Is Magic: The Gathering Taking A Turn For The Environmental Worst?

Recently, I wrote an article about the considered addition of NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, to Wizards of the Coast's premier trading card game, Magic: The Gathering. On such a note I want to clarify that I absolutely adore the game in all its forms, but feel that adding NFTs to the game's itinerary would be a horrible decision. But, this article is less about that idea and more about the physical issues in the game.

Right now, at big-box stores like Wal-Mart, Collector Boosters of Strixhaven: School of Mages, the latest set for Magic, are sitting in large, unwieldy boxes for players to pick up, purchase, and bring home. With this release, the trouble is that those packs are in the boxes at a 1:1 ratio, and no enfranchised collector I know would ever care to keep that packaging to collect dust on a shelf.

The packaging for the Collector Booster packs from Magic: The Gathering's Strixhaven: School of Mages expansion set. Note that the squares on the grid background are in inches.
The packaging for the Collector Booster packs from Magic: The Gathering's Strixhaven: School of Mages expansion set. Note that the squares on the grid background are in inches.

Look. I know that Wizards of the Coast has been trying to push for a cleaner, greener initiative for their card packaging. It's great that the decks in Commander 2021 had two options for packaging, one of which is much more environmentally friendly than the other and the latter of which even has counters to punch out of the cardboard for use. Those tokens will be used. But this Collector Booster thing is just plain wasteful.

The inside of the Strixhaven: School of Mages collector booster box for Magic: The Gathering. Inside is only one pack and a bit of cardboard to contain it.
The inside of the Strixhaven: School of Mages collector booster box for Magic: The Gathering. Inside is only one pack and a bit of cardboard to contain it.

Honestly, this is not an acceptable business practice by Wizards of the Coast, Hasbro, or whoever it happens to be that's in charge of packaging in the distribution of this item to stores like Wal-Mart or Target. As it stands, with all the talk of Magic: The Gathering NFTs and whatnot floating around the meeting tables at Hasbro, this sort of packaging should absolutely be changed back to a better form, such as what was seen with Zendikar Rising or Kaldheim, with respect to Collector Boosters. We don't need these boxes, not even for storage. An enfranchised player already likely buys bundles and booster boxes and has all the card storage they'd ever want. Why should they want to keep even more than one of these boxes? They can't even properly fit a deck inside them!

This box isn't "graduating with honors". There is nothing honorable about this level of waste.
This box isn't "graduating with honors". There is nothing honorable about this level of waste.

In short, this was a bad idea from the start on Wizards of the Coast's end of things. I bought this box strictly to review. At least the cards inside are cool.

What do you think about this analysis? Do you agree with my thoughts here? Let us know in the comments below!

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About Joshua Nelson

Josh Nelson is a Magic: The Gathering deckbuilding savant, a self-proclaimed scholar of all things Sweeney Todd, and, of course, a writer for Bleeding Cool. In their downtime, Josh can be found painting models, playing Magic, or possibly preaching about the horrors and merits of anthropophagy. You can find them on Twitter at @Burning_Inquiry for all your burning inquiries.
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