Magic: The Gathering will officially return to publishing its story early next month with the launch of an ebook focused on the game’s newest set, Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths. It will launch on April 7, according to the book’s Amazon page.
Magic has a deep story that’s spanned all three decades of the game’s existence. Each set brings a new arc for the game’s large cast of heroes and villains, whether it means political intrigue on the city-plane of Ravnica, a pirate adventure on the high seas of Ixalan, or a gothic ghost story on Innistrad.
The story reached a pinnacle last year with War of the Spark, a set featuring the climax of a years-long arc featuring a band of heroes known as the Gatewatch against one of the game’s most notable villains, the dragon Nicol Bolas. The game’s designer, Wizards of the Coast, leveled up its story as well over the course of this arc, moving from an online weekly lore blog to several novels penned by notable authors like Brandon Sanderson, Greg Weisman, and Kate Elliot.
Fan feedback for several of these novels was less than enthusiastic, however, with many citing a decrease in writing quality, lack of character consistency, and several significant retcons of both the game’s world and, in particular, a popular romance.
This feedback ultimately resulted in the cancellation of plans to produce a novel for the Theros: Beyond Death set. Instead, Wizards opted to tell the set’s story through a combination of card spotlights and a brief story summary.
The launch of the Ikoria ebook will be a return to form for Magic and Wizards. The planeswalker Vivien Reid, a member of the Gatewatch, has been featured in promo art for the set and will likely play a major role in the novel.