There's Big news in the Magic: The Gathering world today: Wizards of the Coast is set to become a whole new division of Hasbro, they have a brand new logo and snazzy site update, and they are expanding the Magic world with a new series known as Universes Beyond - which includes upcoming crossovers with properties such as Warhammer 40,000 and The Lord of the Rings.
There isn't a lot known about Universes Beyond yet besides what is contained in this article from the Mothership that was released after today's Hasbro Investor Event (where it was revealed that Wizards had an incredible record-setting year in 2020 - their most profitable ever.) The following quote, pulled from the article, seems to capture the creative impetus behind the upcoming projects:
Universes Beyond came about thanks to a simple thought—if we can expand our story beyond the game system to things like comics, novels, and other games, then surely we can expand the game system to let players explore worlds outside of the worlds of Magic.
We are all fans of these other universes. Many of us imagined what it might be like to play a game of Magic with Gandalf the Grey, sketched out how we might translate the One Ring to Magic, or wanted to build a deck around the mighty Space Marines. In many ways, Universes Beyond is us living out those dreams of our own.
Here are the big takeaways thus far:
- Universes Beyond will be branded slightly differently, with cards having distinct frames and sporting the holofoil stamps that debuted with Secret Lair X The Walking Dead
- Secret Lair X The Walking Dead is being grandfathered into Universes Beyond
- These will not only be Secret Lair products, Universes Beyond will generally be sold in all Magic channels
- There are going to be Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks sold everywhere Commander decks are currently offered
- Universes Beyond cards will not be Standard legal
- The upcoming Magic set Adventures in Forgotten Realms is not a part of Universes Beyond
- Wizards intends to release cards similar to the Ikoria Godzilla cards as well as stand-alone cards like the Secret Lair X The Walking Dead cards, but will often default to standalone cards such as the ones released in the Secret Lair X The Walking Dead
The Hasbro Investor Event also showed the world that Wizards will be aggressively expanding their IPs into more digital games of all kinds, expanding into a "robust new IP pipeline", and "and expanding underdeveloped retail channels like direct-to-consumer, e-commerce, and mass-market on a global scale."
Magic fans are going to be experiencing an expansion of their favorite game on a scale that has never been seen before - it is clear that Hasbro and Wizards have huge plans for the Magic IP - and no matter what ends up happening, our favorite game isn't going away any time soon.