In What Order were the Sets Designed / Printed / Released ?

Questions about Magic items and events.

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cataclysm80
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Post by cataclysm80 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 4:56 am

Thanks Alexis!

I guess my previous sources must have been using the copyright date to place German Limited in 1994.
With French Limited & German Limited both being released in March of 1995, I'm going to list French first because of the French copyright on the German Islands.

Also, we are making some progress on foreign 4th Edition.
Spanish July 1995
Portuguese later in summer of 1995
Japanese later than Portuguese (anounced working on it, but no release info yet)

I had seen a bit here somewhere for Chinese 4th that had some info in it. I'll have to see if I can find that...
Here it is http://www.magiclibrarities.net/forum/v ... php?t=2496

Japanese black border sold out
Chinese (traditional) released late August 1996
Korean is the only one not mentioned, so it must be last.

Still have to figure where Spanish, Portuguese, & Japanese white border fit in.

Tav
Last edited by cataclysm80 on Sat Jan 04, 2014 5:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by cataclysm80 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 6:42 am

Neuron wrote:
English 4th = Small 1995 date

German white border 3rd

--> Llanowar Elves has the flavour text that was introduced in English 4th Edition. The textbox is similar dark as English 4th. (see below)

Image
I need to look into this a little more. It reminds me of the Serendib Efreet which only has flavor text in French. How does something like that happen?
Also, I want to compare the text box darkness of French Unlimited with 1995 copyright date to see if it is also like 4th. If so, that may indicate Italian Second Edition as coming before French Unlimited.

Note: Also, when did Rivals Quick Start show up?

Tav

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Post by dragsamou » Mon Nov 25, 2013 1:00 pm

cataclysm80 wrote:
Note: Also, when did Rivals Quick Start show up?

Tav
Hi Tav

The Rivals Quick Start Set was released in July 1996.
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Post by cataclysm80 » Thu Dec 05, 2013 7:56 am

mystical_tutor wrote: The work on the realease of Unlimited was not much more than a phone call. Arabian Nights was in the planning stages early on (as a different game).
I found this quote in the thread about black and white sheets produced while working on the design of Revised.
http://www.magiclibrarities.net/forum/v ... ed&start=0
I thought the quote was relevant to this discussion and wanted to include it here.

Tav

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Post by Neuron » Thu Dec 05, 2013 10:09 pm

This might be another useful information: The French UL Starter rulebooks have copyright 1994 and the Italians 1995.

Flavour text: I think it was in the hands of the translators to add and cut them (s. Karakas it LG, Will-o-the-Wisp WB, Bird Maiden Ren,...). The French flavour texts differ often, English poets were substituted by French ones. See also French BB Drudge Skeletons which is entirely different from the others.

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Post by cataclysm80 » Sat Jan 04, 2014 5:56 am

cataclysm80 wrote: Also, we are making some progress on foreign 4th Edition.
Spanish July 1995
Portuguese later in summer of 1995
Japanese later than Portuguese (anounced working on it, but no release info yet)

I had seen a bit here somewhere for Chinese 4th that had some info in it. I'll have to see if I can find that...
Here it is http://www.magiclibrarities.net/forum/v ... php?t=2496

Japanese black border sold out
Chinese (traditional) released late August 1996
Korean is the only one not mentioned, so it must be last.

Still have to figure where Spanish, Portuguese, & Japanese white border fit in.

Tav


While researching card fonts for the study of the German/French test prints, I came across some more information relevant to this thread...

For English Mirage (Pre-Released on September 21, 1996), the textbox & power/toughness font was changed from Plantin to Bold Plantin. Along with this change, the textbox was enlarged to the same width as the artbox. This continued through 7th Edition until the card frame was redesigned.

Looking over the foreign 4th cards with 1996 copyrights, I see that the textbox was enlarged before the font change happened.
Chinese (Traditional) 4th was designed first as it uses the older smaller textbox.
Japanese (both black border & white border) & Korean were designed after the change to the enlarged textbox, but still have the older Plantin font for power/toughness.

