|An '8' before a fan of cards|
|Randy Buehler Jr.|
with contributions from
|Same as design|
|July 28, 2003|
Themes and mechanics
Keywords and/or ability words
|Fear newly keyworded|
|357 (113 Common 113 Uncommon 111 Rare 20 Land)|
|7th Edition||8th Edition||9th Edition|
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
Set details[edit | edit source]
Eighth Edition featured 357 white-bordered cards (110 rare, 110 uncommon, 110 common, 7 fixed, and 20 basic lands), including cards from every previous expansion set since Alpha.  The seven fixed cards only appeared in the Core Game pack. The set introduced a new cardface design that allowed for larger art and more card text.
Eighth Edition added reminder text about flying to those creatures that have the ability. it was also the first core set to see Fear in print (Fear was keyworded in Onslaught). The tap symbol changed to the simple, straightforward, easy-to-see curved arrow, without the rectangle behind it.  The set introduced the basic supertype for lands.
Card frame[edit | edit source]
The colored frames around the edges of the card were redesigned and narrowed, boxes were placed around card names and creatures' Power/Toughness, card names were printed in a more modern font (Matrix Bold, rather than Goudy Medieval) and mana symbols appearing in the text box of artifacts were no longer colored. 
Some players felt the new look interfered with the 'classical' fantasy feel of the game.  An early problem was that the new card frames of white and artifact cards were hard to tell apart with a quick glance, which lead to the darkening of the frame of artifact cards with Fifth Dawn.  The gray mana symbols in the textbox of artifact cards were corrected with Ravnica: City of Guilds.
Marketing[edit | edit source]
Eighth Edition was marketed as Core Set, because there were concerns that older base sets confused newer players — their primary audience — by making them feel like they "missed out" on five or six previous editions and were hopelessly behind.  The set logo was still an "8" and it is still commonly referred to as Eighth Edition.
Eighth Edition was set to be released to coincide with the 10th Anniversary of Magic: the Gathering 's original release , so the developers took a different approach to the core set. Every previous expansion (34 sets in all) had at least one card reprinted in Eighth Edition that had not been reprinted in the base set before, with a series of votes on Magicthegathering.com website deciding what got reprinted.    New artwork for the reprintes often referenced the old art.  "Global Celebration" tournaments were held July 26-27, 2003 as a release event of 8th Edition and a commemoration of Magic 's 10th Anniversary.  The participation bonus was a foil Rukh Egg. A 4/4 Rukh Token with Flying for the same card was featured as a Player Reward. 
Eighth was sold in 15-card-booster packs, 5 different Theme decks and a Core Game (which was a 2-Player Starter Set), but not in tournament packs. The boosters featured artwork from Blinding Angel, Lhurgoyf, Phyrexian Plaguelord, Two-Headed Dragon and Tidal Kraken.
The set featured randomly inserted premium black-bordered versions of all cards in the set, and also oversized Box-Topper Cards found at the top of each booster display box.  The Eighth Edition came with both 24-card Demogame boosters and 10-card sampler packs.
Rules changes[edit | edit source]
A rules change was that the card draw each turn no longer used the stack.  Instead the player simply draws a card as their draw step starts. They see what they draw before abilities that trigger "at the beginning of your draw step" are put onto the stack. Spells and abilities that affect the normal card draw should be played during the upkeep step, not the draw step. The type line of each basic land now included the words "Basic Land" and the land's type, separated by a long dash. For example, a Forest card has the printed type line "Basic Land — Forest." Plains, Island, Swamp, Mountain, and Forest cards printed in earlier sets should be treated as though they had the same type line as the Eighth Edition basic lands.
Cycles[edit | edit source]
8th Edition has 3 cycles.
- Circles of protection: Each of these common white enchantments has a mana cost of and the ability to prevent the all damage from a source of a given color for — Circle of Protection: White, Circle of Protection: Blue, Circle of Protection: Black, Circle of Protection: Red, and Circle of Protection: Green.
- Lucky charms: Each of these uncommon artifacts has a triggered ability that allows the controller pay to gain 1 life when a spell of a given color resolves — Ivory Cup, Crystal Rod, Throne of Bone, Iron Star, and Wooden Sphere.
- Taplands are dual lands that come into play tapped. They are from Invasion — Shivan Oasis, Elfhame Palace, Coastal Tower, Salt Marsh and Urborg Volcano.
Theme decks[edit | edit source]
|Theme deck name||Colors included|
Cards added to 8th Edition[edit | edit source]
Whenever a development team at the time worked on a base set, they made a wish list of cards they wanted to include but were unable to as the card did not exist and they were not allowed to add new cards. In essence, the team ordered cards for the next base set (traditionally two years later). This meants that the Seventh Edition development team had made a wish list for Eighth Edition. 
- Red's Enrage replaced black's Howl From Beyond in both 8th and 9th Edition.
- Green's Naturalize replaced white's Disenchant in 8th and all future core sets.
- The Urzatron set was added and found its way into many tournament decks during its inclusion in core sets.
Changes in rarity to 8th Edition[edit | edit source]
The Circle of Protection series, a perennial core set entity, remained in the set but changed from common to uncommon.
Cards removed from 7th Edition[edit | edit source]
- Counterspell was not printed in 8th Edition or since. It had been deemed that a hard counter costing just was too powerful. Cancel from Time Spiral would become the hard counter at .
- Merfolk were not printed in 8th Edition.
- Llanowar Elves lost from Birds of Paradise. 
References[edit | edit source]
- Wizards of the Coast. (2004-08-02.) “Ask Wizards - August, 2004”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 14, 2003.) “Let's Start at the Very Beginning”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Randy Buehler. (July 11, 2003.) “Something Old, Something Cool...”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (July 12, 2004.) “The Changing Tap Symbol”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (January 27, 2003.) “Frames of Reference”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- MagicTheGathering.com Staff. (January 20, 2003.) “Card Face Redesign FAQ”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (August 05, 2013.) “Twenty Things That Were Going To Kill Magic”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Randy Buehler. (October 31, 2003.) “A Scary Card Frame Story”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (March 31, 2003.) “Core Set”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (February 17, 2003.) “10th Anniversary Press Release”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Aaron Forsythe. (November 25, 2002.) “Selecting Eighth Edition Wrapup”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 01, 2002.) “No Two See the Same Game”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 7, 2003.) “Good to the Core. Selecting Old Favorites for Eighth Edition”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (July 29, 2003.) “Eighth Edition homage”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (April 09, 2003.) “Global Celebration announcement”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (June 27, 2003.) “Promo premium Rukh Egg”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (September 24, 2003.) “The new look of tokens”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Magic Arcana. (July 23, 2003.) “Eighth Edition box toppers”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Paul Barclay. (July 08, 2003.) “Eighth Edition Rules Update”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast. (August 18, 2008.) “Eighth Edition Theme Decks”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 21, 2003.) “Small Change”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater. (July 29, 2002.) “When Bad Things Happen to Good Cards”, magicthegathering.com, Wizards of the Coast.
[edit | edit source]