Wizards of the Coast has experienced a game design renaissance in their recent years of making their flagship product Magic: The Gathering. More social media engagement on Maro’s (Mark Rosewater) part plus new blood on the design team and the onset of MTG: Arena heralded a new era in the game’s culture. Add to that a newfound sense of confidence after the game’s 25th anniversary in 2018. The player base has expanded over generations now.
You can feel this difference in recent sets over the past few years. New planeswalkers, a more dynamic story, new mechanics with every set, and a faster release schedule. It feels like a new game, ready to take bigger chances and be more liberal in giving the fans what they want. Every prerelease feels like a new adventure. And collectors all have prime cards to horde from each of these sets as well.
Magic The Gathering Aether Revolt Bundle Box – 10 booster packs
Aether Revolt was the second, smaller set in the Kaladesh block. Lore-wise, Pia Nalaar (Chandra’s mum) led a revolt of tinkerers and aether-pirates against the Consulate of Ghirapur, with an assist from the Gatewatch (the alliance of planeswalkers sworn to defend the multiverse).
Game-wise, this set saw the continuation of the popular and long-anticipated vehicles card type. The set also continued the block’s focus on artifacts, and Kaladesh’s unique and whimsical artwork. Don’t forget when you’re cracking booster packs, they also had Kaladesh Inventions, premium foil cards tossed in for bonus value. Your odds of opening one increase with every Bundle Box.
Magic Hour Of Devastation Booster Box + Bundle + Both Planeswalker Decks! MTG Variety Pack
Hour of Devastation was a set in Amonkhet block, another recent block with its own unique identity. Wizards of the Coast had long speculated on a set inspired by ancient Egyptian lore, with the suggestion that long-time nefarious planeswalker Nicol Bolas had a lineage tied with ancient Egyptian gods. Not the first thing you’d think of with Bolas, but in retrospect it makes perfect sense.
This set saw the introduction of the popular desert land types, cycling mechanics which continue to thrill EDH format players, and the ‘eternalize’ ability which allows a creature card to come back from the graveyard, only more like a wrathful spirit after being entombed. Keep an eye out for premium foil bonus cards called “invocations” in the boosters. This bundle includes both planeswalker decks for out-of-the-box introductory play.
Magic the Gathering (MTG): Rivals of Ixalan Bundle (Fat Pack)
There’s no beating a fat pack for raw pack-cracking value. Rivals of Ixalan was the follow-up set in Ixalan block, which introduced one of the most free-wheeling planes in MTG lore: A jungle plane in which pirates, merfolk, vampires, and dinosaur-riding warriors vied for discovery of the hidden treasures of Orazca. It was a radically different block that showed off how much MTG game design had changed over the years.
The set has many chase cards that continue to hold value on today’s playmats, including the allied color checklands and the legendary transforming enchantments, which flip over into mythical treasure-map lands. Opening this set feels like an adventure every time, which is probably exactly what they had in mind.
For a long time, Wizards of the Coast had speculated on visiting an Egypt-themed plane in the game. Fans expected it, but the revelation that ancient planeswalker Nicol Bolas would be the leader of this land blew everyone away. The Gatewatch (the alliance of planeswalkers sworn to protect the multiverse) had to defeat Bolas and free the land from his tyranny.
Card-wise, Amonkhet introduced a pantheon of ancient gods, as well as bringing back the curse mechanic and introducing the desert land archetype. There were also the artifact monument series tied to each primary god, and the cycling dual lands which have continued to enjoy thriving popularity. It’s easy to overlook how many cool toys there were in this set until you start to crack boosters. Amonkhet was a solid, well-polished block.
Magic: the Gathering: Dragons of Tarkir Fat Pack (Factory Sealed Includes 9 Booster Packs & More)
What else need you say about this set but – “It was part of Khans block?” It was the third set in the Khans of Tarkir block, the block that made the biggest splash of any MTG set in years and is still revered today. You could open this set for years and it’s like mining gold. Khans was a new world of Magic, one they will doubtless revisit someday. It returned the “multi-color matters” theme of blocks like Alara, while introducing a huge world of Tarkir, mapped by colored clans in an epic battle.
This set brought the dawn of the dragons that still dominate multiple formats to this day, after fans had long clamored for a dragon-themed set. It also had a host of innovative card mechanics, including bolster, dash, rebound, and exploit, that each enabled clever strategies. And of course, the set continued unleashing the mighty dragon lords, upgraded from the Fate Reforged set in similar clan colors.
MTG Magic the Gathering KLD Kaladesh Deck Builder’s Toolkit
Kaladesh was another block that defied previous MTG design conventions. Where for years Wizards of the Coast had been conservative in making sure each card they released stayed consistent with an art standard, Kaladesh was the first time in awhile they’d let a set feel like its art belonged just to that set. The intricate, curvy designs and spiraling flourishes went with an Indo-Chinese theme, feeling exotic and spicy.
Kaladesh also gave the fans some much-clamored-for attention to artifacts. Affinity player from the old-school and Johnny combo players from the EDH tables both got a whole set where artifacts mattered, with a new shot in the arm for widening the viable color scope for artifact players. A Deck Builder’s Toolkit is an excellent budget option for introductory MTG players, with a lot of bang for the buck and a handsome box to house your collection.