Magic: The Gathering's Strixhaven Preview Week Kicks Off Today

Magic: The Gathering has begun its preview season today for Strixhaven: School of Mages, their next upcoming expansion set, and we are very excited to show you just a few things that were revealed! Strixhaven is a magical university set on the plane of existence called Arcavios. We don't know much about Arcavios just yet beyond the school and its five colleges, but what we do know is quite cool. Let's get oriented!

Promotional art for Strixhaven: School of Mages, an upcoming set for Magic: The Gathering. Art by Lindsey Look.
Promotional art for Strixhaven: School of Mages, an upcoming set for Magic: The Gathering. Art by Lindsey Look.

To give you a few points of reference:

  • There are five colleges of magic within the university of Strixhaven. Each one specializes in an enemy-colored pair of magical studies.
  • Lorehold, the white-red college, specializes in history and has Spirit mascots who are literally ghosts of past historical figures in-world. These spirits teach students about the history surrounding events in the world, possibly even the Multiverse at large.
  • Prismari, the blue-red college, focuses on the visual and performing arts and has very brightly-colored Elemental mascots. The Prismari students are quite exuberant in most everything, erring towards the flashy extra-ness reminiscent of real-world art and its artists.
  • Quandrix, the blue-green college, is a math-oriented college. Their Fractal mascots are literally made of math, and their motto is "Math is Magic", which seems pretty fair considering how practically everything is magic in the Magic Multiverse.
  • Witherbloom is the black-green college, and has been described as a collective of "goth Biology students". Their mascots are known as Pests, and their motto, "Get your hands dirty," makes sense as the students learn to utilize the essence of the soul to power their spells.
  • Finally, Silverquill, the black-white college, is a college of writers, poets, and most likely future bureaucrats. Their mascots are diminutive ink-based elementals, and as a college, they are known both for a sharp style and a sharper wit.
The Strixhaven campus map, as illustrated by Luiza Laffitte. This stylized interpretation shows the five colleges as well as the Biblioplex and the Wizards' Tower Stadium.
The Strixhaven campus map, as illustrated by Luiza Laffitte. This stylized interpretation shows the five colleges as well as the Biblioplex and the Mage Tower Stadium.

In addition to the five colleges, Strixhaven has a massive library, featuring what people claim is every spell ever cast. Furthermore, there is a stadium on campus that houses tournaments between the colleges of a game known as Mage Tower. Therein, players will attempt to steal the opposing side's mascot and bring it to their side of the field, using any number of spells, so long as they do not cause harm to the target. Everything else is fair game!

Strixhaven was founded by five Elder Dragons, who we as players know very little about so far. However, while we don't know much about these founders, we know a bit about some of the university faculty. Some of these faces may be familiar from Gavin Verhey's more recent videos on YouTube, but we have the card information here for you now!

Adrix and Nev, Twincasters, the professors from the "Quantum Quandrix" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Andrew Mar.
Adrix and Nev, Twincasters, the professors from the "Quantum Quandrix" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Andrew Mar.
Breena, the Demagogue, the professor from the "Silverquill Statement" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Simon Dominic.
Breena, the Demagogue, the professor from the "Silverquill Statement" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Simon Dominic.
Osgir, the Reconstructor, the professor from the "Lorehold Legacies" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Victor Adame Minguez.
Osgir, the Reconstructor, the professor from the "Lorehold Legacies" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Victor Adame Minguez.
Willowdusk, Essence Seer, the professor from the "Witherbloom Witchcraft" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Jesper Ejsing.
Willowdusk, Essence Seer, the professor from the "Witherbloom Witchcraft" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Jesper Ejsing.
Zaffai, Thunder Conductor, the professor from the "Prismari Performance" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Dmitry Burmak.
Zaffai, Thunder Conductor, the professor from the "Prismari Performance" Commander 2021 deck. Art by Dmitry Burmak.

Another huge aspect of the Strixhaven set is the introduction of the Mystical Archives. In every booster product (draft, set, and collector), there will be at least one Mystical Archive card included as part of the pack. There's always one in Draft Boosters or Set Boosters (foils notwithstanding), but multiple in Collector Booster packs. They will be available as uncommons, rares, and mythic rares, with the uncommon cards being within the current Standard season (but rotating with the most recent non-Mystical Archive printing).

Time Warp, a card from the Mystical Archives. Art by Dominik Mayer.
Time Warp, a card from the Mystical Archives. Art by Dominik Mayer.

In addition, there will be an alternate-art version of every card in the Mystical Archives, solely found in Japanese booster packs of any kind (at a 50/50 pull rate) and in Collector Boosters everywhere (with one guaranteed and the potential to pull more in a pack). These cards' artworks are mainly based on traditional Japanese art.

The Japanese alternate art of Duress, a card within the Mystical Archives of Strixhaven. Art by romiy.
The Japanese alternate art of Duress, a card within the Mystical Archives of Strixhaven. Art by romiy.

All in all, this new Magic: The Gathering set looks to be remarkable in what it can do both for new players and die-hard collectors alike. Do you agree? Are you excited for this set? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

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.