Last weekend saw the release of Kamigawa: The Neon Dynastythe latest expansion for Magic: The Gathering. These new maps will take players to a setting inspired by Japanese folklore, an aircraft last visited nearly 20 years ago in the real world and over 1,200 years ago in the Magic scenario. A lot has changed since the original Kamigawa block, and the plane is now imbued with futuristic technology and vibrant lighting. It’s cyberpunk, only instead of a dark dystopia, it presents a brighter, more optimistic take on the genre. While the original block was about a war between mortals and kami (spirits or gods worshiped in the Shinto religion), now the two live together in harmony. It’s a world that many players, myself included, wouldn’t hesitate to enter or completely swap the real world for. Anticipating this, the Wizards of the Coast team enlisted YRS TRULY to develop a visual novel based on the setting, titled – appropriately enough –Kamigawa: A Visual Novel.
Players in this visual novel take on the role of an Imperial samurai tasked with recovering a stolen kami. This mission will lead them to Sokenzan-shi, a resilient city of builders and craftsmen built into the greatest mountains of Kamigawa. Characters appear in an anime style familiar to visual novel fans and more emancipated fans of Magic: The Gathering can expect to recognize several eminent Magic influencers and content creators who have been rendered into the background among these characters.
I look forward to this game because it connects my love of Magic, visual novels, and the fact that we are finally returning to a world whose origins predate my involvement as a gamer. Putting content creators in the lore is a fun tribute to the culture surrounding the hobby.