Beginning with Alliances in June 1996, expansion sets were released in a regular pattern: the base sets were released in October with the small expansion sets being released in February and June. Thus, beginning with Alliances, only year, not month, of release is given for expansion sets in the table below. Also beginning with Alliances, expansion sets were given codenames while in development; the code names of the three expansions of a cycle usually fit together to form a phrase or common theme. The only block set to break the pattern of months after Ice Age Block is Dissension, which was released a month early, in May instead of June, because of the July release of Coldsnap.
Base/core set editions by Chronology
Notes and references
- When the Revised Edition was in production in 1994, a number of problems with the set became apparent. Some cards' colors were washed-out. The picture and color foreground for the Serendib Efreet were wrong (not that this was the first such misprint), and there was a growing concern with the Satanic images on some of the cards. The solution was to print a "fixed" version of Revised Edition, code named "Edgar", which has since came to be known as Summer Magic because it was printed in the summer of 1994. The cards were distributed in regular Revised Edition boosters, but no Summer Edition starters were produced. Despite its intended function as a fixed Revised Edition, there were problems with Summer Magic. On some cards, the colors were too dark. Furthermore, Hurricane was printed as a blue card and thereby became the most famous and most desired Summer Magic card of all. The Serendib Efreet had its artwork corrected, but the artist name was forgotten to be updated. The artist name for Plateau was not corrected as well. Because of all these flaws, the entire print run was recalled and destroyed which led to the great Revised Edition shortage of 1994. However, a few booster boxes survived. Summer Magic cards can sell for over $1000 for notable cards and some as high $5000. Summer Magic cards can best be recognized by their 1994 copyright date.
- Chronicles, an expansion-sized set released in 1995 between Ice Age and Homelands, reprinted many previous cards, drawn from the Arabian Nights, Antiquities, Legends, and The Dark sets, that were becoming difficult to obtain but added no new cards to the game. Despite being published between Ice Age and Homelands, it is not considered part of the Ice Age Block; for purposes of tournament-legality, it was instead treated as an extension of Fourth Edition. The cards in Chronicles were reprinted with white borders, as opposed to their original black borders.
- The cards in Chronicles retained the expansion symbol of the original expansion in which the card was printed. However, Gatherer , the official Magic: The Gathering card database, identifies cards reprinted in Chronicles with a symbol of a capital letter C superimposed on a globe set in a semi-meridian.
- Homelands was not designed as part of the Ice Age cycle and has no thematic or story-based link to the other sets in it. Wizards of the Coast retroactively declared it part of the Ice Age cycle in 1997 to fit with the then-emerging standard cycle structure. In 2006, Coldsnap, which completes Ice Age's storyline and design themes, was at last be released. Coldsnap now completes the Ice Age block, and Homelands has reverted back to a standalone set. 
- The open book was the Thran Tome, part of Urza’s Legacy artifacts.
- The Coalition was a group assembled by Urza to defend Dominaria against the invasion of the Phyrexians. For more information about this expansion symbol, see .
- The crying mask was the mask of Yawgmoth.
- Many creatures in the Onslaught Block had the ability to morph. Morphed creatures looked like "clay spiders"; for an explanation, look under the "January 10, 2003" heading of this link: .