Magic the Gathering: Arena’s new set is a love letter to D&D

It’s unthinkable, untenable, pure heresy. Sure, there have been supplementary D&D books for several Magic planes, but classic D&D characters, monsters, and gear represented in Magic: The Gathering? No way. And yet Adventures in the Forgotten Realms is a perfect fit for Magic.

I recently had the chance to play around with the entire Forgotten Realms set in Magic Arena and build some decks. There are so many complex interactions between all these new cards that it’s just as well the Arena client does a lot of the admin for you, but even still, this set isn’t for beginners. It isn’t even necessarily for D&D players looking to cut their teeth in MTG.

Descriptions are excessively wordy, especially on cards for which you have to roll a D20 – the most iconic D&D die. For such cards there are up to four different outcomes, and you’ll need to consider them all carefully before committing to the play. It’s a lot to think about in the middle of a round. Take Treasure Chest as an example. Depending on the D20 roll, this card can trigger a trap that damages you, heal you and add some extra cards to your hand, create extra mana resources, or let you play an artifact card. Reading and understanding those effects during the game’s time-limited turns leaves little room for deciding if it’s the best play.

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