Today is a big day for Magic the Gathering fans. The long-running card game is getting its 80th expansion pack known as Ravnica Allegiance. Technically speaking, Ravnica Allegiance’s release date is set for January 25th, at least as far as physical MTG is concerned. However, Magic the Gathering Arena players can use the new set starting today. Ravnica Allegiance comes alongside a new update that also introduces duplicate protection, reward changes, preseason changes, and more.
New Ravnica Set Means New Guilds and Mechanics
But first things first. The main highlight of Update 0.11.00 is, of course, the brand new set. Ravnica Allegiance ads a grand total of 273 new cards to MTG Arena. In addition, there are also five new guilds along with unique mechanics for each of them. The guilds in question are known as Rakdos (red + black), Orzhov (white + black), Simic (blue + green), Gruul (red + green), and Azorius (white + blue). Just in case you’re not familiar with Magic the Gathering, the color combinations in the brackets represent the types of mana used by these guilds.
As far as the storyline is concerned, Ravnica Allegiance picks up where Guilds of Ravnica left off. Nicol Bolas continues his assault on Ravnica while the Gatewatch is doing its best to thwart his evil plans. Not a lot to go on, but the story doesn’t really affect the gameplay so don’t worry about it. What you’re probably more interested in are the new guild mechanics, which are Spectacle for Rakdos, Afterlife for Orzhov, Adapt for Simic, Riot for Gruul, and Addendum for Azorius. You can find more information on how the new Ravnica Allegiance mechanics work right here.
A Better System to Complete Your Collection
In addition to new cards, guilds, and mechanics, Update 0.11.00 is also adding something called duplicate protection. Duplicate protection is a new system set up by the MTG Arena devs to ensure that players get fewer duplicate cards from now on. This system only affects Rare and Mythic Rare cards. The devs have a more complete description on how duplicate protection works over on the official website but the basic gist is that players are now more likely to receive Rares and Mythics that they have less than four copies of. From time to time, however, players might receive gems instead.
Speaking of changes, the in-game reward system is also getting a bit of an overhaul. More specifically, the reward system involving individual card rewards (ICRs). ICRs now grant players gems if they receive a new card that they already have four copies of. Again, this only applies to Rare and Mythic cards. Receiving a new Common/Uncommon card that you already have four copies of will not grant any gems but will count towards the Vault progress instead.
Ravnica Allegiance Schedule
Ravnica Allegiance packs are available in the store starting today. The only new draft mode currently in-game is RNA Sealed, with Traditional scheduled to arrive tomorrow. Meanwhile, on January 25th a special Ravnica Constructed event will open followed by the RNA Ranked Draft a week later on February 1st. The second preseason of Magic the Gathering Arena kicks off January 31st.