Magic: The Gathering LotR Expansion Tales From Middle Earth – Characters, cards & formats


Wizards of the Coast’s upcoming Magic set is entirely based around the world of Lord of the Rings. Here’s everything we know so far!

It seems as though the vicious grasp of Sauron cannot be contained to just Middle-Earth. The jubilant world of Lord of the Rings is coming to Magic: The Gathering, and Wizards of the Coast is only getting the pot of potatoes to a simmer according to previews.

Their first-look stream only showed off cards and didn’t delve too far into the mechanics of the set. So we’ve yet to find out what Tempt does, or if Battle is going to find its way into the set. However, it’s a relatively exciting – and official – first peek into Wizard’s version of Tolkien’s legendary story.

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Where to buy Magic: The Gathering’s Lord of the Rings set

all LOTR Magic products

Magic’s Lord of the Rings set is currently up for pre-order, wherever you get your sets. This is being distributed as a regular set for MTG, so it’s all in on the different products you can grab.

This includes bundles, Commander decks, collectors, and set boosters.

AmazonBest for sealed product
TCGPlayerBest for singles and sealed product

When does MTG LOTR release?

The Magic: The Gathering Lord of the Rings set will launch on June 23, 2023.

Magic’s 2023 is back-to-back bumper releases, with their own story coming to another eventful close and a Doctor Who set coming much later.

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Every character in MTG Lord of the Rings

In their Q&A session, Senior Communications Manager, Blake Rasmussen, confirmed the set will only involve the trilogy. This means no characters from The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, or Amazon’s Rings of Power show will be featured.

It’s safe to assume that all major characters will be represented in some fashion. Rasmussen even went on to say there will be multiple versions of a single character spread amongst the sets.

Right now, we know that the following characters will be included in Magic’s Lord of the Rings set:

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  • Gandalf the Grey
  • Gandalf the White
  • Frodo Baggins
  • Samwise Gamgee
  • Aragon
  • Arwen
  • Gollum
  • Sauron
  • Radagast the Brown
  • Tom Bombadil
  • Faramir
  • Èowyn
  • Balrog

From the four Commander decks coming alongside the main set, we also know that major players from Rohan, the Elves, and Mordor will be making an appearance. Elrond was name-dropped. Whether everyone features in the main set or not is yet to be seen.

Surprisingly, the Fellowship was not predominantly shown, so outside of Gandalf, Aragon, and two of our four Hobbits, we’ve yet to see anyone else. We’re putting bets on Gimli landing in Red, and Legolas being White and Green.

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Every LOTR card coming to MTG

Only a few cards have been shown off so far. IGN did get a small window of exclusivity before we got to see the rest. They showed off the lands included with each pack and a few familiar faces.

In Wizard’s own live stream, we got just a taste of what’s to come. In fact, such a taste that we saw two Sam cards, but no Gandalf the White (whose art was featured the day before).

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None of the cards we saw seem particularly powerful in Modern, and the team behind the set is stepping very carefully. The Walking Dead’s Secret Lair changed the shape of the game entirely for those that play Vintage and Legacy, with Rick dominating the meta.

This angered fans at the time, due to the cards being highly limited in availability and no alternative versions made available.

Mount Doom

For instance, there’s no dual land cycle this time around. Most sets will come with five cards that are part of a ‘cycle’. Here, it seems that Mount Doom might be the only one, and was expressly pointed out by Rasmussen that this was designed for flavor first.

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Some cards appear to be coming with up to two different versions. Most seem to be extended art, but particular ones like The Shire will feature an entirely different look.

Scene cards

Lord of the Rings scene cards

Gollum, Frodo, The One Ring, and Sam will all feature in a Borderless Scene. When matched up together, these will form a memorable moment from the books.

So far we know that the throwing of the ring into the fires of Mount Doom will be one, and The Battle of the Pennor Fields is another. However, as we’ve yet to see every card, we could see things like the Fellowship being formed at a later date.

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Box topper alternate version cards

There are some cards that will be found in the box toppers that are branded as Lord of the Rings Commander (LTC) but are totally Modern playable. These cards are alternative versions of other cards (similar to the Godzilla cards from Ikoria).

So far, we’ve only seen The Party Tree (The Great Henge), Bridge of Khazad-dûm (Ensnaring Bridge), and Valley of Gorgoroth (Wastelands).

Exclusive land cards

The land cards are really cute this time around. Each one will be a segment of the map drawn by Tolkien for the books.

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MTG LOTR land cards

The ultra-rare One Ring card

MTG Lord of the Rings One Ring card

In a bizarre thing to see unfold, the commercialization of these incredibly dangerous in-world items is very funny. Each card, outside of The One Ring, will function like Commander staple Sol Ring. As such, these ring cards will only be playable in Commander and even have a little LTC stamp in the corner.

LOTR MTG Sol Rings

There will be one The One Ring, 300 Eleven Sol Rings, 700 Dwarven Sol Rings and 900 Human Sol Rings. This lines up with the poem:

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Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,

Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,

Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,

One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

One Ring to rule them all,

One Ring to find them,

One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them

In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

Tolkien, J.R.R. The Fellowship of the Ring

All of the rings will be serialized in Collectors Boosters, but there are non-serialized versions of the cards alongside them in regular packs. These Elvish versions will be increased to 3000, 7000, and 9000 amongst Collectors Boosters for non-serialized editions.

Each of the Sol Rings will feature Elvish written on them, while The One Ring features Mordor’s Black Speech.

What formats will Lord of the Rings cards be legal in?

The following formats will allow the play of Lord of the Rings cards:

  • Modern
  • Legacy
  • Vintage
  • Historic (MTGA only)
  • Alchemy (MTGA only)
  • Commander
  • Pauper

Will LOTR come to Magic Arena?

Yes, the set is confirmed to be coming to Magic Arena. It’ll be available for play in Historic and Alchemy formats.

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