News Brief: Mythic Invitational Roster, Competitive Play Changes, Arena Language Updates, Grand Prix Toronto

If you wanted to keep on top of the news in Magic this week, you had to be glued to Twitter. From Arena updates to name changes, all the biggest stories from the week of February 4th took place on the social media platform.

Mythic Invitational at PAX East Roster

Shortly after the roster for the million dollar Mythic Invitational at PAX East was announced, the participant MaferMTG withdrew from the tournament. This past week her replacement was announced. Caleb Durward, also known as CalebDMTG, will be participating in the tournament at PAX East. Caleb will be one of 64 players trying to win the $250,000 first prize in the event. The tournament will use a new format—Duo Standard—where each player will bring two 60-card decks. Each match will be played with both players using different decks for the first and second game. Unlike tabletop Mythic Championships, there will be no sideboards (except in the case of Mastermind’s Acquisition).

Competitive Play Changes

There were a few Competitive Play announcements made this past week. First, Ben Drago announced that he had been hired as the Senior Manager for Competitive Gaming. At the time of writing there has not been an official announcement of Drago’s responsibilities on the main Magic website. Competitive Play encompasses everything from Friday Night Magic up to the Mythic Championships and depending on the integration, could include Arena play as well. We hope to bring you more as additional details of Drago’s role are released.

The Magic Pro Tour Twitter account also experienced a rebrand this week. Now going by @MagicESports, the account will still follow tabletop events including the Mythic Championship. In a followup tweet to the announcement, Wizards confirmed that ChannelFireball will be taking over text coverage for Grand Prix at MagicFests and that further details about coverage are still being worked out.

Arena Language Updates

The February 14th update of MTG Arena will see the game support both Japanese and Korean.

Grand Prix Toronto

The Grand Prix at MagicFest Toronto was the first Modern event to take place since Ravnica Allegiance was released and Krark-Clan Ironworks was banned. Over 1,300 players came out to try their hand at the latest iteration of the format. The diversity was on display early, with eight different decks running themselves to an 8-0 record on Day 1, including Whir of Invention Prison and a Boros Soldiers deck.

The Top 8 featured some old familiar faces, including Jund (piloted by Lucas Siow) and its cousin Black-Green Rock, as well as relative newcomers in two copies of Izzet Phoenix. The finals pitted one of Modern’s staple archetypes, Grixis Death’s Shadow, in the hands of Michael Rapp, against Whir of Invention Prison, steered by Jaxon Flannagan. The two players had met in round 14 where Flannagan handed Rapp his first loss. History was not going to repeat itself in the finals, as Rapp and his life-loss powered aggressive machine took the title in two timely tests of mettle.

Grixis Death’s Shadow

Michael Rapp

Whir of Invention Prison

Jaxon Flannagan

Looking Forward

Next week we have MagicFests in Memphis and Strasbourg. While Limited takes center stage in Strasbourg, Standard will be the story in Memphis With the Mythic Championship in Cleveland only two weeks away, the Grand Prix at MagicFest Memphis could be key in helping to shape the metagame at Cleveland. Will Hydroid Krasis continue to rule the skies or will that title go to Tempest Djinn and friends? You can check ChannelFireball for all the updates as we hurdle towards the first ever Mythic Championship.


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