The fourth Pro Tour of the annual pro season is always an impactful one. At the end of the weekend, we'll have a field of 24 Magic: The Gathering World Championship competitors for 2017, 2016–17 Pro Tour Team Series finalists, World Magic Cup captaincies for 73 countries, a 2016–17 Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Pro Club levels set through the 2017–18 annual season, and . . . oh right, a Pro Tour Champion.
Whether you're a newcomer to the Pro Tour viewing experience or a long-time fan just looking for the deets on when to tune in, we've got you covered today.
PRO TOUR HOUR OF DEVASTATION BASICS
Here's what you need to know about Pro Tour Hour of Devastation:
- The Pro Tour is a three-day, invitation-only event featuring some of greatest Magic pros as well as top-finishing Grand Prix competitors, Hall of Famers, and players who found success in June's Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers. Those players will be competing for a share of the $250,000 prize pool, with $50,000 and an invitation to the 2017 Magic: The Gathering World Championship going to the winner. Pro Tour Hour of Devastation is the last event of the 2016–17 annual season, which has implications for a number of end-of-season races!
- The formats for Friday and Saturday are three rounds of Booster Draft—using two Hour of Devastation packs and one Amonkhet pack, in that order—and five rounds of Standard Constructed. All matches on Friday and Saturday are best-two-out-of-three games.
- The following sets are legal in Standard Constructed for this tournament: Battle for Zendikar, Oath of the Gatewatch, Shadows over Innistrad, Eldritch Moon, Kaladesh, Aether Revolt, Amonkhet, and Hour of Devastation.
- The following cards are currently banned in Standard Constructed and cannot be used by players: Smuggler's Copter; Reflector Mage; Emrakul, the Promised End; Felidar Guardian; and most recently, Aetherworks Marvel.
- This Pro Tour is part of the Pro Tour Team Series 2016–17 soft launch. At the end of this event, the Top 4 teams competing in the Team Series will receive invitations and airfare to compete in Pro Tour Ixalan in Albuquerque, New Mexico, regardless of whether they remain as a team for next season. The Top 2 teams will be invited to compete in a playoff match for over $50,000 at the 2017 Magic: The Gathering World Championship.
- All players with 12 or more match points (a 4-4 record or better) at the end of the first day will advance to Day Two of the competition.
- The Top 8 players at the end of Day Two will advance to Sunday's playoff, featuring a traditional single-elimination bracket.
- All matches played on Sunday are best-three-out-of-five, with the first two games featuring pre-sideboard action.
- The winner gets $50,000, Platinum status in the Pro Tour Players Club (which will give that player invitations with airfare and appearance fees through the 2016–17 and 2017–18 seasons), and an invitation to compete in the 2017 Magic: The Gathering World Championship.
- The $250,000 prize pool pays down to 64th place, awarding a minimum of $1,000. In addition, all players with 33 or more match points at the end of the Pro Tour's Swiss rounds will receive an invitation to compete in the next Pro Tour.
That's the quick hits about this Pro Tour, but as it's the last one of the 2016–17 season, a few other things are also being decided this weekend.
- All 24 seats for the 2017 Magic: The Gathering World Championship will be known by the end of this weekend.
- All 73 team captains for the 2017 World Magic Cup will be known.
- We'll have a 2016–17 Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year.
- For many players, this is their last chance to hit new levels in the Pro Tour Players Club.
- We will know the Magic Pro Tour Hall of Fame Class of 2017 on Friday shortly after Round 3 of the Pro Tour.
That's a lot, and Rich Hagon already spent a good deal of time talking about all this and more, so if you're looking for a deep dive into how much this Pro Tour matters, read that (but beware all the puns).
WHEN DOES COVERAGE START?
You can watch every round of Pro Tour Hour of Devastation on twitch.tv/magic Friday, Saturday, and Sunday beginning at 9 a.m. local time. Of course, local time is Japan Standard Time, since this event is taking place live from Kyoto, Japan. If you're in North America and are reading this today, Thursday, then that means the Pro Tour starts tonight for you! Here's when everything kicks off for you based on your time zone.
|Time Zone||Day One||Day Two||Day Three|
|Pacific Time (PT)||Thursday at 5 p.m.||Friday at 5 p.m.||Saturday at 5 p.m.|
|Eastern Time (ET)||Thursday at 8 p.m.||Friday at 8 p.m.||Saturday at 8 p.m.|
|Central European Time (CET)||2 a.m.||2 a.m.||2 a.m.|
|Japan Time (JST)||9 a.m.||9 a.m.||9 a.m.|
If you can't watch the broadcast live, don't sweat it! We'll be replaying the broadcast once each day concludes, and for folks in North America, this may be an excellent way for you to tune in to the full show if you're looking to avoid spoilers.
In addition to that, VODs (videos on demand) of each round and segment will be available on our Twitch page, with separate collections for both the matches as well as our deck techs and feature content!
THE COVERAGE TEAM
Here's who you will see on Twitch this weekend bringing you live coverage.
- Play-by-Play Commentators: Marshall Sutcliffe, Riley Knight, and Tim Willoughby
- Color Commentators: Luis Scott-Vargas and Paul Cheon
- News Desk: Rich Hagon, Brian David-Marshall, and Maria Bartholdi
- Feature Match Spotters: Rashad Miller and Neil Rigby
- Writer-Reporters: Marc Calderaro and Chapman Sim
- Content Managers/Editors: Blake Rasmussen and Mike Rosenberg
- Social Media: Nate Price and Chris Peeler
- Executive Producer: Greg Collins
This Pro Tour marks the return of Maria Bartholdi at the news desk, as well as the Pro Tour commentary debuts of Riley Knight and Paul Cheon. The work of Nathan Holt and Shawn Kornhauser will also be featured during the Friday and Saturday lunch breaks, showcasing a two-part Enter the Battlefield that takes a look into Japan's Magic community.
WHERE ELSE CAN I EXPERIENCE THE COVERAGE?
Round-by-round content, decklists, articles, pairings, results, standings, and all the usual good stuff will all be available on our Pro Tour Hour of Devastation coverage page, so bookmark that one and check back for regular updates, articles from Marc Calderaro and Chapman Sim, and a whole lot more!
In addition to our live video coverage on Twitch, Nico Nico will be hosting a Japanese-language stream of the Pro Tour, and Bili Bili will be broadcasting a Chinese-language stream, bringing the Pro Tour to a global audience in three languages. You can also catch the Japanese-language stream on Twitch in their debut of a Twitch broadcast for the Pro Tour.
WHEN WILL DECKLISTS BE PUBLISHED?
This is our most-asked question every Pro Tour. Standard Constructed Top 8 decklists will be posted shortly after the Swiss rounds conclude on Saturday.
The rest of the top decklists, featuring all 6-4 or better decks, typically get posted no later than Sunday afternoon. Oftentimes these get published during the quarterfinals, so check back Sunday in the first few hours of the broadcast and visit the coverage page to see them once they're live!
WHERE CAN I FIND OUT MORE?
If you can't watch the live broadcast (or are asleep during it) and want the quick download of all that happened, follow @magicprotour on Twitter for the very latest. Join in on the conversation using the hashtag #PTHOU.
Kyoto, Japan, will be the finish line for many this weekend. Tune in to twitch.tv/magic to catch all of it!