Traumatic Revelation
13, Mar, 23

Recycled MTG Cards Leak March of the Machine Details

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Article at a Glance

As a physical card game, which has pieces that can easily go missing, it’s not uncommon for upcoming MTG cards to get leaked. We saw this extensively with Phyrexia: All Will Be One, which was leaked time and time again. The set was leaked so much, in fact, that practically every card was revealed before the spoiler season even began! While players didn’t feel this ruined the set’s story or pacing entirely, Wizards nevertheless doesn’t want their secrets being spilled. This is especially true for March of the Machine, which almost concludes the monumental MTG story of the Phyrexian Arc. Unfortunately for Wizards of the Coast, however, it appears this hugely anticipated set has already been leaked. If you can really call it that. 

As always, before we get into the article, since we’re talking about leaks, it’s important to note that leaks can be faked. Subsequently, it’s best to wait for official spoilers before getting too excited. That being said, these leaks do appear to be the genuine article thanks to their source, however, there’s still no absolute guarantee of authenticity. 

March of the Machine Leaks

March of the Machine Leak
What could be the corner of a Battle card | u/Dat-puss

While technically accurate, it’s admittedly rather generous to call the cards revealed by u/Dat-puss on Reddit proper leaks. Unlike recent The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth leaks which were found in the garbage, these cards are practically illegible. Rather than being found in the trash, u/Dat-puss are reportedly sourced from a paper recycling center. At this location, u/Dat-puss’ friend supposedly processed “bales upon bales of just mostly magic cards.” Out of all those threshed cards, the anonymous friend took seemingly only took five photos, only one of which actually reveals anything. 

The first detail MTG players picked up on in u/Dat-puss’ leak was the apparent inclusion of a March of the Machine card. Noted by Reddit user u/Duramboros seems this may even be our first glimpse at a Battle card. “Is that thing at the bottom of the first picture a Battle? it’s a MOM card, and it has a DFC symbol in a very unusual place.” Unfortunately, while it is possible this card could indeed be a Battle card, there’s no telling for certain without additional images. Sadly, since the Double-Faced Card symbol and Expansion Code are all that’s visible, it’s unclear what the card does. 

Thanks to the few details we have been told, as well as this curious leak, it seems all but certain Battle cards are Double-Faced cards. Figuring this detail out, however, doesn’t get us any closer to actually seeing spoilers for them. After all, the mechanic’s expected reveal during March of the Machine’s Set Debut video is still weeks away. That being said, it is possible The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle Earth could also include Battle cards. As you can imagine, this prospect has some players seriously excited.

“We got the preview. Still weeks away from seeing what Battles are officially, I think. Unless they show us one IN THE LORD OF THE RINGS PREVIEW ON TUESDAY LET’S GOOOOOO.”


Art Assumptions

March of the Machine Nissa Leak-
Nissa! Maybe… | u/Dat-puss

While many MTG players were understandably fixated on the corner of what could be a Battle card, they were seemingly missing the bigger reveal. Brought to attention by u/telenstias, the most prominent card in the image appeared to be a brand new card. Translated to be “Leyline something” by u/Duramboros, the card is supposedly an aura with “Enchant Legendary Creature.” While this snippet of a mechanic isn’t too interesting, the card’s art is a whole different story. From the blurry and damaged art, it’s difficult to tell what’s going on. However, it nevertheless looks like Nissa Revane. More importantly, it looks like an un-compleated Nissa Revane!  

With March of the Machine’s story yet to begin, it’s unclear if this will actually happen or if the art is just misleading. Nevertheless, MTG players such as u/Dimmins2 have already started speculating. “Maybe Nissa gets un-compleated due to an influx of Leyline mana something or other?” Alternatively, players such as u/grilled-mac-n-cheese went one step further, stating, “she’s going to lose her spark/planeswalker status.” For better or worse, there’s no telling what will actually happen. However, it won’t be long until we find out. After all, March of the Machine’s story starts later this week, on the 16th of March!

Recycling Rejoice

Paper Tiger
Paper Tiger | Unglued

Alongside the enticing leaks, several MTG players noted how it was surprising to see cards at a recycling center. Typically, due to their construction, which features a plastic core, recycling MTG cards has been difficult in most regions. Thanks to their extra coating and occasional lamination, foil cards are even more notoriously difficult to properly dispose of. Within the pictures from u/Dat-puss, however, all different kinds of MTG cards and foiling techniques are visible. If these cards being recycled, rather than just threshed before further destruction, this would be a significant sustainability win. Due to a lack of context, however, it’s unclear exactly why or how these cards are being processed.

Whatever the reason these cards are destroyed en masse, this process isn’t entirely out of the ordinary. While recycling all these cards would be a new innovation, the destruction of early prints is an unfortunate necessity. This was pointed out by u/swole-and-naked on Reddit, who recounted their experiences with the industry. “Large-scale printing facilities always have a lot of paper waste. At our printing facility, we shred and throw away a f*ckton of misprints and test prints too. It’s not that odd.” 

Ultimately, since waste is an unfortunate part of physical TCGs, there’s not much that can be done. Making cards easier to recycle, however, is undoubtedly a welcome improvement that’ll help to mitigate the game’s environmental impact. Similarly, changing the traditional flow wrap booster packs for a biodegradable alternative would be a major sustainability win. Unfortunately, however, while Wizards appears to be experimenting with this concept, there’s no telling when it will become a reality. 

Read More: Has Everyone Been Drafting Phyrexia: All Will Be One Wrong?

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