Thursday, April 25, 2013

Summary Of Changes To WotC Premier Play In 2013

*Twitter updates at the end*

Big changes to WotC Premier Play were announced Wednesday night by Helene Bergeot (@helenebergeot), Director of Organized Play. Need a quick summary of all the major changes? Here you go!

1. The summer Pro Tour will mark the end of the season, with the first Grand Prix after that marking the start of the next.

2013-2014 Pro Tour season
GP Guadalajara (May 24, 2013) – Core Set Pro Tour (Summer 2014)

Remember there are now four Pro Tours in a season, a World Magic Cup, and the Player's Champs.

2. Sponsor's Exemptions and Silver and Gold MTGO PTQs eliminated.

Sponsor's Exemptions stop with PT Theros, while the MTGO PTQs stop with PT Born of the Gods.

There will still be discretionary special invites, like those for Day[9].

3. Completely new level benefits and thresholds, effective starting on May 20, 2013.

New benefits in bold.

Silver (20 Pro Points, up from 15)
  • 2 byes at all Grand Prix
  • Invited to WMCQs
  • Receives 10 QP for each MOCS season
  • Invited to the Pro Tour immediately following their promotion to Silver

Gold (35, up from 30)
  • 3 byes at all Grand Prix
  • Invited to WMCQs
  • Receives 15 QP for each MOCS season
  • Invited to all PTs
  • $500 appearance fee at PTs

Platinum (50, up from 45)
  • 3 byes at all Grand Prix
  • Invited to WMCQs
  • Receives 20 QP for each MOCS season
  • Invited to all PTs
  • $3,000 appearance fee at PTs
  • $1,000 appearance fee at WMC
  • $250 appearance fee at Grand Prix
  • Free sleep-in special at all Grand Prix where available

Random bonus: Hall of Famers also get the free sleep-in special.

The QP bonuses start with MOCS Season 7, which begins on June 12, 2013.

4. Winning a Pro Tour gets you automatic Platinum for the rest of the season and all of next season.

5. Only your top 5 Grand Prix performances will count towards your Pro Points total.

In the last two years, Platinum players earned an average of 8 Pro Points per Pro Tour. This data helped determine the above number.

6. Grand Prix will have a maximum of 15 rounds (nine on Day One and six on Day Two).

7. Grand Prix with 1,200+ competitors will award Pro Tour invites to all players with at least 39 points in the Swiss (at least 13 wins or 12 wins and 3 draws).

Airfare not included. The invite goes to the Pro Tour fed by that Grand Prix.

This rule starts with GP Portland and GP Beijing.

They're still figuring out team GPs.

8. Grand Prix Trials will award two byes for winning, not three.

This starts for Grand Prix scheduled in Season 3, kicking off August 17, 2013.

Planeswalker Points thresholds for byes remain the same: 400 points for a one-round bye, 750 for two, 1,500 for three.

9. Dates for the PTQ rounds (same as Planeswalker Points Seasonal Award Seasons for Grand Prix byes)

Pro Tour Journey into Nyx qualifier round December 2, 2013–March 9, 2014
Pro Tour Core Set qualifier round March 10, 2014–June 1, 2014
Pro Tour "Huey" qualifier round June 2, 2014–August 24, 2014
Pro Tour "Dewey" qualifier round August 25, 2014–November 30, 2014

10. Number of PTQs by region

Geographic Region PTQs/Year Increase
2013 2014
United States, Canada, Puerto Rico 285 372 +87
Europe 219 264 +45
Asia Pacific 54 68 +14
Mexico, Central and South America 42 52 +10
Japan 39 44 +5
Totals 639 800 +161

11. Future Pro Tour locations

Pro Tour Born of the Gods February 2014 Europe (City TBD)
Pro Tour Journey into Nyx May 2014 Atlanta, Georgia
Pro Tour Core Set August 2014 Portland, Oregon
Pro Tour "Huey" October 2014 Honolulu, Hawaii
Worlds Week December 2014 Nice, France

Worlds Week is what they're calling the World Championship and the World Magic Cup.

The Yearly Planeswalker Points season thresholds for the 2014 WMCQs will be announced in July.

Q: Am I Qualified For PT Theros (Dublin)?

This is a question on a lot of people's minds. Scott Larabee answered this on Twitter last night:

So if you have 15 Pro Points after San Diego, you are qualified for Pro Tour Theros.

Ensuing Debate On Twitter

Of course these changes don't come without their own bit of controversy. Here is the current problem as pointed out by many of the top pros:

If you're not yet Silver and have just Top 4ed a Grand Prix (qualifying you for the next Pro Tour), do you concede so you avoid making Silver right then?

By doing so, you can try to "save" your Silver Pro Tour invite for the following Pro Tour, which you aren't qualified for yet.

Need a refresher on how many Pro Points you get playing in professional events?

Magic: The Gathering Professional Points Structure

Want to see more of the Twitter conversation?

Thread started by Matt Nass

Thread started by Brian Kibler

Responses from WotC (conversation is ongoing):