Monday, July 23, 2012

Premium Deck Series discontinued? Here's what will fill it's place...

So the Premium Deck Series was discontinued as "not enough of you loved it," as stated at a panel by Mark Rosewater, Head Designer of MTG at Wizards of the Coast. This means the only PDS boxes out there are Slivers, Fire & Lightning, and Graveborn. I can't speak for the rest of you, but my Wal-Mart is stocking Fire & Lightning and Graveborn, with F&L being discounted about $10 from the $35 list price. Luckily I got the PDS: Slivers from Star City Games early this year, and I got the other two at my Wal-Mart, so I have all of them, and aside from the deck boxes, they are all in mint condition.

What is replacing them, you may ask? Wizards has decided that they will begin releasing Commander every year (Commander was originally released in summer 2011 as the multiplayer deck type, like we had Planechase in 2009 and 2012 and Archenemy in 2010). Unfortunately, since they did not have enough time to prepare new decks and create new cards since they work 2 years ahead of time, we will be getting what is called "Commander's Arsenal."

Included will be oversized cards (may be foil like in the original Commander decks, or they may be regular like the Helvault promos, their status in uncertain), regular cards with new art, foil cards that have never been in foil before, new card sleeves, and then "lots of Commander goodies."

The "goodies" from what I will assume will probably be Command Tower (in every deck), Sol Ring (also in every deck), Rupture Spire, possibly Oblivion Stone, and other assorted staples of the Commander series that were either in every box, or in more than one. I would also guess that there may be a couple dual lands like the Refuge land cards from Zendikar and others. Return to Ravnica may handle the bounce lands (return a land card you control to the owners hand and this comes in tapped but creates two mana of different colors) and shock lands (dual land that comes into play tapped unless you pay two life) but this has yet to be confirmed.

Commander's Arsenal will be released in November, thus filling in for the PDS release date. Commander decks should be released around November 2013 as Wizards will have had enough time to develop them. After that, new Commander decks/products will be released each November if I understand the news correctly.

So, what is your opinion on this? Are you sad that the Premium Deck Series is no longer being produced? Are you happy that there will be new Commander products each year? Post your opinions in the comments below.


  1. I think the premium decks were overpriced. They weren't selling, and commander decks are. The only worth in a premium deck was picking apart the lands and single cards. Nobody wants a foil "Chain Lighting", big whoop. Event decks are a much better deal, as you actually get good cards that if you bought alone would cost as much as the event deck itself.

    1. All very valid points. The only way the PDS cards could be used is in the respective formats each normal card belongs to, in EDH/Commander or playing casually with friends.

      I honestly only played using the Slivers Deck because all my friends hate slivers so I decided I wanted a sliver deck to beat them with. The other two were just so I had them as part of my collection.

      I really like EDH/Commander so I'm happy they are adding in more Commander products. Of course, this asks the question, what takes the place of Commander during the summer rotation? (2009: Planechase, 2010: Archenemy, 2011: Commander, 2012: Planechase) If this is in fact a pattern and 2013 is another set of Archenemy boxes, then I wonder what 2014 will bring us...


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