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Magic: The Gathering — Spells of the Ancients pits players against the evil wizard Traiton and his minions for control of the mythical land of Shandalar and offers an additional arsenal of cards beyond those of its predecessor. As the first expansion package for Magic: The Gathering, 145 cards from the collectible card game are available for play in addition to changes in playing options and character design.
Card sets include Antiquities, Arabian Nights, Promotional and Unlimited from the printed CCG game. Each electronic card's artwork has been reproduced exactly and follows the same rules of play. Players walking across Shandalar can now challenge creatures, dual them and win cards like Urza's Chalice, Ring of Ma'ruf or the Yawgmoth Demon. Each card has an on-line help file to clear up any possible misconceptions about its use.
The quest for Shandalar is the same as in Magic: The Gathering but with new cards integrated. Five wizards head up the magical colleges of their respective colors: white, black, blue, red and green. Each minion defeated brings you one step closer to defeating the magicians themselves and the eventual clash with Traiton for the final battle. In addition to the Shandalar quest style of play, gamers can design personal decks to test in Gauntlet mode against a set number of computer players or face a single computer opponent in Duel mode. Finally, a Sealed Deck tournament mode offers the opportunity to mix and match various cards from unopened starter sets and booster packs.
The new Face Builder option allows creation of an avatar for use in every style of play. Sixteen male and female wizard templates, many costumes, skin shades and accessories offer a number of possible variations. Magic: The Gathering — Spells of the Ancients requires the original Magic: The Gathering disk for installation. No multiplayer options are available. ~ Christopher Allen, All Game Guide