This Week in Magic: the Gathering

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Magicfest Las Vegas

Magic: the Gathering celebrated it’s biggest event of the year, Magicfest: Las Vegas. Sin City was the host to the biggest Magic tournament of the year. A packed house filled the Las Vegas Convention Center for: Command Zone Events, Live Panels, Cosplay, Two Main Events, Eight Mythic Championship Qualifiers, and tons of side-events. Las Vegas was home to a Modern format Grand Prix and a Modern Horizons Sealed Grand Prix. The winners were: Simon Nielsen and Allen Wu. Nielsen played the boogeyman of the Modern format in Hogaak. Allen Wu won with his Red-Green Monsters draft deck.

With over 2000 in the modern main event and over 1400 people there to play Modern Horizons, it was a packed house. There were an uncounted amount of people just there to hang out, buy cards, play casual games, or compete in side events also. Magic was out in full force.

The weekend wasn’t all sunshine and Lightning Bolts though. A controversy involving the Old School Championship tournament left a black mark on the weekend. In a for fun tournament designed to show off the early magic only tournament, Brian Weissman was the winner of the tournament. Thanks to some quick eyes on Twitter, he was outed as having cheated in the event. He played a decklist that he posted on twitter, but actually put another copy of a card in his deck for the finals. ChannelFireball, the hosts of the tournament and the MagicFest, acted quickly to rectify the situation and a new winner was crowned.

Modern Shaken Up Considerably

The unfortunate fate for two Magic cards.

On the Monday after Grand Prix Vegas Wizards of the Coast decided to shake up the Modern format. The cards Hogaak, Arisen Necropolis and Faithless Looting are banned and Stoneforge Mystic is unbanned. What does this mean for the Modern format as a whole? Who knows? But it means that there’s excitement abound. The format is wide open. A new powerful card like Stoneforge Mystic might mean that entire decks are going to sprout up.

Overall the weekend was a successful one for Magic: the Gathering and Wizards of the Coast. They cleared up problems with one of their most popular formats and they ran a great tournament. I was in attendance and can tell you the experience of most people was resoundingly positive. Magic: the Gathering is going through a series of changes in the fundamentals of the organized play of the game, but it’s still the same fun game that you might remember.

That’s it for this week. It was a huge weekend for Magic and the modern format, but there’ll be more news and tournament results next week.

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