Magic: the Gathering might be the physical trading card game that continues to dominate the competitive landscape, but it is also starting to make strides in the digital space and tackle the space made popular through the likes of Blizzard’s Hearthstone. Wizards of the Coast released Magic Arena last year to popular acclaim as it provided the already highly strategic and competitive card game with a faithful adaptation. Not the first adaptation of the game electronically, but easily the best.
And it looks like Wizards of the Coast is looking to expand their reach of the game as parent company Hasbro announced in an earnings call (via Hipsters of the Coast) that the game will come to mobile devices this year. Magic Arena is only available on Windows desktops and while it has already been lauded as the perfect way to introduce people to the drug-like addiction that is Magic many people will probably prefer to play a game like this on their mobile devices, meaning that even more people can get introduced to the game. Hasbro can probably smell the money from already.
It’s not clear if the full features of the current free-to-play game and its different expansions will come to mobile or if the mobile version will be simplified in some manner. Hopefully, it will allow people to compete against each other regardless of the device they play with. As any Magic player knows, the real beauty in the game is in its competitive nature and so giving people more ways to compete against each other should be an easy win for the company if they can make the experience a fun one.
The existing game comes with a few free to play decks, but the ultimate lure is in buying other cards and decks that make you infinitely more useful in competition, so be warned that if you are susceptible to digital crack such as this, that it could definitely cost a lot of money if you get hooked and want to compete with the best. I stopped playing Magic a fair while ago because of the expense and I feel tempted to get back into it with this. Not sure how my wallet will feel though.
There is no official release date yet for the mobile release of Magic Arena.
Last Updated: February 13, 2020
Jacques Van Zyl
February 13, 2020 at 16:27
I currently use Google Remote Desktop to play this on mobile and the interface already works perfectly fine on touch devices so it is not hard to see this simply work on mobile. I also play this with a controller at home so you know, I feel the user interface is great as is.
That said, I don’t support the business practices right now and would recommend people interested in the greatest card game ever to rather pick up some paper cards and play modern or commander at your nearest kitchen table or local game store.
Arena is great for what it is, but sadly what it is, is a predatory business model tacked on to a great digital client of cardboard crack.