Magic: The Gathering is Turning 25 Years Old (And Now We Can Explore the Lore)

Before there was World of Warcraft, there was Magic: The Gathering.

Okay, I’m not sure if that’s absolute fact, but it seems like it to me.

I’ll share a secret with you: I’ve never been able to connect CCGs, that is, collectible card games. I’m not sure what happened to me along the way, but somewhere in life, tabletop gaming and long, involved card games never managed to grasp me. It probably has something to do with my inability to sit still, chill out, and follow directions.

Squirmy unless writing– guilty as charged.

But even with that, Magic the Gathering is still one of my happiest adolescent memories. Hear me out! I remember hanging around Alan (our PopLurker chef, remember?) back in high school while he and his friends hid out in this small courtyard between the B and C buildings during recess and lunch. While he and his friends ignored me during their “apres concrete” card game sessions, I feel like it might have been some of my earliest exposure to card gaming and the culture behind it.

After that, I started hanging around card game shops. I knew from my local comic book store “Collector’s Guide to the Galaxy” that Pokemon cards were hot, but Magic was another level. I really wanted to learn to play. So, when my friend Gil introduced me to “All Ways Gaming” in Chatsworth, I bugged my friend Nate until he sat me down to teach me.

I made it until Graveyard before I needed to get up and bother the dude at the counter.

But what always stood out to me was the artwork. Those cards are stunning, and the immense lore behind the game is just a literary masterpiece. In typical Nostalgia-Lord form, I can’t believe we’ve hit the game’s 25th Anniversary. How long is life? How old am I? How long have I been this deep into “nerd culture”? Oh my gosh, did I really see my first episode of Sailor Moon 21 years ago?

You bet, toots.

But our fandoms are strong, and Magic Players still Gather to that Gathering. So when this Press Release was sent to me by Viz Media, a company I sincerely adore and have more or less worshiped since I saw my first episode of Ranma 1/2 in 1998, I knew it needed more than just a copy/paste FYI press release. Because I was affected– positively! But this is important. Our hobbies are important. Our passions are important. So, let’s all keep gathering for the game.

Because us indulging in our loves? That’s part of the magic.



VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), a premier company in the fields of publishing, animation distribution, and global entertainment licensing, celebrates the 25th anniversary of Magic: The Gathering® with this officially licensed illustrated history exploring the legend, lore, and origins of the bestselling strategy card game.


Written by Magic: The Gathering Senior Game Designer James Wyatt, this deluxe slip-cased, hardcover volume with collectible art prints provides readers with a rareglimpse of the creative process behind the evolving art and design of Magic: The Gathering. MAGIC: THE GATHERING—CONCEPTS & LEGENDS is now available, and carries an MSRP of $39.99 U.S. / $53.99 CAN.

James Wyatt and the Wizards of the Coast team of storytellers and artists open up the archives to give fans a behind-the-scenes look at how they develop the look and feel of the characters, planes, and creatures of the world’s most popular trading card game. Celebrating the 25th anniversary of Magic: The Gathering, this beautiful collector’s hardcover book features artwork, sketches and commentary showcasing the expansive world that has captivated generations.

“CONCEPTS & LEGENDS pulls from the art and design teams’ sketch books and notes to focus on where the worlds and lore of Magic: The Gathering started 25 years ago, where we are now, and where we’re going to go next,” says Joel Enos, Senior Editor. “Made to highlight the 25th Anniversary of Magic: The Gathering, this is the ultimate collector’s book for Magic fans around the world.”

James Wyatt is a Senior Game Designer on the creative team for Magic: The Gathering. His work at Wizards of the Coast since 2000 includes five novels, more than 20 short stories, one poem and dozens of Dungeons & Dragons® game sourcebooks.

Throughout its 25-year history, Magic: The Gathering has visited many richly imaginative worlds through card sets and stories. Developed by Wizards of the Coast, Magic: The Gathering has tens of millions of fans, is played in more than 70 countries, and is available in 11 languages. Magic: The Gathering has won numerous notable awards, including a Mensa Award and multiple Origins Awards, the Hobby Game industry’s annual top award.

VIZ Media’s catalog of MAGIC: THE GATHERING titles includes THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—DOMINARIA, THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—IXALAN, THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—AMONKHET, THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—KALADESH, THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—INNISTRAD, and THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING—ZENDIKAR. Each hardcover edition contains specially curated collections of plane-specific illustrations from Wizards of the Coast’s popular strategy card game, Magic: The Gathering.

For additional information on THE ART OF MAGIC: THE GATHERING titles distributed and published by VIZ Media, please visit


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