Pets are coming to MTG Arena, and so is a new format!
By: andreliverod - 27 Jun 2019
The new State of the beta for June 2019 is out! We finally get to find out what those empty areas on both sides of the battlefield are for. They also revealed the new name for "Standard Plus".
New Event Schedule
Let us get this out of the way first. here is the new Event schedule for the coming months:
July 1: Early Access Event
July 2: Core Set 2020 Release Date
July 2–26: Core Set 2020 Sealed
July 8–Fall 2019: Core Set 2020 Traditional Draft
July 19–August 2: Core Set 2020 Ranked Draft
Ranked Drafts gets an upgrade
Most of us have been annoyed with ranked drafts as we want to play the latest set and not the older ones that keep rotating in now and then. Well, now with M20 the latest set will always be available! There will be support for multiple sets in Ranked draft, one slot for the latest set and one with a rotating schedule:
July 5–19: War of the Spark
July 19–Fall 2019: Core Set 2020
August 2–16: Rotating Ranked Draft
August 16–29: Rotating Ranked Draft
A Brand new mastery Tree, now with cats
When the mastery tree was first introduced to us it was for the NPE (New Player Experience), it looked interesting but was unavailable most players as they had already completed that section of the game. A lot of players including myself wanted to see this Mastery system expanded as it seemed like a fun thing to play with and boy does Wizards deliver. While we do not know all the details, we know that the new Mastery tree will replace the weekly rewards and it will rotate with each set! Keeping it fresh and enables players to explore the set with custom rewards and branches to follow. Dare we ask for a Magic Duels mode with campaign quests too for each set?
Yes, as many of us have suspected from looking at the game logs and battlefield design... there will be pets and the first one comes with this update! With the new Mastery Tree comes a purchasable Mastery Pass which expands the number and types of items players can receive, and with that comes a little cat. It will be available in all the WUBRG colors of the game and you can unlock additional upgrades to your companion with your Set Mastery. Well, seems like even the Free to Play gang will open their wallets for this one, or did you manage to grind the 3400 gems required for the Mastery Pass?
With the new update comes a big change in the MTG Rulings:
Essentially, each time you take a mulligan, you draw up to seven cards, then put a number of cards from your hand equal to the number of times you have mulliganed this game on the bottom of your library in an order of your choice. Your starting hand will still be down a card for each time you mulligan, but you'll always get to select that starting hand from a choice among seven cards. Unlike the current ("Vancouver") mulligan, there's no scry after you decide your starting hand.
The new format
With rotation in fall, we will get a new format, starting from Ixalan and up to the new fall set there will be a new format called "Historic". Many have speculated on them including Kaladesh and Amonkhet in the new set, but so far it is only going to be from Ixalan and onwards. This might change in the future. The name seems a bit Weird for people outside of MTG Arena as we already have names like Modern, Legacy, and Vintage. Historic seems to suggest that it is a format older than Modern which might cause some confusion for newer players. What is your opinion on this? What name would you prefer?
Questions and Answers
Fall 2020 – Rotation will happen with the release of our fall set, code-name "Archery."
No Collection Resets – There will be no reset, wipe, or removal of cards from your collection. Those cards will still be yours to play with in non-Standard formats! And as a general reminder, there are no plans for any future resets, wipes, rollbacks, etc. Barring what could only be described as a catastrophe on multiple levels, cards in your collections will stay there.
Amonkhet and Kaladesh Blocks TBD – Amonkhet and Kaladesh blocks will not be returning to MTG Arena with rotation. While we are still interested in finding the right way to bring these sets back to MTG Arena, we're holding off for now. We made this decision because the current Standard meta is pretty healthy right now, so we hope this will naturally lead into a healthy non-rotating format as well. As more sets are released and the historic meta develops, we'll continue to evaluate when it might be the right time to add these sets. They'll be back one day, just . . . not right now.
Historic Play – There will be events and other ways you'll be able to use cards from sets no longer in Standard in a format we're calling "Historic." This will include a Historic Play queue (both Best-of-One and Best-of-Three), Direct Challenge, practice matches with Sparky, as well as some of our rotating events that are not beholden to Standard (such as Pauper, Singleton, etc.). Historic will be specific to MTG Arena, and we intended for it to be a fun and casual way you can continue to play with all the cards in your collection.
Renewal – We'll be adding some special events and rewards for players to help "renew" their collection for the new Standard environment as well as to show our appreciation for all of your support. We expect to have more information on this system sometime in August!
André Liverød Founder and CEO of AetherHub.com, techie, senior IT Network consultant, web dev, and MTG enthusiast. Likes to play with fire. You can follow André on Twitter.
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