Magic: Competitive Play Changes
A swath of changes are coming to Magic’s competitive arena of play this Summer, including the return of a popular event and removal of others!
One of the most exciting announcements is the return of Nationals! Nationals were discontinued as a result of Wizards of the Coast shuffling large events around, trying to discover what the best options were for competitive, Pro Players and the health of the game as a whole, in addition to a lack of experienced organizers. Nationals will be held during the weekends of September 9th, 16th and 23rd and replace the World Magic Cup Qualifiers going forward. The top two players at your country’s Nationals will be given spots on the World Magic Cup team, while the top Pro Point earner for the season in their country will be the Team Captain.
How to Play In Nationals?
In order to participate in Nationals, players must gain a certain amount of Planeswalker Points by the end of the Yearly Award Season on May 28th, 2017. You can find more information about how many points you need, which can depend on your country, by checking out the Premier Play Invitation Policy page. In addition, as eluded to before, World Magic Cup teams will be 3-player teams rather than 4-player teams like in the past. This is said to be due to tensions and wanting players to spend more time actually playing Magic.
The format of Nationals and the World Magic Cup will be Standard, whereas the last World Magic Cup was Team Unified Modern. Wizards is looking to highlight more recent formats, and thus more accessible product and cards, resulting in this change to the format.
Other Event Changes
Wizards is bringing back Pro Tour Qualifiers as an option for Sunday attendees at all Grand Prix events moving forward, allowing them a chance at an invitation to the Pro Tour being fed by the Grand Prix they attended.
As of early this Summer, Grand Prix Trials will no longer be held at your local game stores, with the GPT events leading up to Grand Prix Las Vegas on June 15th-16th being the last events of their kind. After Grand Prix Las Vegas, any players wishing to try to earn byes for the Main Event for a Grand Prix can go to that event’s venue the Friday of that Grand Prix’s events, where Grand Prix Trials will be held. The reason stated that stores will no longer be able to host a GPT is that they have had very limited success and turn out.
Now that the board has been set and the pieces in place, players can once again begin focusing on their rise to fame and glory in the competitive scene. If you have feedback or wish to read more about these changes, you can check out the original announcement article here. Check back here at QueueTimes for more news regarding Magic announcements and upcoming set previews, including the highly anticipated Modern Masters 2017 and Amonkhet!