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2020 MagicFests and the Future of Tabletop Magic Esports

May 29, 2020
Elaine Chase

To the Magic community,

Without any doubt, our top priority is the health and safety of players, casters, artists, event staff, and everyone else who makes Magic competitive play both possible and wonderful. Given the unpredictability of COVID-19, we have made changes to how the highest levels of competitive Magic work to ensure that we can keep playing during the pandemic.

This year’s remaining Players Tour, Players Tour Final, and Mythic Invitational events are shifting to be run online with remote play. Starting this (northern hemisphere) fall, we will be shifting to set-based competitive seasons for the first time ever around Zendikar Rising.

Over the summer, you will see us continue to roll out new virtual approaches to competitive play like the Arena Open happening on May 30, with players who make Day 2 able to earn up to $2,000 based on their win record in this first iteration, and the MagicFest Online and Friday Night Magic events we have been hosting with our partners and your favorite WPN stores.

This means we’ve made the heartbreaking decision to cancel all outstanding 2020 in-person high-level Magic events including MagicFests. (For details on what this means for related programs, click here.)

We realize this isn’t what anyone wants. Most of us have forged friendships through the camaraderie of competition in far-flung places around the globe. Late nights in hotel lobbies, when players who had worked so hard for so long earned hard-won success, and tears and comforting when the bad beats hit. Hugs and high fives and debates over the best way to roll to see who got to choose to play or draw. The nervous excitement before opening that first draft pack. And countless other small moments that we all share and treasure.

Those thoughts will be at the forefront of our minds as we think about the future of tabletop play. But while the world rebuilds face-to-face gatherings, Magic competitive play isn’t going to wait; it’s going to continue online and from home. We change, we adapt, and we play on.

Magic is strong, and the Magic community is even stronger. Together we'll forge a new way of gathering to share our passion for Magic. And someday, we'll be able to sling spells at a table with friends we've made from around the world. I plan to be there with you when we do.

Elaine Chase

VP Esports

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