Magic: The Gathering plans to roll out new Planeswalker cards at a slower rate, with only one MTG Planeswalker per set for the foreseeable future. Designers Gavin Verhey and Mark Rosewater explained during the Barcelona MagicCon panel on July 28, that this will be the new normal. This is down to the desparking events of March of the Machine, which saw many Planeswalkers lose their world-hopping powers (and become legendary creatures, suddenly eligible as MTG commanders).
In terms of gameplay, Verhey explained, this will apparently allow Wizards of the Coast to create more innovative Planeswalkers. “It lets us put a huge focus on that Planeswalker. We put a lot of testing resources into them and just spend a lot of time making sure that they are awesome”.
You can judge for yourself whether the new high-effort Planeswalker cards are as good as advertised, because we’ve already seen one in the last batch of spoilers for MTG Wilds of Eldraine. These new cards included the Planeswalker Ashiok, Wicked Manipulator, a powerful card that lets you cheat out of paying life for costs.
There’s a strong theory that the next MTG set after Eldraine, Lost Caverns of Ixalan, will feature elephant archeologist Quintorius. If that’s the case, he would probably be the only Planeswalker in the set – which may well fit, since we know Huatli is de-sparked and appears as a legendary creature in this set.
This new development was explained during the preview stream at Barcelona MagicCon on July 28 (timestamp 51:09), but we were rolling in spoilers and scrambling to get our MTG release schedule in order, so didn’t spot it immediately. Did you catch the glut of spoilers last week, and were you able to keep up with the new Ixalan art, Doctor Who Commander cards, and Wilds of Eldraine reveals?