Last updated on September 14, 2022
Fireball | Illustration by Xavier Ribeiro
We’re back in the world of the Forgotten Realms, this time in one of the most iconic cities on the continent of Faerûn. Baldur’s Gate isn’t only the setting for a video game franchise, it’s now the latest Commander Legends set.
We got some morsels of info from Wizards in late March, but we still don’t know everything yet. We know that this set is designed for Drafts and its format will be identical to the previous Commander Legends, as well as that some cards will be implemented into a Draft-focused Alchemy set called Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate.
There’s more to explore, though. So let’s dive right into everything there is to know about Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate!
Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate Basic Information
Wand of Wonder | Illustration by Xavier Ribeiro
|Number of Cards||361|
|Mechanics||Planeswalker commanders, dice rolling, dungeons/initiative, background cards|
|Previews start||May 16, 2022|
|Available on Draftsim's draft simulator||May 27, 2022|
|Paper release date||June 10, 2022|
About the Set: The Story
Ancient Brass Dragon | Illustration by Johan Grenier
We don’t have any clues on whether or not there will be a story for this set as of yet. Based on how Adventures in the Forgotten Realms went there will likely be no story at all. The theme and setting of Baldur’s Gate are probably going to be all we get.
Planeswalker commanders is a mechanic that we see, but it’s one of the more fun ones out there. It’s a relatively simple rule allowing planeswalkers to operate as a commander for your deck. Most of the previous iterations were mono-colored planeswalkers, but we already know that the set features Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes as well as Elminster and Tasha, the Witch Queen.
Myriad is a returning mechanic that creates copies of your attacking creatures which enter tapped and attacking other, non-defending opponents. It’s an excellent multiplayer mechanic because it allows for creature decks to avoid kingmaking scenarios, or purposefully engage with them in order to play politics or create periods for player interaction.
Creatures copied with myriad are just token copies of the original. They do not carry any benefits like +1/+1 counters or auras/equipment. It’s important to note, also, that the tokens enter tapped and attacking, which means there aren’t any triggers from attackers being declared.
The “initiative” mechanic is a mechanic similar to monarch, in that it is awarded from specific cards or taken by dealing combat damage to the player with the initiative. The player who has the initiative ventures into the Undercity dungeon on their upkeep as opposed to drawing a card on their end step (like with monarch).
In Forgotten Realms, venturing into any dungeon was always worse than simply drawing a card. The Undercity dungeon, however, looks to be a bit more promising. It tutors a land out immediately, with increasingly potent rewards the deeper you travel.
Scrying for 2, drawing a card, fetching a basic, and flipping a creature from the top of your deck into play with +1/+1 counters and hexproof are all things that I’d love to do—and are much stronger than some of the other rooms from AFR (such as draining for one life).
Background is a mechanic similar to partner that allows you to choose an additional color for your commander deck without having to replace your commander. They’re a type of enchantment that, in addition to giving your commander some kind of buff, gives your deck an additional legal color to play around with.
Backgrounds are cards that start in your deck, meaning you must announce your additional color at the start of the game. Some commanders, however, will have abilities that allow you to start with the enchantment in the command zone, ready for play. The mechanic is very similar to partner. It allows for some mix and matching of mechanics and colors to achieve a color identity and commander that works for specific themes or strategies.
The only requirement to use a background enchantment is that your commander must have the background keyword specifically. You can’t just tack on a background card to your pre-existing Thalia, Guardian of Thraben stax deck.
Adventures are a returning mechanic from Throne of Eldraine like Brazen Borrower. They’re nonland permanent cards that also have spells within them that can be cast first. You can cast the spell within the spell that’s featured in the pages of the oracle text, which exiles the card to be played as a permanent later.
While the party mechanic took a significant role in Adventures into the Forgotten Realms, it was all but exempt from being featured in Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate. The mechanic is featured solely on Nalia de’Arnise, and provides a board-wide buff if your party is full.
Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate Card Gallery
Rulebook Art Treatment
Forgotten Realms gave us a new art treatment unique to the D&D cards. This alternate art and frame treatment offers a look reminiscent of D&D stat pages with some epic black-and-white art and a stunning red background.
The allied Battlebond lands are back! We haven’t gotten a chance to see these since the original Battlebond set back in 2018. All five are back and we’ve got a welcome reprint of Reflecting Pool too, making drafting Baldur’s Gate buttery-smooth.
