New esports events for Magic The Gathering are coming to the popular card game that’s spread worldwide over the years. It was announced at The Game Awards 2018 that more than $10 million will be at stake in tournaments in the year of 2019. The first of these events kicks off at PAX East 2019 in Boston next March. Challengers are sure to be showing up from around the globe to compete for over $1 million in prize money.
A spokesperson for Magic announced that Magic: The Gathering: Arena, the card game’s digital platform, will be making a bigger impact in esports this year. The Arena format of the game is still technically in the Beta stage of life, but has been available for PC and is developed by the folks at Wizards of the Coast. The video debuted at The Game Awards even featured Magic creator, Richard Garfield, in it’s several cameos. Here’s the announcement video that debuted at The Game Awards:
The announcement of this Magic esports league now puts the game in a unique position of being in competitive tournaments in both physical and digital forms. The official name for the seasonal competition is The Magic Pro League, or MPL. From the worldwide rankings, 32 of the top ranked players will be participating in the league’s first year for the large prize sums. It’s an important and big step for the Magic community and the president of the developing company, Chris Cooks, has stated that this step shows their “commitment to esports and our Magic players by evolving our tournament structure” and that the card game is “fully embracing esports and affirming Magic as a leader in the collectible card game category while providing lucrative opportunities for pros, players, sponsors, and esports partners.”
Making a digital version of the collection and competitive card game will allow new and seasoned players alike to pick up the rules with ease while also serving as convenient, electronic storage for cards collected through Magic The Gathering: Arena.