Mar 24

D&D and MTG: Synergy Part 1

A few days back, I had a half-formed idea. What if I bought a pack of MTG cards and used the cards in that pack as inspiration to design a session or start  a new D&D campaign?   I didn’t think it through very well but threw the idea out on Twitter to see if anyone else had done something similar.  The response was more than I had expected. Several people responded back that they had either done that, done something similar or would be really interested in hearing about how it went.

That decided it for me. I would try it and and post my process to share.  If anyone is keeping up with our actual play podcasts you’ll know we are doing a DnDNext Play test but it’s a very non-traditional game. No magic (Divine or Arcane) and a mix of technology.  For this experiment I’d like to try and keep things simple. At least for the initial test.

We’ve already decided that once the new play test packet comes out  we wanted to do a one-shot play test with the new classes (Ranger, Paladin and Druid) so more than likely that’s what i’ll be designing. We’re also going to start with 10th level characters. Our current game the PC’s have just leveled up to 6th level.

In this first post I’m going to lay out the rules I’ll follow and the cards I’m starting with.

1. I decided to get 2 packs of cards instead of one. I thought this would give me more wiggle room to design a more fleshed out story.

2. Since i’m using 2 packs I can choose not to use any 2 cards out of each pack, in case something just doesn’t make sense (for me at least).

3. I got 2013 core packs. I know the other packs are heavily themed and at least for this first go I wanted the freedom to come up with my own theme and not forced into one.


Here are the cards I’m using.

Pack 1

Mogg Flunkies – Creature – Goblin: red

Harbor serpent – Creature – Serpent: blue

Dark Favor – Enchantment – Aura: black

Kraken Hatchling – Creature – Kraken: blue

Fire Elemental – Creature – Elemental: red

Mark of the Vampire – Enchantment – Aura: black

Pacifism – Enchantment – Aura: white

Bountiful harvest – Sorcery: green

Ravenous rats – Creature – rat; black

Faerie Invaders – creature – Faerie Rogue: blue

Torch Fiend – creature – Devil: red

Phyrexian Hulk – artifact creature – Golem: Colorless

Courtly Provocateur – Creature – Human Wizard: blue

Door to Nothingness – Artifact – Colorless

Land – Mountain


Pack 2

Disentomb – Sorcery : black

Guardians of Akrasa – creature – human solider: white

Negate – Instant: blue

Warclamp Mastiff – Creature – Hound: white

Deadly Recluse – Creature – Spider: green

Sign in blood – sorcery: black

Divine Verdict – Instant: white

Walking Corpse – Creature – Zombie: black

Elvish Visionary – Creature – Elf Shaman: Green

Craterize – Sorcery: red

Knight of Infamy – creature – Human Knight: black

Fungal Sprouting – Sorcery: green

Flames of the Firebrand – Sorcery: red

Thragtusk – Creature – Beast: green

Land – Swamp


So that’s what I have to work with.


Stay tuned for part 2 where I’ll share what I come up with and then Part 3 will either be a podcast of the game or a recap of the game with analysis of how the game went.


Michael – AKA Mumbles.


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1 ping

    • Jonathon on August 10, 2013 at 12:55 am
    • Reply

    So you spent about $8.00-$10.00 on a list of wandering monsters that you could of just looked them up in the monster manual for free?

    At least you got some nice artwork.



    1. Jonathon,
      There was a little more to it than that, but you are right. We could have cracked open a monster manual and had a similar experience. I think, though, that the lands, artifacts, enchainments and such did add to the story we built and the MM wouldn’t have supplied that.


  1. […] the progenitor of Michael’s idea in the form of an article posted back in March 2013 titled D&D and MTG: Synergy Part 1. If you head on over to the RPG Academy’s Youtube channel you will find videos […]

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