12, Aug, 23

Wilds of Eldraine Leaks Showcase Strange New Tokens

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Article at a Glance

Wilds of Eldraine looks like a super interesting and flavorful set so far. Taking some inspiration from Throne of Eldraine, this set is showcasing major fairy tale vibes. Up to this point, we had a small chunk of spoilers, alongside some hints from head MTG designer Mark Rosewater about different card names, abilities, and types that might appear in the set. Some cards from the Enchanting Tales bonus sheet have also been previewed, including some with intriguing anime art. While some cards look very powerful, such as Moonshaker Cavalry, dubbed the white Craterhoof Behemoth, there haven’t been a lot of new cards to look at yet.

Well, that is until now. Today, a big group of Wilds of Eldraine cards were leaked. Many of the card images that were leaked look relatively clear, and there are some interesting new mechanics and designs to look forward to. Notably, leaks do not always turn out to be real, as these are not official spoilers. However, a lot of information from these cards lines up with Mark Rosewater’s previous Wilds of Eldraine teasers. From mechanical overlap to matching card names, Rosewater’s teasers and these leaks do share a lot in common, suggesting these are, in fact, real. For that reason, if you instead wish to wait for the official reveal of these Wilds of Eldraine cards, consider this your spoiler warning.

New Mechanics

Right off the bat, there’s a lot of new information regarding set mechanics. Both the cards Torch the Tower and Thunderous Debut utilize a new mechanic called “Bargain.” Bargain appears to be very similar to Kicker, where you have the option to pay an additional cost for a specific additional benefit added to the normal effects of the card. For example, with Thunderous Debut, you get to look at the top 20 cards and reveal two Creatures to put into your hand no matter what. However, if you used the Bargain ability, those Creatures go onto the battlefield instead.

Bargain specifically lets you sacrifice an Artifact, Enchantment, or token to gain the card’s bonuses. As this ability might suggest, this set is very heavily focused on tokens. Given how much Throne of Eldraine was centered around Food tokens, it makes sense that there would be at least a minor token theme. The “Celebration” mechanic on Raging Battle Mouse also plays well with tokens, since you get a bonus if two or more permanents entered the battlefield under your control during each of your turns.

Interestingly though, one of the various hints Mark Rosewater gave about the set was that there would be a new kind of token, just like how Food was a new type of token back in Throne of Eldraine. It appears from Lord Skitter’s Blessing above as well as Spiteful Hexmage below that we now know what this new token is.

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New Token Type

The card Lord Skitter’s Blessing specifically references something called a “Wicked Role” token. This token interestingly is created attached to a Creature you control and acts as an Aura with a certain effect. In the case of this Wicked Role token, the Enchanted Creature gets a small power and toughness boost, and the opponent loses one life when the Aura is put into your graveyard. In this case, the token provided is beneficial to the Creature it is attached to, but it looks like there are other types of Role tokens that have a negative effect on the Creature instead.

Let’s look at the card Spiteful Hexmage, for example. For only one mana, this card enters the battlefield as a three-power Creature. This is definitely above rate, so unsurprisingly, there is a catch. The catch in this case is that when Spiteful Hexmage enters the battlefield, you have to create a “Cursed Role” token attached to a Creature you control. This Cursed Role token not only eliminates any other beneficial Role that might be attached to the Creature, but also turns your Creature into a one-power one-toughness Creature for as long as the Cursed Role remains attached.

Both flavorfully and in practice, these Cursed Roles work extremely well with the new Bargain mechanic. Not only do you get to remove the Cursed Role downside by sacrificing the token to Bargain, but you also get whatever bonuses the Bargain card provides for sacrificing a token in the first place.

This set looks like it has a lot of synergy, which could provide for a very enjoyable Limited environment. This new token type is just one of many card properties that matches well with specific teasers from Mark Rosewater, so let’s take a look at some other leaks and how they match up.

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More Teaser Overlap

One of the unique cards Mark Rosewater hinted at was an interesting “Lobotomy” effect. Typically, cards in this camp exile a card from some zone, such as the graveyard, then allows you to search your opponent’s graveyard, hand, and library and exile cards with the same name. One of the more famous cards in this group is Surgical Extraction, which has seen extensive Constructed play for years. The black card in the top right, The End, appears to exile a Creature or Planeswalker on the battlefield, then search its controller’s graveyard, hand, and library for additional copies of the card and exile them.

Similar to Lost Legacy, the opponent does get to draw a card for each copy of the card exiled from their hand this way. This card even costs two mana less to cast if your life total is five or less. At only four mana, The End does a good Vraska’s Contempt impression with the “Lobotomy” bonus tacked on. One more card with an effect that matches a teaser from Roasewater is Thundering Debut. As mentioned, this card digs twenty cards deep for Creatures to either put in play or hand. One piece of text from Rosewater’s teasers was that a card looks at the top twenty cards, so this checks that box.

We also know that this set is focused around “Fairy tale Sagas.” While this isn’t entirely described, there was speculation that this could mean that different Sagas were designed to tell a specific Fairy tale. Now, with Three Blind Mice getting leaked, it appears this is indeed the case. Three Blind Mice was even one of the cards whose name was spoiled by Rosewater before the card’s textbox.

Another card whose name was spoiled was Food Fight, which provides a unique way to convert your excess Artifacts into damage to any target. While these leaks have not been confirmed as official spoilers, all of this overlap suggests that these cards are indeed real. This set looks very intriguing and flavorful so far, and it’s definitely worth keeping our eyes peeled for more leaks and spoilers over time. The official spoiler season for Wilds of Eldraine starts this Tuesday.

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