What might the Magic’s summer set bring? In this article I’ll use my DND knowledge and make some speculative Adventures in the Forgotten Realms predictions. But first, let’s talk about what Adventures in the Forgotten Realms set actually is.
Over the past several years we’ve been seeing crossovers between Dungeons & Dragons and Magic the Gathering. It started with PDF’s to help with running D&D campaigns in Magic the Gathering planes. We even got the Ravnica and Theros books! Now later this year we will get the opposite, a Magic the Gathering set focused on the Forgotten Realms.
The Forgotten Realms set is going to replace the usual core set we get each year. I’m hoping moving forward they keep with this strategy. It’ll be fun to see a new set of artwork and new characters for future core sets. Core sets usually gave us reprint of old cards and sometimes they introduced alternate versions of existing characters. This does bring up one very confusing aspect of this set, planeswalkers.
Planeswalkers in Neverwinter?
Are they going to have planeswalkers in this set? Normally core sets have 5-10 planeswalkers, with one character for each color and two versions of each character between prebuilt decks and booster packs.
The world of Forgotten Realms doesn’t have planeswalkers in the way Magic the Gathering does. However, there is nothing stopping them from showing Sorin on vacation in Ravenloft or Garruk in the loving embrace of an owlbear.
There are several wizards capable of traveling between planes that they could rebrand as a planeswalker, but I feel this wouldn’t fit the lore at all. D&D planeswalkers don’t have planeswalker sparks, they just cast spells or use magic items that allow them to travel to other planes.
The Forgotten Realms also has their realms frequently overlapping each other, so there are many events where someone accidentally wanders into another plane, or a plane invades another plane.
Building Your Party
The party mechanic first appeared in Rise of Zendikar, and it makes perfect sense to build on it in Forgotten Realms. The party mechanic want pays you off for controlling at least one of each creature type of warrior, cleric, rogue, and wizard.
Now I’ve read that since these sets were produced at similar times, there is a chance of the actual mechanic not appearing in this set too. That being said I expect at least major support for it. The actual mechanic might appear in one of the commander decks. I feel like they’re going to introduce a lot of the factions and characters by having non-legendary creatures that follow them. Some examples I’m expecting:
- A wizard that works for The Red Wizards of Thay
- A rogue that works for the Harpers
- Clerics that worship popular gods such as Lolth or Moradin
- A warrior that is a guard from Waterdeep or Neverwinter
There will also likely be more legendaries built around the party mechanic in at least the commander decks, but it is difficult predicting which characters would fit this strategy. Maybe some of the major rulers such as Lord Nasher or Bruenor Battlehammer. Elminster is the most likely candidate due to his history as a leader and being known as a master at warrior, rogue, and wizard skills.
The Forgotten Realms have many famous adventurers and evil doers, so I expect a decent number of legendary creatures. Maybe not as many as Dominaria, but I imagine more than most sets. Here are some Forgotten Realms predictions about what adventurers are the most likely to make the cut?
It’s impossible to think about the Forgotten Realms without thinking about the heroic drow Drizzt. He appears in an absurd number of books and is referenced in many more. We already see him and his panther on box art.
Drizzt has two magical scimitars that will likely appear as equipment. I see Drizzt as a green/white creature, one that might boost his fellow creatures somehow. I thought about him making a panther token but then he’d be way too similar to Tolsimir, Friend to Wolves.
Drizzt’s panther companion. Guenhwyvar is actually a supernatural creature tied to a magical item, a panther statue that turns into a panther. There is a very good chance of an artifact that flips into a creature for this card.
There are several characters that travel with Drizzt throughout his journeys, but the main ones are: Regis, Wulfgar, Bruenor, and Catti-brie. Regis is a known thief, while the other three fit the warrior/barbarian archetypes. I can see Wulfgar, Bruenor, and Catti-brie being red cards, possibly red/green or red/white. Regis will likely be a blue and black rogue.
Frequently considered the anti-Drizzt, they find themselves as enemies multiple times and both have extremely similar skill sets. He also traveled with another fan favorite character, Jarlaxle, so we could see them as partner cards in the Commander decks.
