Step Between Worlds | Outlaws of Thunder Junction
17, Apr, 24

Wizards of the Coast President Is Stepping Down

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Throughout recent years, Magic: The Gathering has entered a new renaissance. As much as players may have resisted, innovations from Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro have hugely expanded Magic’s popularity. Between the expansion of Universes Beyond and the growing number of products, there’s no denying that MTG is obscenely successful.

After several successful years, MTG has now become a billion-dollar brand under the watchful eye of Cynthia Williams. As Wizards of the Coast’s president, Williams undoubtedly spearhead the game’s expansion and growth. Despite this, it was recently announced that Cynthia Williams is stepping down from their role at Wizards of the Coast. At the time, no replacement has been named.

A Short History

Cynthia Williams

Having replaced Chris Cocks as the President of Wizards of the Coast in February of 2022, Cynthia Williams’ reign has not been long. During this time, while Magic: The Gathering has grown impressively, the players haven’t been so pleased. As Reddit users such as u/AnwaAnduril were quick to point out, the past two years have been fraught with controversy.

Between 30th Anniversary Edition, Aftermath sets, storytelling woes, and the Pinkertons being deployed, there have undeniably been a fair few controversies. While it’s unclear how involved Williams was in each of these decisions, they all happened under their watch. Thanks to this, many MTG players on social media aren’t exactly complaining about this news.

While it’s easy to point at the damning controversies from recent years, 2022 and 2023 were hardly all bad. The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth, for example, was a breakout success, paving the way for future releases. On top of this, after years of stagnation, Standard is now finding its feet once again following recent developments.

Importantly, while Cynthia Williams may have led Wizards from 2022 until now, their reign may not be over.  Since MTG typically operates on a two-year development cycle, projects Williams started may still be in the works. This appears to be the case for the hugely anticipated Marvel crossover that debuts in 2025.

Ultimately, while MTG players may not be her greatest fans, Cynthia Williams has overseen MTG’s impressive continued growth. With this in mind, it’s hard to say their time at Wizards of the Coast has been unsuccessful. The only question that remains is what comes next once Williams fully leaves Wizards of the Coast.

What comes Next?

Sword of Once and Future | March of the Machine
Sword of Once and Future | March of the Machine

In the filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, it’s stated that Williams will depart Wizards on April 26th. Currently, no successor for the position of President has been named at this time. According to the document, Wizards is “conducting a process to identify her successor, looking at both internal and external candidates.”

Since no replacement has been named yet, we really can’t predict what’s going to happen to Wizards of the Coast. Considering Chris Cocks is still Hasbro’s CEO, we doubt monumental changes are imminent, but technically that is possible. Despite the fundamental lack of information, MTG players on social media have still begun fervently speculating about the future.

As much as there is some mild hope for the future, it’s safe to say the majority of MTG players aren’t optimistic. Following a few less-than-stellar quarterly reports, many MTG players fear a new president being brought on to “right the ship.” Should this happen, as u/Mlb1993 suggests, the new hire could “bend over backward to impress.”

Depending on how the new president aims to impress, this could lead to sweeping changes in the MTG landscape. In theory, Universes Beyond could be pushed even further with even more products being churned out en masse. Ultimately, this is just fearmongering, as we really don’t know what will happen.

To be optimistic, Magic: The Gathering has a lot of great things about it that could be further improved. Should the new president set their sights on MTG Arena, for instance, the game could become its best self. The same is true for any potential strength of Magic as there’s always room to grow and improve.

The Waiting Game

Adventure Awaits
Adventure Awaits | Zendikar Rising

Ultimately, since no successor has been named yet, we don’t know what the future will hold. Once we know who’s filling Williams’ shoes, we can start to theorize more, but for now, we just don’t know. Considering Williams departs Wizards of the Coast on the 26th, hopefully, more information will be revealed soon. For now, we’re just going to have to wait and see what happens next.

Read More: Outlaws of Thunder Junction Can Cost $1000+ on MTG Arena

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