The latest Magic: The Gathering set is the first-ever crossover with Dungeons & Dragons. Since Wizards of the Coast, a surprise since they own both properties, but this is the first time they’ve decided to meld both worlds together. But the main question: do they come together like butter on toast? They do indeed.

How does a set that’s a crossover with Dungeons & Dragons fit into the MTG release schedule? Well, it’s taken the slot of a core set. And it’s a set that’s entirely legal. Standard, Modern, Commander — you’re good to go for all of the cards in here. And in some ways, it feels like the design held back at least a tiny bit of too many out-of-the-box ideas that could have broken the game. I’m sure if it was a self-contained set, you could have gone a little weirder. What we have here is a nice middle-point.

Flavour-wise, there’s a mouthwatering amount in Adventures in the Forgotten Realms. All your favourite Dungeons & Dragons creature types are here, and the set introduces ‘Bard,’ ‘Halfing’, ‘Tiefling’ and more creature types for the first time. There are legendary dragons, spider queen’s and, of course, zombies. The basic lands in this set even have flavour text for the first time. There’s also flavour added to basic abilities like on the card “You See a Guard Approach”, which says “Distract the Guard – Tap target creature” instead of simply stating it taps a creature when it enters the battlefield something similar.


The two key mechanics introduced in this set make it feel like a legit Dungeons & Dragons crossover. The first is cards that revolve around rolling D20’s. Not like MTG hasn’t always had a use for dice, but when drafting this set, you can put together a legitimate tactic of drafting all the D20 rolling cards and put your win/lose rate on some perfect old-fashioned random die throws. 

But it’s the second new card type that makes this set feel most like a Dungeons and Dragons adventure, and it’s the legitimate dungeon adventuring. There are three dungeons in this set that sit outside the game, much like your tokens would. Whenever a card says to “venture into a dungeon”, you can pick any of the three dungeons and begin your adventure into it by moving into the first room. “Lost Mine of Phandelver,” says Scry 1 when you enter the cave’s entrance. At this stage, you’d keep a small die or item on the card to keep track of where you are in the dungeon, and each time another card says to venture into a dungeon, you’ll move forward one room on that card. Finish a dungeon, and there are many cards in Adventures of the Forgotten Realms that will reward you with bonus abilities or extra attack power. 

I was sent over several packs of Adventures of the Forgotten Realms this past week to open. The 15-card draft boosters are the typical pack you should be saving for drafting in-store or with friends. The set boosters are more exciting as they give you a guaranteed foil of some rarity, a chance for a borderless common or uncommon, an opportunity for a card from The List‘ and most exciting for me, an art card, or even better, a foil-stamped art card. The most exciting pack to open, however, are the Collector Boosters. These are a great time from start to finish, and you’ll find it hard to be disappointed with the contents inside.

Here’s what’s inside a Collectors Booster

  • 1x Foil extended-art, Showcase, or Borderless rare or mythic 

  • 1x Foil Showcase or a borderless common or uncommon

  • 1x Showcase or a Borderless rare or mythic

  • 1x Entended-art commander, rare or mythic

  • 1x Extended art rare or mythic

  • 1x Foil rare or mythic rare

  • 1x Foil basic land

  • 1x Foil double-sided token

  • 2x Showcase or a Borderless common or uncommon

  • 2x Foil uncommon

  • 4x Foil uncommon

After seeing all of that, you’ll probably want to know that these boosters will set you back $40. And, of course, you can get some less-exciting boosters, and your friend may get an absolute all-star pack. That said, if you want to drop money on a booster that’ll get your heart racing, it’s these Collector’s Boosters. I’d love to get my hands on some more as they’re so much fun to crack.

Adventures in the Forgotten Realms is a banger of a draft set that will be a blast to play or watch others draft for the next several months. I’m not sure how this set will affect the Standard meta-game as that’s something I don’t keep up with currently, but there are plenty of cards in this set players will want for their Commander decks. From Commanders themselves, like the multi-colour dragon, “Tiamat,” to cards like “Vorpal Sword”, which has an activated ability that lets you win the game if you hit your opponent in the face with the sword. There’s also “Wish”, which enables you to play a card outside of the game. Love that. 


The MTG Core Sets have usually been the best place to get into the game. There’s good cards, balanced mechanics, and an introduction to the game without having a set-bogged down by too many mechanics and tools built around a specific story or sets structure. The weirdest thing about Adventures in the Forgotten Realms is that I think it’s a fantastic place to jump into MTG while being none of the things that made Core Sets excellent places to start. There’s so much flavour here, and there is a crucial focus on several mechanics — but they’re all so much fun and not at all confusing. If you want t get your friends into MTG, take them to an Adventures in the Forgotten Realms draft.

Magic: The Gathering – Adventures in the Forgotten Realms is out now in-store, and you can also play MTG: Arena, which is free to download. 

Wizards of the Coast supplied us with Adventures in the Forgotten Realms product.