken machine, giving a thumbs up

At a press event, MTG product designer Max McCall said putting crossover cards in Standard sets is not part of Wizard of the Coast’s “overarching philosophy”.

Early last month, Wizards announced Magic: The Gathering’s crossover with the Transformers franchise. A first for these numerous ‘Universes Beyond’ collabs with other brands, the company explained the Transformers cards would be found within MTG The Brothers’ War’s set booster packs, alongside regular Magic-universe cards.

In a recent press event on the upcoming Brothers’ War set, Wizards staff were asked if this was a conscious effort to include more crossover products in Standard sets. The answer, from principal product designer Max McCall, is rather non-committal, but suggests the move is not an explicit part of the company’s wider strategy.

“Broadly, we saw this as an opportunity,” he says. “This set is full of giant robots, fighting each other, that are awesome; also the Transformers are giant robots, that fight each other, that are awesome. And we wanted to bring those together.”


“There’s somewhat less of an overarching philosophy there, and more of: small children being excited about cool giant robots,” he says.

MTG The Brothers War - a robot bearing down on a human soldier.

McCall then restated that while they’re found in packs among Standard Brothers’ War cards, the Transformers cards themselves aren’t Standard legal, and are playable only in Commander and eternal formats.

What, if anything, this statement means for future MTG crossover products we daren’t speculate. Even if it wasn’t part of Wizards wider strategy, we certainly still wouldn’t be surprised if future Standard sets have, say Iron Man or Dr Who MTG cards in them, simply because it seems both Wizards higher ups and parent company Hasbro see Universes Beyond as a big money-making opportunity.

Last month, at Hasbro’s Investor Day presentation, WotC president Cynthia Williams said she aims to reach “millions of new fans” through collaborations with other companies. In particular, she has her eye on the MTG Lord of the Rings product, which is anticipated to sell better than regular MTG sets.

MTG The Brothers War artwork of optimus prime in truck form, with the Shattered Glass card style

Did you know that Wizards of the Coast wanted to revisit The Brothers’ War for years? Or that the set has no Vehicles, because MTG Vehicles are a modern card type and the Brothers’ War wants to be old-fasioned? Check out our guide to MTG The Brothers’ War for all the latest news and top spoilers.