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How to Play MTG Arena

What is Magic: The Gathering Arena?

MTG Arena is a digital collectible card game available on desktop and mobile, for beginners and long-time Magic lovers alike! Collect, build and master your unique deck that will become its own legend. Earn rewards and go head-to-head against friends or other players. Start playing for free and feel the magic of the original fantasy CCG!

  • Play Your Way: Bring your best to the battlefield with the power of Magic on mobile or desktop.

  • Jump Right In: Get started with powerful decks and rewards just from playing!

  • Meet Sparky! Learn the game with a quirky glowing orb AI who will teach you the tips and tricks.

This is meant to be an instructional guide only. Players should refer to the Terms of Service prior to playing.


Ready to learn Magic? Jump over to the Magic New Player Page where you'll find more information on how to get started, where you can play, and how to bring your best to the battlefield.

How does MTG Arena work?

MTG Arena follows the same rules as the tabletop card game. Players use decks of cards that generate five colors of mana, and play cards that consume mana to call for creatures, cast defensive and offensive spells, and activate effects or unique abilities. Complete the tutorial, build your profile and start playing MTG Arena!


Perfect for new players, this will get you familiar with a format used at events of all levels. Standard is a dynamic format where you build decks and play using cards in your collection from recently released Magic sets.


Alchemy is a new play mode featuring new-to-digital Magic cards designed specifically for digital play. Expect regular changes to the format to create a dynamic play experience in-between Standard set releases.


Ranging from casual to competitive, Historic is a Magic format built to allow you to use cards that are no longer legal in Standard after rotation. This format is exclusive to MTG Arena.


An exciting deck-brewing challenge, Brawl is most similar to Commander. In this format, you'll build a Commander-style deck around a legendary creature or Planeswalker and play 1v1 games on MTG Arena.


Timeless is MTG Arena’s largest Constructed format where every card is legal. Make a deck with the most powerful cards throughout Magic history. This format is perfect for veteran players who want to experiment with unique combinations or revisit sets from Magic's past.

Choose Your Avatar

It's your game! Customize your play with your favorite avatar! Start with 12 options and gain additional avatars through events and with the in-game store.

Swap Your Card Sleeves

Set the tone with card sleeves to show off your style. Artwork ranges from Planeswalkers to creatures to exclusive event art!


Bring your personality to the battlefield with pets! Choose the perfect pet to strike fear in your enemies (or to just look cute). Pets are available for purchase in the MTG Arena Store.

Customize Your Emotes

Want to say something with some emote magic? Change around your settings to use character emotes from your favorite set!

Choose Your Deck

Pick a play style and then select your deck! In MTG Arena you'll begin with a variety of starter decks. As you play you'll gain wildcards to redeem and earn boosters to expand your collection! In this section you can easily build, upload, and edit your decks. When choosing your play format, you'll only see decks that are legal in that format.

Boost your game with a bundle!

MTG Arena Welcome Bundle

Get started with MTG Arena with a Welcome Bundle! The Welcome Bundle gives you access to five packs from the newest sets to start you off, plus 2,500 gems. Purchase on the MTG Arena store.

MTG Arena Rewards

Types of Rewards


Play as your favorite  Magic  character with Planeswalker avatars! Start with 12 options and gain additional avatars through events and through the in-game store. 


As you level up through your mastery journey you can earn these eight card packs. Unlock even more cards through events and daily wins!


Earn gold and use it to purchase packs, compete in draft events, and unlock in-game cosmetics! Gold is one of two  MTG Arena  currencies and can only be earned (not purchased) by playing games, completing in-game quests, winning matches, and participating in events.


Buy or earn gems and use them to enter into events, purchase booster packs, and upgrade cosmetics! Gems are one of two currencies in  MTG Arena  and the only currency you can purchase in the store. 


Customize your game experience and choose the perfect pet to strike fear in your enemies (or to just look cute). Pets are available for purchase in the  MTG Arena  Store.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn the basics and start unlocking powerful cards and decks right away.

Click here to download and play the legendary adventure and strategy card game for FREE on PC, Mac, iOS and Android.

MTG Arena is free to download. Players looking to enhance their game experience will have the opportunity to do so through in-game purchases but purchases are not required to access the full depth of authentic Magic: The Gathering gameplay.

When you start a new Magic: The Gathering Arena account, you can skip the tutorial at any point. You'll still get the rewards associated with the tutorial without having to play through all the games, too!

To do so:

  1. Click on the Adjust Options (gear) icon in the upper right-hand side of the screen, then select View Account.
  2. On the Account Screen, select Skip Tutorial and confirm your choice.
  3. After selecting your avatar, click the gear icon and select Skip Tour to unlock all play modes.

Here’s how to redeem a code in MTG Arena:

  1. Go to
  2. Sign in.
  3. Click into the text box on the right, under Redeem A Code.
  4. Enter a code.
  5. Press Redeem.
  6. If you have entered a code successfully, you will see a confirmation message.
  7. When you open the MTG Arena app and go to the Store tab, you will receive your redeemed items.

Codes can also be redeemed within the PC/Mac clients

The Mastery System is a way for players to earn experience and unlock rewards by playing Magic: The Gathering Arena.

Set Masteries are available for the most recent Standard set, starting on the day the set is released and ending when the next set is released.

