This New Spinoff Re-Imagines 'Magic: The Gathering' as a Board Game


Magic: The Gathering's most recent expansion, Ixalan, is complicated. It features factions of merfolk, vampires, pirates, and dinosaurs vying for control of an island in a plot of treasure hunting, vampiric colonialism, and spell slinging from plane-traveling wizards. As I said, it's complicated, and now developers Wizards of the Coast have created a completely new type of game to add into the mix: Explorers of Ixalan, which puts the complex, card-based mechanics of Magic into conversation with tile-based board game gameplay. Explorers is due out November 24, 2017 for $64.99.

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A little surprised the article doesn’t mention Arena of the Planeswalkers at all, which attempted to do a similar thing a few years back (though not with actual Magic decks). It wasn’t well received… it was too simple for the MTG and hobbyist board game crowds, but too intimidating for the mass-market board game crowd. The base set didn’t have any deck building options in it at all and like… how can you brand a game MTG and not have any deck building? Expansions did come to help remedy that issue eventually, but they were too late to save it. The only people AotP was a big hit with were those that like really inexpensive miniatures, especially after all the sets went on clearance.