Battle of Baldur Gate Sees Magic: The Gathering cross again with Dungeons & Dragons (D&D), only this time, in Commander Legends format. What is Commander Legends? Well, it debuted in 2020, and it combines the very popular Commander format with Draft. This means that players take turns choosing from a limited set of cards to build the best possible lineup. Unlike a normal leader, decks can contain multiple copies of a single card and consist of 60 cards instead of 100, and unlike Draft, synergies are easier to create, with players choosing two cards at a time.
The last D&D collection, Adventures in the Forgotten Realms (AFR), included a collection of classic D&D settings, characters and gameplay items, as well as Battle for Baldur’s Gate. Backgrounds, for example, are a new type of magic, and they will help represent your leader’s story so far and give them a reward. Initiative, meanwhile, is a new keyword ability associated with Undercity – a new dungeon card – as well as improving certain cards in the deck if you have the initiative. Characters such as Tasha the Witch, Elminster and the popular duo Minsc and Boo also appeared. Could you Read about all the new mechanics here.
It’s an interesting looking set that pairs nicely with two popular properties. I spoke to Game Designer Corey Bowen about returning to D&D for the Commander Legends set. “Dungeons & Dragons is a social game all about cooperation. Commander is currently Magic’s greatest expression of a social game where winning isn’t everything. The union of these two social group-based games brings a lot of harmony into this group,” he says. Commander Legends groups usually need a wealth of legendary characters as well, so borrowing from a mostly untapped IP teeming with characters and adventurers fits the bill too.
“There are some connections between the adventures in the Forgotten Realms and Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate,” he said, when I asked about the connections between the two. For example, the Dungeon mechanic and the rolling d20 mechanic both return. Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate is a two-tone build from adventures in Forgotten Realms themes, but you’ll see similarities because both are formed from similar source material. You’ll see crooks in UB and fighters in RW just like you saw in AFR.”
I also ask about how the Wizards of the Coast’s focus on world and character building has changed when working with an existing property. “Many of the characters here are already defined by a history and an energy group,” Bowen explains. “There is a lot of inspiration to draw from to make some very resonant and charming cards. But this is a double-edged sword. Sometimes there are card slots that have to be something specific that the right character doesn’t provide for that slot. Or maybe a character’s combination of strengths translates too poorly to Magic cards. In the first Commander Legends game it was easy to create, change or adapt any character we wanted. When working with an IP address, there is always a sacrifice to resonate a character’s story by changing an aspect of the card’s text – a sacrifice that doesn’t exist when we identify that character in Our IP address.
With all this background in mind, today we have a new card to reveal:
Despite the high cost, Legion Loyalty’s use of the keyword myriad seems very powerful. I asked Corey Bowen about it. “I love countless,” he says. Giving all of your myriad creatures is wonderful. Giving all of your myriad creatures is truly wonderful. One of the things I love about Myriad is the number of things you collect – the effects of entering the battlefield, ports of sacrifice, symbolic synergies , aggro strategies, you name it. There are a number of strategies you can use with Legion Loyalty. In this deck, if I craft this card early, I’ll probably play some kind of WU dungeon game and try to play the creatures that take the lead when they come into play. With countless people, each of them put me in the dungeon twice when attacking!”
Legion Loyalty also appears to be a good example of the kind of card design possible in a “fun first” format like Commander Legends. When I assume this and ask how the team card design philosophy has changed, Bowen says, “I would argue that every combination we make has ‘fun first’ as the primary directive.” For Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate, the difference is that they don’t need to be considered in their cards in competitive formats. It’s also true that multiplayer games (especially socially oriented games) are usually more tolerant of high-contrast games. In a particular group, if a particular combo is too reliable and easy to pull off, it becomes an issue with that limited and possibly competitive format created. In this deck, mixing and matching the abilities of your leader and finding those specialized combos among the giant deck of cards is fun. Assembling these assemblies is much less reliable, so we don’t have to balance these assemblies too rigidly for a limited or competitive built environment. There are also three opponents elimination bouts present to restrain you if you go too far. So the format includes big twists and big plays, which is a lot of the heart of the leader for me.”
Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate will contain 361 cards and will be released to the table on June 10th. For more information, be sure to visit The official homepage of Battle for Baldur’s Gate.
Cam Shea has worked for IGN since before times, and played more Breath of the wild More than just another game. When he’s not playing games he’s shuffling records.