Over the course of Magic, the look of cards has changed quite a bit – from art style to functionality.
The original cards from Alpha are actually differently shaped from regular cards. The corners are very rounded, and the borders have no real separation from the colored section of the border.
The Beta cards have the same corners as other older cards, and have a black/grey border between the border and colored section.
Unlimited was the beginning of the white borders, which has a small black line between the white border and the colored part of the card.
Revised is difficult to tell apart from Unlimited, but just irons out some kinks from Unlimited.
The reason I go through all of those is because Magic started with 4 revisions of it’s design in the first 4 sets.
Arabian Nights introduces the border we see for quite a while aside from the reprint sets, with a few minor changes.
After Ice Age, there was also a change to the white mana symbol, though isn’t too relevant.
8th Edition introduced the modern borders that we’ve known for quite a while. At this point, though, there were still white borders.
And here’s the border we had until M15.
The main difference between the M15 and all of the borders before is is that rares have a holographic sticker in the center of the bottom border of the card, which actually looks really cool on these newer cards.
Until next time,