Magic: The Gathering Head Designer Explains Why "Seven Dwarves" Throne of Eldraine Card Has Only 1 Art

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By Jake Vyper | More Articles MTG Writer/Streamer
September 11, 2019  03:04 PM

 

The "Seven Dwarves" Magic: The Gathering card from Throne of Eldraine is one of the most talked-about cards from the upcoming set because of its unique ability that matches its fairy tale-themed flavor. This card is clearly inspired by Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs story based on the German fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm. The card was revealed today with art illustrated by Jason Rainville, but fans are wondering if it will get six other versions with different art to match its theme. Magic head designer Mark Rosewater has confirmed that it only has one art and explained the reason. 

"There is sadly only one piece of art," Rosewater said on his Blogatog. "We didn’t have the budget to get seven different pieces."

In the original fairy tale, the seven dwarfs have different identities so it's easy to see why fans would like to see seven different versions of the same card. Rosewater went on to explain: 

"We didn’t have it built into the budget, and getting six extra pieces of art is a big ask, but not just for the money, but the other resources like using up a particular artist’s time. Logistically, you’d want all the pieces by the same artist, but one artist would need additional time to do seven pieces.

And all of this doesn’t get into the collation issues. There aren’t seven copies of that one card on the sheet, so we’d have to either have it show up more at the cost of seeing other cards, or print an extra sheet which, with eleven languages, gets *very* pricey.

So, was a huge amount of logistical headaches and a not insignificant amount of money worth the visual gag of having seven unique Dwarves? We deemed it wasn’t."

Rosewater's explanation shows that even though Magic is having its most profitable year largely thanks to the success of MTG Arena, Wizards of the Coast still has limits when it comes to production. Even though it would be cool to see seven different versions of "Seven Dwarves", it just doesn't seem practical. 

Earlier today, the "Seven Dwarves" card got a rules clarification for Limited formats: You can still only have seven copies of this card in the main deck even though you can usually run any amount in Draft or Sealed.  

Throne of Eldraine, the 82nd Magic expansion, is set to release on October 4. Prerelease events will take place on September 27 to 29. 

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Jake Vyper is a Fantasy & Sci-Fi Author, Social Media Manager, and Founder of Epicstream.com
@Jake Vyper | jake@epicstream.com