More about Mastery System:

While all players have access to the base Mastery System, the Mastery Pass is an optional way for players to earn additional rewards through Set Mastery.

More about Mastery Pass:

Standard format allows you to build decks and play using cards in your collection from recently released Magic sets. This is a rotating format which means it's ever evolving and encourages fresh strategies.

All Standard legal sets are available in MTG Arena. Cards available for purchase during previous rotations in MTG Arena are not available, but may be reintroduced in the future.

For more info, please see our Rotation Guide here.

New Standard-legal sets for MTG Arena will launch alongside their tabletop counterpart, allowing MTG Arena to always be a current Magic experience.

In MTG Arena, a wildcard is a card that can be redeemed for another card of the same rarity. Wildcards can be obtained in booster packs, and are available in all rarities: common, uncommon, rare, and mythic rare. As you acquire commons and uncommons of which you already own 4 copies, you earn progress to fill your Vault. Once you fill your Vault, you also get wildcards - 3 uncommon, 2 rare, and 1 mythic.

For more, please see our Reward Distribution & Drop Rate information.

There are a few ways to turn a wildcard into a card you'd like:

  • If you already have a copy of the card, you can just click it in your collection without first clicking the Wildcard button.
  • If you don't have a copy of the card, change the filters to include Not Collected cards, search for the card, then click it.
  • While editing a deck, if you attempt to add more copies of a card than you own to a deck, you'll be prompted to redeem a wildcard for that card.
  • If you import a deck containing cards you don't own, there's a Craft All button by the Done button in deck edit you can use to craft all the missing cards.

You can mouse over the wildcard icon at the top of the client to see how many wildcards of each rarity you have currently.

For more, please see our Reward Distribution & Drop Rate information.

Importing a deck into MTG Arena is a great way to test out card combos, quickly jump into the current metagame, or emulate the style of your favorite players.

To import a deck into MTG Arena, please follow the steps below:

  1. Copy the desired decklist into your computer’s clipboard.
    • This could be any program that displays information in a simplified format.
    • Want to command the undead? Copy the Liliana Core Set 2021 Planeswalker Deck below:
  2. Login to your MTG Arena account and click on the Decks tab.
  3. From there, click on the IMPORT button on the lower left-hand side of the screen.
  4. Once done, you will see a confirmation message on your screen indicating the successful import. Click OK.
  5. Your newly imported deck will then appear among your other decks with “Imported Deck” as the default name. You can edit this by clicking on the deck’s name.
  6. Now, select the deck and click the Edit Deck button. Here, you’ll be able to use your available wildcards to craft any cards missing from the deck that are not in your collection, which are highlighted on the right-hand side of the screen.
  7. Once you’ve finished editing, click the Done button.

Jumpstart is an easy-to-learn, wildly fun format, available on MTG Arena. You'll be able to mix, match, and cause mayhem across 46 different themes and 121 possible 20-card lists inside any given pack.

Playing Jumpstart on MTG Arena is easy—you join the event, you pick your packets, and you play! Let's show you how it works.

When you join the event, you'll first get to pick from one of three possible themes, pulled from all those possibilities we listed above.

Once you've selected your first theme, you will then pick your second theme from three new-ish ones. New-ish, because while you might see the same theme both times, most themes have multiple possible card lists (and for more info on that, you can view the tabletop decklists here).

Once you've picked your second theme—boom, you're done! You have a 40-card deck, complete with lands ready to go. All you need to do is hit play! You'll be allowed to play each of your Jumpstart decks during the event as much as you like—and you'll earn two rare Jumpstart individual card rewards for your first two wins.

If you ever grow tired of your Tree-Hugging Vampires, you can always resign from the event, rejoin, or maybe give those "rainbow" lands a whirl.

The Midweek Magic event is free-to-play, offering players a chance to earn cosmetic MTG Arena items. Players can enter the event any number of times and all matches are played in a best-of-one format.

A free-entry weekly event rewards a Rare or higher ICR from the Standard pool for each of the first two wins, which then make you eligible for a cosmetics code one can get from a local Magic store.

Click here to learn about individual formats.

The Arena Open occurs a few times a year. It’s the most competitive event on Arena you don’t need to qualify for, lasting two days. The format could be Standard, Historic, Sealed or Alchemy. Only those winning in the first day compete on the second day. This event has the highest entry fee on Arena, but second-day winners are getting cash prizes.

Magic: The Gathering Arena’s ranked system is divided into two main formats: constructed and limited. Each format has its own separate ladder.

Your constructed ranking is based on how you perform in games where you get to use cards from your collection to craft a deck. Your limited rank changes based on your performance in any draft or sealed events you do.

There are six primary ranks for each format: Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum, Diamond, and Mythic. Each ranking has four different tiers to it and you work your way from Bronze to Silver and so on by winning matches. Advancing through each tier differs based on how high your ranking is.

It takes six points to move up a tier in your rank regardless of which format you’re playing. If you’re Gold or lower, a win gives you two points toward the next rank and a loss deducts one point.

Once you’ve reached Platinum, things get a little bit more difficult. Every win gives you one point and losses take away one point, meaning you need to win more than 50 percent of your matches to progress to the next tier.

After you hit the Mythic rank, it’s a bit different, though. At that point, your “tier” is replaced by the percentile you’re in among Mythic level players. Once you reach the top 1,200, your percentage is replaced with a specific rank.

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