Wizards of the Coast responds to yet another AI art controversy, admitting the controversial technology was unknowingly used in some of its marketing.
- Wizards of the Coast mistakenly used AI art in a recent Magic: The Gathering marketing campaign, contradicting its commitment against using AI artwork.
- The company initially denied the use of AI art and claimed the images were hand-drawn, but later admitted its mistake and acknowledged the use of AI components.
- This incident adds to a series of controversies surrounding Wizards of the Coast, including the recent layoffs and previous AI art controversies, damaging its relationship with fans.
Wizards of the Coast just admitted to accidentally using AI art in one of its recent Magic: The Gathering marketing campaigns. This came only weeks after Wizards of the Coast doubled down on its commitment against using AI artwork.
Recently, Wizards of the Coast previewed some Magic: The Gathering cards from the Ravnica Remastered set in a series of steampunk backdrops. Sharp-eyed fans noticed some inconsistencies and details in the backgrounds of these ads that seemed to be AI-generated, and accused Magic: The Gathering of going back on its promise to not use AI art. Wizards of the Coast went on to assert the art was hand-drawn, and claimed it had conferred with the artist to confirm it as such.
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However, it seems like Wizards of the Coast discovered fans were right soon after this assertion. On the official Magic: The Gathering Twitter, it recently shared a thread admitting it had made a mistake. According to the post, the vendor had used AI components found within some industry tools to create these ads. Wizards of the Coast went on to reaffirm its stance against AI art, and further amended its promise to forbid the use of the technology in marketing images as well as in its final products.
Timeline of Recent Wizards of the Coast Controversies
- January 2023: Wizards of the Coast revealed a new Open Gaming License draft for Dungeons and Dragons that impeded third-party content creators, later rejecting it after fan outrage.
- April 2023: Magic: The Gathering sends Pinkertons to collect cards sent ahead of schedule to a fan.
- August 2023: Wizards of the Coast published AI art in Bigby Presents: Glory of the Giants, and later replaces it with hand-drawn work.
- December 2023:
- Hasbro laid off 1,100 staff members, including many from Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast doubled down against AI art after a wrongful accusation against new Dungeons and Dragons Player’s Handbook art.
- January 2024: Magic: The Gathering shared an ad featuring AI-generated art.
Wizards of the Coast has lost a lot of favor with fans over the last year. Between the D&D OGL controversy, the Pinkerton MTG incident, the Hasbro layoffs, and its multiple AI art controversies, it has received a lot of negative press lately. This most recent incident is simply another one added to the pile of grievances many have against the company.
Needless to say, fans aren’t happy with Magic: The Gathering right now. Though the fact Wizards of the Coast is standing against AI art inspires hope with some, the fact it continues to slip up and use AI art in the first place does not. The company will have to be careful moving forward if it wants to rebuild trust with its fans in the future.
Magic: The Gathering
- Original Release Date
- August 5, 1993
- Richard Garfield
- Player Count
- Age Recommendation