June 2015 Magic Online Event Updates

Posted in Magic Online on June 8, 2015

By Lee Sharpe

Since my last article, the team I am leading, the Magic Online Economy Strike Force, is hard at work evaluating the Magic Online economy and event structure, especially focused on constructed events. I hope to talk to you about this more soon, but we do have some events coming up that I want to share with you today.


HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

This month, Magic Online officially becomes a teenager! Magic Online launched its first version back in June 2002. With the calendar very busy this month between Modern Masters 2015 Edition, the Dragons of Tarkir Championships, and the Modern Festival, we will instead be celebrating Magic Online’s birthday in July this year! In the lead up to a new set, we typically offer Legacy Cube, but since it’s time to celebrate, instead we’ll be offering Holiday Cube. (Magic Online’s anniversary definitely constitutes a holiday as far as we’re concerned!)

In the past we offered Holiday Cube alongside a Flashback Draft format. The Cube Single elimination Draft prizes were a combination of Phantom Points and boosters for the Flashback Drafts, while the Swiss Drafts prizes were entirely Phantom Points. Over time we have observed players showing a preference for the Swiss Queue over the Single Elimination Queue. As a result, we’ve decided to try an experiment to see what happens:

Instead of a Flashback offering this time alongside the Cube, we are offering Mirrodin Block Flashback Drafts before the Cube, as part of the Modern Festival. If players respond well to this change, we hope to offer Flashback and Cube at different times so players can enjoy both when each is available instead of forcing people to choose. The Swiss Cube payouts are unchanged. See the end of the article for the event details for the other two Cube Queues.


QUEUE RETIREMENT

One of the data points we look a lot at, aside from how much the queues fire, is what we call the abandonment rate, or how often a player joins the queue and leaves without it firing as opposed to successfully playing in an event. (If the player leaves the queue right after joining, we don’t count them in this statistic.)

There are still a lot of events with high abandonment rates that also fire rarely, so we are removing them. The first is Block Constructed. Block Constructed has had just the 2-player queue for some time, and that queue is still firing poorly with a high abandonment rate. This leads to player disappointment, something we want to avoid when possible. Therefore, Magic Online will be retiring Block Constructed from event offerings as of the June 17 downtime. It will still be available in the open play rooms.

Additionally, the April changes removed the 4-Booster Sealed Queues in older formats in hopes of boosting the Phantom Sealed for the corresponding format. After this experiment, the older Phantom Sealed formats have fired very rarely and have high abandonment rates, so they are going to be discontinued as well.

The 6-2-2-2 Swiss Draft queues will still be available for older formats, and Phantom Sealed will not be going away for the current Limited format. The exact queues going away on the June 17 downtime are:

  • Khans of Tarkir Block Constructed 2-Player
  • Khans of Tarkir/Fate Reforged Phantom Sealed
  • Magic 2015 Phantom Sealed
  • Theros Block Phantom Sealed


PLAY POINTS

Currently, Phantom Points do a good job of serving Cube Drafts, Phantom Sealed Events, and other Phantom Events they are involved in. However, their name strongly implies they are limited to Phantom Events. As we plan for the future, we want to grow the use of a single point type rather than have different point types for different events.

We are also not able to be as granular with prizes as we like thanks to the ratio of Phantom Points to event tickets in our event offerings. More granular prizes will enable us to have prize structures we would like to offer but are currently unable to.

To fix these issues, with the July 22 downtime, we are retiring Phantom Points and instead introducing Play Points.

Obviously, as we transition, we will be giving players full credit for the Phantom Points already in their accounts as the downtime begins. After the downtime, each account will instead have six Play Points for every one Phantom Point already in the account.

The Dragons of Tarkir/Fate Reforged Phantom Sealed events will begin using the new Play Points after that downtime, as will future Cube Events, but no event types beyond those already using Phantom Points will be using Play Points at this time. You can see the details of the Dragons of Tarkir/Fate Reforged Sealed Event as it will exist after July 22 below.

