CGC Trading Cards Registry Featured Set: Arabian Nights

Posted on 1/25/2023

This month's featured set is Donroy's Arabian Nights Magic: The Gathering master set. Don't miss a Q&A with the set owner!

Arabian Nights, the first Magic: The Gathering expansion, was released in December 1993 — and the CGC Trading Cards Registry boasts a complete set in high grade. Arabian Nights was designed by Richard Garfield — Magic’s creator — who took inspiration from the One Thousand and One Nights collection of Middle Eastern folktales. Arabian Nights had a unique real-world story setting, unlike most other MTG expansions that take place on the fictional Planes of the Magic: The Gathering multiverse. In later prints of the set, however, the setting was changed to the fictional desert plane of Rabiah.

Though Arabian Nights is a small set, it contains many notable cards. The powerful Juzám Djinn had the highest combined power and toughness among Black creatures in Arabian Nights. However, that power came with a cost: Jurzám Djinn does one damage to its controller during upkeep. This card has since inspired the creation of several cost-effective cards, including Yukora, Plague Sliver and Balduvian Horde. Meanwhile, Library of Alexandria allows the drawing of two cards every turn instead of one, giving players a heavy advantage at the start of play.

The Shahrazad card triggers a game-within-a-game effect; players must pause their current MTG game and play a subgame of Magic using only the cards left in their current library. The loser of this subgame must halve their Life Points before both players shuffle their used cards back into their libraries and return to the overall MTG game. This mechanic draws inspiration from the storyteller Shahrazad in One Thousand and One Nights, who tells the Sultan a highly engaging story every night without finishing the tale, as it would mean her execution the following morning.

Both Library of Alexandria and Shahrazad are on the banned list, meaning they are illegal to use in Standard or Modern game play.

Donroy’s Arabian Nights set is 100% complete and contains cards graded CGC 7 or higher! We caught up with Donroy to talk about his collection, future collecting goals and his opinions on the CGC Trading Cards Registry. Check out the Q&A below!

Q&A with the Set Owner, Donroy

How did you become interested in collecting Magic: The Gathering cards?

A group of friends introduced me to it in 1994 during the Revised era. I was instantly hooked. I quit Magic in 1998 just before the Urza’s block and sold all my valuable cards at that time, which included an Arabian Nights set.

What is your favorite card in the set and why?

Of course, it’s the Juzám Djinn. My CGC Trading Cards Registry set is a rebuild of the set I sold in 1998 and Juzám was the very first card I reacquired, which was in 2019.

Was there a card that was difficult to find? If so, do you have a story about how you were able to finally locate the card?

The light mana variant of Stone-Throwing Devils! Tough to spot without magnification or an expert’s eye. I had to purchase several, before getting one in decent condition.

What are your other collecting goals?

To slowly improve upon my rebuilt set grade-wise. I have replaced several lower graded slabs with higher ones already. My ultimate goal is to have a full set above an 8.0.

How has the CGC Registry helped with your collecting goals?

It’s been a huge help keeping track of my set and planning which slabs to improve next.

About the CGC Trading Cards Registry

Launched in April 2022, The CGC Trading Card Registry is the newest addition to the suite of CCG collectibles registries. Since launch, hundreds of collectors have registered nearly 3,000 competitive sets. We’re grateful for such a successful start and unmatched enthusiasm among collectors.

The CGC Trading Cards Registry continues to grow daily; we’ve released hundreds of new sets since launch and are actively working to fulfill new set and slot requests. We welcome all your requests! It’s a fantastic opportunity for us to learn about your collecting interests.

The CGC Trading Cards Registry is a free online platform where collectors can register and display CGC-certified trading cards, compete with other collectors, and get inspired. The CGC Trading Cards Registry is also a great organizational tool for your collection. Begin adding your CGC-certified trading cards in the CGC Trading Cards Registry here.

We are just getting started! If you don’t see a set for your cards, please request a set. You may also review our CGC Trading Cards Registry FAQs for details on how to make requests for new sets and slots.

The CGC Trading Cards Registry team is here to help. Questions or comments? Want to connect with other collectors? Visit the CGC Trading Card and Registry Chatboards!

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