Fourth Edition

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Fourth Edition
Fourth Edition
Set Information
Set symbol
Symbol description Roman numeral IV
Design Richard Garfield
with contributions from
Charlie Cateeno
Skaff Elias
Don Felice
Tom Fontaine
Jim Lin
Joel Mick
Chris Page
Dave Pettey
Barry "Bit" Reich
Bill Rose
Elliott Segal
Development Same as design
Art direction None
Release date April 1995
Plane Dominaria
Themes and
None new
Keywords and/
or ability words
None new
Set size 378 (121 common, 121 uncommon, 121 rare, 15 land)
Expansion code 4ED[1]
Development codename Francesca
Core sets
Revised Edition Fourth Edition Fifth Edition
Magic: The Gathering chronology
Fallen Empires Fourth Edition Ice Age
Fourth Edition booster

Fourth Edition (4th Edition) is a Magic core set that was released in April 1995. This set contained no new cards.

Set details[edit | edit source]

51 cards were removed from the Revised Edition and 122 cards from previous expansions (Legends and The Dark) were added. Fourth Edition was the first set to have its basic lands printed on a separate print sheet. This freed up room on the other card sheets to include more spells. Fourth Edition cards have white borders in the American printing while foreign printings have black borders when no prior edition was released on that market. The set has no expansion symbol.

The second tap symbol.
  • A copyright notice now appeared on the bottom of the cards (dated 1995). The copyright was now attributed to Wizards of the Coast, and not to the artist anymore.
  • The beveled border missing from Revised was restored. The colors were also much brighter.
  • A new white mana symbol ({W}) was introduced.[2]
  • The tap symbol changed to a curved arrow symbol, with a black rectangle representing the tapping card behind it.[3]
  • An Alternate Fourth Edition run was printed by the United States Playing Card Corporation in Cincinnati. Due to a dispute between the two companies, the cards were never officially published.[4][5]

Marketing[edit | edit source]

Fourth Edition Gift Box

Cards were available from May 3, 1995 well past the end of the run in April 1997.[6] The print run is estimated at 500 million cards. The cards were sold in 60-card starter decks and 15-card boosters. Fourth Edition was the first set with booster packs made of foil wrappers and the first with artwork on the wrappers (Brass Man, Hurloon Minotaur, Mana Vault, Mesa Pegasus, and Spirit Link). The boosters didn't contain basic lands anymore. Starters included an extra rare card, up from 2 to 3 from previous releases and uncommons were reduced to 9 from the previous 13. The package of the starter decks now displayed the five mana symbols, instead of the five colored stones. The set was supplemented with a special Gift Box. The Fourth Edition Gift Box included two starter decks, 30 glass counters, a flannel bag for storing the counters, an illustrated rulebook and a card collectors' checklist.

Fourth Edition was published in English, French, German, Italian, and as a first for a Magic set in Japanese, traditional Chinese, Korean, Spanish, and Portuguese (primarily for the Brazilian market).

Rules changes[edit | edit source]

Cycles[edit | edit source]

Fourth Edition has five cycles.

Cycle name {W} {U} {B} {R} {G}
Circles of protection Circle of Protection: White Circle of Protection: Blue Circle of Protection: Black Circle of Protection: Red Circle of Protection: Green
Each of these common white enchantments has a mana cost of {1}{W} and the ability to prevent the all damage from a source of a given color for {1}.
Laces Purelace Thoughtlace Deathlace Chaoslace Lifelace
Each of these rare instants permanently changes the color of a permanent.
Lucky charms Ivory Cup Crystal Rod Throne of Bone Iron Star Wooden Sphere
Each of these uncommon artifacts has a triggered ability that allows the controller pay {1} to gain 1 life when a spell of a given color resolves.
Mana batteries White Mana Battery Blue Mana Battery Black Mana Battery Red Mana Battery Green Mana Battery
Uncommon artifacts with a casting cost of {4} and the two activated abilities "{2}, {T}: Put a charge counter on [this]" and "{T}, Remove any number of charge counters from [this]: Add M, then add an additional M for each charge counter removed this way," where M is a specific color of mana.
Wards White Ward Blue Ward Black Ward Red Ward Green Ward
Uncommon white auras with enchant creature that grant protection from a color.

Mirrored pairs[edit | edit source]

Fourth Edition has 22 mirrored pairs.

  • Blue Elemental Blast and Red Elemental Blast are both common instants (formerly interrupts) with a mana cost of M and with a modal ability to either destroy a permanent of the other's color or counter a spell of the other's color.
  • Deathgrip and Lifeforce are each uncommon enchantments with an activated ability to counter a spell of the other's color for MM.
  • Earthquake and Hurricane are both sorceries that have a mana cost of {X}M and deal {X} damage to all non-flying or flying creatures and each player.
  • Feedback and Wanderlust are both uncommon Auras that deal 1 damage to the controller of the enchanted permanent during each of their upkeeps.
  • Holy Strength and Unholy Strength are both common auras with enchant creature that give a mirrored bonus to the enchanted creature's power/toughness.
  • Manabarbs and Power Surge are both rare red enchantments that deal damage to a player based on the number of lands they do or don't tap.
  • Smoke and Winter Orb both allow players to only untap one of a type of permanent each turn.
  • Tsunami and Flashfires are both uncommon sorceries that have a mana cost of {3}M and destroy lands of a particular enemy type.

Core set changes[edit | edit source]

Notable changes

Misprints[edit | edit source]

  • Gaea's Liege — The card name is misspelled as "Gaea's Leige" once in the text box.
  • Segovian Leviathan — The quotation in the flavor text is from Job 41:1, not Job 40:25 (although it is Job 40:25 in the original Hebrew text). This error was corrected in Fifth Edition.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Wizards of the Coast (August 02, 2004). "Ask Wizards - August, 2004". Wizards of the Coast.
  2. Magic Arcana (February 6, 2003). "White mana symbol". Wizards of the Coast.
  3. Magic Arcana (July 12, 2004). "The Changing Tap Symbol". Wizards of the Coast.
  4. The Wizards Cupboard: 4th Edition alternate starter deck
  5. Mark Rosewater (June 20, 2016). "25 More Random Things About Magic". Wizards of the Coast.
  6. Stephen D'Angelo (February 2, 1999) "Card Rulings Summary". Usenet.
  7. Adam Conus, Tom Wylie, Jim Lin, and Rich Redman (August 17, 2009). "Fourth Edition FAQ and General Rulings Summary". Wizards of the Coast.

External links[edit | edit source]