The Gathering’s Most Obscure Mechanics Are Its Best Features
Many factors went into making Magic: The Gathering the incredible fantasy TCG it is today, from captivating artwork and engaging gameplay to Magic‘s broad and diverse range of formats. The most important factor of all, though, was Wizards of the Coast’s willingness to continually tinker with Magic‘s tried-and-tested formula, experimenting with a myriad of new things along the way. More so than competitor TCGs like Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh!, Wizards has been brave enough to take serious risks with innovative card design in Magic: The Gathering, even if those innovations occasionally backfired.
Some of Wizards’ boldest design decisions paid off the most, like the double-faced cards from Innistrad. Wizards considered these a huge gamble at the time, but they were beloved by the community and will be making a comeback in Magic‘s upcoming set March of the Machine. Other more niche or obscure mechanics failed to become series staples, but ultimately even the most obscure and bizarre mechanics end up influencing Magic‘s game design in some way. Here’s why Magic: The Gathering‘s most niche mechanics are some of the game’s best features.
Magic: The Gathering Is Fueled by Innovation
There are dozens of mechanics and keywords that haven’t appeared in Magic: The Gathering for decades, with some being a relic of the 1990s. Many are likely to never feature in a set or pre-constructed deck again. At first glance, Magic may seem to be cluttered with lots of these failed ideas and mechanics that…