The original Ravnica block was one of the most beloved and powerful efforts present in the pantheon of Magic: the Gathering expansions. The amount of hype that was surrounding this set was incredible, but this first look back at Ravnica lives up to the hype. For those that were not playing during the original Ravnica block, the plane is one massive city, replete with a set of 10 guilds that vie for control. The Return to Ravnica expansion focuses on five of these guilds – Azorius (blue/white), Golgari (black/green), Izzet (blue/red), Rakdos (red/black) and Selesnya (green/white).
Each of these guilds has a power (a keyword) that fits into the storyline. For example, the Azorius are those that dictate the law of Ravnica and can detain – ensuring that a permanent cannot attack, block, or use its activated abilities until the next turn of its controller. This new keyword works well with Forecast, Azorius’ keyword from Dissention; the scavenge ability for Golgari (pay an alternative cost to add +1/+1 counters equal to the power of a card exiled from a graveyard) Two planeswalkers – Jace, Architect of Thought and Vraska the Unseen – have created ripples through all variants of Magic: the Gathering. Vraska the Unseen’s ultimate (largest costing ability) forces players to use all stops to kill three 1/1 assassins that, if unblocked, will cause the defending player to lose the game. Jace, Architect of Thought contains a similarly-earthshaking ultimate, which allows a player to tutor two cards – one from their deck and one from their opponent’s – and cast them without needing the mana to do so.
Watch out for the two concluding sets of the block. Gatecrash is slated to release in February, 2013 and will focus on the remainder of the guilds. The third set – codenamed “Sinker” – will unite the two sets of guilds.
Return to Ravnica / Magic: the Gathering Expansion / http://www.wizards.com