The Theros block (2013-2014) of Magic: The Gathering introduced cards that feature themes inspired by ancient Greek, and the latest set Theros Beyond Death released more cards based on well-known classic characters from the Greek Mythology like Achilles (Haktos the Unscarred), Clotho (Klothys), and the titans (Uro and Kroxa), but did you know that Wizards of the Coast almost designed their own version of Hercules in the original Theros block?
Magic lead designer Mark Rosewater recently answered some questions about Theros Beyond Death, sharing his insightful responses on WotC's website. Rosewater revealed which cards didn't make it in the original Theros block that made it to Theros Beyond Death, and which card didn't make the cut at all.
Rosewater revealed that the two Theros Beyond Death cards that were originally designed for the Theros block were "Haktos the Unscarred" and "Mirror Shield". However, designer Ethan Fleischer initially the Achilles-inspired card differently:
Achilles 4UU Creature – Human Soldier 5/5 Protection from each converted mana cost except 5.
"We put it in the file, but somewhere between design handoff and print, it got cut," Rosewater said. "I believe Ethan put it back into Journey into Nyx, the set he led the design for at the end of the block, but once again it got cut later in the process. Following my lead of reaching print through persistence, Ethan put it into Theros Beyond Death during vision design, slightly tweaked, and this time it stayed resulting in this card."
Rosewater said that he designed a card based on Hercules and revealed its original design:
GG Legendary Creature – Human God 12/12 CARDNAME cannot attack or block unless you control twelve permanents.
"We would later do this card as a whole mechanic called ascend in Rivals of Ixlaan (although created in parallel design), so I tried my hand in doing another Hercules," Rosewater wrote. "(Sadly, I couldn't find my design. Just assume it was awesome.) Set Design ended up adding Demigods, so my Hercules got cut."
Maybe we'll see that card in a future Theros set. What do you think about Rosewater's version of Hercules? Would you like to see that card printed? Let us know in the comments section below.
Theros Beyond Death is now available.
Watch our new MTG Arena video with Theros Beyond Death cards: