After months of anticipation, Dominaria United has officially launched, much to the delight of many fans. Mere days after Dominaria United’s launch, however, players already find themselves inundated with new cards and spoilers. Unfortunately for those who like to keep on top of what’s going on, it appears players are going to have a lot to keep track of. This is thanks to MTG’s perpetual spoiler season returning in full force for the following few sets.
An MTG Double Bill
While many fans may be disappointed to see it again, the return of Magic’s ceaseless spoiler season is no surprise. After all, for months now, we’ve known that the Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks and Unfinity will launch on the same day, October 7th. This curious occurrence is due to both products being affected by delays stemming from global supply chain issues and COVID-19. Somewhat sensibly, following these frustrating delays, Wizards of the Coast appears to not want to keep players waiting. Subsequently, rather than staggering the releases of these products, Wizards is seemingly releasing them as soon as they’re available.
While this dubious decision is great news for those who’ve been waiting since April for Unfinity, it might not be good for everyone; Wizards of the Coast included. If recent data mined from TCGplayer’s API is to be believed, MTG Sets are already stepping on each other’s toes. In the wake of Double Masters 2022’s spectacular value, Dominaria United appears to be substantially underperforming. The actual ramifications of this release schedule are still developing. However, it could spell trouble for Wizards. With these releases two months apart, there’s no telling how two products being released on the same day will fare.
While the release of the Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks and Unfinity is still just over a month away, we still have a lot of spoilers to go through until then. Recently, Wizards confirmed that the Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks would be being spoiled throughout this week. Unfortunately, however, there was no word about what was going on with Unfinity. Thankfully for Un- set fans, Magic’s Lead Designer, Mark Rosewater, has come to the rescue. In a Blogatog post, Rosewater confirmed that “next week, Unfinity previews start on Tuesday.”
Spoilers Forever After
While there is no word on exactly how long Unfinity spoilers will last, we’ll likely be seeing a steady stream of new cards for at least the next two weeks, if not longer. This will leave MTG players with a lot to keep track of, to say the least. Since spoilers are usually worth getting excited about, is this really a bad thing? While both the Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks and Unfinity feature Eternal legal cards, they do target separate audiences. At its core, Unfinity is meant to be a fun Draft set. The Warhammer Decks are obviously only for Commander players. In theory, this should prevent the players of each format from getting too overwhelmed.
While Wizards’ products may target different primary audiences, it’s clear that many players still feel overwhelmed by the release schedule. Unfortunately for fans, this crowded calendar doesn’t appear to be slowing down in the future. In the rest of 2022 alone, players can look forward to the Warhammer 40,000 Commander decks, Unfinity, Dominaria United Alchemy, The Brothers’ War, Jumpstart 2022, and The Brothers’ War Alchemy. While all the dates have not been confirmed just yet, MTG’s jam-packed release schedule means it’ll likely never be more than a few weeks before a new spoiler season starts or set releases.
For many players, this nonstop schedule is just too much. Recently while we talked about Dominaria United’s lackluster sales, many in our audience blamed WotC for releasing too many sets. “This is the year of too much,” Mikayla Leutzinger commented. Similarly, Alexander Caviris lamented that “rolling spoiler season is just too fn annoying. The density of format warping cards is pretty high in some sets too which a lot of people find fatiguing.”
What Can Be Done
With players making their voices heard, is it time that Wizards of the Coast changes MTG’s release schedule once again? Judging by the recently mined numbers, Wizards’ current approach, for better or worse, is still generating huge sales. This means that even if vocal players are getting disenfranchised, things might be staying the same. Mark Rosewater has commented in the past that “success breeds repetition,” so why would Wizards change what’s working?
Since we’re seeing so many complaints, we can only hope that Wizards can find a happy middle ground soon. Unfortunately, that soon appears to still be a while away. So far, 2023 is shaping up to be a similarly crowded year of releases.