Artemis is known for his skill at combat, so he would be a warrior that would be black with another color. Jarlaxle is also a skilled fighter, but he love of tricks and magic items would make him a better rogue. Jarlaxle would be a great blue and black creature built to mess with people, while Artemis would focus on aggressive attacking.
Minsc and Boo
Minsc is a character from the Baldur’s Gate video games. He has gained fame by being a funny character with tons of memes related to his pet Boo. He claims Boo is a “Miniature Giant Space Hamster” who is capable of intelligence and can communicate with him.
I would love for them to have Minsc and Boo as a flip card, no words can describe my joy at the idea of a Boo Commander deck. I can see Minsc as a green and red card, he is a violent barbarian but also has a soft side for animals.
Pikel and Ivan Bouldershoulder
Dwarven brothers, they’re mostly famous for Pikel being a rare dwarven druid. He even dyed his beard green and speaks with animals! It’ll be fun for them to appear on a card together, possibly red and green to represent the brothers’ different temperaments.
One of the most famous villains in D&D lore. He was a lich that eventually became a demi-god. When he was killed, he left behind his eye and hand that became insanely powerful magical artifacts.
I can see two artifact cards that can merge into a creature, similar to the Meld mechanic in Shadows over Innistrad. He would be a great zombie wizard commander, with focus on killing creatures and possibly benefiting from death. He could have a mechanic to resurrect himself, fitting his lich abilities.
Vecna’s main man. Kas had a sword gifted by Vecna that was eventually used to kill Vecna. Kas eventually became a vampire so we can expect him or his sword appearing. Maybe Kas would be a vampire with abilities that work with equipment? It would fit his lore, maybe have him tutor his sword similar to Nazahn, Revered Bladesmith.
Strahd von Zarovich
Another famous villain in D&D lore. He is one of the most powerful vampires and one of the main rulers of Ravenloft. Ravenloft is basically the equivalent of Innistrad, with gothic monsters and dark stories.
Strahd would make for an amazing mono-black vampire, though I can’t imagine what his abilities would be that would separate him from other legendary vampires we already have.
We have already seen artwork for beholder creatures, so it’ll make sense to have Xanathar appear. We might even get his goldfish in some artwork or flavor text. Xanathar would be a great red/blue/black legendary with random abilities for his eye lasers.
We might also see some of the famous adventurers in the Adventures in the Forgotten Realms Commander decks.
Artifacts of Lore
You can’t have a D&D game without cool magical loot. I’ve already mentioned Drizzt’s scimitars and Vecna’s body parts, but I expect equipment and artifacts to be very important in this set. We already have the legendary Vorpal Sword spoiled, as well as Portable Hole.
Here are some items I’m expecting us to see:
- Book of Exalted Deeds and Book of Vile Darkness – Both high end artifacts with tons of lore and super powerful abilities. I expect them to appear in at least flavor text.
- Random +1 weapons and armor – The basic loot every adventurer starts with. I can see some of these as common equipment that boost power or toughness.
- Sending Stones – Also a common item. Usually just lets you talk to someone far away, but I can see this as an artifact that lets you scry.
- Ring of Three Wishes – I expect the Wish spell to appear in the set somewhere, but I know this card was already printed in M14 so I can imagine a reprint.
- Cloak of Elvenkind – I expect some equipment that give hexproof, ward, or shroud that involve magic items that help stealth or evasion. Cloak of Elvenkind is the first item that comes to my mind due to it being so common and useful for players.
- Manual of Golems – There are multiple manuals that give cool effects, but one that lets you produce golem tokens fits the best in Magic the Gathering.
- Iron Flask – An item that exiles a creature temporarily, perfect for Magic. We’ve already got Portable Hole but I still think Iron Flask has a chance of getting printed.
- Ioun Stone – One of the more well-known items, Ioun Stones have multiple effects that can fit almost every player. Since there are 14 different Ioun Stones, each with its own ability, there is no way to predict what effects a card can have.
