|Art direction||Jesper Myrfors|
|Release date||March 4, 1994|
|Artifacts, protection from artifacts (early version), Urza lands|
or ability words
|Set size||85 (28 Common 37 Uncommon 20 Rare)|
|Magic: The Gathering chronology|
Antiquities is the second Magic: The Gathering expansion and was released on March 4, 1994. It is not considered part of any Block. The set was constructed around an artifact theme, and told the story of the Brothers' War between Mishra and Urza.
Antiquities was printed on sheets of 121 cards. The expansion symbol is an anvil, to symbolize the artifact focus of the set. The set's rarity breakdown is: 28 commons (25@C4, 1@C5, 2@C6), 37 Uncommons (4@U2, 29@U3, 2@C1, 2@(U3+C1)), 20 Rares (20@U1). This strange distribution comes from the lands Mishra's Factory, Strip Mine, Urza's Mine, Urza's Power Plant and Urza's Tower which have four different pieces of art each. Mishra's Factory and Strip Mine have three versions at U1 and one at C1. Urza's Mine and Urza's Power Plant have two versions at C1 and two at C2. Urza's Tower has three versions at C1 and one at C2. This makes it so collectors view Antiquities as a 100-card set.
Every card in Antiquities either is an artifact or mentions artifacts in their rules text, except the lands which produce colorless mana and imply use to cast artifacts. The Antiquities lands have a unique rust-colored text box, which was reused in Fourth Edition and Chronicles.
Cards were available from mid-March 1994 through late April 1994. The print run was announced by Wizards to be 15 million cards. Antiquities was sold in booster packs of eight cards, which included six commons and two uncommons. Booster boxes contained 60 booster packs. The packs were not entirely random; players had to buy more than one box to complete the 100-card set. Wizards created the Antiquities Buy-Back program where players could send up to 100 cards back to receive cash back.
Ancient artifacts of the Thran Empire are discovered on the continent of Terisiare, including many advanced machines of war. Two brothers, Urza and Mishra, discover a stone in the Caves of Koilos; but, when they disturb it, it splits in two—Mightstone and Weakstone—unleashing the evil of Phyrexia on Dominaria. The ancient machines of the Thran are employed in battle once again as the Brothers' War takes place, an epic war between Urza and Mishra for control of both halves of the stone. The war culminates in the Sylex Blast, plunging the world into the Ice Age.
About half of the creature types used in Antiquities were new, and many of the creatures in this expansion are artifact creatures. Originally, artifact creatures were printed without any creature type, except in special cases (Wall of Spears "counts as a wall," for example). This resulted in an overall limited use of creature types in this expansion. Additionally, with the printing of Antiquities, Magic had exactly 100 creature types.
The following creature types are introduced in this expansion: Archaeologist (later changed to Artificer), Atog, Druid, Gaea's Avenger (later changed to Treefolk), Gremlin (later changed to Ouphe then changed back to Gremlin), Poltergeist (later changed to Spirit), and Sage (later changed to Artificer).
The following creature types are used in this expansion but also appear in previous sets: Bodyguard (later changed to Human), Cleric, Demon, Dwarf, Faerie, Goblin, Orc, Smith (later changed to Human), Treefolk, and Wall. The creature types in Antiquities brought the total number in Magic at the time to exactly 100.
Antiquities itself has no cycles. It does, however, contain Atog, which later became the first member of the "atog mega-mega cycle", which includes Auratog, Foratog, Chronatog, and Necratog from Mirage.
- Mishra's Workshop is a powerful land that produces a large amount of mana that is only useful for casting artifacts. There are plenty of powerful artifacts that a player would be happy to cast two turns sooner thanks to this card.
- Candelabra of Tawnos saw play in early competitive combo decks, and resurfaced in competitive Time Spiral decks in Legacy in 2011.
- Millstone: First card to introduce the mechanic of putting cards directly into the graveyard from the library, now commonly referred to as milling after this card.
- Mishra's Factory is arguably the best manland ever printed. It only got better with the Sixth Edition rules change.
- Strip Mine is a very powerful land destruction tool that many decks automatically included a maximum four of.
- Urza's Tower, Urza's Mine, and Urza's Power Plant, affectionately called the "Urzatron", have seen major competitive use only since 2003 for their ability to produce large amounts of mana quickly in combination.
- Antiquities is the first expansion to use multiple versions of a card with different artwork (outside of the Core Set's basic lands) and the only expansion to use multiple versions on nonbasic lands.
- Margaret Organ-Kean's name was misspelled as "Margaret Organ-Keen" on all three cards illustrated by her in this set (Amulet of Kroog, Ivory Tower, and Martyrs of Korlis).
- Randy Asplund-Faith's name was misspelled as "Randy Apslund-Faith" on all three cards illustrated by him in this set (Clockwork Avian, Detonate, and Urza's Miter).
- Reconstruction — Printed without an expansion symbol.
- Tawnos's Weaponry — has two variants. One is missing the gray circle behind the activation cost. Each version is equally rare.
- Wizards of the Coast (August 02, 2004). "Ask Wizards - August, 2004". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Brady Dommermuth (October 31, 2006). "Ask Wizards". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Mark Rosewater (February 16, 2009). "25 Random Things About Magic". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Official Antiquities Information Product Page — Magic: The Gathering (old)
- Antiquities product information page (new)
- Antiquities checklist