Ahoy planeswalkers! I know I’ve been away for a while, but, well, I can’t resist a trailer! After watching the trailer for War of the Spark, I’ve got a Vorthos scoop on what to expect from the set that’s so hot I had to share.

One of the questions that has lingered in my mind throughout the lead-up to this year’s third set, the culmination of the Gatewatch versus Bolas storyline that dominated the last few years in Magic’s storytelling, was how a great planeswalker showdown could be captured mechanically in this set. This showdown has a lot of moving parts. The Gatewatch has eight major players on their team already (Jace, Gideon, Chandra, Teferi, Ajani, Jaya, Karn, and Vraska), with a returning Nissa likely and Liliana now a vital ally bound to Bolas. Ajani will be bringing a few friends to join their cause, and the Gatewatch has also made a few new friends of their own who could conceivably show up (Samut especially has major cause to join the fight against Bolas). How can this large army of planeswalkers be captured in the set, however, when the most planeswalkers we’ve seen in a single set is six?

A few ideas have been kicked around. Mark Rosewater chronically fields questions about rare planeswalkers (rather than mythic), and planeswalkers with a lower power level could allow greater representation in the final set. But Rosewater consistently waves off this idea as creating an unnecessary design challenge just to solve it. A return of masterpieces could also be a good solution, packing some extra potential value into the set, although the Mythic Editions of Guilds of Ravnica and Ravnica Allegiance seem to have taken that collectible special edition space.

But then, the teaser for War of the Spark dropped, and I saw the answer. The beautiful stained glass windows, seemingly meant to represent the game’s pantheon of planeswalkers. The chandelier full of lit candles that slowly snuff out until only one remains. This points to something that would be the perfect mechanical fit for War of the Spark:

We are getting de-sparked, legendary creature versions of a whole lot of planeswalkers.

Of the forty-four planeswalkers featured on Magic’s main planeswalkers site, four are currently dead (Elspeth, Venser, Xenagos, and Freyalise), and two more have an unclear relationship with the current canon (Mu Yanling and Jiang Yanggu from the Global Series). That leaves thirty-eight planeswalkers, and Sorin being stuck in a rock and Koth being the Phyrexians’ prisoner would bring us to exactly thirty-six—the same number of stained glass windows and candles seen in the trailer. Treating Rowan and Will Kenrith as a single window would even let Sorin come join the fun. (It’s hard to get a good look at every window, but those that are clear are based on art of known planeswalkers.)

This would solve so many problems with regard to story/gameplay synergy. It would allow many planeswalkers to get cards in the climactic set without having to flood it with actual planeswalker cards. It also plays well with Dominaria’s “legendary creatures matter” subtheme, potentially giving those cards a boost as Dominaria enters its last half-year in Standard.

This would also be dang cool for Commander. Most of the characters we’ve met through planeswalker cards cannot be generals in the game’s most popular casual format. Of the surviving pleaneswalkers featured on Magic’s planeswalker site, only eleven can be commanders. Gideon, Jace, Nissa, Chandra, and Liliana have their transform versions, and Bolas has both a transform version and his original Legends appearance. Teferi was printed as a creature in Time Spiral, plus he has a Commander printing with the general-granting ability, as do Saheeli, Nahiri, Daretti, and Ob Nixilis. War of the Spark could easily give us newly-minted commanders freeing EDH aficionados to build decks around their favorite planeswalkers.

Making a mass de-sparking of planeswalkers central to the set’s story on page and cardboard also fits really well with key story beats that came up in Ixalan and Dominaria. First, Azor in Rivals of Ixalan brought the de-sparking of a planeswalker back to the forefront—a mechanic of how planeswalking works that had not been prominent since New Phyrexia, if I am not mistaken. Then, with Teferi on Dominaria, the transport and absorption of a spark also found its way into the story. This could well have been the set up for the large-scale transfer of sparks that seems likely to be coming at the climax of Bolas’s grand plan.

So, there you have it. Want to see Ajani as a legendary creature? Adult Chandra? Dack? Ashiok? Tamiyo? Just hang in there for a couple more months; it sure seems like this is where the latest trailer says that we are heading.

Beck Holden lives in the greater Boston area. He enjoys drafting, brewing for Standard, and playing 8-Rack in Modern.

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