Last updated on October 9, 2023
Captivating Crossroads | Illustration by Yeong-Hao Han
You never know what to expect with Alchemy nowadays. Will we get a full set? Will it be 30 cards that are all vaguely similar to the main set? Will we get anything at all? Your guess is as good as mine.
No guessing necessary this time around, though! Wilds of Eldraine gets your standard Alchemy release just over a month after the main set's debut. The set brings 30 new cards to the digital-exclusive format on MTG Arena, and they’re all a bit familiar. There aren’t any brand-new mechanics in this drop, but there are some interesting interactions at the intersection of new Eldraine mechanics and digital-only ones like conjure, seek, or perpetually.
Let’s dive into the details now!
Alchemy: Eldraine Basic Information
Second Little Pig | Illustration by Josiah Jo Cameron
|Set Code||A24, Y24, YWOE|
|Number of Cards||30|
|Rarities||10 uncommons, 15 rares, 5 mythic rares|
|Mechanics||Perpetually, Boons, Starting Intensity, Conjure, Spellbook, Seek|
|Previews start||October 7, 2023|
|Full gallery available||October 9, 2023|
|Release on MTG Arena||October 10, 2023|
|Available on Arena Tutor||TBA|
About the Set
Alchemy: Eldraine is the digital bonus release to the main set, Wilds of Eldraine, and it's meant to complement the Alchemy format and established story. It includes 30 new cards that apply many of the digital-only mechanics in the themes, mechanics, and abilities established in WOE.
The set is pretty similar to the average Alchemy release. We've got a handful of new cards in each color, plenty of gold cards to go around, and a sprinkling of digital-only mechanics to otherwise normal cards. This iteration had some of the least marketing of all Alchemy sets that we've seen. Aside from a release date and day-before-release spoiling during coverage of the Arena Open, there wasn't much else from WotC this time.
Alchemy: Eldraine Mechanics
There aren’t any new mechanics in Alchemy: Eldraine. That doesn’t mean it’s just more of the same, though! Since this is a digital-only release, many of the Alchemy mechanics you know and love are getting mixed around with things like bargain.
Take a look at Talion's Throneguard. It’s a simple flier that bounces something when it ETBs. If you bargain it, you get to perpetually increase the cost of that card in its owner’s hand. This combines the bounce effect of many blue faeries with the hand-disruptive effects of many white and black cards. Usually, you’d need to bounce it to the hand and then hit it with another effect to exile it and increase the cost.
Captivating Crossroads is an interesting design. It’s a tapped land, but only if you were the starting player! This reminds me of the temporary game mode in September that had the starting player’s first land enter the battlefield tapped. It’s probably a bit too poor to seriously play outside of 3/4/5-color decks, but I appreciate the experimentation!
Alchemy: Eldraine Card Gallery
- Cerise, Slayer of Fear
- Dedicated Dollmaker
- The Conundrum of Bowls
- Paths of Tuinvale
- Talion's Throneguard
- Tome of Gadwick
- Dunbarrow Revivalist
- Underbridge Warlock
- Heir to Dragonfire
- Victory of the Pyrohammer
- Draconic Debut
- A Golden Opportunity
- Hex, Kellan's Companion
- Swine Rebellion
- Accident-Prone Apprentice
- Drover of the Swine
- First Little Pig
- Grow Old Together
- High Fae Prankster
- Jewel Mine Overseer
- Outfitted Jouster
- Porcine Portent
- Second Little Pig
- Steady Tortoise
- Stormkeld Curator
- Syr Joshua and Syr Saxon
- Third Little Pig
- Captivating Crossroads
Drover of the Swine
Drover of the Swine is one of the set’s only mythics. It’s a 5/5 for that has you choose one on ETB. You can either conjure out a card from the three pigs spellbook or reanimate three different boars from the graveyard! I like this way of designing choices on cards. The first is always what you’re going to start with, and it makes duplicate copies of this card great when you’re ahead or behind. It also builds up what was a sort of missed opportunity in the main Wilds of Eldraine set. How were the three little piggies not included originally!?
Jewel Mine OverseerJewel Mine Overseer
Jewel Mine Overseer is a 3/3 human noble that conjures up the seven dwarves onto the top of your library. Each dwarf draws you the next one in line after you play it, and the Overseer exiles the top on your upkeep to get things rolling further. Overall, I’m not totally blown away by this card. Dwarves aren’t the best cards in the world to play, and Boros typically wants a bit more explosive power. This is already near the top end of the curve for most decks.
Heir to the DragonfireHeir to the Dragonfire
There’s just something so familiar about Heir to the Dragonfire. It’s a small red creature that can get infinitely bigger if you’ve got the mana to pay for it, and it has dragon synergies that make it that much stronger. All around, it’s a great 2-drop that gets better and can perform both as an attacker and blocker quite well. Cool!
The set doesn’t come out until October 10th, so we don’t know exactly what products it’ll be available in. If it’s anything like previous Alchemy releases, I’d expect the packs to be available individually in addition to some kind of bundle including various cosmetics. The current Mastery Pass isn’t set to end until early/mid-November, so I don’t expect any new mastery pass to be included in this release.
Third Little Pig | Illustration by Josiah Jo Cameron
That wraps up all the information for Alchemy: Eldraine! I’ll admit, all of the releases recently have gotten somewhat overwhelming. Between main sets, Secret Lair collaborations, bonus Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth content, and now a new Alchemy set, I don’t know which to focus on!
What do you think about this new Alchemy release? Are you a fan of the format? Are you already brewing some new decks with some of the new cards? Let me know in the comments below, or come talk about the format (or even Magic in general!) in the official Draftsim Discord!
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