2016's Seasonal Transition

Posted in Competitive Gaming on August 11, 2016

By Mike Rosenberg

Mike Rosenberg is a writer and gamer and has been part of the Magic text coverage team since 2011. He joined Wizards as organized play’s content specialist in June 2014.

With the conclusion of Pro Tour Eldritch Moon, the 2015–16 season has come to a close. The Pro Tour not only determined a winner, but also the final 24 competitors that you'll see at the 2016 World Championship in just a few short weeks.

We'll go through the aftermath of the Pro Tour, but first up, let's take a look at how the 2016–17 season will start out this weekend with Grand Prix Rimini.

GP Rimini and Portland

The new season kicks off with Grand Prix Rimini and Grand Prix Portland, two Standard main events to follow up the metagame that revealed itself at the Pro Tour.

Grand Prix Rimini will be the first of these to begin, with articles, photos, and more coming from our writer-reporter team of Tobi Henke and Frank Karsten. The tournament gets going at 9 a.m. local time (CET)/midnight PT/3 a.m. ET/7 a.m. UTC.

Alongside Rimini this weekend is Grand Prix Portland, as North America's pros get a head start on the 2016–17 season. Portland will feature live video coverage on twitch.tv/magic, and will also be the official Magic coverage debut of Reid Duke!

The full team for this double-GP weekend can be found below:

Play-by-Play Commentators: Marshall Sutcliffe and Brian David-Marshall

Color Commentators: Reid Duke and Jacob Van Lunen

Writer-Reporters: Marc Calderaro and Meghan Wolff (Portland), Tobi Henke and Frank Karsten (Rimini)

Producer: Rich Hagon

Technical Director: Rashad Miller

Cameras/Graphics: Neil Rigby and Steven Leeming

World Championship Roster

Perhaps the biggest news to come out of Pro Tour Eldritch Moon was the confirmation of who we will see at PAX West competing for a $70,000 first-place prize at the World Championship.

The full field of 24 competitors at the 2016 Magic: The Gathering World Championship was not decided until the resolution of the quarterfinals at the Pro Tour, when Ken Yukuhiro's defeat at the hands of eventual Pro Tour winner Lukas Blohon finalized the roster. Here's what the field looks like.

  • Seth Manfield (2015 Magic: The Gathering World Champion, Top Pro Points—North America)
  • Kazuyuki Takimura (Pro Tour Battle for Zendikar Champion)
  • Jiachen Tao (Pro Tour Oath of the Gatewatch Champion)
  • Owen Turtenwald (2015–16 Player of the Year, 2015–16 Mid-Season Master, Top Pro Points—North America)
  • Steve Rubin (Pro Tour Shadows over Innistrad Champion)
  • Niels Noorlander (Magic Online Champion)
  • Brian Braun-Duin (2015–16 Grand Prix Master)
  • Lukas Blohon (Pro Tour Eldritch Moon Champion, Top Pro Points—Europe)
  • Luis Scott-Vargas (Outstanding Hall of Famer, Top Pro Points—North America)
  • Reid Duke (Top Pro Points—North America)
  • Martin Müller (Top Pro Points—Europe)
  • Joel Larsson (Top Pro Points—Europe)
  • Márcio Carvalho (2015–16 Draft Master)
  • Oliver Tiu (2015–16 Constructed Master)
  • Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa (Top Pro Points—Latin America)
  • Thiago Saporito (Top Pro Points—Latin America)
  • Shota Yasooka (Top Pro Points—Asia-Pacific)
  • Yuuya Watanabe (Top Pro Points—Asia-Pacific)
  • Ryoichi Tamada (Top Pro Points—Asia-Pacific)
  • Samuel Pardee (Top Pro Points—At-Large)
  • Ondřej Stráský (Top Pro Points—At-Large)
  • Andrea Mengucci (Top Pro Points—At-Large)
  • Brad Nelson (Top Pro Points—At-Large)
  • Mike Sigrist (Top Pro Points—At-Large)

In the lead-up to the World Championship, we'll be featuring some short video profiles on each of the competitors. We've already gotten started on those as of Monday.

The first of the videos features none other than Luis Scott-Vargas, the 2015–16 season's Outstanding Hall of Famer and one of North America's top Pro Points earners.

Next up is Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa, Latin America's Pro Points leader.

Yesterday's video highlights Steve Rubin, the Pro Tour Shadows over Innistrad Champion.

And today's video takes a look at Niels Noorlander, this year's Magic Online Champion.

The 2016 Magic: The Gathering World Championship takes place September 1–4 as part of Magic at PAX West in Seattle, Washington. You can tune in for live coverage on twitch.tv/magic to catch all the action.

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