Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths

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Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths
ILB logo.png
Set Information
Set symbol
Symbol description A monstrous eye
Design Mark Rosewater (lead)
Development David Humpherys (lead)
Release date April 17, 2020 (Asia)
May 15, 2020 (other)
Themes and
Keywords and/
or ability words
Expansion code IKO[1]
Development codename Cricket
Non-block expansions
Theros Beyond Death Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths Zendikar Rising
Magic: The Gathering chronology
Challenger Decks 2020 Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths Commander 2020
Expansion symbol

Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths is the 84th Magic expansion. It was originally scheduled to be released on April 24, 2020. Due to the 2019-2020 coronavirus pandemic, the paper release was advanced to April 17, 2020 for Asia, and delayed until May 15, 2020 for the other continents, while Magic Online and MTG Arena release on April 16, 2020.[2][3][4] The set makes use of Monster movie tropes.[5]

Set details[edit | edit source]

“  Make Your Monster  ”

Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths contains TBA cards (TBA basic lands, TBA commons, TBA uncommons, TBA rares, TBA mythic rares), and includes randomly inserted premium versions of all cards. Additional cards are found in the set's Theme Boosters and a unique Buy-a-Box promotional card is also considered to be part of the set. Cards with alternate card frames have another card number than the original version. Borderless planeswalkers are numbered #TBA-TBA, Showcase cards are numbered #TBA-TBA, the Buy-a-Box is #TBA, Theme Booster rares are #TBA-TBA and extended artwork cards are numbered #TBA-TBA. The Bundle promo is numbered #TBA. Finally there are FNM-treatment cards from the Universal promo pack numbered #TBA-TBA. Both regular and foil versions of these cards may be found in the Collector Boosters.

The set is mostly designed bottom-up, but there are also some top-down individual card designs.[6] The set's expansion symbol is a monstrous eye.

Storyline[edit | edit source]

The setting is Ikoria, a plane of beasts and monsters.[7] The planeswalker Vivien Reid is featured on the key art.

Marketing[edit | edit source]

Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths is sold in regular 16-card Draft Boosters (one card being a marketing card), mono-colored Theme Boosters, Collector Boosters, the Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths bundle and five Commander decks.[7]

Each booster box contains a box topper.[8]

Events[edit | edit source]

Promotional cards[edit | edit source]

Tokens/emblems/markers[edit | edit source]

The sixteenth card in the boosters is a token or emblem, with advertisements on the back side. There is also a set of double-sided keyword counters.[12]

Themes and mechanics[edit | edit source]

Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths is noted to be about "building your own monsters" and will feature a new mechanic to represent this.[13][14]

The set introduces the keyword ability mutate.[15] You can mutate a creature you control, but it is currently unknown what that entails. At least one creature can be mutated multiple times.[16] Mutate was first referred to on the silver-bordered card Surgeon General Commander in Unsanctioned.[17]

The set makes use of keyword counters.[12] These were introduced on a test card in the Mystery Booster set (Recycla-bird with flying counters).

The set uses twelve different types of counters (thirteen including loyalty counters).[16] One of those counters is a foreshadow counter.[16]

Card types[edit | edit source]

The set introduces the Otter creature type and reintroduces the Shark type.[16] It also features the first standard-legal Brushwagg since Mirage, and the first black-bordered Squirrel since Odyssey.

Preconstructed decks[edit | edit source]

Main article: Commander 2020

Planeswalker decks are discontinued for expansions.[18] For this set, they are replaced by five Commander decks (Ikoria Commander). This is essentially Commander 2020 aligning with Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths.[19] The 71 new cards in the decks are set on the world of Ikoria, but the reprints can be from anywhere. There are a handful of cards from the main Ikoria set in these decks in the reprint slots, but the number is fairly small. The cards are only legal in Eternal formats like Legacy, Vintage, and Pauper. They have their own expansion symbol and set code (C20) to set them apart.

deck name
Color Identity Commander
{W} {U} {B} {R} {G}
Ruthless Regiment TBA
Arcane Maelstrom TBA
Symbiotic Swarm TBA
Timeless Wisdom TBA
Enhanced Evolution TBA

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Mark Rosewater (March 22, 2020). "What is Ikoria's three-letter set code?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  2. Magic Announcement Stream (Video). Magic: the Gathering. YouTube (September 4, 2019).
  3. Wizards Europe (October 11, 2019). "We're happy to announce the release dates for two upcoming sets in 2020!". Twitter.
  4. a b c Wizards of the Coast (March 26, 2020). "Changes to the Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths Release Schedule". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  5. Mark Rosewater (March 30, 2020). "Human History". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  6. Mark Rosewater (October 12, 2019). "Is Ikoria more of a top-down world or a bottom-up one?.". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  7. a b WPN. "Product info". Wizards Play Network.
  8. Weekly MTG: Jumpstart!. Twitch.tv/magic (February 20, 2020).
  9. Wizards of the Coast (March 11, 2020). "Event Guidelines and Accomodations". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  10. Wizards of the Coast (March 23, 2020). "In-Store Plaay Suspended in NA, EU and LATAM". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  11. WPN (January 20, 2020). "Scheduling Opens Next Week: Commander Nights". Wizards Play Network.
  12. a b Jeffrey Dohm-Sanchez (November 25, 2019). "DETAILS REVEALED FOR 'MAGIC: THE GATHERING' 'IKORIA: LAIR OF BEHEMOTHS' PRODUCT LINE". ICv2.com.
  13. Mark Rosewater (September 04, 2019). "I missed the announcement of the sets for next year.". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  14. Mark Rosewater (September 04, 2019). "Can I get a maybe on Host/Augment being in Ikoria?". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  15. Mark Rosewater (February 24, 2020). "Unboxing, Part 3". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
  16. a b c d Mark Rosewater (March 18, 2020). "Maro's Ikoria Teaser". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  17. Mark Rosewater (January 28, 2020). "Surgeon ~~General~~ Commander from Unsanctioned says "Whenever you enchant, augment, or mutate a creature you control."". Blogatog. Tumblr.
  18. Caranthir (September 10, 2019). "Are Planeswalker Decks being discontinued? (Comment #11)". MTG Salvation.
  19. Gavin Verhey (October 30, 2019). "Big Things Are Coming for Commander in 2020". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.