With the release of Modern Horizons 2 right around the corner, a lot of people are excited about new cards being injected into one of Magic: the Gathering‘s most loved formats. Clearly Wizards of the Coast likes the idea of doing this as we even see sets on Magic Arena to inject cards into Historic with Historic Anthology releases, and even Pioneer Masters soon. What about Legacy, one of the games most powerful formats, and once a mainstay of various competitive circuits? Can Wizards of the Coast ever print “Legacy Horizons“?
Filling a Purpose
When we talk about Modern Horizons, we know the purpose of the set is to bring new cards, previously not legal cards, and much needed reprints to the Modern format. You could also argue that this is a way to print interesting cards that are more Commander aligned as well that could not be incorporated into a preconstructed Commander deck. If we take this same thought process, and apply it to a Legacy focused product, we run into a few issues. First off, basically everything that’s printed in Magic: the Gathering is already legal in Legacy. All of the normal expansions, supplemental sets such as Battlebond or Conspiracy, and even Commander preconstructed decks all are fair game for use in Legacy, so adding “previously not legal” cards is a moot point. The second issue, and arguably the biggest issue, is the Reserved List. The barrier to entry in Legacy is cost of reserved list cards, such as original dual lands. There are also a few other spells that are commonly played that are quite expensive, but the overwhelming cost of a Legacy deck is going to be in the lands. The Reserved List is a list of old cards that Wizards of the Coast has stated that they will never reprint directly, or functionally, in paper. This leaves us with injecting new cards into the Legacy format.
Working Around the Reserved List
Considering the limited scope of how Wizards of the Coast could implement a “Legacy Horizons“, how can they print meaningful and impactful cards that will allow people to get into the format? The first hurdle to tackle is the original dual lands. This cycle of lands are the most powerful of the dual land cycles as they enter the battlefield untapped, produce 2 different colors of mana, and can be fetched from our library as they have the basic land types. These lands command a very high price tag, the cheapest of which is about $400 USD, and that’s for a white bordered Scrubland. Not to mention, people generally are not selling these lands on the secondary market unless they absolutely have to, and considering that they were only printed in Alpha, Beta, Unlimited and Revised, these lands are in short supply. The potential answer to this issue can be derived from a card that was recently printed in Modern Horizons 2, Garth One-Eyed.
As we see with Garth, he creates a token of one of the most powerful spells in call of Magic’s history, Black Lotus, which is definitely a reserved list card. Another reserved list card that Garth can create is Braingeyser, but the point here is that Wizards is open to a design where these powerful reserved list cards can be “reprinted”, just in a unique way. Noxious actually put out a tweet when Garth was spoiled that mirrors Garth’s design, but for dual lands.
While these are definitely custom made cards, and the names a bit satirical, the design in these cards aligns with that of Garth, allowing us to create token copies of original dual lands. One other side effect of this design is that we no longer need as many fetch lands as we have the ultimate choice in which land we create. Assuming that this set was an unlimited print run set and was set at a reasonable recommended price point, this could bring the price down of Legacy drastically. These lands would be also great inclusions in Commander as original duals are highly sought after for enfranchised Commander players as well.
With bringing down the cost of dual lands with the above cards, we are now left with a few other highly coveted reserved list cards that command astronomical price tag that could use some modern counterparts. We just saw Lion’s Eye Diamond get an update in a similar but slower card in Modern Horizons 2 in Diamond Lion, so what’s to say that we couldn’t do that with some other Legacy staples. If Diamond Lion doesn’t cross the line for functional reprint, then we can slap Mox Diamond on an artifact creature that costs 1 or 2 and it’d be fine. We have an enchantment version of Tabernacle, but maybe we can give this the same treatment that Gaea’s Cradle received in Ixalan with Growing Rites of Itlimoc. These are only a few of the myriad of reserved list cards that could use updating and would slot well into this set.
READ MORE: Modern Horizons 2 Spoiler Gallery
Could Always Use More Reprints
The last thing that this set could achieve is looking to reprint some more expensive staple cards for Legacy, to give them some more circulation in the market. Cards like Force of Will, Sylvan Library and Ancient Tomb all command a bit of a higher price tag, and at least 2 of the 3 of these would be great for Commander as well. There’s definitely more of these cards that we could include, especially ones that only have 1 printing, but these ones definitely hit home as for sure includes.
How Will It Happen?
The question of how this set could come into existence is an interesting thought as well. Wizards could very well put together a stellar set for Legacy specifically, just like Modern Horizons, but with the lack of support for Legacy in a competitive environment from Wizards, I think it’s unlikely to see a full retail set. What is more likely is to have a Secret Lair style product, a “Legacy Anthology” if you will. A smaller footprint set that hits key cards needing reprints for both Commander and Legacy alike. The anthology would most likely command a crazy price tag given the nature of the cards, but it’s something that I’m sure that people would purchase. Or another thought would be that cards similar to these get included in Modern Horizons 3. We’re seeing Modern being pushed more towards Legacy levels of power and depth, so it’s definitely possible.
Do you think that a Legacy Horizons would be a welcomed product to the community? Let us know in the comments!