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Standard and Alchemy Rotation

MTG Arena Alchemy Rotation Guide

An in-depth guide of how Alchemy rotation works, what cards are currently legal, schedule of upcoming sets, and more.

Alchemy is a digital constructed format exclusive to Magic: The Gathering Arena. Each year, cards rotate out, following a 2 yearly rotation cycle of allowing cards from the 8 most recent sets. This in-depth guide explains how rotation works, what cards are currently legal in Alchemy, schedule of upcoming sets, and more.

As of May 7, 2023, the tabletop adjacent Standard format rotates every three years (up to 12 major expansions) instead of two (up to 8 expansions). Alchemy will continue to follow the classic 2 yearly rotation cycle.

Read about the update in more detail with this article.
Standard and Alchemy Rotation

What Sets are Currently in Alchemy?

Standard SetsAlchemy Sets
Innistrad: Midnight Hunt (MID)Alchemy: Innistrad
Innistrad: Crimson Vow (VOW)Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate (HBG)
Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty (NEO)Alchemy: Kamigawa
Streets of New Capenna (SNC)Alchemy: New Capenna
Dominaria United (DMU)Alchemy: Dominaria
The Brothers’ War (BRO)Alchemy: The Brothers’ War
Phyrexia: All Will Be One (ONE)Alchemy: Phyrexia
March of the Machine (MOM)The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth (LTR)
March of the Machine: The Aftermath (MAT)Arena Base Set (ANB)

What Sets will be Rotating Out of Alchemy in 2023?

The next rotation happens in September 5, 2023 with the release of Wilds of Eldraine four Standard sets leaving Alchemy (MID, VOW, NEO, and SNC), its Alchemy adjacent minisets and Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate (HBG). The table below shows the new Alchemy format after rotation.

Rotates out September 2023Rotates out September 2024Rotates out September 2025
Innistrad: Midnight Hunt (MID)Dominaria United (DMU)Wilds of Eldraine
Innistrad: Crimson Vow (VOW)Alchemy: DominariaThe Lost Caverns of Ixalan
Alchemy: InnistradThe Brothers’ War (BRO)Winter 2024 Set “Polo”
Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty (NEO)Alchemy: The Brothers’ WarSpring 2024 Set “Quilting”
Alchemy: KamigawaPhyrexia: All Will Be One (ONE)
Streets of New Capenna (SNC)Alchemy: Phyrexia
Alchemy: New CapennaMarch of the Machine (MOM)
Alchemy Horizons: Baldur’s Gate (HBG)March of the Machine: The Aftermath (MAT)
The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-Earth (LTR)

What is Alchemy Rotation?

Four Magic sets are released (one approximately every three months) and added to Standard each year. There may be an Alchemy set to accompany these sets a month or two after their release. This means up to 12 Standard expansions, plus supplementary sets, will be legal in Alchemy and sets will be legal for a minimum of two years. This happens as soon as the patch is released on MTG Arena and Magic Online. Tabletop Magic follows the official release schedule, which happens on a Friday a week later.

Alchemy follows the old Standard rotation rules – every two years. However, it introduces additional digital-only cards with each expansion, existing cards are rebalanced on a regular basis, and does not have a banlist. More information can be found here.


Rebalancing and Banned Cards

Alchemy features some rebalanced versions of existing Standard cards, or adjustment of existing digital-only cards to shake up the meta for digital play. As such, there are no banned cards. Find the full list here.


What Happens to my Rotated Cards?

Cards that rotate out of Alchemy remain in your collection, and MTG Arena supports events and play queues that allow players to use cards from rotated sets in non-rotating formats such as Historic, Explorer, and in certain events.

They may be used in Standard if they have not yet rotated or if they are re-released in future sets (as “reprints”). For example, this includes commonly reprinted cards such as Negate and Duress.

Do note that digital-only cards will be available only in Historic, and rebalanced cards can be either banned or be reverted back to their original tabletop version.


Rotation Preparation

Closer to the time of rotation, MTG Arena may hold special events and rewards to help “renew” players’ collections for the new Alchemy environment. If there are events and rewards, they’ll be from sets that do not rotate.

Budget and Rotation Proof Decks

We will be updating our budget decks and they will be made rotation proof. Check back soon!

Events

There will be not be any scheduled Limited events (Draft or Sealed) for sets rotating out of Standard. Quick Draft and Sealed events will use sets starting from Innistrad: Midnight Hunt forward.

Quick Draft players will be playing and collecting only cards that can continue to be used in Alchemy or Standard in the fall.

Jump In!

The packets in the Jump In! event will also be rehauled for the new year. Packets using themes from the rotating sets will be retired, while remaining packets will be revised to contain only cards that won’t be rotating out.

This is in addition to the usual addition of new packets that will feature content from Alchemy Horizons: Baldur's Gate.

Individual Card Rewards (ICRs)

Players will no longer receive ICRs from sets that will be rotating out of Standard from daily wins or Standard events. Cards from rotating sets will be added to Historic ICRs.

Booster Packs and Wildcard Crafting

You can still redeem Wildcards and purchase packs from the rotating sets, but there will be an in-game reminder and confirmation message to let players know that the card is due to be rotated out soon.

When you attempt to buy packs, craft a card, or purchase a card style for cards that are rotating out, the game will give you a reminder that these cards will soon rotate, and we will ask if you still want to complete the transaction. You’re still welcome to, of course – this is just to make sure that you’re getting what you want.

New Player Decks

The introductory two-color decks decks that players receive as part of the tutorial and new player experience will be updated. For existing players, the intention is to recreate these updated decklists for existing players so everyone will have access to decks that are Standard-legal. If these decks contain cards that are not currently a part of your collection, you will be granted them.

These decks will feature only cards from Dominaria United and forward, so they will remain legal in both Alchemy and Standard after rotation.

New players will receive these new decks from the Color Challenge and the onboarding quest line. As always, when a new player unlocks one of these decks for the first time, they will also receive all cards from that deck in their collection.

For existing players, these decks will simply appear in the Starting Decks folder in the Decks tab. Players who collected previous new player decks will receive any cards from the new decks that they haven’t already collected as a grant to make sure they can take these decks out for a spin.

Renewal Rewards

Players may receive bonus gifts and rewards that consist of cards only from the new Standard format, to kick-start their post-rotation collection.

Closer to rotation, players will see the “Renewal Egg” on their Profile screen. This is both a reminder that rotation is coming up and a package containing some special rewards that will help kick off the new year! Hovering over the Egg will show how much time is left until rotation when the Egg will open.

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