Wednesday, 01 July 2020 19:38

COVID-19 causes more MTG product delays in North America

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The COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause delays for Magic: The Gathering players and local gaming stores in North America as delays continue to mount.

Most affected by the delay is Jumpstart, a new set designed with the limited format in mind.  The set, which is due for release July 17, is experiencing production delays.

"All WPN members in North America should expect delays and availability issues at launch," says Wizards of the Coast associate communications manager Nelson Brown via social media.  "We appreciate your understanding and we are working to resolve those issues as quickly as possible."

Jumpstart isn't the only upcoming Magic release falling prey to COVID-19 complications, however, as Core Set 2021 and Secret Lair: Ultimate Edition are also affected.

Due to delays in production, WotC says that stores can expect to receive fewer bundles of Core Set 2021 than originally planned.  The company hopes to have the issue resolved as soon as one week after the product's launch (July 3).

Furthermore, Core Set 2021 Planeswalker Decks and Arena Starter Kits will also be unavailable at launch.

"We're working to resolve the delay as quickly as possible," the company states.  "We'll provide updates via social media and through our distribution partners once that information becomes available."

Lucky for players, Core Set 2021 draft boosters, collector boosters, and prerelease packs are not affected by pandemic-related delays.

Some store owners and employees are taking news of the additional delays in stride.

"Every single vendor I deal with is seeing shipment issues, so it is completely understandable and I appreciate WotC being as upfront as they can be about the situation," says Tom Stoltzfus, owner of More Fun Comics and Games in Denton, Tex.

Others, such as Michael Epstein, the event coordinator at Omar's World of Comics & Hobbies in Lexington, Mass., are going as far as to ask for even more delays not just of Jumpstart, but other upcoming Magic: The Gathering sets as well.

"Please please please delay Jumpstart and ideally delay Double Masters," he comments on Facebook.  "We are flooded with product, and with these issues in supply chain, we aren't able to present a good face for any of this to our customers."

WotC has not stated if any of the other releases scheduled for this year, such as Zendikar RisingCommander Legends, and the aforementioned Double Masters will be delayed.