Magic the Gathering is getting a new set format for its 25th anniversary this year: Battlebond, for Two-Headed Giant drafting. From the announcement:
Battlebond is this year’s “Draft innovation” set. You’ve seen Draft innovation sets in years past with Conspiracy, Conspiracy: Take the Crown, and Unstable. For 2018, we’re doing something brand new: Battlebond!
So, what exactly is the new twist behind the drafting format this time?
Battlebond is the first set in Magic’s history designed specifically for Two-Headed Giant play! Some sets, like Oath of the Gatewatch, have dabbled with this in the past, but Battlebond takes that to the next level. The new mechanics in Battlebond are unlike anything we’ve ever done in Magic, and they really elevate the promise of Two-Headed Giant to its full potential!
The brand new plane, Kylem, is apparently inspired by e-sports. I wonder if it’s going to be Blizzard themed somehow…just kidding. The more interesting news is that the 254 card set will include many reprints, which “we will be excited for” with 85 new cards. These will be legal in Legacy, Vintage, and EDH too. The set is due to drop on June 8th.
Magic 25 is also set to be a huge shot in the arm for the flagging popularity of the game. Considering rumors that Hasbro might be priming Wizards for a sale, Battlebond might be another way to drum up interest. Two-Headed Giant is fun but I rarely play it, so I don’t foresee getting into the set. Unless I get “excited” for the reprints once the spoilers start to drop.