Well, Planeswalkers, Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Now is the time of year to be with friends and family-eating delicious meals together, taking stock of all your thankful for, and then routinely destroying them in a game of Magic…
What? Not part of your tradition? Maybe it should be.
Either way, while we’re all stuffing our faces, the best players of the world will be representing their country in the World Magic Cup! We have all the news and details to get you caught up and ready to watch over the weekend as well as more news on what’s awaiting us at the end of November. So load up on that turkey and stuffing and let’s get started.
Best in the World:
For you new players, or those who don’t follow the world of Pro Magic, you may be asking yourself what the difference is between the World Magic Cup and the Magic World Championships. Well, at the championships, it’s every player for him or herself. Sure, people train with and help each other in teams, but eventually only one player is crowned the Magic World Champ and called the #1 player in the world. The World Magic Cup, on the other hand, uses teams to compete, each team made of 4 members representing their own country. Yes, that means there is one team for the U.S. of A. or Britain or Japan, etc. The team that wins the whole thing, gets to bring home the big, shiny, Magic cup for their country. Until next year that is…
So lend some of your national pride to the support of our American team (or you know…whatever country you want to root for). Each team is comprised of the individual champion of each country (the one who earned the most Pro Points last season) and the three winners of the Magic Cup Qualifiers (sorry, invitation only event in case you were wondering).
If you have any more questions about what the event is, how it’s run or where to watch, check out the official World Magic Cup FAQ. After you’re all caught up there, head to the World Magic Cup Hub which has all the events from the weekend gathered in one place. You can watch the stream, highlights, interviews, news articles and social media sites. Like most people, you probably won’t be able to spend hours of your time watching the pros play Magic, so the hub is the best spot to keep up to date on what’s going on. Or, if you want to skip all the hubbub, Wizards is live streaming the entire event at twitch.tv/magic. Coverage should already be underway, so gather up that fiery zeal for your country!
If you want to know more about the Magic World Cup-particularly what you’re likely to see the pros use-we’ve got some info about that as well. You see, the first part of the tournament will be Standard Sealed, meaning players must make and play with a decks made from Kaladesh boosters received at the event. Where things really get interesting, however, is the second day when teams switch to Unified Modern format. Wizards likes to focus on the Standard format (using only cards from Battle for Zendikar to Kaladesh), so actually seeing Modern format (which uses any cards from basically Eighth Edition and forward) get its time in the sun will be interesting. The twist is the, “unified,” aspect, which means that no deck can use the same cards. You have that one card you like to use in every deck? Well, tough, you can only have it in one.
My favorite part about Modern, is that you’re likely to see way more of a variety of decks than you would in Standard. You can look here to see what decks and strategies the pros are most likely to use based off what’s most powerful in Modern, but honestly that’s still only a fraction of what you could see at any Modern tournament. If I’ve sparked your desire for Modern, check here for a day-to-day breakdown of the event with even more Modern deck strategies.
If you want more on the history of the World Magic Cup and see a breakdown of stats by each country, here’s a nice, convenient info graphic. If you want to know more about the participants themselves, check out this interview article of World Magic Cup players.
Hopefully you’ve got all you need to keep track of the action this weekend, or enough ideas to hold a little weekend tournament of your own with friends. Speaking of multiplayer, let’s get to some more news-
Last week we took our time to discuss the new Commander 2016 Edition and all the reasons why it makes for some great casual, multiplayer fun. Take a look for tips and tricks to get you started and then head to the Commander 2016 home for more info. However, that’s not the only multiplayer variant Wizards will be throwing at us. Come November 25th, you’ll be able to pick up the Planechase Anthology:
The anthology comes with literally everything you see in the picture, most important of which is the four, ready-to-play, prebuilt, 60 card decks. That means you and your friends can play right out of the box! So, what makes the Planechase format so unique? You see those weird looking, over-sized cards in the bottom left of the picture? Those are called Planar cards. Each player has a stack and each Planar card affects the battlefield in some way. Either it makes you do something every turn like deal damage or draw cards, or gives your creatures special boosts, or does something unique when a certain condition is met, etc. Either way, the Planar cards represent the huge myriad of locations from the Magic story over the years, from the planes themselves to cities or locations of key events. Each turn you roll a dice to see if you and your opponent stay at the current plane or planeswalk somewhere new. This keeps the game ever shifting and random as one plane could give you a leg up or work against you.
For those of you who love to follow the Magic story, or like to read the story chapters that come with each set, this is the perfect product to play with. The Planar cards you use are meant to represent your personal journey through the Multiverse with the creatures you’ve tamed, allies you’ve made, and spell knowledge you’ve collected. Modify the decks to tell the story of your character. Just like Commander, Planechase gives you an opportunity to mix your creativity into the fantastical world of Magic. What kind of Planeswalker will you be? It’s all up to you.
For more information on Planechase and the new anthology, check out the official product preview.
That’s all for this week Planeswalkers! Whether you’re watching the pros play, or getting into it with friends and family, remember to have fun and be thankful to have a trading card game like Magic which, as you can see, brings people together from all over the world!