Missing MTG Card Printing Finally Appears 3 Years Later!

In recent years, Wizards of the Coast have been doing more crossovers. Some of these crossovers are featured in their own sets, such as Lord of the Rings. Other cards that feature ideas outside the Magic: the Gathering world appear as promotional cards. As Commander Masters is underway, one card stood out as a particularly interesting reprint. Zilortha is Strength Incarnate. Zilortha – at least in the form its stats have been designed – is not a “new” card. It is the very first time that the card has been featured as Zilortha.

While that may sound confusing, this card was actually debuted as “Godzilla, King of the Monsters.” This means that Zilortha originally appeared as a promo from the set Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths, specifically highlighting the Godzilla franchise. Godzilla, King of Monsters’ stats and abilities are identical to Zilortha. Zilortha is even mentioned on the card Godzilla: King of Monsters in small print below the title Godzilla: King of Monsters. While Commander Masters is featuring specifically Zilortha, including with new art, it’s worth looking at how Godzilla, King of the Monsters originated in the world of MTG.

Godzilla Series

Bio-Quartz, Spacegodzilla

Godzilla was designed as an alternate version of the cards that appear in Ikoria, Lair Of Behemoths. Wizards of the Coast partnered directly with Toho Corporation, the Japanese film studio that created Godzilla.

Ikoria Lair of Behemoths featured alternate art treatments for 18 cards in the main set. Each card had a Godzilla-themed title, was borderless, included the original name underneath the Godzilla name (and mechanically was the same card), and was featured as box toppers as well as full-art variations obtainable in main set.

The 18 cards were divided into two series: the Japanese and the core. The Japanese series only printed three cards, and the other cards were in English. This made the three last cards a lot rarer.

Wizards of the Coast’s Godzilla crossover marked the first release of a Universes beyond with a new intellectual property. It was also the first time alternate treatment for a card from a main-set set was introduced. The 18 cards from the Godzilla promo were also available in Ikoria’s main set. The catch, however, is there’s actually 19 Godzilla cards.

Godzilla, the King of Monsters was the last card NOT included in the main set of Ikoria Lair of Behemoths. This Godzilla card is actually a promo item. Let’s zoom in on Godzilla, King of the Monsters, the last remaining card in the Godzilla series.

Read more: The most expensive Commander Masters cards spoiled (so far)

Buy a Box Promo

Godzilla, King of the Monsters

Godzilla King of Monsters was actually the Buy a Box promo (not to be confused with a Box Topper!) Promo for Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths. All cards in the Godzilla series had Godzilla names placed above the card’s original names. In the Buy a Box Promo, Godzilla King of Monsters was also known as Zilortha Strength Incarnate. However, this variant never appeared in the universe. Zilortha, Strength Incarnate, was not included in the Collector Booster Packs of Godzilla, King of Monsters.

The only difference between Godzilla, King of Monsters’ Buy a Box and collector booster iterations is that the Buy a Box promo was foil, whereas the card could appear in nonfoil in collector booster packs. The nonfoil Godzilla, King Of Monsters version is worth more because there were fewer nonfoil versions.

Commander Masters is finally bringing everything about Zilortha to light by revealing the card’s own unique printing and artwork, separate from the Godzilla series. It was seen in MTG Arena before this but it is still a long time after the Ikoria Set. Let’s take a look at Ikoria’s missing behemoth, making its first in-universe paper appearance.

Check out the Commander Masters Card Hints to find out about a new card for a decade-old cycle!

Commander Masters Edition

Zilortha, Strength Incarnate

Zilortha the Strength Incarnate, a cute dinosaur gets its own card in the Godzilla Series for the very first time. This Creature is unique in that it determines the amount of lethal damage to be dealt to Creatures under your control based on their power, rather than their toughness. This means that Zilortha, and any other Creatures under your control, will only die when the damage they receive matches their power. Zilortha, for instance, is a Creature that has seven power and three hardness. If you cast Lightning Bolt If it was aimed at Zilortha then it would not be killed. It would have three damage marks on it. If you use a Creature to block Zilortha, it will also have three damaged marks on it. Rampaging BalothsOnly the Baloths shall die.

The high-power Creatures work extremely well together with Zilortha. Cards like Thunderblust Zilortha makes it much harder to defeat enemies with high power but low toughness. Zilortha might not be the most powerful Commander available, but it still packs seven power with just five mana. Zilortha not only gets a separate card and artwork from the Godzilla cards, but is also downgraded to rare from mythic. The card should be easier to acquire and more affordable.

The Godzilla series certainly was an interesting idea, but it’s nice to see Zilortha finally getting its own card variant. Having Buy a Box promotional cards not appear in your main set is a major issue. Nexus of fate coverage debacle showed (Nexus of Fate was only available in foil, and due to curling, was often required to be proxied in players’ decks at tournaments, which was not ideal for viewers watching coverage). So, while Zilortha isn’t the flashiest card ever made, it’s nice to see it here nonetheless.

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