2019 is about to be a big year for Magic: The Gathering, the father of all card games. Late in 2018, its developer Wizards of the Coast announced plans for a $10 million circuit, to encompass offline and online events alike. On Thursday, the company announced further details, including dates and format for its first Mythic Invitational event.
The tournament will take place Mar. 28-31 during PAX East. 64 players will compete for a $1 million pot and $250,000 for first place. Wizards of the Coast’s VP of esports Elaine Chase called it a “historic weekend ushering in a new era of Magic esports” and the description is quite accurate. So far, Magic has been a strictly offline game, struggling to connect with the online world of esports. With MTG Arena as its banner digital product, WOTC are now ready to contest the market where Hearthstone currently reigns as king.
Of the 64 total players, eight will qualify through aforementioned MTG Arena. They will need a top 8 in Mythic Constructed Ranking for February: a feat requiring a lot of talent, but also a lot of time and games to achieve. “Wizards of the Coast will publish official rankings weekly during February so challengers can keep tabs on their performance and track how they stack up against the competition,” WOTC said.
During PAX East’s Mythic Invitational, Wizards will also test a brand new format for the game. Dubbed Duo Standard, it will require players to bring two constructed standard decks, with no restriction to color or cards used between them.
Details on which players will participate in this event are yet to be announced. Most likely, however, half of them will be the 32 players invited to the first season of Magic Pro League. The list features notable MTG veterans like Alexander Hayne, Lee Shi Tian, Martin Juza, Owen Turtenwald, Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa, Reid Duke, Shot Yasooka and Yuuya Watanabe, among others.