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Your first look at the Dungeons & Dragons Magic: The Gathering crossover set

Global release is set for July

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artwork of a five-headed dragon with fire around it Image: Wizards of the Coast
Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

Wizards of the Coast revealed the first few cards for Magic: The Gathering Adventures in the Forgotten Realms, the crossover set that brings the Dungeons & Dragons universe into the collectible card game for the very first time. The set comes out in July, with cards arriving first in digital formats like Magic: The Gathering Arena on July 8.

Announced in September, Adventures in the Forgotten Realms is among the most ambitious card sets ever announced for Magic. It will feature tons of different products, including both the new set boosters and collector boosters. There will be themed boosters, including one for each color, plus a sixth type of themed booster that’s not being discussed yet. There are also four new Commander decks on the way: Aura of Courage, Dungeons of Death, Draconic Rage, and Planar Portal.

Wizards showed off a number of preview cards during a livestream on Thursday. Lands in this set look distinctly different than any other previous sets, and include human figures — as if the adventuring party were visiting those locations together for the first time. They also includes nods to classic adventures like Storm Kings Thunder and Out of the Abyss.

Five of the available lands from Adventures in the Forgotten Realms. The Island reads “Alarmed by the news you brought, the storm giant king of the Maelstrom has called his kin to council.” Image: Wizards of the Coast

Fans expected plenty of tongue-in-cheek goofs, and this first set of previews definitely delivered. The first artifact revealed was Portable Hole, an iconic magic item that allows players to drop an extradimensional pocket of space onto any flat surface. There’s also the ninth-level spell Power Word Kill, which causes instant death.

A halfling citizen named Prosperous Innkeeper is a 1/1 that creates treasure tokens upon entering the battlefield. Image: Wizards of the Coast

Chromatic dragon Tiamat also showed her heads, all five of them, as a 7/7 Legendary Creature. She’ll be perfect for fans of the Commander format, but will take some doing to get onto the table.

Tiamat is rather muted on the standard version of the card, while the more rare borderless variant shows her in all her colorful glory. Image: Wizards of the Coast

Tiamat requires two of any type of mana and WUBRG (one of each type of mana, including white, blue, black, red, and green) to cast, but allows you to bring five additional Dragon cards into your hand. Art for the standard Mythic card is being handled by Chris Rahn, while Tyler Jacobson (cover artist for the Player’s Handbook) was tapped for the borderless version.

Vorpal Sword will include a borderless version as well with alternate art. Image: Wizards of the Coast

The final reveal was Vorpal Sword, a black mana stunt Artifact that can one-shot any opponent at the table.

For continuity’s sake, the set will also feature alternate frames and art that evoke the same style as the modern 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons books themselves.

A beholder shown with a regular border, and with an alternate border evoking the tinted pages of modern 5th edition D&D books. Image: Wizards of the Coast

Previews begin June 29, with a digital release (including both Magic: The Gathering Arena and Magic Online) set for July 8. Prerelease week kicks off on July 16, and will include both SpellTable and in-store play. The worldwide release comes on July 23.