Magic: the gathering arena gets a new Alchemy format that will take full advantage of the digital nature of the game. Alchemy will follow the same defined rotation as the standard. However, Alchemy will regularly rebalance the cards. The format also uses the digital-only supplemental maps that use the digital-only game mechanics introduced in Historic via Jumpstart: Historical horizons. Alchemy launches next week with Magic: the gathering arenathe December 9 update, featuring Alchemy: Innistrad in the digital game. The first Alchemy set includes 63 new cards completing the latest Magic: The Gathering expansion, Innistrad: Crimson Wish.
The plan for Wizards of the Coast is to release an additional new Alchemy set four to six weeks after the release of each new prime set. Each card in the Alchemy set will feature a digital mechanic. The purpose of these supplements is to temper overpowered archetypes and stimulate others who are just a little afraid of being viable in competitive play. With Alchemy, Wizards of the Coast hopes to solve a problem born out of MTG Arenathe popularity of. The new standard formats are “resolved” (the power levels of the archetypes are definitively established and an apparent “better deck” appears) faster than ever. Once resolved, the format may become obsolete while players wait for the next set. Alchemy offers a more dynamic metagame for those who are fed up with the current Standard game.
Wizards of the Coast makes it clear that Alchemy is not replacing Standard in Arena. Instead, from now on, MTG Arena will divide its formats into two categories. Those with paper analogs, like Standard, will stay in sync with their tabletop counterparts. This rule applies to Standard and all future traditional formats added to MTG Arena, like Pioneer.
Any format where digital-only game elements and rebalanced cards are legal will be referred to as a Live format. In addition to the new Alchemy format, MTG ArenaHistoric’s first exclusive digital format has already become the premier Live format with Good start: Historical horizons ” introduction. From Alchemy: Innistradthe introduction of, Historic will use the rebalanced versions of the maps where appropriate. Wizards of the Coast is also “actively watching” the application of Alchemy’s direct rebalance strategy to Historic, but first wants to see how things go with the new format. For now, History’s list of bans and suspensions remains in place, but that may change in the future.
Alchemy will also see cards rebalanced instead of being banned. Such a rebalancing would be a logistical nightmare in the print industry, requiring knowledge of extensive errata. It’s much easier in MTG Arenathe digital environment of. Going forward, any cards banned in Standard will be rebalanced and will continue to be legal in Alchemy. (Despite this, players will still receive wild cards as compensation for newly banned cards already in their collections.)
However, rebalancing will be much more common in Alchemy than sporadic table bans. Magic. Currently, Wizards of the Coast estimates that Alchemy’s rebalance will take place on a monthly basis. With the launch of Alchemy: Innistrad next week some of the most powerful and frequently played cards in the current standard format – Esika’s Chariot; Golden Hope Dragon; the Epiphany of Alrund; Haven without a face; Aspiring Luminarch; and the previously banned Omnath, Locus of Creation (which also becomes legal again in Historic) – are rebalanced in Alchemy (the standard versions of each map will remain unchanged, and owning one version of the map means you own the other as a good).
But rebalancing won’t always be about softening the dominant cards. Other cards that haven’t been played much may receive power increases. A card upgraded with Alchemy: Innistrad is Pylath, sculptor of the world.
Alchemy won’t be just a casual or non-meta format, either. While firm plans are not yet in place, Alchemy is on the table as a format for future Magic: The Gathering tournaments organized on MTG Arena.
What do you think of MTG Arenais the new Alchemy format? Let us know what you think in the comments section. Alchemy launches on Magic: the gathering arena December 9.