As always, feedback on any of these changes can be made on Twitter to the official Twitter account (@MagicOnline), my own twitter account (@mtg_lee), or to magiconlinefeedback@wizards.com.

Lee Sharpe
Digital Product Manager—Magic Online Events


June 24-July 8 Events:

Mirrodin Block Three-Round Phantom Draft

Start Time: Wednesday, June 24, 12:00 p.m. Pacific (UTC-7) until Wednesday, July 8, 12:00 p.m.
Location: Limited Queues
Entry Options:

  • Option 1: 10 Event Tickets
  • Option 2: 16 Phantom Points

Product: Magic Online will provide 1 Phantom Mirrodin booster pack, 1 Phantom Darksteel booster pack, and 1 Phantom Fifth Dawn booster pack
All boosters are Phantom product and will not be added to a player's collection at the conclusion of the event
Size: 8 players
Play Style: Swiss
Format: Draft
Duration: 10 minutes deck-building time. Three rounds, each round up to 50 minutes.
Prizes:

Match Wins Prizes QPs
3 Wins 24 Phantom Points and 1 premium alternate-art Lightning Helix promo 1
2 Wins 16 Phantom Points 0
1 Win 6 Phantom Points 0
0 Wins 2 Phantom Points 0

Participation Prize: All participating players will receive a regular alternate-art Lightning Helix promo.

Top


July 8-July 22 Events:

Holiday Cube Single Elimination Draft

Start Times: Wednesday, July 8, 12:00 p.m. Pacific (UTC-7) until Wednesday, July 22, downtime.
Location: Limited Queues
Entry Options:

  • Option 1: 10 Event Tickets
  • Option 2: 16 Phantom Points

Product: Magic Online will provide 3 Phantom Holiday Cube booster packs
All boosters are Phantom product and will not be added to a player's collection at the conclusion of the event
Size: 8 players
Play Style: Single Elimination
Format: Draft
Duration: 10 minutes deck-building time. Three rounds, each round up to 50 minutes.
Prizes:

Place Prizes QPs
1st 48 Phantom Points 1
2nd 16 Phantom Points 0
3rd-4th 10 Phantom Points 0
5th-8th 2 Phantom Points 0

Top


Holiday Cube 3-Round Swiss

Start Times: Wednesday, July 8, 12:00 p.m. Pacific (UTC-7) until Wednesday, July 22, downtime.
Location: Limited Queues
Entry Options:

  • Option 1: 10 Event Tickets
  • Option 2: 16 Phantom Points

Product: Magic Online will provide 3 Phantom Holiday Cube booster packs
All boosters are Phantom product and will not be added to a player's collection at the conclusion of the event
Size: 8 players
Play Style: Swiss
Format: Draft
Duration: 10 minutes deck-building time. Three rounds, each round up to 50 minutes.
Prizes:

Match Wins Prizes QPs
3 Wins 24 Phantom Points 1
2 Wins 16 Phantom Points 0
1 Win 6 Phantom Points 0
0 Wins 2 Phantom Points 0

Top


Events After July 22:

Dragons of Tarkir/Fate Reforged Phantom Sealed

Start Times: Wednesday, July 22, 12:00 p.m. Pacific (UTC-7) until Wednesday, October 14, downtime.
Location: Limited Queues
Entry Options:

  • Option 1: 6 Event Tickets
  • Option 2: 60 Play Points

Product: Magic Online will provide 4 Phantom Dragons of Tarkir booster packs and 2 Fate Reforged booster packs
All boosters are Phantom product and will not be added to a player's collection at the conclusion of the event
Size: 8 players
Play Style: Swiss
Format: Sealed
Duration: 20 minutes deck-building time. Three rounds, each round up to 50 minutes.
Prizes:

Match Wins Prizes QPs
3 Wins 96 Play Points 1
2 Wins 48 Play Points 0
1 Win 24 Play Points 0
0 Wins 12 Play Points 0

Top

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