Magic The Gathering Previews New March of the Machine Set

new mtg setmarch of the machinecoming next month 23032903

With an all-new set coming to the Magic: The Gathering card game, the March of the Machine release has been previewed ahead of its April 21st launch with new cards, mechanics, and more!

The March of the Machine set coming to Magic: The Gathering on April 21st, 2023, has been revealed and features all-new mechanics coming to the long-running card game for the very first time. With Battles, a transforming double-faced card can be played, which “represents Phyrexia’s invasion of the multiverse and everyone else playing a little defence.”

Magic The Gathering Previews New March Of The Machine Set 23032903

Here is how these new cards work while playing a round of Magic: The Gathering:

Casting a Battle

  • Battles can be cast during your main phase if the stack is empty, just like creatures, sorceries, and other non-instant spells.
  • Each battle enters the battlefield with a number of defence counters on it equal to its defence, found in the lower right corner of the front face. This tells you how much damage it takes to defeat a battle. Much like planeswalkers, battles can be attacked and damaged. But unlike with planeswalkers, the general idea isn’t to cast them, protect them, and hope they stick around. You’re battling to take them out.

Protecting & Attacking a Battle

  • A battle’s subtype provides rules for how it can be attacked. Since every battle in this set has the subtype Siege, they all play by the same rules. As a Siege battle enters the battlefield, its controller chooses an opponent to be its protector. Every player except a battle’s protector may attack it. 
  • Only a battle’s protector may block creatures attacking it. Don’t confuse the protector for the controller. You’re going to attack battles that you control—the first time in Magic that you’ve been able to attack your own permanents. 
  • Battles are susceptible to more than just combat damage, though. Some spells and abilities may specifically say that they cause damage to be dealt to battles. Also, any spell or ability that says “any target” can target a battle.

Defeating a Battle

  • Any damage dealt to a battle cause many defence counters to be removed from it. When the last defence counter is removed from a Siege battle, the battle is defeated, and a triggered ability triggers. 
  • As this ability resolves, the battle’s controller exiles it and then casts the back face from exile without paying its mana cost. 
Magic The Gathering Previews New March Of The Machine Set 23032903 1

Additionally, the inclusion of the following new abilities will surely add some flavour to each round:


A new triggered ability that allows creatures to help a friend—or even themselves—in a pinch. 

  • Whenever a creature with backup enters the battlefield, you put that many +1/+1 counters on a target creature. If you chose another creature as the target, that creature also gets every ability of the original creature that is printed below backup until the end of the turn.


A new keyword action that allows you to create Incubator tokens. 

  • An Incubator token is a new kind of predefined token, joining ones such as Food and Treasure. It’s also a transforming double-faced token. 
  • An Incubator token is a colourless artifact token with “{2}: Transform this artifact.” The back face is a 0/0 colourless Phyrexian artifact creature. The instruction to incubate will include a number that indicates how many +1/+1 counters to put on the Incubator token. Those counters don’t do much while the token has its front face up, but they do a great job of keeping the Phyrexian artifact creature alive once it transforms.

Chaos Ensues

Planechase is a major feature of the Commander decks in March of the Machine.

  • On previous plane cards, chaos abilities had the trigger condition, “Whenever you roll [CHAOS].” Starting with March of the Machine, this condition has been replaced by “whenever chaos ensues.” With respect to the planar die, nothing has changed; rolling [CHAOS] will still cause these abilities to trigger. However, now there are ways to have these abilities trigger that doesn’t involve the planar dying at all. 
YouTube video

Here is a brief synopsis of the story for the new March of the Machine set for Magic: The Gathering:

The March of the Machines has commenced. The Phyrexians are ready to conquer the entire Multiverse. Commanding the charge is Elesh Norn. Phyrexia had success invading the plane Mirrodin, and now they’re taking the fight everywhere. In order to travel across the multiverse, they’ve activated their greatest weapon: Realmbreaker, the Invasion Tree. 

Through its sprawling branches they send their mechanical legions to convert all planes. From Kamigawa to Ikoria the contagion proliferates. Realmbreaker’s gnarled branches are puncturing the surface of every plane. The stakes have never been higher, and everyone is rising to the defense of their home. But whose home will survive the invasion, and whose home won’t?

Magic: The Gathering

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