This article originally ran on March 5, 2009.
A guy at my store had a 4 digit DCI number. What's the lowest DCI number still used? Is/was anyones DCI number just 1?
Well, according to the DCI, the lowest number that belongs to someone who played at least one sanctioned match in the last year is "1000". So officially, there aren't any active numbers that are fewer than four digits.
However! There's a player whose number is technically "40000001", but that's just because of the eight-digit format. The "4" is just a check-digit. As far as we at Magic Arcana are concerned, the player's DCI number is "1". He's Peter Leiher, and here's the story.
Back in the mists of time (May 1999), at 1998-99 Pro Tour–New York, there was a special side event called "The Sideboard Invitational." The idea is that players who had just missed various cuts in the Pro Tour would get to play in their very own side event, with the prize being a one-digit DCI number. The contestants were:
- Ryan Fuller and Adrian Sullivan (finished 9th and 10th, just missing the Top 8)
- Kyle Rose and Homero Flores (finished 33rd and 34th, just missing the automatic invitation to the next Pro Tour)
- Tony Dobson and Peter Ripley (finished 65th and 66th, just missing the money winnings)
- Steve Kissinger and Peter Leiher (finished 97th and 98th, just missing the cut to Day 2)
So once these eight players had been assembled, they faced off in a one-of-a-kind eight-player tournament: Oversized Rochester Draft!
Wizards of the Coast used to print these 6"x9" cardboard cards as promotions and prizes, and by 1999, we had a pretty big list of them. So big that we were able to put together 24 "packs" and let people draft them!
Naturally, the cards represented an unusual cross-section of Magic. There were Black Lotuses and Blacker Lotuses. And thanks to a cycle of Mirage-block cards, it was possible to draft Squandered Resources and Cadaverous Bloom and try to live the ProsBloom dream.
Peter Leiher, however, spotted an even better combo in the card pool:
Guardian Beast says that your artifacts can't be destroyed. And Chaos Orb destroys itself, instead of using the "sacrifice" template. Using this little combo, Leiher was able to destroy all who stood in his way, and was awarded with DCI Number 1.