Magic: The Gathering's New Set Is Removing a Card Thanks to the Coronavirus Pandemic

When major world events happen, sometimes they have an unintended impact on popular culture. Such is the case with the latest set for Magic: The Gathering. The Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths set features a handful of cards based on popular characters from Toho's Godzilla franchise. The set will include 16 English cards in total (with three in Japanese), including fan favorites such as Godzilla, and Spacegodzilla. Unfortunately, the latter has caused a bit of an issue for Wizards of the Coast. In Godzilla films and media, Spacegodzilla has an attack called the "Corona Beam," so cards featuring the creature read "Spacegodzilla, Death Corona."

Spacegodzilla card
(Photo: Wizards of the Coast)

Naturally, when the cards were initially developed, the maker of Magic: The Gathering had no way of knowing how the cards would end up reading months later during an international pandemic, but the current world situation has made that a bit more problematic. Obviously, the whole thing is an incredibly unfortunate error, and Wizards of the Coast is already making efforts to rectify the problem. A new printing of the card will be released, which will now read "Space Godzilla, Void Invader." However, it seems it will be too late for the company to stop the card's first printing, so these will end up in the hands of some collectors.

Ironically enough, the situation will likely result in the "Death Corona" version of the Spacegodzilla card quickly becoming a bit of a collector's item. Some Magic fans on Twitter are already pledging to purchase the card specifically for the reference. It's a bit unsurprising, as items like this tend to do just that, but it also seems like the kind of situation that Wizards of the Coast was hoping to avoid altogether.

The Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths set isn't due out until May 15th, but the set will be available in Magic: The Gathering Arena starting on April 16th. The "Death Corona" version of the card will not appear in Arena.


Do you think Wizards of the Coast should have changed the card? Are you happy to see Godzilla characters appearing in Magic: The Gathering? Let us know in the comments or share directly on Twitter at @Marcdachamp to talk all things gaming!