Although many Magic: The Gathering players are currently busy preparing for this weekend’s pre-release events to celebrate the upcoming Journey into Nyx set of cards, it’s never too early to start looking forward to the next big release. It’s become a tradition for the collectible card game’s creators to drop hints about the annual summer Core Set at PAX East every year and Wizards of the Coast didn’t break that tradition in 2014.
As usual, Wizards revealed the tagline for the the core set and dropped a few hints about the theme of the cards. This year the planeswalker Garruk is the face of the set and ‘Hunt Bigger Game’ is the tagline. As an added bonus, players had a chance to see a few spoiler cards and keen-eyed video game fans may have been able to recognize some of the art featured on the upcoming cards…
Magic 2015 will tie-in to the video game world in the usual way when the 2015 version of Duels of the Planeswalkers hits mobile devices, PCs, and consoles this summer, but the core set also features work from a series of talented video game artists on fourteen of the new cards. Wizards contracted a great variety of talent ranging from indie artists like Edmund McMillen (Super Meat Boy) and Notch (Minecraft) to triple-A designers like Rob Pardo (World of Warcraft) and Stone Librande (Diablo 3).
The list of contracted artists is impressive from top to bottom and crossover fans from video games to MTG are likely to get a kick out of cracking open a booster and finding a card drawn by the Penny Arcade creators inside. More so than the complicated blocks of cards that are released through the rest of the year, the annual summer core sets are designed to drawn in new players. The two-decade old card game has seen a pretty consistent spike in popularity in the years since the first Duels of the Planeswalkers game was released and it makes sense that Wizards would try to continue tapping the video game scene for more potential customers.
We wouldn’t be surprised to see plenty of die-hard gaming fans picking up some 2015 boosters this summer in hopes of unearthing a card from one of their favorite artists. From easy to join Friday Night Magic events to Duels of the Planeswalkers and now this video game art crossover; Wizards has a consistent, strong marketing technique of drawing potential customers in with fun, cheap, and addicting promotions. It’s worked well for the game’s sales in the past and this seems like a formula for another big summer of sales for Magic.
Here’s a full list of the video game artists that will contribute work to the upcoming core set…
Isaiah Cartwright, lead game designer for Guild Wars 2
James Ernest, owner and lead designer for Cheapass Games, designer of Kill Doctor Lucky
George Fan, designer of Plants vs Zombies, whose “Genesis Hydra” card appears below
Brian Fargo, founder and CEO of InXile Entertainment, director of Bard’s Tale, Wasteland, executive producer of Fallout
Richard “Lord British” Garriot, creator of the Ultima series
Justin Gary, designer of Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer and Solforge
Mike “Gabe” Krahulik and Jerry “Tycho” Holkins, creators of Penny Arcade
Stone Librande, lead designer at Riot Games, designer of Diablo 3, creative director of SimCity
Edmund McMillen, indie designer of Super Meat Boy, featured in Indie Game: The Movie
Brad Muir, game designer at Double Fine Productions leading Massive Chalice, project lead on Iron Brigade
Mike Neumann. Gearbox Software, creative director on Borderlands
Rob Pardo, chief creative officer at Blizzard, lead designer of World of Warcraft
Markus “Notch” Persson, creator of Minecraft and founder of Mojang
David Sirlin. designer on Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo HD Remix, Yomi
Do you plan on hunting down some of the Magic cards from the 2015 set this summer? Let us know in the comments.
Magic 2015 releases in July 18, 2014.
Follow Denny on Twitter @The_DFC.
Source: Wizards of the Coast