Earlier today, Wizards previewed the vast majority of the rare and mythic cards from its upcoming Ixalan expansion set. It was an unprecedented show of transparency from the usually silent organization resulting from the unusually massive leak of Ixalan cards in June. Just before Grand Prix Vegas, a user posted an entire uncut foil sheet of Ixalan rares and mythic rares to reddit. Now, we know the story of how it got there.

Scott Kelly, Wizards Vice President of Creative and Production Studios, shared as much of the details as he legally could, given the court case is still pending. The short story is that a temporary employee at one of the facilities where Magic is printed allegedly took a stack of foil uncut sheets, evaded security, and left the building.

After the alleged theft, the uncut sheets in question appeared for sale on various websites. The act had been caught on security cameras and numerous community members informed Wizards of the sheets being sold. The fraud team leapt into action (it sounds more dramatic than it is but not by much perhaps) and soon, with the help of local law enforcement, the property was recovered and the suspect was arrested pending their trial.

That all brings us to today, a few weeks from the beginning of Ixalan previews at HasCon, and a very unexpected decision by Wizards of the Coast. 48 of the rares and mythic rares that were on the leaked uncut sheet have been previewed officially over at the mothership (some were left out because they were unreadable).

In addition, Matt Tabak has the mechanics article for Ixalan, and it’s a doozy. I expect you’ll hear more about it in the coming days and weeks.

For now though, we want to commend Wizards of the Coast on this unprecedented level of transparency. Everyone in the community takes previews very seriously, whether or not you’re happy when they come out. A lot of people put a lot of work into Magic and it’s unfortunate when that effort is undermined by the theft and release of cards months ahead of time.

While we obviously respect that Wizards can’t divulge everything in situations like this, we’re hoping that this is a sign of things to come, rather than a one-time departure from business-as-usual.

David McCoy also contributed to this article.

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