Grand Prix Washington D.C. 2013 - The Other Eternal Format

Posted in NEWS on November 17, 2013

Nearly 1,700 players started the main event at Grand Prix Washington D.C. but they were far from the only players in the room. While side events promised booster packs and boxes of Theros to winners, not every players was looking to compete. Legacy, Vintage, and Modern formats are common ways to play with cards across Magic's history, but there's another way that stands tall: Cube Draft.

What is a Cube Draft? "A cube is a custom set of cards that you use for drafting," explained ardent cube drafter Eric Klug. "It's unique in that there's only one copy of each card. A big draw is you get to be the designer for once, and the ability to replay is good. Once you make that initial investment you can keep playing."

Eric Klug is renown for his carefully maintained cubes: Both common/uncommon and Zombie-themed varieties.


Why would someone want to play with a cube at a Grand Prix? "I don't necessarily enjoy Constructed formats. They're a lot of fun to watch but I don't like to play them. I enjoying playing cube, and it's very easy to find enough people to draft with," Klug said. "The benefit is a much larger access to players. It might be hard to find eight players on any given night of the week at home. Here, there are so many people ready to cube. Yesterday I cubed three times, with three different cubes, with only a few players overlapping."

Klug wasn't the first to adventure down the road of building their own Limited set: A name familiar in the halls of Magic R&D tipped Klug off to the fun available. "Tom Lapille, Magic developer and Ohio native, introduced me to the idea in the early 2000's," said Klug. "After enjoying his cube I decided I wanted to start my own. My cube is consists of just cards printed at common and uncommon, and the idea is that when I first started building my cube I didn't want to make a gigantic investment. Obviously that has changed."

The ability to find unique and rare versions of cards for one's cube is personalization shared with formats like Commander.


Why would someone want to build their own cube?"I think building cubes taps into a different side of the game. It lets you express yourself in a completely different way compared to Constructed or other Limited formats."