Guildpact Zoom-Ins

Posted in Arcana on December 20, 2006

By Wizards of the Coast

R&D's creative team plus a Magic artist is a powerful and sometimes subtle combination. Once design and development construct a card's mechanic, the creative team weaves it conceptually into the setting, and the artist realizes that vision in paint and pixels. In the course of all this collaboration, the Magic card gets flooded in rich detail, which all gets tucked into a few square inches of cardboard. We'd like to take a moment to zoom in on a few of the more subtle Guildpact art pieces so you can appreciate some of that detail.

Vacuumelt
Vacuumelt art by Nottsuo

Vacuumelt depicts some creatures getting unsummoned, which is pretty clear at Vacuumelt. You might not have been able to tell that these creatures are Boros war titans. Check out the inset to see the (slightly warped) Boros symbol on one of their shoulders, and compare with the concept sketch from the Ravnica style guide.

Gruul War Plow
Gruul War Plow art by Martina Pilcerova; Borborygmos art by Todd Lockwood

Gruul War Plow -- it's a big, honking plow flanked by all kinds of ragtag Gruul warriors -- check. But did you see who's at the controls? Okay, there are no controls on a Gruul war plow, but did you see who's sitting on top of the thing? It's a certain Borborygmos...

Yore-Tiller Nephilim
Yore-Tiller Nephilim art by Jeremy Jarvis

And there's no inset here -- we just wanted you to see Yore-Tiller Nephilim up close and personal. It's a titanic, ancient god from Ravnica's past, and it's made of enormous, petrified chunks of Ravnica itself, great hunks of which crack off as it strides down the citified remnants of its former wilderness home.

But did you notice the grim touch of the bodies hung from cranelike projections on its upper rim? This relates to its reanimation mechanic, sure, but it's also symbolic of its ire. These ancient gods did not return because they smelled the Folger's crystals. They did not return because it's springtime in Ravnica, and their winter's bear-nap is over. No, they returned to express their immortal rage.

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