MTG Arena: State of the Game – Dominaria United

Posted in Magic Digital on August 31, 2022

By Megan O'Malley and Jay Parker

Dominaria United

Dominaria is where it all began . . . and from the look of things, it's only the beginning. A new set full of legendary cards, new mechanics alongside old favorites, a new Standard environment with renewal rewards, and a new . . . Phyrexian invasion. Uh oh.

View the cards, read the story, and get ready to unite and fight as Dominaria United arrives on MTG Arena!

Mechanics

Early this month, we enlisted the help of Matt Tabak to kick off our explanation of Dominaria United's mechanics, but for those of you who prefer to play in a more digital domain, here's a look at how things will play out ahead of the release on MTG Arena.

Read Ahead

Choose a chapter . . . something something lore counters . . . sacrifice after chapter three . . . and here's how that works on MTG Arena. When a Saga with read ahead enters the battlefield on MTG Arena, you'll be prompted with a browser to select just how many chapters you wish to read ahead.

MTG Arena battlefield showing the read ahead functionality with chapter selection

. . . but seriously, we hope you didn't miss the part where any chapters you skip over won't trigger. As a reminder, skipped chapters will appear grayed out if you decide to read ahead.

Enlist

Like exert, if you're attacking with a creature with enlist, you'll need to select the creature in order to pay the optional cost. If you choose to enlist, you'll select which creatures to tap after you declare your attacks. And no need to call a judge—MTG Arena won't let you declare more attackers with enlist than creatures you can tap to pay the optional cost.

MTG Arena battlefield showing options to attack or enlist for a card

Kicker

Yes, no, maybe so. Cards with more than one kicker cost are selected one at a time, giving you the option to pay for either of them, both of them, or neither of them. If you want to kick Archangel of Wrath twice, you'll select one of the kicker options, and then select the remaining kicker option.

MTG Arena battlefield showing kicker options for Archangel of Wrath

Domain

Cards with domain feature a badge that will dynamically update based on the number of basic land types (Plains, Island, Swamp, Mountain, and Forest) among lands you control, including nonbasic lands with more or more of those types, such as Blood Crypt.

MTG Arena battlefield showing Nishoba Brawler with domain color badge

Cards with domain also enter the battlefield with flying colors! In addition to the badge, the visual effect(s) surrounding the card will reflect the number of basic land types.

Mechanic Miscellany

  • Auto Tap considers life to be a resource and will prefer taking damage over sacrificing another permanent (such as a Treasure token).
  • Stun counters will show untap chains, with a newly updated visual effect.
  • If you manage to resolve Liliana of the Veil's -6 ability, target player's permanents will gain a "spinner" that allows you to separate them into two piles.

MTG Arena battlefield showing Liliana of the Veil card using its -6 ability

Rotation and Renewal 2022

As a reminder, with the release of Dominaria United comes our yearly Standard rotation and Renewal celebration! In case you missed it, we have an entire article dedicated to 2022 Standard Rotation that covers everything and anything you need to know.

Now that the key moment is almost here, we wanted to remind you of everything happening on September 1:

  • Zendikar Rising, Kaldheim, Strixhaven: School of Mages, and Dungeons & Dragons: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms sets will rotate out of Standard and Alchemy. Cards from these sets won't be playable in Alchemy or Standard anymore unless they get reprinted, although they will still be allowed in Explorer and Historic formats.
  • It's time to crack open that Renewal Egg! You'll received ten individual card rewards (ICRs), which will include one rare from each of the five non-rotating Standard and Alchemy sets, and another four rares plus one mythic rare from Dominaria United.
  • Set Mastery sets you up with extra rewards—at no additional cost! The Dominaria United Set Mastery will include additional Dominaria United card rewards, boosters, and Jump In!

To be eligible for renewal rewards, you must have created an account and logged in to MTG Arena prior to the start of maintenance on September 1. If you see the egg on your profile, you're all set!

Alchemical Spark(y)

Our favorite Planeswalker spark will be getting a quality-of-life upgrade with Dominaria United and will now auto-detect if your deck contains rebalanced cards. Just enter a bot match as usual, and Sparky will adjust accordingly.

Store Spotlight: Pet of the Month!

Dominaria is a place where past and present collide, and MTG Arena is no exception. While we didn't find any Lost Legends in our code archives, we still decided to celebrate in our own way. Starting in September, each month we'll be returning one previously available pet to the MTG Arena store.

And what better way to celebrate our return to Dominaria than the return of the Thopter pet? (Yes, we know this is a Kaladesh thopter, but it's the thought that counts!). The Thopter pet will be available once more with the release of Dominaria United, and will be available until October.

Welcome to the Arena Championship

On September 24, the new pinnacle of competitive play on MTG Arena will be happening for the very first time! $200,000 and two seats at next years' Magic World Championship await our top competitors in this two-day, invitation-only event.

Head over to Magic.gg for complete details on this event and more, including how you can qualify for both the Arena Championship 2 and the return of the Pro Tour!

Unite and Fight

Dominaria United releases on MTG Arena this Thursday, September 1. Keep an eye on our status page and follow @MTG_Arena for the latest updates and information on maintenance times.

Want in on the action before then? Check out our Dominaria United Early Access event, happening today on Twitch.tv!

Dominaria United Early Access on Twitch.tv August 31

Oh and, Ajani? It looks like you have something in your eye . . . s. Hey, wait a second . . .

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