Draft boosters offer a pack of 16 cards that’s specifically built for Limited play. You can buy individual packs or a box of 36 boosters, and Wizards offers buy-a-box promos with exclusive cards if you opt for the bigger purchase. The Baldur's Gate draft boosters feature art of an as-of-yet unknown githyanki character.
- 3 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate MTG Draft Boosters
- 20 Magic cards per CLB Draft Booster
- 1–4 cards of rarity Rare or higher in every pack
- At least 2 Legendary cards and 1 Traditional Foil card in every pack
- Grab 3 boosters, pick 2 cards at a time, and build a 60-card Commander deck
The bread-and-butter of set products. You can buy a box of 30 packs instead of individual boosters with their own buy-a-box promo as incentive. The Baldur's Gate set boosters feature alternate art of Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes.
These boosters are aimed at players looking to open packs without drafting them. They have a higher average number of rares than their draft counterparts and also have cards from The List, a pre-curated selection of varied cards from across Magic’s long history.
- 18 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate Set Boosters
- 15 Magic: The Gathering cards per Set Booster—the best MTG booster to open just for fun
- 1 Foil-Etched card, 1 Traditional Foil, and 1 Art Card in every pack
- 1–7 cards of rarity Rare or higher in every CLB Set Booster
- At least 3 Legendary cards in every pack
These packs are for the collectors out there, hence the name. Collector boosters are the product for you if you’re looking for unique and aesthetic cards to add to your collection. You can also get a box of these instead of buying individual packs, just like the set and draft boosters. The Baldur's Gate collector boosters feature stylized art of a dragon.
- 15 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate cards + 1 foil token
- 2 Foil-Etched + 10 Traditional Foil cards in every pack
- 6 cards of rarity Rare or higher in every pack—including 1 Foil-Etched Legendary R/M
- At least 3 Legendary cards in every pack
- Collect the coolest MTG Commander cards from the world of Dungeons & Dragons
Prerelease packs are available during prerelease events. The idea behind this product is to give new players a look at the set and what to expect from it along with some goodies to whet your appetite.
Battle for Baldur’s Gate Bundle
Set bundles are what you want if the set really speaks to you. This has everything you need to get started in a new format, add to your collection, or enjoy a new set with your friends! The Baldur's Gate bundles sport the same art as the set boosters.
- 8 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate MTG Set Boosters
- 1 foil alt-art promo card—Wand of Wonder
- 40 basic land cards (20 foil + 20 nonfoil)
- Spindown life counter + card storage box
- Open a box full of epic MTG Commander cards and accessories from the world of D&D
Each of the four Baldur's Gate EDH decks will feature a 2-card “collector booster sample.” These are small, collector booster packs with two cards in each pack. One card is a single rare or mythic that can also be found in conventional Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate collector boosters, which has a 20 percent chance to be a foil. The other card is a guaranteed foil common or uncommon.
Here are the four precons we’re getting with this set:
- Party Time ()
- Mind Flayarrrs ()
- Draconic Dissent ()
- Exit from Exile ()
- Bundle of all 4 Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate Commander Decks—Party Time, Mind Flayarrrs, Draconic Descent, and Exit from Exile
- Minimal packaging for reduced waste
- Includes 4 Collector Booster Sample Packs (total of 8 cards)—1 with each deck
- All 4 ready-to-play MTG decks contain 100 Magic cards (3 traditional foil + 97 nonfoil)
- Each deck comes with 1 foil-etched Display Commander, 10 tokens, 1 life tracker + 1 deck box
Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate
Alongside the paper set is a supplemental digital-only set for Alchemy called Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate. The set features 250 new cards for both Alchemy and Historic (some of which are admittedly pretty awesome), which also include some of the new mechanics, legends, and spells from the Battle for Baldur’s Gate set.
Closing the Campaign
Reflecting Pool | Illustration by Alayna Danner
I’m excited for Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate. As a longtime D&D fan and MTG player I’m thrilled to have both of my favorite games intertwined. While I’m not a fan of a new Alchemy set, I’m eager to see if Wizards takes this new set in a direction similar to recent ones. AFR was a blast and I hope this is too.
Are you excited to see Baldur’s Gate? What kind of mechanics are you hoping to get in this set? Tell me in the comments below or over on Draftsim’s Discord.
As for me, I’m going to play some D&D. Stay safe, and wash your hands!
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