New D&D Monsters and More in Guildmasters’ Guide to Ravnica

Do you want dozens of new D&D monsters from Wizards of the Coast? Does exploring a planet spanning city via membership in one of ten competing guilds sound challenging? If you play or DM Dungeons & Dragons, then Guildmasters’ Guide to Ravnica will have something for you. Gleaned from WotC interviews and news, this is what we know so far about Ravnica.

Guildmasters’ Guide to Ravnica, releasing in November, is thoroughly a D&D book for D&D players. Magic the Gathering uses colors in the metagame but flavor text on cards do not mention colors. The colors would be meaningless in a D&D world. Guilds are defined based on philosophy not color. The setting focuses on adventurers, not MtG play. An example is new full page art depicting an adventuring party in the rain with four different guild members on a bridge behind them. An image that is grounded in D&D game play.

Ravnica’s ten guilds serve as both government and voluntary organizations. They clash with opposing philosophies and goals. The traditional magical power keeping the peace is the guildpact. The guildpact currently flows from one man and he is often on other planes, leaving Ravnica open to guild intrigue and tension filled conflict.

The guild is the lens through which the PCs see the world. A player may select a guild in place of a background. Guilds are more about exploration and interaction than combat. Guilds provide skills, special abilities, and NPC contacts. The DM looks at all of the PCs’ guilds and builds a campaign around opposing guilds. Advice covers good guilds to serve as adversaries, plots to oppose the PCs, typical NPCs and monsters to use, and what locations would fit the campaign. The players‘ guild choice combined with the advice for DMs provides a solid direction for a campaign.

James Wyatt gives brief guild descriptions. The Boros Legion are paladins, armored mages wielding fire, and military forces. The Golgari Swarm are sewer dwelling elves living in darkness, using insects, and wielding necromancy. The Selesnya Conclave is a cult speaking in one voice and trying to convert others. House Dimir consists of spies and assassins. The Orzhov Syndicate are a combination of organized crime, bank, and church. The Izzet League is home to inventors and conduct grand experiments. The Gruul Clans combine fiery emotion with a connection to the natural world expressed through barbarian clans. The Azorius Senate governs Ravnica and enforces the law. The Cult of Rakdos is a demonic cult circus. The Simic Combine masters life science and is heavily into body modification and hybrid creatures.

D&D players will benefit from a plethora of new content and rules. The number of new monsters nearly equals those in Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes. Rules playtested in Unearthed Arcana debuting officially include new races (centaurs, minotaurs, loxodons, Simic hybrids, vedalken, and viashino), the order domain for clerics, and the circle of spores druid subclass. City design in Guildmasters’ provides local description and street level information rather than block by block descriptions. Maps are isometric and have a painted look.

Monsters from Ravnica could easily cross over to other D&D worlds. The circus in Waterdeep from Dragon Heist could be filled with monsters from Ravnica. And the Cult of Rakdos could actually be that circus. The chase rules in Dragon Heist could be used in Ravnica.

Sources for information from WotC on the upcoming book include the official website, a Wizards of the Coast podcast called Dragon Talk with James Wyatt and Greg Tito, and D&D Beyond on YouTube with James Wyatt, Mike Mearls, and Ari Levitch. James Wyatt started merging Magic the Gathering with D&D in his Plane Shift articles. Guilds of Ravnica for MtG releases on October 5 while the D&D Guildmasters’ Guide to Ravnica releases on November 20.

This article was contributed by Charles Dunwoody as part of EN World's Columnist (ENWC) program.We are always on the lookout for freelance columnists! If you have a pitch, please contact us!

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Charles Dunwoody

Charles Dunwoody


First Post
Still not feeling this really. Given how past playtested rules have gone, I'm not expecting any exciting overhauls on things we've already seen, which doesn't inspire confidence. The monsters sound cool, since Magic has no shortage of interesting variants, but they'll need to be really really good to warrant the purchase. On that note I'm a little more optimistic though, Mordenkainen's was basically the same way, a bunch of awesome monsters weighed down by filler. Sadly the 'street level' view also seems like it will be terrible, since as both player and DM I want a more comprehensive overview of the factions' beliefs and methods, which seems to run contrary to this form of presentation.


Planescape has a larger number of factions. The designers should stop waste their time with another game's settings (this one and the varius planeshits) and come out with some D&D setting (not in the play-test stage...).


Been here a while...
I guess I'll be dissenting opinion then. I'm excited. I wanted to see something new when they announced the upcoming settings. I quit playing Magic quite a while before Ravnica came out, so its all new to me.


Count me in the dissenting. It seems really cool, useful, and a way to explore something familar but very new to D&D. Only concern is the street level, but that makes sense as an introduction to the setting. And if the Spoilers for Guilds of Ravnica have been anything... Things are gonna be busy for the wider world... Wonder if this means we are getting statted out Eternals

and hey we get a faction setting that isnt so far up its own ass like late Planescape was
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I’m FAR more interested in this than Dungeon of the Mad Mage (but would like to be pleasantly surprised with that one). It sounds like an interesting setting with a ton of adventure possibility, and for the first time since... well, 2004 with Eberron, it’s a new (to me) D&D setting that I’m really excited about! It’s been a long time.

I am also looking forward to a new world for D&D. Guilds as background sounds like a great idea especially in that it helps the DM narrow his or her focus. I also like that the metagame of Magic (color and other card game terms) is not part of the book. New races and new monsters, not just updated ones, are also a big draw for me.

I think a campaign set in Ravnica would be exciting. Guild conflict, street level fights, and all the mystery and exploration a huge city offers.

Ravnica is the first 5E book that has me excited since the first three rulebooks came out. It's something new and a lot of work has gone into crafting it.

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