The new Magic: The Gathering Secret Lair sub-brand has been revealed, and it will gather cards together in small collections centered around unique themes while also giving them eye-popping new art that isn't always the style that traditionally fits the game's wider universe and lore. Magic: The Gathering has been growing in popularity thanks to the successful launch of MTG Arena, which has drawn tens of thousands of players into competitive play, and has been complementing that new broader appeal with product lines that pay homage to demographics that might traditionally feel a little left out from the game's art direction and style.
Magic: The Gathering is still reeling from a tumultuous couple months on the game's competitive scene, during which the playerbase has experienced several Standard bannings - including the face of the newest set, Throne of Eldraine, in Oko, Thief of Crowns. Magic: The Gathering Pioneer, a brand new format, was also launched around a month ago, creating an entirely new landscape for competitive players to explore while also offering more casual deckbuilders a chance to shake things up with their creativity. Throughout these changes, though, it has felt as though the game was growing in a positive manner, and fans were excited to find out what Magic: The Gathering Secret Lair would be when Wizards teased the product recently.
As it turns out, Magic: The Gathering Secret Lair will be totally unlike anything else Wizards of the Coast has ever released for the game, according to a deep dive preview from IGN. It's something of a blend between the crossover cards the company has released in the past - Transformers and, more recently, My Little Pony - using the art styles that those properties can afford while applying it to pre-existing cards already played in the game. Secret Lair is being called a Drop Series, a collection of seven different drops that will go live on the official Wizards website starting December 2 and ranging between $29.99 and $39.99 USD. Magic: The Gathering Secret Lair will provide unique sets centered around specific themes that reprint cards and give them bold new art directions, as evidenced by the first reveal, OMG KITTIES!, which transforms several pre-existing cards into adorable kittens.
The cards will be tournament legal and will span a wide range of choices, including Commander staples and more casual cards. Wizards of the Coast announced all seven collectible set names, too, and some of them will be extremely appealing: Bitterblossom Dreams, Eldraine Wonderland, Restless in Peace, Seeing Visions, <explosion sounds>, Kaleidoscope Killers, and OMG KITTIES! will comprise the entire collection, which will release one drop per day over December 2-December 9, with the option to purchase all seven sets in a bundle on one day as well.
More card art will be revealed in the coming days and, according to Wizards, not all of it will be as cute-focused as OMG KITTIES!, meaning it will appeal to a wide range of fans. It's a big step forward for Magic: The Gathering as a property, though - appealing to fans who want more than traditional fantasy art from the game will surely make a lot of players happy, and it's a perfect holiday gift idea for those who are particularly enamored with any of the themes on offer in the set. Hopefully, more reprint strategies like this one - tailor-made to appeal to wide swaths of fans, but with the potential to even get competitive players interested - will characterize 2020 for a company that's still managing the growth of the world's most popular tabletop card game.