With Magic: the Gathering approaching its 25th anniversary, it feels like we’re getting announcements left and right. Today, publisher Perfect World Entertainment announced that Cryptic Studios is developing an official Magic: the Gathering MMORPG.
The announcement comes via a press release on Business Wire, as well as tweets from Wizards of the Coast and an interview over at gamesindustry.biz.
Cryptic Studios is creating a Magic: The Gathering MMORPG! Hear more about it with Cryptic CEO Stephen D’Angelo: https://t.co/k8gGYPX8fO
— Magic: The Gathering (@wizards_magic) June 7, 2017
A release date has not yet been announced, but according to the press release, “Cryptic Studios is currently ramping up production in its Los Gatos headquarters for the development of the game.” They have announced, however, that the game is in development for PC and console. While specific consoles have not been stated, Cryptic Studios has released prior games on Windows, PS4 and XBOX One.
When The Discard reached out for confirmation of specific console support, Perfect World Entertainment Communications Director Narbeh Avanessian stated, “We’re currently evaluating that so unfortunately don’t have those details yet.”
An MTG MMO should come as little surprise. Cryptic Studios has previously created the popular MMO Neverwinter based on D&D – also owned by Wizards of the Coast. Magic: the Gathering’s lore is well-suited for role playing games, and it has already been translated into non-card games with varying levels of success.
Back in May, NeoGAF users correctly predicted that Cryptic Studios was working on a Magic MMORPG, and it looks like we did not need to wait long for confirmation.
Beyond today’s announcements, we can only guess what direction the game will take. With a large number of possible planes and story lines to pursue, Cryptic Studios CEO Stephen D’Angelo stated in his gamesindustry.biz interview, “It’s about jumping into the world and the fiction of Magic: the Gathering.”
Early reactions to the news online have been mixed, with some players exclaiming that Magic: the Gathering is perfect for an MMORPG. Yet others are voicing concerns that they would rather see Wizards focus on making a higher quality digital card game.
It’s important to note, however, that this is not likely to distract from a new digital card game or updated version of MTGO, since it is being developed by Cryptic Studios, not Wizards of the Coast themselves. A successful Magic-branded MMO could also potentially turn more players onto the worlds of Magic, and perhaps bring them into the card game proper.
For now, however, we’ll await further announcements.
A version of this story also appeared on Card Knock Life.