10, Apr, 23

MTG Players Outraged By Ultra-Exclusive Art Treatment

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Article at a Glance

More so than any other set in history, March of the Machine is artistically very busy. This is thanks to the set playing into its Multiversal themes across both the main set and its bonus sheet. Releasing a cacophony of different art treatments that reprise old Booster Fun frames, Wizards is showcasing the scale of this Multiversal war to great effect. Alongside fitting the themes of March of the Machine, the various art treatments are already beloved by many MTG players. This is especially true for Multiverse Legends cards, which mainly provide a new look for a plethora of Commander favorites. Unfortunately, while there is a lot to love about March of the Machine’s art, there are some controversial aspects. Namely, some of the set’s best art is simply too rare to be enjoyable or even attainable for many MTG players. 

Praetor Problems

Jin-Gitaxias Serialized Praetor
Jin-Gitaxias Serialized Praetor | March of the Machine

To ensure that March of the Machine is a slam dunk for collectors and casual players alike, Wizards has brought back serialized cards. Last used for The Brothers’ War, these somewhat gaudy card styles have nevertheless been a smash hit with fans. This isn’t too surprising, considering it’s hard not to love opening a Collector Booster to find a $1000+ card inside! Just like The Brothers’ War, March of the Machine’s serialized cards predominantly revolve around the set’s bonus sheet. Featuring the same art with a “double rainbow” foiling technique and serialized number, there’s little to set these cards apart. This makes this presence within sets fairly harmless, much to the delight of many players.

Unfortunately, while serialized cards have previously just been a welcome novelty, March of the Machine has gone one step further. As, alongside the serialized Multiverse Legends cards, the set also features serialized versions of the five main set Praetor cards. While this is a nice way to send the Phyrexians off with a bang, unfortunately, it’s not all harmless fun. Unlike past serialized cards, these five Praetors all feature brand-new and absolutely stunning artwork

Unfortunately for players who want to get their hands on this art, sadly, it’s not going to be easy. Just like other serialized cards, only 500 copies of these prized Praetors are being printed. This likely means each of these cards will cost $1000, if not a whole lot more. Unsurprisingly, with this steep price tag gatekeeping art, many MTG players aren’t too best pleased about this artificially collectible promotion. 

Egregious Exclusivity

March of the Machine Serialized Praetor Art
Serialized Praetor Art | u/ds445

Somewhat remarkably, the existence of March of the Machine’s serialized Praetors isn’t exactly a new development. After all, they were announced by Wizards of the Coast back in late March during the set’s debut video. However, thanks to just how much information was released, these controversial cards were seemingly buried beneath a litany of spoilers. Subsequently, it was only recently this story was brought back to life following the first serialized Praetors being found. Thanks to LGS’, lucky players, and Loading Ready Run opening up early product, the first serialized Praetors have already been found. This led to the Praetors taking over social media across the weekend for all the wrong reasons. 

When looking at the quintet of serialized Praetors, MTG players couldn’t deny just how good they looked. Many players even lauded the art on display as being some of the best in the entire set. Unfortunately for Wizards, however, this praise was often coupled with a rather major caveat that bemoaned the card’s artificial scarcity. Reddit user u/NoirLamia777, for instance, commented, “Amazing art so bummed it’s only on serialized ones,” after gazing at the visage of Elesh Norn. Similarly, u/GrimmKat lamented Wizards for making all these gorgeous artworks needlessly exclusive for the sole sake of collectibility. 

“I’m depressed over the fact that this artwork is exclusive to these, which means I can never own all cool cards with Praetors… I couldn’t care less about these stupid number editions… At least release regular ones with the same art :(“


Beyond just complaining about the unique art on these serialized cards, several MTG players announced their plans to take action. Rather than committing to opening up hundreds of Collector Boosters, however, many players opted for a different route. “I’ve never proxied before, but now I might have to,” Reddit user u/HotSpicyMilk commented. “I love these arts, but not enough to shell out the money to procure them all.” With this sentiment being shared across social media, it’s clear players are more than just a bit miffed.

Future Frustrations

Serialized Atraxa, Praetor's Voice

Currently, there’s no telling whether or not unique art on serialized cards will become a common feature in the future. If it does, evidently, a lot of players aren’t going to be happy about it. That being said, however, not every player is so despondent, as some believe this is what serialized cards need. Making this point, u/Kingofdrats claimed March of the Machine’s unique art is “obviously the best way to do it,” as it makes these cards more than a novelty. While this opinion might not be in the majority, it’s clear that serialized cards are nevertheless a complex issue. 

In the grand scheme of things, it’s unclear what the future serialized cards have in the world of MTG. On one hand, while we’ve seen them a lot recently, it’s technically possible they could disappear in 2024 and beyond. On the other, more likely, hand, however, it seems that serialized cards are here to stay. Likely appearing in every Bonus Sheet going forward, serialized cards may become a mainstay of MTG set releases. Ultimately, at the end of the day, Wizards hasn’t announced any long-term plans just yet. Subsequently, we’ll just have to wait and see to find out what’s in store for the future. 

Read More: MTG March of the Machine Causes 1900% Price Spikes!

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