Magic Head Designer Mark Rosewater Reveals His Most Cherished Sets of All Time

Magic: The Gathering Head Designer, Mark Rosewater, shares about his most cherished sets.

Since the game's debut in summer of 1993, Magic: The Gathering has had a lot of expansions.  Ninety one, in fact, including Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty, which releases today.

For nearly as long as the game has been around, Mark Rosewater has been involved in the design and development of many of the game's cards and sets.  And, while some were more impactful or important to the game than others, he has a special few that he holds near and dear to him.  Of course, narrowing down a list of some 70 or so Magic sets in which he has (in one way or another) been involved can be a bit tricky.

"Of your children, which one do you love the most?" he jests during an interview with Magic Untapped.


But while there's something about every set that he truly does love, there are a few that stand out just a bit more than the others (and that includes one that has not yet been released).

One such set is Tempest, the first set Rosewater ever got to design (he had originally been hired by Wizards of the Coast as a developer).

"That was me proving that I could design and [it] really got me on the track of being a Magic designer," he recollects.  "So, that will always have a warm place in my heart for being (sort of) where I got my start."

Another Magic set high on Rosewater's list is Innistrad, which Rosewater considers to be the gold standard in how to do top-down set design.

"It might be (with help from my lead designer, Erik Lauer)...the best set that I've been involved with to have ever come out," says Rosewater.  "It's so solid."

Magic: The Gathering's head designer also listed and talked about a few other sets that he finds very important to him, including that yet-to-be-released one, as well as mentioning a few he's not so proud of.

You can learn what the rest of Rosewater's most cherished Magic sets are as well as his thoughts on each of them by watching the interview above (or on Magic Untapped's YouTube Page).

Barry White

Barry White is a longtime Magic: The Gathering player, having started in 1994 shortly before the release of 'Fallen Empires.' After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno, he went on to a 15-year journalism career as a writer, reporter, and videographer for three different ABC affiliate newsrooms.