One of the biggest announcements from Wizards of the Coast during yesterday’s Magic Showcase 2021 was for its much-awaited partnership with the J.R.R. Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings franchise called Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth. During the livestream they gave very concrete details on what to expect for the set expansion that will release next year.
Here’s the full show from yesterday, the news will be at the 39:14 mark.
More details from Wizards of the Coast:
The Lord of the Rings is a spectacular match with the Magic aesthetic. So many of the fantasy tropes, tales, and creatures that are seared in our minds and into popular culture owe their inspiration or popularity to this story. Gandalf is the wizened Wizard. Sauron is the ultimate evil. The Fellowship of the Ring is the prototypical adventuring party.
And we’ve taken great care to create new art that captures the essence of the characters, locations, and stories of Middle-earth while staying true to Magic’s art style. This image of Gandalf from the set, for example, has the visual effects and colorful composition found in many Magic worlds.
So, in Tales of Middle-earth™, you’ll meet Magic’s take on Gandalf, Frodo, Aragorn, The One Ring, and so much more. We’ve taken great care to make the experience seamless between the Middle-earth loved by many, and the Magic aesthetic dear to fans.
We also knew that the immense size, the iconic nature of the stories, and the devotion fans have to The Lord of the Rings meant that we couldn’t do the set justice without creating a full product lineup to give as many players the opportunity to play with these classic characters as possible. Like all Universes Beyond product, the set will not be legal in Standard, but Modern (and Historic) legality provides the greatest opportunity for the most people to experience this beloved world while still holding Standard as its own space. While the set isn’t focused on Modern like a Modern Horizons set might be, we wanted to give as many players the opportunity to play with these cards and enjoy them.
Universes Beyond is about exploring worlds near and dear to all of us through the expression of Magic gameplay. As massive fans of the world created by J.R.R. Tolkien, we can’t wait to experience The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth™ with all of you.
As mentioned, the expansion will be a fully complete and draftable set – meaning you can expect the game to come out in booster format for limited and sealed play. The cards themselves though will be legally playable in Modern nd of course in other formats that will be applicable like the fan-favorite EDH (Commander) format. Adding to this, Wizards of the Coast also mentioned that they will go all-in with this set, meaning you can expect other product lines coming from Magic that will have the Lord of the Rings treatment like Secret Lair and, not surprisingly, a LotR-themed commander set.
Whether you’re a fan of either Magic of Middle-Earth, I’m pretty sure this collaboration hit all the right cylinders. Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth is slated to release sometime in 2023.