Interestingly, although the Japanese set was designed AFTER the Chinese set, Carta Mundi and WotC were able to print distribute and sell out the Japanese black border print run (It sold very quickly!) BEFORE Shepard Poorman and WotC could release the Chinese cards.
Perhaps there was a delay at the Shepard Poorman printing facility?
Perhaps Carta Mundi was on best behavior because they knew WotC was shopping around for other printers? (Shepard Poorman & United States Playing Card Corporation)

I haven't compared the textboxes of all the 1996 Introductory Two-Player Sets yet, but from what I've seen so far, all but the Japanese one use the older smaller textbox (and also Plantin font). The Japanese Introductory Two-Player Set uses the larger textbox of coarse.

For comparison, the Alliances (small textbox & Plantin font) Pre-Release was May 18th 1996.

Tav

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Post by Neuron » Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:58 am

Good description of the design changes! A few years ago, I started a project which's goal was to mention really all changes in the design from set to set. Considering also the picture part of the card (frame lines and coloring), I found slight changes in each set from Alpha to Antiquities. I didn't came further due to too much work (and the results were lost when the hard drive of my computer died two years ago...)

The Asian 4th designs previously let me put the Japanese versions behind the others. But all other features were like the older design. Ch and Ko had:

- smaller mana symbols (until the end?)
- copyright clause font is different: Ch bigger than normal, resized in KO
- Upper frame bevelling almost missing in Ch, Ko still less than Jp

Perhaps the enlargemant of the textbox in Jp was done because the alphabeth needs more space than the Ch and Ko. Later they could have found this useful in general and extended it to all languages and editions.

Font changes in the frame script (boldness, alignment) happend also in Jp between Mirage and 5th.

Furthermore, in 1996 the mana symbols were digitally overworked. First appeared on the Introductory Two-Player Set cards and Ice Age. English first in Mirage.

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Post by berkumps » Wed Jan 22, 2014 3:10 pm

Found some interesting information in the T-Chinese 4th release announcement in this thread:

http://www.magiclibrarities.net/forum/v ... php?t=2496
announcement wrote:The Chinese launch of the game comes on the heels of the sold-out release of the Japanese translation of Magic: The Gathering earlier this summer in Japan. Wizards of the Coast chose Chinese for its next language expansion because the Chinese market is one of the largest in the world. Collectable trading card games were relatively unknown in Asia until the English release of Magic: The Gathering was imported into parts of Asia more than a year ago.

The much-anticipated Chinese version is the eighth translation of the game that has quickly become known as the intellectual sport of the '90s.
We know that, despite design changes indicating Chinese might have been 'planned' before Japanese, it was released afterwards:
announcement wrote:The Chinese launch of the game comes on the heels of the sold-out release of the Japanese translation of Magic: The Gathering earlier this summer in Japan
We don't know much about where Korean 4th Ed falls into the mix, and Tav had posted about the order of BB asian sets:
cataclysm80 wrote:Japanese black border sold out
Chinese (traditional) released late August 1996
Korean is the only one not mentioned, so it must be last.
From this sentence mentioned in the Chinese release announcement, I'm going to guess that T-Chinese was actually last:
announcement wrote:The much-anticipated Chinese version is the eighth translation of the game...
The word translation implies that English is not counted in the list. So if T-Chinese is the eighth, and there are only 8 non-english translations until s-chinese was released, then the order of the eight translations must be:

1. Italian
2. French
3. German
4. Spanish
5. Portuguese
6. Japanese
7. Korean
8. T-Chinese

So Korean must have been produced/released prior to T-Chinese. Still more digging to be done however!

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Post by berkumps » Wed Jan 22, 2014 3:23 pm

berkumps wrote:The word translation implies that English is not counted in the list.
Well, after having my coffee (thus improving my reading comprehension for the morning), I read the following sentence in the same release announcment:
announcement wrote:To date, more than two billion cards have sold worldwide and the game has been translated into seven languages: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German and Japanese.
I honestly don't know why they used that wording, as I have no clue what they were translating from to translate it into English, but if they think English was one of the translations, then Japanese would be the seventh, with Chinese the eighth (making Korean afterwards), not to mention that Korean is absent from their list. Alas, Korean must be last.

