Magic the Gathering is a pretty big deal around the GamesRadar office. So you can bet that we're stoked for the annual installment of Duels of the Planeswalkers, which is now an even better gateway drug to the magnificently complex CCG.
The most significant--and exciting--addition in Magic 2014 is the introduction of Sealed play. Previous games revolved around pre-constructed decks that focused on a central theme--but that doesn't provide the player with the creative rush that comes from piecing together your own masterpiece. Sealed mode changes all that, a format where you crack open six packs (with a pleasantly familiar foil-ripping animation before your cards are revealed) and construct a 40-card deck using whatever you have in front of you from the 180-plus cards in the set.
Sealed presents an entirely different avenue of play--you won't know what you're working with till it's done, and you may stumble upon card synergies that would've never occurred to you otherwise. You'll also, at long last, be able to tweak your land counts--a much-requested feature that lets you further tune your deck to be an efficient machine or a five-color magnum opus. Those who'd rather just get straight into the game will appreciate the auto-build button, which entrusts your deck construction to the AI. From there, you can take the deck online as with any other mode.
In essence, Magic 2014 - Duels of the Planeswalkers is the series' biggest upgrade, encouraging players to transition to the wonderful (and rewarding) world of deck-building. You'll be able to get your hands on this enticing new set before the release of the Magic 2014 Core Set on July 19th. Look for it on your PC, PS3, 360, Android, and iPad devices. For more info, check out the following slides!
The classic Campaign mode returns; this time, you're assisting hot-headed planeswalker Chandra Nalaar on a mysterious quest for revenge
As you progress through the single-player, you'll face a variety of Encounter decks themed around the traits of the current dimensional plain, like zombies, cultists, and angry mobs in Innistrad
You'll see over 50 cards from the Magic 2014 Core Set, including this beastly, brand-new Demon
At the onset, you'll have two free slots for Sealed deck construction, which you can supplement with three additional booster packs as a reward for beating the campaign. Additional deck slots will be available for $1.99--far cheaper than a real-life round
Expect to see plenty of Dragons and Slivers in Magic 2014, though Planeswalker cards are still off the table lest they complicate things for newcomers