Ikoria, possibly more may get delayed further due to COVID-19


Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths is being delayed due to COVID-19 complications.

Late last month, Wizards of the Coast announced that the company was delaying the physical release of Magic: The Gathering's next Standard-legal set, Ikoria: Lair of the Behemoths.  The set, which had originally been planned for release April 17, was pushed back to May 15, 2020 in North America, Latin America, and Europe with the original release date still holding steady for Japan and the Asia Pacific region.

The delays were in response to the pandemic caused by COVID-19, also known as the Coronavirus, which (at the time of this article's publication) has nearly two million confirmed cases across 213 countries and has been attributed to have caused more than 123,000 deaths globally.

WotC has opened the door to possibly delay the set's release even further.

"[Another delay] has a lot to do with factors out of our control," said Magic: The Gathering designer Mark Rosewater on his Blogatog Tumblr blog.  "Trust me, we want to get the cards into your hands; we just want to make sure we're doing it safely."

It will be curious to see how any further delays may impact the release of Core Set 2021 (which is currently scheduled for July 2020) and other previously-announced Standard-legal sets, as well as the various Commander products planned throughout the year. We previously speculated that, while multiple physical releases may be delayed, the digital release schedule would remain unchanged.  So far, that has held true as with this Ikoria is still scheduled for an April 16 release on MTG Arena and Magic Online.

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.