Friday, September 23, 2011


There are various formats for playing magic the gathering.
The ones that are used on official tournaments are divided in two categories: Constructed and Limited


In Constructed we have six different formats: Vintage, Legacy, Modern, Extended, Standard and Block Constructed.

All of this shares the four-of-a-kind rule (you can only have a maximum of four copies of the same card in one deck, except basic lands that you can any number of them) and the minimum of sixty cards per deck.

Vintage: Vintage is one of the eternal formats. In this format all legal expansion sets are permitted.
Vintage has a banned card list for cards that use ante, sub-games and manual dexterity. In vintage the cards that are too powerful aren't banned but instead restricted, any deck can only have one copy of a restricted card instead of four.

Legacy: Legacy is also a eternal format, and all expansions are permitted like in Vintage. The different between this two formats is that in Legacy cards are banned because their power instead of just restricted.

Modern: This is the newest format, created by Wizards of the Coast in the Spring of 2011. It allows cards from the 8th edition expansion core set and all sets printed afterwards. Like in Legacy cards are banned for power reasons on Modern.

Extended: This format consists of the last four years of block rotations and core sets. With each autumn set release, one year's worth of sets rotate out of the format. Any additional sets released between rotations are automatically added to this format's card pool. The current Extended rotation consists of the Scars of Mirrodin, Lorwyn-Shadowmoor, Shards of Alara, Zendikar, Magic 2010, Magic 2011 core sets.

Standard: This format is the most widely played in magic the gathering. It consists of the latest core set released and the two latest blocks. One exception for this is in the time between the release of the Magic core set on early summer and the rotation two core sets are permitted. "Rotation" occurs every fall when the first set of the new "Block" releases and becomes Standard Legal. For now (before the release of Innistrad) the Standard set includes Magic 2011 and Magic 2012 core sets and the Zendikar and Scars of Mirrodin blocks.

Block Constructed: In this format the only cards permitted are basic lands and the cards from the most recent block. The most recent block is the Scars of Mirrodin block and it includes the Scars of Mirrodin, Mirrodin Besieged and New Phyrexia expansion sets.


Sealed: In sealed each player receives a number of boosters (usually six), open them and create a deck with those cards and any number of basic lands. There are no limit to the number of copies of each card and the minimum number of cards in the deck are forty.

Booster Draft: In booster drafts several players (usually around eight) sits at a table and receives three booster packs each. Each of them opens the first of their boosters and chooses one card from it and then passes the fourteen remaining cards to the left. Them each player chooses another card from the fourteen that he receive from the player to their right and passes the remaining to their left. This continues until there are no cards remaining, them each player opens the second booster and does the same has the first with the difference that this time the players pass it to their rigth instead. The third booster is passed to their left.
Then each player creates a deck with the cards he drafted and any basic lands he wants.

This are the "official" formats of magic, there are much more ways of playing it that where invented by the players and can be even more fun.