- Bag of Holding – We already got Bag of Holding in M20, so I can see them printing one of the other bags, such as Bag of Devouring. In D&D, if you put a Bag of Holding into another Bag of Holding, it creates a destructive black hole, so a more likely option is us seeing a board wipe that displays that happening.
- Immovable Rod – Another famous item, I can see this tapping creatures or preventing a creature from attacking/blocking.
- Gauntlets of Ogre Strength or Belt of Dwarvenkind – Both items greatly increase strength, so I see one of them appearing as an equipment that boosts power.
- Deck of Many Things – I can see this as a red chaos card, maybe a sorcery that has 6 random effects.
- Orb of Dragonkind – We’ve already seen a good amount of dragon support in spoiled cards. So I can see this as an artifact or instant that either tutors dragons or is used to steal dragons from opponents. I feel the steal dragons option is more likely due to Tiamat already tutoring dragons.
- Black Razor – A famous evil artifact, I expect it to be a black equipment similar to the Vorpal Sword.
- The Halfing Gem – The halfing gem is a jewel that Regis stole from a crime boss, and the book The Halfing’s Gem focuses on this story. The gem itself isn’t super important, but I can imagine it appearing as a mana rock or minor artifact.
- The Crystal Shard – A famous artifact that creates the plots of several Drizzt novels. It can create large crystal towers and manipulate minds, so it can likely appear as a card that steals creatures and possibly create artifact tokens of some sort.
You can’t have Dungeons and Dragons without dragons, and we’ve already been given an amazing one. Tiamat has already been spoiled, and she is a dragon and a god. I was wondering if they’ll print god cards, and I’m glad to see they are. I don’t expect the usual 5 gods of each color, but random colors similar to Kaldheim. Some gods I can expect us to see are:
- The Raven Queen – A strange entity that collects memories from mortals. She’d likely let you draw cards when creatures die or get sacrificed, since she is built around knowledge and death. I see her as a black and blue god, or possibly black and white. She could focus on stealing memories by making people discard or mill.
- Lolth – The evil goddess of the drow and spiders, I can see her making spider tokens or punishing players for playing creatures.
- Tyr – God of justice and law. He screams Azorius, so I expect a blue and white god that punishes players for attacking you.
- Moradin – One of the primary dwarven gods. I see him as possibly red and/or white, working on protecting creatures.
- Orcus – Demonic god of death and the undead. He will likely be some sort of undead tribal, working with either zombies or vampires.
- Bane – God of tyranny. I can see him working similar to other black and red gods with death triggers and making your opponents creatures die or get weaker.
- Mystra – Goddess of magic, I see her as a blue god that works with instants and sorceries.
- Lathander – God of the dawn. He has a lot of healing abilities so he will likely focus on preventing damage or protecting creatures by giving them ward or some other similar ability.
- Asmodeus – God of demons. I can see him as a demon tribal card, similar to Rakdos.
- Primus – Not quite a god but many see him as one. He controls the Modrons, machine creatures that represent order. He’ll be an amazing token generator. Since he is built for order and machines it would make sense for him to be white and possibly also blue.
Creature Types – Forgotten Realms Predictions
So we already see gods and dragons, but what other creature types can we expect? Obviously we can expect dwarves, elves, orcs, and humans since they already have strong support in previous sets.
We also have a new creature type spoiled, halfings. If they’re going to create halfings as a new type, I can see them doing the same with other popular D&D races such as gnomes, dragonborn, and tieflings.
It’ll be interesting to see if tieflings will be considered devils or a separate creature type. Dragonborn could also be a mix of dragon and other creature types.
One spoiled card is a great help on what we can expect for monster types. Power Word Kill can kill any creature that isn’t an angel, demon, devil, or dragon.
This card looks exactly like Victim of Night, a card from Innistrad that can kill any creature that isn’t a vampire, werewolf, or zombie. Since Innistrad obviously had tons of those creature types, we can expect angels, demons, devils, and dragons to appear in this set.
