A First Look At Magic the Gathering: Bloomburrow

The world of Bloomburrow is a unique one; there are no Humans on the plane at all. No Elves, Goblins, or Kor either. In fact, most of the fantasy tropes you might come to expect from a Magic set are either missing or changed dramatically. Instead, Bloomburrow is a plane filled with some of the smallest heroes Magic has ever seen, mice, birds, bats, and foxes, all working together in harmony against greater forces beyond their control.

Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow card Mable, Heir to Cragflame
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Bloomburrow Is Something New

A Whole New Plane to Explore

Bloomburrow takes place in a region of the plane called Valley, where all sorts of little creatures called animal-folk live and thrive together. Mable, the noble mouse-folk that we’ve already seen on other cards, and all the other animal folk unite to fend off more predatory creatures called Calamities. These massive creatures are more force of nature than animals, with each one embodying a different season.

Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Maha, Its Feathers Night
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

The story starts with the appearance of Maha, Its Feather Night, a huge owl that turns the day to night when it flies. Maha’s egg was stolen, and in anger, it descends into the Valley to retrieve its egg. Though his reasons are unknown, Glarb, Calamity’s Augur, a king from another city called Fountainport, worked behind the scenes to steal the egg and set events in motion.

Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Glarb Calamitys Augur
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

We mentioned before that there are no Humans in Bloomburrow, but that doesn’t mean a few don’t show up. Ral Zarek is the star planeswalker in the set, though he looks a little different this time around. He’s still in his classic Izzet coloring, but this time he’s an Otter. Turns out, when Humans (and presumably other non-Human characters) visit Bloomburrow, they are turned into adorable critters which is amazing.

Mice and Otters aren’t the only animal-folk to show up in Bloomhaven, there are ten different kindred groups to follow, each one with their own color identity and mechanics designed just for them. The different groups are:

  • W/U – Bird – Gives other creatures flying.
  • U/B – Rat – Bringing back the Threshold mechanic from the Odyssey block.
  • B/R – Lizard – Cares about dealing damage in a turn to give bonuses.
  • R/G – Raccoon – The largest of the creatures, rewards spending lots of mana.
  • G/W – Rabbit – Goes wide with tons of tokens.
  • W/B – Bat – Has abilities that trigger from gaining life.
  • U/R – Otter – Classic instant and sorcery shenanigans. 
  • B/G – Squirrel – Makes the most out of the graveyard and Food tokens.
    • They worship Calamity beasts.
  • R/W – Mouse – Valiant keyword, works like Heroic but triggers from spells and abilities.
    • Mouse-folk often work with fireflies to enhance their abilities
  • G/U – Frog – Blinking and bouncing mechanics just like frogs.
    • Frogs can predict Calamity beast patterns to help save villages.

New Mechanics Coming to Magic

Bloomburrow Brings Some Twists to Old Mechanics

There are quite a few new mechanics on Bloomburrow, as well as two returning ones. Some might seem familiar to ones we have had in the past, but with a new twist. 


Found on plenty of Mouse cards, the Offspring mechanic is kind of like the Squad mechanic from the Warhammer 40,000 Universes Beyond set. When you cast a spell with Offspring, you can pay an additional cost, creating a 1/1 token copy of it when it enters the battlefield. 


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Seedglaive Mentor
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

A subtle upgrade of the Heroic ability from Theros, Valiant is a triggered ability that happens when you cast a spell or have an ability that targets a creature with Valiant. This ability only triggers the first time each turn.


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Parting Gust
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Gift is a rather interesting mechanic that lets you pick and choose how you want to cast spells with it. Gifting comes with a specific action, like Gift a tapped Fish on Parting Gust. When you cast the spell, you have to ‘promise a gift’, creating a 1/1 tapped blue Fish token for them if you do. Whether or not you gifted your opponent something then changes how you can resolve the spell.


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Muerra Trash Tactician
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

If you love ramping then expend is right up your alley. All you have to do to trigger a expend ability is spend mana equal to the associated value. Expend can trigger on any turn, but does require you to spend that mana on casting spells, not on paying for abilities. 


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Camellia the Seedmiser
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Exclusive to the Squirrels of the Valley, Forage lets you put either your graveyard or Foods to work. To Forage, you have to exile three cards from your graveyard or sacrifice a Food token as well as paying a mana cost.


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Tidecaller Mentor
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Back from the Odyssey block comes Threshold, an ability that triggers once you have seven or more cards in your graveyard. Threshold can be a static, replacement, activated, or triggered ability, so it can be pretty flexible in games. 


Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Artists Talent
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

First found in the Dungeons & Dragons: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms set, Classes look a little different in Bloomburrow. While they have similar functions and workings as previous Classes, Bloomburrow’s are more designed around life in the Valley.

Modal Spells

Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Season of Weaving
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Each of these spells are based on a different season on Bloomburrow, though they’re seasons you might not be used to. The modal spells are rather unique. Each mode has a different number of paw prints associated with it, and you can pick the same mode multiple times, but the total number of paw prints you can spend is five. For Season of Weaving, for example, you can choose to draw five cards, since drawing one costs just one paw print, or you can choose the second and third options since their combined value also equals five. 

Special Frames And More

Along With a Few Special Guests

Bloomburrow comes with a few different borders and frames to collect. There are borderless raised foil variants, which all come in anime-stylized artwork. Then there’s the showcase woodland frames, which are special cards that highlight the whimsical nature of the set. If you look at Kastral, the Windcrested, you can see that each side of the card’s frame is dedicated to each of the card’s colors, with the pattern being similar but with unique differences for each color. The white side has feathers, tree branches, and flowers, while the blue side has what looks like a lotus, some cattails, and more ivy-looking plants.

Magic: The Gathering Bloomburrow Mabel Heir to Cragflame showcase woodland
Credit: Wizards of the Coast

Working on several pieces in Bloomburrow is David Peterson, best known for his work on the fantastic Mouse Guard series. The Eisner Award winner worked to incorporate the more detailed design of Mable with his own style to bring the feel of the Mouse Guard series to Magic.

Calamity beasts get their own special variant with the borderless field notes cards. These are only found in Collector Boosters and break down the beasts as if you were looking at an anatomy book.

One of the last collectible cards in Bloomburrow are Imagine: Critters, which takes past planeswalkers and imagines them as if they were from the plane. Tamiyo, Field Researcher and Jace the Mind Sculptor are two planeswalkers that get this treatment, but it is unknown if others will join the ranks of bunnies and foxes on Bloomburrow.

Play Magic With Your Friends in Commander

Four New Decks to Experiment With

Four Commander decks are joining the Bloomburrow fun, with each deck designed around a different theme and creature type. We have all the face commanders available for you to check out and a little blurb about the general strategy each deck will take. 

Animated Army is a raccoon-themed deck led by Bello, Bard of the Brambles. Bello turns all your non-aura and non-equipment enchantments and artifacts into 4/4s that are indestructible with haste and all draw you a card when they deal combat damage to a player. The next deck is Family Matters, a blue, red, and white deck that features Zinnia, Valley’s Voice as the face commander. This deck focuses on tokens and small creatures, particularly those with a base power of one. 

After those two comes Peace Offering, a green, white, and blue deck that is based around the group hug style, of giving your opponents bonuses to later give you even more power. And finally, there’s Squirreled Away, led by Hazel of the Rootbloom. This green and black deck has a heavy Squirrel kindred theme and has a bit of a focus on Calamity creatures as well.

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