Free For Some: Magic 2015’s Garruk Expansion Out

Nice deck, DOLT.

Hey gang, it’s your pal Alice or, as you can call me, Part of the Problem. Magic 2015‘s mini-expansion Garruk’s Revenge launched this week and I bought it without thinking, like the compulsive wizard I try desperately not to be. I had known that it added a new mini-campaign and extra cards but didn’t really look into it before forking out £3.99. That’s me: Part of the Problem.

The joke’s on me. Had I been more thoughtful, better informed, I would’ve noticed I had it anyway. The DLC’s free to anyone who had bought virtual packs of cards or the Complete Bundle, see. (Look, I bought one single pack as professional research, all right?) Note that I’m a giant wally.

As for the expansion itself, it adds 51 new cards and a new mini-campaign. This is a short one, with four proper duels and a handful of random ‘exploration’ battles. On your first run you’re forced to play with Garruk’s deck, an uncustomisable wodge of beefy creatures with the neat trick of splashing in more and more black magic along the campaign. It’s a neat trick, but perhaps one worth £3.99. I suspect those new cards are the main draw anyway, for multiplayer deckbuilders.

Making this free for certain folks is Wizards of the Coast’s apology for their microtransaction foolishness. At launch, certain cards could only be unlocked by buying ‘Premium’ booster packs – ten cards for £1.49 – or the ‘complete’ bundle. This was, of course, a gross idea. So they changed it, making those cards unlockable by winning multiplayer games, and promising compensation. Though loading the game would pop up a message letting folks know if the expansion was free for them, if you hadn’t opened it before buying or seen the warning on Steam (I’d swear it wasn’t there!), the store would unusually still let you buy the DLC. That’s the thing I did. Good job, me.

7 Comments

  1. padger says:

    So the lesson here is… it’s great when companies mess up their launches?

  2. gmillar says:

    I never really like the game Magic, but I would love to play an RPG set in that world.

    • Taerdin says:

      Shandalar?

      • Dilapinated says:

        Shandalar was so fantastic.

        • Banyan says:

          +1. The entire narrative of Magic is that you’re a wizard battling for supremacy, so they naturally created an RPG in which you’re a novice wizard gaining powers (cards) in an open world, building and trying out decks until you can tackle the big monster. It’s so perfect that WotC has spent the last 15 years trying to find a way to make players spend more money for less game.

          • Aninhumer says:

            The AI in Shandalar seemed a bit weak to me, and I’m not even particularly good at Magic.
            And sometimes it’s completely broken, like when it tries to do a bait-and-switch with Giant Growth, but then casts it on your creature instead.

  3. Shardz says:

    I love MTG and Magic Online, but with this new iteration of both clients (PC and Android), it’s a miserable experience staring at a blindingly white screen for any length of time. I wrote WotC and gave them my opinion of this *glaring* oversight and they shrugged it off like I was on crack. You can certainly tell what kind of environment the devs have to work in to come up with this travesty – bright white fluorescent lighting. Until they get a night mode (dark UI and/or skin) implemented, I am staying away from this thing like Yoko Ono to talent.