We have a new Ravenloft book coming out soon so I expect a good amount of ghosts, zombies, and vampires to get people excited for the new D&D content. I’ve seen several people excited for lich cards, so it’ll be interesting what zombie tribal cards we will get.
Beholders and More New Types?
We’ve already seen artwork for a beholder, but what type of card can we expect? I’m picturing a creature with multiple colors and abilities, to represent their many eye abilities. I expect beholders to be Grixis (red/blue/black) since those colors fit their nightmarish origins the best.
Beholders have different attacks and abilities to go with each eye, and they activate them randomly. We can expect a creature with multiple abilities that can trigger at random when it attacks. Beholders are also known for having their central eye cancel magic effects. This means we could see a beholder that can counter abilities or have some magic protection such as hexproof or ward.
Some other creatures we can expect to see:
- Gelatinous cube. It would be a fun creature to have deathtouch.
- Elementals and genasi.
- Goblins and bugbears.
- Drow and duergar.
- Kobolds. They’ll likely have abilities that work with trap cards due to kobolds being famous trap makers.
- Lycanthropes such as wererats or werebears. It would be nice to get another werewolf legendary for red and green.
- Mind flayers, most likely focused on stealing creatures or mill.
- Rust monsters that destroy artifacts.
- D&D has a large variety of giants, and we have a basic land spoiled that mentions them. I expect several giants for blue and red, possibly green and white as well.
Can’t have D&D without Magic
We have already seen Power Word Kill, but what other spells can we expect in this set? We can likely see a reprint of Fireball. Revivify would be an amazing white resurrect spell. We could see Eldritch Blast as a black version of shock. Magic Missile is also a good candidate for direct damage, most likely being able to split between targets.
There are several healing and buff spells that could work, such as Cure Wounds, Healing Word, and Bless. These would be perfect spells for white that’ll buff a creature’s toughness until end of turn.
Hold Person and Hold Monster are both good choices for spells that tap creatures, but they would both be very limited on what creature types they can target.
I also expect Sleep to be reprinted. We can likely see Charm Person or similar spells appear to steal opponents’ creatures.
The Forgotten Realms is Larger than you Think
Many people forget that most books just focus on the Sword Coast, and major cities such as Neverwinter and Waterdeep. Faerûn is extremely large, and is linked to many different planes of existence.
It’ll be overwhelming for them to include them all in one set, but I expect flavor text and lands to mention many different areas. Ravenloft, Icewind Dale, and Chult would be perfect for rare lands, as well as the cities I mentioned. Ravenloft would be a great land for undead, and Chult is primarily known for dinosaurs and undead, so hopefully some dinosaur cards or a land that makes tokens.
We can also expect planes such as the Shadowfell or the elemental planes to appear as lands (or they might get a mention in flavor text). We already saw basic lands with flavor text, so maybe they’ll include lands with artwork of other planes? The swamp that was spoiled already looks like it was tainted by the Shadowfell.
There is also the Yawning Portal Inn. A famous place that even got a whole D&D book dedicated to the stories told within its walls. I can see the inn appear as a land, but I can also see a set of saga cards dedicated to the adventures told within the inn. It would be cool if there was a land too that worked with saga cards.
Speaking of sagas, I expect them to make a big return. There are tons of stories in the Forgotten Realms that Wizards can make into sagas. They could focus on plots of books, or major events such as the Spellplague or the many deaths/births of gods.
We Talked About Dragons, but Where are the Dungeons?
I expect dungeons to be represented by a return of trap cards. They were first printed in Zendikar, and they’d be perfect for this set.
I expect them to appear for all colors and likely represent famous dungeons such as Tomb of Horrors and White Plume Mountain in the flavor text.
Your Adventures in the Forgotten Realms Predictions
Do you have a favorite character or class that you want to see represented? Comment below on what you hope to see in this set!
You can find all current Adventures of the Forgotten Realms spoilers here.
In case you want to learn more about Dungeons and Dragons, here’s some articles that might be interesting to you:
Until next time, and may all of your favorite Forgotten Realms predictions come true.