With Easter fast approaching and the article we did the other day on video game Easter eggs, we thought we should look at the most popular collectible card game on the planet, Magic: the Gathering, and highlight some hidden gems you might not know exist.
What's in a name?
Nobody likes a name dropper. Nobody, that is, unless that name dropper is Magic artist Ron Spencer. In a number of his earlier Magic: the Gathering cards you can find a name hidden in plain sight. Take the Fallen Empires card Goblin Grenade for example:
Did you see it? Take another look and focus on the goblin's spear. Look closely and you'll see the spear's prongs spell out the name Mike. So, who is Mike? He's a friend of Spencer's. And Mike isn't the only one to get this treatment.
Take a look at the above Order of the Ebon Hand card (also from Fallen Empires). Beginning with the cleric's blood-soaked weapon and continuing into the vapors beyond it can be seen the name Josh. We're not so sure who Josh is, but judging by the card's abilities we're guessing he is (was?) a white creature.
Anson Maddocks has a good reputation for high-quality artwork. He's also rather well known for some pretty gruesome and flat-out questionable ones, too. To that end, take a look at Living Wall.
If you didn't see it the first time, don't worry. Many don't. While the art is pretty yuck to begin with thanks to the mangled teeth, pockets of puss, and whatnot, but if you look into the thing's "eyes" you'll notice they're not eyes at all. Rather, it's a transparent ouch holding what appears to be a fetus. Nice, eh?
What goes best with red? More red of course. That mentality is front-and-center in the Matt Cavota illustrated card from Odyssey, Dwarven Shrine.
Within the shrine you should right away notice a number of iconic red spells from Magic's past. Front-and-center is a talon from the Shivan Dragon. To it's right is Ball Lightning and to it's right is the Hammer of Bogardan. Even Chaos Charm and the Rukh Egg make appearances in the background. In a way, Dwarven Shrine is kind of a five-for-one deal.
Doing it Tedin style
Take a look at Grip of Chaos, a rather underwhelming rare from Scourge. It's artwork is done by the very talented Mark Tedin and Mark was kind enough to throw in some bonus artwork within the picture.
Did you see it (or, rather, them)? If not, look along the top of the artwork. On the right you'll see Tetravus, a card Tedin did all the way back in Antiquities. On the left, Dark Sphere, a nifty zero-casting-cost artifact from The Dark that Tedin also illustrated. Apparently, they got caught up in the storm.
The gang's all here
Beginning with Weatherlight and going all the way through to the Odyssey block the bulk of Magic's story revolved around the planeswalker Urza, the crew of the Weatherlight, and The Legacy. The Legacy was comprised of a bunch of artifacts (and one human) ranging from the ho-hum Touchstone to the iconic silver golem Karn himself. And if you look at the original Exodus artwork for the blue card-drawing enchantment Treasure Trove...
...you'll notice that Michael Sutfin included a number of them in his artwork including not only the two previously-mentioned cards but also the Skyshaper, Thran Tome, and (ironically enough) the Null Rod. We've often wondered why the artifacts of The Legacy included the Null Rod seeing as it makes all of the components (Karn included) innate. Only Gerrard Capashed (not pictured) is immune to the rod's abilities.
Hang-ten on for four damage
While you might think you'd be hanging ten on a blue card, but Flame Wave is far from blue. Just the opposite in fact, an yet...
Take a look near the center of the underside of the wave and you'll see what appears to be a guy surfing on the magma. We're assuming he (she?) either has protection from red or suicidal tendencies. Perhaps that's what the Moses-like character on the bottom right is pointing at.
What are some M:tG Easter eggs you like?