Round 1, Fight!

Posted in Competitive Gaming on April 22, 2015

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.

After one Pro Tour, one Grand Prix, and one big Game Day weekend to test out strategies, it's time for many aspiring Pro Tour players to bring their best Standard decks with them to the very first round of Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers this weekend!

After that, we'll take a look at some exciting news from the world of Modern Masters Weekend that you won't want to miss.

Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers!

The very first round of Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers (RPTQs) will take place this Saturday, April 25. Players from all over the world competed in Preliminary Pro Tour Qualifiers (PPTQs) from December through late February to earn an invitation to play in this weekend's RPTQ, where they will get a chance at earning their slot—as well as a travel award—to Pro Tour Magic Origins in Vancouver, Canada, which takes place July 31–August 2.

While there is still a big prize on the line for the top finishers of an RPTQ, every player who competes in one is rewarded for making it as far as they have with one of these very special promos.

Participants also get one of these deck boxes.

Not qualified for this weekend's RPTQ? That's too bad. The deck box is exclusive to this round of Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers. The Liliana of the Veil promo, however, is available at the other rounds of RPTQs taking place in 2015, so there are still opportunities for you to get one.

That's just what players get for competing in a Regional Pro Tour Qualifier. But what if they do well? If an RPTQ features 128 or fewer participants, the Top 4 finishers will receive a travel award as well as an invitation to compete in Pro Tour Magic Origins (5th- through 8th-place finishers are invited to the next round of RPTQs in late June/early July). If an RPTQ is 129 or more participants, the Top 8 players receive invitations and airfare.

There are 31 Regional Pro Tour Qualifiers taking place worldwide this weekend. If you're traveling to one, then good luck, and maybe we'll see you in Vancouver this July. If you're not qualified to play in an RPTQ, but are interested in getting to play in one, find a Preliminary Pro Tour Qualifier near you and earn your spot for the next round!

And now on to something that is taking place a little later than this Saturday…

Modern Masters Weekend—the multi-day celebration of Modern Magic across three very special Grand Prix—takes place at the end of May. Today, one of those GPs is our prime focus: Las Vegas.

A couple of quick facts about Grand Prix Las Vegas:

  • Last week, pre-registration for this event surpassed 4,493 players, officially making this GP Vegas larger than the (previous) biggest Grand Prix ever (Grand Prix Las Vegas 2013)
  • As of Tuesday morning, 4,760 players have pre-registered to compete in the GP Vegas main event
  • The event is still a little more than five weeks out
  • Players can get an event-exclusive playmat through the side events at Grand Prix Las Vegas featuring art from a card previewed on today!

Oh, wait a moment. That last bullet point is new! And yes, you read that correctly. Players who participate in Grand Prix Las Vegas side events have a chance to get an event-exclusive playmat featuring the artwork from an iconic card with new art that you can view by heading over to ChannelFireball's web site.

Oh, and if you haven't done so already, pre-register while you're there. After all, they have more than a few cool things to give away—such as an Unlimited Mox Emerald—to players who have pre-registered. You also get to be a part of making Magic history, while you're at it!

The Flashback

Grand Prix Kyoto went into the history books as Asia's very first Legacy Constructed Grand Prix. 1,943 players took their best shot at winning the Grand Prix title, with a variety of strategies. While Delver of Secrets decks may have been the most popular deck archetype of Day Two, it was Miracles that ended up being on the grand stage by the end of the tournament, as Kazuya Murakami faced off against veteran Yuuta Takahashi in an all-Counterbalance finals.

In true Takahashi fashion—and as a player who owes his two prior Grand Prix trophies to Faeries—the veteran Japanese pro dispatched Murakami in the third and final game courtesy of Vendilion Clique, perhaps the most iconic faerie of them all.

Full Coverage


Top 8 Decklists

"Dack Tech"

Day One Undefeated Decklists

Trial Decklists


Catching up with Olivier Ruel—Coverage reporter Chapman Sim ran into a Pro Tour Hall of Famer who he did not quite expect to see in Kyoto.

Grand Prix Kyoto 2015 Photo Journal—Coverage reporter Ben Swartz translates and shares the Japanese coverage team member Seo Asako's photo journal of GP Kyoto.

While Kyoto was all Eternal all the time, Grand Prix Krakow was a continuation of the Pro Tour's Standard format. The big story from Krakow was all about Esper Dragons, the deck that made its debut via the ChannelFireball and Face to Face Games team members who played it at Pro Tour Dragons of Tarkir. The control deck put up big finishes in Krakow, landing six of its pilots in the Top 8.

The finals of Grand Prix Krakow featured dueling Esper Dragons opponents, both players looking to add another Grand Prix trophy to their collection. While Slovenia's Robin Dolar, Grand Prix Boston Worcester 2014 champion, put up a fight, the trophy ended up going to Canada's Alexander Hayne. This win marks Hayne's fourth Grand Prix title in two years.

Full Coverage


Top 8 Decklists

Top 16 Decklists

Interesting Decks on Day Two

The Big Three of Standard

Day One Undefeated Decklists

Grand Prix Trials Decklists


Meet Martin Müller—Coverage reporter and Hall of Famer Olle Råde sits down with Martin Müller, Denmark's young Magic star and captain of the 2014 World Magic Cup winning team.

Deck Tech: Big Red with Raphaël Lévy—Coverage reporter Tobi Henke chats with Raphaël Lévy about his Big Red deck; how it evolved from Pro Tour Dragons of Tarkir, and more.

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