1. Italian
2. French
3. German
4. Spanish
5. Portuguese
6. Japanese
7. T-Chinese
8. Korean

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Post by Neuron » Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:19 pm

Korean must be last
As typology tells us!

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Post by mystical_tutor » Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:47 pm

berkumps wrote: 1. Italian
2. French
3. German
4. Spanish
5. Portuguese
6. Japanese
7. Korean
8. T-Chinese

So Korean must have been produced/released prior to T-Chinese. Still more digging to be done however!
Because I can not remember exactly and because i can not find my pictures of the opening ceremonies for each of these all i can give you exactly is:
The picture I took of Peter in a rickshaw in Beijing was about 10 min before he hot mugged by said rickshaw driver and friends. That was at 7:12 pm on the 27th of May 2000. I think that was the day before the official release. When/if I find the ceremony pictures I can nail the times down exactly. I didn't get any pictures at the Japanese release as I forgot my camera. I think I have Korean and Chinese though.

Gary
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Post by cataclysm80 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 3:51 am

I think I've seen the picture you're talking about. That's good detective work Gary. I look forward to hearing any other clues you can come up with.

I wasn't there myself, but I suspect the date on your picture may have been changed when the file was copied or modified. 2000 sounds a little late to release a card with a 1996 copyright date. Maybe if you could find an older version of the picture or perhaps a different picture?

Tav

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Post by mystical_tutor » Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:56 pm

Your right Tav, and I realized that in the middle of the night. 2000 is when I was working for WotC and long after those releases. The camcorder I had at the time went out of commission not long after the trip to China and pictures were refiled later.

Sometimes my thinking just gets bogged down, sorry.

Gary
cataclysm80 wrote:I think I've seen the picture you're talking about. That's good detective work Gary. I look forward to hearing any other clues you can come up with.

I wasn't there myself, but I suspect the date on your picture may have been changed when the file was copied or modified. 2000 sounds a little late to release a card with a 1996 copyright date. Maybe if you could find an older version of the picture or perhaps a different picture?

Tav
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Post by cataclysm80 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 5:48 am

I saw some WotC paperwork recently which had some release/distribution information for some of the sets. Acording to the paperwork...

Alpha was sent in two shipments, 600,000 cards & 1,800,000 cards.

Beta was sent in one shipment of 7,600,000 cards.

No mention of either Collector's or Unlimited.

Arabian Nights, Antiquities, & Legends were each sent in one shipment from Belgium. (That's one shipment per set.) Stores also received all the cards they would get for each of these in one shipment (per set).

While The Dark & Fallen Empires were being printed, cards were shipped from Belgium as soon as they were ready (before the whole print run was complete) and directly to distributors, which sent some of what they had received to each store that had ordered, and repeated this process whenever a shipment was received from Belgium. This means that each store received their order in multiple shipments from the distributor. This was done to get cards into the stores quickly and lessen storage costs.

Revised (no mention of 4th edition) and Ice Age were each printed for a set timeframe (about a year), with more being printed as needed when orders came in.

Returns (miscuts?) were handled in reverse. Customer returns deffects to store, store sends to distributor, distributor sends to Belgium. (Carta Mundi presumably gives some form of credit to Wizards for manufacturers defects.)

I found that interesting, and thought I would include it here for posterity.

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Post by cataclysm80 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 6:45 am

This is a page from that same WotC paperwork.
Image

Not exactly sure of the date of this paper, but it should be in the range of October 1994 to January 1995.

Notice that the cards shown as Revised are actually Summer Magic (Edgar).

Notice that the Ice Age cards in this picture use the Medium sized copyright line like Fallen Empires. (small copyright apparently not created yet?)

Notice that the card frames do not have (black or white) borders around them. These cards were not printed, this is just the computer image.

Tav

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