Changes in the World of Prereleases

Posted in Feature on June 18, 2008

By Wizards of the Coast

This is truly a year of changes for Magic: The Gathering. Following on the early June announcement regarding the changes to the TCG and publishing offerings and the first outline of the Wizards Play Network, we present the new plan for Prerelease tournaments beginning with Shards of Alara, the set to be released on October 3, 2008.

We are changing the dates of the Prerelease tournaments and significantly expanding the number of locations where Prereleases will be organized in a number of countries.

These changes are being made because we want Prereleases to be a key milestone for all players to discover the new cards, stories, settings and play experiences delivered by a new set. If you have never participated in a tournament, if it has been a while since you last played, or if you want to find out about the latest set, Prereleases are the best option for you because all participants discover the new cards at the same time.

In previous years, the types of locations and the event dates for Prereleases have varied greatly depending on your country. Beginning with Shards of Alara, we are turning Prereleases into global celebrations of the new set by offering a similar gaming experience to all players and making the event broadly accessible to all.

Moving forward, we will offer you two opportunities to play with a new set:

  1. Prerelease tournaments: These will now to take place everywhere in the world six days before the release date.
  2. Launch parties: These will be organized the weekend of the set release.

The Prerelease is your chance to be among the first players to get your hands on the new cards and experience a great tournament. Launch parties will offer you the possibility to further explore the set and its themes in a cool, relaxed, and fun environment. If you're new to tournaments, both events will give you the option to play the new set with the intro packs that we unveiled earlier in June.

We will be recruiting locations very soon to bring both gaming opportunities right to your door. For many players, these changes mean that you will have more choices closer to your home to play in a Prerelease and/or launch party.

If you are a tournament organizer and/or a store owner, you can find out more about the criteria for running these events here—as you would expect, both events are becoming key components of the Wizards Play Network. The exciting news on this front is that any organizer who meets these requirements will have the possibility to host a prerelease and launch party—so check out the Wizards Play Network page!

For the Shards of Alara events, we will post detailed information and a list of locations in August. Mark these dates on your calendar!

Shards of Alara worldwide Prerelease tournaments: September 27-28, 2008

Shards of Alara worldwide launch parties: October 3-5, 2008

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